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Thread: Another Build Thread - My '32
          
   
   

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  1. #481
    Mike P's Avatar
    Mike P is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Don't know if this will help you or not but figured I'd throw it out there.

    When I set up an AC system I usually mock my rubber lines up with heater hose first. I go ahead and loosely install the fitting Iím going to be using where they need to go. Depending on the fitting, usually 1/2, 5/8, or 3/4 inch heater hose will slip into the fittings. As the heater hose has usually been stored in a coil it has a natural curve to it like the AC hose does and this can be an advantage as you can often make that curve work for you when laying out the hose (trying to bend the AC hose against the curve to make it lay the way you want can be a big PIA).

    I usually start out with the heater hose a bit on the long side then trim it to the correct length when itís fully seated in the AC fitting. Once Iím happy with the line layout I take a marker and draw a line on the fitting and hose so I know how the fitting are supposed to be oriented in case they get bumped when I take them into the parts store to have the actual line made. Thatís especially critical if you have a hose with an angled fitting on both ends that HAVE to be properly indexed from each other to work.

    When I take them into the parts store to have the lines made up I tell them to make the lines the same length as the heater hose. On the lines that have an angled fitting on them I tell them to make sure the curvature of the AC hose is oriented the same direction as the as the curve on the heater hose.

    For me it works like a charm, once I get the hoses back they always end up fitting and are the correct length. Make sure you tell them you want the heater hoses backÖÖ.that way you can lay the piece of heater hose on top of the new AC line and verify they cut it to the right length and the fitting were oriented correctly before they were crimped. Depending on the length of the heater hose it can often be used to connect the heater core so it doesnít go to waste.

    All that being said, itís been a long time since I bought heater hose so I donít know how pricey it currently is. I do know it should be a lot cheaper than AC hose (besides being a lot easier to work with when mocking up the system). If you screw up on just one AC line and have to have it remade chances are that the replacement line and fittings would end up costing more than the cost of heater hose for mockup.
    NTFDAY, Hotrod46, rspears and 3 others like this.
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  2. #482
    Dave Severson is offline CHR Member/Contributor Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Life does have a way of interrupting projects, huh?
    36 sedan likes this.
    Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, Live for Today!
    Carroll Shelby

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  3. #483
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    Car Year, Make, Model: 31 Ford Coupe; 32 Ford 3-window
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    It sure does, Dave. I got the bathroom remodel about 90% done and my wife had to have surgery on her back. Now I'm chief cook, nurse, and physical therapist for at least the next month... Maybe THEN I'll get to work on the '32 again.

  4. #484
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    I'm baaack! Finally! Geez, it seems like forever since I've spent any time on the '32. Anyway, the wife has mostly recovered from her back surgery and the bathroom remodel is finally finished. Except for my involvement in Electrathon racing, I should be free to make progress.

    Before life interrupted, I had turned my attention to the A/C hoses. After about three or four trips to the computer to order different fittings, I had everything I needed. It was about that time that I got sidelined. Finally, yesterday I was able to get back on the hoses and complete them. I have a borrowed hydraulic crimper (swedge tool) that installs the hose ends very neatly. I cut and fit all the different size (diameter) hoses before I crimped anything. While the hoses were in place, I marked the position of the ends on the hoses with a gold sharpie (visible on the under-dash pic). Then I took each hose off, one-at-a-time, and swedged the ends on. Finally, I tightened all the connections. I'll put the vacuum machine on it soon to check for leaks.

    Here are some pics of the finished hoses. Thankfully, most of the hoses are out of sight when the hood is in place. The pink zip-ties will be replaced with black when the grille shell goes back on and the mounting points are finalized.
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    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  5. #485
    rspears's Avatar
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    Nice work on the hoses, which are a genuine pain to deal with! Having the crimper is a huge help, vs having to take them all to the auto parts store and explain how important it is that the marks line up EXACTLY, and praying that the guy was listening!
    stovens and Driver50x like this.
    Roger
    Enjoy the little things in life, and you may look back one day and realize that they were really the BIG things.

  6. #486
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    Sorry for the slow response - Electrathon racing season is under way now...

    My good friend Mike Krupp bought the crimping tool, so I bought the vacuum pump and gauges. Mike is building a '37 Chevy sedan and we'll use both pieces of equipment on both cars. We help each other frequently and, yes, having access to that tool made the job a lot more convenient.

    Today I finally put the grille shell back on the car. In order to do so I had to cut some material away to provide clearance for the A/C lines. It was a simple process, but every little step is a step closer to completion. Next is finishing the hood and making the new front mount for it.
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    Dave Severson and Driver50x like this.
    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  7. #487
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    Well, it's been a while. Life gets in the way. I actually did some fabrication, but then there was Christmas and all those obligations, a couple of Electrathon races, and there is always some "honey-dos" that pop up. So.., what fabrication did I do?

    I sidestepped the hood and grille shell modifications for now so I could do the wiring. First, I needed a place to mount the fuse block. I considered putting it behind the passenger seat, but I have power seats. If I blew a fuse in the seat circuit, how would I get to it if the seat wouldn't move? The passenger side under the dash is crowded with the A/C hoses and hardware that needs to be accessible, so it turns out that the fuse block needs to go in the common driver's side cowl area. With the location decided I needed a mount for it. I started with a piece of scrap cardboard and, through cut and try method, I made a pattern for a mount that fits between the square steel tubes in the cowl. I transferred the pattern to some 16-gauge aluminum, cut it out, bent the flanges on my benchtop brake, and put thread inserts where the fuse block bolt holes go.

    Finally, I drilled and secured the mount in place with big-head 3/16, steel shank pop rivets. Now the real fun begins - wiring.
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    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  8. #488
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    Well, it's been a while... again. I haven't been totally absent, just doing obscure things. I'm in the middle of Electrathon season, which keeps me sidetracked sometimes, and since my last posting here I've been doing some wiring... slowly.

    Anyway, here are some shots of what I've accomplished between races and "honey-do's". After labeling all the wires on the harness so I could see what they are (wires are labeled anyway, but with tiny print that old eyes don't see well), I bolted the fuse panel in pace and started connecting things. I didn't like the under-dash panel I made earlier, so I scrapped it and made a much simpler piece. This little piece hides the bar I added to support the A/C unit and also gives me a place to mount the light and wiper switches. I covered it with a light tan vinyl that I will be using on the door panels and headliner. In the picture you can see the 3M #90 spray adhesive. I've used this stuff for years and always had good results. Of course, the edges are folded around the edges and stapled on the back side.
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    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  9. #489
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    So here is the panel installed under the dash. On the far left are the light and wiper switches. The rest is just plain.

    The second picture is the beginnings of my second version of a pattern for a console. It still lacks the top portion where it would fit against the bottom of the A/C evap unit. I'm not entirely happy with it, so I may scrap it and try something else. I had intended to mount the radio and the power window switches in it, but now I'm considering the possibility of making an overhead console instead. Time will tell.
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    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  10. #490
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    OK, nothing earth-shattering to relate. I haven't added anything here since March because I haven't done much. I was deeply involved (maybe I should say embroiled) in wiring when I hit a snag. This is not my first rodeo; this is the 8th car I have wired and most of them have been pretty much snag and problem free. The first 5 that I did were done without a wiring kit! I simply built a fuse panel, bought an array of different color and gauge wires, and strung one wire at a time until they were done. My '31 has been on the road for 17 years with no wiring issues.

    The last three, my son's '50 Mercury, my Track-T, and this one I have used pre-fab'd wiring harness kits. The Merc and the T went together without issues, but this one almost drove me to do something regrettable - like involving gasoline and a match! Anyway, as it turns out the problem was not with the wiring harness, it was my choice of components and a silly mistake. I literally walked away from this car, closed the doors, and spent my time and efforts on other things for a while. So, what happened? Here is my saga of ignorance and stupidity...

    The wiring kit I bought was the same exact make and model I used on the '50 Mercury. It all went well until I finished wiring the turn signals. The headlights, parking lights, and taillights all worked as expected. However, the turn signals would not flash no matter what. OK, that wasn't completely unexpected - all the lights in my entire system are LEDs. I installed the lightest duty flasher I had and still no dice. I ordered new flashers on Amazon specifically for LED applications. Then the rear signals would work, but the fronts would only work if the headlights or parking lights were turned on! I've encountered similar problems before - the fronts aren't sufficiently grounded, right? Wrong! Every test I ran with my continuity tester and multimeter say I have a good ground. I switched the wires on my parking lights and turn signals - same result. Also, the indicator lights in the dash would come on, but wouldn't flash no matter what! GRRRR!! OK, I'll do something else and come back to this later.

    I haven't had this thing running since I set the body on the chassis. Maybe I ought to just turn the key and fire it up. Yeah! So I turned the key and it sounded like the starter is about to fall off! I haven't messed with it at all, haven't had the starter off or loose or anything, so what the hell? I don't know why the starter suddenly sounds different than when I had it running before, but I know it needed shimming. I loosened it up, shimmed the outside bolt with two thin washers and tried again. Now it sounded like it was binding - I had shimmed it too much. I loosened it again and removed one washer. It sounds better now, but acts like it's "dragging" and this is a brand new starter! At this point I was thoroughly disgusted and disheartened. I walked out of the shop, closed the door behind me, and went in the house. That was in late March...

    Finally, last week, after not touching the '32 for almost 8 weeks, I had a mental revelation. I bought two little non-LED clearance lights for a trailer. I spliced a wire into the rear turn signals and hooked up the clearance lights. Presto! All the turn signals suddenly work like they are supposed to! I have mounted them inside the trunk where they will never be seen, but they make everything work properly including the indicator lights in the dash, so they will be there forever. Now for the starter problem...

    I wanted to get the thing to crank properly. I didn't think it was turning over fast enough to start. I turned the key to "start" and the starter still sounded like it was dragging. After a couple of seconds I stopped, waited a second or so and tried again - still dragging. I went to the trunk to disconnect the battery so I could remove the starter and have it tested. When I touched the negative cable it was too warm; not just a little warm as normal, but too warm. It wasn't hot enough to make a blister, but uncomfortably warm enough to be abnormal. I started feeling the connections and where I had the ground bolted to the frame, the bolt was hot. OK, on a little further investigation I discovered that the bolt I had used was too long. The nut on the bottom had bottomed out on the unthreaded part of the bolt and froze. Sure it felt tight on the two wrenches, but it wasn't holding the cable tight. I replaced the bolt with one a bit shorter (had to cut the other one out) and now the starter works fine.

    So, it turns out that the wiring harness is just fine; it was just a matter of educating myself. Henceforth I will always put at least one set of lights in the system that are NOT LEDs. Also, I guess I will now probably always check for tight bolts when installing cables. Sometimes self-education is frustrating... The good news is I'm ready to get back to work on this thing.
    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  11. #491
    rspears's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J. Robinson View Post
    Henceforth I will always put at least one set of lights in the system that are NOT LEDs.
    Good to see you back at it, Jim, thanks to the mental revelation! And with that henceforth statement, sounds like we can look forward to another build after this one!!
    stovens likes this.
    Roger
    Enjoy the little things in life, and you may look back one day and realize that they were really the BIG things.

  12. #492
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    I don't know, Roger. I never say never, but I have remarked to other people that this will probably be my last build... At 74 I don't know if I have enough stamina and determination left to complete another build. However..,

    I have always dreamed of building a replica of a 1959-'64 Watson Indy roadster. Imagine the attention it would get showing up at a cruise-in in a street-legal 1960s Indy car. I have a copy set of A.J. Watson's original blueprints. All I need is the replica nose and tail cones and I can fabricate everything else... Maybe someday. Gotta finish this one first.
    Jim

    Racing! - Because football, basketball, baseball, and golf require only ONE BALL!

  13. #493
    johnboy is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    A fella I used to work for many many years ago had a little clichť he used to rattle out when things went wrong: "If at first you don't succeed try, try, try a gin."
    Bob Parmenter and Driver50x like this.
    johnboy
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  14. #494
    Bob Parmenter's Avatar
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    I suspect we've all done that "walk away for awhile...." thing. The subconscious mind keeps working on it and eventually connects to the mostly awake brain and we can continue on.

    There's a guy on the HAMB that built a Watson style roadster a few years ago, he's a metal wizard, did a fabulous job. In fact had to do much of it twice because of an accident.
    stovens likes this.
    Your Uncle Bob, Senior Geezer Curmudgeon

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  15. #495
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    Dave Severson, johnboy and stovens like this.
    Your Uncle Bob, Senior Geezer Curmudgeon

    It's much easier to promise someone a "free" ride on the wagon than to urge them to pull it.

    Luck occurs when preparation and opportunity converge.

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