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Thread: Another Build Thread - My '32
          
   
   

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  1. #91
    Hotrod46's Avatar
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    Car Year, Make, Model: 1946 Ford Coupe, 23 T
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    Nice work Jim. The torsion bars look good. Your car is second one I've seen that (that I remember) uses salvage yard bars. Most I've seen use sprint car parts. I think I remember one in a mag years ago that used VW parts.

  2. #92
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    I've looked at sprint car stuff - too expensive for my school teacher pension... My first C-Cab had VW rear torsion bars (pic on page 6) on the front. That car was built in 1976 and is still on the road in Huntsville, Alabama. I also built a cross-torsion bar suspension for the rear of an Anglia (about '78 or '79) using VW rear torsion bars, but I don't know where that one is now... When I built my second C-Cab in 1989 I found the Nissan bars and have been using them since. The Nissan bars are about 6 or 8 inches longer than the VWs and the spline pieces are all removable whereas the VW bars anchor part is welded into the belly pan. This is the 7th application where I have used torsion bars (4th for myself). I really like the adjustability and ride quality they provide.

    Several years ago a friend of mine used the complete cross-torsion front end from a '70s Chrysler LeBaron in a '38 Dodge pickup. It rode and drove beautifully and the ride height was adjustable with a wrench. If I was building a fat-fendered car I would consider using that setup.
    stovens likes this.
    Jim

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

  3. #93
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    I'm anxious to see how you do your steering. Looks like things could be a little tight. I know you have it figured out since you have done it all before. Thank you for a great tech thread

  4. #94
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    Thanks, Figure8. It's my pleasure. Writing this thread kind of helps keep me on task.

    Actually, I do have an idea what I want to do, but I kind of work out the specifics as I go. Yes, the torsion bars do present a couple of challenges to the placement of some components, but I think the ride quality makes it worthwhile. On my coupe I used the steering box from a late '70s Toyota 4WD pickup (some early coupe build pics below). It has a long sector shaft so the body of the gearbox is mounted just above the torsion bar, but the Pittman arm is below it. Those are a bit scarce now days, but I have a steering box from a 1980 Corvette that is almost dimensionally identical to that Toyota, so it's a possibility. The other possibility is a Unisteer style rack and pinion. I can't positively determine which is more practical until I have the engine mounted. Then I will use whichever fits best. I'm using a big block this time, so it may be different than my coupe. Stay tuned...
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    Jim

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

  5. #95
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    The next items on my part fabrication list are the steering arms. Remember, I'm using Speedway Motors spindles and 4 inch dropped forged axle. Speedway has steering arms, but... One set says "not for use with dropped axles". The other ones are flame cut from 1/2 inch steel, but they look like they are only dropped about 3/4 inch. So, I'll need to fabricate some arms that will drop below the frame and torsion bars (I want this thing "in the weeds"!).

    I happened to have a piece of 2 1/2 x 3 angle iron with 5/16 wall thickness. That should be plenty hefty enough. To begin I took some measurements on my Speedway spindles. I needed to know the hole spread and how much clearance would be needed to get around the kingpin boss. With the dimensions in hand, I was able to make a poster board pattern. I also made an additional piece (add on) for the right side so I could put a second hole in it for the cross-steer drag link. If it turns out that I don't need the second hole, I can cut it off later. Using the pattern, I marked and drilled the holes and then marked the pieces for cutting with my oxy-acetylene torch.
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    Jim

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

  6. #96
    J. Robinson's Avatar
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    The next step, of course, is fire up the torch and cut the steering arms out. They really look ugly at this point, but we all know what's next - grinding.., and grinding.., and grinding. Once they were starting to look fairly decent it was time for trial fitting. I found a few little places where I had to relieve some interference for final fitment. Once everything was fitting properly I gave the arms a coat of primer to inhibit rust and also so they would show up better in the pictures.

    Last thing I did was make a temporary tie rod so I can confirm clearances, etc. This tie rod is temporary because later I will weld bungs on the holes and ream them with a tapered reamer so I can use conventional Ford style tie rod ends and a slightly larger diameter tie rod.
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    Whiplash23T likes this.
    Jim

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

  7. #97
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    Thanks so much Jim.
    Following along has been informative and fun.
    Torsion bar suspension isn't the norm for a hot rod, so kudos to thinking outside the box.

  8. #98
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    Since your talking about steering boxes----------on some race cars( Prostockers) I have used the flex haft from I believe a Pinto instead of U-Joints, and also I might add I believe some were also used on some BMWs?-takes up a lot less space around exhaust, oil dry sump pumps, etc
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  9. #99
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    Thanks for the tip, Jerry. I had forgotten about those flexible shafts and that's a good idea. Pintos are as scarce as clams peckers around here (they all got used up in the Ministock wars at the local race tracks), but BMWs are plentiful in the local salvage yards. I'll look for them.
    Jim

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

  10. #100
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    Any progress on the 32 lately Jim?

  11. #101
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    Unfortunately, no progress to report. I got temporarily sidetracked helping my son with his project.

    Just before Christmas he traded his '31 Model-A sedan for a '50 Mercury. It's an old survivor custom with a 3" chopped top, shaved door handles, frenched headlights, etc. During its lifetime someone (probably multiple different owners) spliced wires, cut stuff out, spliced some more until the wiring was crap and nothing worked but the headlights and one taillight. There was evidence of an under-dash fire at some point in its history (melted wires). So far we have installed a new steering column, completely rewired it, installed all new gauges, replaced the fuel sender, changed the alternator, and given it a "temporary" satin black paint job. We still need to go through the carb to get it running right and then it will be roadworthy. The good news is it has a nice green & white Naugahyde interior and a fresh 350 Chevy engine & trans. Hopefully we'll finish his repairs next week and then I'll be back on the Deuce.

    My next step will be installing the rear suspension. I am still trying to decide if I want to use a 4-bar setup or a "truck arm" system like my coupe has. I have all the components for both...
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    Jim

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

  12. #102
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    will you be using torsion bars in the back?

  13. #103
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    I haven't decided yet. I have another set of the Nissan pickup bars that I could use. On the other hand, it would be much easier to use coil-overs. If I use the torsion bars I will likely mount them crossways on a fabricated crossmember above and behind the rear axle. My coupe has '82 Chevette springs in the rear and it rides comfortably, so conventional coils is another option. There are advantages and disadvantages to each system, so I simply haven't decided yet...
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    Jim

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

  14. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by J. Robinson View Post
    I haven't decided yet. I have another set of the Nissan pickup bars that I could use. On the other hand, it would be much easier to use coil-overs. If I use the torsion bars I will likely mount them crossways on a fabricated crossmember above and behind the rear axle. My coupe has '82 Chevette springs in the rear and it rides comfortably, so conventional coils is another option. There are advantages and disadvantages to each system, so I simply haven't decided yet...
    The truck arms (ladder bars) would have more symmetry with the hairpins in front. If you decide not to use the torsion bars I would vote for coil overs. Don't see any advantage to separate coil springs. JMO.
    By the way I read the thread on your T and the fact that you are a professional teacher really shows. Your students are lucky.

  15. #105
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    Your son's new ride sounds pretty cool. It seems the wiring is the first thing hacked and rarely repaired correctly. That's been my luck any how.
    Ryan
    1940 Ford Deluxe Tudor 354 Hemi 46RH Electric Blue w/multi-color flames, Ford 9" Residing in multiple pieces
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    1972 Chevy K30 Longhorn P-pumped 24v Compound Turbos 47RH Just another money pit
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