Does anyone have a good example of a manifold heater, and do they work? Any photos, descriptions, or other experience appreciated.
I have been wondering the same thing. I am hoping to be able to heat my Tudor for winter driving here in Ohio.
I have a cast iron, waffle type on our 1919 Centerdoor with a small, adjustable floor register that my wife can kick open and closed with her toes. Works great ! I'll try and get a couple photos tomorrow for you all.
There are previous threads with pictures. Here are some links :
I've got one that I picked up at a auction this fall that is a cast iron manifold with fins on it. It has holes for a shroud to cover it, but the shroud is missing and the threads might clean up, but I'm not sure. It was worth the 5 bucks that I paid it just for conversation. I'll try to make it up into the woods (where it is stored) and take a photo this weekend.
There was a post some time back where someone was working on reproductions of this heater. Does anyone remember who it was that was doing it and has anyone heard about any progress lately? I would be interested in buying one if/when they become available.
Thanks Seth, I just looked back and then sent Bob an e mail to ask for some update on the project. Guess I should have done that first before asking the question.
Hope you are doign well and wishing you and yours a Very Blessed and Merry Christmas.
I have one of those T manifold style heater manifolds for sale similar to an A, sheet metal part gone, EXCELLENT threads, check out FORDBARN a few days back, we lost electric here Sat a.m., didn't get it till Tues p.m., LOTS of ICE, but as I snowplow, and spread salt it helps with $$$.
Thanks Tom! To you and yours the same!
Sorry for not getting this heater project to the final stages. I did make up the rectangular floor grate like the Kunkel vent with a closing vent door but the final position in the floor had it right next the heel panel on my 22 coupe which I was using to check position. At that point I started to rework the floor vent design going with a circular one, still not cast, just a wooden pattern so far.
You start to see why a lot of these early accessories are found in their original boxes, since they never really worked correctly and never sold which might have been the problem with this design.
However, the one that was on ebay and on the cars of Tim's and Alan's which are shown in the first articles is probably a better design. The use of metal flex tubing will allows placing both a vent in the front and back of a two seater or a single vent in a single seater plus the position of the vent can be varied by just cutting the tubing to length or sliding the end castings to a position desired.
Problem with doing projects like this is the amount of time required. You can spend a couple days working on patterns, casting and machining on a design only to have it not work in the final test. Couple that with all the hoopla over poor reproductions and transactions gone bad and so not wanting to get on that list I have stopped trying to do anymore new T projects and am staying with just ones that have sold and that don't have any major problems to speak of. Bob
If heat is more important than authenticity, home improvement stores sell flexible aluminum gas furnace vent (not the aluminum dryer vent - big difference). That, some tin snips, a scroll saw, and a small decorative floor vent should do the trick. I'm planning something like this using a spare floorboard to preserve the original, possibly with a 6-volt fan if I can find one. The whole thing could be easily pulled out for summer, restoring the original floorboard.
I wonder, does anybody just use a small propane tent type heater of any kind. It could just be set on the rear floor, maybe in a temp type bracket in winter or something to that effect. Something portable, and easily removed. Just used in really cold weather. Just thinking outloud.
something like this:
tim, my TT has enough vent holes in the floor around the pedals, etc, that all I gotta do is have a warm engine!
You guys just have your T's too airtight!
see this item # on ebay or anything similar... cheap and isn't flammable.
If you need 6V, then I would suggest you upconvert using a DC to DC converter.
Does anybody remember "The Real McCoys" with Walter Brennan, they had a Model A Phaeton. One show they talked about putting a bucket of Hot coals on the floor board.
The 22 coupe had a cast iron sleeve that clamps onto the exhaust pipe & goes up to a floor register, I removed it because, out here, you could have baked bread with the windows open.
Tim, in days of yore, I have been known to use a Coleman gas lantern, got warm, but too much glare and light, I have also used the propane heaters in vehicles and farm and construction machinery, I am sure it would kill you in a vehicle that was pretty tight, but I never had one of those, Merry Christmas.
My RFD dad had a charcoal foot warmer (on Ebay occassionaly) and a big racoon coat and hat that he used in his Model T Snowmobile.
What happens to the charcoal or gas heaters if you are involved in an accident. I can imagine hot coals all over the floor..or you, if the car was tipped or broadsided. That is also more likely to happen while driving on icy roads! I also wonder how well the gas cap on the 10 gallons under the front seat would keep the gas from spilling out onto the same hot coals or coleman heater. I'd prefer engine heat!
I am very sorry to hear that you have pulled back on this and other ventures. Sure wish I could find a way to encourage you to continue your efforts. Your skills and capabilities are not easily found elsewhere. While I understand your concerns, and there are a lot of folks that like to critique the repro parts, the simple fact is that without them most of us would have piles of rusty parts rather than operable vehicles that we enjoy so much.
If I can in any way assist your efforts or find a way to convince you to continue adding your value to the T community I would be willing to do so.
I am sure there are many others that feel the same way and I wish that they would speak up loud and above the noise that the critics are making on these issues. We always hear the squeaky wheels and rarely get to hear the majority.
Thanks for all you have done for us.
Mr.Scherzer,It is highly doubtfull you would produce a poor quality part or hoodoo anyone buying it in my opinion.You have to remember the bad deals we read about are only done by a select few people,not the majority.Poor parts come from those who have no real intrest in the hobby,just contracting a job from someone else and takeing the money.
So Dont give up provideing the T hobbiest with parts.
I agree with Tom and Mack. Bob's reproduction items have a reputation for their excellent quality, and I'm sure there would be no difference here.
Besides, I think that a well made manifold heater would sell like hotcakes (pardon the pun, please!)
I just looked up that electric heater on Ebay, and it looks a lot like a unit I bought a few years ago when I had a car with a broken heater. Well, the one I had was a waste of money. Even with it in my lap, the heat it gave off was minimal at best....
My wife complained about being cold on a fall tour i could not understand just because we had wet snow ,sleet and rain why she would be cold in a closed car (ha) so i bought a twelve volt electric blanket from Cabelas you can even sit on it,so hopefully no more complaints(like that will happen).Remember i use two batteries in my coupe.
Having 12 volts is the way to go since so many folks cannot do without their cellphones and GPS units and other modern conveniences when driving their Ts.
Having dual Group 1 six volt batteries with only one of them connected to the starter is also the way to go, IMO.
Finding a convenient spot for securing that second battery is another story unless you have a T with a trunk. Do you know of a convenient spot to put a second Group 1 battery in a '24 Touring car - just picking a convenient example?
Seth - It would be kinda' "spendy", but keeping in mind the compact size of a 6 volt (3 cell) Optima battery, I'm thinking that a pair of 6 volt Optima's side-by-side in the stock battery holder would be a pretty slick way to go. And they're maintenance free too!......harold
I didn't realize that the 6 volt Optima was half width. I figured it contained 6 cells and was wired so that there were two 6 volt (3 cell) batteries in parallel.
You might check how wide and long they really are because a Group 1 six volt battery isn't but 6.875" wide - meaning that 6 volt Optima best be narrower than 3.5" and no longer than 8.875". It could probably be taller than a Group 1 battery, which is 8 3/4" because on my car I had to add a piece of 3/4" thick oak to bring the battery up high enough for the holddown clamps to actually hold down the battery.
My car may have the battery carrier for the boxed battery though that isn't what I ordered. It was too late when I found out since I had modified it to clear my already installed muffler. See attached pics.
Harold, the Optima website gives 9 3/4" as the length of their battery. My battery carrier has a measurement of 9 1/2" in length, so it may (?) be a little tight there. The width (3 1/2" x 2) and height (8.2") measurements look like a good fit, however.
I really don't an Optima battery Seth, so I can't really check dimensions; it was just a "wild idea" I had after reading your post. I do know that the 6 volt Optima IS half the width (and half the cells) of the 12 volt Optima and it is very compact. One of the guys in our club has a 6 volt Optima in his T, mounted under the seat, next to the gas tank believe it or not. He's on a "budget" like me, and he told me that that's the way he "opted" (no pun intended) to "fix" his generator. He's had the optima for a couple years and he says he runs all summer on one charge and that he just may never bother to fix the generator. They really ARE worth the cost I guess,....harold
Thanks Bob; I was "posting" at the same time you were,...harold
Hey Rob, we really didn 't mean to steal you thread on manifold heaters. Getting back to that, I think I'm one of many that would like to see Bob continue his efforts on the manifold heater. I don't know about others, but that's an accessory that just might make the difference between my wife riding around in the T with me in chilly weather. She loves riding in it with me but she's definately a "fair weather tourer"!
Well, being pricey certainly doesn't help selling to this crowd! LOL
Since I've managed to steal this thread of Rob's, I had best apologize to Rob and ask that this discussion be either reopened in another thread or handled via e-mail or private message.
I apologize for hijacking your manifold heater thread.
Thought I would show the updates on the heater project I was working on and how it has some possible problems.
This first picture shows the tube that clamps on the exhaust pipe. Didn't clamp on the bottom half for these pictures.
Now with the vent placed over the opening.
As you can see the floorboard has to be cut or better yet just replaced with a plywood floorboard since the right side of the board has no support and will need a board added on the bottom for extra support at this point. The original board's support board or strap on the bottom is in the way if you try to use your original.
If you made up a plywood floorboard for this heater you could then replace the original for summer use by just lift off the vent along with the floorboard and plug the tube hole with insulation and replace the old board.
My heater vent design didn't take into account the heel panel so I will have to rework my pattern and cast up another one that will.
I couldn't find the machined aluminum slider and had to use the wooden pattern to show it in an opened and then closed position. No knob yet. These are all prototype castings at this stage and still unfinished.
After looking at this set up do you see any other problems that need to be addressed before committing to this rectangular vent design or would it be better to switch to a circular design which could give more floor support. Or is this project just another dead horse that no one wants to ride anyway? Bob
I would ride that dead horse since I like to drive my T year round. I have a 1927 Tudor.
I don't care what it costs, I WANT A GOOD ALTERNATIVE to freezing in the winter. Thanks guys for apoligizing for "hijacking" the thread, but that is not a problem. I always enjoy reading about other issues.
Bottom line, someone should be able (of course I am not able, or this wouldn't be a thread) to make a Model A style manifold heater. It might be just tin surrounding the manifold, with an opening at the front (fan), and a way to introduce the air flow into the cab, or some other way to use the engine heat to keep us (and more importantly our loved ones, cause we'll drive the damn things no matter what) somewhat warm in the winter.
Thanks, and of course, Merry Christmas,
I dug this out today, not much need for it in East Texas. In the 60's we used a gallon can with a roll of toilet papper and white gas in the floor.
How about a "South Wind" gas heater? wouldn't that be an easier fix? That should be a straight forward installation. That's only a little out of the T era.
Take a look at the little propane heaters they use in golf carts. I saw them on Gbay.
Bob, even though I only have a touring car with side curtains, I would be interested in one of your heaters. I like to drive the car in the winter (we had a high of 22 F today, the T stayed in the garage!), and I could use all the help I can get!
Would the round-design duct be easier to make? Whichever is less complicated would get my vote.
Rob my only reason for trying to get this style heater to work was the T manifold is known for its warping and losing a tight seal and to then leak exhaust gases and having them going into the passenger compartment had me concerned. The Model A heaters were part of the exhaust manifold casting with a cap fitting over the top plus the Model A manifold didn't have the warping problems. This Model A heater design almost eliminated an exhaust gases getting drawn into the cab and were good heaters.
The other reason was using an easily replaceable floorboard instead of cutting the firewall for the vent. Although flex tubing could be used and routed down under to use the floorboard also.
This cast tube design doesn't have heated air coming from an area were exhaust gas might enter except if you had a badly rusted exhaust pipe that had holes.
Bob the round vent probably isn't anymore complicated then the rectangular one it's just that I have to make up new patterns, cast and then check them out for fit. Given my work load right now is causing a scheduling problem as to when I can do this.
I still have these to get done. Bob
That looks like a dandy heater to me!
Bob - I sure hope you "hang in there" and perfect this heater; it looks like a dandy to me. I'd sure buy one for one of my '23's; probably the roadster as it would have a smaller area to heat and only 2 side curtains. As for the possibility of a rusted out exhaust pipe like you mentioned, this looks like the perfect reason to install one of the now available stainless exhaust pipes,...harold
I like the design you have. Was thinking that the shape does not really matter however if it was sized so that it woudl fit in a whole cut in the floorboard and not at the edge of the floorboard it might be better. Not sure if I am clear here but my thought is to not require more boards to support the edges of the floorboard. Also the use of flex tube might allow placement of the vent higher up on the floorboard more like a modern car location. I really like the idea of being able to locate a second vent in the back seat.
I will try to work up a sketch or two and send it to you. Might be a few days since I am in teh middle of a mechanical rebuild on my Touring car. New engine and front axle is in, willbe pulling teh differential out today for a good look and rebuild.
Thanks for hanging in there. We all understand those other priorities as well.
Here's the heater that I think would be the easiest to reproduce given the need to have different locations for the vents. So far I have just used my 22 coupe for a vent location using my heater set up since that's the car that I was going to outfit with one. However, touring/roadsters may need to have a different position and also for center doors and the later cars.
So if anyone has one of these heaters that I could use to make up some master patterns for casting this would save time in making patterns up from scratch which I don't have the time to do right now. The tubing is an over the counter item so just the vents and tube ends would have to be cast. Bob
Hey Steve (Tomaso) - I've been kinda' watch'n for those photos you were gonna' post in regard to the type of manifold heater you have. Got too busy Christmas shopp'n and stuff, huh? Yeah, yeah, I know,....just give ya' a call and make an "appointment" and come up to your shop and look at it, right? Ha, ha,.....harold
I'll get them in the morning !