What am I to expect going from Ruxstell, Z head, New Zeland crank??, 26 engine to a 1912 engine stock? If most T's go around 30-33 comfortably on tours (I think, never drove around with other T's) then is it mainly the sense of power under our feet or going up hills, etc....
The ruxstell is great to have. I'm looking at a 12 rear that was already restored stock. Is it worth it to put in a Ruxstell? Cost and effort?
It's kinda like a true fire / e timer vs coils questions in a different way, but lets keep it civil. I would really like to know. Thanks, Bob
Ps: finally sold the 14 to a very nice gentleman. We ran out of gas on the demonstration drive around the block. But she rode back home beautifully up the hill backwards!
how many hills do you encounter? what body style? the early cars weigh less (assuming no starter etc) and if it is a roadster you may like it just fin
I personally think the Ruckstell will serve you best for hill climbing. Use the standard Ford gear ratio. Some people use a higher ratio, and if you live in flat country and have a light weight car such as a roadster or speedster, it will go faster on level ground, however you will find with a higher ratio, you will need to shift Ruckstell to low range for starting from a stop. It will start in Ford low on level, but very difficult when going uphill. Auxiliary brakes are a must if you use Ruckstell.
I have not used a Z head. I don't see the use for one unless your goal is to go faster, which I reserve for driving modern vehicles.
I also use coils and magnetos on all my cars.
On a 12 with a low head you will have a little extra compression over the 1917 up high head. That bring said, the Z head might give you a margin of extra power and speed when you need it, as in, get out of the way speed. If what I have heard is correct, the higher compression should increase your mileage and run cooler because of quicker burning of the charge.
I think that having a little more power under the hood in today world does not have to mean going faster but being able to keep up. It depends on how often you drive your car, what kind of traffic you have to drive in and what kind of roads you encounter.
On the Ruckstell, if you live in hilly country, you might not need it (depends on the hills) if you add a Z head and a touring grind cam.
I've got both kind of T's. The difference isn't that dramatic. I think that if you are not trying to get somewhere, in other words the trip is the pleasure, not the destination, then a Z head etc. isn't really needed. The differences are going to be noticed in all the "power" situations: hills, acceleration, top end and so on.
Thank you. Acceleration is good too, but mainly I am looking for power going up hills. I do not like the feeling of sluggish low power, then have to apply low gear to finish the hill.
Those I know who have installed a faster ratio with a Ruckstell have gone back to the standard ratio and like it that way best.
With the high speed rear ratio you have to start out in low Ruckstell on level ground if you have any passengers with you. Too much shifting.
When you modify an engine in any manner you only get good results when you change everything and not just one or two related items.
High compression gives more power and better mileage but a cam shaft along with the head will do more than just one or the other. In other words if you get three horsepower form a cam and three horsepower from a head, you may very well get 10 horsepower from both combined.
One of our three sons put two carburetors on a Stock air cooled 1964 V W Bug against my wishes and explanations and only got black smoke and 17 miles to the gallon, but it looked cute.
Our 1913 Model T Touring car had high compression Jahns Pistons, a straight through Holly G carburettor and three to one gears with a Hall Scott Ruckstell and A.C. Brakes. It cruised at 60 and took five adults up and down a four mile long 10 percent grade on Catalina Island very well in 2001 and did it several times. It also went over the Mt. Rose summit on several Reno Tours put on by Bill Harrah in the 1960's.
I would not butcher up a real 1912 axle with a Ruckstell. Get a non-descript axle and modify it. I real 1912 axle is too valuable to modify.
I think that you'll quickly learn what it feels like to drive a Model T.
They are fun and deliver pretty good hill climbing ability in stock configuration. I wouldn't bother with a Ruxtell on A '12 unless I were to start mountain driving.
If you have a NZ crank, I believe yuu can count on a broken crank sooner than later!
The best analysis and description of evaluating the rear axle ratio, raising compression, changing cam, adding a Ruckstell etc. that I have found is on the Tulsa Model T Ford Club site. Their site is at: http://mtfctulsa.com/ Their Tech page is located at: http://mtfctulsa.com/Tech/index.htm
And specific discussions that should help you make a more informed decision are:
Dyno Data - summary of dyno runs at: http://mtfctulsa.com/Tech/DynoSummary.htm
Head info: http://mtfctulsa.com/Tech/heads.htm
Power and Torque – great discussion – for example reducing the weight by 150-200 pounds increases the maximum hill climbing grade by 1 per cent etc.
Fred Houston's 12 steps to a good running Model T for touring http://mtfctulsa.com/Tech/fredslist.htm
Note Royce has worked with several of the earlier engines and states, "One should be aware that Model T blocks cast before about 1916 have very poor metallurgy, it is common to strip out one or more head bolt holes if you go beyond 45 pounds dry torque. Another great reason to make sure the threads are clean and dry." ref: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/80257/117016.html
While not a Model T engine, there is an excellent article on the Model A Fords that explains why you need to do things that work together to improve the engine rather than just putting all your effort into a single “one really big thing.” I.e. Frank’s illustration of putting the two large carburetors on a stock VW bug and gaining little performance and dropping the gas mileage a lot. It also discusses why doubling the compression ratio normally will not double the horsepower. In theory it will – but theories seldom work perfectly in the real world. See: http://www.amuffler.com/dyno/dyno1.htm
Good luck with your new T. As others have mentioned – take good care of your 1912.
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