Which carb would YOU run ? My wife's car is powered by a '27 motor that is a fresh rebuild. No mag ring or magnets, stipe 260 cam, Alum pistons, Z head oversize valves. Not looking to go hill climbing but rather DEPENDABILITY and easy starting desired with Performance as well. My choices....Brand new performance carb like MAC'S sells that runs off a fuel pump ( this car has a new fuel pump on it as tank is low in frame ) A rebuilt Stromberg "OF" or ?? I have numerous Kingston & Holley carbs but no straight thru NH's....We drive on fairly flat country with small hills no mountains or long grades.
Ed, as the old adage goes, "Speed costs money. How fast do you want to go?" Seriously, I guess it boils down to how fast and exotic to you want to get. A "putt around" speedster can get around on one Holley NH. The next step would be a high flow intake with a straight through carb (Holley, Wizard, or Simmons). Next step would be a Stromberg OF or similar. Next step would be a Model A or B intake, exhaust, and carb. Next step would be the same substituting a Stromberg OE updraft for a Tillotson or Zenith A carb. Then you get into custom multiple carb setups which probably wouldn't be the best for you unless you switch to an OHV head and/or a very free flowing exhaust. Don't get discouraged if anything that you try doesn't work. Sometimes parts, particularly old ones must be rebuilt to very high standards to work as desired. I have had had some people tell me that a certain carb is too much and won't run properly, and had other people tell me that the same carb will "run like stink". Good luck.
See these threads: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/46038.html?1205330875
Kent Sumner runs double Holley NH carbs on his speedster. Cheap & fun but hard to synchronize at times.
I forgot to mention...sorry. Exhaust is one of Chaffins "dual pipe exhausts and intake on the car is early alum dog leg that we polished the interior as much as possible and opened it up another 1/8"in diameter. Don't want to run duals, I played with twin and triple "SU" carbs on my "D" production racing Healey for years and "NO thats not what I want. Wife must be able to go out on her own....no tools and or expertise.
An OF will run well but may not be quite as much carb as you want. A slightly larger throat carb running on the stock dogleg intake will probably give you what you want. I'd recommend a Stromberg OS-1 or OD-1. I'd recommend the OS-1 over the OD-1 simply because it has a less complicated economizer system. They look cool, they run great, they start easily and are easy to adjust. There are also some T accessory carbs that run great on speedster type engines that aren't full blown speedsters. These either bolt directly to a T manifold or have their own manifold that replaces the T manifold. An excellent all around carb is a Rayfield side draft. They are hard to find but run great. Zenith made a setup that replaced the manifold and ran the T version of the Zenith 04. Almost impossible to find in excellent condition but run very well.
There were somewhere around 200 accessory carbs built for the Model T. Virtually every one was an improvement over the stock carbs prior to the NH and after the 4 ball. NH's run fine, Kingston L-4's run fine, there are a lot of people who rebuild NH's to above factory specs and there are several people who specialize in restoring/buying/selling proper period carbs. (Why the vendors think it is necessary to sell lawn mower carbs for T's escapes me and why people want to run them instead of a good T carb escapes me.)
I think an OE-1 or similar updraft would also be an excellent choice for your car but the early updrafts do have a tendency to drip a little gas on shutdown unless you are running heat on the manifold. It is because of the acellerating well in Stomberg, the enrichment circuit in Zeniths, etc. Updrafts require a dedicated manifold but they are not hard to find. Personally, I don't like Model A carbs and manifolds on T's. I don't think they look right and there are lots of T accessory manifolds.
One of the best of all choices for an updraft, IMHO, is the U & J accessory T carb. They are simple beyond belief, run like stink, have only one adjustment and don't leak. They all have problems with the bowl cracking so I replace the bowl with a more substantial one, they have a cork float so I make new floats for them and from there on out they are trouble free. Hard to find and not cheap but look cool, run great and are simple to operate. No dash adjustment on any of my recommendations.
Lots of pics and ideas at www.strombergof.com
There are lots of choices and ideas, I'm sure other guys have some good thoughts -- just don't waste your money on lawn mower carburetors when there are so many better choices.
How about a Winfield?
Here are a few impressions from personal experience. I have many other carbs but these are the ones I have run. Your mileage may vary.
I have subjectively listed the carbs from least to most powerful.
D&B (Harrington) unrestored – starts really easy, idles better than any carb I have used. Not as good as NHs for power. This carb has a lever operated variable venturi.
Holley NH Swayback – starts easy, runs well, idles well, gives you opportunities to tweak the mixture.
Stromberg OF – starts well, idles well, set it up properly and forget it. Smooth acceleration. I haven’t done an objective comparison but I believe the straight-through NH would have a better top end. Stan Howe is the world expert on the OF.
Stromberg RF - Hard to find in restorable condition. Similar in performance to OF but has a better float set up (my opinion).
Marvel – the one I tried was not rebuilt. It had good power. Maybe someone else who has had driving experience with a good Marvel can comment.
Holley NH Straight-through – doesn’t start quite as easy as the swayback but starting is not a problem, idles just fine, better top end and hill climbing than swayback, gives you opportunities to tweak the mixture.
Simmons Super Power – the one I tried had a piece broken out of the flapper valve so it didn’t idle. At the top end it ran similar to the NH straight through. I think with some modification this could be a hot carb.
U&J – mine has a cracked venturi (strangling tube) so it doesn’t idle well. This carb really goes. I am currently rebuilding the venturi and plan to use this carb on my cruiser for touring. It also looks neat on a speedster.
Winfield H – by far the fasted carb I have run and I have run it for several years. I set it to a fast idle because it stumbles when I stop fast. My setup is attached to a high flow manifold that was modified to fit the Winfield bolt pattern and to provide engine clearance. This one is for sale.
Your results may vary based on cam and ignition timing, compression etc.
I've run a Winfield 5H most of the time with the Fronty.
I put it on an elbow to make room for aircleaner.
A couple other things to note. Car has Am Bosch front plate Ign. Manifolds are installed after a whole lot of PIA work and I would just as soon not have to pull everything off now that alignment is good on the manifolds...so that makes me lean towards something to go on the stock style manifold. Also wife is not one to do any tinkering so If I send her off on her own car must get to the destination without calling me !!! I have NH's in stock, l4's anf 2 & 3 screw Holleys. Do you really think an NH will have enough venturi ??
No. An NH on your setup will pretty much negate all the gain you get from what you have done. Before somebody offers the argument that the Montana 500 guys run swayback NH's let me point out that it is to make the cars slower, not faster. They found out long ago that there are all sorts of carbs that will make a T go faster than they want to go. Plus, the fact that NH is the stock T carb, accessory carbs are just that, accessories.
A Stromberg OS-1 or OD-1 will bolt to your manifold with a 90* adapter, a Rayfield will bolt right on, a Stromberg OF will run much better but not have so much top end as they run out of capacity at higher speeds.
Personally, I do not like Winfield carbs, not because of how they run but because of what they are made from. Some are aluminum but most are pot metal and they are too easy to break and tend to warp pretty badly. They do run well but I don't work on them or recommend them because they have parts made of unobtanium and ezebreakium.
We run a Stromberg 03 on our speedster. It might be a little too large of a carburator.
One of the biggest differences you can make is a high flow/volume intake.
Here's my setup. I run twin Walbro WHC's as sold by Texas T Parts. The manifold is a home built setup with no crossover. Once the carbs are sync'd they seem to stay in sync until I do something to mess things up. Adjustments are done in very small increments as just a little change in setting seems to make a big difference. I really like the low speed and high speed adjustment capability of these carbs. The drawback to these carbs is that I get alot of ribbing from some of the other speedster guys about stealing carbs from lawnmowers & such.
I am running a 28 Chevy conversion. I have tried single NH and dual NH's. The single starved out and the duals worked great for a time but getting them in balance is a chore.
I got an OE-1 on eBay and sent it to Stan Howe for a facelift. On my setup it is the cat's patootee! Acceleration response is unbelievable and it will feed as long as the engine can take it.
It frosts up and I am working on a heat delivery system. I imagine this will only improve the performance.
What about the earlier Stromberg "LF"? I just bought one of these because it was cheap, but I admit I don't know much about them. What are its strengths and weaknesses? How would it compare to the straight-through NH that's on my car now?
What would be best on a OHV or OHC head? I have a OE1, needs your attention,I'm thinking about for one of my T-GO heads or go with two OF's. The OHC heads are 4 ports so the manifold would take some time to make.
Mark, they would have about the same flow, I think, but two OF's would look really cool. The other alternative since you are building the manifold anyway would be two OS-1's. They are the size of an OE-1 but are side draft and run like an annular ringed posterior primate. They have just enough linkage so you can see the economizer open and close but the rest is straightforward. They are my favorite carb for larger than OF installations. Two might be a little too big but I don't think so. I have a bunch of them running on speedsters most single but a couple sets of doubles. They are great carbs. Vertical flange.
Derek, the LF is not a bad carb, better than an NH or L4, the big problem with them is that the mixtures adjustment threads into the body of the carb and over time it wears the threads to where they leak air around them, making it hard to adjust the mixture. The mixture knob takes a little figuring out, too and is easy to break or ruin. Other than that, they are a good carb but not for a speedster. They just don't have enough flow. The OF was an improvement in every way.
I am still having computer problems and am back on my laptop again so I don't have access to a lot of my pictures on my computer and I can't post them here. So............. Here is a link to a page on my web site that has pics of OS-1's on it. If you scroll down a little you will see a set of matching Rayfields that will make an engine stand up an HONK!!!! They are great carbs, trouble free and easy to adjust and keep in adjustment. I also have a set of larger Rayfields in mirror image (one bowl is to the left of the body, one is to the right) pics of those are on the site, too. This is the only set of Rayfields like this I have ever seen. There are not many side draft Rayfields around, Stromberg OF's probably outsold them 100 to 1.
Carl, thanks for the compliment. The OE-1's have a little trouble with icing up in humid conditions due to the small acellerating well venturi.
Stromberg's big claim to fame in the early 20's when the OE-1, OS-1, OX-2 series of carbs came out was the acellerating well. This is the tube you can see on the side of the OE-1 (it's built into the OS-1 and is the cone on the side of the OX-2 and similar carbs) that is their answer to the problem of giving the engine an additional supply of fuel under rapid acelleration. Gas is drawn up into the well by engine vacuum ahead of the throttle plate and held there, balanced by an air bleeder, until the throttle plate is opened and the vacuum drops in the throat. At that point the fuel is drawn into a small venturi with very high flow to add a charge of fuel quickly to the engine for rapid acelleration. It works better than you can believe. The downside is that upon shutdown they lose the vacuum holding the fuel in the tube and it will leak down into the choke area where there is a storage area that pools the fuel for the next startup, negating the necessity of using the choke when the engine is warm. There is a small drain hole to keep the storage area from overflowing and a few drops of gas will sometimes drip from that hole. It is part of the design, there is nothing that can be done about it. Adding carb heat will keep the intake area hot and the gas will vaporize before dripping out or at least that is the idea.
The side drafts do not have the leaking problem since the acellerating well is below the venturi and gas is held in it after engine shutdown. The OE series came in OE-1, OE-2 and OE-3. The OS came in only OS-1 and OS-2. I just sold an OS-2 for a 1917 Mitchell, they are HARD to find. The OS-1 is hard enough, the OS-2 is darn near impossible.
Ivan, I would think your car would run better with an OE-2 or O-2. I would think the venturi and throat would be so large on an OE-3 that starting and throttle response would be slow. Too big a carb is at least as much and maybe more of a problem than too small.
Here is the link to the set of mirror image Rayfields. http://www.strombergof.com/Stromberg_RF_Photos.php
Some carbs that came with my project. (2) OF's, (1) RF, a mystery manifold. Big question: is the back one a Rayfield?
Thanks for all the ideas. I have deceided to go with one of Stan's rebuilt Rayfields.
That manifold looks like a U&J.
My recommendation for a good reliable carb for your wife's speedster would be either an NH, a Stromberg OF, or a U&J. The lawn mower carbs are fine if you have a lawn mower engine in your T.
How about a Wheeler-Schebler FA? It's a set it and leave it carb. It has a good size venture/throat and seems to move the car right along. The only drawback I can think of is the float valve setup. They are a bit more rare then the Stromberg's.
I ran an FA in the 1999 Greatrace. It had more top end power than the OF I ran the previous year, but seemed to use more gas.
I would run a stromberg MB 1 if you can find one . Ran cross country in 84 . Ran great run them all the time .
Here's the MB-1 I ran temporarily while rebuilding the aluminum Winfield 5H:
Don't forget to put on an aircleaner or inlet screen, or...
I keep an extinguisher in the back. First time I've had to use on on my own car.