Front Wishbone Question

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2005: Front Wishbone Question
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By larry on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 08:40 pm:

I have the front end with springs and all on the front cros menber and ran into a NEW problem
When i put on the front radious rod [wishbone]on the car i cant reach the ball conection on the bottom of the pan
I have to lever the front axle against the spring to go up on the ball joint.
Is this normal or do i need to bend the front cros menber to the rear a bit to release the stress on the ball and springs
thank You Larry


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bob Cascisa on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 08:46 pm:

Larry,

Two possibilities come to mind. Check to see if the spring perches are not backwards and check to see if the axel is in backwards. Both can effect the wishbone alignment.

Bs_Zero_Be


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Patrick - (2) '26's - Bartow, FL on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 09:35 pm:

Bob. Doesn't Larry say the wishbone ball does not reach the ball socket? If so, I would interpret this to mean that the axle is slanted too far forward. Correct me if I'm wrong, but, if the axle were put in correctly, the axle would be slanted forward, not backward, so that if a vertical line were drawn down the center of the radiator from fill cap to base, the the wheels would be slightly forward of the center line. If the axle were in backwards, wouldn't the wheels be behind the centerline, with the spring slanted inward, positioning the wishbone ball too far back and past the ball socket? This is just the opposite of Larry's problem.

I would suggest that Larry probably has the axle installed correctly but locked at the wrong angle, since the ball is forward of the socket. That he tightened the spring clamp, locking the axle too far forward, before connecting up the wishbone to the ball socket. I would suggest that he loosen the center spring clamp and pull the axle back until the ball is positioned in the socket, install and tighten the ball socket cap, then tighten the center spring clamp, locking the spring and axle at the correct angle. Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jeff rey L. Vietzke on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 10:32 pm:

I think that the caster angle (tilt) of the axle could effect the positioning of the wishbone either way, depending on what year the car is. On my T, the wishbone mounts to the top of the axle (1915), so if my axle were in backwards, the ball would theoretically not reach the mount. I think Jim is seeing it from the perspective of a "modern" T owner, with the wishbone on the bottom of the axle. The wheelbase is 100 inches, I believe. I would measure it and go from there. Don't force anything...take your time and look at the axle/spring perches from all angles. You'll get it fixed. Good Luck
Jeff


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By larry on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 12:32 am:

Thank You All for your help ,I tried the loosening of the spring clamp and then install the ball Then tightening the clamp it worked better.
I did put a large pipe wrench on the front cross and forced it back by standing on the end of the wrench ,.It kinda tilted the front cross towards the back some
Thanks Again ....Larry


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Patrick - (2) '26's - Bartow, FL on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 07:05 am:

Congratulations Larry. We knew you could do it. Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 07:34 am:

Larry,

In general, it should fit together without having to use a lot of force. I.e. if you are pushing hard with a hydraulic jack or come along etc. then something probably is bent, out of place, etc. somewhere. And yes, things probably have been bent over the years and may need adjusting.

Key question: Was the engine, front axle, chassis, etc. originally together and did it drive ok? (i.e. was it all one car at one time or are you building up a car from various sources (that is ok – but if you mix and match certain Ford parts with other year Ford parts or put them in the wrong place they don’t work properly.)

Did you rebuild the axle, I.e. did you remove the spring perches or did you remove the spindles and the wishbone? If you did either of those you have a 50/50 chance of installing them wrong when you reassemble them. (If you assemble the front axle from additional parts the chances of assembling it incorrectly go up a little as you can put two left spring perches or two right spring perches or the correct right and correct left on the wrong side of the axle and cause the caster to be negative and the car to be dangerous.

If you go to the thread at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/40382.html it has a good explanation of how to check the caster of the front axle. I suspect when you check it, it will be negative. If so – you probably have one or more of the following items installed incorrectly: spring perch or perches; spindles and/or spindle arms/

If the caster is ok – it should be safe. But I would suggest you have

Note the axle itself does not have a front or back. The front or back is determined by the way the spindles and spring perches are installed.

Another person commented that if you have a 4 dip pan, the mounting ball area is often bent.

Respectfully submitted,

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout (same general design front axle alignment). Sumter SC.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By R.V. Anderson on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 08:03 am:

With the engine in the car, the wheels on, and the wishbone ball disconnected, the engine weight will tend to push the axle's bottom edge forward because of the front spring being clamped at the top. This will naturally cause a gap between the ball and its socket, especially on the later cars. Just hook a chain and a turnbuckle to the axle's bottom "ledge" and pull the axle back until the wishbone ball aligns.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Michael Pawelek on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 08:08 am:

Larry, With the ball out of the socket the weight of the engine and front end can tilt the front axle and springs a bit forward from where they usually sit and on the last 3 out of 4 engine installs I have had to use a "come-a-long" from the front axle to the rear differential to pull the front axle slightly back so that the ball would slip into the socket on the engine pan. On all of these Model T's everything was in good shape when the engines were taken out and were driven regularly without problems so I knew there was nothing wrong with the front ends. I think the condition and how tight the front springs and perches are determines if the ball slips into the socket easily.....Michael Pawelek


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Patrick - (2) '26's - Bartow, FL on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 09:00 am:

When the Model T was new the spring fit snug in the front cross member channel, with each side of the channel exactly vertical. Over the years, various factors could have affected this channel. When I got my first Model T in 1970, the threads of the center spring clamp had been stripped, allowing the spring to move to and fro, which substantially opened up the channel, so that the front and rear sides of the channel were angled away from the spring. When I restored the chassis, before repainting, I took a sledge hammer and closed each side of the channel to vertical and back to the width it was when new, until it was slightly wider than the width of the springs so the spring was held upright, with slight play between the front and back channel walls and the spring. You may need to do this as well, if your axle camber (tilt) is too far forward, as a result of the spring being tilted instead of exactly upright. Jim

PS. Using the next smaller sized tap, I re-threaded my spring clamp threads so, even though it uses a slightly smaller nut than originally, it works perfectly.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Richard Gould on Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 09:44 am:

Larry, you did the right thing. Its always good practice to loosen the front motor mount when installing the radius rod, thus allowing the ball to move to the correct position without binding. After the ball is in the socket and the cap is installed then tighten the nuts on the motor mount.


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