Boattail speedsters: where does the gas tank go, and is the back a "trunk?"

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2013: Boattail speedsters: where does the gas tank go, and is the back a "trunk?"
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Matthew Atchinson on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 12:42 pm:

I've always wondered about the set up for a boattail speedster: just how and where does the gas tank sit? How do you fill it? I rarely see a cap on the back to fill it. Even if there was, how does it fit in there? Also, is there a way to use the back tail of the boattail as a trunk to store stuff like the standard T tool box and a couple gallons of water in case of a break-down? Is there a circular trunk lid/latch or something? I think i've seen something like that on a mercury body before.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walt Berdan, Bellevue, WA on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 01:25 pm:

Some of the early bodies had a small hatch cover to the trunk space. Check out the Paco at http://www.nwvs.org/CarPhotos/002A/002A.shtml I'm not sure where the fuel tank is on it but suspect it is in the trunk area.

On my car, http://www.nwvs.org/CarPhotos/033/033.shtml and http://www.nwvs.org/CarPhotos/033/118NewBody.shtml the fuel tank is a stock round T tank and is behind the seat and there is a full opening trunk lid. For one with the right skills, that I don't have, the body of my car could easily have been steel or aluminum.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 01:52 pm:

Matthew,

My boattail has the 9 gallon oval tank running lengthwise in the tail. There is a filler neck on the outside of the tail with wire reinforced, gasoline duty hose connecting it to the tank. I have two triangular shaped tool boxes mounted on each side of the tank, following the taper of the tail. Some people have the same or similar set-up but with the stock filler cap, which means they have to tip the seat-back ahead to access the tank. I've also seen the trunk mounted Coupe style tanks used.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ken Kopsky, Lytle TX on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 01:54 pm:

I picked up an all steel tank from the salvage yard a few years ago. I think it went to some type of tractor or lawn tractor. I spotted it and thought at that time it would make a good behind the seat tank. It's shaped like the drawing below with the fill on top and two brackets to bolt to a wall. (I don't have a picture.)

Behind the seat tank


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bob Gruber- Spanaway, Wash. on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 02:06 pm:

In my all wood boattail body I made an 8 gallon tank ahead of the dash ala '26-7 T.
Filler cap outside ala Model A.
I have tools and battery, etc. in the tail.
I don't know if I'm getting dumber or if the routine has changed, but I can't get pics to post any more.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 02:29 pm:

There are so many different bodies out there, it really makes a difference on who built it. Many Paco and Mercury bodies have small trunk lids for access to the tail storage area. Many of them have the gasoline tank in that area also. Some, like my current car, have a seat back cushion that lifts out for access to that area. A good friend of mine had a Faultless that was this way. Some of the later Faultless or Bulldog bodies had the gasoline tank in the cowl like the '26/'27 T cars.

These two photos. One shows my son and I working on a vacuum tank breakdown. The seat cushion can be seen laying on the back of the car. The gasoline tank end can be seen in the back. Believe me, it was not designed for modern service station EPA nozzles, however so far, they have all worked. I do carry a plumbing off-set that I made just in case I run into a nozzle that won't reach the tank.



This one shows the car during restoration with the gasoline tank mounted on the new wood structure. For this car, a vacuum tank is used to draw the gasoline up to the front for the carburetor because the fuel tank is so low and far back. Many such cars use a pressurized tank to push the fuel up to the carburetor. Both methods were used back in their day and are correct for today.



The original Champion bodied boat-tail roadster that I used to have had an extra large opening around the seat. The gasoline tank on that car was placed cross-ways behind the seat in the front of the tail (a little easier to put gas into). Stuff could be put behind the tank as well as between the seat and tank. I don't have any good photos of it.
Many of the boat-tails seen today are modern built. Some of them patterned after original cars and are really nice. A lot of them are patterned after someone else's idea that wasn't right to begin with. To be clear, there were a lot of poorly built boat-tail type speedsters built way back when also.
If you are interested in building one, the first thing you should do is look at as many up close as you can. Also, you should look at as many photos as you can. Original photos especially to get a real idea of what was commonly done originally.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank Harris from Long Beach & Big Bear on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 03:17 pm:

Are you speaking of boat tails or torpedo type with a tail cone ? Here is a picture of a boat tail.

boat tail




Later Speedster bodies used the vent in the cowl to get to the tank located under the cowl as a 26-27


Here is the gas tank in a torpedo type Speedster, these are not boat tails because they look nothing like the tail of a boat. If the filler pipe is no ton the side you simply tip the seat forward to get to the filler pipe.


gas




gas tank





Later Speedster bodies used the vent in the cowl to get to the tank located under the cowl as a 26-27.



gas tank


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Matthew Atchinson on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 04:13 pm:

Thanks for the responses guys: you all managed to answer the questions I had. I was always curious as to how it worked. Wayne, with how low yours is the vacuum tank makes a lot of sense. I wonder if there's some sort of mechanical pump one could use to pump gas by hand from the tank with such a low tank setting.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank Harris from Long Beach & Big Bear on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 05:09 pm:

Here is what I use, they cost about $100 up or down about $25. I pump mine to about a pound and a half. You can get a one to five pound gauge for about $25.


You also need a relief valve to let go of some pressure from time to time. The sun can get you up to ten pounds of pressure on a hot day and that will pop your tank, don't as me how I know ;~)




pump


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By mike_black on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 09:13 pm:

The boat tail I built has an oval T tank inside with enough room for some stuff including a couple of folding lawn chairs. Area is accessible by leaning forward the back of either of the seats (Karman Ghia). The spare is mounted on top of it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erich Bruckner, Vancouver, WA on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 10:37 pm:

The first two are a car that should look familiar and the trunk area can be seen. The last one may not be known here and I can't see any external trunk opening.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bruckzone/7986187921/in/set-72157631538061038

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bruckzone/7986182006/in/set-72157631538061038/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bruckzone/7486599760/in/set-72157630402434440


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Murray - Anacortes, WA on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 11:14 pm:

Matthew, We had a "trucktail" speedster made out of the front portion of a 3-ton hood below and 1-ton hood above. The gas tank was attached to the 26-27 type firewall and was filled thru the cowl access. The trunk was large enough to keep tools, small cooler, extra clothes and a wheelchair. We were interested in accomplishing a speedster look along with pragmatic capability of wheelchair storage. A story below explains more on the link to the NWVS website. Hope that helps !!!

http://www.nwvs.org/CarPhotos/040/40b.shtml


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