The ramps on my new trailer are steep enough that there is a point where I starve the engine of fuel and kill the engine, requiring use of the winch during loading. Longer ramps to shallow the angle are not an option as they would be too long for safety, nor is backing on an option. I only need about 15 seconds of fuel to crest the ramp so the rear wheels start climbing and begin to level off. That is with the tank full.
Just read the post on the pressurized fuel tank, but I'm not real keen on that idea.
Has anyone come up with an auxilliary fuel canister on the firewall above the carb, that could be turned on while loading ?
I am at a loss as the amount of gas in the carb bowl should last more than long enough to get up the ramps. What carb are you running?
Maybe you could get a longer run at it, that is go faster. Or, just use the winch and save wear and tear on your bands.
Really, I wonder how many folks drive on as opposed to winching on.
Buy a wireless control for your winch (or long control cord) and you have the best of both.
Sit in the car and guide it while the winch gives a positive but comfortable loading speed.
While I am with Erich as the float bowl, I will suggest a solution. A 1 quart paint thinner can could have a tube fitting soldered into the bottom. After you have drilled the hole and before you solder it blow air in through the new hole and out the top to get rid of the residual thinner. If you can still smell thinner then blow some more.
Setting it out in the hot sun will also help to get rid of any remaining. Then flux the joint and use ordinary plumbers solder.
Get a 3 way valve (probably a ball valve (1/8" would be big enough where it is located)) and install it in the line from the tank. It need to be connected so the common connection (the one that both supplies are connected to) goes to the carb.
Make some strap brackets out of some 1 x 1/8" flat bar to hold the can to the firewall. Put some strips of old inner tube between the brackets and the can (a good coating of Black RTV silicone) would also work. The important thing is that the can does NOT rattle against the brackets as it will quickly wear a hole and leak gas down onto the hot exhaust manifold. This project could easily occupy a whole weekend to do it neatly and safely.
Some might suggest a check valve in the line from the fuel tank, but I have found that ones that would work at these low pressures will either not be gasoline proof or will leak.
If you can't find a 3 way valve then two ordinary gasoline shutoffs will work, but now you have to remember to turn off the one from the tank before you open the one from the auxilary supply
One other thing, when you go to the new supply you will need to crack open the cap to let air in, or you will be back in the soup!!
I put an electric winch on my trailer over a year ago and have never used it. It takes about 3 seconds to drive up the ramps. The amount of gas in the carb bowl is way plenty.
Paul -- That's a nifty-looking wrecker on your profile page. But even at TT speeds, you should be able to drive up the ramps in about 6 seconds.
Removeable ramp additions are an option that would temporary lengthen your ramp while loading or you could back the car on so the fuel would run toward the motor.
Like Mike, I have a winch with remote control in my trailer, but have never used it.
I find that not only does the carb hold plenty of fuel for the drive-in, but since I shut off the fuel supply before driving in, I have to run the engine for as much as 30 seconds (a long time)after getting in place, in order to empty the carb.
I suspect you have a problem that is keeping your carb waaaaay too low on fuel.
Of course I assume you have a NH like I do, or some similar carb.
I have an open trailer and I drive on. No problem. Only takes a few seconds. I've never used an enclosed trailer. I see a lot of folks use winches with them, but I really don't know that they are needed. Maybe it's scary in an enclosed trailer. I could believe it, but haven't experienced it first hand.
I'm sure a winch comes in mighty handy if you're broke down, though.
Here is an idea that will only take a few minutes to try out to solve your problems. Some of our members use it if they are really low on gas.
Use a tire pump and a gas cap with a pipe attached to it so you can seal off the air inside the tank. Pump a few pounds into the tank which will give you lots of time to get up the ramp.
I'm puzzled by the fact you can't have longer ramps (as they would be unsafe) but any T should be able to climb a slope onto a trailer if the slope allows the T not to bottom out as it goes on. With the long wheelbase of your truck the ramp would be less slope than a car would be able to climb.
Like Peter C I think you have a problem with the fuel feed ( or maybe its something else that causes the motor to cut out when the truck is tilted), you may encounter a slope as steep or steeper as the ramps in normal use sometimes so check out if there may be another reason
I have tried to make a run for it, but it's quite a steep transition to the ramp, so that doesn't work very well. We transport it on a open flatbed gooseneck trailer we use for construction equipment, so it is much higher than normal for a car transporter and the ramps are rather steep. The winch has been the solution for the moment. Our last trailer had a slightly longer dovetail and ramps, so I would just make it up. This one - not quite, and end up rolling back down and hooking up the winch.
I have the float set about as high as possible, so high that it doesn't always shut off tightly when stopped. Have to use the fuel shutoff whenever not running. Due to the steep angle it takes about 15+ seconds to get loaded. It dies at exactly the same spot on the ramp.
The idea of a separate reservoir like Les describes is what I was thinking. Was just hoping someone had already done one and knew what did and didn't work before I try it. Was thinking of a cylinder mounted by the choke lever with a 1/4 turn valve inside that I could turn just before reaching the ramp.
Thanks for the comments on the Wrecker. We were just featured in the June edition of American Towman Magazine.
Not to preach,but i think if it's only your T and everyone on the forum has 0 trouble so how high is your trailer? If your T starves for fuel and no other will how steep are your ramps? I helped get a model A back on ramps once and i was just a passer by.When the Ford is starving for fuel is it also starving for oil in the front of the engine? Bud.
I made a replacement gas cap that has a valve stem inserted where the vent hole was and use a bicycle pump to pressurize it slightly. I put it on before I head up the long steep hill to our house and it provides more than enough gas. Making the switch is a bit of a pain but it beats backing up the hill. Just don't use too much pressure.
Driving up trailer ramps is heavenly with a Ruckstell !
Bud's got a point. I had not thought about the oil situation, but he's right.
A carburetor bowl should hold plenty of fuel to load a T or TT. Maybe your float level is too low? I have a very steep driveway about 150 feet long. My coupe, under full power will just not quite make it to the top without pressurizing the fuel tank. 20 feet at half throttle to load a trailer should be a piece of cake.
However, something I have considered but not tried. There was an era accessory offered way back when to help get up short hills that could be made fairly easily. It was a (roughly) quart size fuel supply mounted down by the frame in front of the carburetor. As I have seen it, it was not vented and simply fed through from the main fuel tank. I would expect that not to work really well because once the angle was reached where the main fuel tank stopped feeding the mini-tank, it would tend to "air lock" and hold the gasoline inside the mini-tank in spite of the elevation. I figured to run a very small tube back alongside the fuel line and up the firewall for a vent. It would take a major angle to feed back into the main fuel tank, but that "in between angle" where you simply don't have any tank elevation to feed the carburetor would give you that quart ahead of the carburetor.
It could be set up several ways. What I have seen ran the fuel line from the main tank into the front of the mini-tank, then it ran back into the carburetor. I have considered a simple "T" into the carburetor and a single fuel line into the mini-tank vented as I previously mentioned.
One caution mentioned in previous threads on the subject of fuel starvation on short steep hills, is that the loss of fuel flow kills the engine before the loss of oil flow destroys the engine. That is an issue to consider with pressurizing the fuel tank like my coupe is. One full quart of extra fuel could be enough to need to think about it. I wonder about that as well with my boat-tail because it has a vacuum tank which holds about a quart.
Peter K's suggestion is also a good one. There have been a few people on our Endurance Runs that have attached a tire valve stem into a spare gas tank cap. When they find themselves stuck at a steep hill, they switch caps, pump up the tank with their tire pump, and go to the top of the hill. Then they put the vented cap back on the tank and continue the run.
BTW. I don't have a winch for my trailer. Unless you count the "come-along" I often carry in the tow vehicle. I drive my cars onto the trailer. You want to have fun one day? Try loading a 4000 pound car with a dead motor hand cranking a 1000 pound-pull come-along on a 105 degree day. YUK!
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Since I guess "it's only 'my' T and everyone on the forum has 0 trouble" - let's take a poll and see what the deck heights 'everyone' else is using.
My deck height is 38", level deck, at the tandem axles.
What's yours ?
I get there in about 8' with the first 3' of ramp the steepest before getting to the dovetail. Never measured the actual angle at loss of prime - next time I will.
I don't plan on running at that angle for longer than getting on board.
Val - would you have lost prime on those hills without it ?
I like the idea of looping the fuel line in front of the carburetor for a buffer.
Has anyone tried that ?
About 21" and that's with almost 6' of ramp and 3' of beavertail.Bud.
I ran out of fuel on a steep climb while behind a VERY SLOW TT truck on the Show Me Tour several years ago driving my 22 Coupe with the tank in the back. Rode the Vulture Wagon and still had about 7 gallons in the tank when got to level ground.
I did a little research in old adds, etc, and found the auxiliary tank as in Wayne's post. The mini tank would have a vent tube in the upper part of the tank at the front, sufficiently tall enough that no fuel would escape and prevent the air lock. I have never gotten around to fabricating one, but think it would work. A small rectangular model aircraft tank would be about the right size to fit between the frame rails. Anybody tried this I would like to hear from them--along with pictures. Regards.
Do you have a Ruckstell? Or other low, which is lower than Ford transmission? I put mine in Ruckstell and also use low pedal, and it just walks right up the ramps. It doesn't take much gas if you keep it moving. My ramps are quite steep too.
I always winch them on. As a newbie I drove on and went over the front trying to grab for petals,
very red faced and embarrassed.
I recall seeing an auxilary tank(home made) that fit in the frame rail ,ahead of the carb. The idea was to make it up hills a lot easier. Don't remember exactly where is was,maybe Tinkerin tips?
Here is the tank Wayne mentioned.
Install the gas tank vent the vendors sell. Run the vent line thru passenger compartment and then thru the floor. When encountering a steep grade pullup the end of the hose and give it a light puff, this will work on any grade.
Power or gearing is not the issue. Keeping fuel to the carb for the time when loading on steep ramps is the problem. No fuel - no go.
Something between what Wayne and Tim are describing to provide a spare reservoir is what is needed. Also need to investigate looping the fuel line in front of the carb so fuel flows back and down to the carb - Hmmmm.
What do you mean VERY SLOW ? - Our Wrecker maxes out at 22 mph !
But a Vulture Wagon ?
Thanks Peter. Do you have one ?
Can't tell from the photo, are the inlet and outlet at the same elevation or is the outlet lower on the tank ?
Paul, The gas line from the tank fits into the top of the tank at the front end, the end near the carby is at the bottom.
We have RHD T's so there is a lot less space to install one of these but even one half the length would be more than enough extra gas. The photo's were originally printed in the Vintage Ford magazine. To ensure the fuel will flow back you would need to put in a vent so air can enter the small tank and let the gas out. If I made one I would add a tube at the front and fix it up higher than the gas tank level inside the edge of the radiator where it could not be seen.
Fastest fix so far is Don Conklin's just add a piece of plastic tubing to your gas cap and blow into it as you drive up the ramp.
I've been thinking this through and feel that if you have a problem on steep ramps with fuel starvation, you probably are hanging on the edge with fuel supply when driving normally. It doesn't take much as there isn't a whole lot of 'head' to begin with.
Here's an idea, ever run out of fuel normally? How much was left in the tank? If over an inch or two, that is usually indicative of 'something' slowing fuel supply...dirty potato screen, too small of a fuel line diameter, a valve or filter in the line that is restrictive. I too would imagine that your carb bowl should also hold enough fuel for what you are talking about, in spite of other restrictions there may be. Your float might be low and worth checking.
That said, it is what it is if you can't find something and a hill climb tank might be your solution. Stewart made some fancy thing as an accessory...I think Jay posted one in his 'accessory of the day' series. There is also a home-brew graphic that accomplishes the same thing.
As to driving up on a trailer v. winching...I'll just share some personal experience. My old way was with ramps that were at about 45 degrees on the last trailer (a USN dually surplus). I could put it up there with 'one bounce' nose in, but no one else could! The brother in law who is only a casual T user borrowed the whole kit and a car one day. By nightfall I was already hearing stories and when I got it all back, the low speed band was pulled in tight all the time, with Kevlar no less! He was trying to feather so as to not have a 'bounce' or 'launch', and couldn't get up the ramps nose in or even back in...and Mr. Smarty decided I had my bands set too loose, told everybody, and then just cranked away on the screw! Well got that sorted out mighty quick, no damage done.
The next 'kit' as I went along was a beaver tail F-350 with both a PTO winch AND an electric winch. Standing rules....winch on-winch off...even though this one has a ramp kit that goes on forever in length that gives maybe a 15-20 degree angle. Personal preference, I know...but it really doesn't take that much longer getting it on and off. I rationalize that it winds up in the middle of the bed more often that way.
Here's that graphic of a hill-climb tank...
If your deck is 38 inches above the ground, sounds like you need a lower trailer. Gorgeous truck you have there.
Paul: The TT truck I was following up the hill was almost not moving when I pulled up behind it---so no fuel flowing to the coupe carb, and we stalled half-way up the grade. The Vulture Wagon then came to rescue and when we finally got to next stop and un-loaded on level ground was when I measured fuel in tank and found sufficient amount had we not been driving so slow at such an acute incline.
Thats a nice drawing George! Could you throw in the oil tube to the front of the engine?Bud.
Good stuff guys - Thanks.
I don't believe I have much restriction in the line, as when I'm out, I don't even get the dipstick wet on the end. But will check the filter again as well. Had wondered if the hit when trying to run up the ramp, caused the float to drop as I hit the ramps, causing a starvation to the jet, so I have tried creeping up as well. It always dies at the same spot though.
That photo along with the one from Peter gives me something to work on. Thanks.
What I don't need is Another Trailer - 4's enough - RV 5th, Horse gooseneck (and no the T won't fit in it, the wrecker assembly is way too tall), Grain, and flatbed.
The prior flatbed was 4" lower as it had 3 single tire axles. Had no problem loading onto it.
This one has two axles with duals so it sits higher with the bed completely above the tires, and the ramps are steeper. The former trailer was marginal with the Dozer and backhoe, so had to upgrade for safety reasons to duals.
May try that blow tube idea next time to see if that gets me up the ramp, until I can make the aux tank.
Again, great ideas - Thanks !
Now back to digging. . .
I don't think you said what your CARB is. I use NH on all my Ts. I set my float so when when I hold my carb upside down the float is level. I have never run out of gas on any hill or loading on any trailer. Try changing your float before you do all these other suggestions. I almost never shut my gas off, but when I have and forgot to open it again, I CAN STILL RUN FOR A BLOCK WITH OUT RUNNING OUT OF GAS. My gas line shut offs are only ONE inch from the carb so I am not running on gas line gas when I forget to turn the gas on. I am only running on what gas is in the bowl.
Sorry. Mine is a Holley carb.
Please look at the thread on using exhaust pressure to help move fuel to the carb. This could easily be a simple solution to your problem. I see no reason why you couldn't just leave it permanently in service. Solder a 90 degree hose fitting into the gas cap (and plug the vent hole). Yes it will mean pulling the hose off the fitting every time you put gas in it. It would be a good way to test my idea. A more permanent solution would involve soldering the fitting into the top of the tank. This is not difficult but some people don't like my safety solution!!. I have soldered on a number of gas tanks and still have my eyebrows!!!
I have seen a hose barb threaded into the vent hole of the Gas cap. You put on some fuel line and tuck it into the seat behind the bottom cushion. Now if you are on a steep spot and running out of fuel, or loading onto your trailer you reach down and grab the hose, stick it in your mouth and blow. Hold pressure for 5 -10 seconds and you will have pumped fuel to the bowl... problem solved. When you are done you tuck it back into the cushion.
When I fill a tank I remove the tank bung which has the hose on it so that would never get in the way! Offend your sense of originality?... then put it on a spare reproduction cap and only install it when you are likely to be needing to pressurize the tank.
HOLD ON!!!! Perhaps you aren't running out of gas at all, you're flooding the engine!
You said you have the carb set to maximum level. Is there a circumstance where the extreme angle you describe is causing the float to let even more fuel in, or the angle is making the already high level overflow the mechanism, and you're actually flooding, not starving??
It's worth a look-see.
Here's my idea of how: Drive the truck up the ramp until it stalls. Then set the brake and leave it right there. Turn off your fuel supply valve, open the plug on the bottom of the carb and see how much fuel comes out (catch it in a can). Then let the truck back down, open the fuel valve, re-start it, let it run until stable, then shut it off, close the fuel supply valve, and do the same thing.
If the amount of gas that is in the carb when it stalls is anywhere near the same as the amount on level ground, your problem is not starvation -- it's something else. Probably related to the steep angle, but I have no idea what that might be. Perhaps someone who knows the innards of a carb can tell us.
I too think the problem is in your carb. I don't know just exactly what that problem is, but there should be plenty of gas in an NH bowl for you to drive onto any trailer. Before trying to rig up some concoction such as an auxilliary tank, I'd look into the carb itself. As Dave H. says, set the float so it's level when it's upside-down.
You don't have a grose-jet valve in it, do you? If so, I'd start by replacing that with a stock needle & seat, and see how that works.
Here is what I have seen happen several times. At least 10 times with one guy.
They get about half way up the ramp and the motor slows down because of the hard pull, they let the car roll back to the bottom of the ramp and then give it more throttle and try again.
They get the front wheels on the trailer and just as the rear wheels hit the ramp and start up the ramp there is noticeably more load on the motor and they stop.
By that time the carb is getting dry, the low band is getting hot and the onlookers are shaking their heads.
Now it sounds like the poster that started this thread could use a good NH carb. but I thought now is a good chance to mention that if you can NOT hit the ramps and onto the trailer without letting up on the low pedal you'd better get a winch and save on your T.
A couple of times slipping low band on a ramp can take a lot out of the band lining. It's nothing like starting out on level ground or a slight hill.
Aaron - I think you are exactly right. The first couple of times I drove a T onto a trailer I was way too timid about it. You can't be shy - get moving, and get it up onto the trailer in one motion. You don't need to be flying, but you can't be shy about getting up those ramps. Now I just aim, and up I go.
I wonder if the carb has a Grose Jet in it? Those can cause fuel starvation, or stick wide open sometimes.
Pull your carb ad check your float needle. There are too many bad reports on GROSE JET NEEDLES. You might consider a NEOPREME NEEDLE, that is my favorite and I have never had a problem with one in many many Ts. For awhile grose jet needles were the big new thing but it didn't take long for most to remove them and go to something else.
Paul - Dave Huson mentioned to you that he uses "NH" carburetors on all his "T's. You responded,...."Sorry. Mine is a Holley carb." An "NH" carburetor "IS" a Holley carburetor. The proper FULL name for the carburetors Dave Huson uses on his "T's is "NH Holley". For what it's worth,......harold
Paul's truck is a 1917, so if it has an original carburetor, it would likely be a Holley G.
BTW, their bowl is even bigger than the NH.
Paul, I had the same problem with my open trailer with short ramps. First, I installed a winch with a long cord and sat in the T and winched it on. It works but a lot of hassle for just getting your car on the trailer. I subscribe to "Farm Show" a newspaper for farmers and the like. I found a device that works great with less hassle. It is a tilting hitch, that tilts the trailer in the front, while still being hitched to your truck. their web is: www.tiltahitch.com It is made by Byers.