On the morning of Thanksgiving, I decided to start my T, even though it was 32 degrees outside. I didn't intend to drive it, just start it and let the fluids circulate.
After doing all my checks, I opened up the mixture an 1/8th of a turn and give it three primes just as I normally do. I figured that it would be a pain to hand crank it in the cold, but I decided to try anyway.
You could imagine my surprise when I nearly got a free start! All it took was two pulls of the crank after that to get it running like a top, even though it was stone-cold!
If the engine is properly tuned and everything is adjusted close to correctly it should run fine at that temperature. After all, folks run T's in the snow all the time, and have since they were new.
Your T is tougher than you think!
I always park my cars in high gear. That way the clutch plates are together. When I pull the parking brake back the clutch discs separate and don't have cold motor oil sticking them together creating drag.
Free starts are fun.
: ^ )
I had our '27 Tudor out the other day in 16 degree weather.
I normally park in high as well. Sunday morning, I went to start the '18 and found I had left it in neutral. It was probably in the mid 40's inside the shop. One pull with choke out and started on the next pull on mag and no tendency to creep. Ford clutch and 5w-30.
Cameron: I also go through the same procedures as you described and consistently obtain the easy starts that you experienced and free starts are not uncommon. This during temperatures under 20 degrees. I do park the car in high gear.
I've had mine out at -10 Deg. F. Opened the mixture 1/4 turn on the Holley G, choked all 4 cylinders then switched on the mag and pulled the crank twice. After about 1/2 minute I had to lean out the mixture to its normal setting. Ran like a champ.
The Saturday before T day was our traditional family Thanksgiving get together that included rides in the T
I didn't have time to do anything to prepare for the rides except check the air in the tires.
It was cold in NH so I put a jack under the right rear to make it easier to start (I normally put it under the left rear but due to the addition of a Model A to the garage there was more room on the right )
With about 14 people watching (some of them new) I gave the T a few priming cranks with the choke pulled out and the ignition off.
When I switched to battery the T gave me a free start and some thought that I had a starter
I then pulled the e-brake back to stop the wheel from turning while I got car ready.
About 15 seconds later someone said the the wheel was smoking
I looked at the wheel that was in the air and it was turning and smoking - I guess I will be adjusting the wheel brakes when things get warmer
It's not a cold start unless the temp is below zero. Here in Minnesota, we need to take our cars out every once in a while to get our Model T fix over the winter months. That means driving when it's actually cold outside.
Due to selling our home and waiting for our new home to be ready, my '14 has been in storage ever since it was used in my father's funeral procession back in September. This Friday, when we get to move into the new place, the forecast is for -17F overnight with a high of 1F. I guarantee that I will fire up the old T and take it for a spin after I roll it out of the trailer. It will start on the first or second pull after 2-4 priming pulls. If I can talk my wife into standing in the cold for a few minutes, I'll have her take a video of an actual cold start so that you can all see just how matter of fact it is for a well maintained Model T. These cars are much more versatile than people give them credit for.
Hi Eric - I hope it all goes ok. It would be very nice to see that video.
BTW, My condolences on the loss of your Father. My Dad has been gone since '98 and I think of him often.
I like to sneak mine out before the plows have a chance to ruin everything by putting the snow in the ditch. <grin>
I'm also sorry to hear about Byron.
I like the free start that I get when I prime the cylinders and richen up the gas. It makes it easier to keep it running when you are right there to adjust the spark rather than run around to get it before the engine dies.