Looking at a couple of original Warfords v the price of a new one. Any thoughts on using one to get the speedster up and going, or is it not worth the hassle?
If you like the orig ones, what to look for in a used one?
Noob question #5524 checked off.
There's too many unknowns. IMHO: If you currently have a speedster--do what you need (not want) to do to get it going, then improve/make changes from there. If you are just now thinking and planning and rounding up parts I'd recommend the new one rather than a Ruckstel, or, if you have plenty of funding, go all out and get both. I have a Warford sitting in the shop floor that was for my TT, along with the high speed ring and worm right beside it--so, I'd use an old one because I have one already! I've never run a Warford, but, I have Muncies in both of my speedsters (along with Ruckstels) and, like the old Warfords, have a true neutral that it's easy to get caught in when trying to shift while driving (since they're not synchronized)--you then have no brakes, unless you have some kind of aftermarket aux brakes. Even in an open speedster, the noise of those straight cut gears of the old aux transmissions will rattle your teeth in anything other than direct. I won't swap old for new, but, If I were starting from scratch, I'd use the new one. Also, many folks build cars that look like speedsters, but, are just stock T's. If that's you, you may not need either one.
Thanks for the input. I guess I'm second guessing my stupidity and my cheapness. I had someone I trust tell me new... just the old are so affordable, even though the higher source green lighted a new one. I won't say I've been known for driving slow and a stock speedster it won't be. I'm looking at some sort of brakes and met Ricks In Surfcity over the weekend who gave me a look at T add ons in the Nash system he uses. I may fab that up and his recommendation was pretty strong.
Thank you again.
I say get an old one and spend all that money else-where! Especially if you're getting some serious brake upgrades. Shifting without a clutch is part of the mystique. I got a great aluminum cased Warford for $750 and that includes the cost of shipping from Oklahoma to North Carolina. She sings a little in overdrive but the new ones do too. I took it all apart and cleaned it up. The only thing I really rebuilt was the shifter, and it didn't need any new parts - just needed de-gunkifying. Really the only advantage a new one affords is that you can just stuff it in gear no matter what. Look at it this way: if you get an old one and hate it, you can either sell it and get a new one, or sell it with the torque tube and driveshaft and someone is way more likely to buy it "ready to go". And, you weren't out that much money anyway. Just get your shortened torque tube and driveshaft from Texas T. That way you can hang on to your original longer ones. Just my two cents. The overdrive is super nice when you want to cruise at 50 on the highway. The under drive makes parades and trailer loading and unloading a piece of cake.
2 other quick notes: the singing really isn't a factor for me (mine isn't that bad really) it just changes the sound of the wind noise. Plus the new ones sing some too from what I've heard. I won't shift into OD if I'm not at or above 40 mph anyway cause I don't want to break a crank. The other thing is, and really the most important: if you're building a speedster auxiliary brakes are a MUST. Especially if you have an auxiliary trans, but really no matter what, you need them. Even if you just get something period correct. Larry Sidemore is out your way and makes a great set that I fully endorse. My AC brakes are activated by my brake pedal and linked with rods, makes a huge difference in how easy the car is to stop. If you really can't decide - go ride with someone who has something similar to what you're thinking! There's a zillion T speedster guys out in Cali.
I was thinking about doing the combo Ricks_Surfcity has. Met him at his yardsale and he downloaded a bunch of info. I don't machine, but I weld so it is a realistic possibility and with everything he has done in a T and the miles... I'm impressed already. I have a couple of cast iron Warfords for a few hund if I grab them tomorrow.. I may just to have them. I will be blowing the car apart next summer. For now there is just a personal surprise to get it running by late April.
The big question between the modern "KC Warford" and any original era after-market transmission for a T is; can you or do you want to learn how to shift it? Also, what do you want your car to be and do for you?
Transmissions are not all the same. Some have overdrive, some do not. Do you want overdrive?
Ruckstell rear ends are easy to shift. Modern KC Warfords I have been told are easy to shift. I have never tried one.
Personally, I like original Warford, Muncie, and Jumbo Giant transmissions. But that is me.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
I almost forgot!
Brakes! Brakes! Brakes!
Stock T brakes don't do much if the auxiliary transmission gets stuck in neutral! And auxiliary transmissions love to get stuck in neutral.
There are many choices for auxiliary brakes. Many long forum threads worth.
Wayne is definitely correct. Auxiliary brakes are a must with any transmission that has a neutral. This cannot be over stressed. Many of us who survived could tell you stories.
Hi Grant, Sorry I didn't have my car there at RDR's sale for you to check out my old Alum Warford. I can tell you I love it and have no problems, it upshifts nicely without a clutch when you throttle up to match rpms. I followed Ed Archers advice on how to enclose the shifters with a copper tube to stop oil leaks there.
I can't give any advice on the CI ones except they're pretty heavy. Seems like many of them may have been made for truck use? There are several versions. Theres a CI one on Craigs List nowfor 275, I think, locally.
If you get back to HB give me a holler and I'll give you a ride to demo my Warford. I especially like the underdrive in high pedal for neighborhoods but always use the OD on the freeways.
Gene and all,
Thanks for the info. I'm a complete noob on T's. I've build fat fenders, muscle cars but nothing this cool and a life long friend is into period correct A's... hence my project. He ding-dong-ditched it on my doorstep. This is our way of reconnecting and me getting back grease and sparks of the welder.
Gene, thanks for being such a gent to my stoopid questions and Ralph being such a gracious genius. My wife and I are working up a care package for him and his wife... what a great guy and group. I picked up the two cast irons and will have to fab a cross member, but if you saw my T, I have to fab a ton. I can be back in HB whenever... I'll shoot you my number. I'm going to have a beer with Bill W and get more info this weekend or next. Thanks again, guys!