Well its been a week since the arrival of the new T to the homestead. After sitting idle for almost 5 years she runs great after some beloved tinkering in the finally warm weather. She still refuses to crank up right away, but when she does run she sounds great. I still need to have the coils checked and figure if the timing is correct, but all in good time. My main question is what throttle speed do you usually start from in first gear? I know everyone's car is different and very subjective. Do you just have to find that happy place between stalling and beating on the band/drum? And how long/fast do you keep it in first before shifting?..Thanks.
Start with the spark fully retarded and the throttle maybe down 3 or 4 notches. Many folk find it starts better with the air/fuel mixture opened (CCW) about 1/4 turn.
It should always be started with the clutch released, that is with the parking brake set.
shift too soon and she will lug and chug...not good for the motor. shift too late and she might sound like it wants to explode! you just have to drive it a while, t's are pretty tough thats why they sold 15 million of em. be sure to dump the throttle when shifting to high, and never let the bands slip, press hard enough to make it go, not slip. have fun, you'll get it!
Conventional wisdom has it that the less you allow the band to slip, the better for the heat-vulnerable drum.
While this may be true, a sudden engagement and lurching launch will impart a shock-stress to those drive components closest to the engine—the universal joint, for instance—and your Model T will not benefit from a steady diet of that.
No compromise ever got a standing ovation and the same principle applies here:
Proper technique involves using as little throttle as practical so as to impart the least amount of stress when you engage the low band with just enough gusto to prevent burning, but not so much as to stall the engine.
Such a launch feels not quite smooth, but at the same time, not quite jerky.
I can pull that off in my Touring with myself and one passenger aboard, but with a heavier load, I have to rev a bit higher and let the band slip a bit more.
In either case:
How much throttle? As little as possible.
How much slip? As little as possible.
How to develop the technique? Practice.
Thanks Jim and Clayton. After an initial test drive when i first bought it, i had no idea how tweaky this car actually is. I had backed it in my barn the first day i bought it, then it rained for two days. When i pulled it out in the mud the next day the steering wheel came completely out of my hands when i tried to drive out of it, much to my surprise!..
Thanks Bob, i guess its the old case of trial and error...hopefully with less error.
Hi John, Have you been to Lang's T Parts in your fair state ?? They are moving a few miles from their old location to:
74 Maple St Baldwinville, MA 01436 just under 80 miles from Norton.
Wayne i have not, but i did just order some goodies from them, and plan to be a frequent customer.
I usually give it a quick shot of throttle while still in neutral, just to get the rpm's up, then I close the throttle and engage low, then immediately increase the throttle again. Sounds complicated, but what that does is gets a little momentum going in the engine to keep you from stalling, but allows the speed to come down as needed to keep from slipping the band too much. Then the added throttle is for normal acceleration.
Depends on whether you are starting out on level, downhill or uphill. Downhill you can almost coast in neutral and go right into high. Level lowest speed the engine will do without stalling, and uphill, you will need to give it a little more gas. If you have a Ruckstell it is easier to start uphill in low low. Same goes when you are shifting from low into high. On level or downhill it can be done at a low engine speed. Slightly retard the spark and give it a little gas as you advance the spark. Going uphill you will need to experiment. Some hills you can rev it up in low and then go into high, on others you will need to leave it in low without revving up until you get to the top of the hill. And if you have Ruckstell you might be able to get it into high with Ruckstell in low range. Get to know your car and your hills. It is best not to pull a hill in high under about 20 MPH. Doing so will lug the engine.
I start at low throttle and "pump" the low band a couple times to get some forward motion then fully engage it to keep slippage at a minimum.
Dumping it into direct is an ear thing I think.......hafta do it when it sounds right.......
John since you mentioned coils I'll go a little OT here and refer you to Milt Webb's piece in the March/April VF. While covering coil boxes, he tells how to determine whether your coils need professional attention.
Steve, I'm not yet a member in the MTFCA so i cant read it, can you give me a quick summery? The car sat for at least 5 years, is there a basic rule of thumb to determine if i should pull them out and have them checked? The car runs good after starting, although it takes a bit of finagling. It doesn't start at all like yours does.