I know, I know this is a Model T site but I also know some of you guys are closet model A guys too. Today I promised I would never spend any time taking up the floor boards and putting in a new Battery. I am to old, fat, arthritic and yes, grouchy. Can anyone give me a few hints or a website for instructions for the placement of a battery on the firewall? (I am sure I have seen that on some cars) I can fabricate something but I am concerned about the gas tank that is behind the firewall. Oh yes, I am also a nervous twit. Thanks,
I can't supply information on mounting your battery on the firewall (and certainly wouldn't recommend it), though I do have another suggestion.
Switching my A to an Optima battery was a good move. Less maintenance, less mess, and when you do have to replace it, you can reach down and pull it out with one hand. Bratton's sells a hold-down for Optimas that positions the battery correctly and fits the original style box.
I second the Optima. My SW Sedan came with a battery on the firewall and it looked like heck. When I restored the car, I patched the holes and cut the angle iron carrier into small pieces.
I also recommend a battery maintainer for the Optima. I found both on Amazon for good prices.
Third vote for an Optima battery. I have one in my '28 roadster pickup and there is basically no maintenance.
Can I get the Optima at any auto supply? Can I just stick my hand thru the hole in the floor board and lift it out? That would be great. I really didn't want to change the car from the original look. It must be fairly small if it can be lifted thru that opening. I believe it is original opening...is covered with a piece of tin that swivels so it can be charged thru the opening.
The Optima battery can not be lifted out through the opening in the floor board.
Based upon my experience, the best place to purchase an Optima battery is Amazon.com. I haven't found any place that sells them for less than Amazon.. Other online retailers may or may not have "fresh" batteries on hand. I have never received a "stale" Optima battery from Amazon.
if you have a real battery lifter strap, its much easier. or cheat, like i do and clamp a vise grip on each post to lift it out of the hole. never heard a bad word about the optimas, i'm just too cheap to buy one
You can get an Optima at Summit or Speedway motors. Check their websites for a free shipping promo. We buy lots of race car parts from both sites and save up a large order if possible to take advantage of the free shipping promos.
Also an Optima can be mounted in any position so maybe you could mount it on it's side under your seat or some other place that's easier to get at.
I have five of 'em...they're great batteries.
Here is the battery mount on my 1928 Leatherback. The car is right hand drive. I'll see if I have a photo with the battery installed.
This is how it was when I bought it. I plan to put it back under the floor down the track.
Does the optima come in 6. 8. And 12 volt? Do I need an alternator? If I get an optima under the floor boards I still have a problem getting the boards up.....much less frequently. Has anyone just cut the opening larger and put a larger piece of tin over the hole? Expect the opening would so large I would need a thin piece of sheet metal. What are your thoughts?
How often do you need to take your battery out to go to all the trouble to place it somewhere else? If you need to charge it connect the leads to the hot (-) cable at the starter and ground (+) to frame. The hole over the battery should be more then large enough to check the electrolytes. If you need more then 6V it's time to check connections. I would install a good shut off. You can buy a mounting bracket that mounts using one of the starter bolts in the engine bay. You might try getting a battery lifting strap, makes it easier to put in and take out.
The Ultima comes in 6V and 12V versions. I had a first hand look at its rugged construction at the last Old Car Festival. I was sitting by the T-Garage and one rolled off a TT running board battery box and tumbled 20 feet before coming to a stop. The driver of the TT, ran back for it and fired his truck up with no problem.
However, the Ultima and all other AGM style batteries can deplete themselves if they sit uncharged for a long time. For this reason, I purchase my batteries from one of the several sources on Amazon who give free delivery and a promise of recent manufacture. In many cases, auto stores don't sell many 6 volt batteries and I have been offered batteries with manufacturing dates of two years prior to sale.
The Ultima is longer and more narrow than a Group 1 case so it mounts diagonally in your Model A battery tray. Others posting are right, you can reach down and grab it one handed instead of doing the banging elbows trick with the Group 1. I have a battery tender hooked to mine and I am delighted with how the battery is holding up. Another thing I purchased for my car is a Fun Projects voltage regulator because I believe that a cutout can fry a battery on a long tour.
Bottom line: Don't modify the floorboard, drop the battery in place and forget about it for a few years.
I'm with Mark. I have to get to my A's battery so seldom I forget what it looks like under there and how to get at it. Make sure you have a good generator and wiring. Get yourself a Fun Projects voltage regulator and set it per the instructions. Buy a good quality battery of your choice. Optimas are OK, but I don't bother with the added expense. You won't have to mess with the battery for years on end.
I don't understand why you need to take the battery out so often for "maintenance". I have a Model A. The battery (cheapest 12V you can buy) gets replaced every 6 - 8 years. Other than that there's no reason to ever look at the battery.
Maybe you have the cutout set too high causing the battery to boil? If so the Optima battery is going to get destroyed quickly too.
I have jumped it in the past the way mark described but never charged it that way. Took the batt out about a year ago and charged it on my work bench. Yesterday I noted the batt is 3years and 10 months old. Set It up for a slow charge last pm at local auto parts because my multimeter was showing 7.8 V but using my batt load tester after 10 sec it showed "bad". It's a 8V batt. Will know more tonight. Thanks for all the input guys. Happy Fording.
I did not see Monday's posts until after I made today's comments. Will leave the batt where Henry put it. Now I will need to study the cut out and generator. Batt had fluid in all cells but may have been a little low. In the 1950s we just topped them out with a garden hose. I guess that is a no no. So where do I get (if it ever comes to that) electrolytes?
You just top it off with distilled water. The only time electrolytes are normally added is to a battery that was shipped dry. 8 volt battery's are a band aid fix. If your starter is dragging then maybe it's time for a rebuild, new bushings and bearings.
If you do stick with the 8V make sure you have an 8V cutout. I don't know if Snyders sells an 8v + ground cutout but I think the Langs does only it's for - ground.
6V should be more then enough for the actual c.i. and compression of the Model A engine. If it's not firing after a few revolutions then maybe it's time to check compression, timing etc.
Spark lever up
Pull the throttle lever down a bit
GVA open maybe 1 1/2 turns from closed
Close choke for a couple revolutions with key off then release to prime
Turn key on
Pull spark lever down about 3/4
Turn GVA down to 1/4 to 1/2 turn from closed (I have a story about this one), this could be more or less depending on your engine and carb.
Push the throttle lever back up. Should have that tick tick of a Model A. Some need a little more idle speeds then others so may be a faster tick tick.
This is not just for Fred as there is at least one new A owner out there. I know at least one A owner that had driven then for years and did not pull the spark lever down after starting.
I don't understand the removal of the battery to charge it? Just set the charger on the running board.
Fred, why don't you just add a Battery Tender by Deltron Co. to the positive and negative terminals
with the cable attached underneath to the running board brace and when not out about town just plug it in when you return and leave it until the next outing. I have done this to my model A Truck and all 5 of the Model T's and have not had one single issue with a battery problem in the last 6 years.
It only maintains a trickle charge only when the battery needs it. I have purchased 6 volts for the trucks, 12 volts for the tractors and road grader and have never paid over $39.95. The absolutely will eliminate your battery problems.
Update. Bad batt. I probably don't drive her enough to keep it charged. I like the suggestion of hooking a batt tender up when I get another batt. Would a tender hide a cut out problem?
I guess if it does it's not a problem. I don't drive it a lot and never very far.Thanks again everyone.
It might if you have an 8V battery and 6V cutout.
Fred you need to keep any battery charged or it will be junk in no time. Optima batteries are just moe expensive to replace.
Why not just cut the hole in the floorboards large enough to remove the existing battery and make a new cover?
Royce the hole in the floor board is to small for me to attach the large clamps to the batt. Today I picked up a Delran tender but noticed after I got home it is a 12 V. That shouldn't hurt anything......right? Wouldn't it cut off if the batt is charged? I am running 8V batt.
Since the Deltran Battery Tender employs an integrated circuit to monitor voltage and maintain the battery, it will not work work on an 8 volt battery.
My Battery Tenders are six volt models hooked up permanently to the battery. I don't use the clamps for charging inside the vehicle.