What do I look for when buying a T that I can drive 1000 miles home?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2015: What do I look for when buying a T that I can drive 1000 miles home?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 07:06 pm:

Hi guys I'm in New Zealand and getting very close to buying my first T. I am reasonably prepared I guess and very motivated. Most of my options are about 1000 miles away and I'm keen to check it over then drive home. Besides the obvious everyday mechanical inspections what do you suggest I look for/inspect on a T that a general handyman home mechanic thats used to 50's and up era cars like me wont be used to checking out? Some of the cars I've found have been restored 10 - 20 yrs ago but one is a California import never been restored but a good runner. Thanks


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank van Ekeren (Australia) on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 07:16 pm:

Hi, Kevin and welcome to the love of T's, first of all, have you driven a T before? a trip like that is a big step if you have little to no experience with them, please tell.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Wrenn on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 07:21 pm:

Check the steering system and all the attachments for wear. You can "yank back and forth" (inward/outward) of the rear wheels to see if there's any play that might indicate wear on the thrust washers. You'll probably want to tear the rear end apart anyway once it's home just to have a visual inspection. Highly recommended. Give the radiator as good of a visual inspection as you can, you'll know how it's gonna perform of course once you drive it a bit. If it's a round tube, rest assured it's going to run warm right from the get-go.

Check the fluid level in the rear-end, and of course the upper/lower oil cock underneath! Look inside the transmission for any obvious wear and to at least see what kind and what shape the band linings are in.

There's tons of other things that more experienced T'ers than me can chime in about!

Good luck with your future new toy! And get ready for the multiplication factor!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hwdcne on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 07:22 pm:

First of all find a T that has the running gear converted to a later model chasis with a late model fuel injected v/8. LOL Just kidding but I wouldn't trust my stock T 25 miles from home, much less 1,000 without some spare parts and tools and a good mechanic handy. I'm sure there will be other owners tell you differently. Really depends how good of a mechanical IQ you have.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 07:25 pm:

I would go and already have a set of newly rebuilt and adjusted coils as well as a new timer to install with me. Probably also a set of spark plugs, wires, and my own rebuilt carb. Other than that I don't know. Sounds like it would be an EPIC trip!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 08:07 pm:

Listen, do yourself a favor: Arrange for or tow it yourself after a good long look. There's no way I'd try this. In fact somewhere along the line you'll probably be needing a tow anyway.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don Booth@ Bay City, Mi on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 08:09 pm:

I would have a chase vehicle with plenty of spare everythings. And a trailer just in case.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 08:15 pm:

Aw cmon you guys! It's not an adventure if there isn't any risk involved. Kevin, take a tool kit and that stuff I mentioned and a camera! Then take a zillion pictures along the way and post them and your stories and everything here. The old Ts are tough and faithful, I'm sure you'll pick one that will bring you home.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By bob middleton on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 10:16 pm:

Bought a model a drove it home over 500 miles and sea level to 9000 elevation endeing at 4500
Depends on the car
Also buddy bought a 35 ford drove it 2300 miles home
Make sure your more then a novice with model t and allow for 200 mile days at best time wise due to n route issues that may or may not come up
Best of luck i myself would not bat an eye


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walt Berdan, Bellevue, WA on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 10:39 pm:

If I were thinking of such a venture, I would want to know the seller, his integrity and his degree of experience with the car - how much has it been driven recently? what kind of recent maintenance? does he consider it ready for such a trip? If you are not experienced with Model T's, I would ask for driving lessons from him in the car you hope to purchase. If the car seems to run and drive well, and you feel confident hitting the road I'd ask him how confident he would be in taking the trip. If you like his answer and feel like an adventure - go for it. Others have done as much or more and survived to tell the tale. Oh, I do hope you have a flexible schedule, a T can adjust your plans. Others will likely address spare parts. Ignition timer and coils, a spare tire or two, oil, water, fire extinguisher, cell phone . . .

Most important - maintain a sense of humor!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Simon Bayley on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 10:53 pm:

Kevin,

Best advice i can suggestt is to get AA plus cover and them drive it home. If you break down or need transport you will get picked up and delievered to your home in either island for the membership cost. I drove chch to blenheim and had it as a backup just i case. All the best ps lots of t people all throughout nz so i am sure if you got stuck someone would help.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erik Barrett in Auburn Ca. on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 11:05 pm:

I did the same back in 1999. Bought a 26 Tudor off this web site's classified page, photos only. Dad, myself, and a friend bought one way tickets and flew to Seattle. We picked the car up and hauled it to my Aunt's house nearby and spent a couple days going over it. If we found trouble, the plan was to rent a Uhaul truck and haul it home. Turns out, we loaded up our luggage, tools, and a few spare parts and headed south. 5 days, 1100 miles and a grand time it was. Three full sized adults and all our stuff. This car had twin side mounted spares and a big trunk on the rear. We had our bags jammed in between the spares and the cowl, and the trunk stuffed. Also a running board fence on the left side for storage. What a ride! Portland I could have done without. We got passed by a set of triples going about 70 that nearly knocked us over. Anyway, make sure to check out the safety items, tune it up, and go for it. Leave yourself plenty of time, and have a backup plan. You will certainly know a bunch about your new car when you get home.
Erik


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 11:16 pm:

All good stuff thanks guys, the AA plus is a great idea, Thanks Simon. I'll keep an eye out for a set of Triples (whatever they are?) ...actually a set of twins would suffice lol.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Clayton Swanson on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 11:45 pm:

all good advice above, but i feel the most important thing is who are you buying it from? most t's here in the states that are listed for sale are being sold by the son or daughter of some one who has passed, and they know nothing about whats been done to the car. most important is did they drive it? and i dont mean in the parade once a year, or around the block when the grand kids came to visit, but was the owner an active member of a club, who put lots of miles on, and either had professional engine and trans work done, or was capable himself. most folks on this forum are not only sharp, but they also put miles on they're Ts. that who you want to buy from, and then have a nice trip!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 11:57 pm:

"Triples", local slang for a truck/tractor pulling three trailers, usually near 20 feet (six meters) in length each. Many states in the USA 48 states allow these. A few states, including California only allow up to two trailers per truck/tractor. Three trailers are more efficient for long haul, but more dangerous around heavy traffic areas.

A new-to-you model T usually takes a couple hundred miles to "shake the bugs out". Have a backup plan (like tow service or a friend following) and phone numbers you can call for help along the way. Biggest concerns are over-heating of the motor (a few too many miles can do serious expensive damage to the engine), and Babbitt bearings coming apart. Almost anything else can be repaired or patched along the way. Take your time and take it easy. By the time you get home, you should have most of the bugs shaken out and a few minor things to fix.
Do drive carefully, and enjoy! W2


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Thode Chehalis Washington on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 12:23 am:

Here is a triple. Can be 105 ft long.


A really good check list for getting a T ready for a road trip can be found at:
http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/257047/269084.html
Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank van Ekeren (Australia) on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 01:09 am:

OK, If it's a pi**ing competition do I win? try one of ours, and I've even got a licence to drive one of these mothers!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By samuel pine on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 02:38 am:

I did that 55yrs ago when I had good bones. No
tools nothing. My fathers 59 Buick Electra with
only a rope in the truck. The car a 1926 Ford
boiled rats nests about every mile (in the winter)
renting a car trailer back then was unheard of.
With only three more miles to home,the motor
blew up good thing we had a rope. My last adventure
my kids F350 a trailer rental and cruised home
never feeling towing a "T" and trailer. thats all

sam


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 03:06 am:

23 years ago I was a young optimist when I bought my '53 Dodge 350 miles from home. I had checked the brakes, fitted a new battery, test driven it to the gas station and wanted to drive it home even though it had been sitting for 16 years in a heated garage. Didn't work out as planned, the radiator started leaking and the engine boiled after a few miles - had to abandon it and find someone who could flatbed it home.

If you find a Model T that has been recently toured, buy it and start out heading for home, then remember to check the oil often. If the engine still has cast iron pistons with old rings, oil consumption (and leakage) can be much more than what you're used to with more modern cars. The level should be between the petcocks, but when filling up do so until it comes out the upper. There should be a stream of oil when opening the lower petcock - dripping isn't enough. Check so the hole is clear with a wire and fill up.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Chris Barker, Somerset, England on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 04:05 am:

I would look for one that has been driven 1000 miles in the last year.......


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Crane on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 05:09 am:

Frank Van Ekeren
Is that thing real or photo shopped?
Thank you
jon


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 05:26 am:

There are som really long road trains operating in Australia.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Road_train#Rules_and_regulations


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 06:41 am:

Good advice re the oil. I was planning on changing the oil once it got hot probably at "Curbside Autos". How much oil do they hold if I drain it?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 07:16 am:

I don't know that I would try it. Not with an unfamiliar car. I have little doubt that ours would make that trip, but it wouldn't have when we first got it. There will always be some bugs to work out on a new vehicle. I would just prefer to work those bugs out near the house. It didn't take long for me to build my confidence in the new car and begin to venture out further, as repairs were made and I got a feel for how it ran. But I wouldn't have wanted to have tried 1000 miles before knowing what things it needed and getting that warm fuzzy feeling that things were OK.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 07:20 am:

About four quarts. Some old oil stays in the dips under the rods, so with a new-to-you car you may want to open the inspection lid under the pan and check the condition inside and clean the dips. That'll tell you more if you want to drive 1000 miles right ahead with your new toy.
(Bring a new gasket)

Ford recommended a medium light oil, that's SAE20 today. Anything in the store like 10W-30 or 5W-40 will likely work fine and be much better than what was available back then.
Ford also recommended to change oil every 750 miles. Without any possibility to filter the oil, that recommendation stands even though oils are better now - modern oils will still cause wear in the engine when they're dirty.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Freighter Jim on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 07:34 am:

Kevin,

Not knowing the weather in your area the time of year you are traveling - how far apart service stations are - availability of parts & qualified repair shops along your route - cell phone service ...

I would suggest you trailer it for 1000 mile maiden journey.

You don't know this car .... yet.

The side of the road is not a comfortable place to be ... :-)



Freighter Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James A. Golden on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 08:04 am:

I have a Model T friend in Maryland that bought a WW-II era Bi-plane Trainer and flew it home from Ohio, after only 4 hours of flying lessons there.

His required gas stop took 8 passes to get it on the ground.

His main problem was that he was using a road atlas for navigation and following Interstate 70, but he did not realize they were printed with a True north and that area has 17 degrees of Magnetic Compass variation.

His next problem was his atlas flew out of the open cockpit before he got to Baltimore and he flew over some high restriction areas that launched two F-16 chase planes. The pilots waved and motioned to him, so he waved back and kept flying.

He saw the Chesapeake Bay Bridge about that time, turned north and crossed the bay to his home landing field without further incident.

He put the plane away and thought he did very well with his second landing in Maryland.

When he came out to go to work the next morning, a big black car drove in his driveway, with two FAA high ranking employees inside that wanted to meet him and see his airplane.

He admitted flying the plane home and said he tried to stay above 500 feet, but sometimes had to go lower to read the big green Interstate signs. Then he declined their offer at first, but they told him they could not find any record of him having a pilots license. He noted that was probably because he just bought the plane and did not have time to get a license yet. You can imagine their reaction. Then they agreed not to write him up and cite him for about 5 infractions if he agreed not to fly the plane again without a license.

He needed 20 hours for a student pilot permit and his instructor quit and left town when he had the hours. He found another instructor and they crashed the plane on the 20th flight hour.

He has been rebuilding the plane every since and plans to take me for a ride later this year. I told him my mother didn't raise any foolish children.

Driving a Model T home without any prior driving experience should be an easy task, if there is a coastal flat land route to follow.

I have lived in New Zealand and it seemed rather hilly in most areas. Model Ts are not fond of hills! Going down is as dangerous as going up, due to a very limited braking capability. One must remember to go down at the same speed the T would go up.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 08:13 am:

James! Lol what a story! I'd imagine the F-16's had a hard time going slow enough to stay beside him.

Glad he didn't really get in trouble though.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Fred Dimock, Newfields NH, USA on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 10:19 am:

At least a Model T is already on the ground when the motor stops running. :-)

Many times the foolhardy can get away with stuff the knowledgeable would cringe at trying to do.
As for me - it would scare the tar out of me to take an unknown Model T on a 1,000 mile trip.
Just the rear thrust bearings alone would have me shaking, never mind all the other things that might go wrong.

But "What the hay! Why not?" The trip has the opportunity to turn into a story that will be passed down to future generations -
Just remember it could be a horror story, a story of triumph over obstacles, or an adventure story with a happy ending.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Walker, NW AR on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 10:41 am:

Kevin -- I agree with Hal Davis. I wouldn't be afraid to embark on a long trip in my T, or his either, for that matter. But Model T's which are for sale and up to a trip like the one being considered are few and far between. I drove my T to the Centennial in Richmond in '08, a round trip of 1,800 miles. I had to adjust the clutch once, and the bands once. No problem. If this car's clutch needed adjusting 100 miles into the trip in the middle of nowhere, would you know how to do it?

I'm all for adventure, but not so much for inconvenience and hardship. I cast my vote for a trailer trip to get the car home, so you can get it to the point where it is capable of trips such as this and learn about Model T's in the process. Then, when you and the car are ready for it, have your adventure.

"Discretion is the better part of valor."


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem - SE Michigan on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 10:51 am:

What do you look for when driving a T 1000 miles home?

Gas stations every 100 miles or so.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 11:46 am:

The best thing I can think of would be to find one which has been completely restored by the present owner, and the owner has records of everything which has been done to the car since he bought it until now. You can also expect to pay a steep price for one like that.

A Model T is nearly or over 100 years old depending on the year of the car. Many parts are crystalized and you won't know what's going to break until it does.

My first Model T broke the first time I took it on tour. The driveshaft had been welded about ten inches forward of the pinion bearing. It was an external weld just around the surface of the shaft. Fortunately, I had installed Rocky Mtn Brakes before I took it on a tour. Later when I took some friends for a ride, a bolt came out of the driven plate and went around the flywheel taking out the starter gear. After that happened, I took the entire car apart and checked and repaired everything I could find wrong. Now is is my most dependable T.

A friend bought a "restored" car from a Ford Dealership. This car had been on the showroom floor for many years. After the owner of the dealership died, the car was sold. Everything seemed to work very well until my friend took the car up a steep hill and killed the engine. The car rolled backward and the brakes wouldn't hold it. He later found that there was no brake band in the transmission, and no shoes in the rear parking brake. Only had Rocky Mountain Brakes, which work very well when going forward, but tend to release when going backward.

Anyway, unless you have reliable documents concerning everything done to the car, you are still better off to disassemble it and inspect everything before driving on a long tour. Even then, there are some things which it is good to check, such as the brakes, also the rear axle thrust bearings, the compression, and the steering mechanism.

Also if you plan a long trip, get names of club members along your route, who might be able to help you if you need help. You don't find all the parts you might need at the local auto parts store, and the modern Ford dealer might not have anyone on staff familiar with Model T's
Norm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 11:56 am:

Some of the above posts are good suggestions. If you have access to a truck and trailer, you could drive to the location where the T is presently parked. Then check the brakes, steering, and do a pull on the rear axles as suggested above. Also check the tires. Remember that the 30x3 or 30x3 1/2 tires need 60 psi pressure, or the 4.50x21 tires use 35 psi. pressure is very important especially on the high pressure tires. You should also carry extra oil, water, and gasoline. Check the oil every 100 miles. Sometimes the oil leaks out.

After those few tests are done, you could set out on the drive home followed by a friend with the truck and trailer. If you are lucky, you make it all the way without mishap. If it breaks down, you have a tow following you.

Good luck
Norm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don Booth@ Bay City, Mi on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 12:53 pm:

Two years ago at the Old Car Festival at Greenfield Village I was fortunate enough to be parked next to three Texan's. They had purchased a roadster and without doing any work on it, not even changing the tires their mission was to start off at the plant where it was built and drive it back to Corpus Christie. Now I'm not judging the sanity of these guys or their quest, however one has to wonder what drove them to do this. Here's a Facebook link to the entire trip home.


https://www.facebook.com/1913tuttut100 d


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Thode Chehalis Washington on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 01:03 pm:

Memorable journeys are made by the adversities during the trip. A trip from A to B with no problems is quite boring and forgettable.

Make reasonable preparations and go for it.


Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don Booth@ Bay City, Mi on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 01:07 pm:

Billy, Buddy and Mike at the Old Car Festival. Billy (pictured in the top photo) was diagnosed with a inoperable tumor on his esophagus and wasn't given any hope of a successful outcome. He chose to drive the T the entire way home. His life long friends Buddy and Mike were there to support his bucket list venture. I've kept in touch with these guys since that weekend in 2013. Two weeks ago I got a text from Billy, it read..."Hey Bud I just picked up another Model T to restore!!" I responded, how is the medical situation going Billy? (Billy) "Oh I'm all taken care of...not a problem anymore". So there is a morel to this story and I will let you figure it out. Obstacles are sometimes just that~


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary H. White - Sheridan, MI on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 06:22 pm:

A few years back there was a posting of a couple from Texas that flew to Alaska to buy a Model T that was "Ready to drive home". So they did. They posted several times during the journey home. Can't remember the names for now but someone here can help.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Walker, NW AR on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 06:43 pm:

Gary -- That was Ben and Nancy Hardeman, owners of Texas T Parts at the time. It helps if you can call home to your own personal Model T parts store and order anything you want, shipped overnight. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James A. Golden on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 07:20 pm:

Seth, the F-16s very rapidly flew past each side and one did a loop and crossed in front with hand signals, while the other one did a loop and crossed in back.

The one in front also took a photo of my friend waving to him. Those FAA men already had a copy with them early the next morning.

They also tried to convince him to donate his plane to the Udvar-Hagy Air Museum that had just opened.

He declined their offer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve McClelland on Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 07:57 pm:

If it's a good running very sound car, with good engine and transmission and rear end, and new tires, after going over a Pre-trip checklist you can find here on the MTFCA site from past post.
I would say figure on at best a weeks travel time you might do 200 miles per-day if your lucky, an experienced model T'er could do 250-300 + pretty easy with a good T and luck on their side.
Things you can expect to happen: Adjust brakes, Adjust low band, Change a flat or two, Fill with water, Add oil, You need to bring tools, Jack, Jack stands, Cell phone, First Aid Kit, Have close encounters with Stupid drivers!!!
Good measures to take, as above have a chase car ie: someone to follow you, Arrange a buddy or family member to be on stand by with a trailer to come get you, Map out a SAFE ROUT with a starting point and a stopping point daily for daytime driving only! And don't exceed your limits or the cars limits.
Drive safe and have fun....
Oh and Good luck on the trip.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank van Ekeren (Australia) on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 02:49 am:

Jon, answer to your question is, yes, someone had some fun with that, photo shopped, several trailers would be about it, the poor old trucks just wouldn't have the horse power for that many.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Chuck Lebeda on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 07:02 am:

Kevin: Do your CAR a big favor. Beg/borrow/steal a trailer and haul it home. If this is your first T, donít spoil your relationship with it by breaking down along a lonely road miles away from Ďpartsí, help, and home. This is comparable to taking a 94 year old man out of a nursing home and asking him to Ďruní a marathon. I love my old cars, but canít go far without tools, parts, and a CELL phone. Most NAPA stores donít have T parts along the highways, so you may have a long wait to order parts. Haul it home, check it out like these good T guys tell you, take it out on several test drives close to home, and then ENJOY the car. Just my thoughts. Chuck


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 04:08 pm:

Exactly where do I find the pre-trip checklist? I find this site hard to use and none of my posts actually appear show up?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Skip Anderson, in MN. on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 04:26 pm:

I hope you have 1000 miles of flat land, which I doubt. Check the brakes and maybe bring an anchor. Just kidding, I hope it all works out. Be safe.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 04:33 pm:

2010 thread with several pre-tour checklists:

http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/331880/378903.html?1375630944


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tony Bowker on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 09:00 pm:

That trip by Ben was not trouble free, he broke down in Montana, ran out of oil and had to install at least one new rod.
I would suggest to Kevin that he find someone who knows Model Ts, there are lots in the North Island, don't know about the south Island. Actually can you drive 1000 miles in the South Island?
Bottom line, with an unprepared Model T you can EXPECT problems.....


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Warwick Landy on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 09:20 pm:

Thirty years ago I sold my first restoration project, a 1916 pick-up. A guy pestered me to buy it so I sold it to him. I told him I would deliver it. I was newly licensed to drive and even though I had put together the car I have to admit after all these years my ignorance was astounding. I left home early in the morning and drove the 500 miles incident free through my state capital city and through one of the worst storms ever. I arrived at last light and delivered the car to the new owner. I would not recommend such a trip to any new T owner and still wonder about all the horrible things that could have had me stuck on the side of the road. even one flat tyre would have been enough to delay my trip to have me driving in the dark! To think, this was even done without a cell phone! Kevin, I suggest you have it shipped unless your T knowledge is extensive to be able to deal with the problems it might throw at you!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gilbert V. I. Fitzhugh on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 11:09 pm:

I'm not a mechanic. If my car goes blooey, it probably stays blooey until I can get it to a real mechanic and get it fixed. If your (lack of) skills are like mine, the sensible thing to do is to have the car shipped.

On the other hand, if you were dominated by a need to be sensible, you wouldn't be buying a Model T in the first place. And what an adventure this could be! So, what to do?

Can you find TWO friends, preferably (but not absolutely necessarily) with some Model T smarts, to accompany you with a truck and trailer? At each stage of the return trip, one friend rides with you and the other follows with the trailer. Maybe you let the accompanying friend do some of the T driving. Each of your friends gets some of the fun of riding in/driving the T, and some of the drudgery of schlepping a trailer behind you at 35 mph (and MUCH less on hills). If the T has a fatal failure (fatal to the continuation of the trip, not fatal to you!), you put it on the trailer and all drive home to where you can fix it. Until that point, which with luck won't occur, you'll all have had a great time.

I'm assuming you live fairly far south on the South Island, and the car is fairly far north on the North Island, or vice versa. If the car is 1,000 miles west in Australia, I suggest you rent a boat.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gilbert V. I. Fitzhugh on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 11:11 pm:

I'm not a mechanic. If my car goes blooey, it probably stays blooey until I can get it to a real mechanic and get it fixed. If your (lack of) skills are like mine, the sensible thing to do is to have the car shipped.

On the other hand, if you were dominated by a need to be sensible, you wouldn't be buying a Model T in the first place. And what an adventure this could be! So, what to do?

Can you find TWO friends, preferably (but not absolutely necessarily) with some Model T smarts, to accompany you with a truck and trailer? At each stage of the return trip, one friend rides with you and the other follows with the trailer. Maybe you let the accompanying friend do some of the T driving. Each of your friends gets some of the fun of riding in/driving the T, and some of the drudgery of schlepping an empty trailer behind you at 35 mph (and MUCH less on hills). If the T has a fatal failure (fatal to the continuation of the trip, not fatal to you!), you put it on the trailer and all drive home to where you can fix it. Until that point, which with luck won't occur, you'll all have had a great time.

I'm assuming you live fairly far south on the South Island, and the car is fairly far north on the North Island, or vice versa. If the car is 1,000 miles west in Australia, I suggest you rent a boat.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gilbert V. I. Fitzhugh on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 11:12 pm:

Sorry about the double post. Someday I'll understand how this stuff works.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tony Bowker on Friday, February 20, 2015 - 11:59 pm:

I just checked the mileage between the north end and the south en of the south island of New Zealand, it is only about 400 miles. I don't think the poster was posing a serious question!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Saturday, February 21, 2015 - 06:22 am:

Gee your a winner Tony, remind me not to get you to plan a journey for me lol, Bluff to Kaitaia is 1,974K's, perhaps your calculator makes that 400 miles but mine reads 1,226 miles. Because of ferry/fuel/accomadation costs I'm planning to fly up if i get a car at the top of the North Island. If this deal falls over and I end up with a car closer to home I'll drive up with a trailer and the issue wont eventuate but I am looking forward to the adventure mad or not!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Karl Gilchrist on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 02:30 am:

Kevin There are two issues the first is if the car is mechanically sound to drive 1000 miles many are not but all can be made so with time and the second thing is how much experience do you have with driving a T. I have a lot of experience but still wouldn't drive my T for such a long distance. Even though our roads aren't as bad or congested as other peoples 40 mph max on State Higheway 1 for 1000 miles would be a long slow and awkward trip. If any thing went wrong forgot driving into the local garage and expecting them to fix it. Odds on they won't even know how to make it move let alone fix it. I can tell you there are no parts at REPCO or Super Cheap Auto other than Oil for a Model T! Karl in the Manawatu


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Glen McConachie on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 04:33 am:

Hi Kevin, what part of the country are you based in? Generally I wouldn't expect too many issues doing a pick up and drive trip. If the car has a current WOF you should be pretty right. Ensure you have a jack, tyre levers and a couple of spare tyres and tubes. Maybe a head gasket and make sure driveshaft, universal joint and axle bearings are well greased. Change the oil before leaving and carry some extra to top up with. We have just finished a 2000km tour with the model t club to the west coast with very few problems and between AA plus and members of the club around the country you have some fall back options if something was to break. What part of the country do you live in? I'm in Dunedin


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Eugene Story on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 05:13 am:

By the time you pay the cost of motels for six or seven days, eating out for three meals a day several flat tires, end up hiring someone to haul you home anyway. rent a u haul or call freighter Jim. In the long run you will save enough money to buy another model T
Gene


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By george house . . .caldwell county, TX on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 07:41 am:

But ...but.... But .... Freighter Jim very seldom gets to NZ :o(


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 08:25 am:

Hi Glen I'm in Twizel, spent a bit of time with Gary today getting some valuable pointers. Trip starts soon, leaving in the morning, ferry tomorrow night then Hawkes Bay mid week. Only 630 miles plus detours/tripping around so should be less risky but theres other units around further north. Might be calling for help from you Karl on the way back thru Palmy....lol hope not! Anyway its all or nothing in 5 hrs....let you all know how its going later.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tony Bowker on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 01:51 pm:

Glen, your T was very prepared for your trip, even then you had problems, you were anything but a novice and you had support of a couple of other model T (and I suspect a support vehicle).
Our friend Kevin is planning on driving first 600 miles, including crossing Auckland harbor bridge which is freeway, then a ferry trip and finally 400 miles through a very mountainous area, all with an unprepared car....
I stand by by assertion that you can only drive 400 miles North to South in the South Island and Kevin will have problems.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 02:00 pm:

Kevin, best of luck to you, please be sure to take lots of pictures and give us an update on how it goes! :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Glen McConachie on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 04:30 pm:

Hi Kevin, Gary will have been good help with tips and pointers. Pass on our regards to him and have a good run. No doubt we will be seeing you on runs in the future


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Peter Kable - Kiama NSW OZ on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 06:20 pm:

It is obvious from some of the comments above that a good percentage of restored Model T's these days are far from the condition of a new Model T Ford when it left the factory.

Yes if something is not up to par you will have a problem but everything in reasonable condition, No.

If it was in good condition it should be able to be driven the 1000 miles in a couple of days if needed or a bit longer if the plan was to have a relaxing drive.

Here is an example, In 1931 19 year old Ferne Degitz from Payson near Quincy Illinois drove with her father to Fair Oaks California in their 1926 Fordor Sedan. A distance of about 2000 miles they did the trip in 6 days. The first day covering 485 miles. In those days the roads were far worse than todays. At times it took 2 hours to drive 35 miles, Ferne had to drive at one point for 17 miles in low gear and found her leg would not hold her up when she alighted from the car after. It was hot and dusty most of the way. They even had to sleep in and around the car most of the nights (no motels or even camp grounds then).

You can read the whole story in Volume 23 No 2 of the Vintage Ford page 8.

Kevin, I have not seen exactly what Model T you will be driving, being early or late having beaded edged tires or not may make it more or less of a problem. Still, Go for it!!!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Sunday, February 22, 2015 - 06:37 pm:

Kevin, if you want some pointers on what to bring and how to handle a long trip in the T, PM Dean Yoder, he regularly goes on long trips in his Ts. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Karl Gilchrist on Monday, February 23, 2015 - 10:05 pm:

Kevin I'm in Feilding. If you have any problems just sing out. I'm one of the local GPs here so most people in Feilding now me or of me (I suspect they think the doctor is a little crazy with the old cars he drives to work )


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Derek Kiefer - Mantorville, MN on Monday, February 23, 2015 - 10:24 pm:

People who never take any risks don't have any good stories to tell.

You'll be fine... or you'll have a great story. Or both.. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Friday, March 06, 2015 - 04:07 am:

Well guys I'm home, after looking at a few T's I purchased a 27 Coupe in Napier which is 1000 km from home. However I dont have too many hard luck stories or exiting events as this T came with a trailer so I simply towed it home. I spent a few days in Blenheim on the way home and off loaded the T and set off on a wine trail adventure for the day only getting 4.4K's before stopping due to no petrol getting through. A couple of guys staying at the same came camp passed and after helping for a bit took me home to get my car & trailer. That night and the next pulling apart the fuel system finally cleared the particles blocking the lines & bends it was all go again. However this breakdown & the time spent repairing it many people in the camp spent time advising and helping and it was a very social affair resulting in me meeting new friends and having a lot of fun. What a laugh learning to drive... the hardest part stopping at a stop sign without stalling and then getting out to crank in public as the new 6v I put in that day just didnt wind quick enough. Anyway unloaded when I got home this arvo, Sorted my tools & spares kit, refitted the 12v Battery and have driven around town a few times and I'm really getting the hang of it now. Can't wait for the sun to rise tomorrow and give it a crank and more practise lol. Thanks for all the ideas guys. Not driving all the way home has probably robbed me of meeting a heap of new friends but were home all safe and so is the car. I will try and post a few pics in a day or so, Thanks


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Chuck Lebeda, Humboldt, SD on Friday, March 06, 2015 - 06:33 am:

Kevin: Allís well that ends well. Model Tís are Ďsocialí machines. Donít worry, based on my experiences, you will have plenty of opportunity to break down and meet people. Tís are great this way. I have a friend over here from New Zealand, John McCarthy. He teaches vehicle mechanics over here and is really good with flathead V-8ís. Also like that NZ wine. You wouldnít know him by chance?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Friday, March 06, 2015 - 06:34 am:

Ha ha! That's great Kevin. I was hoping you'd give us an update. Definitely post pics!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Friday, March 06, 2015 - 08:23 am:

Glad everything worked out and you had a good time.

The car should crank fine on 6 volts, before you give up on the 6 volt battery try cleaning all the contacts and make sure you have a good ground.

:-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Friday, March 06, 2015 - 08:45 am:

Agree with Mark. If a car will start by hand crank, six volts should be more than enough. In addition to checking ground and cleaning contacts, be sure you don't have twelve volt cables.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Friday, March 13, 2015 - 05:23 pm:

Don't think I know John McCarthy, where in NZ does he live? Its bigger than some people think lol. On the way home I met a lady who works in the Christchurch "i site" and she said a tourest come in at midday and said he was only in NZ for one day and wanted to drive around both Islands before he left the next day! Good advice on 6v guys I will try the connections etc. I'm having great fun with the T and every day since I've been home I drive it plus every evening we do a 20 odd K loop drive which includes a very steep hill she just manages in top gear. This is helping get familar with any noises, how & when to lube/grease, what positions the advance/retard etc plus its fun. Having trouble loading pics with take some more at a reduced size later.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Val Soupios on Friday, March 13, 2015 - 07:11 pm:

I had a 1953 Chrysler with a Hemi in it and it started on 6 Volts in sub zero weather so there is no reason a Model T won't start just fine on 6 volts if everything is set the way it should be. Most starting problems are caused by using cables designed for 12 volt systems.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Saturday, March 14, 2015 - 04:02 am:

Thanks that has been mentioned so I'll check this out.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Saturday, March 14, 2015 - 07:59 am:

Kevin, can you post some pictures of your recent acquisition? The maximum file size for pics on this forum is 194K. If you don't have an application for resizing pictures, this website can do it for you:

www.picresize.com

:-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Monday, March 23, 2015 - 10:59 pm:

Managed to resize some pics & will upload next. Having lots of fun learning how to change oil, do daily oiling etc but mostly driving it is just a good experience that makes me smile... although this one does drive better than other ones I tried. Perhaps being the last model made plus having a full restore job in the 90's everything is as it should be. Being a 27 it has the vaporise Carby and I believe these were a bit of a flop in some ways. I really want to crank start each time but it takes about 6 cranks when cold ( I can handle that) but about 30 cranks when hot. Bit annoying as soon as I give upand get in and it starts first or second crank on the button (still 12v). The car came with the older model Inlet & exhaust manifolds and it would mean getting a carby and linkages etc but do you guys think it would crank a lot easier? Or is there something else i can do to speed the crank process? Thanks pic to follow


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Monday, March 23, 2015 - 11:16 pm:

T PicsT pic 2T pic 3T Pic 4T pic 5


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Karl Gilchrist- New Zealand on Monday, March 23, 2015 - 11:47 pm:

Kevin Looks nice. One thing you should consider is accessory brakes (Rocky Mountain , AC etc) the standard transmission brake set up gives you poor brakes and leaves you very vulnerable should be unlucky enough to shear an axle key or break an axle i.e no brakes other than the emergency/park brake which is useless. Reproductions are available ex USA and are easy to fit (particularly as your car is a left hooker) Mine where fabricated by the New Zealand Model T guru Ian Bonny and are fantastic. Karl


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 01:22 am:

Nice!
Drive carefully, and enjoy! W2


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By kep on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 01:25 am:

Sometimes you have to richen the mixture half a turn when starting from hot. Not always true but has been true for me in the past. That might help with starting.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Keith Buckley on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 02:16 am:

Kevin....you seem like a kid in the candy store! Congratulations on your new adventure. Great looking car! I too am a newbie, with my first Model T, but I had to wait 50 years to get mine. Do what Karl G said. I had Rocky Mountain Brakes installed, Before I took delivery of the car! I only have driven it in my front yard, since I took delivery of it in Dec. I have been going over every inch of the car, just to learn and or upgrade it, yet trying to keep it as stock as possible. Soon I hope to get a driving lesson from a friend who lives in the area, whom I met on the forum here, as he has rebuilt my NH Carb and so much more, I am very indebted to him. Everyone from day one told me to get the Rocky Mountain Brakes, I live in the foothills, so I am surrounded by hills, so I know I won't be sorry for my purchase.
Keith


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve McClelland on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 02:40 am:

Kevin
Great looking T you did good..! I did notice in the 3rd picture a mess of skid marks in the parking area, you may want to back off the throttle a little bit when taking off that will keep your wheel spinning to a minimum, tyres aren't cheap for these things.... Wink, wink... 7;^)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Schedler, Sacramento on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 02:48 am:

Don't forget to take a few cases of beer. I'd make that trip in a heart beat!! Aux brakes are a great safety item, but regular T brakes have been adequate for a bunch of years now.

Don't spill anything on that beautiful upholstery.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 03:11 am:

Karl & Keith - Hal Schedler almost said what I was going to suggest:

I also believe that Rocky Mountain Brakes would be a very good idea for safety, however, Kevin has one thing going for him in that beautiful '27 coupe in the area of brakes. Being a '27, he has the large drum wheel brakes as opposed to the small drum brakes on your '25 Keith. Properly adjusted, those large drum brakes will lock up the rear wheels. That was one of many improvements in the "new, improved" '26 - '27 Model T Ford!

One thing though, as you are just getting "acquainted" with all of the "intricacies" of Model T driving Kevin. Especially as you have no Rocky Mountain brakes yet. You mentioned some hill climbing,......In the interest of safety, it's an excellent "rule of thumb" to always descend a hill in the same gear you would have to use to climb that hill! Have fun, but be safe!

Kevin,....nice pictures,.....and you REALLY found a beauty! Congratulations,......harold


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 04:23 am:

Thanks guys, yes it is a good example. Keith you have great self control still only driving on your property I done a test drive around a large country block and then trailered it home but couldn't wait to get it out and going however i do live in a small country town with no traffic lights etc. Theres only one way to learn and thats get going but another trick is driving the T only (no other car)for about a week really helped. Plus every night after tea we do a loop road run thats 18k's (about 11 miles) which includes a very steep uphill (just manages in top gear) which is mainly open road and virtually no traffic. Took the GPS once and it says I travel between 35 & 39 mph. Today I drove an extended run of 22 miles which included 3 stops (2 hot and one cold start), two very steep uphills and 1 steep downhill with a right angle corner at the bottom (throttle off and then first gear near bottom....this pulled her up easy with only little brake use prior to selecting 1st) ........but otherwise the road was mainly clear flat running. Filled up at gas station before and then again when finished. Done the same run tonight in my Volvo and took the mileage. Just worked consumption out and got 20.7 mpg (16.8 us mpg). Pretty happy with that considering the stops. Braking...I've never tried pulling the handbrake on when moving yet but from what you guys are saying perhaps I need this to be part of my emergency reaction moves. I was told this model had better rear brakes so that should help.
I laughed when I saw the tyres marks in the pics and wondered if I would get a comment, good spotting Steve!
On another note I was hoping to contact the people that rebuilt the car in the US to let them know the car is now on the other side of the world but safe and I'm hoping somebody on here might have heard of him. His name is "Hobart Hall" I believe. There is plaque on the car stating The car got 1st Junior at Hershey in 99, got an Senior award in 01 in MI and 1st preservation in 04 in MD.
I will recieve more info from the seller once he gets back to the states hopefully this will include contact details but on the off chance he's well know in the T scene I thought I'd ask on here.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Weeds on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 04:25 am:

Kep, thanks for the tip I'll try half a turn richer tomorrow and give her a crank...well actually I mean "Him" as I've knick named the car Gym...after 30 odd cranks each time it feels like youve been to the gym


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