As we all know early parts are real hard to find but often people throw away parts because they are considered too far gone.
I thought you might like to see a rebuild of an early engine block which one keen Model T owner has saved.
First pictures are the block as purchased.
It has been welded up and at the moment it is being machined. Yesterday when I was visiting the machine shop the cylinders were being sleaved.
Welding has resulted in some distortion and the mains will need to be fully white metaled instead of the original cast iron block upper bearing and white metal caps.
So don't throw away those blocks just because there is a cracked valve seat or some other problem.
Thanks for the amazing pictures. I never would have thought that you could have salvaged that block.
Nice to see someone repairing something.
those first 2 photo's can't be the same block? each one has the opposite sides taken out, neat job though, I had a 12 to re-babbitt and assemble after many pieces welded back in, the machinist had decked an 1/16" of the bottom of the block, that made for some fun and games to get all in a running order for the crank and the pan!
Incredible! I like to see things like this being saved. Several years ago, I stumbled onto a thread following the restoration of a (circa 1910 if I recall correctly) one cylinder boat motor. I found it while researching my early gasoline carriage, and followed it from fairly early until completion of the motor almost a year later. It was broken up and saltwater rotted badly. I still have the bookmark on my computer, maybe I should check to see if the site is still up?
Such things can be saved, and if that early and rare, should be.
I am curious about the appearance of this block in the before pictures. Some of the breaks are clearly very old, while others look rather fresh. Sometimes, repairing such damage is easier if some of the broken areas are broken the rest of the way off rather than trying to weld partial cracks or other damage.
Were donor pieces needed from a later block? (Another reason to not throw anything away. I had a badly damaged three-dip pan ('20s?) some years ago. It is currently donating to its third pan-save. I think it has one more pan-save left in it after this one.
Thanks for sharing this! I love it.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Truly inspiring Peter... Well done to all involved!
This is the same block, I selected 2 photo's showing both sides, some of the photo's had the donor parts from a 1916 block sitting in the missing parts which appears to be what the second photo is.
Your right Wayne, someone may always need a piece from a damaged block good if it can be sourced from one already broken.
A while ago a rare Australian bodied T which was a reclaimed 1916 which had been updated in 1923 with a deLuxe body lost its original motor because the first owner to attempt restoration scrapped the block because it had a cracked valve seat!!!!!
Great photos and great advice. If someone is going to toss a part -- offer it for free to someone who will save it. And no, we can't save every part every time [I would love to start a home for lost or unwanted Model T Parts in the US desert southwest -- but that probably isn't very practical] but we can encourage folks to pass on their unwanted parts etc.
After WWII P-51 Mustangs were available as military surplus. And several of them went to the air race circuit. I saw a picture from I think the 1950s air races were a P-51 had crash landed. The wings were cut off with a torch and the body and wings tossed. The engine was saved for a future airplane. Today, no one would have scrapped that same P-51 as people are restoring ones in much worse shape than that one was. But at the time, they could purchase another P-51 for a lot less than repairing the damaged plane. So even if a T part is considered "not economically feasible for repair" today, in 15, 25, or 50 years it may be one of the best parts available for repair or restoration. By the way, that is why Ghost our 1915 Centerdoor survived. My Dad didn't want to see it scrapped and he purchased it out of a Texas junkyard. Today thanks to Dad saving it (he saved it from me also -- I thought it would make a great speedster project when I was a young teenager) Bob is able to bring it back to life. [For anyone wanting to know more about Ghost please see the posting at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/142783.html ]
So yes, save those parts. And one more soap box moment. According to the life insurance actuarial tables, they expect all of us to die some day. If you have a complete drivable Model T sitting in the garage -- it will clearly be saved and not tossed. But if you have some parts that are not clearly labeled some or most of those may be tossed. A two-cylinder early Ford engine that was disassembled was tossed because the folks taking car of the estate thought they were old 1950s tractor parts. And yes, you could make a case for find a home for the 1950s tractor parts. Please have a will for the sake of your loved ones and please have a plan to keep your T parts etc. out of the smelter or land fill. If I hadn't been interested in Ts, I'm sure my Dad would have found some other folks to give them good homes. And in the case of Ghost Ė I knew I would never get around to restoring the Centerdoor so I am so thankful Bob gave Ghost a good home.
So please take Peterís advice and as much as practical and possible save those old T parts or send them on to someone else who will.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Mark Herdman at one time owned this engine block he tells me the reason it is in such a poor condition is because a scrap metal dealer smashed it up so it was lighter to carry.
Here is a photo showing the donor left side piece in place before welding.
Great job of restoring that block. I have block number 1562 that needs some repair but it is not broken up as much as this one was. It's been sitting on my shelf for over 40 years. I was going to do the job myself but now I do not have a place to preheat it and the correct welding equipment to do the job so I will have to pass it on to someone that can.
Wow that is an amazing story.
It made me think of the same story Wayne remembered about the boat motor.
I also remember seeing ads for cast iron repair in magazines years ago showing before and after views of projects.
Keep us posted on the rest of the rebuild of this engine. It looks 9787 on the serial number. Did you look up the build sheet on it?
Great job Peter. I have always said never throw anything away. It usually can be used for something. I have a large pile of sheet metal body parts that are missing large portions of them due to rust. It seems like I am always going thru the pile for a "patch" piece. I also believe that "all" the parts a person owns (even my sheet metal scrap patch pile) should be kept in the dry. If a person "can not preserve it", "do not own it". I know it belongs to whoever owns it, and its theirs to do with as they want to, but we are also caretakers of this stuff for the next generation. Nice save of a rare part. Donnie Brown ..
It would be interesting to know the cost of the block repair.
The motor has been machined and is now ready for final assembly, thought some may be interested in the final result.
When measured the block was adversely effected by the welding and was out of alignment in several directions. The end result is a block which will give years of reliable motoring for the owner, a great result.
I see a problem that will limit the years of long service for the owner! tie wire on those wrist pins is not a good thing on a T engine, pulled several down over the years that the wire found a new home in the magneto.
Also, I forgot to mention that the rods are in around the wrong way.
This is what I like to see in a throw away
this day and age. Our shop sign says
"we can fix anything but a broken heart"
save em don't junk em !!!!!!!!
Looks really nice! Peter I have to ask about one thing.
In the pic of the completed engine showing the crankshaft and rods, the photo shows the rear camshaft bearing area also. Is there a piece of the block missing where the camshaft bearing (bushing) is pressed in or is that the way the block was originally cast?
Either way the rear bearing is secure enough to be stable.
The open valve blocks do have some differences than the later models and maybe this is one of them.
Anything else Frank?
Wow, It lives! Who say's you can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear!
Rod direction makes no difference in running, but they should be all the same way.
The wire in the wrist pin bolts will not last.
Use new lock washers.
I built a 1910 engine for a local guy that started with a block almost as bad as this one. The block was repaired using donor pieces by Lock/n/Stitch in Stockton, Ca. The artistry of their work was so awesome it seemed a shame to paint the engine and hide it. Customer never told me exactly how much it cost him but indicated it was well into the thousands. We too babbited the block. We also line bored the rear can bushing, because that part of the block was replaced. This turned out not to be an issue because Lock/n/Stitch dealt with the alignment as part of the repair. They all can be repaired, all it takes is time and money. Sometimes lots of it.
I'm not a big fan of painting the inside of engines. Most of my experience is in more modern, high-performance powerplants, but I still don't like the idea of chunks of paint floating around in the lubricant.
Henry's engineers had it right, wrist pin clamp screw to the camshaft.
There is a piece missing from the block, would have been hard to replace it but there is plenty of the bloc left so it will be Ok.
Yep, Frank the rods are the other way round, as Herm stated, it does not matter. Wire on the bolts, the builder has never had any come loose in 40 plus years, maybe it depends on how good you are at doing it.
\For those who still might have some curiosity as to why the rod is engineered the way it is and not to be fitted backwards.
When the rod is on it's intake stroke and at it's 2" centre line, the wrist pin clamp is at a high point of strain, already taking up the spring loading of the rod done up, and to contend with the pulling as well on what's very marginal on the rod clamp at this point, the bolt is it's weakest link, stretch? work loose? pull the thread or pop the bolt head or could last for ever. Now the question is ' why take the risk'.
The above post by Hap Tucker about the P-51 Mustang is the reason for my post. Iíve always felt that the P-51 was the most beautiful plane ever built, except maybe for the SR-71. Now that Iím long of tooth and short of hair, Iíll be turning 80 at the end of the month, my family crowdsourced the necessary funding among themselves to pay for ride for me in the backseat of a P-51D based in Rexburg, Idaho. We, that being John, my pilot and Todd in a second P-51 as our wingman flew over the Idaho Falls 4th of July parade last Saturday, then headed for Afton, We picked up a T-6 Texan on the way and flew cover for him as all 3 of us flew Aftonís parade route. On the way back to Rexburgs parade route, John did a couple of barrel rolls and a 4 point roll at my request and Iím proud to say that I left the unused barf bag they gave me before the flight for the next guy!! It was a hell of a ride in a hell of an airplane and if anyone is interested, a video is on Legacy Flight Museum Facebook. P.S. Iíll be traveling at a more comfortable speed tomorrow when our clubs do a tour in Cache Valley. Iíll be in my 23 roadster and Iíll be back to 30 mph instead of 350!!
Iím a lurker, but I sure do enjoy reading the posts and comments of you guys. Thereís humor, knowledge and when someone gets a little snarky, there always seems to be someone else standing by with a bucket of cold water.
Ron don't sit back and be quiet.
I can tell you have the gift for using words.
Frank, you have no clue what you are talking about.
I know Ford put them to the cam side, but for no other reason that they had to chose a side so they were all a like in the engine.
The wrist pin bolt is just as strong one way as it is the other.
The picture you show is the way I put them in, away from the cam, no other reason then that is the way I do them.
The picture shows rod at power thrust, with wrist pin thrust away from the wrist pin bolt.
But with the bolt split on the side of the wrist pin end, it would be the same strength either side.
I have no clue? is that why I have a piece of paper stating I'm an Engineer and yours is a Machinest?
You state power thrust, sure, that push's down on the rod, but if you had read what I wrote correctly, I said, intake stroke, that's 100% pull on the top of the wrist pin and load on the weakest point of the rod and bolt! If the rod is fitted backwards.
I hope you never have to erect any scaffolding! with C clamping, it would be like a house of cards.
C-clamps, machinists, engineers ..... I wonder if Bruce Jenner will get a
piece of paper certifying that he's a woman ???
Well, because a person's DNA never changes, cosmetic sexual changes are an abomination. They are body mutilation in the extreme and an affront to God. Because one's gender is God-ordained, don't dare mess with God.
But wow, these Model T engines are true survivors that are amazingly durable! I think it is safe to say that no one could have thought, during the time they were being manufactured, that we could still witness such restoration this many years later. It's truly amazing. With TLC, these Model T engines just won't quit.
Frank, does your piece of engineer paper come in a role, or does it have Wal-Mart on it any place, maybe the fine print.
For what its worth....
The engine in my '21 Touring was built using wired in wrist pins and rods as per the depiction in the photo above. Admittedly, the car doesn't get any heavy use, but its been doing exactly what its supposed to do for 11 years now, without problems.
Oh.....and I also meant to say......
"Thank you" Peter, for posting a very interesting thread and for keeping us updated on the engines progress.
Make fun of it all you like Herm, we all know who's the clown!
Frank, I understand what you say about the bolt being under tension on the intake stroke but don't see how placement of the bolt makes any difference. Seems to me the strain would occur either way.
I am neither an engineer nor a machinist (although I have done a little of both), Would it be possible for someone with engineering experience to explain - using small words - why the strain on the bolt would be more (or less) if the position of the bolt were reversed?
Richard, it's the % of strain that is reduced if fitted the right way.
Simple words John, flip the rod the right way and you are pulling on more rod than bolt.
I thought I would bring this to the top for one last look
Has this engine run yet? I'm curious to know how it performs.
I would like to see photos of the actual welds and perhaps more of the technical side of how it was done.
this is 1 heck of a save as far as a engine.
I can't help but wonder,although it is only 20 hp,is there a chance engine torque could crack the welds in the block?
This block restoration with lots of pictures would make for an excellent article for the magazine and / or video for all to see, and as a reference for future restorations.
Just my humble opinion.
Hasn't this been posted before?
As G.R. Cheshire explained...
"I thought I would bring this to the top for one last look"
One last look before the 2015 is closed.
Thank you for bringing this back up. I have now bookmarked it for my future reference.
If you ever find old parts that look unusable, keep them to one side and see if you can perform miracles like this with them. That's how i got my T