Oil change discovery: Uh-oh. This can't be good.

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2015: Oil change discovery: Uh-oh. This can't be good.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 01:24 am:

Today's driving brought the roadster's odometer to 520 miles, so it was time for an oil change. After I drained the oil I found this in the pan.


10-32 x brass machine screw. Now I'm wondering where it came from and what I should do about it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Allan Bennett - Australia on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 02:24 am:

Steve, I can't think of anywhere that screw was used in a T, of any year, certainly not in the engine and transmission. I would be inclined to just carry on as before, treating its discovery as a bit of a mystery, with no harm done.

Others may prove me dotty.

Allan from down under.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By George n Los Angeles CA on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 02:28 am:

Does he end look like it snapped off of anything.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Stroud on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 04:00 am:

Steve, is there anything ABOVE the transmission inspection cover that has that kind of screw that could have fallen into the trans. with the cover removed, maybe from the previous owner? Interesting indeed, hope it isn't serious. Keep us posted. Dave


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John T. Tannehill III, Hot Coffee, MS on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 05:43 am:

Is that the size of a magneto post bolt?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Henrichs on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 05:50 am:

Screw that holds on (or held) the cover plate for the coil box switch?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dave Hjortnaes, Men Falls, WI on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 08:35 am:

College boy prank? :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 08:51 am:

I also think it came from the coil box switch while the transmission inspection lid was open?
Not much harm done by a small brass screw, hopefully - just keep on driving and check the coils insulation for any minor damage when you have the hogshead off for band replacement in the future :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 08:59 am:


I'm afraid this is it. If one is out, the other two will probably go too. And then...
Drat!!!
I should have mashed the ends.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:09 am:

Guess you'll be busy pulling the engine then :-(
Always the stuff that's hardest to get at when you need to fix it..
It's going to be sedan weather soon enough, wasn't it just a new timing gear your sedan needed? Give it a used steel gear & have a Ford to drive while you take the transmission apart on the runabout :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Zibell, Huntsville, AL on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:34 am:

Another fastener that needs to be peened or staked.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:39 am:

Is there some way to get a look at that area with a borescope or inspection mirror before you pull the engine out?

I would hate to see you go through all that trouble just to find out that all three screws were still present and tight.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:44 am:

I may be able to get a look, but I know what I'll see if I do. I don't think there's another possible source. :-(


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Dallas TX on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 10:02 am:

Wow, that does not look like a very good idea......! Balancing the reciprocating parts is great. I would never build another engine without doing that.

The transmission I would just balance the flywheel, select magnet positions to even out as best as can be done, and then not worry too much about the rest.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les VonNordheim on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 08:12 pm:

Originally, I only balanced the flywheel, triple gears, crankshaft, rods and pistons. The engine still did not run smooth. Later, I balanced the transmission drums and clutch plate....after that, the engine has run smooth. Some drums are so far out of balance that there is not enough material to safely balance.
When I find this condition, it time to select another used drum/clutch plate that I can safely balance that will not break or come apart.
That's the way I balance the transmission. Have also balanced the brake drum and clutch plate as an assembly and marked them as a pair.
I use a static balancer like what Steve has shown.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Kelsey on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:29 pm:

Bummer! Murphy's law strikes the best of us.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Andrew Benoit on Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 09:41 pm:

Steve,
I am wondering if you could balance that drum with some Babbitt? That's the way the con rods were balanced on my B motor in the sixties. I found this out when I tore the motor down last year. The Babbitt showed no signs of breaking away.
Andrew


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Sunday, December 13, 2015 - 12:07 am:

If the weight is intact, I'll replace the screw, be sure all three screws are tight, and braze them so they'll stay put.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Allan Bennett - Australia on Sunday, December 13, 2015 - 03:34 am:

Steve, brazing brass is fraught with difficulty. Just peen them over, and SOLDer them if you must.

Hope this helps.
Allan from down under.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 08:45 am:

Wow, Steve, I see from your blog that you didn't waste any time tearing into the roadster to find the source of that screw! Please keep us posted on what you find.

Best of luck to you on the repair and other upgrades you have planned for the roadster. :-)

pic


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 09:54 am:

While I have the radiator off it's going to Tom Nolte to have its leaking seam fixed.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ed in California on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 10:12 am:

Ive never seen a weight like that added to a drum? In afterthought, isn't this a little overkill that eventually leads to unintended consequences?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Fred Dimock, Newfields NH, USA on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 10:35 am:

I don't see anything wrong with the screw. :-)

There is still enough of the slot left for the blade of a screwdriver and better than that it still looks old.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 10:40 am:

The only thing wrong with that screw is that he's got it in his hand.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les VonNordheim on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 10:47 am:

Steve,
In all the parts you buy from estate sales....don't you have a better balanced drum to start with than this one?
Also, it is very difficult for a radiator guy to solder up seams in old radiators that will hold up with out taking them apart in order to properly clean each seam or joint. The areas to be joined by soldering need to be completely clean in order to obtain a strong bond. In the soldering world....Cleanliness is next to Godliness.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les VonNordheim on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 10:56 am:

Steve,
In all the parts you buy from estate sales....don't you have a better balanced drum to start with than this one?
Also, it is very difficult for a radiator guy to solder up seams in old radiators that will hold up with out taking them apart in order to properly clean each seam or joint. The areas to be joined by soldering need to be completely clean in order to obtain a strong bond. In the soldering world....Cleanliness is next to Godliness.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 12:33 pm:

Steve, I've never seen tranny drums balanced before. Sounds kind of a Montana 500 kind of thing to do. Since you have already weakened that reverse drum with 6 mounting holes you might as well put the screw back. To stake the back side of the screws don't you have to remove the brass mount? If it is off then you can braze or solder and then stake the mounting screws... Do all that and you will have to balance again!

Since you have it so nice and clean why not just remove and reinstall all your screws with Locktight?

I assume since you did this to reverse you have also balanced the other drums, clutch drum and plate, crankshaft, triple gears,flywheel, cam and fan pulley. Maybe you may want to take the time to balance your driveline also.

I don't go craze with balancing, I like to be able to feel that my car is running... I just hate it when you push the starter crank handle in for starting only to discover it is already running!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 12:49 pm:

Steve, I just looked again as you said "three screws". So you mounted with three screws and drilled to get balance? I thought I was seeing a bunch of weight screws but now see they are drill holes. Those reverse drums are delicate. I don't like the idea of pounding on it for staking and really hate the idea of heating it up to solder or braze. But that's just me, I would never drill holes in my drum either.

Respectfully, TH


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Scott Rosenthal in Cincinnati Oh on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 12:57 pm:

I like your concept Steve. I should think solder or Loctite would make this plenty durable. Not like anything is able to bang into this once it's assembled.
Regards,
Scott


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 01:02 pm:

At least one other person considers balancing drums to be worthwhile - just sayin' :-)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56jutHY-qDA


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Dewey, N. California on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 01:40 pm:

Balancing drums is worthwhile, but don't think I would have done it that way but would have enlarged the holes on the heavy side. I didn't realize they could be that far out!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 07:36 pm:

Mark, Thanks for that video link. That is an interesting set of videos. I love that Mike Bender is explaining his work in plain English and that he is clearly showing how to do each step... simple enough even for me to follow!

TH


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 08:58 pm:

Balance of the drums does make a difference. But sometimes, close, is close enough. This is especially true on lower speed engines, like a model T (anything under 2000 rpm is low speed).
I quite frankly do not remember which one it was. But one of the model Ts I had years ago had an off-balance drums condition. Sometimes it shook a little. Sometime it didn't shake at all. I realized that two different drums were off balance a little, and how badly it shook depended on how the drums lined up. So, I got in the habit that if it shook a little? I would press the clutch pedal a little bit under light power which would slip the clutch and realign the drums. I would do that two or three times as needed until I liked the total balance.
Ever since that car, I have done a quick static balance on the drums when I go through a transmission.

I have never had to do nearly that much to balance one. SO FAR, I have just found another drum if it was anywhere near that bad.

Have to run to the store. A balancing suggestion later.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 09:09 pm:

Les, this work was done almost three years ago, and at the time that was the only reverse drum I had that wasn't cracked. Since then I've picked up a few transmissions, so I may have a better one now.

I noticed that in the video Mike mentioned using Locktite, so I think that's what I'll do. If I remember correctly, the reverse drum was the only one that required adding a weight to balance it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan McEachern on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 09:22 pm:

Do what you want, but I would never drill a thru hole in the web of a reverse or low drum. A hole is just a stress riser begging for a crack to start. I've had new drums needing 30 grams of metal removed to balance them and that was done without drilling any holes. I would just hate to see a drum fail because of added holes- they are fragile enough as is. Remove metal from the opposite side or tin the web and add lead or babbitt- done properly it won't come loose and if you preheat the whole drum there is little risk of cracking from the heat involved.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 09:31 pm:

Dan, how hot would you preheat the drum? I like the lead idea. It would be easy to adjust the weight downward with a grinder.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Donnie Brown North Central Arkansas on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 11:39 pm:

Steve, I had Mike build the engine for my 27 touring. He balanced the low and brake drums with screws or grinding. I tore down 12 different transmissions trying to find a good reverse drum. All were cracked except one and it was pitted more than I wanted. So I have a new reverse drum. It is like the repro drum that Mike showed that was balanced when new and machined from billet. It is also heavier in the web thickness. I was impressed with the new drum. I do not know where he buys them but I liked it. My low and brake drums were pretty nice as we found several that were useable, so we used the best ones. But out of 12 transmissions, about 1/2 of the low and brake drums were also cracked. But remember to save any cracked or broken drums that have good gears. It is a lot cheaper to use a good used gear than to buy a new drum with a new gear. For years everyone threw away the cracked drums, because there was no use for them. Now a lot of folks wish they had those good gears back ... good luck with the rebuild.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don Skille on Monday, December 14, 2015 - 11:45 pm:

The flywheel and transmission on a T needs to be balanced since it runs off of the end of the crankshaft. I think that it is as important as balancing the engine. As for the reverse drum shown above I never add weight. I don't like to grind anything either. I put the drum in a vise with brass jaws in it and file the slots already there on the heavy side until it is balanced. When it is finished you can hardly tell it was balanced unless you look close. I use an 8 inch half round bastard cut file.

I went to a trade school in the mid fifties to become a machinist and the first six weeks as projects we used a hack saw and a file to make open end wrenches and other things. A few guys quit but as it turned out for me it was the best training of all. The guys that quit said they came to learn how to run the equipment and not how to use the hand tools.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Paul Mikeska, Denver CO on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 12:12 am:

I always balance the transmission drums. Most are not to far off but I have scrapped a few that were way out of balance. I agree with Dan. Never drill a hole through the web.

(Message edited by paulmikeska on December 15, 2015)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 12:54 am:

Donnie, I think the new drums come from Dave Nolting. He has an ad in the VF.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Dewey, N. California on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 02:42 am:

Don's posting reminded me of wood shop class at Humboldt State University back around 1975. For the first half of the semester we were only allowed hand tools. This taught us (those that didn't know) how important grain direction is, the importance of properly sharpened tools and a feel for the wood. I thought then, and do now, that it is a valid training method. I'll bet Don knows how to run the machinery, but also how to get good results with hand tools, that sometimes is quicker than getting the machinery set up for the job!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 04:51 am:

I'm Ba-ack! Wow, this thread grows fast.

One of the points I was working toward when I got interrupted was what Dan McE said and Paul M seconded. I do not like to drill a hole anywhere in the transmission drums. They are weak enough to begin with and any amount of grinding, filing, or drilling, may create a beginning point for a failure not far in the future.
The funny reality is, that such a hole could actually be worse than running a drum with minor cracks that have already formed on their own.
Minor cracks can be repaired. Even badly cracked drums can be repaired by a good welder that knows how. As I have said for years, please don't scrap drums that are slightly cracked. In a few more years, they MAY be worth fixing. Besides. That is what "behind the garage" is for.

As to balancing drums. As I started to say earlier, it does help to have reasonably well balanced drums in a model T. Ever since one car convinced me about that, I have always checked the drums for static balance when I have a transmission apart. Static balancing, and dynamic balancing are NOT the same thing. However, under again about 2000 rpm, and the given diameter of T transmission drums, there is very likely not much difference. And some drums are way out of balance, as I found out.
Again, as I started to say earlier, SO FAR, I have generally been able to find another good drum that balance was fairly close, and I have not needed to balance any drum that was off much. SO FAR I have not needed to remove more than a rough-surface grind (just smooth it a little) on the heavy side to bring it in really close (again, sometimes close is close enough).
I do, however think about these things a lot. One of the nicest looking, heaviest castings, best over-all reverse drums I have ever seen did NOT get put into my mostly '13 because the balance was terrible! And I had another good drum that balanced easily. I suspect that I will want to use that nice drum, maybe on the '15 runabout. After some thought, I had an idea. Instead of removing weight on the heavy side, I think I will try to add weight on the lighter side. I think I will try to wrap a small piece of strap steel around the cast iron spoke of the drum. There is plenty of room between all the drums and gears to allow for this. By heating and squeezing the strap steel onto the spoke, it will fit tight. By brazing the ends together, and shrinking it a little more, it will never work loose. And I can do that without getting the drum hot enough to crack in the process.
The first effort will involve trial and error sizing the strap steel band. The effort will be to make the lighter side very slightly heavier. Then, after it is brazed together, the strap steel band itself can be drilled or ground slightly for final balance without weakening the drum itself any.
That is how I intend to try it. Maybe someone else could be crazy enough to try it also.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Stroud on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 05:18 am:

This is a bit of topic, but is relevant. My now deceased friend/mentor showed me a transmission drum(no idea which one now) that had at least 1/8" to 3/16" difference in the thickness of the outer part of the drum, maybe more. It appeared to have been cast off center. That would be very hard to balance, and if it was, the thinner side would most likely be very prone to cracking. Needless to say, he didn't use it. Dave


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bud Holzschuh - Panama City, FL on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 08:18 am:

I have been trying to to imagine what Don Skille suggested. I think hes' saying to remove a little material from these areas to balance the drum. If not too much material had to be removed and it was done with a file and shaped smoothly ... it would seem to be a much better alternative for balancing.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Paul Vitko on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 09:06 am:

Every rotating part on a T that I have checked is out of balance a little or a lot.

I quit removing any metal from T drums in favor of counter balancing them to leave as much strength as possible. A jillion car tires are balanced that way.

With a drum in a balancer as shown above washers or nuts are taped to the webs until the drum balances just slightly heavy on that side.

The counter weights are set on a balance scale and equalized with strips of 1/8" steel. The strips are drilled for a small bolt on each end and bolted across the web then brazed Nothing is drilled or brazed to the iron web.

Last the steel strips are ground down until the balance is correct.

I have spent hours carefully removing iron on an already weak drum to balance it. This method is much faster and does not weaken the drum.

To each his own!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 09:35 am:

David,That is called a core shift and it happen's from time to time.With everything built exact???? and Ford selling all they could build do any believe Ford held to the print on the OD of the drum's???????????? Bud in Wheeler,Mi.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By john kuehn on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 09:36 am:

Very interesting thread about transmission drums.

It seems that Ford must have made a few unbalanced drums along the way. Maybe this has been mentioned before but there must have been more than a few T's that came from the factory with out of balance transmission drums. When the drums were produced did Ford try to check them for balance?

I have a feeling that when Ford started the engines initially and if they seemed to run out fairly well, that was it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 10:23 am:

I don't know how most of you balance something like this where, apparently, nothing was done at the factory to balance it and removal of material from any point is dicey but I think I'd start out by determining how much needed to be removed by adding to the light side first. Maybe magnets or taping metal to the drum. It would go a long way in figuring what method to use. I assume drilling the inside of the drum itself it out.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 10:35 am:

Paul, something like this?


I like the idea of not removing any of the drum or making holes in it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem - SE Michigan on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 10:36 am:

I'm sure Ford wasn't too concerned. Speeds at the time were low enough to not make this an issue. Consider that we drive these cars twice as fast as anyone would have guessed during the Model T era.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Paul Vitko on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 11:16 am:

Nice drawing Steve. That's the idea, the steel balance weights could be cut to match the angle braces on the drum web.
I have forty or so transmission drums. None are balanced.
The heavy solid drive shaft I checked was over an ounce out of balance. All my triple gears are not equal. If you look carefully at a number of crankshafts the heavy grinding had to be done in a very short time. To me balancing is a good way to save expensive trouble.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 01:00 pm:

John, Ford had a grueling inspection and quality control procedure for the engines. As seen in the video I have linked the engine is started and then tested. Only the best balanced, most perfect engines are allowed to be passed on down the line for final assembly of the car.

In the following link you can see three cars tested, all three passed the multi-point, precision quality control inspection.

Starting Model T Engine

TH


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 02:50 pm:

Interesting thread, and it's especially interesting to see the different opinions on the importance (or not) of balancing the drums. I'm thinking that the "opinion" of one or more of the "Montana 500" guys would carry some weight (no pun intended) in this thread,.....harold


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By john kuehn on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 02:52 pm:

Looks like to me it was crank and go and hope for the best! Neat video.

As fast as production was going the transmission section surely would have inspectors watching the assembly shop putting them together. Maybe?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 04:17 pm:

The end of the assembly line wasn't the first time the engine was spun at speed - the engines were driven by an electric motor earlier in the process to run in the babbitt. The ampere draw was checked until it got down to a certain level and the particular engine was considered OK. Excessive sounds or shakes would also cause a reject to a repair workshop, though the running in was done at 750 rpm and inbalances at higher rpms wouldn't be noticed.

There was a long list the engine testers had to check for - among them "noisy transmission" referring to the 1915 book "Ford Methods and Ford Shops" by Arnold and Faroute, side 132/133.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Allan Bennett - Australia on Wednesday, December 16, 2015 - 09:44 pm:

David, the drum with the thick side is most likely a result of the casting not being centred before it was machined. If the casting had a dag which upset getting it properly positioned for machining, it may well have been machined way off from standard.

Sometimes this can be corrected by re-machining. If the drum is held on centre as machined, the our of whack section can be machined off on the inside of the drum. Otherwise, I eschew them in favour of a more accurately machined drum.

Allan from down under.


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