My garage is an old 1920s garage, so i'm currently braving the weather to work on this, as my 29 roadster is occupying the garage currently. Soon they'll be trading spaces back and forth as the weather and such permits.
For now, I'm hashing out the small details of a flipped suspension on the front end, (as per the "Voboril" and "Gerber" dirt track cars) and although this photo does not show it,(it was a few days old) I have since modified the drive shaft and torque tube subtracting 8.5" from it as per the Laurel chassis design back in the day. Thus setting the engine back the same distance. Another crossmember has been installed taking up the front of the engine to its old stock riding height.
Engine is being created in a garage in the midwest region of Ohio at a small little known builder's humble abode complete with Bosch magneto side drive, high speed pistons, lightened flywheel, modified oil flow, (no pressure yet, maybe later if cash allows?), Model A crank, etc. etc. Later to see an OHV setup.
Rear springs to be two quarter ellipticals made from one model t front spring, as per Gerber's car, just a bit different.
Wheels will all be 26-27 Ford wires,....knock offs to come later,...well, realistically, probably never! HA!
Body style to be a bob tail or possibly a simplified version of the traditonal sprint car with a small tail section.
Let me know how I can help, I'm a little further with a similar project, Joe
Outstanding work! Very nice! I'll be in contact with you to take you up on your offer to help! Thanks in advance!!
Looking good Jason. I'm trying to locate some photos I have of a "Veedol" racer with that same suspension.
Here are some more photos I took this afternoon as I worked on it a bit more,....
Cut the T front spring I had to make two quarter ellipticals for the rear, ala John Gerber's #15 car / Robert Roof's Ford Flyer car.
Also just realized through a finding the tag I took off the new front spring that its a "low" spring,... its a 26-27 front spring, which I learned today that they were lower than the earlier ones.
So, to give myself what I'll be needing to make some room for movement at the front end over the axle, I'm exchanging the one I have for the taller one I need. I fully endorse Snyders for my T parts!!! Never had an issue, and they can't do enough for you! Wonderful people!!
Still have to make period looking rear brackets to affix the rear springs...more to come! (those pieces welded to the fame are only to brace it as I work on it,....nothing more)
How much vertical travel will your front axle have? From the photos, it seems the axle is almost touching the cross member and thus won't be able to move up when you encounter bumps. Am I missing something or not viewing your photos correctly?
With the spring that is in there, yes there is a problem right off the bat,...
I was not aware that the pre-1926 front T springs had a higher arch to them, a much higher arch. This is why I started asking around and contacting people that were familiar with this old racing setup of the 1920s and so forth.
So, with the new spring installed (should arrive early next week actually!) that issue of nowhere for the spring and front end to travel will be solved!
But, for now, yes, it wouldn't work at all! Its just there for the sake of holding everything together and so on as I work on it.
The car that I've been inspired by when dealing with the modifications of the front end has been John Gerber's #15 car, and more-so the Voboril car at the American Museum of Speed in Illinois.
Here is a link to a photo of the front end, of the Voboril car, which will be the "exact" way mine will look as this progresses and that new spring is affixed, etc. (you'll notice there will be about 1" of travl space. This was run VERY successfully by other racers of the time.
Thats kinda cool Jason. But one inch of travel isnt much. Are you planning on driving this car? or is it just a static display?
Jason, sorry the angle is not better, but in the original picture the nice Finnish of the painted parts made the picture difficult to differentiate some of the frame parts....all panted alike and black. This picture is at an angle that when I photo shopped the picture you can sorta make out some of this area. Hope this helps. My thinking is that if your going to drive this on the street you'll need at least twice this clearance. Jerry
I'm not looking to drive it on the street, though I'm sure it will see the street a little though,...we'll see. Its being done with the intention of running at exhibition races and historical living history events. No static displays here,....cars with wheels were never meant to sit still,...
Being as light as it will be, and as stout as the front spring will be, a lot of travel will not need to be maintained. The engine has been set back 8.5 inches to take off some of the weight at the front and better balance out the chassis overall.
If anyissues should arise when its completed and driven, then, as John Gerber's blacksmith had done, the frnt spring will then be taken to the next step, which is to put a horizontal bend in it to make it clear the face of the frame/front cross brace. Gerber ran the HELL out of his #15 car for YEARS and without issue of anykind with that setup. He truely was ahead of his time in many ways, both mechanical and as a race car driver.
I suggest anyone that does not own the book pick it up. "Outlaw Sprint Car Driver, Autobiography by John Gerber"
There look to be "hammer" markes atop the axle of that car?? Not simply the usual "casting" marks,....any idea on that as it seems you saw teh car for yourself with that photo you shared??
Yet another fellow who ran the same front end setup,....this is another I've had in mind but hadn't mentioned as of yet.
Jason, if you haven't already checked it out www.jalopyjournal.com is geared toward street rodders, but there are a number of members who have or are building Model T speedsters or racers. Lastly, let me know how I can help with your project. Hoping to get mine done in 2009 and make the last AARA exhibition, Joe
Thank you so very much,...I've actually been a member on there for a few years, but thannk you none the less for giving me a heads up about it!
Oh and The Antique Auto Racing Association exhibition,...The "last" one?...or the last one for 2009?
I shot you a PM,....talk with you soon.
Anyone have any info on "Bob Maze" by chance? Sprint racer of the mid 1920s.
There's only a snippet online and through research I've only been able to find little more on him, an nothing further on his car??!!
Where did you find your friction shocks? They appear to be either originals or very well made reproductions? I missed several pair on ebay a while back,... was working while they were going off!
Jason, the shocks are original. Originals are pretty pricey (as are the reproductions) $500 plus for a complete set of 4.
I've been involved with Model T's since the mid 70's when prices for these type of things was still reasonable. These were from my "old stock"
I'm of the contention that if you have more time than money, that you could make your own (they are very simple)and have them look period correct.
As far as the last AARA race, I meant in the year 2009, although I've heard rumor that the participation has been down amd the cost to race (exhibition) has gone up, making the future of the organization somewhat "cloudy"?
It would be a shame, I attended the first race back in 1973 at Carrolltown, and have been a member on and off over the years.
Wow, this thread has gotten interesting. The best thing I can say about it is that you guys must really be good typists! So many words!
Since we seem to be getting back on topic I'll post these photos, maybe you've seen them before, maybe not...
I don't want to re-kindle an argument but there's somthing funny about those spring perches in the last two photos. It almost looks like the spring is behind them and the frame tips are bihind the front axle, which would allow full travel of the spring.
Looks a lot like Johnny Gerber's setup to me, if anything, I've reviewed the photos in this autobiography and some photos taken at the museum where Gerber's car is currently.... Gerber had the front spring bend on the horizontal pushing the tips of the springs out and forward. So the perches were facing backwards a little.
It very well may be the same idea and engineering from two different fellows.
Thanks for the photos...The first I have,...did I get that one from you? I know someone had been kind enough to send it to me about a month ago. Again thanks!