The early clamshell rear axle rebuild, advice, suggestions & difficulty

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2016: The early clamshell rear axle rebuild, advice, suggestions & difficulty
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John T. Tannehill III, Hot Coffee, MS on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 08:24 pm:

I've decided to replace the 13/14 style rear axle with the correct clamshell style on my 11. Begrudgingly despite reading about the weakness of the clamshell I'm moving forward on the rebuild. Forum members your advice, suggestions and any difficulties you may have run into would be of great help. I will actually be doing two, one for the touring and one for an 11 torpedo. Hey you only live once so it seems like the time to do both. Why do one when you can do two for triple the price, ha.
I have new axles, gears and the best in spec Hyatt bearings I could find. I was going to use floating hubs but just didn't have the heart to cut the housings so they will stay with the 13/14 style rear axle and will be use on a 13 depot. On the touring I was going to use a 13 tooth pinion and 40 tooth crown gear, on the torpedo 13/39. Also your thoughts on adding a aluminum 3 speed Warford to the torpedo. My fellow hobbyists I wait to be edumacated,as always I appreciate your help.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Dallas TX on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 08:35 pm:

John,

The 6 rivet and12 rivet housings are fine. The main thing you need to do is make sure they are straight and to make sure the rivets are tight and well sealed.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike-Iowa on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 08:58 pm:

Hey John,
I cannot speak to the 6 rivet clamshell rearends but I do have a new Warford sitting in front of a 13/39 (3:1) rearend in my 1911 Open Runabout. It is a very sweet combination to say the least.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John T. Tannehill III, Hot Coffee, MS on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 09:25 pm:

Royce I know you have a lot of experience with these axles do you think the 13/40 is a good combination or should I stay stock? Royce I used a plum line to look for deviation but I kept getting unreliable measurements so I used a framing square on the tube. On the passenger side I had a 0.0040 gap at the apogee about 16 inches measured from the end of the backing plate sleeve down the tube. Thought about shrinking it with heat but I'm not sure how significant that gap would be. Your thoughts?

Mike did you use a regular closed pinion bearing or use the modern pinion bearing set up? Are you using auxiliary brakes? I have a set of small drum Benetts but only the shoe frames no rods or connectors. I can figure that part out well at least I think I can. My wheels are Repo, by McLaren. What came with the parts from the torpedo is a rectangular gas tank but I'm not sure if it's correct. I bought a repo round one just in case. I've heard about the rectangular ones but never saw one on a torpedo so I don't really know if it's real just maybe stuff that came with the basket case.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bill Harper - Keene, NH on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 09:40 pm:

Gas tanks are mentioned in this thread:

http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/153018.html?1280760469


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Art Wilson on Friday, November 11, 2016 - 10:26 pm:

I made a set of four concentric wooden washers that fit inside the bearing areas of the housing and fit over a straight piece of conduit. With the housings bolted together it is pretty easy to determine if the housings are straight and which end or ends need to be straightened by how the conduit aligns up with the holes in the outer washers as it is being inserted from either end.
To check the conduit for straightness it can be rotated in the housing assembly when it is near one of the outer washers. It should rotate in place on its axis.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike-Iowa on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 04:43 am:

John, I sent my correct 1911 closed pinion spool to Fun Projects and they converted it to the modern bearing. Extremely nice set up and easy to use. The early Torpedos had the rectangular gas tanks, mine is an April 1911 model and has a round tank. I believe that McLaren wheels are very good/ compatible with accessory brakes including large and small disc Texas T disc brakes.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 07:37 am:

Mike from Iowa - with the 3:1 rear axle gears in your Torpedo, can you ever go into overdrive with the Warford? (That would require a very strong engine, I suppose?)

(Message edited by Roger K on November 12, 2016)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike-Iowa on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 07:59 am:

Hi Roger. I use overdrive routinely on the open road. The engine is rebuilt with a basic T Scat crank, a Chaffin .280 cam, oversize Manley valves, a Prus head, stock exhaust, and a NH straight through carb. I use an E-Timer for ignition. This engine does not have magnets so has oil flappers on the flywheel. It can handle gently rolling hills, no problem. If the car was a heavier model it would be more challenging. That said if you want to use a 3:1 ratio you need a strong engine or a very light car ( all of this is opinion and I respect the viewpoints of others who have been there and done that.)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike-Iowa on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 08:10 am:

Hi Roger. I use overdrive routinely on the open road. The engine is rebuilt with a basic T Scat crank, a Chaffin .280 cam, oversize Manley valves, a Prus head, stock exhaust, and a NH straight through carb. I use an E-Timer for ignition. This engine does not have magnets so has oil flappers on the flywheel. It can handle gently rolling hills, no problem. If the car was a heavier model it would be more challenging. That said if you want to use a 3:1 ratio you need a strong engine or a very light car ( all of this is opinion and I respect the viewpoints of others who have been there and done that.)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Val Soupios on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 09:04 am:

John I have a 12 rivet clam shell in my '12 and a six rivet in my '10. I have never had any trouble with the clam shell but it was a real chore to set up. The six rivet has been a real problem as over the years it has developed radial fractures in the tubes that were difficult to repair. I admit that I did a lot of dirt road driving on roads that were pretty rough so that may have contributed to the problem. I think I would put a truss system on the car if I had one but other than that I would say that the early rears are just fine for driving on todays roads.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan McEachern on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 10:20 am:

To check the housings for straightness, find someone with a lathe large enough to take the housings and spin them. this makes it easy to check the clamshell and the backing plates for runout.

You could use a piece of shafting with some collars turned to fit tightly in the bearing bores and on the shaft and check straightness that way as well.

As far as gearing, my choice would be 11/40.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John T. Tannehill III, Hot Coffee, MS on Saturday, November 12, 2016 - 11:15 pm:

Thanks to all keep it coming. Dan a great idea had not thought of using the lathe. I suppose I can turn some plugs from stock for each end and turn it on center So the next question Dan can I heat shrink it to reduce the .0040 gap if that's a good measurement or what do you suggest? Thanks in advance. John


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan McEachern on Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 01:43 am:

John- yes, heat shrinking the housing is much more controllable than trying to do it in a press, and the best part is you don't need to remove the housing from the lathe.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 05:10 pm:

Whenever steel gets bent (frame, rear axle housings, pretty much anything), sags, or warps, the usual result is stretching of metal in one area, and not another. Pushing back to straight cold, usually accomplishes its goal by stretching an opposing area. The result of the combined stretching is a thin area, which is slightly weaker than the design, and may result in fit issues.
It is often argued that heat should not be used for straightening such things because the red hot area surrounded by material that remains fairly cool CAN result in differential hardness and tempering issues.
There are two valid arguments against that. One, properly heating and shrinking more or less restores the original thickness (strength and thickness more closely resemble the original shape). Two, metal tempering is a newer science than the building of the model T. While some was known about it (being in its earlier stages), and metal parts were often annealed during the manufacturing process, tempering for maximum strength was not part of the model T era design or metallurgy. So, hard and soft areas are already common on most formed metal pieces (actually the largest contributing factor in cracks forming in frames and pans among other parts), and any change you make from heating and bending parts back to straight will likely be minor.
After I have finish straightening to my satisfaction, I often re-heat a larger area to a lesser temperature (maybe between 350 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit maximum) and allow to cool slowly to reduce hardening in the area. You could do that if you are concerned about the heating and shrinking leaving hard spots.

I take every bent part on a case by case appraisal. Sometimes I just bend back cold, sometimes heat and shrink. Often, a bit of both. It gives me more control over getting it back to how it was supposed to be.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John T. Tannehill III, Hot Coffee, MS on Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 10:59 pm:

So Dan and Wayne thanks for the feedback now my question is If i should be heating the side that has the dip/gap and not heating the side that has the rise in it? I think that's how I did a frame about 20 years ago, is that correct


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 11:39 pm:

John T, There are people that can heat an area precisely and control the cooling so that it shrinks the way they want it to. I have never been able to do that reliably, so, although I sort of know how it is done, I won't try to explain it because I would probably just mess you up.
I usually determine which side has stretched (usually, the long side of the bend), then heat a sizable area of stretch material to cherry red. Then carefully press (or leverage depending on the shape and other particulars of the bent part) it back to straight. Two things. One, be set up with the press or leverage before heating (sort of a "duh" comment, no offense intended). Two, this often has to be done in several small stages.
The purpose of heating a fairly small area (only on the stretched side) and pressing it is that the cold area retains most of its rigidity, while the heated area under pressure becomes more plastic (that is actually the right word for it). Under the pressure, it will be held to some shape by the cool side and therefore forced to shrink (in a controlled way) in the heated area.
This may not be the most favored method of straightening things like housing tubes or frame channels. However, it is easily controlled, and has worked well for me many times.
That is my opinion, based upon my experience. Besides, it was also the way I was taught to do it. And although I am always trying to improve my skills? I also do not usually argue with what works well.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan McEachern on Monday, November 14, 2016 - 01:20 am:

I was referring to straightening by heating an area and cooling it rapidly with a wet rag- not heating and pushing/forcing/bending. The rapid cooling causes the area to shrink. Perhaps I misunderstood a question or two. Perhaps an attempt at an example: Housing mounted in lathe (with clamshell toward headstock and you determine the clamshell face (mating surface) is closer to the headstock at a point. Heat an area on the tube in line with the high spot to a dull red (about the size of a quarter) and quench it with a soaking wet rag. This will shrink that area of the tube and pull the high spot away from the headstock. repeat as needed. No pressing needed- just let the metal shrink in that one spot. Repeat as needed until the runout is acceptable. This is a very controllable process. Just FYI- there is not enough carbon in this steel to cause it to harden to any extent in my experience. This won't work if the housing is bent 1/4"- then you WILL have to heat and press it until close. Hope this helps.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Allan Bennett - Australia on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 - 02:00 am:

John, you don't mention accessory brakes on your Torpedo. Without them, your ability to stop will be very severely compromised with the 3:1 ratio rear end. I removed this combination from my speedster before I sold it, to give a T model novice a much more manageable car.

Allan from down under.


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