Hi again everyone,
After getting some low compression readings and being told I should run the engine on my 27 chassis, I quickly sent out the carb to get rebuilt and drained the oil and replaced it. I received the carb, but then the temperature dropped to the negatives for the week or two after, and the barn the T is in is not insulated at all, haha, so pretty cold!
Its starting to warm up a little more, so I think Im going to try and start it one of these days.
I am wondering how I should set it up for a test. I have an ignition switch if it helps. So right now theres the four wires from the coil box to the timer, thats what Ive got done. And next, obviously, the plug wires. But where should I go from there? I am not interested in installing a battery just yet, just gonna test it on mag. Just attach the mag wire to that mag terminal on the coil box and im good to start it?
I would hook up a 6 volt battery and turn the engine over looking for coil buzz from each cylinder before adding fuel. This would give you a better chance of the ignition firing the plugs rather than cranking and cranking without knowing why it isn't starting. Unless everything is really good, it's hard to start most T's on mag under the best of conditions.
You don't say if the engine is in the car or not. Make sure you have the timing retarded for starting or you may get hurt.
Ford didn't supply batteries before 1919, but the coil box had a battery post for a reason. If the magneto is in great shape the car will start on MAG. If it isn't, you'll want to fire the coils with a battery.
yes, its just an engine mounted to a chassis, no body. Dont worry about that, Ill be reading up and doing everything carefully to start it!
So pretty much, try on mag (Previous seller said it started on mag a few years ago), if nothing, try a battery.
Does the above image look like what I should do however? Just attach the spark wires, and mount to mag wire to the terminal and its all set up for starting on mag?
Just my 2 cents:*
-Have you checked/confirmed your spark timing? Yes, the timing is variable but it's good to have the end limit verified, the consequences of skipping this step include a broken arm. It's very easy to check, BTW, shouldn't take more than a few minutes.
-Your 1927 chassis probably has a 1927 engine in it. That engine would have come with a generator installed, which can be damaged by running without a load. I believe there is some method of jumper-this-to-that but I have no idea what it is.
-The slower a magneto turns, the weaker its output. Since the actual condition is kind of an unknown right now, I think you should very seriously consider using a battery for the first start. This way if it won't start you at least know the answer isn't weak spark. People have successfully used all sorts of batteries in their Ts; 6V, 8V, 12V, tractor batteries, Power Wheels batteries, it turns out the system isn't that picky. If you don't want to shell out for a brand new 6V battery just yet, grab any reasonably charged car battery and hook it up (remember negative ground).
-If you're going to use a battery and are not using a Ford ignition switch I would probably not even run the wire to the mag post. Accidental battery power to that post can demagnetize your magneto.
That should be enough to get your electrical system sorted enough for test runs.
*in Canada we eliminated the penny a couple years ago so the value of my opinion rounds down to exactly nothing.
To avoid ruining your generator ( if is actually installed) just take a piece of wire and connect it from the output terminal of the gen and tie it to ground (the cutout mounting screw will suffice here) Not doing this, the gen will run away without a load and burn itself up.
This is due to residual magnetism in the field which will get the gen started, and then on to self destruction. If the magnetism is weak, this will not happen, but why take the chance.
I will check the timing, I'll look into how after I post this.
Yes, 1927 engine with generator. If anyone here knows how to jump it to something so it's safe to use would be very helpful.
I am going to try mag first and hand cranking, and will try a battery if it fails!
I found two (well one, one is missing) terminals on the bottom of the coil box. Does it matter what one I connect the mag wire to? I would assume it doesn't...
Thanks Willard! Didn't see that until after I posted
I'm with Tim on this one.
Forget the mag and run it with a battery - especially if your going to start it with the crank.
Disconnecting the mag post wire is the safest way to protect your mag.
Also by pass the switch and connect a 12 volt battery directly to the coil box.
You don't need heavy wires! Just make sure you can pull a wire to shut it off :-)
The Model T was positive ground but polarity makes no difference if you by pass everything except the coil box.
Since the engine is in the vehicle make sure the transmission is in neutral, jack up a rear wheel, block a front wheel, and release the handbrake.
The hanging wheel will spin but it will be easier to start because there will be less drag in the transmission.
Alright alright Fred, you convinced me! hahaha.
So set up everything as in the photo,but connect the battery wire INSTEAD of the mag wire, leave the mag disconnected. And bypass the generator too.
Ill just hook up the battery with clips, that will make it easy to shut it off.
Oh wow, youre in NH too. Once Im finished with this speedster Ill join the NH club and take a tour
Ill get some more work done and update when it gets a little bit warmer, its very cold here and I cant do anything with gloves on!
John - Can't help but question your reasoning when you say,...."Once I'm finished with this speedster I'll join the NH club and take a tour."
Why not join the club NOW and reap all the benefits while you're "finishing the speedster!"
At best, you'll immediately begin making friends and develop a ready source of help, information and advice when needed and at worst (altho' it's nothing but GOOD) you'll make some very good friends within the wonderful Model T Ford community!
For what it's worth,.....harold
Fred Dimock - Not really all that important, but I think you may have experienced a "typo" in your post of 01:59pm....
You said "Model T was positive ground...."
Actually, as built in the factory, Model A"s were positive ground, but Model T's were always negative ground,....FWIW,....harold
Here's how the timer wiring goes:
And here's how to set timing:
Steve's coil box image is correct for firewall-mounted coils but needs to be flipped left to right if you have the stock engine-mounted coil box on your '27. What's most important is that the cylinder numbers on the timing cover are followed (note that they follow the firing order of 1-2-4-3) and that you know the cylinders of the engine are numbered 1-4 starting at the FRONT of the block.
Perfect, thank you Steve! My wires were replaced at some point and I have like white, blue, red and green but in a different order. I'll take a look when I can.
Ok, read through that link. Once again, sorry everyone and thank you for helping out a newbie.
I understand it all except for the part with switching to BAT with a switch. So I would start out doing all the steps with the battery DISCONNECTED, and then instead of switching to BAT (Since theres no switch), simply connect the battery?
As for the battery, connecting it, I connect the NEGATIVE part of the battery to the GROUND (Gonna clip to frame). The POSITIVE gets connected the the bottom terminal of the coil box, and it does not matter what of the two terminals I use. Is this correct?
Please take a picture or two of how you have everything set up on your chassis and post it here. I assume you have the coil box mounted on the engine ...
I dont have any photos right now and it is dark out.
Heres a short description of how it will be set up when I have time.
Coil box bolted to engine. Wires on top row of terminals connect to timer. Bottom terminals connect to spark plugs. Bottom terminal on coil box will attach to positive terminal of battery, negative to frame. Generator grounded to frame.
If you don't have the generator connected to the battery be sure to ground the generator output so you don't fry the generator.
Oops, knew I was forgetting something!
Yes, I know if I don't want to use the generator to ground, but what about for this quick test for connecting it to the battery? Do I attach the generator wire to the negative grounded terminal or the positive?
Here's how it goes when you get it all together.
If you follow the lines you see that the generator goes to the battery +.
If I may.
John, for easy testing purposes, I'd connect the generator output to a generator cover screw with a small wire.
Something like this.
Finally had time to do a little work today. Mounted the steering column for testing the levers with timing and such, mounted the firewall for some more stability, and checked all the timing wire connections.
Tim, following what you said that means 4 in the image Steve posted would be the farthest from the front, correct? 4 would be closest to cylinder 4 for the late coil box I have? That's how the wires are set up.
Right now it is constantly below freezing. Do I really need the radiator for a 5 or 10 minute run? What about the fan?