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Traditional Style Hot Rods A general and broad section about "Traditional Style" rods!

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Old 02-23-2018, 12:04 AM
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Hombre Hombre is offline
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Default Model A Traditional Build

This topic doesn't get a lot of play here on the board, so I thought I would like to participate and maybe help it along a little.

Two years ago I started a Model A build, I am a traditional guy and twelve years older than dirt so what other direction would I go? I started this project with a pretty nice running driving "stock" 1931 Model A. I stripped it down to the body and frame and started from there. The body was almost rust free and needed nothing really in the way of repairs. The banger motor and tranny, fenders and assorted stock stuff went up for sale and now rest on a Model A stocker parade car that I sold to a restorer type guy.

Today was a real nice day here in Alabama, temp was in the 70's and I spent a couple of hours just driving around in the country. I have to laugh at how easy this car was to build. Granted I started with a great donor car, but almost all of the stuff I used on this car was stuff that was just laying around the shop. Front end and radius rods steering box was all stuff I traded for years ago and was just setting.

I always planned for this car to be Hemi powered, trouble was I didn't have one of those. I did have a small block setting in the back of the shop that also came in a swap. I new nothing about this engine, not even if it ran. Stuck it in there until I could get a Hemi--Someday--Maybe. That little old small block has always run like a champ, just blind luck Huh?

I also wanted to chop this car. So I cut the roof off of it and chopped it 2", set the roof back on and climbed inside. I am a big man at 6'3" and too much weight, so I chopped car is always a problem for a big guy. Once I climbed in I had a lot of room, so off it came and I chopped it another 2". Climb back in and I still have tons of room. So out comes the saw and another 2 1/2" comes off for a total of 6 1/2" chop, Trouble was every time I got in it I was setting on the floor. Didn't even occur to me what I was going to do for seats. After trying just about every seat known to man I did find a pair of seats from a 1974 Corvette that worked well. Trouble was they are "NOT traditional as they are high backs. I hate that but I would much rather be driving that having it set in the shop seatless and not able to drive it.

It is built for the most part as a traditional car, still needs paint, and still needs that Hemi. I did in time find a 392 early Hemi and I am building it now. It will be a blown motor simple because I always wanted one of those too. Take a look at let me know what you guys think.
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Old 02-23-2018, 03:38 AM
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Great looking car.
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My 29 Essex Build http://ratrodsrule.com/forum/showthread.php?t=34026

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Old 02-23-2018, 07:12 AM
kenny c kenny c is offline
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Great looking rod. As for the seat issue, you could go with a set of bomber seats. I've seen some on ebay from a seller that goes by stitch bitch. I have never seen them in person or used them. But they look nice.
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Old 02-23-2018, 07:20 AM
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Well Hombre......you wanted to know what I think...
I think we need to see more of this, nice build...
have any build pic's?
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Old 02-23-2018, 07:54 AM
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Nice job!
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Old 02-23-2018, 10:59 AM
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Wow, great looking car!

iSore
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Old 02-23-2018, 12:13 PM
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I agree with all of the guys, that is a lovely car. My only complaint is the lack of build pictures. Yep, that is a lovely car.
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Old 02-23-2018, 04:00 PM
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Looks good to me. Will look even better with a blown HEMI.
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Old 02-23-2018, 04:26 PM
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Guys sorry but I just was not smart enough to take pictures during the build. Now with that said I am building the Hemi so how about some pictures of that? OK I will to answer my own question.
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Old 02-23-2018, 04:55 PM
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When I was looking for a Hemi, with I might add not much in the way of prospects. It was just plain funny how it worked out. First I find one not 30 miles away, I was completely prepared to drive as far as 1500 miles if need be. It was a craiglist add and had been posted for over 30 days as it turned out. I go and see the cat who had the engine. Now this was "Supposed" to be a built motor. Story was a guy built it for his 1966 Barracuda and never used it and it had sat for 8 years. I took a bore scope with me so that I could look inside the cylinders. A little tip for you folks, if you use a bore scope get a good one, the one I had was just junk and I could not see a thing down there.

Shined a flash light down the spark plug hole as best I could, and low and behold there is what looks like carbon all over the piston, so it is not a built engine me thinks. The guy was asking a built price, he agreed with me about the carbon and we renegotiated the price understanding I was going to have to build it.

Once I got it home and tore it apart much to my surprise the pistons had no carbon on them at all, I do not have a clue to what we were seeing but it was not carbon. I called the guy up and explained to him and while I did not pay his full asking price I did send him a few hundred more to cover the mistake. And I felt much better about doing that.

The pistons were Jahns and they were brand new, and also 13to1 compression ratio. Well that means to make this thing live on then street I will need new pistons after all.

About a week later I am getting ready to order the pistons, didn't have a mic but I did have a tape measure. Now even a poor old country boy like myself knows that a 392 Hemi is a 4" bore. The pistons are unmarked so I am assuming they are standard Right? Well you know about assuming--- These pistons even using a tape measure are bigger than 4". I take one of them and the block to the machine shop and what do you know this motor is .120 over, that's right guys .120 almost an 1/8th of an inch.

I had the machine shop sonic check the block just knowing that it was going to be junk. This must have been the thickest 392 block ever built as the thinnest cylinder was .232. After checking with a lot of guys who really know Hemi's they all said it was fine, the thinnest block you wanted to try and use is around .180 and still have some safety.

While I am messing with this block I get wind of another 392, it's a drive but I head up there and buy it as well. It is the engine I am building now. Once Hemi's started showing up they just came out of the wood work, I now have four of the things 3 392's and one 354. I guess I am Hemi poor.
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