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Thread: Tommy R's Hot Rod Build (1:1)

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Old 12-28-2010, 12:55 PM   #1
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Default Tommy R's Hot Rod Build (1:1)

I've run into several of you who are also on the H.A.M.B. (a vintage/traditional hot rod forum) so I thought there might be some interest here in a project I'm working on. In May of '10 I decided it was finally the right time to pursue a dream I've had since I was a kid in the '70s. I've always wanted a hot rod and this was the time to make it a reality. The car in question is a 1930 Ford Model A coupe.

If you want to follow along with all the nitty gritty details of the build, go to the link below.
http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/s...d.php?t=482087

I don't like street rods and billet like Boyd and Foose make. Not my thing. I'm not a fan of rat rods, either. What I like are traditional style hot rods. So that's what I'm going to build. Here is an inspirational photo to show something like what I want, it's owned by a buddy of mine.


Over the next year or two I'll get it finished. I've done quite a bit of fab work in the garage, but have never built an entire car before. Should be an interesting learning experience to say the least. Here's what I've got so far...

What I started with: body with fenders, doors, and reproduction '32 framerails. Everything else is orig. Henry Ford steel.


Goofing off one night we mocked it up.


Donor front axle assembly from a '40 Ford. All of this will be used, but the axle itself, which I sold.


Wheels! 16x4 fronts and 16x4.5 rears. Pro Street this ain't!!


Sourced an axle. It's from a '66 Bronco and has 4.11 gears. I have a second center chunk with a Trac-Lok diff which I'll rebuild for it.


An orig. Model A axle that's been dropped 4".


Rear suspension. A "drag duty" ladder bar setup from Pete and Jake's. I opted for the heavier duty version because I plan on launching this car hard at the strip on slicks from time to time.


Flatheads are great, but make NO power. Hemis are bitchin', but cost a fortune to be powerful and reliable. I also want to roadtrip this car so I want common parts for it in case I break down out of town. So what better choice for easy, cheap, reliable horsepower than a small block Chevy? This is a '73 350 truck short block with '67-'69 "camel hump" heads that came from a friend's running '71 Firebird. Should make a good starting point.


The chassis now on my frame table. It's all squared up, true, level, and tacked in place. I need to add a bit more bracing to it before I weld in the front and rear crossmembers and box the frame rails for strength.


So that's where I sit as of now. Stay tuned if you're interested to see how this fiasco turns out!
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:10 PM   #2
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glad to see ya finally posting this up. gimme a shout if ya need a extra pair of hands.
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:14 PM   #3
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glad to see ya finally posting this up. gimme a shout if ya need a extra pair of hands.
Well, actually I'm planning on this Sunday (1/2) and next Sunday (1/9) as designated "hot rod work days" so if you're interested in coming by, hit me up! More help is always appreciated for sure.
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:25 PM   #4
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Subscribed!

My father-in-law has two 1930 Model A Fords. A fully restored Coupe and a project convertible.

Looking forward to watching this come to life
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Old 12-28-2010, 02:07 PM   #5
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Subscribed!

My father-in-law has two 1930 Model A Fords. A fully restored Coupe and a project convertible.

Looking forward to watching this come to life
Very cool! If he has any spare body related parts to sell, let me know. As you can see, I need a lot of pieces and hardware. You may or may not want to tell him it's for a hot rod build, though. It seems lots of restorers hate hot rodder!
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:17 PM   #6
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Looks like you've got enough to work with there. As much as I'd like to see (and hear) a flattie in it, the SBC makes too much sense to pass up. And there's lots of period-correct goodies you can bolt on to make it look right. Finned Edelbrock valve covers and 3 97's would be a good start.
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:23 PM   #7
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nice project man. nothing better than being built ford tuff with chevy stuff
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:33 PM   #8
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Looks like you've got enough to work with there. As much as I'd like to see (and hear) a flattie in it, the SBC makes too much sense to pass up. And there's lots of period-correct goodies you can bolt on to make it look right. Finned Edelbrock valve covers and 3 97's would be a good start.
You read my mind, Stu. A flattie just sounds "right" in a hot rod and the look is hard to beat. If money were no object, I'd put a built 392 Hemi in it, but it's just not in the budget. I eventually want 450-500 reliable horsepower and a Hemi would put me in the poor house. And the poor flattie simply couldn't deliver! I'm a firm believer that hot rods needs to be fast.

Initially, I'll get it running with a single 4 bbl, but three deuces are the eventual goal.

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nice project man. nothing better than being built ford tuff with chevy stuff
Thanks! I had a near exact duplicate of this motor in an old racecar of mine and it made decent power (~380). If this one puts down just 250-300 hp at the wheels it should be plenty for the time being. The car is only going to weigh about 2200 lbs. when it's built. Nice power to weight ratio, but it'll be hell trying to plant power through tiny tires. Fun, though!!
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:38 PM   #9
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im thinkin some old school Coker white walls would be damn good lookin
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:40 PM   #10
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im thinkin some old school Coker white walls would be damn good lookin
For Christmas, my g/f and family gave me gift certificates to Coker! I've got the rear tire picked out (7.50-16), but am still deciding on the front (6.00 or 5.50). I'm not yet ruling out wide whites, but I'm going for more of an early '50s build and white walls may not suit it so well. But we'll see.
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Old 12-28-2010, 05:59 PM   #11
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subscribed! one day i hope to build a hot rod...
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:36 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Tommy R View Post
For Christmas, my g/f and family gave me gift certificates to Coker! I've got the rear tire picked out (7.50-16), but am still deciding on the front (6.00 or 5.50). I'm not yet ruling out wide whites, but I'm going for more of an early '50s build and white walls may not suit it so well. But we'll see.
right on, sounds like a good girl, you may be right even just a good ol set of coker would really give it the nostalgic look. do they still reproduce the old...poly-glass tires( not sure if that makes ssense to ya but i believe thats what they are called)
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:49 PM   #13
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i like where this is headed!
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Tommy R View Post
Very cool! If he has any spare body related parts to sell, let me know. As you can see, I need a lot of pieces and hardware. You may or may not want to tell him it's for a hot rod build, though. It seems lots of restorers hate hot rodder!
Nah he likes them all, especially when they're done well

He's the President of the Model A Ford Club White Mountain Chapter here in NH...I'll talk with him this week. A lot of the guys in the club bring him parts on a regular basis.
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Old 12-28-2010, 08:05 PM   #15
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its a beauty
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Old 12-28-2010, 09:14 PM   #16
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That's going to turn out great. It's your car and I know sbc parts are cheaper and easier to find but a Ford 302 or 347 that's stroked is what I would put in it.
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Old 12-28-2010, 10:48 PM   #17
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Thanks for the compliments, fellas!

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Originally Posted by boosted4lyf View Post
right on, sounds like a good girl, you may be right even just a good ol set of coker would really give it the nostalgic look. do they still reproduce the old...poly-glass tires( not sure if that makes ssense to ya but i believe thats what they are called)
Yeah, the tires can make or break a car, especially when we're talking a car with no fenders. To look right, this car needs to be on bias plies just like in the first pic I posted at the top. I'll have the same rear tires, but not the same fronts.

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Originally Posted by CreepyCrawl View Post
Nah he likes them all, especially when they're done well

He's the President of the Model A Ford Club White Mountain Chapter here in NH...I'll talk with him this week. A lot of the guys in the club bring him parts on a regular basis.
Sweet, man! Thanks a lot and definitely keep me in the loop.

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That's going to turn out great. It's your car and I know sbc parts are cheaper and easier to find but a Ford 302 or 347 that's stroked is what I would put in it.
Oh man, I thought looooong and hard about putting a SBF in it! Did a ton of research and was even committed to it at one point. But a few things steered me away from it and back to a SBC.
- The SBF will ultimately end up being longer than the SBC which would hurt the proportions of the car. A Model A on Deuce rails only has so much engine room to work with.
- I'd likely end up with an HO motor that would need a carb conversion and there are more concerns with getting a cam that has a lobe to run a mechanical fuel pump. And more hassle with the timing cover, water pump, etc. to get it short enough length-wise.
- Power and go-fast parts are marginally more expensive than the SBC.
- The appearance just doesn't look right. Tough to describe, but the SBF cars I've seen just miss the mark for some inexplicable reason. I think it's because the SBF isn't as period correct or maybe it's because the dizzy is in the front of the Ford? I dunno.

So that's the abbreviated version of why I opted for the Chevy powerplant.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:13 PM   #18
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My uncle puts sbc's in nearly all of his A's & T's. Mainly because he's got a bunch of them on hand, but the other reason is like you stated, price and parts availability.

My favorites so far of his...

'30 4 door...



the '27...



and the '28 5 window...its actually on a S-10 frame...

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Old 12-29-2010, 08:29 PM   #19
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I speak HAMB too.on there as the same name here. i'm doing full frame-offs on a 62 impala traditional lowrider and a 70 drop top beetle getting 4bbl'ed corvair power.
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Old 12-29-2010, 09:57 PM   #20
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I speak HAMB too.on there as the same name here. i'm doing full frame-offs on a 62 impala traditional lowrider and a 70 drop top beetle getting 4bbl'ed corvair power.
got any links to them?
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