Friday, November 10, 2017

Please take a seat....

When it comes down to is, there really isn't a lot of room in the cab of a Model A.  I needed some seats that were thin and didn't have a bunch of padding but I din't want bomber seats since everyone seemingly uses them.  I had some theater seats that could have worked but I was concerned that they would have been too rat roddy...if that is even a term.

Luckily, I stumbled across a set of Austin Healy Bugeye seats.  They had the adjustable tracks on them and the backs flipped forward for storage purposes.  Believe it or not, they were actually comfortable as well.

They needed to be build up off of the floor a bit, so I had to make some mounts.  This also allowed the driver's seat to clear the battery with sufficient room.  I kept the front of the passenger seat open for storage.

I plan on adding a bit of cushion to the base and a small pad for the back.  I really like these seats.  I did make some templates for future projects in case I needed to make a couple.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Model A Steering Box Redo

One of the many aspects that can make a car not enjoyable to drive is loose steering.  And as you can imagine, the stock steering box on the model A was fairly worn out.  Since I had to modify the box anyway, I figured a complete rebuild was necessary...

I wanted to move the box onto the top off the frame.  Normally, the box is mounted on the inside and the sector sticks through.

After a bit of measuring, some CAD work and several 3d printed prototypes, I finally settled on a mount the I liked.

The mount clamps onto the the steering box so the original mounting flange ad to be machined off.  While I had thee part in the lathe, it was a good time to do the needle roller bearing upgrade.

After several test fits, there was a bit of trimming required...

Also, I felt that the column was too long, so, 1-1/2" had to come off.

After everything was reassembled, I made the top clamp and bolted it up.  The pitman arm needed a bit of "tweeking" to clear but other than that, it worked great.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Torque tube shortening....

I have had a rash of torque tubes and drive shafts to shorten lately.

The torque tubes are fairly straight forward.  Simply remove the section you don't need with a parting tool, and weld it back together.

The drive shaft is a bit more involved.  Luckily, Ford used a straight sided spline although, it isn't quite to an SAE standard.  Because it isn't an in-volute profile, the spline can be made with a standard endmill.

First, I have to turn the part I am cutting off down so that it can fit in the indexer.  Ideally, I need a larger indexer and this wouldn't be necessary.  However, one advantage is that the shafts are rough turned from the factory and the bearing journals are not necessary concentric with the rest of the shaft.  So by doing it this way, I can indicate the bearing journals in and ensure the splines are concentric.

The spline starts by offsetting one direction and cutting one side of the spline...

Then offsetting the other direction and cutting the other side...

Finally, using a smaller endmill, the root of the spline can be cleaned up...

After adding the pin hole for the coupler, it's ready to be installed.

Back at it....

Finally I am starting to catch back up. There have been many late nights machining trying to get adapters made and orders filled.  

I appreciate all that have been patient will me while we get this sorted out.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Things are looking up...

Well, after a month and a half, I finally feel like I can work in the shop again.

To make a long story short,  I had a blood clot from my hip to below my knee.  The Dr's referred to this as a DVT...deep vein thrombosis. 

I woke up one morning to find my leg twice the size of my other leg and a concerning shade of purple.  Knowing that this was not normal, I went to the ER where they immediately put me on blood thinners.  I ended up being there for a week.

I eventually had to undergo 2 seperate procedures to try and open the clot up.  The Dr's finally had to put several stints in to keep everything flowing and now, I am starting to feel somewhat normal.

I have never experienced anything this painful. During the first several weeks,  I couldn't walk do to the pain. What a miserable experience and I hope that I do not have any chronic issues from this though I probably will have to be on blood thinners and wear compression stockings for quite some time.

So, stay tuned as I promise there will be updates coming soon.

Friday, May 26, 2017


Things have beem going slow lately here at the shop.  I've actually been in the hospital since the 20th.

I woke up last Saturday morning ready for a full days work only the find excruciating pain in my leg as well as it swelled to double it's normal since.  I get to the ER and find out that I had a pretty large blood clot in my vein.

Long story short, I am going to be fine but its going to be a tough painful road to recovery.

Luckily, I have plenty of adapters in stock and a nice place to sit by the cnc.

Friday, March 24, 2017

There are still good people out there....

With the wild fires that are currently burning in the Oklahoma and Kansas area, there is an estimated 750,000 acres of grass land that has burnt.   Theses fires have tradigically claimed the lives of 4 people and caused an extraordinary amount of damage.

Ranchers depended on a good majority of this acreage for grazing pastures for their cattle, and now, there is nothing.

A group of local farmers have banded together to donate and deliver hay to those that need it so desperately.

In total, a caravan of 36 trucks headed out west. What a sight....