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Old 06-28-2005, 11:11 PM
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'40 Ford front axel on a T-bucket

Hey guys,
I got a '40 Ford front axel for free to use on my 1927 T bucket I'm building. As you probably know, most t-buckets have the "suicide front end" with the axel mounted in front of the spring, or some have them below the spring. Problem is my my '40 Ford axel is mounted behind the spring.
Now I have 2 options

1) Leave it stock, the factory made it that way for a reason. This means I have to make my frame a bit longer than the usual T-bucket frame so my wheelbase stays the same. But with the axel behind the spring it'll look too goofy. So I thought I'll put the grille shell in front of it to cover it up. Problem with that is that a grille shell in front of the axel (specially this far in front) tends to not look right on a rod.
2) Find a way to mount the spring behind the axel, or above. Here's where another problem begins. I DONT KNOW HOW. I've been told I can just drill holes in my wishbones (another question, should I split or not??) for my perch bolts and then mount the spring onto the bones, right behind the axel. This way I could make it look like a suicide front end, mount the rad and shell behind the axel, get the traditional look etc. Are there any other ways that I could do this?

So in synapsis, should I go stock and goofy looking and try to cover it up, or go suicide style supsension and show it off in front of the frame. AND with either options, should I split my bones or not?



Thanks,


Mike

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Old 06-29-2005, 12:27 AM
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Early ford fronts

Mike,

You will need a set of spring perch bolts that bolt the wishbones to the axle and also provide the spring mounting..

Yup gotta split the bones..we do that to clear the pan on the motor..Not a lotta choices on those..that is why they are just the way they are..That is why the fronts on those early rods look that way...

OMT
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Old 06-29-2005, 09:22 AM
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I know I need the spring perch bolts, they are on the axel already, wishbones are already attached to the axel. These bolts though mount the spring in FRONT of the axel, not behind or above. So could I just get spring perch bolts and put them on the wishbones, then mount the spring to those?



Mike
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Old 06-29-2005, 11:45 AM
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Spring perch bolts

Mike,

I think the ones that you need are speedway # 910-33047 these are a T-shaped affair that provide for attachment of the spring shackles..

We put the spring over the axle on those as it saves a lot in building the front of the frame..makes it simple..The spring front deal requires a lot of noodling to make work and looks like s@%% no matter what you do..

Any way check it out I know that you will..

OMT
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Old 06-29-2005, 12:35 PM
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lots o' prollems

okay, here's the rub with using the 40 ford axle on the front of a t-bucket...

the 40 axle is a ****-eyed sucker to sayed the least.
the distance from between the perch bolt and the king pin is quite narrow so consequently when you split the wishbones, you run into tire clearance and turning radius issues depending on tire size.

if you want to go spring over, the only place to get a spring is posies ($200) and you'll need new perch bolts.

if you want to go spring behind, the speedway perches will not work. the stud is too short to go thru the wishbone. you'll need to make your own out of .750 ID DOM (1.0 OD .125 wall thickness)tubing and a 1/2" or 5/8" bolt that is long enough to hold a full nut plus washers.
now the problem is what length spring do you use???? well, you dont know until you have your wishbones mounted to the frame and your shackles mounted thru the bones, which means you have to know how far out you want your axle and the space between the spring and axle.
then you measure your shackle centers at 90* (or parallel with the ground)to get your eye to eye measurements and hope someone already makes one or get one made at about the same cost as buying a posies.

i just went thru the same thing with my 40 axle.
i traded it for a 28-34.

sometimes free is too expensive.
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Old 06-29-2005, 04:22 PM
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Ouch NOOOOOOOOO, this totally will throw me off. On my tight budget I cant go with a $200 spring guess my looks will have to suffer then. I'll leave it stock with no split bones.








Mike
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Old 06-29-2005, 05:50 PM
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not necessarily.
this hot rodding thing is very trial and error.
do you have your wheels and tires yet?
a t bucket chassis is very narrow so the bones may not split too wide, but you wont know unless you have wheels and tires....people do it all the time, but you'll never know what will work for YOU until you mock some stuff up!
also, to do a spring behind, you MIGHT just find that a standard spring that you can get from ebay for 25 bucks will work...but you wont know unless you experiment. and you can always adjust the positioning of the perch with some clever bracketry and gusseting to compensate any difference to make a standard spring work.
OR you can get an earlier axle and spring for very cheap (like less than 50 bucks) and use the bones, then sell your axle to offset the difference...
or you can just leave the spring in front...

i know where you're at with the budget, but the number one rule of rodding is...make a budget, then double it.
you will ALWAYS find all kinds of neat little expenses to make your life more pleaseant..hot rodding is no different..it will get done...eventually...
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Old 06-29-2005, 08:49 PM
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Dangit free stuff isnt supposed to give me this much trouble! I doubt that I could find a spring and axel for under $75, any specific year I should look for???
I do have the spring that goes on the 40 axel. And I'll hopefully be running a 302, so I was told the oil pan might not hit the bones. They're pretty long and my frame is pretty narrow, so hopefully that'll work.

So, overall plan as off now

Either

1) Find another axel and spring to run a suicide front end
2) Use stock 40 axel and cover it up with rad shell
3) Use 40 axel and mount spring on top, behind, or on the bones.



Mike
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Old 06-30-2005, 01:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightfire
Dangit free stuff isnt supposed to give me this much trouble! I doubt that I could find a spring and axel for under $75, any specific year I should look for???
I do have the spring that goes on the 40 axel. And I'll hopefully be running a 302, so I was told the oil pan might not hit the bones. They're pretty long and my frame is pretty narrow, so hopefully that'll work.

So, overall plan as off now

Either

1) Find another axel and spring to run a suicide front end
2) Use stock 40 axel and cover it up with rad shell
3) Use 40 axel and mount spring on top, behind, or on the bones.


Mike
you can find axles for 25 and springs for cheaper IF you get to the swapmeet early and know your stuff.
look for a 28-34 axle. there are i.d. charts out there and street rodder did an article on i.d.ing ford axles.
i prefer the 32-34 but as soon as you hear '32' people think its made of gold.
get a measurements chart (kingpin and perch centers) and take a tape measure.
maybe someone has a set up to SWAP>>>
i traded my axle off.

you might get away with unsplit bones, but it will limit your ride height, AND you have to make a proper crossmember that has the socket for the ball. on the early fords it was part of the crossmember that the engine and trans bolted into, might have a problem making that work with a late model drivetrain in a shorter car (any idea how much shorter a t bucket is than a forty??). if you want a traditional t bucket they sit kinda 'up' anyway so its cool if you can get way with it but....

i dont like to tell people how to do stuff, but if it was me, i would just split the bones and weld the bungs in. mock the frame and axle and take a gazillion measurements THEN decide which route to take. again, the narrow frame, and you probably wont be running 29 inch front tires, will lessen the chance of interference when splitting bones, BUT the spring is the clincher.
you wont know until you try.

again, i wouldnt do ANYTHING until you have the following:
frame
engine
trans
rear axle
wheels and tires (the same size as you plan on running)

too many mistakes made by being overzealous, and getting ahead of yourself.
unless your building a 'formula' car like a ccr car built with all ccr spec parts, you are going to have to try things two or three times to nail it. these things dont just fall together on the garage floor.

be patient, take your time, ask LOTS of questions, try things to see if they work.

remember, guys have been doing this stuff for years.
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Old 06-30-2005, 01:22 PM
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Thanks a lot altered, you've been a big help. But heres the deal, I need to know if I'll be running the stock axel (split or non split makes no difference for this) or spring on wishbones before I build the frame. If I go stock axel I'll need to build the frame a bit longer to keep the same wheelbase. Good thing is that it'll have a bed behind the tub, so no matter how long or short I build the frame, I can mount the body anywhere I want to and then determine how long the bed will be. I think I'll go for stock axel, build my frame a bit longer, make sure my spring perch goes far enough out, then mount my front and rear axel and see if my bones will clear.



Mike
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Old 06-30-2005, 02:46 PM
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Here's an option....make your own spring perches (1 1/2 x 1 tubing at least 1/8 thickness), that way you can use many different springs. As far as the radius rods hitting the wheels, they may be right, but it seems to me that they wouldn't be all that wide on a T chassis, and you could cut them down a little shorter to get them even closer.
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Old 06-30-2005, 03:02 PM
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Who Sez

Just who says that one has to use a cross spring anyway..something neat could be done with coils..Or maybe even 1/4 elliptics..

Just set back and use the ole thinkin nob..

OMT
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Old 07-01-2005, 12:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneMoreTime
Just set back and use the ole thinkin nob..

OMT
I did and I got an idea.....ready? ok, flip the axel vertically the right side becomes left and vice-versa.....and the spring magically gets transfered to the back!

Will this work? (I need a yes)



Mike
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Old 07-01-2005, 11:46 PM
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Ok

I talked to my uncle today, and we came to the conclusion that I'll leave the axel totally stock with the spring mounted in front. I'll get a different look but thats ok. I might also get by with not splitting the bones. They're fairly long andmy frame is fairly narrow. They'll mount by the tranny crossmember and will clear the engine oil pan just fine, but might hit the tranny pan. In this case I'll either move the mountin cup a bit down or "z" the wishbones. I'll make my spring perch longer up front so my wheelbase will remain the same.



Mike
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