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Old 01-05-2005, 01:28 PM
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T-bucket frame questions

Hello,
can anyone tell me how long a usual t-bucket frame is. If possible I'd also like the measure of the width of the frame from outher rail to outer rail.
If anyone knows how long a t-bucket body is (without turtle deck or pickup bed) and how far back it mounts on the frame (distance from front of frame to where the body begins to mount).

One last question while I'm at it, how easy is it to attach a straight axel of a Chevy Van or Truck to either an S10 frame or a LUV frame?



Thanks so much


Mike

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Old 01-05-2005, 01:58 PM
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T- bucket

Contact Speedway Motors in Lincoln, Neb. as they specialize in building all stages of frames for T's from 1915-1927.

speedwaymotors.com is the web link.
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Old 01-05-2005, 02:05 PM
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Thanks, will check out their website. Do you know if they're frames are the same length as the original Ford ones?



Mike
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Old 01-05-2005, 02:20 PM
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T-buckets

To the best of my knowledge, the are built to origional length and widths etc. They have both stock type and Z-ed frames. The big difference is, they are made with box tubing instead of C channel.
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Old 01-05-2005, 03:41 PM
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www.wescotsauto.com
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Old 01-05-2005, 05:41 PM
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Ok thanks guys.

Hey Bob the link doesnt seem to work for me





Mike

EDIT:

I figured out the right website and downloaded their frame specs which can be viewed at here http://www.wescottsauto.com/pdf2/FR-1.pdf
I'll take a while to show up. Thanks a lot BOBCRMAN

Looks like the overall length is 101.5 inches and width I cant tell from the graph, can anyone find it??

Also does anyone know how hard it would be to mount the front straight axel of an older Chevy truck to a modern mini-truck chasis? Like an S10 or a Chevy LUV? I know the old steering and suspension would have to go and a spring perch would have to welded on.






Mike

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Old 01-05-2005, 07:11 PM
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T-bucket

The best figures I can come up with are firewall width, which would be the outside measurement of the frame at that point.

23-25 T = 26 1/2"
26-27 ^ = 29"
Those are a pretty straight railed frame. I think that measurement should be the same front to rear.
At any rate, you couldnt go wrong by building your frame with parallel rails.
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Old 01-05-2005, 07:23 PM
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Thanks

I'm not building a frame, I'm just looking to get the measurements so I can see if a S10 chasis would be narrow enough and long enough. Or any other minitruck that's small enough will do. Then I'll look for a straight axel of an old chevy van and see if I can make it fit. Keep leafs in the back but mount the axel over the leafs not under. Even take a leaf out.
Basically whatever is narrower than 29 inches should do. I'd rather have it narrower than wider.
Thanks a lot,




Mike
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Old 01-05-2005, 07:28 PM
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YW

YW

Way back when, guys used to put T bodies on A and B chassis for dirt track racing, even though the frames were wider.

You might also consider using a front axle out of an early 60's Econoline Ford van as well.
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Old 01-06-2005, 03:06 PM
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Sorry for the dumb question, but what does YW stand for?

Lets say I were to find a frame that would suit my needs, 101 inches long and 26 inch width. If I were to go to a junkyard and find a straight axel out of a Econoline, that one would be mounted with 2 parralel leafs though right? But if I wanted the look of a T, I'd have to mount a spring across my frame with a spring perch and attach it so that the axel would be centered. Would this give me any bump steer or would I have to add 4 bars to make it ride nice. Also do you need shock or can you just ride on the horizontal mounted spring?
I've heard people talking about using an axel of an econoline and "reverse" or "flip" it. What does this mean??




Thanks,


Mike
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Old 01-06-2005, 05:37 PM
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T-bucket

The best way to go, short of going with coil overs, is to mount coil spring buckets on the front of your T frame, use coils for the front axle, with either a 4 link set up or, Wishbones, a panard bar, and a cross link steering from the steering box to a tiller arm on the rt spindle. Going with cross link steering does a lot to eliminate bump steer, and the 4 link is the better link setup over wishbones, however, wishbones are a more traditional setup.
Mounting the axle in front of the frame perch is probably the better setup, which will allow you to mount your spring buckets in parallel with the front crossmember rather than above or behind it. Going this route will also allow you to drop your front end lower with out having to use a dropped axle or Z the front end of the frame. Mounting the axle to coil springs would be a simple matter of fabricating a pad to bolt to the existing parallel leaf locations on the axle, with them mounted behind the axle. You could run your shocks up inside the springs, making a fairly neat package out of it.

The panard bar could be mounted between the sring buckets on the frame and axle, reducing the angularity between the two mounting points, from front to rear.
This would also give you about 2 inches more wheel base, in effect moving more weight to the rear.
Other benefits are that you would have a completely open engine bay, with out anything going under the front of your engine.
You could mount your radiator either on top of or behind the front crossmember as well, without any incumberances.
The spring buckets on the frame would also make good perches for your headlites.

Last edited by Max Keith; 01-06-2005 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 01-06-2005, 07:09 PM
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Max Keith, again thanks for the info. Really helpfull.

I do have some more questions though, as you can tell I'm a total beginner so some of the terms I'm not to sure what they mean.

Now, I'm like the traditional look on rods and therefor I wouldnt like to have shocks in the front. I'd kinda want it to look like this



From what I can tell the spring perch is attached to the frame, and holds a vertical leaf spring that attaches to the axel. There's hairpin rods (or whatever the 2 rods are called that go to the axel and attach to one pivot point on the frame)

From what I can tell there are no shocks. I'd rather not use shocks since they are $$$. If I actually begin this project it will be a VERY low buck build.

Same with this one




Now I'm not gonna buy a T-bucket frame or make one. The point is to find a very cheap pickup truck perferably with a V8. I hope the truck will have a straight front axel already. Then I'll have to convert from parralel leaf springs to one vertical to get "the look". Also to lower it in the front, cant I just weld the spring perch a considerabel amount higher than the frame? I'd keep the rear leafs and mount the axel over the leafs (not under) and dearch the springs a bit.
The last thing would be to add some radius rods or hairpins to eliminate bumpsteer.

Would that be safe? I'd have to adjust the ackerman angle of course and get the camber right.

sorry for the newb questions,



Mike
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Old 01-06-2005, 07:32 PM
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T-bucket

Personally I dont think that you will find a pickup truck with a straight axle under it, at least not anything in production since the early 60's, and if you find one in good enough condition to do that kind of work on, you are better off to just get a bare aftermarket frame, a lot cheaper, and go from there.
As for shocks, they are on there. It appears that what they have are the old friction type shocks, rather than modern hydraulics.
Trust me, you dont want to ride around in a vehicle that doesnt have shocks on it. You will either be beaten to death by the ride, or you could suddenly find yourself involuntarily exited from the vehicle, TOTALLY without your consent.
Having a vehicle without shocks,especially on the street is a disaster looking for a place to happen.
If you check the Speedway Motors web site, you will find fabricated chassis in about any state of construction you desire.

Taking a pickup frame, most likely having to narrow it a bunch, then to modify the front and rear suspension to go along with the narrowed frame, is a long and tedious, as well as expensive proprosition.

If you were to find a pickup with an I-beam front axle under it, you would probably be better off building and customizing it, rather than chopping up the frame.

You can get a good boxed frame for your T-bucket buildup from Speedway for about $600. You will pay probably more than that just to get an old truck to tear down and chop up.

Go to their web site and check out what they have, even better go to the web site and order one of their street catalogues.
Only about $5 and then you have a good and reletively reasonable priced place to get your other parts you will need for your beast.

You can get a complete frame with Transverse leaf front end, with the hairpin links etc for about $1500.

Since this would be considered a new construction vehicle, you will probably have to have it inspected before you can get a title and plates for it.

Contact your local RCMP, or Province Police, about construction codes. Explain to them what you are up to, and you need to know what is required to make the vehicle legal for street use.

The codes will tell you such things as the minimum and maximum distance off the road bed your headlights must be, taillights, turnsignals, Fenders (most places require them on new construction vehicles), bumper heights and requirements.

The codes will even tell you what the minimum turning radius of the vehicle must be.

There are other issues like windshield wipers, possibly defrosters, whether the vehicle, as a roadster has to have functional doors.

There are a lot of issues and requirements that have to be met when building a vehicle in this manner.

I dont mean to throw cold water on your endeavor. I wholeheartedly support your venture. I would just hate to see you put a bunch of money and time into a vehicle, only to be told you cant run it one th street.
That would be heartbreaking.
One other thing, do you have someone with a lot of automotive experience to help you with this project? Without some guidence, you could get in a jam real quick.

Im wanting to build a T-roadster, myself, someday. All it takes is $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$4.

Ive got experience fabricating stock car chassis and have been messing with cars for 40+ yrs. Building a basic frame is one of the few things I wont tackle.

Last edited by Max Keith; 01-06-2005 at 07:31 PM.
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Old 01-06-2005, 07:57 PM
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Allright, thanks for the explanation.

I'm pretty sure I'm not allowed to run the car fenderless in my province. Here are some of the rules I have to follow

http://www.msra.mb.ca/html/mb_regs.html


They're pretty strict, so rodding here aint easy.

I did check out all the packages from both Speedway and Total Performance and they're all too much $$$. The mission is to only build the whole rod for about 2.5K.

Since I just found out I need fenders I dont really need to have the traditional style setup in the front. I dont even have to go with an I-beam axel since that will be covered with fenders right.

So I could get any 1/2 ton Ford or Chevy Truck with a V8, strip the cab and bed and everything. Then mount the T body on it and the fenders will cover the shock towers. For the bed just make one out of wood.

This might all be impossible but I'd REALLY like to build a rod for under 2.5K. And yes I do have one person with good mechanical background that could help me.

Thanks,


Mike
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Old 01-06-2005, 08:04 PM
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Here's mine, built at home in the garage, no outside help. Used 1 1/2"X 3" tubing for frame. Not hard if you know how to weld. Speedway frontend. SBF with toploader and 4:11 8" rearend.
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