Final Assembly



Click on any photo to enlarge, then use your "Back" button to get back to this page

We are now ready for final assembly.  This shows the final mounting of the body on the frame and installation of all the peripheral components.  This is the fun part.  I think I see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Final02a.JPG (119748 bytes)

I had a couple of friends come over to do the final mounting of the body, because it is difficult with the crazy turnbuckle arrangement to support the rear fenders.



Final03.JPG (274062 bytes)

This shows the turnbuckle and rods I've been talking about.  Originally, the holes on the two sides were misaligned by about an inch and a half.  Fortunately, I discovered this early on and fixed it.



Final04.JPG (274083 bytes)

This is a close up of the turnbuckle.  Originally, it was supported only by sheet metal and the holes were naturally surrounded by stress cracks.  I added the L-shaped brackets that are attached to the back side of the frame.  These are 11 gauge steel with gussets for added strength.


Final06.JPG (150388 bytes)

 Wow, this is starting to get exciting!



Final07.JPG (149214 bytes)

The trunk lid and steering column are installed and I'm in the process of installing the windshield, step plates, radiator, radiator shell and hood



Final08.JPG (148181 bytes)

  The hood doesn't fit quite right, will have to work on that.




HoodFit5.JPG (269107 bytes)

I must have spent 2 weeks fighting the hood alignment. Finally, with Fred's help, we brazed on two additional support brackets, which allowed me to get a decent alignment.  Now to do a final install of the welt.



HoodFit6.JPG (271530 bytes)

This alignment ain't too bad, and the high dollar rechrome of the shell looks pretty good too.




Emblem1.JPG (261001 bytes)

I had planned to make up an emblem using the ABC logo, but finally decided that since the car has been "Baby" for 87 years, I would keep this emblem that was originally on the car.



Final14.jpg (153976 bytes)

It now doesn't look half bad. It still needs some additional buffing on the finish, then wiring and some additional plumbing.  The headlights are not yet mounted either.



Final15.jpg (175324 bytes)

In this view you can see the bracket I made for the tail and stop light and the license plate. These were original attached to the fender apron, causing stress cracks, now it is attached to the frame extension (see Chassis Restoration).  The rear turn lights are yet to be mounted.


GaugeCombo.jpg (121834 bytes)To get a more authentic look using the ABC logo, I made these gauge faces in a graphics program. They were printed by a local sign company.  For the fuel pressure gauge I couldn't find a new low pressure gauge with the right look, so used this oil pressure gauge off an old Dodge.  The car originally had a remote radiator filler, so it had to have a temperature gauge.  This face was patterned after one on an old International Harvester gauge.


Dash01.JPG (139614 bytes)Here is the dash ready for installation.  The speedometer comes from a 1928 Pontiac and was probably used on other GM cars of the era.  It runs off the drive for an accessory Model T AC speedometer. 



Dash02.JPG (258851 bytes)Final test fit of the dash.  My days of lying on my back to work on under dash wiring are over, so I  set this up so it could be unfastened by removing about 6 screws, allowing access to the wiring on the back.  The mixture of brass together with chrome (or nickel) results because the 1923 body was originally mounted on a 1914 chassis.


Final22.jpg (180683 bytes)

These photos were taken just before the "Maiden Voyage" to the Speedster Reunion in Lincoln, NE, June 15-18, 2011. Note spare tire carrier which was fabricated.



Final23.jpg (194732 bytes)

The period air pump to pressurize the fuel tank is installed here.  This gas tiank is high enough it is not normally needed, except for maybe a steep hill with a low tank



Final24.jpg (192437 bytes)

I was rewarded for my efforts on this car with the 2011 Speedster of the Year Award from the Speedster and Racer Hall of Fame



I still have a long list of improvements to make, like the construction of a top, but it now runs and drives.  I had several friends involved with trying to get it to run well.  We blamed the Winfield carb a lot, but it turns out our problems were part due to ignition (Yeah, we've all heard the saying) and valves that like to go out of adjustment.  It now drives quite well.  It made about 50 hp at 3,000 rpm on a chassis dyno at the speedster reunion.  That's about three times the power of a stock Model T.  It ain't like driving a normal Model T.