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Late 40's Traditional '29 Ford Roadster on '32 Rails Update: 3/4/17


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I've been having ideas floating in my head for this roadster project for several months now and I felt like it was time to actually start building it. I've been doing a lot of 50's and 60's styled rods and drag racers so I want to get back to my 40's roots with this one. 

Starting with the new Revell body and frame. I filled in all of the various notches in the frame rails then fitted in the center X and rear cross member from a Revell '40 Ford frame. The engine block & transmission are also from a Revell '40 with home made front brackets. 

The rear axle and spring are from the Revell '48 Ford's. I would like to say I planned it this way but the fact that the rear legs of the center X and rear axle radius rods are on identical angles is purely coincidental. But, it's a very happy accident!

For the front axle set up I'm going to go less conventional and use the dropped front axle and spring from the Revell '40 Ford hot rods. In this arrangement the spring is mounted in front of the axle (Ford started this in 1935 and continued it through 1948) which helps get the whole thing low. One of the drawbacks to doing this is that it shortens the wheelbase by several inches. However, with the somewhat stretched frame (and resulting extra length in front of the cowl) in this new Revell kit the proportions don't get as wonky as it would on a stock '32 frame. There were definitely a handful of documented West Coast cars built back in the 40's with this style of front end but it seems to be largely an East Coast thing.

Wheels are from Revell's '37 Pickup and Panel trucks. Rear tires are from the '29 Roadster kit and front tires are from the Ed Roth Beatnik Bandit. 

Another less conventional move, I'm thinking about using the '34 Pickup grill. There were a few Model A roadster built back in the old days with these grills and they didn't look half bad (or maybe they only looked half good?) Kind of a "poor guys" '32 grill. One of the reasons I'm thinking of using this grill is that due to the fact it leans back it won't appear to be as far forward of the front axle center line as a vertical grill would. It will help shorten the overly long distance from the grill top to cowl top giving much more favorable "hood" proportions, even without a hood. The angle of the grill also compliments the angled body line where the cowl and doors meet, as well as the angle of the windshield.

So, here's a handful of pictures of what I've done so far. Comments welcome!

B)

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Edited by Dennis Lacy
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Great looking build. Really like what you are doing with the chassis. I agree the grill should be lowered and maybe even chopped a little. If you just lower it enough to have the top align with the cowl then the bottom would be to low to the ground. Really like the look of your build.  

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I'm really liking your build.  The frame is perfect and the overall look is just right.  I like the look of the truck grille as well as the wheels.  Gonna be one cool hotrod!!!

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Very nice how the whole concept is coming together.  One suggestion.  The truck grill is very cool but it gives a heavy look to the front end.  Apart from lowering and sectioning it I would cut back the grill surround by about 2 scale inches.  Just a thought.

 

Edited by Taxdude
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Dennis....I will be watching this one closely!   Great discovery on the '48 Ford rear axle and radius rods.....TIM .

 

Thanks, Tim!

Just to be clear, the angle of the '48 radius rods doesn't ordinarily match the angle of the rear "legs" of the '40 X. Only in this case because the angle of the rear "legs" of the X has been altered to fit this frame.

B)

Edited by Dennis Lacy
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Roadster Progress:

Combed through my bin of Flathead hop-up parts and figured out the engine setup. Again, block & front cover from Revell '40 Ford's. Edelbrock heads from Revell '40 Ford's. Intake manifold from AMT '34 5-Window (stock version, which includes some Flathead speed parts.) Pair of carburetors from Revell Ed Roth Tweedy Pie. Crankcase breather scoop from Revell '37 Pickup (which fits perfect into the little firewall recess!) Headers from Revell '48 Coupe. Stock '48 belt drive from Revell '48 Convertible.

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Did the initial setup on the front axle which, along with the spring and tierod, comes from Revell '40 Ford's. Cut off the molded wishbone and replaced with a pair of split wishbones from the new Revell '29 Roadster. Made my own frame mounts. Still need to add shocks and steering. Also fit up Revell '48 Ford brake plates front and rear. 

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Started working on some interior upgrades. I cut the upper rail away from the '29 dashboard then grafted it to a narrowed '37 Pickup dashboard. Not shown (because it wouldn't stay in place) there will also be a '48 column shift with '37 Pickup wheel. The rest of the interior will be out of the '29 box. 

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Here's some new full mock ups. I decided to ditch the '34 Pickup grill (because, lets face it, it really didn't look good) and put on a Revell '32 with the sides notched to bring it down to the correct height. I also got the front wheels fit flush into the tires and widened the inner rear wheels to take up the space in the wide tires.

 8-|

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Edited by Dennis Lacy
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Looking good.

Is it possible to put the axle in front of the spring.

Anything's possible. In this case, it's not what I want. Although this front end arrangement was done in the 40's it wasn't wasn't very common and not a look that most people liked. I wanted to challenge myself to build a good looking car despite it.

B)

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Anything's possible. In this case, it's not what I want. Although this front end arrangement was done in the 40's it wasn't wasn't very common and not a look that most people liked. I wanted to challenge myself to build a good looking car despite it.

B)

I'm sure it will turn out great!!!

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Super work on the X-member and rear crossmember swap. I've seen a few 1:1 cars built exactly this way...also with '34 X-members swapped into A frames for V8 power.

It's tough to get really pleasing proportions with that front end setup, but if anybody can pull it off, I'd bet on you. :D

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Super work on the X-member and rear crossmember swap. I've seen a few 1:1 cars built exactly this way...also with '34 X-members swapped into A frames for V8 power.

It's tough to get really pleasing proportions with that front end setup, but if anybody can pull it off, I'd bet on you. :D

Thanks, Bill! Fitting later center X's to early frames is a timeless practice.

I also appreciate the vote of confidence. The proportions are pretty much what they're gonna be and I'm pleased.

B)

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I'm squinting my eyes and imagining the 3/4 rear view in black and white with a background out of the H.A.M.B. and boy, does this look period perfect. Great start Dennis. :D

Thanks, Glenn!

I haven't seen you comment on my models in a while, I thought maybe I offended you! LOL

B)

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Geez no, Dennis, no offense! Been having some health things going on and just don't usually have a lot of words. Well, except for things that irritate me, so its probably good I haven't said much lol :D Your 27 roadster is stunning!

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