I was looking at the stainless grille insert on the ’32 the other day, and noticed particularly the two horizontal strips that keep the vertical bars aligned. I wondered what radical transformation the car would undergo (and ultimately how much more horsepower I could squeeze) if those horizontal bars were black, to blend in with the radiator.
Here’s the product of my wonder:
It was a bit of a trick to mask the vertical bars, but I think it came out exactly as I planned: black.
This is another idea born from necessity… we hadn’t decided/bought a license plate frame or holder, so the idea began to be tossed around. On a roadster, plate positioning is a bit easier because the section below the trunk lid is taller; most plates get mounted there. But since there really isn’t enough height there on a 3 window, we decided to put it somewhere else. Here’s what we came up with.
Masking tape makes it easy to mark dimensions with a pen.
This is the little fixture I came up with to draw a line parallel with the tube. I have the spreader bar clamped to my bench, nestled up against a section of 1.5″ x 1.5″ tubing which is just hanging over the edge of the bench. I used a square and set the ruler so that the mark on the tube (which I made while the spreader bar was still on the car) was at an inch line. Doesn’t matter what number. I could then move the square along the tube and make marks at the number, then connect the dots. Voila! (That’s french for “eh!”)
Here’s a picture of my setup.
I used a cutoff disc to slot the spreader bar.
I cut the bottom off a Bob Drake stainless license plate frame…
…and tig welded it to the stainless spreader bar.
You can see where this is going…
I sectioned the piece that I cut off the bottom of the Bob Drake frame, and welded it to the spreader bar at the bottom of the license plate.
Now I have a short license plate that doesn’t interrupt any body lines. I still have to make a final decision on a light…
Someone paid top marketing dollars for pink and green caps. I wonder what’s happening these days that we’ll look back on and chuckle…
Here’s Paul with the ’40 basically how it looks today. He looks pretty much the same too, if you were wondering.
Paul & Dorothy Horton being inducted into the Canadian Street Rodding Hall of Fame, 1994.
Dorothy now has a flat screen monitor and a black phone. She is still using the same calculator, and these pictures are still up in the Welder Series offices. This picture was taken in the first Horton Street Rod Parts location in Breslau, in the late 80′s.
Yours truly chillin’ with the Root Bear. Is it weird that I still remember this? I was a lot more excited than I look in the picture… maybe I suddenly recognized the implications of being captured on film wearing socks and sandals.
St. Paul Nationals, July ’89.
Dear Welder Series…
I am not sure which kit I need. I am working on a 1951 Chevy Fleetline and I do not know where the measurements on your kits originate. ie outside frame or inside. Or just tell me which kit will work. If this is as nifty as it looks I will probably be buying a few from you. Thanks Scott
Scott, this Chev would use a 56″ kit. The dimensions (56, 58, 60″) refer to the distance from wheel mounting flange to flange of the rotors.
Our kit lets you set up the car at the ride height you want, based on your tire size. It will fit your frame because you transfer frame dimensions to the crossmember and upper towers. A worksheet is included with the kit.
I hope we can work with you.
Welder Series’ parts are being used in lots of different ways. If you have digital pictures of how you used our parts, please email them to us. We will put a credit on your account (against future purchases – the credit has no redeemable cash value) of $5.00 for each picture that we use on our website and/or in our catalog. (Note that we might not use all pictures sent.) Please send pictures in .jpg format. Sending the picture gives us the right to use it.
In your cover email, tell us if we can use your name in the Tech Sharing text around your picture(s). We won’t give out your email address or any other personal info.
Tech Sharing is meant to inspire your imagination. Exact measurements will seldom be given because we build hot rods, not production line cars. Tech Sharing is not to be taken as an endorsement of the application. You should decide that for yourself.
We hope you enjoy seeing what others have done and that you will take advantage of this offer.
There are many products on the market for brake pedal grommets, but a) I didn’t have one last night, and b) I guess I don’t have a b). Here’s how I made the brake pedal seal:
I rummaged around the shop, sure I had some rubber sheets or something to use as a seal for the pedal to slide through. After I was all rummaged out, I grabbed the liner out of the bottom of one of the toolbox drawers and decided to sacrifice a corner. It’s not rubber – more like a closed-cell foam, but it will do.
For the outer ring, I’m using our part #3018W. Originally, this is the washer that we include in our Mustang II strut rod bracket kits. We have found a bunch of uses for them though.
I want to drill four holes at 12:00, 3:00, 6:00, and 9:00. I’d trump fixtures over measuring any day of the week, and this is no exception. I dropped the washer in a hole template which has perpendicular reference marks and marked my holes.
To attach the ring to the firewall, I’m using 8-32 knife inserts. These are really handy because they let you use a machine screw into fiberglass.
I’ve painted the washer now, and should have it all ready to install soon. The drawer liner seal will be sandwiched between the washer and the firewall.
This is another article from the ’32 build archive.
Odds and Ends / Powderific
Since the last “miscellaneous stuff” email, there hasn’t been a whole lot going on with the ’32, let alone much more miscellany. In highway terms, it’s “driving on the shoulder”. There are some items on the excuse sheet we’ve hung in the window, however.
First, the space we use to work on the car has been seized by hundreds of odds and ends, all with pallets as magic carpets. The people who were renting the building where we were storing this “stuff” moved, so we had to take it all out. It’s invaded our car building space; thus a chunk of the delay can be blamed away. Second, the powder coaters had some electrical issues while they were trying to set up their oven. The story is a bit longer than that, but all that’s important to me is I can’t be help responsible
In any case, we did get our powder coated parts and they look really great. We are doing most of the removable frame parts (bars, batwings, adjusters, brake pedal, etc.) in flat black. I have a thing for flat black. I would take a punch for flat black. So, with these parts in hand, I’m able to start reassembling the frame! Now if it wasn’t for all these odds and ends… I think I’m going to have an egarage sale. If you like, sign up for our newsletter and you’ll be able to see what edds and onds we’ve got and how cheap you can get them.
Now the next step is to make the frame black too so we can start putting the pieces together. I can’t believe the clarity of the parts even after the powder coating. The welds aren’t muddy looking, and the finish is very consistent. I hope it’s as durable as it is good looking. I’ll keep you posted on the frame painting process.
I know, this is a bit out of place. I’m going to start copying the build articles from our website (www.welderseries.com) to the blog so they’re all in one place.
Seems like it’s been a while… sometimes reality is right. We’ve been really cooking at Welder Series which has lent less time to the ’32 as we would like. But being busy is a very good problem! Now that the frame is black, it’s time to start bolting stuff back on. I’m really enjoying looking at the flat black/aluminum/powder coat black contrast. I hope to be able to update this more regularly now that things are moving on the car again.
Another big treat is having Cam back to help with final assembly. He’s helping out over at Lowdown Hotrods and comes by when he’s done there for the day.
Cam attaches the fuel lines to the rail. Cam is so good, he can thread
a bolt in upside-down.
Here’s the brake pedal return spring/brake light switch activator I made.
I know, a mallet and drift in a final assembly picture isn’t a good sign. No paint was harmed in the setup of this photograph.
While putting the aluminum brake line clamps on the tie rod, I discovered that the end mill I used to create the larger hole had shrunk by the time I drilled the third bracket. Two slipped on nicely, but the third wouldn’t cooperate. Here’s how I enlarged the hole just a tiny bit using a rat tail file.
Using a Sharpie, I drew two lines on the inside of the hole.
I gently persuaded the lines to disappear with the file. Having two lines meant that it was more likely that I could keep the file perpendicular to the hole. Working on a black surface was nice because I could see the files as they came off.
I’d say it worked very well! Three or four rounds were necessary because each time you’re just filing enough to remove the marker line, but you know that you’re keeping the hole round.
Remember these little guys? In case you missed the post, check it out.
I enlarged the holes in the floor to 7/8″…
…then machined these tubes or “slugs” to drop in the holes. The purpose of the slugs is to prevent the head of the bolt from crushing the top layer of fiberglass as the bolt is tightened. I machined them so that they sit on top of the bottom layer of the floor and just under the top layer, so that when the bolt is tightened it will compress the floor just a bit before bottoming out on the slug.
Here is the finished product – we were wondering whether to paint them, but I think they look pretty sharp the way they are. They are only about 1/8″ off the floor, so they shouldn’t catch feet.
What do you think?
This edition is going to focus on the two hiboy roadsters built by Paul Horton and Lloyd Stewart in the mid 80′s.
Chris Horton ready for a ride in the rumble seat. Looks like he got a bug in the teeth!
Pinched and bobbed frame rails with turn signals in the end, contour cut leaf spring liner… this is just a clean front end!
Hand formed 2×5 rails flow with the contour of the body, and also notice the front bars end at the hood line – the same way we still do our hiboy front four link kit.
Lloyd, Paul, and Dorothy with the ’29… probably at a show in SW Ontario.
The ’29 and ’32 in front of our old shop “up on the hill” in the same town we’re still in – Breslau, Ontario.
Paul and Lloyd, I think just after finishing the ’29. I say that because there’s still a tire sticker on the front tire, and the license plate isn’t “HORTON” yet.
Dorothy Horton driving in to Missouri with family friend Michelle. I bet the sticker is worn off the tire by now…
An unfortunate end for the ’29, but a fortunate (I use that term loosely) outcome for my brother and I. I think I mentioned this story in another post, but it’s worth repeating. We ALWAYS rode in the rumble seat on short trips as well as some longer ones. It was really fun – we could see the road wizzing by and feel the air through our hair. For this particular drive (a local poker run), my brother and I requested to ride with family friends in their ’48 Ford. It’s not too far of a stretch to wonder what you would be reading now if I had been in that rumble seat that day. You can barely see battery cable dangling out of the trunk in this picture; the battery was found way down the road. What you can’t see is the rumble seat lid (the seat back). Thankfully, Paul didn’t get hurt too badly…his leg got a bad bruise where it hit and bent the B&M shifter handle, and my mom only had a few broken ribs. The accident happened after a distracted driver in a late model T-boned the ‘29 on a highway.