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1934 Dodge Full Body Off Restoration


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Hi Dave,

One thing I was able to do when I first bought the car was remove the body from the chassis. This was probably the only thing that had never been touched on the car. The Dodge has two lengths of wood running under the body from the rear door to just under the metal toe board. someone on ebay was selling new ones at one point. I had to have mine remade as they were falling apart. Width wise, opening the front door, they went from the other side of the wood floor panels to just under where the sill cover would go. In addition to this, rather than rubber they used a tough fabric compounded pads on every bolt hole along the chassis. The body with those lengths of timber then sat and bolted through these pads. I'll post some photos of when I removed the body and you'll see the pads as I left them on the chassis to take a photo. Again a lot of these were a little worse for wear so when I replaced them I used rubber pads that was made from the same martial that is used in gyms on the floor under the weight lifters floors. The stuff when the weight lifters slam their weights on the floor, this stuff was sitting on the floor to protect it and the weights. These we approx the right size and could be cut easliy with a hacksaw.

Ian

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Does the vacuum hose get split along it's length and wrapped around the metal shaft or does the metal shaft get removed somehow to slide the vacuum hose on?

It has been a very long time since I did mine but I do recall I did not split the hose, just drove the shaft out with a punch. If it slips when you put it back in, you can probably carefully crimp the bracket until it grips or hit the end of the shaft with a prick punch, which should expand it enough to lock it in place. Or, epoxy it in place.

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Okey dokey....time to fit the cowl vent.

Now that the vent has been resprayed after my little accident. I used chalk to mark around the opening. Sat the black neoprene over it and using a scalple cut out the pattern.

A few minor adjustment and it sat snugly in place.

I then tucked the vent in place and attached the opening linkage. Now the moment of truth where I had to repair the opening handle support bracket. It fitted after a few goes and opened and closed well. IIt looked more like a surgical procedure than working on a car. Only problem is that I thought the ball bearing went in after I fitted the handle....wrong...removed everything and had to hold the spring loaded handle, support arm bits and the linkage and at the same time push the pivot link into place. Came up working well using Knobless's repair kit I got from him. Well done Steve....it works.

Reattached the front screen ( after dropping the screws down the drain tube ) and a happy result.....and no further scratches.

After that I attached the drain tube and ran it down the side if the inside of the cowl. I might use some polyeurathane just to hold in place.

Cheers

Ian

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Okey dokey....time to fit the cowl vent.

Now that the vent has been resprayed after my little accident. I used chalk to mark around the opening. Sat the black neoprene over it and using a scalple cut out the pattern.

A few minor adjustment and it sat snugly in place.

I then tucked the vent in place and attached the opening linkage. Now the moment of truth where I had to repair the opening handle support bracket. It fitted after a few goes and opened and closed well. IIt looked more like a surgical procedure than working on a car. Only problem is that I thought the ball bearing went in after I fitted the handle....wrong...removed everything and had to hold the spring loaded handle, support arm bits and the linkage and at the same time push the pivot link into place. Came up working well using Knobless's repair kit I got from him. Well done Steve....it works.

Reattached the front screen ( after dropping the screws down the drain tube ) and a happy result.....and no further scratches.

After that I attached the drain tube and ran it down the side if the inside of the cowl. I might use some polyeurathane just to hold in place.

Cheers

Ian

Hi Ian

looks great, glad everything worked out, just a thought, the small set screw on the handle can be backed out to ad a tiny bit of grease to keep the spring and ball lubed, I believe that is why the original set up ( same as kit ) failed rusts up and stop ball from moving putting pressure on the handle.

The screw can always be backed out after install to lube.

Wish I was back into mine, did find some 34 handles, ( need 1 more to complete the set, window winder )

I will be building garage as soon as weather allows, the foundation has been in the ground sence 2009 , once done everything goes from my old garage under house to the new out back, ahhh

now I can remove body and get things going, also stumbled upon 1933 Plymouth coupe frame and drivetrain , complete that I have to go pick up soon, good deal.

Can wait to see more progress on yours, your almost home....hahaha.

I also am in talks with a metal guy that may be doing new steel aprons for 34's only, I will let you know when they will be available. If anyone is looking, sure beats those Fiberglas jobbers.

take care

Steve

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Hi Steve,

Sounds like you'll have some space. My resto started on my mums garage and when we built our house we allowed for a triple garage. We parked 3 cars, opened their doors and allowed for a person to fit between them. That gave us the width of the garage. Glad I did as now I still have room to move around the cars.

I was lucky my original splash aprons were in good condition. Had them blasted and powder coated and came up looking like new.

Ill back out that screw as suggested and put a bit of grease in there. Good suggestion.

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Does the vacuum hose get split along it's length and wrapped around the metal shaft or does the metal shaft get removed somehow to slide the vacuum hose on?

I would guess that if you can't remove the shaft you could split the hose piece with a long spiral cut so the cut line is never taking all the pressure in one spot. Maybe at least half way around the hose. A careful small drop of super glue on the two ends of the spiral cut may also help the longevity of the new "roller".

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hey all,

Started on the front window reassemble.

First step was to make sure that the vent window frame fitted into the upper pivot hole. After chroming I had to redrill the correct size so both fit well now.

Cleaned up the front window slide mechanisms, vent window pivot mechanism and the vent window worm gear and housings.

All came up pretty well.

Cheers

Ian

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I think that catch and lock assembly is the most complicated part on the entire 34 Mopar line. I have rebuilt window frames on the 34 PE Plymouths I have and I am almost glad that my 34 Dodge coupe is a DRXX without the vent windows. Real pain. Be very careful with re-installing them in the window frames because they are held in with those through-body rivets and the pot metal of which the assembly is made is very prone to cracking (although from the pictures, yours look fairly solid). Continuing to enjoy your progress and envious of your skill set.

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Hi Scott,

i have 4 mechanisms and three are cracked. The only saving grace is that each end is held in with two rivets on each side therefore supporting the whole length. I've got some new rivets to put in but like some of the jobs not looking forward to it.

Not a huge skill set I'm afraid. I'll keep posting though.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all,

You know when you have a job to do and you put it off because you are really hesitant that you might stuff it up completely ?

This was one of those jobs......reinstalling the window locking mechanism.

Ok, so I got the frame and my cleaned up locking mechanism and checked with an old frame to make sure everything is around the correct way. Well that fits !

Then I got my brass rivet ( from the Restoration Supply Company ) and put into the hole. I used a piece of thick aluminium and drilled a countersink approx. the size of the head of the rivet to sit it in. And with a cloth over it, turned it over and taped the other side to avoid any scratches. I googled how to "peen" a rivet and after a few short clips I started peening !

Seemed to work well and a few of them needed a bit of finishing. I then installed the vent wind out window gear support bracket in place and realised this should have been done first as it was a real struggle to get it in. Checking back with my photos this was taken out second so should have been installed first. Never mind we eventually got it in and again went through the process with the rivets. Overall the job came off better than I( and my brother ) expected. He was holding the frame which made it a little easier. We also realised that sitting the aluminium that the rivet head sits in on a solid price of steel rather than a wooden block made it for effective as when you peen the rivet it tends to bounce with wood.

I'll repeat this process for the other side a bit later on.

Cheers

Ian

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  • 2 weeks later...

A bit more to report.

I dragged out a envelope that I received from the States 9 years ago with new vent window seal rubbers in it ( took a while to find I can tell you ! ).

These came with instructions too and after applying a little dishwashing liquid to then and a lot of prodding with a blunt instrument all I can say is WOW what a fit.

These things looked like they had come off the production line in 34. Next step was to check the frames which also fitted like a glove. Final step is to check the glass and frame together in the seal and with a bit of adjustment I applied a few daps of Polyeurathane to hold them in place and let dry.

I also tried to fix one of the window rollers. Should be ok and use some new rubber tubing. Sorry about those pics its a bit blurry.

Cheers

Ian

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Ian, don't you love it when something finally comes together and everything fits like it's supposed to? As I continue my restoration, I, too, am always finding boxes and envelopes full of things I'd forgotten I'd even had. After viewing your posts on your front windows rebuild, I'm glad my old 32 just has a plain roll-up window. Don't get me wrong, I love the split vents, the chrome and the unusual mechanism, butIi'm sure glad i don't have to work on them!

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Absolutely......Ihave found a few things I have no idea what they are or where they go......I guess I'll be driving down the road and half the car will fall off !

i even found a matching pair of tail lights that I bought and was going to use just in case I couldn't get originals. Now I have to figure out what they suit.

By the way......the running boards you made.......great job.

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post-88284-0-45052600-1431590495_thumb.jpost-88284-0-68907500-1431590530_thumb.jpost-88284-0-55502100-1431590554_thumb.jStill going at it. I'm still getting the dints out of the rear tail light housings. I also had a couple of brackets made up by my daughters boyfriend for the rear indicators. I want to paint the bottom of them and I'll polish the tops to match.

I've inserted the vent window glass in their frames and waiting for the polyeurathane to dry...see how it looks !

Cheers

Ian

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Got a phone call today from the electroplater. Picked up the horn grills, sun visor arms and clamps, along with vent window straps and opening arms. Came up really well especially given the time I put into them. I did finish as best as I could the rear tail lights. They are going to fill a hole in one and recover in copper. One he said was perfect ( obviously the less dint I had to start with ) the other he can feel ribs around it. It must be slightly out of round. Anyhow I'll see when they come back.

Cheers

Ian

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A bit more progress. I installed the rear indicator light brackets, completed the wiring and mounted the indicators.

These were originally for a motorcycle but I think the shape compliments the rear tail lights ( if and when I ever get them finished ).

I did buy there 9 years ago now so I must have been thinking ahead then !

 

Cheers

Ian

 

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post-88284-0-76261500-1432793763_thumb.jpost-88284-0-22601300-1432793868_thumb.jOk, so the chassis back at the workshop and the panels back on the car and the gap on each side is even now. That's a relief !

Finally able to get the whole car and chassis back home again and next I'm off to see the painter. This guy paints a lot of Cobras and many old cars have passed through his spray booth. In fact "Oldcar" who posts here regularly, Bernie, had had a few cars painted by him. I called in to see Dave and he's one of those guys you like instantly. After discussing the colours and bringing his paint samples home we decided on Black guards, Maroon Body and a Packard Ivory swage line, as many Australian 34's had swage lines painted rather than pinstripes ( at least that's what I've been able to find out ).

Dave painted up the side of a dishwasher for me to take the colours home. Only issue I have is it changes colour in the spray booth, to inside his shop to outside in the sunlight. He said he would also paint under the body and inside all the panels which would also protect the insides from stone chips.

While also doing this I received a package back for the trumpet horns that I was getting Chrome Painted as plating would have been too difficult. I got them back and was not happy with the finish, so I sent them off again to be redone.

The rims for the car also needed rounding and rerolling so they are also at the shop.

Cheers

Ian

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Bit more progress, I finished mounting the glass in the vent window frames after a lot of adjusting and readjusting. After letting them dry for a week I cleaned the glass and mounted the window assembly in the frame. Had to clean up these teenie tiny screws that go in the base that hold the vent window to the ventilator pivot base. They seem to open and shut fine. I checked the door ventilator control assembly and found something odd. Each assembly has a ventilator driven disc that when you turn the handle inside the car, another disc turns and rotates another disc by hitting these paddles against each other. The problem is I have two sets and the main driven disc is turned around and faces backwards. Not making sense is it ?

You cant swap them over as its specific for each side of the car. I don't think it matters and the same action happens whether you open the vent window or close it. The disc still has to rotate back and forth. Anyhow I'm going to use the ones I've cleaned up.

My daughter had her debutante last weekend and we had 3 stretch limos in out Court. One was a Dodge stretch !!

Cheers

Ian

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Not too long ago I acquired a 34 DR 4dr Sedan. I was told at least some of the 33-34 Mopars used wood between the body and frame. Looks like yours had more conventional rubber pads where the body to frame bolts go. Is that correct? Does anyone else know what is correct here, or if coupes or convertibles use wood instead of rubber?

Mine is nearly the same as yours except it has the rear mounted spare instead of side mounts.

Thanks,

Dave

 

Hi Dave, 

 

I have a '38 1/2 ton RC pick up, the cab to the frame mount is a spring loaded bolt and nut, with wood used as spacers between the spring and frame.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey all,

A bit more progress. A while ( long time ) ago I posted a problem I had with y horns where the thread broke away from the main horn body. I got a guy up the road to make up a tapered fitting that would sit inside the trumpet and a threaded fitting would then screw over it on the outside giving the same look at the original horn.

After getting the horns chrome painted and installing the mounting fittings, I was able to get the mesh grills in the front of them and the end result I think looks pretty awsome. Very happy with the two of them.

Currently working on about 5 things at once so I'm jumping back and forth as things slow down. The biggest job is the front windscreens I'm still working on. I'll post some more pics when I sort them out.

Cheers

Ian

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  • 3 weeks later...

Is it just me or do some of the fiddly things take a huge amount of time to sort out ?

I started working on the wiring inserts for the rear tail lights. The originals look a little worse for wear. Even the start with cleaned up brass backing plate and temp wires looked heaps better. I took them to a guy at work who resoldered the wires using original type wire that was left over from the Vintage Wiring Loom I had made. ( I wish I could solder like that and it took him 10 minutes ). Polished the insides of where the bulb goes and fitted the connectors in place.

Next I'm working on the wiper motors ( not original but they came with the car......no sign of the original ones ) and the pin that opens the locking mechanism for the vent window.

Cheers

Ian

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  • 4 weeks later...

Finally a bit more progress. I started out by using stainless steel and made a pin but I found I couldn't peen it over. I then decided to use some solid brass rod. To hold it I got 2 pieces of wood and drilled a smaller hole to hold the rod in place. Cut the rod to the right size and hand filed it down to suit the vent window latch lever. Once one side was done redid the other side to suit the cam. After a mock set up got my brother to hold it and gently peened each side over. Then the next tricky bit was to get the Window Support Connecting Link in place. Maybe I should have done this first before anything was assembled. Eventually got the after a long of trial and error. All I have to do now is hope the mechanism still works. Then its just the felt in the channels and the anti rattle liners and its finished. Easy said than done.....this step alone has taken ages.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thought I'd do something that was pretty straight forward......not really

I got the two pull knobs that had new wires attached to them, the two inserts that were rechromed and the cable housing that I cleaned up and sprayed black.

I used the same blocks of wood that I used for the pivot rod and put the black cable housing in it. I then got the two inserts and put the over the cable housings and using a rubber mallet tapped them in place. Once done I got the pull knob wire and after running it through my gloves laced with grease I inserted it in the housing all the way through. Once done I repeated for the other assembly and then installed them in the car. I'll tighten everything up on the carburettor a bit later on.

Cheers

Ian

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  • 3 weeks later...

Did some work on the electricals the other day.

As my light switch was non existent, I bought an old one from the States which came with a nice chrome knob.

Connected the wires and installed it in the dash.

Also got an ignition switch ( again, mine was beyond repair ) and using a 1934 Dodge door lock escutcheon and a rubber grommet I was able to get a finished product that looks authentic. I had to make a plate that sat behind the dash so now once that part of the electrics is sorted should be ready to install. Incidently the guy who had the car before me cut off the original ignition switch bracket which I tried to remount but after the car was painted was too late once I found out where it went.

One of the pitfalls I guess of not being able to disassemble the car myself.

Anyhow, a bit more progress !

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Thanks for that. trying to juggle full time work, kids, house etc....I wish I could more along a bit quicker than I am.

Got a call yesterday from my chrome plater and the rear tail light housings are ready to be picked up looking forward to going to work to see how they turned out.

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I'm lucky that this guy does a lot of car parts and he doesn't mind giving advice ( he tells you what he thinks without pulling any punches ) and I'd prefer that so at least you know where you stand.

All I have to do now is reassemble them. I think the screw holes were rusted and I'll have to retap them which in turn means trying to find suitable slotted metalthreads.......never ends does it ! part of the fun though.

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  • 2 weeks later...

More progress.....

Painted the cover supports that go over the front bumper irons and a bracket I made up to house the flasher cam and a relay.

Found a good use for my wife's rose bushes !!!

Also got the internals of the rear tail lights sorted out. Couldn't get the internal back in at first so then I put the ending in my vice and gently squeezed them and moved the tail light housing along a bit at a time. End result was they went in and no damage to the chrome housing.

Next I might tackle the instrument panel and see how that goes.

Cheers

Ian

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Hi,

Queensland hey.......I'll be lucky to make it to the corner store the way I'm going...ha

Got an oil leak under the gearbox. I think its from where the layshafts are protruding out.

Might have to do what Richard ( Taylormade ) did and do a rebuild, although it was rebuilt previously.

I'll have to think about that one !!

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More progress,

Thought I'd tackle one of the rear tail lights today. As there wasn't any earth I made up a cable that I attached under the rear guard which is hidden. Soldered the wires and used heat shrink to protect the joins. Using the new screws mounted the housing and then reinserted a reflective lens that I modified from an outdoor spotlight previously. Overall happy with the result, so I might try the other side next.

Tomorrow, I'm off to an American Motoring Show at Flemington Racecourse ( where they hold the Melbourne Cup horse race ) and weather is suppose to be exceptional so looking forward to that.

Cheers

Ian

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