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The Ressurection of Daphne - a 1932 DL


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When I bought the car in 1965 it had an electric fuel pump and the mechanical pump had been removed and the plate installed.  I never changed it and neither did Phil. so it's been that way for at least 51 years.  I plan to put a pump back on just for looks and keep and electric pump.

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, it looks like my freshly rebuilt and painted transmission is coming back out.  I discovered a leak after filling it up with oil.  At first I though I hadn't tightened the drain plug, and sure enough, it was a bit loose.  So I tightened it up and put a sheet of paper under that area to see what was what.  Today I discovered another spot of oil in the same place.  On close inspection, the oil was running down the case from the front of the tranny and collecting on the drain plug and dripping off.  So, I have a problem up front somewhere.  All new seals and bearings, but I must have missed something.  Oil is filled to the correct level.  Back to the drawing boards!

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Richard,

I have a similar problem and a leak from the same area.

I'm not sure if the transmissions are similar but I believe mine is leaking from the layshafts that run the full length inside the gearbox. I don't believe they were sealed and if sitting for a short time can leak fluid.

Let me know what you find......then you can come out and fix mine !!!  hahaha

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Well, I'm not planning to re-engineer the gearbox, so I may have to live with a pan under the car!  I'll let you know what i find - if anything.  I'd love to come out and help you, Ian - just send me the airfare and I'll be right there.

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On some of the later Chrysler built vehicles there is a gasket that needs to go between the bell housing and transmission and if it is not there you will have a leak. Is that true on your car too?

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8 minutes ago, ply33 said:

On some of the later Chrysler built vehicles there is a gasket that needs to go between the bell housing and transmission and if it is not there you will have a leak. Is that true on your car too?

Yes....I was wondering if you used a paper gasket there.

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26 minutes ago, Ian_Greenlaw said:

What years do you believe had the gasket ? I don't think mine had one but never want to rule out a possibility that this could be an issue.

Not really clear from my parts book. In the better illustrated '36 through '48 Plymouth parts book it shows all passenger cars using a "Transmission case to clutch housing gasket". In my older parts book I don't see a gasket specifically labeled such and the few illustrations in there are not helpful.

 

Since the '36-'48 parts book shows that Plymouth trucks have a "not used" on them for that gasket and since the trucks often seemed to use smaller numbers (i.e. earlier designs) it is possible that the gasket use came about in '35 or '36.

 

All this for Plymouth, but from '33 up Plymouth and Dodge were very close on the drive train.

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I have seen silicone sealer smeared where those shafts come thru the case.

I guess that would work if the there was a bit of a void there.

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There was no gasket when I took the tranny off and it hadn't been touched since before 1965, so I assume there is a problem somewhere.  I just went out and checked, and after a day and a half there have been no further leaks.  I'll give it a day or two and see what happens.  I did some vigorous "shifting" to get the oil moving and will await the results breathlessly.  It's a lot easier to address the problem now while the body is off then tackle it later.

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If the shafts are leaking through the case, try a little Permatex Qwik-metal sealant on the shafts. Of course it means pulling the tranny apart and cleaning the shafts but it does help.Used it on my Model A tranny and had no leaks from the rear shafts. 

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Taylor, I think the only way to fully test it is to have some way to make the transmission gears turn at speed. Simply motioning the gear shifter won't do much to stir the oil up in the transmission. Having the gears move at speed will stir up the oil to put the needed stress on the areas prone to leaking.

Hope for the best.

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Another day with no sign of a leak.  I'm waiting for my distributor to get back from the rebuilder, then I can start the motor.  I think I'll do that first, then get the tranny spinning while the frame is up on stands and see what develops.  I misinformed my readers - the leak came from the back of the trans, not the front.  I know I put a gasket between the trans and the freewheeling unit, and feeling around up the that area I can find no oil residue.  This really has me stumped.  Like I said, once I get the tranny spinning we'll see what happens.

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Totally off topic, but I was fooling around with my new 3D imaging program and i decided to make a gas station.  I picked this fairly simple Richfield station from the twenties and this is what I came up with.  I still haven't textured the surfaces, so all you're looking at is color, but it gives a good idea of how the finished product will appear.  I rendered it as a night scene to check out the emitters.  I still have the interior and the pumps to do.  Something to keep the mind active in my spare time.

p1908.jpg

Render One Night.jpg

Render Two Night.jpg

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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It looks like my transmission leak may have been another senior moment on my part.  I discovered it was still oozing oil from somewhere yesterday morning.  Seeing it was leaking from the rear of the unit, I checked the drain plug for the free wheeling case and, sure enough, it wasn't all that tight.  So, I  tightened it up, hoping it might solve the problem, but there didn't seem to be any oil around the plug, so I doubted this was the solution..  Sure enough, this morning I still had oil around the rear of the unit.  I did what most of you probably do when this type of annoying thing happens - I stared at the transmission for about fifteen minutes trying to figure out what the heck was going on.  The only place the leak could be coming from was the area where the free-wheeling unit was attached to the transmission.  I know I put a new gasket in place before joining the two, so that wasn't it - and then I stared at the six nuts that hold it on.  Only one of these bolts goes directly on the stud.  The other five hold on various brackets for the parking brake apparatus.  I dimly remembered keeping those nuts loose so I could get all the brackets in place.  Had I tightened them down afterwards?  I checked, and in a real head slapping moment, found that they were all loose!  I'd tightened them a bit, but apparently never went back and really cinched them down.  All turned a lot before they were tight.  We'll see, but I strongly suspect this was the problem all along.  Live and learn.

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5 minutes ago, Taylormade said:

All turned a lot before they were tight.  We'll see, but I strongly suspect this was the problem all along.  Live and learn

Someplace along the way when putting my car back together I did not fully tighten the rear axle drum nuts nor put a cotter pin in. In retrospect, I think I left the pin off to remind me the nuts were not torqued. Maybe the nuts weren't torqued because I thought I'd have to remove the drum for a last look at the brakes before driving. But I really don't remember why I did it. However, it came back to haunt me on an early test drive when one of the rear wheels came off. That was a learning experience.

 

My current thinking is that if I don't actually finish up on a component or repair that I put a huge tag on the item(s) that I've left undone so that a quick visual will tell me where I left off and what is not finished. Especially if the next time I think I'm going to look at the area is in the indefinite future and the area/part/assembly looks reasonably complete and finished. Something like a "remove before flight" tag used on aircraft but perhaps worded "finish before driving".

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While were talking freewheeling units, if you haven't added it to the "to do" list, once you have things back together and have been able to run the transmission up to speed, make sure to top off the fill plug on the transmission. The freewheeling unit doesn't get fully filled up until after you run the transmission awhile. I think that's in the manual somewhere so you may have already seen that warning.

 

For others who have freewheeling units, and haven't discovered it yet, while there's no separate fill plug for the freewheeling unit, it does have its own separate drain plug. After I got my present DL I change the transmission oil which didn't look all that bad so I knew the PO had done it fairly recently. But when I opened the freewheeling unit's drain plug, the nastiest yellow/green gook oozed, out so I knew that had been overlooked for who know how long.

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After tightening down the freewheeling unit I went out to the garage later in the day and discovered oil on the case.  I did a through cleanup, hoping the tightening of the nuts had squeezed some oil out from between the cases.  Today there is no sign of oil.  The next few days should prove things out.

 

 

One more 3D computer image.  Creating the spokes was the killer.   I'm going to build the entire car in my spare time - when I'm not working on Daphne..  I love those old Firestone racing tires!

 

wheels.jpg

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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7 minutes ago, Taylormade said:

I run a 50/50 ethylene glycol mix. Not sure when ethylene glycol was introduced but it is mentioned in the original owners manual for my car so I know it existed by 1933.

11 minutes ago, Taylormade said:

One more 3D computer image.  Creating the spokes was the killer.   I'm going to build the entire car in my spare time - when I'm not working on Daphne..  I love those old Firestone racing tires!

An offset valve stem on a wheel mounted with treadless white tires seems like an anachronism to me. Does look nice though.

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Strangely enough, I took that straight off a photo of a racing tire I found on the Internet.  If it is incorrect, it's easy to fix - no drilling new holes or repainting the damage, just a few minutes with the computer and all is well.  What type of valve stem would you expect to see on a tire/wheel of this vintage?

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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10 hours ago, Taylormade said:

Strangely enough, I took that straight off a photo of a racing tire I found on the Internet.  If it is incorrect, it's easy to fix - no drilling new holes or repainting the damage, just a few minutes with the computer and all is well.  What type of valve stem would you expect to see on a tire/wheel of this vintage?

 

I could be entirely off, but I'd expect a metal valve stem and I'd expect it to be centered among the spokes and pointing radially inward.

 

The wheel itself looks to be of the general style popular from the late 20s into the early '30s but the tire reminds me of one from the early brass era. Maybe there was some overlap between the two in the late teens or early 20s but it seems unlikely to me.

 

Take in to consideration that I am not an expert in wheel or tire history at all, I've just built up some impressions by looking at (mostly restored) cars over the years.

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I welcome any advice and I believe your thinking on the tire stem issue is correct  - I'm going to change it to metal and between the spokes.  I based my drawing on the enclosed photo and just noticed the stem is exactly where you said it should be!.  Most of the early thirties tires I have found have no tread like the one I drew, and I just like the look.  They probably didn't come in white, but I'm taking artistic license. :).

firestone-highspeed-600-20-side-10in-rgb.png

1931MillerV16photo-creditIMSphoto1.jpg

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3 hours ago, dc-8dave said:

Hello Dick,

                       Here you go, I hope it helps.

                                                                                 DC-8 Dave

Well, that's interesting. It seems they not only changed the filling instructions by the time my late-DL came out, but they redesigned the Free Wheeling unit.

 

Here's a page from the April 1932 edition of the instruction book. Note that the clusters of 3 rollers that interact with the cam (as shown in Dave's book) have been replaced by 10 equally spaced rollers around a cam with more lobes. There may be other changes but that's the one that immediately jumps out.

 

Also, the servicing instructions read: "When draining the transmission the drain plug (96) must be removed to thoroughly drain the Free Wheeling unit. This unit should be refilled by refilling the transmission to the proper level. The power plant should be run for ten minutes, then enough lubricant added to the transmission to again fill to the filler hole." That sounds a lot easier than needing to remove the speedometer cable connection!

 

Not sure where Dick's early-DL fits in with those changes.

Trans GS.jpg

Edited by Phil 32DL6
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I may have put this in before but you cannot take too many photos prior to tear down and ,as I have found,you cannot put too many tag notes on completed work especially if something on the work is still to be done e.g. tightening nuts. Been there done that!

 

 

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My leaking transmission has turned in to a gigantic pain in the you know what.  I have finally tracked down the source of the leak - I think.  First of all, almost everything on this car is easily accessible, with one exception - the rear of the transmission!  Naturally, that's where the leak is coming from.  The "Floating Power" mounting setup on the transmission is oddly designed, almost as if Dodge Brothers had hired an English engineer to come across the pond and design it for them.  As you can see in the picture below, the rear of the tranny is surrounded buy the gray-painted mount.  At the bottom of the gray mount is the thick rubber pad the supports the transmission.  This is right up against the rear of the transmission case and it makes it almost impossible to get my fat fingers down in there to feel for oil and try to ascertain the source of the leak.  Visually, there is no way to see what is going on back there.  (Sorry about the rusty shift lever, it's just on temporarily to test shifting the gears, and is not yet painted or restored).

 

To get to the suspect area I will have to remove the entire parking brake mechanism, then take off the front U-joint (A real pain as the nuts are buried deep inside the parking brake drum),  remove the parking brake drum, take off the mounting bolts that hold the trans mount to the trans (held on with metal tab washers that took forever to source and which I hope I don't damage prying the tabs back), wrestle  the mount and rubber pad off the frame and back of the trans to finally see the area I need to examine.  It was an all day job to put this all together a few months ago and now I'll need to do it again.

 

 

trans 1.jpg

 

This is where I strongly suspect the leak is coming from and it's not good news.  This shot of my spare transmission shows the rear of the case lying on its side.  The freewheeling case has been removed - it's held on by the five studs visible in the shot.  I can just get my fingers up in this area and I get oil when I touch the right shaft visible at the bottom.  I can't reach the left shaft.  The oil is either coming out of the space where the shaft meets the case - it's an interference fit, or it's coming from just above from a leak in the gasket between the trans case and the freewheeling case.  I'm hoping it's the gasket, even though it means taking the case back off and making a new gasket.  But I suspect the leak is from around the two shafts.  They are not sealed, they just stick out of the back of the case and are held in by a flat plate that fits in notches in the shafts and bolts to the case.  The amount of grease and oil around this area on the spare tranny makes me think this is a problem area.

 

The real question is how to seal the shafts?  There is no gasket or rubber grommet that will address the problem.  It's a poor design with no real solution that I can see.  The new oil in the tranny is very thick and it is still leaking, albeit a very small amount.  But once the oil heats up in a normal driving situation and thins out, I'll have a Niagara of oil back there.  More to come.

 

trans 2.jpg

trans 3.jpg

 

The real question is how to seal the shafts?  There is no gasket or rubber grommet that will address the problem.  It's a poor design with no real solution that i can see.  The new oil in the tranny is very thick and it is still leaking, albeit a very small amount.  But once the oil heats up in a normal driving situation, I'll have a Niagara of oil back there.  More to come.

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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I spent the morning taking everything - and I mean everything - off the transmission.  After loosening dozens of bolts and nuts, chipping paint, and much muttering, I finally got down to the bare back of the tranny and there was the leak.  To my pleasant surprise, it looks like it's coming from the joint between the trans case and the freewheeling case, not the shafts as I had suspected.  It appears to be running down from just above the shafts, then down and around them.  I was in the shower when I realized I hadn't taken a photo of the leaking area.  I'll try to post something later today.  To make sure this problem is permanently solved, I plan the remove the freewheeling case and replace the gasket (which I obviously screwed up in the first place) and to seal the shafts with Permatex 20297.  Then I'll leave it for a few days to check for leaks before I put everything back on.

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Before and after pictures, plus a table full of parts that had to be removed.  I never had any problems with the transmission when I owned the car and Phil never reported anything while he owned it.  I mistakenly thought this part of the restoration would  be the least problematic.  WRONG!  Learning how to rebuild one of these transmissions and finding a new shaft with the correct helix to the gear has been quite a journey.  Now I get to take the transmission apart a second time.

 

 

trans 1.jpg

trans down.jpg trans debirs.jpg

 

Here is the leak that has caused all the latest angst.  Looks like it is coming from just above the shafts.  Some of the dark stuff you see is gasket cement that oozed out during assembly.  I must have missed a spot or damaged the gasket during assembly.

 

trans leak 1.jpg

trans leak 2.jpg

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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No one to blame for the leak but yours truly.  I took the freewheeling unit off - if you ever have to do this, be sure to remove the speedometer drive before you pull it off or you'll chew up the drive gear - and discovered two problems.  First, four of the five studs screwed out rather than the nuts spinning off.  Bad assembly procedure on my part.  I seem to remember them being loose, but why I didn't seal them with Loctite when I put the unit together I'll never understand.  The leak was coming from around one of the studs.  They will go back in with a sealer this time around.  In this shot you can see the problem area - the stud that used to occupy the hole above and to the right of the shaft.  The area around the shaft  was not leaking.

 

leaking stud.jpg

 

Second problem - the gasket was not sealing correctly.  The gasket cement didn't do the job.  It literally fell of and wasn't stuck to anything.  I cleaned this area carefully before I applied it, so this stuff was useless. Anyone have any recommendations on something that actually works?  In this photo you can see the wet area around the hole where the leaking stud was located.  At least this was an easy thing to figure out and I can fix it.  Just a wasted couple of days due to my negligence.

 

gasket 1.jpg

gasket 2.jpg

 

If anyone is getting tired off this topic - I know I am - I'm sorry.  I get a bit obsessive about this stuff at times, but I find it helps me to go back at times and learn for my mistakes.  Thanks for your patience..

Edited by Taylormade (see edit history)
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