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1914 T Speedster


Steve_Mack_CT
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Hi all. Well after following some of these great projects for some time I finally decided to get going and pursue a Speedster. We tossed around something unusual and were following up on some larger chassis but decided to go with the tried and true Model T for the first build.

Pictures coming but we finalized a deal last week on a '14 T Speedster project. I think a good start. The chassis is largely done. The stock engine and transmission have been overhauled, and the front end has been rebuilt. We started her up on Friday in mid - 20 degree weather, after over a year she fired right up and runs nicely on the mag. The seller has a nice collection of Model T cars and noted this was the coldest time he ever started a "T". The car also has the Rootlieb floor kit and hood, with oversize white tires on a really sound set of wooden wheels and a sort of unusual two place single seat that appears to have come out of an early firetruck.

Plans include adding the full fender Rootlieb kit, likely going yellow with red upholstery, and about a million details including dropping it a couple inches as it is now stock height, and maybe laying the steering wheel back a bit once we finalize seat placement, etc. Of course we will have to add some interest under the hood but still learning about period speed parts for the "T", so nothing in particular in the plan yet. While not the most exotic project, it is actually kind of cool to be able to personalize it a bit.

Looking forward to contributing to the Speedster section!

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Thanks Baron. I need my son to help me with a gmail problem on my phone but in the meantime here is one pic, taken prior to bringing it home. Note the buckets, which we did not choose, we ended up with the firetruck seat instead. She sure looks interesting sitting next to the '89 MB 560SL! ;)

Our immediate focus will be picking up a lot of small items - for example we used a borrowed set of coils last week to start the engine, etc. and setting up the dash area. As noted above riide height and seat placement will need to be ironed out. We know this will be a full fendered car with splash pans, but I am not sure about straight or curved speedster fenders or a set of stock fenders which with the brass or "square" style T don't look all that bad either. Each changes the look of the car and I sort of need to land on that at the same time as choosing ride height. When things warm up I will be taking off the wooden body and priming it to put some protection on it - not sure if we will put color coat on or not but I suppose it makes sense to remove it one time rather than twice.. And so on... :)

post-50141-143142427063_thumb.png

Edited by Steve_Mack_CT (see edit history)
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Thanks guys - lots of great speedsters on that site for sure. Lots of individuality - I did go through them all, I think, and will be going back... I want to stay period correct but it is cool to look them all over - a great source for stance & fender studies.

Here is a thread from the Model T club with a rather large volume of period Speedster pics - not all Model T either:

http://www.modelt.org/mtfcivb/showthread.php/16-Authentic-original-speedster-pictures/page12

Edited by Steve_Mack_CT
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Agree - glad you like them!!

Thinking aobut how to drop this car a little bit - but I don't care to cut the chassis. I think a couple of vendors offer a dropped front axle but was thinking about reverse eye main springs also - definately out back (available) and perhaps removing a spring in back, dropped axle up front - that might get me a couple inches in total. It does not seem like shackles to lower the leaf spring out back are available which surprised me a bit? Want to retain a level stance. Thoughts/suggestions?

Thanks!

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T's are easy to lower in the front, the rear axle is the rub... to get any real lowering at the rear axle without modifying the frame you have to move the axle ahead of the spring, make some hangers and shorten the drive shaft/tube. Or you can pull a Multi Aldrich and heat the springs near the eyes (after they are reversed) with a torch untill they sag... can't imaginge thats going to be a smooth ride though!

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Using 1926-27 front spindles will give you about a inch drop in the front. That with a reversed main leaf and a leaf or two removed should gain you about 2-2 1/2". Lahti35 is right about the rear. The easiest is to use a reversed-eye main leaf and remove a a couple of leafs. A speedster is very light on the rear so you'll be fine. If you are running fenders, this is the way to go.

If you want to go for more of a racer instead of a speedster look, an underslung front end and Z'd rear rear crossmember is the way to go and give a great low look. Typically, these mods are for Ts without fenders.

Antique T Motorsports has some nice lowering kits, I have used both the front and rear kits with good success. They make a quality product: http://www.antiquetmotorsports.com/

I like their bucket seats too.

Edited by motoringicons (see edit history)
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I used a lower rear cross member and that worked out well even with finders. I did have to make my own fender brackets but that allows you to put the fenders at the right height which adds to the low look.

You can always put the original cross member back with hot rivets if you wanted. Lots of options, have fun with it.

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