1927/28 Dodge Brothers series 128/129 Tourer

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Just an observation I've seen a few times with these cars on the tie rod: If someone used a floor jack with a decent size plate to lift the front end, many times that plate also contacts the tie rod. This causes the tie rod to bend. With the bend in the middle of the TR, its a very high possibility of how the rod got bent as many lift these cars using the center of the axle. I've also knownof cars that have fallen off jacks and blocks onto the TR and the same results have happened. The fixed end of your rod is a wishbone and in the picture it doesn't look level to the the control arm. I'm sure you checked for tension in the wishbone pin but a fixed end tie rod should not have a bend as no half rotations are possible, only full rotations. I believe there's a good possibility your rod got bent at one time as I described above. I could be wrong though and I'm just bringing the possibility to light.

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Finished the sump.  Had it re galvanised a while ago but was a bit nervous about re-fitting the inner oil tray (removed before plating) as it’s rivited in and the rivets are sealed with solder.


Worked out quite well, made sure everything was very clean to start with and tinned all surfaces and it ended up easier than expected.


Rear drain tube soldered in place


Inner tray ready to fit



Tray riveted in place



Rivet heads soldered to seal



Edited by RichBad (see edit history)
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Fitting the rear brakes.

Had new lining fitted (modern material bonded to bands) but also fitted rivets (mainly to fill the holes and look correct).  Note, if restoring your brakes with bonded lining it’s best to clean/bead blast the bands first, then fit the lining and then paint/powdercoat.  The temperature to cure the lining glue will damage the paint/powdercoat (found that the hard way).


All the parts ready to fit


Bands and linkages fitted



Adjusted after fitting the wheel/drum



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Something in my memory is telling me I have read that a different, softer lining should be used for these types of brakes, rather the modern hard stuff. I wouldn't know where to find it though. Maybe on these fora somewhere?

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Thanks - when I took it to the relining shop they said they had different grades - I asked for the softest possible.  I’ve always done this on anything I’ve had to get re-lined as I figure it gives better low temp performance at the cost of less life of the lining (not really an issue on this) and also reduced wear rate of the drum.  

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Rebuilt the front wheels and fitted to the car.  Finally the car has four wheels again:)


Cleaned up the felt seal contact area and fitted new bearings.


Lots of sanding, two coats of sanding sealer and 5 coats of varnish.5A0C0757-36AE-4180-803B-36C60FE20326.thumb.jpeg.407c7402e5a39a8c606551f504c93b6c.jpeg

Spokes fitted and inner hub being fitted.




New felt seals and bearings



Fitted to the car.  One was running slightly untrue (about 3mm runout) but when I fitted the rim & tyre it seemed to even out.  The order of tightening the rim bolts seems to make a big difference. 



Four wheels at last!



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Looks really good. Great job on the wheels, are those the original spokes?

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8 hours ago, r1lark said:

Looks really good. Great job on the wheels, are those the original spokes?

Thanks! Not sure about the spokes, I think they could well be original as it didn’t look like they had been apart before.  There were a couple that weren’t so good but with a good sand and varnish they came up nice and have a good bit of character.  They were all very tight when I refitted them too which hopefully means they’ll last a while longer:)

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Finished the steering wheel.  It wasn’t looking great to start with but after a good sand and filling some gaps with epoxy it seemed to come up good.  I know the wood and polished aluminium finish isn’t original but it looks good and a shame to hide.


Sanded the wood and aluminium and sealed with a couple of coats of sanding sealer.


spokes polished and first coat of varnish.


After about 7 coats of varnish.


Steering mounted engine controls ready for fitting.  Had to make a new inner shaft as the horn cable was corroded solid inside the original.  Made the new one out of stainless.  Also had to make a new horn button as the original was missing, used aluminium but I think the originals were Bakelite.



Finished wheel fitted


Control levers and friction ring at lower end.  Thanks Bob for making the friction ring as mine was missing.



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Well, thought I was making progress with the engine but took a step backwards, all the gory details here -

so started finishing off some of the other items.  


Running boards with new rubber and polished the aluminium trim strips ready to fit.  Also got some nice aluminium rivets.



One finished and back on the car.



And the other



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Got rear springs back today, reset, cleaned up and new bushes.  Fitted to the car and for the first time in a while have the car on all four wheels again:)





Sits up quite high at the rear now, hoping it will drop down a bit when the body goes back on.


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Made up some new cables for the battery/starter.  The outer cover came up good when re-plated but a couple of the end fittings were missing.  Not sure what they are for - I guess they are just insulators - the original ones looked a bit like bakelite - I made a couple of new ones out of wood which should be OK.


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Details of the engine rebuild.  Finally got all the parts back from the machine shop - after well over a year!!

Parts from the machine shop:

Head skimmed and cc'd.  Block cleaned, re-sleeved back to standard, skimmed, valve seats re-cut, guides lined, crack tested and pressure tested.  Crankshaft reground and balanced with flywheel.  All bearings re-white metaled.  Valves re-profiled.  New Exhaust valves and pistons.



Head, Block and front covers cleaned and painted - thanks to Matt.  Block took some serious cleaning - was de-greased and power washed prior going to the engine builder, engine builder 'hot tanked' it, then I de-greased and power washed again.  Still had crud in the oil galleries/reservoirs so made up a 'U' shaped tube to fit to the air line to get into the reservoirs - combined with lots of carb cleaner this seemed to shift all the dirt.  Some long Moroso bottle brushes were perfect for cleaning the main oil gallery.


Machined the valve spring holders to get rid of the retaining pin wear grooves 


Opened up the rod oil holes with a countersink to provide a slightly larger area for collecting the oil.



Added a chamfer to all the bearing shells - provides an additional oil reservoir as well as allowing any debri to collect away from the bearing surface, also stops the 'sharp' edge acting as an oil 'wiper'


All the parts cleaned and ready for the rebuild.



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First step - engine bolted to the rear mount then fitted to stand.  Used thread sealer on the two bolts that go through to the crankcase to reduce likelihood of oil leaks.


Fitted rear oil gallery blanking plug (square head) and crankshaft rear bearing upper oil retainer with thin gasket.  Ensure face of retainer is level with block face to help get a good seal with the sump gasket.  Use thread sealer on all threads.


Fit camshaft and crankshaft bearings and shims


Fit crankshaft and caps.  Check bearing shims are aligned (even clearance to crank journals) and tighten nuts.  Tighten progressively to 60 ftlbs (that's what mine were line bored at).  Keep checking it's free as you go - mine could be turned by hand.


Fit split pins to the main bearing nuts.


Fitted oil pump and oil pressure relief valve


Fit cam followers - I chose to do these before fitting the pistons as it's easier to turn the engine over before the pistons are fitted.


Fitted valves and springs.  Valves adjusted to 0.007" Inlet and 0.008" Exhaust.


Tappet covers fitted


Fitting Pistons.  Gaps for the 4 rings evenly spaced and away from thrust face.  Big end nuts tightened gradually to 45 ftlbs.


Split pins fitted to all the big end nuts.


Fitted rear bearing oil seal felt and sump gaskets. Seal and gaskets 'glued' to block with sealer.  Pay attention to the gasket around the rear bearing oil retainer as this needs to be trimmed to ensure no overhang into the cavity otherwise this will result in oil leaks.


Fit flywheel bolts to crankshaft - this needs to be done before the sump is fitted - can't be done after (guess how I know). Note gasket shape around oil flinger.


Fitted sump - note to ensure the front flange is level with the front face of the block.  Use sealer on the front bolts as they protrude into the crankcase.


Made new felt seal for flywheel lower cover and fitted.


Fit intermediate front cover, camshaft gear (note thrust washer goes on first) and crankshaft gear.  Ensure sufficient amount of sealer between the cover and the joint between sump and crankcase as it's not a great fit here.


Fit timing chain - note generator needs to be fitted to be fitted to hold the gear and tension the chain.  Fit oil throw out cup to crankshaft and spring loaded plunger to cam shaft.  Check that generator gear oil feed tube is clear and aligned correctly with the reservoir in the gear support housing.


Fit front cover and crankshaft pulley.  Use thread sealer on all bolts that pass through to the internal crankcase cavity to reduce chance of leaks.  Fit generator gear cover ensuring spring and plunger are fitted to the cover first.


Fitted head studs - use stud lock to stop studs turning and seal into the water jackets. Check head gasket fits correctly


Fitted water pump and connected to generator and installed manifold studs - use thread lock on all studs to prevent unintended removal and stop leaks as they all go through the water jacket.


Fitted starter motor, oil pressure union, timing cover, filler cap and dipstick


Ensure brass ring (distributor shaft bush) is fitted to block and fit distributor drive shaft - note that this only fits in one direction so check it is correctly engaged in oil pump drive.


Fitting head


Fit horn, vacuum tank and vacuum pipe clip (rear stud) and tighten head nuts.  Tighten progressively, starting with centre nut and use a circular pattern.  Leave time between each tightening step for gasket to settle - final tightening to be completed after first run.  Distributor can be fitted - checking the drive engages correctly with the shaft (only goes one way) and fit the retaining stud and lock nut (tighten lightly then back off to ensure distributor can still advance/retard correctly).  



Next step - put it in the car.


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Engine back in the car and new plug leads made and plugs fitted.


Fan fitted


Exhaust and inlet manifold painted (baked in the BBQ much to my wife's pleasure) and bolted together also made a new manifold nut to suit.


Manifold and carburettor fitted and timing and throttle controls attached and adjusted.  


Flywheel fitted - don't forget to fit the spigot bearing into the crankshaft and add some grease to keep it lubricated.


Clutch pressure plate cleaned and joints greased.


Clutch assembly fitted to flywheel - used gearbox output shaft to set clutch alignment before tightening.


Adjusting pressure plate pre-load - set dimension to 1 5/16"


Vacuum and fuel feed tubes made and fitted.  Adjusted points gap to 0.030"and set timing to 12degrees (mark on flywheel) with timing in fully advanced position.  Fitted radiator, temporary coil and exhaust.  Filled with oil and primed oil using the oil pressure gauge outlet port (to pre-fill all the reservoirs).  All ready for initial start up




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Finishing of the gearbox.  I rebuilt it earlier but didn't have the input shaft (left with the engine builder) and also needed to replace the layshaft as it was very worn.


Gearbox fitted to bellhousing with clutch release bearing.  Note position of the two nuts and bolts with thick spacer on each side - these go diagonally opposite through the two hollow dowels.



Gearbox attached to engine


Filling with the thick stuff:)  Easier to do when the cover is off.



Handbrake assembly and UJ refitted


Cover and brake lever fitted - tried the clutch and it feels beautiful!!)  Almost too light!




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Fuel tank ready for fitting, thanks to Matt for the great paint job!


All the fittings and gauge ready to refit.





Ready for some petrol now:)

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Made up some new exhaust brackets to fit the new muffler, filed it with petrol and took it for a spin (we’ll just drove up our street). 












Edited by RichBad (see edit history)
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Richard the frame has come up very well and was what you heeded to get things in order , glad to see the car running , its a very good feeling at this stage to see all your work turn out so well ,it stands square on the springs , very good work Bob

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