Gunsmoke

1931 Chrysler CD8 Roadster Project - Chassis rebuild

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After doing a test start on my '31 Chrysler CD8 engine, I've pulled it from the car and sent chassis for sandblasting. Chassis is very solid, straight, with some pitting in a few spots, will paint this week. Pulled off wheels & brake drums, and all miscellaneous brackets, lines etc. Next come axle assemblies, but will need some heat, all the U-bolt nuts are seized solidly after 90 years. I also got the bumpers sandblasted and epoxy primed. They were pretty rusty and bent, I'm undecided if I will eventually chrome them or finish in some other way. Steering box is excellent, no play and clum switch is perfect. When you disassemble a car like this you need a whole warehouse just to store the 1000's of parts.  

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Xclnt. I am looking forward to following your restoration. The CD is fairly similar to the Dodge Brothers DC, perhaps more similar to the DG.

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Update: Rolled the completed chassis out of garage today, after completing install of re-arced F/R springs. I also needed one "silent block" which the local spring shop was able to access and press into spring eye. Overall, lowered car by 1.375", will make for a better overall stance, yet not create a "modification" issue (only you and I will know). The driver side fender bracket was badly mis-aligned (2" hor and 3" vert), car had been hit pretty hard many years ago, so I had to make a template of opposite side and heat it in several places to get it close. I have the engine cleaned and taped for painting. I don't have on-site" sandblasting option, so cleaned the non-engine parts (front yoke, bell, tranny etc)and de-rusted as best I could and painted them with spray-on Tremclad semi-gloss. Intention is to now overcoat entire assembly with engine enamel grey, and then brush on correct Chrysler color from a custom mix prepared by the local specialty shop. This is a bit of an experiment, the greenish/blue/grey 1931 paint is not available in engine enamel here, and something close (from Hirsch) is not able to be imported into Canada. 

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4 hours ago, Gunsmoke said:

the greenish/blue/grey 1931 paint is not available in engine enamel here, and something close (from Hirsch) is not able to be imported into Canada. 

Same here. I had a colour swatch sent from Maine and matched it. But engine enamel? Only near the exhaust does it get hot.

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Hi Gunsmoke,

nice to see your car progressing. Just a word of caution on sandblasting. I see you had the rear axle blasted as a complete unit, you need to check that the sand has not gone past the seals and into the pinion and axle shaft bearings as the pressure from blasting will destroy the seals and bearings. 

 

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Thanks for the advice, I did leave the seals in place to minimize that potential issue and when I got it back I removed the outer seals and checked for any fine stuff that may have gotten past them, there was a small amount due to my own fault, when I removed the brake backing plate and re-installed the outer seal, I did not draw it up tight to the axle housing stub, a gap of perhaps 1/100" allowed a bit of fine dust in. I plan to remove the rear bearings to get at the inner seals and check the pinion seal in next while and will further check for any grit that may have got in there when I clean and repack the bearings. Only practical way I had to get chassis blasted was as a complete unit, and so not much else could have been done I suppose except leaving the brake backing plates and hubs on. Learn as you go!  

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After 2 days of cleaning and prep work, I have painted the engine/trans etc as well as a wide array of parts that came off it. Mentioned earlier that the 1931 Chrysler Blue/Green/Grey engine paint is not available so had this custom mixed based on paint remaining on transmission top cover. To make painting easier, I set engine on some wood blocks across chassis, plan to lower it in place later today. Transmission base/tower I think will eventually be over-coated in black, original appeared to be done that way from factory. BTW, I used the manifold gaskets covered with masking tape to cover mating area. Hopefully tape will come off them without pulling gasket material apart! May soak them in H2O before hand.   

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Gunsmoke....just a warning about fan blades. PLEASE check your fan REALLY close to look for fractures.

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Thanks K31 and dc-8d. Yesterday I dropped the engine/trans into the frame and spent several hours assembling some finished components, like pedals, e/brake, starter, generator, plug wiring harness, manifolds and driveshaft, and temporary install of fuel pump, rad shell, steering assembly and F/R bumpers. All of that was to take the "rolling chassis" to the local old car show a mile from here. Not very often people get to see the "bones" of these old cars. I'll also post pics of a couple of other 1930's cars that were at the show. Hope to put cowl/rear tub on chassis next week and take stock of what needs doing over the next few months.

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More of today's car show photos. Although I'm partial to pre-war cars, this '59 Galaxie 500 Convertible was stunning, perfect inside and out. The Essex is an all original 10,000 mile car, including exterior paint which has most of its original pinstripe. 2nd owner.

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