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1922 Dodge 4 questions


Borough Essex
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A friend and I have dragged a 1922 Dodge 4 out of a shipping container, where it has sat for about 15 years. We will go through everything before trying to fire it up, but have some initial questions:

1) best source for owner's manual and service manual? (preferably online to print ourselves)

2) after we have taken the sump off and cleaned/inspected it, how much oil does it take? I believe it is 5-6 quarts. 

3) any Dodge 4 peculiarities we need to watch for? We are familiar with Oliver tractors and 1920s Hudsons/Essexes, but are keen to benefit from the wisdom of those who have been there and done that with Dodges of the era:)

 

Thanks in anticipation.

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Contact the AACA library for a copy of your manual. It's only a few dollars. The DB Club stores our literature there. If you go to the DBC website you can determine which manual you need. First with the serial number determine what month it was built. Then, you want the manual printed RIGHT before your car was built. For some years there are as many as 4 different manuals. DBs did not wait to change at year end. If they decided something was better they changed at any time. When there were significant changes they printed a new manual. For example, your car COULD be positive or negative ground, that was about when it was changed. Rule of thumb is if the horn button is on the door it's negative and on the steering wheel it's positive. Yours COULD be the 15th edition. It will serve as a repair manual and have the amount of oil and how to check it, drive it, maintain it. There is a blue manual available many places, like ebay or book stores. Both Myers Early Dodge and Romar also sell it. They are your two main sources of parts.  BUT, this manual is very general, it's for all years of four cylinder DBs. And if you are not familiar with your specific car it will lead down a wrong road. The DB store, also has a website, has reprints of specific things like vacuum tanks and carbs. Sounds like you are headed in the right direction, asking first.

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Borough Essex, I also have a 1922 model.  There are two series of 1922 DBs: early and late.  The model changeover occurred in July of 1922.  The late series '22 is quite recognizable because it has a taller radiator and cowl than the early series had.  Here are some references you might want to obtain:

 

"Book of Information - Dodge Brothers Motor Vehicles" - the factory instruction manual.  Lots of theory of operation and repair information.  I am not aware of any reprints, but it is available on eBay.  Try to get one for, or close to, your model year.

 

"Mechanics' Instruction Manual - Dodge Brothers Motor Cars and Graham Brothers Trucks" - factory publication, reprints available.

 

"The Brothers Dodge" - Automobile Quarterly, First Quarter, 1979.

 

"Dodge Brothers - 'Good Enough' is Not Acceptable" - series by Don Butler in three installments in Cars and Parts magazine during the Spring and Summer of 1979.

 

Charles K. Hyde, "The Dodge Brothers: The Men, The Motor Cars and The Legacy", Chapter 6: "Dodge Brothers under Frederick J. Haynes, 1920-1925"

 

 

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The motor number is not the serial number, just so you know. The serial number should be on the frame cross member just under the floor board on the right side under your heel. There might be a tag on the front floorboards also. The master parts list is also a great way to find what is needed/correct for your car. Dodge did not go by month and year, they listed when a change was made by the cars serial numbers.

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Oil level can be checked by looking on the left side (sitting in car, facing forward) of the block towards the front.  There is a float in the oil pan attached to an 1/8" diameter rod that comes up through a hole in the block.  There are two markers cast into the block and the tip of the rod should be between those markers.  5 - 5.5 quarts does it for mine (a '25).  These cars use a combined starter/generator (left side of block).   There should be a fuse on the top front of it that is (if memory serves) 10 amp.  It might be a good idea to check that the starter/gen chain isn't too loose before running it.  There is a corner cap on the chain housing that is easily unbolted and allows inspection of the chain.  If the chain comes off the gears or breaks while running, it can do some damage.  The ignition system is good old breaker points and single coil.  If for some reason the starter won't crank, it easy to just 'hot wire' a 12 V battery to the coil and run it off the battery and hand crank for testing purposes (but pull the S/G fuse if you do that).   If the coil is bad you can use a 'modern' 12V coil (repro coils are available too).  They also use a vacuum tank to suck fuel from the tank.  Some people have retrofitted an electric fuel pump to fix a non-functional vacuum tank.  If this is the case, you want to make sure it delivers low pressure (under 2 psi, iirc) or it will tend to push past the needle valve in the carb and flood things.  Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Edited by MikeC5 (see edit history)
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  • 2 months later...

Most grateful for the advice above and we have procured a copy of the manual and are studying it thoroughly; I must admit it is better written than the equivalent Hudson/Essex  manuals. We found a box of bits which came with the car; it needs some wiring work etc and we are making slow progress. I can confirm neither a Hudson or Essex crankhandle fits, which is a bit of a bummer:) Rolled it out of the shed for a picture recently. 

1922 Dodge IMAG2039.jpg

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  • 3 months later...
  • 1 year later...
On 8/10/2021 at 11:03 PM, alsfarms said:

Looks like a late 1922.  Probably more refinements than the early 1922, different rear end configuration also that is looked at as an improvement over the early design.  How is your dash?

Sorry I didn't see your comment until just now but appreciate the information.

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A note on the reproduction service manuals. The small blue paper versions available everywhere has the same information as the larger format plasticized page manual sold by the dodge brothers club. The images are much more clear in the version the club sells and when using it in the shop you can wipe grease off the pages…. Twice the cost but in my opinion worth it. 
 

Welcome to the world of Dodge Brothers. You will be very pleased with the quality of the car and the club support available. 

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The top of the float pin should be about half way between the marks.

Push the pin down with your finger, if it bobs back up then all good.

I would use the book settings to get it goung and adjust for optimum running, you have done this and by the sound of it 49 MPH is very good.

I would prefer to drive it a little slower but understand your “main road” concerns.

Sooty exhaust? The old girl is 100. At least you won’t burn a valve due to being too lean.

No mental health professional required just a long drive on empty country roads with a few like minded friends.

 

9A84610C-9EBE-4E31-8A28-95EDAEAAE3ED.jpeg.8944c18099547d8dcb4a9d2bbebf5c45.jpeg

 

😊👍Nige.

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All 4 cylinder DBs hold 5 quarts of oil. The reason your rod may not go to the top mark, which all blocks have, is there was a topper that is missing. Very few engines have them on. The early ones were aluminum and threaded onto the rod. Later they were stamped steel and may have been pressed on. I was told by someone I believe that mid 20's had a plastic one pressed in place but I have never seen one. Drain the oil and put 5 quarts back in and put your own mark on the block at the top of the rod as a reference. 

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If I may express my humble opinion, I think you will obtain the greatest satisfaction from repairing and driving your DB if you get the fuel vacuum tank working correctly and use the original carburetor, repairing it as necessary.  Once you start replacing the OE parts with more modern items, where do you stop?

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23 hours ago, nearchoclatetown said:

All 4 cylinder DBs hold 5 quarts of oil. The reason your rod may not go to the top mark, which all blocks have, is there was a topper that is missing. Very few engines have them on. The early ones were aluminum and threaded onto the rod. Later they were stamped steel and may have been pressed on. I was told by someone I believe that mid 20's had a plastic one pressed in place but I have never seen one. Drain the oil and put 5 quarts back in and put your own mark on the block at the top of the rod as a reference. 

Thank you for the information on the bosses/marks, I went out and did a better closer look at the blocks I have and found them. I did spend some time looking at the 1915-1927 Master parts list, found the illustration of the floats but could not find them in the parts listing. Except for a grommet, I did not see any extensions illustrated. If I can find them (floats) in the listing maybe there will be a clue there. What I did was add a quart of oil at a time and marked were the rod came too using a paint pen. 

 

Found the floats, they are listed under NOZZLE. I think what I thought was a grommet, is really a button you would have screwed on the end of the shaft on early cars. It and the old-style float were no longer listed. 

Edited by Mark Gregush (see edit history)
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The button actually looks like a disc 1/2 inch or 5/8 round with a small shaft underneath that is drilled and threaded. I have at least one real one plus the ones I have had cast.  The early ones are cast aluminum, later stamped steel. They have a thread I have not been able to duplicate, size doesn't show up in the Machinist's Handbook. The steel ones may just press on the shaft. I am sure many are laying along the road somewhere. 

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Early in this case being, best guess looking at the MPL, before the introduction of the pressed steel pan in early 1916 (about car number 74388). The early style with button, was no longer listed and newer style looks to have been in-service replacement being used in all cars made up to around car number A707560 (after around July 1926). 

Yes, sometimes the early cars did have some differences from standard, few examples; Ford Model T; the screws that held the Bendix cover on and bolts/studs that held the pinion bearing housing on, both are close but are what one might call and interference pitch and require different taps. Another is the Chevrolet 1928 back 4-cylinder head bolts, they were a common thread back then but not so much this side of the pond now, being 1/2-12 not the more common now 1/2-13. 

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Regarding the exhaust colour, I think you will find that light gray to white is a thing of the past.  This is residue of lead oxide after fast running.  Unleaded fuel will always leave a black exhaust.  I found that the original instructions do not work with less volatile modern fuels.  You need something between a cloud of black smoke and popping on the overrun obtained by trial and error.  The result should be around 18 miles per (imperial) gallon.

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