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Old 10-08-2011, 10:16 PM   #1
CWH
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Default My '41 Ford COE

Thought I'd post some pics of my new project. It's a 1941 Ford COE also known as a cabover. Bought it in NC and had it trucked and shipped to AK this summer.



10500+ miles on the odometer. Has the original Flathead V8 and the non syncro 4 speed trans. Tires are old but hold air. I'd like to find some new highway type treads.





Got the truck in the garage to go throught the transmission. I believe that I scattered the clutch recently. That'll need replaced as well.



Lot's of leaks to identify and repair. Don't know much about the old flatheads so any advice is appreciated.

Thanks,

Chris
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Old 10-08-2011, 10:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Very cool!!
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:04 AM   #3
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Awesome truck. I love the old looks. Is this going to be a business work truck or a personal weekend cruiser?
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:35 AM   #4
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

sweet ride. huge fan of cabovers.

check out the H.A.M.B., lots of info and resources on vintage metal. You should be able to find answers for what you are looking for on there.

http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:29 AM   #5
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Talk to Shack, he's so old that his first "car" involved something that eats hay...
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

That's a sweet truck! I've always wanted something like that for a toy hauler!
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:21 AM   #7
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Love it! Ramp truck, or slideback with a COE is my dream toy hauler... Nice find!
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:30 PM   #8
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Thanks for the comments. It's been a 15-20 year dream of mine to own an old Ford COE of this vintage. I plan on painting it up as sort of a tribute truck for my Grandpa. He was a body man in PA and I was hoping make it a shop truck of sorts. Mainly it'll be a parade machine and bomb around town in it.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:54 PM   #9
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Speedway Motors and Honest Charlies both have a pretty good selection of Flathead stuff.
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Old 10-09-2011, 11:24 PM   #10
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

In case you don't know, COE stands for Cab Over Engine.

This is a nice Ford! There is someone in AK building a COE late 40's/early 50's Chevy CREW CAB! He was using a modern motorhome chassis. I talked to him on the slope 3-4 years ago. Gotta love Cab overs.

Nate, you're wrong, my first car was steam driven, thank you.

Is your truck transmission a T98 by any chance?

Flathead engines were relatively simple, two water pumps served as front motor mounts, some were prone to overheating, which usually cracked an exhaust valve seat, keep an eye on that. the fuel pumps were notoriously weak (pressure wise) and would usually develop a vapor lock condition with age, the common cure was to clip several clothes pins (do they even still make clothes pins?) on the fuel line between the fuel pump and carburetor, to act as a heat sink.

Is your truck still 6 volt?

If your truck has 20" wheels (stock) they will most likely be split rims and unless you want to pay $50 to mount a tire or fix a flat, I'd consider changing them to 19.5 motorhome wheels (UGH) or 22.5 truch wheels for more abundant tire size and choices. 20" tires are getting a little difficult to find and expensive, at least to me, I have 20" on my dumptruck and will change them as soon as I find a set of 22.5's.

I'm here to help if I can, Good luck, Shack
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Old 10-09-2011, 11:50 PM   #11
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Shack, bring me your 20" wheels and I'll change tires for yah for a 12 pack per wheel, much cheaper then 50.00 bucks a wheel lol
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Old 10-10-2011, 12:07 AM   #12
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

corker tires still make the original tires for your truck i had a 48 f5 ..

there is a guy here in north pole who has been rebuilding gmc cabovers one i see alot is a slammed wrecker dually thats pearl white and sexy as hell the other is a roll back ..

today i saw a smaller cab over cement mixer all dressed up on Van horn .

very clean truck nice find ..
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Old 10-10-2011, 12:32 AM   #13
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Yellowk20.

The only flat I've had I went to three different tire shops, ended up at Diversified. after waiting one hour past the promised time I went to check on my tire, the counter person took me out to their tire cage to check on the status. The shop manager? came out and chewed me out in front of his employees for being there and informed me he "Was doing me a personal favor even fixing the flat"

Needless to say I won't go back to Diversified,

Thx for the offer, Shack
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Old 10-10-2011, 12:39 AM   #14
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

wow thats sucks, Is it a "split rim" or just a multi piece rim like a normal Semi-wheel
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Old 10-10-2011, 02:06 AM   #15
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

I've heard the referred to as both so I don't know. The rim halves come apart under the tire, between the tire beads. Supposed to be "extremely dangerous" thats why the cage is required.
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Old 10-10-2011, 06:19 AM   #16
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

The truck still has the original split rims. I'd like to keep it all stock looking. Tires are expensive for this truck but it'll be worth it.

That red GMC coe cement mixer on Van Horn is awesome. I'd rock that thing all over town. Seems like a nice restoration.

The second owner of the truck must have gotten confused with the positive ground system and smoked much of the wiring. Currently it runs on a 12v batt and has minimal wiring just for starting and a tail light. I'm going to have the original generator rebuilt to 12v and rewire the truck to run on a 12v system.

The truck has the original 4 speed non syncro trans. Not sure of the T98 designation.
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Old 10-10-2011, 08:08 AM   #17
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Where in NC did you get this thing?
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Old 10-10-2011, 09:00 AM   #18
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Where in NC did you get this thing?
Hendersonville North Carolina. Found it on some goofy online classifieds. It seemed like kind of a spam post until I called the guy. It was originally purchased by the town of Pulaski Virginia and was a water truck from 42 to 78 when it was sold off. I have the original title.
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Old 10-10-2011, 10:15 AM   #19
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

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I've heard the referred to as both so I don't know. The rim halves come apart under the tire, between the tire beads. Supposed to be "extremely dangerous" thats why the cage is required.



Yeah they are , I retract my previous offer sorry I'm surprised diversified did them at all most places won't touch them. Still doesn't excuse the managers actions though.


When I was 16 I had one of those wheels come apart while inflating a low tire on the truck .

I was using a clip on airchuck and was standing back about 3ft to the side but even still it knocked me on my butt.


CWH, there are a few companies out there offer wheels that look just like originals but are not split rims those things can fly apart for no reason at all. I've heard of guys dropping them out of the back of a pickup and having them separate .
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Old 10-10-2011, 11:28 AM   #20
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Safety was my primary reason for looking at replacing the wheels and tires, tire availability was second, and third when you say I have a flat on a 20" truck wheels, tire shops automatically assume it is a split rim and refuse, without looking at the wheel. Not all 20" truck wheels are split rims, for instance Alcoas......

I'd suggest TK Services on Peterburg in Anchorage for the generator work.
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Old 10-10-2011, 01:54 PM   #21
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

I've actually called around a bit for tires. There are several places in Anchorage that don't seem to have a problem mounting tires on the split rim. My plan is to have the wheels powder coated and mount up new tires.

I've been involved mounting up tires on split rims quite a bit. It's really not that big a deal if you know what your doing and you take the required precautions.
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Old 10-10-2011, 11:10 PM   #22
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

CWH,
Come on over, Pal LOL
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Old 10-12-2011, 12:41 PM   #23
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

I've some knowledge of flatheads, helped build a few in my day. The hardest part and biggest difference in a flathead is setting the correct valve lash, I'm still not good at that in those engines. Speaking of valves, do you know if it's had hardened seats installed in it?

They like to leak, there is no getting around that, it's called character.
The seals front and rear of the crank are most likely your biggest leakers, they are just a simple rope seal type arrangement. You can replace the front with a modern seal, which I'm not sure about but I think requires a sleeve put on the crank. The back one I think you are pretty much stuck with the rope seal still. Since you're going to have the tranny out that is the best time to replace that one, you can't do the top rope seal easily (if at all properly) with the transmission in place. K-D used to make a kit to "pull" the rope seal through the top, but I think that is just a "get just another six months out of this engine" type of temporary arrangement.

Good looking rig! The way it looks in the garage, low to the ground, makes me think it'd look good like that permanently. Low to the ground with some nice wheels tucked up in those fenderwells.
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:27 PM   #24
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddening View Post
I've some knowledge of flatheads, helped build a few in my day. The hardest part and biggest difference in a flathead is setting the correct valve lash, I'm still not good at that in those engines. Speaking of valves, do you know if it's had hardened seats installed in it?

They like to leak, there is no getting around that, it's called character.
The seals front and rear of the crank are most likely your biggest leakers, they are just a simple rope seal type arrangement. You can replace the front with a modern seal, which I'm not sure about but I think requires a sleeve put on the crank. The back one I think you are pretty much stuck with the rope seal still. Since you're going to have the tranny out that is the best time to replace that one, you can't do the top rope seal easily (if at all properly) with the transmission in place. K-D used to make a kit to "pull" the rope seal through the top, but I think that is just a "get just another six months out of this engine" type of temporary arrangement.

Good looking rig! The way it looks in the garage, low to the ground, makes me think it'd look good like that permanently. Low to the ground with some nice wheels tucked up in those fenderwells.
Thanks for the advice. My dad and I pulled the engine out today. I love that old truck. Everything unbolts and made the removal a snap.

That old flat head was caked with oil soaked mud. I think that's probably why it wasn't leaking too bad from the engine (or at least not making it to the pavement).

I seperated the trans from the engine and found the source of noise and lack of forward propultion. The springs on the clutch plate were laying in to bottom of the bellhousing. I also found a couple of chewed up gears inside the trans. The throwout bearing also has a little excessive play.

Funny you mentioned that it looks cool in setting low. I was thinking the same thing and have already checked out so see if an axle flop is feasable in the front. Jury's still out as I'm more concentrated on getting it back on the road for the Rondy Grand Parade.

cwh

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Last edited by CWH; 10-21-2011 at 05:10 AM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:55 PM   #25
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Default Re: My '41 Ford COE

Got my wheels powdercoated and some new bias ply's mounted up. Working on painting up the rear drums prior to bolting the wheels back up. Should have it all done by the weekend. The motor is all resealed and painted up ready to go back in. Still haven't gone through the transmission yet. I do have a nice set of used gears to throw back in the trans.

Chris



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