Category: Model A Ford

A Guide To Tremec Manual Transmissions – Holley


Looking for a manual transmission but don’t know where to start? This handy guide to Tremec transmissions should help you out! From the OEM-sourced T-5 and T-56 transmissions, to the TKO and TKX transmissions you can buy today, this in-depth look at Tremec’s group of manual transmissions is designed to help you choose which gearbox is right for your project car.……

Timestamps: • 00:27

5-speed T-5 • 01:10

6-speed T-56 • 03:25

5-speed TKO • 04:52

5-speed TKX

First Wash in 91 Years: Ford Model A Found in Woods and Start Up! – Ammo NY


This is a 1929 Ford Model A that was turned into a Doodlebug Tractor. It was left in the woods over 8 years ago to rust in Connecticut. We found it in the woods behind a barn and pulled it out of the trees, bushes, prickers, and vines that had been growing on it over the years. Ted, the owner, pulled the spark plugs and fixed the transmission, and the 91 year old Ford started right up. Once out of the woods, he performed a quick tune-up and brought it to the AMMO Studio for a full detail and first wash in 91 years! This is one of my favorite restoration or “disaster” detailing videos I’ve ever cleaned. Such a privilege to preserve a piece of automotive history. Hope you enjoy the story. For a full list of products visit Thx for watching! -L

Contents 00:00 – Introduction 00:55 – Workshop 03:40 – Master Mechanic Ted 07:35 – Cranking Engine 09:25 – Larry Drives Doodlebug 10:40 – Extra Maintenance 13:40 – Tractor Built To Last 16:05 – Tractor Wash and Scrub 19:30 – Fluid Film Application 21:33 – Preservation Recap

Model-A 5-Speed Conversion – Laine Family


After driving my Model-A for a while with the stock 3-speed non-synchro transmission, it seemed like the car would be much more compatible with modern-day traffic if it had an overdrive gear. A company in Muncie Indiana, called Auto Restorations makes a kit for installing a Borg-Warner T5 transmission in a Model-A. The kit costs $895, and includes transmission adaptor, driveshaft, brake linkage changes, clutch disk, speedometer cable, etc. Presumably everything you need. After a call to get information (765 288-3291, they don’t have a web site) I ordered a kit.

The only thing you need to know before ordering is how many splines there are on the input shaft, so that you can get the proper clutch disk. The donor transmission comes from a Chevy S10 2WD pickup. These T5 transmissions are unique in that they have the shifter placed further forward than a standard T5. Even though the shifter is further forward, it still is about six inches rear of the original Model-A shifter once the conversion is done. T5 transmissions are synchromesh in all gears and high gear is 0.72:1, a nice 38% reduction of RPMs while cruising. My transmission had the 14-spline input, but some of these T5s have a different spline count. I believe all have a standard 27-spline output. I found a transmission at the local Pull-A-Part for about $70 including tax and the core-charge. They aren’t very difficult to pull out, but I did donate a nice socket to inside the frame of the donor vehicle while I was taking off the cross brace. Here’s what it looks like:

The kit arrived, well packaged, in two boxes. Many of the parts were primed in red oxide. I though that it would have been a nice touch if the supplier had powder-coated them, and I considered doing that myself, but decided instead to paint everything in black prior to installation. In retrospect, I’m glad that I didn’t powder-coat them, since several parts needed to be modified.

Instructions are included, but they are pretty sketchy and in unusual order. I suspect that no word processing was used so that modifying and updating the instructions had long ago ceased. They do include some good pictures and drawings though, that I found to be very helpful. I didn’t have any idea if this was going to be a half-day or week-long job. As it turns out, the latter was the closest guess. If you want to see the instructions that come with the kit, here’s a copy…T5 Installation Instructions.pdf

First thing I did was to modify the transmission. This involves cutting off a tab behind the shifter and drilling a hole below the shifter to accommodate two thick steel plates that bolt to the rear of the transmission. These plates are the new support for the rear control arms connecting to the axle. As was going to be typical in this job, the plate on one side had to be machined to fit the transmission, and the spacers from the kit weren’t quite the right size, so I ended up making new ones. Also, the hole in the T5 needs to be bored to a larger size to work with the kit.

The next step was to start disassembling the car. This involves unbolting the rear spring, brake rods, and shock absorbers from the car so that differential can be lowered and moved back to remove the torque tube. Here’s one step in the instructions: “Go to the back of the transmission and remove six bolts holding the torque tube. At the differential this torque tube should release so it can be taken down. If not, you may have to persuade it.”

Those two sentences turned into hours and hours of work. As it turns out, removing the torque tube at the rear involves pulling the pinion bearings (complete with races) from the differential. After several hours of unsuccessful persuasion, I found a note tacked onto the end of the instructions about how to use a disk and some studs included with the kit to help. Finally, success! Here it is at work:

Once the torque tube is out, the transmission can be removed. It’s not a bad time to also take out the brake linkage since it will all be modified anyway later on. When the transmission is out, the new clutch disk can be installed, using the existing pressure plate. The instructions tell you that you need to get an alignment tool, but they actually included a decent plastic tool for this purpose. The kit also doesn’t mention, but includes a new pilot bushing that slips into the existing flywheel bushing, and extends it out and to the correct diameter for the T5. Forgetting that would be something you would remember for a long time since it would require pulling out everything again. You can see it in this picture.

Read on

T5 Transmission Swapped into a 75 year old Ford Truck | Pt. 1


This week Davin tackles upgrading our 1946 Ford truck’s transmission. This was a truck assembled in 4 days on the grounds of the Hershey Swap meet in 2015 and ever since the plan has been to upgrade to a T5. Well, six years later Davin finally found the time. Watch along as we take you through the process. We’ll show you what it takes to do an upgrade like this, and worse case you might learn what not to do..

Why the death of the stick shift is almost irrelevant to the classic car scene – David Conwill @Hemmings


For 1935, Ford offered customers “effortless driving.” Today, that clutch pedal is just too much work for the average new-car buyer.

I hear somebody, maybe Volkswagen, has announced the end of manual transmissions—with other manufacturers almost certain to follow suit. Honestly, I don’t care much.

Any development on new cars is only of peripheral interest to me. I’ll likely never buy a new car. If I did, it would be some kind of roomy, economical family hauler—not a sports machine (the kind my colleague Mark McCourt insists need three pedals). The manual transmission has been extinct in family vehicles for a long while now. I’d much rather spend my money on something like a 1940s De Soto Suburban anyway.

The newest car I’ve personally owned was the 1993 Ford Escort I had from 2001 to 2009. I replaced it with a ’61 Ford Falcon and have largely tried to stick with stuff of ’60s or older vintage ever since. Largely, I’ve also sought out manual transmissions in these older vehicles, though my current car (foreseeably a long-term keeper) has a Powerglide automatic.

Henry Ford II said it himself, way back in 1970: “I think the glamour of the automobile is decreasing… People are looking at it now as a machine to get from place to place to do something else.”

Manual transmissions are like every other manual item of the 20th century that has been automated: air-fuel mixture, spark advance, heck, even staying in your own lane and not tailgating people. Satisfying to those of us that enjoy extracting fine control from a machine, but mostly just an irritation to the average new-car buyer who seems to view driving itself as a major inconvenience anymore. Expecting 21st century, multinational corporations to cater to the enthusiast is a pipe dream. Why not ask for access to their proprietary software while you’re at it?

Better to stick with old cars and create your own reality. They’re not going anywhere, barring draconian legislation that bans driver-operated vehicles from the roads. Even if gasoline goes away, enthusiasts have already started exploring dozens of ways to repower old cars.