One of the most popular carburetor choices used by Ford and Lincoln, as well as several other auto manufacturers, is the Stromberg two-barrel. The most desirable of these is the “97;” however, four other versions were also offered by Ford: the “L,” the “40,” the “48” and the “81.”
So what can they fit? There are a lot of aftermarket Edelbrock, Weiand and Offenhauser intake manifolds that will accommodate the 3-bolt Stromberg mounting base. Obviously, Ford flathead manifolds of the 1930s are their primary candidates. But the Slingshot manifold that was designed by Vic Edelbrock Sr. was just the beginning of intake and Stromberg configurations that have been offered over the last 60 years. Y-shaped manifolds are also available, allowing you to install two Strombergs on a single-barrel manifold. There are base plate adapters to convert a single-barrel manifold to the 3-bolt Stromberg 2-barrel and to adapt a four-barrel spread-bore manifold to accept dual 97s. Plus, there are 3 x 2 and 4 x 2, manifolds for 1953-’56 Chrysler Hemis and 1955-’86 small-block Chevys. You can even still find 6 x 2 manifolds for most Chevy engines. All of these manifolds are compatible with Strombergs as well as the Holley model 94, another 3-bolt two-barrel performance carb that was built by Holley and Chandler Grove for Ford, as an alternative to a Stromberg carburetor.
A few weekends ago, members of my club generously descended upon my garage for a big “thrash” to help me finish my 1931 Ford Model A/B bobtail speedster. When father-and-son Barnstormers VSC (“Vintage Speed Club”) members Brian and Matthew Cholerton arrived, they were towing my next project: a 1929 Ford Model A Tudor sedan. It came at just the right time, because it would prove a positive counterbalance to some unexpected setbacks with the speedster, validating the wisdom of having at least two vehicles to play with.
For almost as long as I had been working on the speedster, I had known that I also wanted a hot-rodded sedan, so when I discovered that Brian had one and that he was planning on selling, we quickly came to an agreement. He even very generously towed it the 200-plus miles from his home to mine. Though I wasn’t quite mentally or financially ready for it, there it was, exactly what I had been hoping for.
And what I had been hoping for was an affordable Model A Tudor in running condition with a serviceable body, but one that wasn’t rare or in such good condition that it would be a good candidate for restoration. As someone whose tendencies run toward preserving historical artifacts (rather than altering or even restoring them), I knew it would be a long time before I’d find one that fit the bill as well as this one did whenever I finally decided I was “ready” to buy one.
As far as this particular sedan goes, and 1929 Tudors in general, they are indeed special… because with 523,922 of them rolling out of Ford’s factories, they hold the record for the greatest number produced of any Model A in any body style for any year. So this means I don’t have to feel quite as bad about hot-rodding the A, at least from a rarity standpoint
In terms of condition, while it starts up, runs, and stops well, has a remarkably clean underside, and no significant dents or rust, it appears that the owner before Brian might have begun restoring the car but then lost interest and hastily put it back together for sale. So while a new correct “Cobra Long Grain” vinyl top had been installed, many other condition issues went partially or entirely unaddressed.
Most obvious of these: Its paint demonstrates a tendency to chip, its driver’s-side door is significantly out of alignment, and its interior is limited to only seat covers and door panels made from cardboard boxes upholstered in gray crushed velvet (crushed velvet?!). Behind those door panels, the metal window anti-rattlers–both bent, and for some reason at the same angle–had been loosely stashed and, along with one internal upright support with broken rivets, had been creating a significant racket when driving.
After 20 years of producing millions of Model T’s Ford had an inventory problem…a USED CAR Inventory Problem. Find out why Ford scrapped all these derelict beaters; and it wasn’t necessarily to get cheap scrap metal.
Sources: My Forty Years with Ford; Charles Sorenson (1956)
Bob runs us through the story of Lucky 17, his stunning Model A Speedster and puts it to use on a sub zero New Zealand winter morning! Film commissioned as part of Panhead Custom Ales’ custom can series. Check out the full range at http://www.panheadcustomales.com Subscribe to Hot Rod Revue for more tales of New Zealand’s rod and custom culture. And follow along on instagram and facebook for your daily dose!
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 http://www.ammonyc.com. 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
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