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  • Ahooga horn in trouble

    Somebody called himself a knucklehead. Well. here is another one. I have had problems with the horn on my 31 Tudor and have been taking the back cover of multiple times. The last time I guess I didn't tighten the screw enough since it come off while I was out driving. Yes, you guessed it, the cover came off and the car behind my ran it over making it into a flat piece of metal. So, here we go. Anyone with a working Ahooga horn willing to discuss a possible arrangement?

  • #2
    There are a few horn types used on the A's. It would be good to post the horn type that you have so that you'll end up with the right cover. There's also a 'Swap Meet Wanted' section that may give you some visibility.

    Comment


    • #3
      What I have is a Stewart Warner horn, but I have given up on getting it to work correctly. Not sure what is wrong, but nothing I have tried has changed the operation. A new horn is a little on the expensive side, but it might be the best bet, unless I find a used one at a reasonable price.

      Comment


      • #4
        How about telling us what it does or doesn't do and what you have done.

        Bob

        Comment


        • #5
          The original style rear cover screw has a shoulder so it can only be tightened up so far, but can be made tight. Many repo screws are threaded all the way to the head. This type stops you from getting a good torque on the fastener. Not really your whole problem, Just some screw info and a maybe of why the cover fell off


          Screw with shoulder

          3 ~ Tudor's
          Henry Ford said
          "It's all nuts and bolts"


          Mitch's Auto Service ctr

          Comment


          • #6
            I have had the horn apart several times, cleaned everything, oiled, adjusted, installed new gaskets, cleaned the motor and the brushes, adjusted, oiled, adjusted etc. The horn will sound good when adjusted and a few minutes later the motor doesn't move at all. Backing off the set screw will allow the motor to start turning (without sound) and moving the set screw forward will get the ahooga going again. This has baffled me for three years now and I am getting tired of it........

            Comment


            • JDupuis
              JDupuis commented
              Editing a comment
              I have one on the 29 that does the same thing. Have to constantly adjust the horn. Jeff

            • George Miller
              George Miller commented
              Editing a comment
              Sounds like a bad connection some where, or bad ground. try running a jumper wire, and a jumper on the ground.

          • #7
            Do you know how many amps its pulling when its running vs not moving?

            Comment


            • #8
              sounds like it doesnt have enough oomph. Might not have a good solid ground so its weak.

              Comment


              • #9
                Doesn't A&L make and sell just the cover by itself?

                Comment


                • #10
                  I may have a stewart warner horn cover with no home. Let me see what I got this weekend.

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    One of the early thoughts for the horn's misbehaving was weak ground, so I pulled the horn road out and cleaned the connection at the steering wheel end. I also added a separate ground wire from the steering column to make sure there was solid ground connection. Yes Tom, the cover for the horn is available from several suppliers, but with the function of the horn in question, it won't do me much good. SeaSlugs, I appreciate your offer of a horn cover, but I think this is the end of the road for the horn I have.
                    As unlikely as it sounds, I am wondering if the serrated disk is not at ninety degree to the axle. Since it catches and won't move unless I back off the set screw. The motor rotates at really good speed when the screw is backed off, adjust the screw- still working - stop and wouldn't you know it- won't start again.

                    Comment


                    • #12
                      When you say really good speed, does it nearly instantly spool up like a starter motor or does it take a bit to get going like a box fan? Should be nearly instantaneous. if its not it sounds like a sick cow. From your last line it sounds like it doesnt have enough oomph to overcome the initial drag.

                      You do have all the gaskets in place for the diaphragm correct? I have heard of the wedge on the diaphram on some repo discs (and im sure origonals its possible as well) the rivet can loosen up and it can rotate around, i thought i heard they may not be the correct wedge shape either (close but not exact). Might be your issue and causing a jam. Is the commutator nice square segments with well defined gaps? Ive had to clean out the gaps with a pick and magnifying glass before when the copper gets mushed over and take some emory paper to clean em up shiney. The times it stops it may be stopping on an area where 2 of the contacts have mushed together so its weak power wise till you rotate it off those segments. If the brushes are too short they can cause issues as well.

                      Ive seen the end of the motor shaft that your adjusting screw pushes on be worn from a pointy ball to a flat dome - this causes extra drag on the motor as well.

                      Might be a worn motor shaft that has a groove worn into the shaft from alot of use with no lube that catches until you release tension.

                      If the wavy disc on the motor shaft doesnt spin with 100% balance (like looking perpendicular to the disc its not wobbily like a bent car rim) it could be stopping on a high spot and dosnt have enough oomph to get thru it.

                      Im not saying you did/doing anything wrong just throwing out problem areas ive seen in the past that you may or may not have known about or checked.

                      Next time it jams up and wont work on the car can you apply 6V directly to the horn terminals and see what it does? Can you provide a pic of your commutator? I've brought some horns back from the dead before...
                      Last edited by SeaSlugs; 06-01-2018, 10:22 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #13
                        The brush holder is mounted by one screw with an insulating washer on each side of the motor frame. If all 4 insulating washers aren't in place for the 2 brush mounting screws, then the brush holder will short to the motor frame. The motor will still spin, but with less power, as one field is taken out of the circuit.

                        Measure voltage from a good ground to each horn terminal as you blow the horn. One terminal should show battery voltage, and the one going to the horn button should show 0 volts. If it shows 1 or 2 volts, then the horn button isn't making a good ground, or the wire has several broken strands, or too much grease on the light switch horn contact. You can use a jumper wire to ground that horn terminal to a head nut to check this out.

                        Comment


                        • SeaSlugs
                          SeaSlugs commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Also ive seen those so coated in grease, oil, copper shavings, and brush dust they conduct. They must be spic n span clean. I use carb cleaner but be aware it may eat the paint off the horn...Simple green and a tooth brush might work.

                      • #14
                        Here is a link to our horn technical thread

                        Tom has some diagnostic tips in there

                        https://www.vintagefordforum.com/for...8809-horn-info
                        3 ~ Tudor's
                        Henry Ford said
                        "It's all nuts and bolts"


                        Mitch's Auto Service ctr

                        Comment


                        • #15
                          Thank you for all your valuable input. I thought I had explored all possible ways the horn could be misbehaving, but now I know that I have more work to do. The checking will continue and thanks again for all good information!

                          Comment


                          • #16
                            I had similar horn issues. A direct jumper worked great, but switch was mostly miss vs hit even after cleaning all connections.
                            After adding a fuse block, I used one circuit for the horn with the button powering a relay. An added benefit of putting large loads on separate circuits is a short will not leave me stranded.

                            Comment


                            • #17
                              Have you taken the horn off your rig and attached it to a battery or a recharger to see if a direct connect will make it work the way it should? If it does work the way it should hooked directly to a battery, then you have a bad connection somewhere. This is just one way to see if it is horn problem or wiring problem.

                              Comment


                              • #18
                                Originally posted by Tudor31 View Post
                                Somebody called himself a knucklehead. Well. here is another one. I have had problems with the horn on my 31 Tudor and have been taking the back cover of multiple times. The last time I guess I didn't tighten the screw enough since it come off while I was out driving. Yes, you guessed it, the cover came off and the car behind my ran it over making it into a flat piece of metal. So, here we go. Anyone with a working Ahooga horn willing to discuss a possible arrangement?
                                Don't feel to bad. I had one of my horns fall completely off my rig. I was lucky-it just fell to the road, nobody behind so I was able to go back and pick it up. Just needed some new paint.

                                Comment


                                • #19
                                  Here is an update about the Ahooga horn repair. I started with Tom's suggestion to check the voltage when honking the horn and that checked out to 6.38V and 0V on the two lines. Next I pulled the horn apart completely and started to clean every component. The ratchet nut had been broken off and replaced with JB Weld so I had to drill the axle, tap it and attach a screw.

                                  Now came the search for problems following the suggestions in the posts above. First, it turned out that the brushes were too long and/or the brush springs too strong, putting too much pressure on the rotor. After filing off 1/8" on each brush, the rotor turned much better. Next step was the ratchet tension spring. Yes, the washer that goes under the spring was missing also adding pressure on the rotor. Very careful and complete cleaning of the diaphragm was also done. Assembled and connected and it works! The first time the horn has said Ahooga since I have had the car! Adjusting the ratchet screw perfected the sound and it works every time.

                                  This is called success and it could not have been done without you!! All I need now is the a motor cover that hasn't had a violent meeting with a car tire. Sea Slugs, if you have the Stewart Warner motor cover looking for a home, let's communicate.

                                  Comment


                                  • pAAt
                                    pAAt commented
                                    Editing a comment
                                    Great end to your story Tudor !! I like happy endings

                                  • Mitch
                                    Mitch commented
                                    Editing a comment
                                    That is fantastic

                                • #20
                                  I thought I had a stewart warner - turns out its a sparton horn cover...

                                  I have a spare stewart warner bell/trumpet with a small chip. I have 3 stewart warner horns but not sure what one I wanna use on my truck.

                                  I know origonal is best but for less than $10 for a repo cover you aint breakin the bank :P
                                  https://www.snydersantiqueauto.com/m...e=0&perpage=12
                                  Last edited by SeaSlugs; 06-05-2018, 09:54 PM.

                                  Comment


                                  • #21
                                    You are absolutely right. The bank will still be intact. Just thought I'd ask since you mentioned it.

                                    Comment

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