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  • Model A Service Call

    Got a call last night to come and see why the Model A won't start. Took my test light and touched the open point (key ON) and had no light. But wait, the owner says, I get 6 volts when I test. Well, the basic OFF-ON repro switch just passed enough voltage to move the meter needle, but not enough current to light my test light bulb. I had him blow the horn, so I knew the battery connections were fine, and I had a feeling the switch was bad. He has the thin armored cable, so that was easy to unscrew and check for voltage at the tip, and I found it wouldn't light my test light. He'll buy a new switch and use a temporary jumper to keep driving in the meantime.

    Sure wish my 31 Town Sedan looked as nice as his, and I'll bet he wished his 31 ran as nice as mine. His steering was too stiff, and the engine isn't as smooth as it should be. I think he might need plugs and carb work. He said he replaced one plug, but still needs to replace the other 3.

    1931 Town Sedan.JPG

  • #2
    I like slants !!! Had a 32 4 dr (basically same thing) when in the service along with my 32 coupe66-69, Newport, RI
    Paul in CT

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    • #3
      That is a good looking car. Why is the owner not on the VFF?
      Excellent diagnosis and write-up of the problem.
      Thanks for sharing. Jeff

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      • #4
        Thank's Tom. Great info and nice that you reached out. Chap

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        • #5
          That is a nice lookin' car! How about a photo of yours, Tom? Is it a survivor?

          Comment


          • Tom Wesenberg
            Tom Wesenberg commented
            Editing a comment
            Wish I had some pictures of my 31, but it's locked away quite a distance. It is just a fair survivor that I'll drive and not restore. The top needs to be replaced before I drive it. Mine is all black.
            Last edited by Tom Wesenberg; 07-11-2018, 10:54 PM.

        • #6
          Apple Green Wheels. Gotta love it.
          +++++++++++++++++++
          Jon.

          "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -Ben Franklin

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          • #7
            First Model A I worked on. It was my Dad's Slant. This photo was taken ~'64 He loved those Apple Green wheels
            Last edited by Jwmckenzie; 07-11-2018, 08:40 PM.
            +++++++++++++++++++
            Jon.

            "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -Ben Franklin

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            • #8
              Helping each other is what it’s all about.
              Good job Tom
              1~1931 Tudor ~ Dad
              2~1930 Tudor's ~ Lucy & Paul


              Henry Ford said
              "It's all nuts and bolts"


              Mitch's Auto Service ctr

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              • #9
                Thanks for the photo of that Slant Tom, sure makes me want one.

                I've run across a couple of cases in the past where a fault caused voltage to read on my DMM, but there wasn't enough current to run anything. That can be a tricky one for troubleshooting, but you're sure the right guy to be on it.

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                • #10
                  I forgot to mention something funny the owner told me as we test drove the car. He said he wanted to check the emergency brake, so he pulled it while driving 20 MPH. He said, "you don't want to do that. It left skid marks several feet long".

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                  • tbirdtbird
                    tbirdtbird commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Ford prolly said to test the ebrake that way since it distorts the hell out of the carrier and would generate a repair opportunity.

                    If you have ever seen a wracked e-brake carrier you know what I mean.
                    To me it is better used only as a parking brake.
                    If your service brakes are properly restored you will stop very quickly and nicely and can even skid the tires.
                    I had to do a panic stop at 25 MPH because a handicapped person on a wheelchair literally jumped in front of me from the curb. She appeared from nowhere from between 2 cars and never looked. If I were a tractor trailer she would have been toast.
                    I laid on the service brake for all I was worth and luckily stopped literally 2" from her. She never had any clue what she had done, even tho I was on the horn at the same time

                  • DaWizard
                    DaWizard commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I have seen and replaced the tab that holds the P-brake lining in the drum. I don't advocate ever using that handle as an emergency brake. I do however advocate driving more defensive and slower because we don't have disk brakes and stop on a dime.

                • #11
                  That’s how ford said to test. Except, pull slowly. Page 165 of the service bulletins, equalizing emergency brakes #7

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                  • #12
                    Originally posted by Chuck Sea/Tac View Post
                    That’s how ford said to test. Except, pull slowly. Page 165 of the service bulletins, equalizing emergency brakes #7
                    Something tells me that Ford didn't intend to have someone test the emergency brakes while verifying an electrical repair

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                    • #13
                      Hey Tom great story and picture, for me personally I would like to pick your brain on how you troubleshoot a No Start ? after verifing horn etc, did you go right to distributor? do you verify electricial before fuel? I would like to know your approach when confronted with a No Start . thanks Perry

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                      • Tom Wesenberg
                        Tom Wesenberg commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Yes, normally the first thing I do is hold the coil wire 1/4" from a head nut to check for spark. No spark, then I check for voltage at the points with the points open, and work my way back to the coil.

                        If I get spark, then I pull the choke and crank for a couple revs and look for fuel dripping out the carb.

                        First determine if the problem is electrical or fuel related, then don't replace any parts until it's determined the part is actually bad.

                      • Mitch
                        Mitch commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Same thing with checking a bulb that is not working. Start at the end of the juice and work back

                      • canadian
                        canadian commented
                        Editing a comment
                        great info Tom, as you say don't replace things until the cause is found and determined that a part is actually faulty . thanks again

                    • #14
                      Tom, how far do you travel for service calls? I live in North Carolina

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                      • Tom Wesenberg
                        Tom Wesenberg commented
                        Editing a comment
                        That would make a nice trip. Now, if my Studebaker only had air conditioning.

                    • #15
                      As usual Tom, good job ! Good man !!

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                      • #16
                        Wish my TS looked that good!
                        Terry

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                        • #17
                          Good to know, thanks for the tip.

                          And, that IS a nice car really sharp!

                          Comment


                          • #18
                            Ever find NO POWER, ANYWHERE & discover a burned out TEST LIGHT BULB?----Screwed up Joe, once, put a FLASHING bulb, in his test light!!! The're used as a warning light, on some tractors.
                            Dad Bastardguy

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                            • Mitch
                              Mitch commented
                              Editing a comment
                              HAHA that's why I always prove out the light first before using it

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