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James_Douglas last won the day on August 3

James_Douglas had the most liked content!


About James_Douglas

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    Guru, have been a long time contributor

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    I am just a geek who likes old cars. We drive a 1947 Desoto Suburban as our daily driver.
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  • My Project Cars


  • Location
    San Francisco
  • Interests
    Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

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  1. I am planning on using a serpentine belt. I also will be using the Clark Electric Water pump so that I can run the pulley to the compressor to a big alternator with an idle wheel. A radiator fan on the inside, with two fans or perhaps 4 fans. That way if one goes, I still have some cooling. The electric water pump is a very good idea as it will maintain flow no matter what the engine speed is. I should have it all mocked up by Christmas. I would not mind some good shots of the A/C mounting bracket. James
  2. I got a set from Eaton Detroit Spring for my 1947 Desoto. They are working fine. They had the prints for both the normal spring and the heavy duty spring. I went with HD springs. I will also be ordering a new set of coils for the front of the '49 soon from them. James
  3. Marc, All my parts are 80 miles away in my place out of town... Do you still have your lower control arm pivot bar and bushings handy? If so, could I get you to do something for me? Stick one of the bushings in a bench vise. Then screw in the pivot bar about half way into it. Mark with a ruler the distance to any fixed point like the rear of the busing in the vise or the side of the vice. Then turn the pivot bar one complete turn into the bushing and measures how much it moved into the bushing. The do a second turn and measure and then a third. What I want to know is how much does the pivot bar move per one turn. Three turns dived by the distance will give an average per turn to see if it is even. What I want to do in the next month or two is to see if I can screw in my lower control arms on the 1949 Desoto CV to move the lower control arms forward relative to the upper. I did not have the tool when I did mine, so I mocked up a board and steel with holes to make sure I got it centered. What I want to do now is to UN-center it to give it more Caster so that I can bring the eccentric adjuster back to something more centered in the upper control arm. I had to move them all the way back to get my -0.5 and -1 Caster. The question is how much movement does one get for one turn on that pivot. With measurements and some math I may be able to get a good guess as to how many turns I need to increase the castor. Thanks, James
  4. FYI Frank, or rather his old company since he is long dead, has three of those supports. https://www.ebay.com/itm/1941-1950-Plymouth-Dodge-DeSoto-Chrysler-STEERING-KNUCKLE-SUPPORT-NOS-MoPar-/402293513426 I would double check my master parts books and talk with them to confirm then buy a set.. On my 1949, I had to replace one as it had a slight tweak in it and that would toss out the alignment no matter what. One big pot hole can do that on the supports. James.
  5. The forging numbers sometimes match the MOPAR part numbers and sometimes not. I have also seen forging numbers that were close but not exactly the same as those in my Hollander Interchange. The Hollander shows for 1941 to 1950 Plymouth as: 856164 Right and Left or 1119642 Right and 1119643 Left. I would hunt on ebay for a NOS support and if you can find one that is tagged with the correct MOPAR part number...see if you can cross reference its forging number. I would also buy it so I could check it against what you have on the car. One should take a good long time to run this down as if there is a mix and match in these parts the front end alignment may not come out correct. As a last resort, I would get a NOS support and a NOS Spindle that you can confirm is in fact correct and take measurements from them and apply them to what you have. A good machine shop could open up the support hole to match the NOS parts you ran down. Then you can move forward and have a set of spares should you every need them. In particular if it is one of the 856164 supports that are same for left and right. James
  6. The bearings show up all the time on ebay. Just find some numbers and go hunting. James. Also, as far as I can tell, the desoto and chrysler king pin kits, for the NOT LWB cars are the same just locate a kit with uppers that have bearings. James
  7. Ok, If the hole in the Support is too small, then something is really wrong. What are the numbers cast into the support? James
  8. Oooohhhhh, You are talking about the TAPERED LOCKING PIN not the king pin. Somehow I missed that point. They are tapered with a flat spot and on one side they come out one way and on the other side they come out the other. Make sure you are measuring the correct end. I wrote in my Master parts book the following when I did the Big Desoto some 15 years ago: "Passenger side is driven from the rear and comes out the front" "Drivers side is driven out from the front and comes out the rear". That was 15 years ago. Someone may want to comments if it is different on things other than a DeSoto. These pins are a one way only pin with a slight tapper. They should start just fine and tighten up as they are driven home with a brass drift. James
  9. I am not so sure I agree with that. When I talked with both Flaming River and Unisteer... They said their racks are NOT for cars over 3500 pounds....makes me wonder...
  10. My 1947 Desoto steering as good or better than many modern cars. Of course the 139.5 inch wheelbase does not hurt... And like I said on the last test run, all the twitchy went away. I think it is a case of needing to test and "tune" and test and tune to get it dialed in. James.
  11. If one keeps an eye out on ebay... Some of the reamers for the king pins come with an adapter that is used to press the bushings out. NEVER hammer on a bushing or a spindle use a mandrel and if need by have a general machine shop make you one. I have then for both the 0.7xx size and the 0.9xx size. I also am using bearings in the upper as opposed to bushings. See my thread on the steering PITA on my 1949 Desoto... James.
  12. If you have a set of pins in the 0.9xxx range then you have a set that is for the MOPAR Large Wheelbase cars like my 1947 Desoto Suburban or the few Chrysler, Desoto, Plymouth and Dodge Limo's. Someone put the wrong parts into your box. Send it back. The 1946 to 1953 MOPAR all cars Master Parts Book show the "kit" as 933-435 for 1939 to 1954 Plymouth. Now that said, I have confirmed that the Parts Books have errors or omissions on the front end parts for 1949 and 1950. Remember that it was a late and by accounts rushed change from the warmed over 1942 models that 1946 to February 1949 models represent. They also changed things a lot for 1951. So in many ways information was played with fast and loose for the si months of actual 1949 production and the 12 months of 1950. I have confirmed that some spindles were used on 1949 and 1950 cars that are NOT in the master parts books. I suspect a running change or a supplier issue. Almost all but the LWB cars for MOPAR during those years used a king pin that was in the 0.7xxx size. One thing. I would strongly consider using torrington needle bearings in place of the bushing in the upper. It will steer MUCH nicer with them. See the attached old article. Note that the tool he made was for something other than a MOPAR so size a tool as appropriate. One note. The instructions in the sheets from MOPAR with the kits day to remove all end-ply using the shims on the thrust bearings. Do NOT do that. Make sure that you have between eight and ten thousands of end-play. I found a mid-1950's tech note on the subject. Binding was an issue. James King_Pin_Bearings.pdf
  13. I wanted to circle back and report on the full road test. I managed to get out of SF and up to the house and get the car off the rack and drive it a good distance. To recap. The car now has torrington needle bearings in the upper of the king pins in place of the bushings. I also managed to get -0.5 and -1 on the castor. The camber and toe are all within the published specifications. The car was taken down a two lane back country road, some of which was relatively new pavement and some of it was bumpy. At 55 MPH the car steered very straight and did not wander like it has been. It also self centered after a turn like one would expect. I then ran it down the Interstate on a very long straight stretch. I ran the car up to 70 MPH and the car did not twitch nor wander like it had. If I let go of the steering wheel, it is slowly drifting to the left, but it is not pulling to the left. One little finger on the wheel and it does not drift. I have the adjuster cam as far to the rear as they will go. I am sure it is probably binding on the upper control arm which is warned about in the service manual. I will need to pull them back a bit. What I am thinking I am going to do is to drop the lower control arms at the inner pivots. I will take the front bushing out of the control arms and turn the pivot bars clockwise (looking from the front of the car) one or two turns. This will screw the pivot bar deeper into the rear bushing. Then I will screw in the removed bushing. What this will do is shift the lower control arms forward causing more tilt of the king pins. This will increase the castor so that I can bring the adjuster cam closer to the center of the top control arm. There is a service note someplace that warns that if you do not use the miller tool that you can get the lower control arm pivot installed incorrectly and affect the castor. I am going to use that logic to try and get myself some more positive castor ability. Since the needle bearing and the about 1.5 more degrees of castor did the trick, I know I am on the right track to getting this car to steer good. I have kept all the other adjustments the same on purpose so that I can know what is going on. Once I can get both sides to -0.5 degrees castor and the cam about middle of the range between the two ends of the upper control arm...then I will play with the camber to deal with the slight drift to the left, make sure the steering box (all new parts) is dialed in with the spring scale for worm and roller and get the worm gear (steering wheel) perfectly centered on the high spot. This last item is going to take some work. It turns out that there are 3 published lengths for the drag link. I have confirmed that fact with Rare Parts. It seems there was some supply issues back in the day as 1949 was a late start model wise. I had set the tie rods to the exact same length as one is supposed to do with equal length tie rods...but the steering is a little off center. The "correct" answer is to set the drag link length so that the wheels are straight ahead with the tie rods at equal length. That is how this design is supposed to work. The problem is that for 1949 the drag link does not have adjustable ends. So I will either have to take careful measurements and have Rare Parts make me a drag link the correct length or I will have to set the tie rods to not equal lengths. That has implications for toe out on turns not being correct. Did I mention how much fun this is? Best, James.
  14. Anyone recently buy a new MIG or multipurpose welder? I really need to go get one, but I am torn between spending $3K for a Lincoln or Miller or $999 for a Harbor Freight... Thoughts? James
  15. Back when seat belts first came out there were instructions in the retrofit kids that specifically said to NOT install any belt to the frame in any way, but only to the body. James
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