Wheels, Tires, Front-end Alignment, and more!
What a great picture! This 1955 Ford Customline Fordor Sedan is having its body mated with its frame. The details are good enough that you can see some of the options - Y Block 272 V8, Fordomatic, and a fresh-air heater! Yowsa! Not too bad for a Customline model. I snatched this archived photo not too long ago from a social media page. I wish I could find more, they sure are pretty neat to analyze.
Speaking of analyzing, take a look at these two photos above. Note that upper control arms have shims installed per the Ford specs concerning front end alignment. Yep, it was finally time to get this work completed this week. You may recall from earlier posts that I was having a difficult time finding a tire/alignment shop willing to work on a vehicle this old. I kept getting rejected or being quote outrageous prices. One place in town wanted $150 a wheel - Ouch!
Before I was going to get any alignment work done that morning, it was time to head to a local donut shop. Holtman's Donuts started in the 50s and they had just renovated. Fresh donuts every day and really good coffee! Their parking lot is not that big or I would expect that there would be "donut runs" and cruise-in's from time to time. They have a good location on a main route through town.
At any rate, I finally located an alignment shop, Quality Care Automotive here in Loveland, Ohio, and knew right away they could speak the language.
When I walked into the office, the shop foreman named Greg greeted me and of course he said that he recognized my car (I drive by this place quite often).
When I told him my name, he replied, "You're the carburetor guy!" and just smiled at me.
I grinned back at him and said, "How did you know?"
"Oh, we have our ways," said Greg. "Tony and Chris told us about you." (Tony and Chris own 60s model vehicles that they have serviced at this shop on occasion. Chris also has a beautiful Model T truck by the way. And come to find out, a fellow Y blocker who owns the Mercury pictured below also has his car serviced at this shop. Yep, I felt that this would be the right place.)
"Well, I guess that would be me," I confirmed, just shaking my head and laughing. "Can you help me get this bucket of bolts lined up?"
I dropped off the car that morning at 8 and right around 11:15 am my dear wife called me with a real sense of fear in her voice. "Someone stole your car!" Of course, I chuckled and let her know that the shop was taking a test drive. Greg and I had discussed the specs on the car that morning, but I was uncertain on what caster/camber angle to set the alignment. Even though I had brought in the pages from my shop manual, I told them to line it up for radials and modern day driving. Their man Ian did a great job. I enjoyed my test drive I took after getting the car back from them right after lunch, the car did handle very well - especially on the interstate.
While the summer has been busy even during the Coronavirus pandemic (I have actually had to travel quite frequently for ministry trips), the good part about being more active than normal has been bad for the old Ford because it has left little time for the summer projects I had set out to accomplish! I was able to have four bias ply tires mounted to four extra wheels I had lying around. (These were extra wheels that I rejected back a few months ago when I was trying to get a set together to prepare for wide white wall tires.) Would you believe that another shop in town, Tire Discounters, mounted them for free? Yep, no charge. Needless to say, I hooked them up with a dozen donuts from Holtman's the very next day.
Why have these wheels and tires mounted? I figured if there ever was a time I was working in the shop and needed to have a rough set just to roll the car, or maybe to mount a tire in the interim, or even to have a set for the next project, since the bias ply's were brand new and wheels available, why not? Certainly handy to have and I have almost nothing in this set - maybe $25 total at the most.
During one of my trips down south I was able to spend time with my dad who just recently had knee replacement surgery. (He is on track to have another replaced once the first one heals.) Of course, during the time we spent together we tracked down some Y block cores and other parts that a collector was wanting to offload. The location was roughly 45 minutes away but what a find!
I tried to deal on one of the tubs of parts to carry back with me, but the seller wanted to get rid of it all at one time - just one lot. I don't have the space right now and neither is there room in any of my dad's garages! And, it will be a while before I can get to him to make space in his garage and go through the parts he currently has anyway. Hopefully in October I can take care of all this and help this collector lighten his load. Remember I still have that 312 I am building up for the future.
One weekend with the wife just happened to include a trip to an antique store. One of the store's windows had this sign for all to see...
Inside, what did we find but a headlight clock! Take a look...
Hold up, wait a minute, let's check that price tag.
Wow! I am in the wrong line of work. The clock face was not even centered in the Plexiglas and my wife thought this piece did not look near as good as the ones I had turned out over the past few years. She thought my units would go for quite a bit of money when compared to this. I have no idea, and I am not really sure there is a market for them. This seller at the antique shop certainly thought so!
It has certainly been a strange year - who knew back when we started 2020 in January that such strange and tragic events would bring all of the chaos to our doorstep? My daughters are wondering whether or not college will offer classes like normal, and my son who will begin his senior year of high school is getting his school supplies together by faith. Everything seems so uncertain, the economy, education, the election, etc. While this life can be a veritable roller coaster ride, there is one surety that you can have - your eternal home. Are you ready to meet God? Have you ever considered why God should allow anyone into heaven? I hope you will take the time to visit the page on my website entitled "Remember" and that you will read the passages from the Bible. I am sure they will be a tremendous help to you!
Keeping the FaYth,
The Hot Rod Reverend
aka Daniel Jessup