49 GMC Progress Report

Discussion in '1947-1954' started by e015475, Jun 20, 2015.

  1. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    When you finish weld these in, I would like some detailed photos, if you don't mind.
    I thought about using a bead roller to form strengthening ribs in these thin gauge fenders. What do you think?

    Steve.
     
  2. vwnate1

    vwnate1 Member

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    Wow ~ so much hard work and especially , PLANNING ! .

    I'm impressed , you alls always teach me new things .
     
  3. Elvin

    Elvin Member

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    Truck is looking good. Did your body shop make the transmission floor cover? I need something similar and was wondering where it came from.
    Thx, Dave.
     
  4. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Wyatt Tichenor of Tichneor Coachworks in Mesa AZ did the metalwork on this truck including the trans cover. He put the basic hump in it with a bag and a mallet then smoothed the lumps with an English wheel. The lip was formed on a bead roller. The engine in this truck has been moved back several inches so the stock cover didn't fit
     
  5. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    50 Chevy LS3

    You'd asked about the fit of the Camaro shorty headers - here's a few pics for you
    [​IMG]

    Here's a detail of the linkage hitting the collector
    [​IMG]
     
  6. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    Phil,
    I think those headers might just work for me. If I measured correctly, my engine mounting is just short of 4" forward of yours.

    100_5158.JPG 100_5157.JPG

    It appears to me, the brake arm might fit, without modification. My only concern is about the frame clearance for the collectors. Just looking at you picture, it looks like there would be enough room, plus, plenty of room for steering linkage for my Fatman R&P. Right now, I can only visualize this in my head, as the cab is back off my frame.

    I assume the right side has no clearance issues?

    Steve.
     
  7. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Steve-

    Here's a pic of the right side
    [​IMG]

    There's about a half inch clearance to the tube and the flange is down in the channel of the frame - If you boxed this area you might have a little trouble with clearance. As you'd guessed, my engine sits back about 3.5" from where it should so they'll be tighter on yours due to the taper of the frame rails as you move to the rear of the truck

    If you'd like to try them LMK and I'll sent them to you to see if they fit. PM me.

    Here's the latest iteration of mine. Tried sixteen ways from Sunday to get them to equal length, but I can't get them close to the same and stay inside the frame rail so I'll give that up in favor of making them fit. I'd considered going through the fender wells, but don't want to cut them up. Not enough 'header legos' in the ICE Engine kit I bought to model the whole thing on one side, so I guess I'll have to make the top part from mandrel tube, then scab the legos on to that to figure out how to get to to the collector. Steering shaft looks like it is going to fit nicely - joint is taped together while I wait for the u-joints to be delivered by the UPS guy.

    [​IMG]

    Steering column is out of a '59 Cadillac. Had the Cadillac shaft turned to 3/4" so I could fit a 'column saver' to support the shaft at the firewall side.

    Here's the steering column in the truck - ground out all the cracks and filled them, sawed off the auto trans shifter on the column and filled it then rebuilt the turn signal switch will all new wires. I'll paint it to match the interior of the truck.
    [​IMG]
    Some details on the column-
    [​IMG]
    Hoping it will looks something like this steering wheel when I'm done painting it (but in my truck's colors of course)

    [​IMG]
    Just for fun (well, more fun anyway)........ if its winter in Arizona, it must be dune season. Ran a junkyard LS1 with about 10psi of boost for about five seasons in our sand car- it finally gave up the ghost and spun a bearing. New bearings, big oil pump and a forged rotating assembly and should last the rest of my life! Rebuilt motor just stabbed into the chassis- hoping the kid comes over this weekend and helps me button it up.
    [​IMG]
     
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  8. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    Phil, thanks, but now I think I will run out of space on the right side.
    If I measured, and calculated correctly, the frame loses about 1/4" of width, each side, every 4".
    I did box the front with 3/16" steel, so, there goes almost 1/2".
    It looks to me, the left side has more space between header and frame. That seems odd, unless they are giving more space for the starter, on the right side.

    The steering wheel idea is going to look fantastic! Just right, for the 1950's dash.

    The sand car...where do I begin...I LOVE Jeeping and off-roading, and especially out west. Your speaking my language with that.
    I would like to see more of that.
    Makes me wonder what other cool things you've got going on.

    Steve.
     
  9. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Steve,

    Looks like you can to the same conclusion on the Camaro manifolds as I did - the flange is going to hit the frame rail if it's boxed.

    There may indeed be more space on the driver's side than the passenger side. I vaguely remember offsetting the motor to the passenger side when I built the motor mounts, anticipating issues getting the driver's side to fit around the steering shaft

    Thanks for the positive comments about the repurposed Cadillac wheel. Working on the truck is therapy for me, and whenever I can, I try to avoid buying off the shelf parts. Works good with my wife when she's talking about how much time I spend in the shop puttering around - I told here the Ididit column was over $5oo and I could fix this one up for $75. Same with the gauges. Had to talk pretty fast when it came to fabbing my own headers though. Wish I could have found an off the shelf solution - it's going to take a long time to make them

    On other topics.............

    My explanation on how I planned to do the mini-tubs in the bed was a little lacking in clarity - here's a picture of the angles I plan on running through the shrinking die to attach the tubs to the bedside -
    [​IMG]

    Most of my projects end up getting sold to finance or make room for the next one. I sold my V8 Jag XJS to make room for this truck. I learned to drive in an AD truck and nostalgia seems to drive a lot of my projects lately. My intention is to keep it for a driver as I transition into retirement, but you never know. The truck, the buggy and three house remodeling projects at the moment (mine and two kid's) - not all that interesting.

    My kids now have kids, and my son told me my granddaughter was old enough to go to the dunes - so taking a little detour from the AD truck
    at the moment to get it ready to go again for Christmas or New Years at the dunes. We're furloughed from work next week, so hopefully can work on both the truck and the buggy

    Here's a photo of it sitting in the Imperial Sand Dunes in California (just west of Yuma, AZ)
    [​IMG]

    Driving my BIL at the Imperial Dunes about 6mi south of Glamis, CA about this time a few years ago - 4 seats, chromoly chassis, about 24" of wheel travel front and rear, LS1 mid-engine, single Garrett turbo and weighs about 1750#. You'll be pleased to hear the only time I've every had a mechanical breakdown the best thing at towing me out of a deep bowl was a Jeep with paddles on all four wheels. More photos in my album if you're interested.

    Phil
     
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  10. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    Phil, thanks for the pics. of the dune car! I'm betting that turbocharged LS1 will really throw a rooster tail!
    The only dune-fun I've ever had was at Silver Lake, Michigan. It would be like playing in a playpen, compared to where you go. The one thing I remember that was startling about it was, blasting up one side as fast as I could go, only to find the other side "flagged". A near vertical drop, of about 30' waiting on the other side. Luckily, I had run out of speed by the top, and just slowly "broke over" it.
    I love the military aircraft theme to the side panels...Very Nice.

    Back on thread topic, if your engine is offset to the right, we might still be in business. Mine is set, centered, and yours appears to have more than 1/2" on the left side.

    If you have given-up on tuned headers, Sanderson sells two different headers supposedly built for AD trucks, with LS engines. One is a block hugger, the other a "shorty", I guess you would call it. Here's a pic. of the "shorty".
    ls150_600.jpg
    This is what I was about convinced to order. Possibly in plain steel, and then if they work, have them coated locally.

    Steve.
     
  11. Lakeroadster

    Lakeroadster Member

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    Good thinking... then if modifications are made those can be done before coating.

    _____
    John
     
  12. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Well, hears another possibility to consider for the LS swappers.............

    Was at the car parts swap meet yesterday and a friend who sells there and specializes in LS motors had these shorty headers. They are the Chinese headers off of ebay - he said take them home and see if they fit. So here they are - he sells them for $60 (this isn't an offer to sell, just a price point reference)
    [​IMG]

    Here's the view more forward so you can see what the steering shaft relationship to the headers is-
    [​IMG]
    If the steering shaft projected further forward it would hit the second tube of the headers. These look like they would work with a three ujoint steering setup, at least on my truck. There's over an inch of space between the frame and the flange. They are not symmetrical so you could trade right to left and get the discharge to move fore and aft a little.

    They appear to be 1 5/8" tube rather than 1 3/4" like the Pacesetter Camaro headers. I don't think I'd want them on a 6L but would probably be ok on a smaller LS motor. The welds inside the block flanges are pretty atrocious so you might have to patch them a little and hit them with the die grinder. As Lakeroadster suggests, you'd do well to buy it raw and modify it to suit your truck. If I were to keep them and use them, I'd cut off the three bolt flange and weld on an extension with a Marmon flange so I could v-band the downpipe on to the header.

    The smaller diameter and the three u-joint linkage discouraged me from using the ebay shortys...........so here's my final design of the home-made long-tubes on my bench, ready to start cutting stainless mandrel bends. Driver's side first-
    [​IMG]
     
  13. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Here's the headers tack-welded in stainless. Note ghetto header fixture courtesy of Home Depot lumber department. (Watching Roadkill while fitting tubes)
    [​IMG]

    Another view. May have to sweep the collector in a bit to stay away from the master cylinder
    [​IMG]

    My steering u joint needs to fit between the second and third primary on the driver's side
    [​IMG]
    Made a tool to clamp the tubes together to hold them for fit-up and tacking but it turns out that connecting the tubes with blue painters tape and then cutting a 1" patch out of it to quickly tack the joint is just as good and a whole lot faster. I thought the purpose of mandrel bends was to have a constant cross section through the bend but they seems to be about .060-.070" out of round so I can sometimes squeeze the tube in a vise while tacking it to avoid a lip at the joint. Plan is to fusion weld the joints with little or no filler with the TIG and my objective is a tight fit up that you can't see light through. Beginning to wish I'd used the Procomp Chinese shorty headers, but I'm in too deep to turn back now. Hopefully I'm pretty far down the learning curve and the passenger side wont take near as long.

    There's about a .015" diametric clearance between the slip on collector and primary tubes - I'm wondering how I'm going to get that to seal up so it doesn't sound like I have a header leak (or asphyxiate me in the cab) Bought a HF tailpipe expander and will experiment with that a bit to see if I can get a tighter fit. My kid has a brazing furnace at work and I'm thinking about putting it together permanently with some brazing paste or foil. Might be time to cut some sample tubes and see how that works.

    Thanks for looking,

    Phil
     
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  14. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    They really look good, Phil.
    The question about sealing the tubes to the collector was exactly the question I was asking, in my head, as I was viewing the pictures.
    I'm thinking, any leaks, even the tiniest, will mess up the oxy. sensor reading.
    I like the clamp connection, you're using for the exhaust hookup.

    Steve.
     
  15. 52wasp

    52wasp Member

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    Phil,
    One word. NICE. Make that two... VERY NICE.

    A friend asked me if I was going to fabricate my own headers. "No" was my answer (you have to draw the line somewhere). But if I did tackle (another seemingly insurmountable task) it, I'd like them to look as good as yours do.
     
  16. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Thanks very much!

    I've built five or six sets of headers over the years and try to get a little better with each attempt. The first pair I did ended up in the scrap heap out of frustration (trying to shoehorn a v8 in an MGB).

    Truth be told, I promised my wife a remodel of the kitchen and I need to slow down a little on spending on my truck project. Headers are time consuming and fussy to make, so they'll keep me busy (and my wife happy with the new kitchen) and my truck out of the paint shop for another month.

    The one I made for my '49 hit the lever on the brake pedal, so I'm off to buy more mandrel bends to turn the collectors 45 degrees...........
     
  17. Zig

    Zig Member

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    Amazing talent and patience!
     
  18. Wolf

    Wolf Member

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    This is wicked cool! Nice work!
     
  19. e015475

    e015475 Member

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    Waiting for the UPS man to bring some more tube, so I tried welding the tubing for the primaries. This is .065 304 welded without rod (fusion welded). There's a little undercutting but the weld is reasonably flat. Getting penetration to the back at about 35 amps on the TIG. Traded my CO2 bottle for an argon bottle and jury-rigged a argon purge. If any of you are professional welders or just handy with a Tig, any tips would be appreciated-
    [​IMG]
     
  20. 50 Chevy LS3

    50 Chevy LS3 Member

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    So, you don't use tri-mix, with a TIG? Just pure Argon? I would love to buy a TIG machine. Never had one to play with. Maybe someday.
    Looks really good to me.

    Steve.
     

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