Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number 7373

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Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Sat Dec 19, 2015 5:56 pm

Hi all,

The job on the hull has had to be put off until after the Xmas break now so in the meantime I am still focussing on a lot of the small jobs with this.

As you can see from the photos, I’ve done some more painting on some of the interior parts as well as the gun parts that I had cleaned up in molasses.

I stripped all the turret hold down roller assemblies. As you can see I am missing one, and one in particular is pretty stuffed. I am on the lookout for a replacement for that one plus another one I need to make up the eight required. I’ll need to fabricate the vertical roller and pin for all of them as well as up the horizontal roller for another three of them.

I pulled the two turret support rollers out of the hull. Once out, one came apart fairly easily and both it and the housing are soaking in molasses. The other one looks like it is quite corroded and refuses to come apart so far. It is also soaking now for the Xmas break. I have another bearing housing which is very tidy and a contact has a bearing put aside for me. I am on the lookout for the gudgeon for that bearing though.

I had a look at the FT-237 radio mount and the radio tray. As you can see there is a fair bit of work in restoring the FT-237 so I have put that to one side at present while I concentrate on some of the other stuff.

Merry Xmas!
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Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car


Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Sat Jan 16, 2016 1:53 pm

Hi all,

Just a few progress photos from some clean up jobs I did over the Xmas and New Year period.

I rebuilt the fuel pump with new diaphragms etc, gave it a paint job and it is now away in storage awaiting the engine rebuild. More bits and pieces have come out of the molasses bath, washed and cleaned up and primed/painted.

I would like some help with the mine racks if someone could assist please.

I have one which came with the project and has been cut off a hull. I then have to make a second one. As you can see, I have the length of the rack but I need to know the width of the rack mount for both the lower and upper parts of the mount. With this one being cut off, I can't work out how far it extends off the side of the hull.

That is, the distance from the point the mine rack is joined to the hull, and the folded corners of the upper and lower rack mounts.

Could anyone give me these measurements please?
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Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:30 pm

Hi all,

We are hoping to get the M8 hull pieces into the welding area of the workshop next week. The plan is to clean up the cuts, position the hull pieces together and see exactly what is required to join them.

I hadn’t seen this before because the hull has been stored with the co-driver side near a shelving area, but I noticed that there is a piece of steel attached to the side of the sponson on the co-driver’s side, as per the attached photographs.

The steel is bolted and welded and there is a hole through the centre of it going right through into the hull area.

Can anyone advise on what this addition might have been for? Would it have been added in during its WW2 service, or is it more likely a post-war addition?

I have seen one photograph of an M8 which appeared to have something attached to that co-driver sponson but I couldn’t make out what it was.

If I can work out what it might have been, it will guide me toward whether I have it removed or just to leave it as part of the vehicle’s history.
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Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

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seacon
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by seacon » Sun Jan 24, 2016 1:10 am

That is an Italian made bracket. It must go!

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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by dgrev » Sun Jan 24, 2016 1:25 am

Darryl

It is a mounting pad for a (British) radio aerial mount.

All the Italian Greyhounds had them.

Actually, there should be 2 on that side?

I left them on mine as part of its history, along with the armoured front floor
and the rebuild plaque. There should be a rectangular pad welded below the
RHS tail light for the plaque.

Regards
Doug

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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Mon Jan 25, 2016 12:07 am

Hi Doug and Seacon,

Thanks for the replies. I managed to locate a photo today of a restored M8 which is obviously ex-Italian as well. Like you say Doug, it had two of those pieces on the sponson whereas mine only has the one. I don’t see any sign of the other one being there and being removed, either inside or outside the hull. The plaque you talked about Doug, appears long gone.

I want to restore this to its WW2 appearance so at this stage I am inclined to remove it, but I will keep you posted.

Thanks.
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Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Tue Jan 26, 2016 7:01 pm

Hi all,

We have the two hull pieces positioned in place now and are working out what is required to join them. I will post the pictures shortly.

We have the turret ring gear on top of the hull at present (just because it is easier to work with there) which is helping us position things and gauge how much is required.

What I am after please are any reference measurements that we can use to make sure we have the length of the hull correct.

The measurement from the front axle spring mount to the rear suspension mount would be useful. Alternatively, the measurement from the front shock absorber mount to the rear shock absorber mount would be good, unless anyone has any other better ideas on what references we could use?

Thanks to Willy, I have the length of the side sponsons as 1315mm on the very top and 675mm on the bottom.

The length of the sponson across the welded join in the middle would also be handy, but any other reference measurements someone could provide would be useful just to check.

Many thanks.
Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

sly22
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by sly22 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:22 am

I think you should especially take into account the round turret.

you can make a metal template and secure it in place of the turret bearings.

If you violate this round you can not rotate the turret.

I gave the jerrycan holder Willy ... you in an upcoming package .... :wink:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C-S0p5gZeI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hynjuv_9WTM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jaw0NBEpUDY

Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:01 am

Hi Sly,

Thanks for the reply. Yes, we have the turret ring gear in place which along with the measurement of the top part of the sponson, this should align the top of the hull nicely.

It would be good through if we could confirm a measurement low on the hull, just to be sure we have that right, and the hull square.

Thanks for the bracket. Will wait until I hear from Willy!
Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

sly22
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by sly22 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:02 am

ok :wink:

Big D
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:04 pm

Hi all,

Here are the photos of the hull in the engineering workshop. The pieces have been set up and tacked together to assess what is required to join them.

So far, we have worked off the top and bottom dimensions I have of the sponsons and the turret ring gear and set it up accordingly. Now that it is set up accurately,you can see that there is quite a gap on the driver side, while on the co-driver side, the guys had to cut away a fair bit of the old metal to get the pieces in the right place.

We actually believe the hull pieces could be from different M8’s and it wouldn't surprise me if there is at least one other M8 driving around with two mismatched halves! The pieces just don’t meet as you would expect from one piece that has been cut in half, and the fact that we had to cut away some metal to get them into place, along with a few differences in colour, suggests this could be the case. Doug, your comment about the Italian radio-mount is another clue.

We don’t see that as a problem though and we believe it will go together in a relatively straightforward way. I am looking for some feedback on how best to do the job though please.

The guys in the engineering workshop believe the best approach would be to replace the three outer plates (top plate, mid plate, lower plate) on the sponsons on each side with new pieces of mild steel, cut to size. Cutting off the existing plate is no problem and once fitted they can replicate all the previous welds.

This will give them full access to be able to weld the channel at the bottom of the hull and all the inner parts of the hull that would be difficult to get to. The disadvantage of course is in losing that original plate, but I see the practicality in this solution.

Option two is to remove what is left of the three plates on the sponsons on each side of the rear hull section only. New pieces for these would be cut to a size to match what was left of the plates on the front half of the hull, once they were tidied up, so that a neat join between the two could be made. This would give reasonable access to the channel and inner parts of the hull, and it would leave more of the original sponson in place. There would be a bit of grinding to tidy up the joins in the sponson.

What do all you experts suggest? I’m keen to hear any suggestions.
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Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

dgrev
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by dgrev » Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:19 pm

Darryl

Option 3

Cut plates to match the sponson plates, but slightly smaller, so that they can be welded on the inside of the sponsons.
This has the benefit that the exterior plates are preserved as much as possible, along with any numbers stamped into
them. It also means that once welded in and if done correctly, exterior dimensions can be locked in without the
risk of weld contraction (on cooling) shrinking those dimensions.
Then it is a simple matter of cutting accurately shaped filler plates for the missing sponson gaps, these go
in last and then won't affect dimensions on cooling.
However, it does mean the hard to get areas caused by leaving the sponson plates insitu is still there.
Only someone doing a very detailed inspection would detect that the sponsons are double plated.

Your people will be looking for the quickest and easiest and also cheapest (for you) solution to the problems.

It is up to you how authentic, original and EXPENSIVE a solution you want to nominate.

Regards
Doug

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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Thu Jan 28, 2016 1:19 am

Hi Doug,

Hmm…interesting. Yes, not something we talked about or considered. I do like your thinking though and the idea of keeping as much of the original plate in place does appeal. That does seem like a viable option to me inspite of the difficulties of getting at the innards.

Thanks for that. I will discuss with them and see what they say.
Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car

sly22
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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by sly22 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:07 am

hi

do you need measures? I can do today

sly

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Re: Restoration of Ford M8 armoured car U.S Ordnance number

Post by Big D » Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:16 am

Hi Sly

Any measurements you can provide would be appreciated.

Many thanks.
Darryl Lennane
NZ

1943 Willys MB
1941 LP2A MG Carrier
1943 White M3A1 AOP
1942 Willys MBT
1944 Ford M8 Armoured Car


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