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A Sort of Book Review

A sort of book review.

Page 138 – Removing manifold and carburettor.

“The carburettor can now be withdrawn from its corner. This, however, after you have tried for a little time, you will declare to be impossible. But the thing can be done: I have done it; so go on trying and presently the carburettor will quite unexpectedly creep out into freedom. The secret lies in getting the left hand (or back) end of the manifold out first – then the carburettor – then the right hand (or front) end but all the time the contraption will want humouring by twisting and turning.”

They don’t write service instructions like that anymore!

The extract comes from a book donated to the library via Ken Whitworth, a 1924 (8th edition) of “The original book of the Ford” subtitled “How to get the best out of your Ford car or van” in London by R T Nicholson M.A.

Of almost 300 pages there is a mass of detail including a chapter on “rattles, rumbles, thumps, hisses and squeaks”.

Prices are put into perspective by the note of driver’s wages at 2 pound 10 shillings a week ($5.00) and petrol 1/6 a gallon (5 cents a litre).

Advertisements list improvements and accessories – An A.C. brand spark plug is 3/- (30 cents), a KLG spark plug 4/- and a Lodge plug 5/-. 6 pounds ($12.00) will buy you a Zenith carburettor, a special model for Ford cars to replace the original Holley or Kingston (USA) or the British Zephyr part. Servicing instructions include cleaning the fan belt, decarbonising and inspecting exhaust valves around each 2000 miles (3200 km) although you may get to 5000 miles (8000 km).

It is recommended the silencer be cleaned at 5000 miles and the front wheel bearings be cleaned and relubricated at 3000 miles.

The front spring should be lubricated at 3000 miles and the rears at 5000 miles. Spreading the leaves to allow the grease to enter is recommended.

Spark plugs should be checked at 500 miles. If a plug fails on the road, lower it into the petrol tank on a piece of string then use a hairpin to clean it. The nominated plug gap is 1/32 inch, no thousandths of an inch yet.

Engine oil. Consumption of a pint (600 ml) between 75 and 100 miles (120 – 160 km) is acceptable. It is recommended to clean the inside of the engine when the oil is changed., 1000 miles (1600 km) being often enough. Some alternatives are offered.

Take off the sump (14 bolts) and clean the oil pan and everything else you can reach with paraffin (kerosene). Instructions for refitting the sump takes up close to 2 pages noting that “a little humouring may be needed before the bolts will engage the screw threads”. Then add the 3 quarts (3 litres) of oil required.

An alternative method is to drain the oil, add a gallon of paraffin via the breather pipe then, with the ignition off, turn the starting handle vigorously for five minutes, resting at intervals if so disposed. It is noted that removal of the spark plugs will make “swinging” easier. Then remove the sump and clean as before.

But there is another way. Warm the oil by running the engine, lift the front of the car by 3 or 4 inches, add the paraffin and hand crank for at least five minutes, drain the mix of paraffin, used oil and possibly metal then add new oil.

“Before you start the engine after this operation, do a good spell of handle grinding to work the new oil well into the engine bearings.”

Lots of electrical advice and reference to the author’s other book of Ford Electrics.

Model years are not defined. Models are referenced as – Present style with right hand control and battery lighting and starting, Previous model with left hand control and battery lighting and Earlier model with right hand control with no starter and magneto lighting.

The van with its 750 pound (340 kg) load rating – the weight of a drivers mate to be subtracted from this rating if applicable - and the Tonner van or truck with its heavier frame and worm drive rear axle rate their own chapter. The Tonner has a recommended maximum operating speed of 15 MPH (24 km/h) due to its lower gearing.

See Ken or Dennis to borrow this book from the library.

Dennis Brooks.