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Racing Rust

Hi Guys,
Thanks for all the input on valve springs and timing chains. Undoubtablely you will be hearing more from me. My daughters gave me this web site for Father's Day.
www.racingrust.com
This web will give you an idea of my project. It is my first restoration project,and I am loving it.
Thanks again for your help.
Enjoy,
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Very interesting project! So,,,, you have a Star engine and transmission with a Model T rear axle. How is the Ford rear axle attached to the transmission??

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Don
A couple of things............
when I found this car, it had no double
universal between the clutch and the transmission.

Bert Babick helped me through this by showing me his Star car, with the running boards out.

The input shaft of the transmission was broken, of course.
The transmission was attached to the rear end with what appears to be a torque tube, from a Model T with a drive line with the front spline, from a Star, welded to a Model T drive line. Would it have been strong enough or straight enough? I don't know. The drive line was only about 18 inches long.

The front universal behind the transmission, was Star. The transmission was held in place with, would you believe,ONE cross member at the rear of the transmission. GO FIGURE!

Part of the puzzle is the re-engineering to make this High School project actually work. Many of the things that were originally done, did not work.

I wanted hydrolic rear brakes and a 3.08 to 1, gear ratio. I opted for a modern 1980 Ford Pinto rear end, because of it's size. It has a shortened drive line from a Volvo. No problem. The rear end is the only thing that is not period. A Model T rear end or other, could be installed in the future, with the same bracketing. The third member will be completely covered by the tail body work.

When my daughter comes home, I will post more pictures of the car at a Vintage Auto Racing Association, VARA, meet at Buttonwillow Raceway Park in California. The car was quite a hit. I was able to drive it in their pre-war exibition. Especially with no body work, only a skeleton and solid rust. The fact that I was able to drive it on the track, gently, was a HUGE boost for me! The guy driving his vintage Bugatti behind me, was blown away. Wait til you see the Pictures.
I hope I answered your question about the drive line!
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

You mentioned it being a High School Project. That would explain a lot of the design deficiencies, including the offset front spring mounts. It was apparently a "hands on" project to acquaint the students with the difference between a wrench and a screwdriver. Nevertheless, this is an awesome find and an important piece of Star history. It looks like you have a good start on the mechanical refinements and will have a very unique vehicle when you're finished.

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

Don
What an interesting vehicle. Were you able to trace any of the vehicle's history? Do you really think it was a high school project or an early 30's dirt track racer? Just goes to show that you never know what Durant Company product still lurks out there. Who knows what someone will find next?

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1928 Durant Model 65

Re: Racing Rust

Very good slide show with lots of pics. For what it's worth and judging from the combination of a W5 engine, style of transmission, forward universal coupling, and the steering box, it looks like the basics of a 1925 Star F model. The frame is probably a model F grafted to a model T rear section. The front axle looks like a model T part.
Any clues on the radiator shell?

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

I added the Racing Rust website to our Links page.

Rick

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1929 Deluxe Sport Roadster Model 60

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Mike,
No,it's not a dirt track racer (I wish).It has a stock exhaust manifold and a stock Tillotson carburetor.Please notice my knees in the 1st picture with me sitting in the car; my feet are on the pedals.Scarey to drive I'm sure!I lengthined the frame 15" to make it a 90" wheelbase,dirt track racer length and I now fit in it.I also widened it from 17"to 19"so the starter and water pump could go back where they belong.I'm sure the kids visualized a dirt track racer,so that is where I'm headed too.I'm still looking for more history on it.
What a journey,
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Don,
Do you know, off hand, what year Continental went from round side plugs to the two 6 stud side plates
like mine? Could this car be that early?
Thanks,
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Don,
Not a clue on the radiator shell.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Thanks Rick!

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Continental seemed to use the round core plugs and the bolt on core covers on both the W4 and W4 engines, I have examples of all. Basically, I note the style of oil filler used to quickly determine if the engine is W4 or W5.
The W5 came out in late '25 on the "F" models and was continued on thru the "M" models and many 4 cyl Durants.
The transmission shifter style was changed in '26 for the "M" models. Your transmission style was used on the "C" and "F" models with the speedometer drive used only on the "F" models.
I have only noticed the double Spicer u-joint coupling used on various '25 "F" models. '24 and earlier used a clamshell coupling and the "M" series (26-28) used the rubber ball style coupling.
The steering box on your project was used from the '24 "F" thru early '27 "M" models.
With your combination of parts I would confidently date your car in 1925 but was most likely assembled much later. The Ford model "T" rear axle, front axle, and wire wheels seem to be '26-27 parts or even model "A" era..

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

Don
The reason I thought of it as a flat track racer, is if you look at the racer listed on Ebay Motors right now Item #280239334932, the design is similar, but of course you don't have a flat head eight in there. Look at the body though, sure looks similar.

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1928 Durant Model 65

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Don
Thanks for the insite, I thought it was a 1927 or so. I got the spicer unit from Bert Babick. It did not come with the original car. Does this universal work OK, or should I look for a later model with the rubber balls?
Thanks again
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Mike
You got it. That is where I am headed.
Thanks
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Since Durant only used the double Spicer coupling for a short time indicates it was too expensive to produce or maybe somewhat troublesome in operation. I think the "M" style rubber ball coupling would be a better solution. On the other hand, the rubber ball unit was designed for a passenger car application with a smoother clutch engagement, not for racing use.

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

The radiator shell looks like a late 20's unit (nickel plated) that has been sectioned vertically and narrowed up. A favorite radiator shell for these cars was the Willys Whippet.

I was wondering why you moved the springs, but now I see you widened the frame. The original radius rods looked pretty weak. I wonder what the original steering gear looked like. How about the gas pedal?

Your transmission mount still looks pretty weak. Just my two cents. I wish I could have done something like that when I was 14-15.

Do You own a car built by Durant? yes

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Mike,
Sorry man,I thought you were talking about EBAY # 280238146197.
4932 could be my car's clone,on steroids.There were a lot of high school projects in that era,and some did make it to the track.Goggles,leather helmet,T-shirt,run what you brung! Whoa Nellie!!
But a lot of these projects ended up back on the farm for another day.
4932's motor had a better chance of getting on the track,the rest,pretty rough like mine.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Hi CDMN
The radiator may be a Wippet. I don't really know what a Whippet looks like! I will keep my eye out.
The Model T radious rods were very flimsy. I replaced them with Model A. I think there is a picture of the original steering gear, in the pics. I replaced the steering gear with a Franklin, and machined it to center steer.
The original gas pedal was a long barn door hinge. You know the kind. I replaced it with a pedal that I took the rubber off of, and made it smaller.
The transmission mounting seems fine. But the frame flexes when you go over dips at an angle.
I am considering another cross member somewhere. Currently the rear motor mount is bolted to the frame. I might weld it, but that could possibly cause other problems. Maybe it would be better for it to flex.
Thanks for your input.
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Don
This car will hopefully, mostly be driven on the street. If driven at the track, it would be treated very gently. Probably it's salvation was the spicer unit being broken. I have about one inch of ninety weight gear lube in the unit. It is in excellent shape. It would be nice to have a back up, in case this one goes bad. I guess I shouldn't worry about it, as long as I keep it lubricated.
Any thoughts?
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

The thing about any Star front coupling is that it has to be aligned perfectly on the transmission and clutch shafts. Any misalignment will cause premature wear on all parts. The rear of the transmission was originally provided with a bracket that was shimmed to the transmission and hung from the brake cross shafts. In your application it should be securely mounted to a cross member with provision to be shimmed for vertical adjustment to assist in front shaft alignment. The Star "M" series from late '26 on up had just this type of rear trans mount and you could use the same bracket on your transmission.

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1923 Star touring, 1927 Star M Coupe

Re: Racing Rust

Any ideas on what kind of wheels Rusty has? They are 17x3.5 with a 4 lug pattern.They fit the original, fairley large, mechinical rear(only) brakes.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

17 inch tires became regular equipment in 1933. My Reo uses them, Fords used them. Your's seem pretty narrow, Can't think of who might have used 4-bolt hubs. Must have been a lightweight independent brand of the time. Possibly an English Ford Model Y.

Do You own a car built by Durant? yes

Re: Racing Rust

Hi CDNM,
I notice that the Dteant at the top of this web forum has 4 lugs.My car has a larger hub cap opening and the lugs are inside the opening,not outside.
Don

Do You own a car built by Durant? Star single seat dirt track racer (in progress)

Re: Racing Rust

Might be from Willys 77. I think they used 17inch wire-spoked wheels in 1934,35. Lug bolts inside the hubcap. Haven't verified 4 bolts yet. Hard to find the specs. There are two 1935 Willys Wheels for sale on the net at the moment.

Do You own a car built by Durant? yes

Re: Racing Rust

Hi Gang,
I thought you might like to see the posts,
from you, that helped me launch this now
finished project 6 years ago.

sincerely,
Don

Where Are You From? Bakersfield,Ca

Do You own a car built by Durant? 25 Star

 

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