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Old 04-06-2020, 11:49 AM   #1
Automotive Stud
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Default Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

Just curious if anyone has done the swap. Obviously the torque tube would need to be shortened, and the trans mount is quite different. What really concerns me is the overdrive solenoid clearing the X member. Just curious if anyone has attempted the job.
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:51 PM   #2
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

Yes, I seen a 40 with that setup a few years ago at the Moonshine Festival in north Georgia. It was done a long time ago , probably in the 40s- early 50s. Can’t remember any particulars about it other than the X member being modified. Wish I had taken some photos of it.
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Old 04-06-2020, 02:23 PM   #3
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

I had a 40 ford with a 50 merc overdrive. The transmission is basically the same size but open drive.

The entire center of the X memeber was opened up but the rails were intact. The lower flange on the left side.was.notched to clear the solenoid.
With the open drive the rear of the trans was lower then What you will run into with the closed drive. It worked because the pinion on the later model ford rear is much lower then the banjo rear.

In the end I broke it and replaced it with a T5. It failed from age and was well abused prior to me owning it.
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Old 04-06-2020, 02:31 PM   #4
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In the end I broke it and replaced it with a T5. It failed from age and was well abused prior to me owning it.

Hey Skids....Probably a dumb question, but since you've experienced both the 3+1 Merc and the 4+1 T5, especially in the same car, could you elaborate a little on which trans was all-around better to drive with, and why? DD
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Old 04-06-2020, 02:49 PM   #5
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

T5, shifts smother and less of a jump between gears. Car has a stock 8BA and a 3.55 rear and i dont use 1 st gear in the T5
None of the extra stuff with the overdrive on the T5 that the merc has
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Old 04-06-2020, 05:12 PM   #6
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T5, shifts smother and less of a jump between gears. Car has a stock 8BA and a 3.55 rear and i dont use 1 st gear in the T5
None of the extra stuff with the overdrive on the T5 that the merc has

Thanks, Skid! That's the "worthless" 1st gear that I keep preaching about in previous T5 threads. It is likely a transmission that came out of an S-10, which mostly have a 4.03 (useless) 1st gear ratio. That is the reason why I keep preaching about using the Camaro gear set which has four nicely-spaced gears with 1st gear having a 2.95 ratio....huge difference. It's simple as pie to swap that S-10 rear housing (for it's forward shifter location) onto a Camaro gearbox, or to put the Camaro gear set into the S-10 case and tail shaft housing. Thanks for the reply! DD
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Old 04-06-2020, 05:48 PM   #7
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

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T5, shifts smother and less of a jump between gears. Car has a stock 8BA and a 3.55 rear and i dont use 1 st gear in the T5
None of the extra stuff with the overdrive on the T5 that the merc has

But you lose the instant kickdown feature of the old overdrive trans! Cruising along in O/D and need to pass in a hurry? Just floor the gas pedal and you've instantly downshifted without touching the clutch nor the shift lever! After you finish passing, just let off the gas an instant and you are automatically back in overdrive! Coming to a long downhill? Floor the gas to kickdown, pull out the lockout handle, and proceed down the hill in direct high with better engine braking. Cars with the Borg-Warner O/D usually had 4.11 or so gears. With a ratio of (I think) .72 in O/D, the effective axle ratio became 2.95 instead of 4.11. If you didn't like to shift around town, you just left the trans in second in slow traffic. If/when you got above 27 MPH just let off the gas for an instant and you were in overdrive second, good for 40-50 MPH.
That ol' overdrive had a lot going for it!
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Old 04-06-2020, 06:38 PM   #8
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But you lose the instant kickdown feature of the old overdrive trans! Cruising along in O/D and need to pass in a hurry? Just floor the gas pedal and you've instantly downshifted without touching the clutch nor the shift lever! After you finish passing, just let off the gas an instant and you are automatically back in overdrive! Coming to a long downhill? Floor the gas to kickdown, pull out the lockout handle, and proceed down the hill in direct high with better engine braking. Cars with the Borg-Warner O/D usually had 4.11 or so gears. With a ratio of (I think) .72 in O/D, the effective axle ratio became 2.95 instead of 4.11. If you didn't like to shift around town, you just left the trans in second in slow traffic. If/when you got above 27 MPH just let off the gas for an instant and you were in overdrive second, good for 40-50 MPH.
That ol' overdrive had a lot going for it!
Right, i know from experience and i wont be switching back. The T5 is worlds apart from the merc

The reason I used the S10 transmission at the time, it was free for towing off the entire truck. I since bought a Camaro transmission but have no reason to take it apart.right now

The lincoln overdrive to me is just a doner for the gear set. Last fall there was a local hoarders place getting scraped and pretty much everything was junk but digging inside the remains of a 49 ford panel truck was a lincoln overdrive. I bought it from the scrapman and took it apart with a sledgehammer. I did manage to salvage a 25 tooth gear set and a U joint. As bad as the outside was i didnt think there would be anything left inside. The overdrive unit was junk.
I took a 50 olds 3 speed apart the same way to salvage the output shaft. The rest was junk. A careful smack in the right spot with a 8lb hammer and they split open like a egg. Saves alot of time and cussing getting a frozen junk transmission apart

Last edited by skidmarks; 04-06-2020 at 06:43 PM.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:36 PM   #9
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Last fall, I bought a Lincoln O/D from the scrapman and took it apart with a sledgehammer. As bad as the outside was i didnt think there would be anything left inside.
I took a 50 olds 3 speed apart the same way to salvage the output shaft. A careful smack in the right spot with a 8lb hammer and they split open like a egg. Saves alot of time and cussing getting a frozen junk transmission apart

Skids.....I like your attitude, and I really like your approach to "real-world" problem solving! DD
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Old 04-07-2020, 06:41 AM   #10
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Yes, I seen a 40 with that setup a few years ago at the Moonshine Festival in north Georgia. It was done a long time ago , probably in the 40s- early 50s. Can’t remember any particulars about it other than the X member being modified. Wish I had taken some photos of it.
I was at the Moonshine Festival a few years ago with my blue standard, Lincoln OD equipped '40. Powered by a 255 Merc flathead.
In fact we met, probably introduced by Charles B.
Anyway, my Lincoln OD was modified with a '50 merc solenoid & adapter, still utilizing the Lincoln tail housing & "U" joint. This mod tucks the solenoid higher into the X member. This plus 13" taken from torque tube & driveshaft connects things together. A little nibbling here & there makes it work. I kept the 3:78 gear & with 2,25-75x15 tires made a great road car.
My big deal was to keep things stock looking. I didn't want a shifter coming out of the floor. That plus I'm old & have had BW overdrives in just about every old car possible.
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Last edited by 42merc; 04-07-2020 at 07:17 AM.
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Old 04-07-2020, 08:09 AM   #11
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

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I was at the Moonshine Festival a few years ago with my blue standard, Lincoln OD equipped '40. Powered by a 255 Merc flathead.
In fact we met, probably introduced by Charles B.
Anyway, my Lincoln OD was modified with a '50 merc solenoid & adapter, still utilizing the Lincoln tail housing & "U" joint. This mod tucks the solenoid higher into the X member. This plus 13" taken from torque tube & driveshaft connects things together. A little nibbling here & there makes it work. I kept the 3:78 gear & with 2,25-75x15 tires made a great road car.
My big deal was to keep things stock looking. I didn't want a shifter coming out of the floor. That plus I'm old & have had BW overdrives in just about every old car possible.
Don
Thanks for posting, Don. I was going to post something similar about the Merc. solenoid. I have a cherry LZ O/D with a 26 tooth set but it does not have the solenoid. More than likely, I'll just use the gears like Skid said and, if using a O/D trans, I'd use a T5 with the proper gear set.
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Old 04-07-2020, 10:21 AM   #12
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I was at the Moonshine Festival a few years ago with my blue standard, Lincoln OD equipped '40. Powered by a 255 Merc flathead.
In fact we met, probably introduced by Charles B.
Anyway, my Lincoln OD was modified with a '50 merc solenoid & adapter, still utilizing the Lincoln tail housing & "U" joint. This mod tucks the solenoid higher into the X member. This plus 13" taken from torque tube & driveshaft connects things together. A little nibbling here & there makes it work. I kept the 3:78 gear & with 2,25-75x15 tires made a great road car.
My big deal was to keep things stock looking. I didn't want a shifter coming out of the floor. That plus I'm old & have had BW overdrives in just about every old car possible.
Don
Did the "adapter" where the solenoid mounts from a merc transmission bolt right on the lincoln transmission?

I have one of the merc transmissions in my roadster, and after sorting out the bugs I really like it! I recently came into a lincoln trans, and I'm getting ready to swap the motor and rebuild the trans in the '40, and this car is keeping the torque tube, so the lincoln trans is looking really promising. It still has the solenoid but my car is 12v.
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Old 04-07-2020, 12:15 PM   #13
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Did the "adapter" where the solenoid mounts from a merc transmission bolt right on the lincoln transmission?

I have one of the merc transmissions in my roadster, and after sorting out the bugs I really like it! I recently came into a lincoln trans, and I'm getting ready to swap the motor and rebuild the trans in the '40, and this car is keeping the torque tube, so the lincoln trans is looking really promising. It still has the solenoid but my car is 12v.

Hey Auto Stud....Is THIS the Lincoln OD trans you're talking about, below? IF so, and keeping in mind that you want to retain the torque tube, had you given any consideration to something just a smidge smaller and without that gi-normous solenoid sticking out the side, like this short little T5 that we put together using (ALL Borg-Warner factory parts) Jeep 4 X 4 main shaft and rear housing to shorten this Camaro-geared T5 by almost 10"? It's pictured here in Heard's '35 Ford chassis which is essentially identical to a '40 chassis, dimensionally. My God, that Lincoln rig has gotta weigh every bit of 200 pounds, no? Just sayin'! DD





Shortened Camaro T5







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Old 04-07-2020, 12:18 PM   #14
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

That's a neat setup, but I want to keep the column shift, and I already have a lincoln transmission.
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Old 04-07-2020, 01:12 PM   #15
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

Wasnt there a top loader 4 speed were 4th was overdrive and its side shift? That would be a column shift option but your reverse would have to be a seperate cable.

I have another project that has a built 57 cadillac motor with a top loader adapter, but i got one of those t170 overdrives to use with it. But its also floor shift.

I know your determined to use that lincoln overdrive.
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Old 04-07-2020, 03:58 PM   #16
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Hey Auto Stud....Is THIS the Lincoln OD trans you're talking about, below? IF so, and keeping in mind that you want to retain the torque tube, had you given any consideration to something just a smidge smaller and without that gi-normous solenoid sticking out the side, like this short little T5 that we put together using (ALL Borg-Warner factory parts) Jeep 4 X 4 main shaft and rear housing to shorten this Camaro-geared T5 by almost 10"? It's pictured here in Heard's '35 Ford chassis which is essentially identical to a '40 chassis, dimensionally. My God, that Lincoln rig has gotta weigh every bit of 200 pounds, no? Just sayin'! DD





Shortened Camaro T5







..



But then you miss the feel of instant kickdown! Just wiggle your toes, basically, and that ol' flathead pops into its powerband and away you go.
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Old 04-07-2020, 04:22 PM   #17
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But then you miss the feel of instant kickdown! Just wiggle your toes, basically, and that ol' flathead pops into its powerband and away you go.

Well, what's the fun in that? My new Chevy pick-up's electronic, computer-controlled automatic trans will do that all day long! I thought the whole idea here was to experience just little nostalgia by still being able to row that trans by hand, along with a little bit of fancy, coordinated foot work on the that third pedal. DD
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Old 04-08-2020, 03:10 AM   #18
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

That Lincoln tranny is a BEAST! I bet I could not even lift it . . . I think I'll go the T5 route on my next 34 build - with the good Ford Motorsport gearset and a .82 overdrive.
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Old 04-08-2020, 06:18 AM   #19
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That Lincoln tranny is a BEAST! I bet I could not even lift it . . . I think I'll go the T5 route on my next 34 build - with the good Ford Motorsport gearset and a .82 overdrive.
I agree. After seeing those two picts.
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Old 04-08-2020, 03:22 PM   #20
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That Lincoln tranny is a BEAST! I bet I could not even lift it . . . I think I'll go the T5 route on my next 34 build - with the good Ford Motorsport gearset and a .82 overdrive.
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I agree. After seeing those two picts.

Tim...IF you and Bored&Stroked are planning a T5 with an open drive line, that'll all work-out just fine. But if y'all are talking about doing the torque tube hook-up with the little SHORT T5 like the one in my picture, you have to remember that to utilize the SHORT Jeep main shaft and rear extension housing, the gear set you use MUST be of the NON World Class variety, which there ain't a damned thing wrong with. The Jeeps were only manufactured in NWC configurations. The only differences are in some of the bearing types, and in the friction materials on the synchronizers.


There is no difference in gear strengths between the WC and the NWC trans types. With that being said, and if you do plan on the shorty Jeep parts, ya better get after it looking for the Jeep parts....they weren't that easy to find back when, and they're starting to get fairly few and far between now. The only three Jeep parts needed are the main shaft, the rear housing and the 23-spline upper OD gear. I can help you with details if needed. DD
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Old 04-09-2020, 06:18 PM   #21
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

The 40 coupe I'm building now I used the 48 Lincoln v12 and overdrive, and had to cut the x member out to mount the transmission in the frame, the shift solenoid sticks way out from the trans that gave me some problems to work around. If you are putting it behind a v8 it would require less cutting. There are pictures of the car in my album on the HAMB if you want to see what I had to cut out. Look at Two Couped up album.
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Old 04-09-2020, 06:48 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked View Post
That Lincoln tranny is a BEAST! I bet I could not even lift it . . . I think I'll go the T5 route on my next 34 build - with the good Ford Motorsport gearset and a .82 overdrive.
Quote:
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I agree. After seeing those two picts.

Tim...IF you and Bored&Stroked are planning a T5 with an open drive line, that'll all work-out just fine. But if y'all are talking about doing the torque tube hook-up with the little SHORT T5 like the one in my picture, you have to remember that to utilize the SHORT Jeep main shaft and rear extension housing, the gear set you use MUST be of the NON World Class variety, which there ain't a damned thing wrong with. The Jeeps were only manufactured in NWC configurations. The only differences are in some of the bearing types, and in the friction materials on the synchronizers.


There is no difference in gear strengths between the WC and the NWC trans types. With that being said, and if you do plan on the shorty Jeep parts, ya better get after it looking for the Jeep parts....they weren't that easy to find back when, and they're starting to get fairly few and far between now. The only three Jeep parts needed are the main shaft, the rear housing and the 23-spline upper OD gear. I can help you with details if needed. DD
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42 merc asks:
What is the real world cost of the T5, Jeep, torque tube conversion, COMPLETE ?
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Old 04-09-2020, 06:50 PM   #23
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Tim...IF you and Bored&Stroked are planning a T5 with an open drive line, that'll all work-out just fine. But if y'all are talking about doing the torque tube hook-up with the little SHORT T5 like the one in my picture, you have to remember that to utilize the SHORT Jeep main shaft and rear extension housing, the gear set you use MUST be of the NON World Class variety, which there ain't a damned thing wrong with. The Jeeps were only manufactured in NWC configurations. The only differences are in some of the bearing types, and in the friction materials on the synchronizers.


There is no difference in gear strengths between the WC and the NWC trans types. With that being said, and if you do plan on the shorty Jeep parts, ya better get after it looking for the Jeep parts....they weren't that easy to find back when, and they're starting to get fairly few and far between now. The only three Jeep parts needed are the main shaft, the rear housing and the 23-spline upper OD gear. I can help you with details if needed. DD
DD, thank you. Yes, I want it closed drive. OK, I'll reach out to you. I don't need WC so I'm on board with that.
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Old 04-09-2020, 06:52 PM   #24
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

42 merc asks:
What is the real world cost of the T5, Jeep, torque tube conversion, COMPLETE ?

I'll X2 what 42 Merc asked: Can you buy this conversion complete, ready to rock and roll?
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Old 04-10-2020, 11:00 AM   #25
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Back to the top for a cost figure.
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Old 04-10-2020, 03:14 PM   #26
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42 merc asks:
What is the real world cost of the T5, Jeep, torque tube conversion, COMPLETE ?

I'll X2 what 42 Merc asked: Can you buy this conversion complete, ready to rock and roll?

Tim and 42 Merc….. Sorry, I've just now seen your requests from yesterday evening. I went back to take a look at the original "T5 W/Torque Tube" thread that I posted three and a half years ago now. Man, how time flies! Anyway, I see that you both originally checked-in to read that thread back when. In view of your current questions, and they are legitimate questions, it would likely serve good purpose to go back and reacquaint yourselves with some of the details and methods of the original article. Just below this sentence is a link to that ancient thread that you can click on, or you can merely click on the "T5 W/TORQUE TUBE " at the bottom, left of ANY of my posts here on the 'Barn and that T5 thread comes up in it's entirety.


https://www.fordbarn.com/forum/showt...T5+TORQUE+TUBE


What should be remembered in OUR case is the fact that Heard fabricated many of the parts/pieces needed to either adapt the torque tube to trans, mount the trans, fabrication of a pocket to re-mount the front wishbone onto his fabricated rear trans mount plate, as well as rebuilding and assembling the "new", shorty T5 assembly himself. T5s are easy to assemble. Virtually all parts of the transmission were purchased USED except for the fresh rebuild parts package like bearings, synchronizers and gaskets. The short Jeep main shaft and tail housing were found on eBay. The main case and Camaro 2.95 gear set came as a result of a Craigs List Camaro T5 trans purchase in a nearby Florida community. These '83-'87 Camaro T5s are still found at swap meets on a regular basis. The Camaro transmissions are relatively easy to spot as they have the common Chevy Muncie-type bolt pattern on the front AND they have the 26-splined input shaft, whereas the other wimpy Chevy T5s (with crummy gear ratios) have a 14-spline input shaft. Individual gears (if a bad one needs replacing, for instance) are readily available at specialty shops all over the internet, and all over eBay, also.


The most expensive items were the custom made 23-spline trans to U-joint adapter which was fabricated by Kato King on the HAMB, who also goes by "Cranium" here on the 'Barn. Seems like those couple of torque tube adapter pieces he supplied were about $450 or so from memory. I believe that also included the little 23-spline, 25-tooth O/D gear. Pictures of those and other adapter pieces are seen in our T5 thread. The T5 to flathead adapter is available in several different iterations from three or four different sources. Depending on whose adapter you opt for, they seem to range from about $269-ish to around $600 or so, and a couple of others I've seen for stupid money. About all that's left of any expense is the torque tube/drive shaft shortening. Heard may chime-in here and we can find out for sure, but it seems like he found an old, established drive shaft shop with an old guy that knew the ropes, and I want to say that cost him about two Benjamins ($200-ish). We have since determined that there is a good possibility that a V8 torque tube and drive shaft from '33 or '34 MIGHT fit perfectly without shortening. It's gonna take just a little more butt-scratchin' and figurin' on my part to fully ascertain that to be a factual statement.


As noted in the original thread, neither Heard or myself offer any parts or complete kits to complete this modification. This is hot rodding at it's best. Measure once, measure once again, cut it precisely, and glue it together.


We've been rather disappointed in the fact that despite a dozen or so folks have made inquiries and asked specific questions since then, we know of only one other completed shorty T5/Torque Tube build and that is in Cory Taulbert's little '32 coupe, the story and pictures of which I've included in OUR T5 thread on page 4, I believe. It's the maroon '32 coupe...big pictures! Last I read he had over 6,000 miles on that one, and as nice as Cory's cars are, he doesn't "baby" his stuff. More reason to re-read that old thread in it's entirety. I'm sorry that I can't break the costs down to the dollar, but so much is dependent on how resourceful you are, both at resourcing parts, and with your fabrication skills. I'd STILL be happy with sharing any info that I can, or even just a little suggestive advise if it helps. Let me know what ya think, guys! Dick D (DD)
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Old 04-10-2020, 08:27 PM   #27
Pete
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Default Re: Zephyr overdrive into 1940 Ford?

Just nit picking but didn't Lincoln Zephyr's have Columbia's with hypoid gears?
I was going by the title of the thread.
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