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Old 03-27-2021, 06:36 AM   #21
52Allard
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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Do you have any pictures of the Ardun that would have been in it? I'm wondering if it had the early or later production heads (they are different). I would imagine that it came with the later heads and center water outlets (not on the front). Also, what intake manifold and carb setup did it have?
Found a couple of better photos of how the intake and carbs should have been on the Allard as it was originally built. Hard to find photos like this because, for most performance oriented people, carbs and manifolds were the first to go...
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File Type: jpg ardun engine4.jpg (57.4 KB, 85 views)
File Type: jpg Ardun-1947-2.jpg (59.7 KB, 75 views)
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Old 03-27-2021, 06:47 AM   #22
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Here's a good summary from the original owner of my car why he needed to rebuild the Ardun. From the early letter, Mr. Sisler sounded confident that he was far along in the rebuild and just needed a little help. Turns out he was only starting on his journey.
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File Type: pdf 7-19-54 sisler - hjDavis001.pdf (1.67 MB, 65 views)
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Old 03-27-2021, 12:04 PM   #23
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

WOW, that's quite a letter. Was there a response?

I think he should have considered the re-paint, in lemon yellow
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Old 03-27-2021, 03:46 PM   #24
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Well as I wrote above ignition and oiling was a big problem due to the lack of complete development when first designed. That parts wish list even in 1954 would have been very difficult to fill. Today it would be no problem to get the parts requested as it pertains to the engine side of the issues he was having.
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Old 03-27-2021, 04:52 PM   #25
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Interesting that in at least a couple of the pictures you show, they are of later 49-53 flathead blocks - not the earlier ones. Did Allard put any of those engines in these cars?

A '99A' block is pre-war (first came out in the 39 Mercury) . . . the designation was used for the original 239 cubic inch blocks. I'm not aware of any 99A blocks being produced after 1942.

In the letter where Zora talks about the 99A block, this was probably just following the numerous wives-tales that the 99A block was the best and thickest of the flathead blocks -- I've not found that to be true . . . but it was passed on through the gossip channels for many years. I've sonic tested a lot of blocks and the various claims that "this XXX block was the thickest" . . . or "this was a high nickel casting" claims are just that - stories to pass on.

I have a NOS 99A type block in my 32 Cabriolet - and the only reason is that I wanted to rebuild the car as the pre-war HotRod that is was - so I needed a large displacement pre-war block . . . hence the Mercury or WWII production blocks.

Are you racing it on any of the vintage meets? Is that a goal of yours? If so, I'm sure it would run a lot better with a Hilborn fuel injection setup - but they are really hard to find and very expensive. This is what I'd run with the car - as long as the goal wasn't to make it a street driver.

My suggestion is that if you really desire to put an Ardun back in this car, that you talk to RonnieRoadster or myself at some point - and get an idea as to what the build specs could be, the approximate budgetary costs, etc.. I would definitely try to put an original Ardun in it - as that will be the best as far as value and authenticity is concerned. As many find out, they can "invest" a lot in an Ardun - but few are sorry that they did. (As long as the cost doesn't cause a divorce!). LOL
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Old 03-27-2021, 06:53 PM   #26
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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I enjoyed reading the letters! Wishing you success with your project!
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Old 03-28-2021, 08:51 PM   #27
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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Interesting that in at least a couple of the pictures you show, they are of later 49-53 flathead blocks - not the earlier ones. Did Allard put any of those engines in these cars?

A '99A' block is pre-war (first came out in the 39 Mercury) . . . the designation was used for the original 239 cubic inch blocks. I'm not aware of any 99A blocks being produced after 1942.
I'm not sure of all the different Ford configurations wound up in the Allards originally. Still new to the group and most of the guys I have talked to so far either had Cadillac engines from new or Cadillac transplants at some point although. Many of the cars were shipped to the US without an engine and the person who bought the car had their favorite engine installed. Cadillac was popular and a few had Chrysler Hemi's or Oldsmobile engines. In reading the Allard book from Tom Lush who worked there back in the day, it sounded like whatever was available went into the cars shipped with engines. Also, the cars have been reworked lots and people race the J2's and J2X's without too much regard for originality as far as I can tell.

Thanks for the info on the Ford 99A block. I haven't found a lot of info on that one so still learning. James Sisler called it a Canadian engine in lots of his letters so maybe it was a C99A? Not sure if that matters.
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Old 03-28-2021, 09:02 PM   #28
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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Are you racing it on any of the vintage meets? Is that a goal of yours? If so, I'm sure it would run a lot better with a Hilborn fuel injection setup - but they are really hard to find and very expensive. This is what I'd run with the car - as long as the goal wasn't to make it a street driver.
I'm a mechanic at heart and not a race car driver so my goal is to try a non-competitive rally or tour, take it to meets, take the kids and wife out for drives on nice days. If I had a chance to take a lap or two around Watkins Glenn, sure wouldn't turn that down (won't get there any other way than driving an oldie). I'd hate for the thing to be locked away in a garage gathering dust. I'll probably wind up with a carburetor setup. Either dual or triple 94's or 97's look really great.

Last edited by 52Allard; 03-29-2021 at 06:30 PM.
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Old 03-28-2021, 09:25 PM   #29
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

This may be of peripheral interest to the O/P. It has a 21 stud Pilot engine.

https://www.fordbarn.com/forum/showt...ghlight=allard.
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Old 03-28-2021, 09:27 PM   #30
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Allard Motors weren't too much help to Sisler from his previous letter as Allard was having trouble selling cars in '54 and lost Duntov who went to Chevy so they had other problems to worry about (although Allard did manage to come through with lots of other stock parts later but not upgraded parts as Sisler was hoping for).
I'll save you all the many letter drama of the Ardun engine rebuild when the original owner sent the heads to a shop where the shop ordered new valve guides from C-T Automotive. The repair shop never actually measured the dimension required for the new valve guides and C-T custom-made a new set of cast iron vale guides that were loose like the set that needed to be replaced.
These letters are to and from Clem TeBow when James Sisler still has a pile of parts and trying to figure out how to get his engine back together
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 10854 sisler - tebow003.pdf (1.14 MB, 35 views)
File Type: pdf 101254 tebow-sisler004.pdf (749.0 KB, 35 views)
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Old 03-28-2021, 09:33 PM   #31
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

I am kind of surprised that they put an Ardun in an "L"; I thought they all went into J2's.

Live and learn.
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Old 03-29-2021, 06:04 AM   #32
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

I can tell from the letters that Sisler knew enough to be dangerous and Clem pretty much told him to "let us do it" and we'll do it right. Some of the dialog about chrome lifters and steel cams - pretty much tells you there can be some issues with the setup if that is what Sisler believes he needs to run. Also, given all the requirements that Sisler has (which I can understand), he really needed somebody like CT to build him a complete engine, dyno test it and deliver the entire package - but that would have been some serious money (then or now!).

My guess is that Sisler never sent the heads to Clem and maybe didn't know enough to get all of it done with his own methods . . . and the engine probably never came back together (or continued to have issues). Clem was correct in not trying to just "send parts" (for the heads) - as the result is usually not good (especially with an Ardun and all the little tricks it takes to get them correctly running).

Did you ever find out where the engine actually went? Do you know the serial numbers for the heads?
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Old 03-29-2021, 07:56 AM   #33
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Yes, an excellent response from Clem. If only folks would listen to their engine builder.
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Old 03-29-2021, 06:06 PM   #34
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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I can tell from the letters that Sisler knew enough to be dangerous and Clem pretty much told him to "let us do it" and we'll do it right. Some of the dialog about chrome lifters and steel cams - pretty much tells you there can be some issues with the setup if that is what Sisler believes he needs to run. Also, given all the requirements that Sisler has (which I can understand), he really needed somebody like CT to build him a complete engine, dyno test it and deliver the entire package - but that would have been some serious money (then or now!).

My guess is that Sisler never sent the heads to Clem and maybe didn't know enough to get all of it done with his own methods . . . and the engine probably never came back together (or continued to have issues). Clem was correct in not trying to just "send parts" (for the heads) - as the result is usually not good (especially with an Ardun and all the little tricks it takes to get them correctly running).

Did you ever find out where the engine actually went? Do you know the serial numbers for the heads?
I think you are exactly correct about Sisler. He knew a little bit, was trying to gain as much advice from everyone who he talked to (and as you know everyone has a different opinion), and he was trying to do it all on a budget.

Find the letter exchange that happened next with C&T(next post). I don't know if Sisler actually sent the heads and engine but I suspect he didn't. He did mention having a fire in early '55 and needing new carburetors, linkage and fuel supply next spring so either got it running and had an issue or wanted to upgrade to the fuel injection system and claim the old induction system on insurance. Somewhere between '54 and '56 he did get the engine bored to .020" over but didn't go for the 4" Mercury crank.

The Ardun engine number on my car was supposed to be 2036-Z. Not sure if that was stamped on the heads or engine or just a record keeping number.

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Old 03-29-2021, 06:11 PM   #35
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

Next correspondence between Sisler and TeBow
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File Type: pdf 102654 Sisler-TeBow 008.pdf (807.4 KB, 41 views)
File Type: pdf 11354 TeBow - Sisler010.pdf (237.5 KB, 31 views)
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Old 03-30-2021, 01:21 AM   #36
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

I did a quick inflation check. The $400 would be $3910 today.

Not bad, at all for the work requested.

I love reading this communication for that period!
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Old 03-30-2021, 05:24 AM   #37
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

For $400 . . . he should have taken him up on that deal! If so, maybe you'd still have an Ardun in the car.
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Old 03-30-2021, 01:50 PM   #38
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

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I did a quick inflation check. The $400 would be $3910 today.

Not bad, at all for the work requested.

I love reading this communication for that period!




Since today the actual work required would now fall under the title of specialty work. Taking that into consideration you should add an additional multiplier of 3 to the adjusted for inflation price. The now adjusted figure of $11,730 is more in line with the reality of today.
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First ever gas burning Ford flathead powered roadster to run 200 MPH at Bonneville Salt Flats setting the record August 7th 2021 at 205.744 MPH
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Old 03-30-2021, 05:28 PM   #39
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

The next letters are to and from the Crankshaft Company. I don't think Sisler used them or at least didn't stroke his engine as he later mentioned having a 3-3/4" stroke.
Thought it was interesting enough to waste a few electrons on. You can see what was available and how much it cost nearly 70 years ago.
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File Type: pdf 101254 Sisler-Crankshaft Co012.pdf (874.2 KB, 29 views)
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Old 03-31-2021, 05:50 PM   #40
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Default Re: Rebuilding an Ardun OHV 1954 - 1956

So the next big challenge is to find a good cam (66 years ago today). Scans have some other good info about valves, springs for the Ardun and other services from Iskenderian.
I know other grinds came out later that were probably better, but this is where things were at in '55.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 33155 Sisler-Isky001.pdf (696.3 KB, 25 views)
File Type: pdf 4555 Isky-sisler002.pdf (687.4 KB, 28 views)
File Type: pdf 4555 Isky hard face overlay003.pdf (1.41 MB, 24 views)
File Type: pdf 4555 Isky Top Tuner Tips005.pdf (1.30 MB, 31 views)
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