1959 Autocar

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By roKWiz - 7 Years Ago
Welcome PickerRun.
Really great looking truck you have. Don't know anything about these, so will be watching your build with interest.
Intergrated sleeper, Dima in Europe will like this one I'm sure.
By Slim 3979 - 6 Years Ago
Mr PickerRun,
 We are really enjoying your rebuilt  and so far we haven't even got our hands dirty yet.  Keep us posted.

By ScottM - 7 Years Ago
If you happen to need to know anything about the transmission I do have the service manual for it, I can look up what you need, I have a couple different versions, but I don't know what years they were published.

From the book: Service Manual Fuller Models RT-9513 Series

R = Roadranger Transmission
T = Twin countershaft type
O = Indicates overdrive
OO = Indicates double overdrive
F = Included in letter designation, such as RTOF-9513, denotes forward position of the gear shift lever control: shorter distance between face of clutch housing and centerline of gear shift lever housing; gear shift lever knob approximately 4 1/2" forward of gear shift lever housing centerline when in neutral.

From the next page in the book, they specify the torque capacity as 950 lb.-ft; according to the RT-913 book that I have, the first numeral multiplied by 100 gives the torque capacity, in the case of the RT-913 that is 900 lb.-ft.  I think we could safely assume that the 95 in the RTOOF-9513 should be read as one number and multiplied in this case by 10 to give a torque capacity of 950 lb.-ft.

PickerRun (7/20/2015)

QUIZ anyone?  Remember there are no wrong answers. Feed back wanted. Scrap heap is not out of the question.

By Brad K - 7 Years Ago
Looking forward to seeing your progress!  I was hoping to get my truck out to a show this weekend, but I still have the dash torn apart and sitting on my living room floor, and kitchen floor, and kitchen table, and counter, and garage floor...
By Brad K - 7 Years Ago
If you were to go with option 2-4, you'd be tearing the entire truck apart.  If doing that, would it be possible, or cost effective, to have the corrosion repaired and the frames heat treated?  I thought these frames were 6061-T6 anyhow.  Why would option 2 be parade truck?  Is it because you would be using a standard size channel and not the original size?  Is option 3 even possible?
By Brad K - 7 Years Ago

I don't see why the tensile strength would matter.  The aluminum channel is huge compared to the steel, it's nearly 3/8" thick and 12" tall.  A steel frame is what, 6 or 8" and only about 3/16 thick?  They should have equivalent load capacities if in good shape.

By idshred - 7 Years Ago
Pickerrun, I was in a similar situation as you this last winter/spring with the frame rails on my 76 peterbilt. My .02 would be to take your rails all the way out and clean the corrosion up, see what you have left, and then decide what to do from there. If you really could poke a hole through with a punch they could be past the point of saving. I decided to clean/reuse my rails. It was a LOT of work. But I feel like I did a proper job and the truck is currently grossing 80000 on a daily basis hauling wheat and barley during harvest. If you'd be interesting in hearing what I did/what products I used let me know.
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago

This A10264 was my Grandfathers. He is laughing now.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
It is going to be a long road for sure. It is aluminum. Has a 335 Cummins with a cracked block and bad rod. Landed a 350 Cummins that is going to go in one of these days. Then lots of time with a MIG. Somewhere in the fray I have to locate a passenger side windshield, and hoping that I can have a glass company cut me some flat glass for the rear window, side vent window and sleeper (if you can call it that)
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
So far
-Aluminum front motor mount from 335 will not work for 350, and is cracked, welded and fish plated.
-Rear motor mounts won't work with 350, new ones on the way
-Radiator is shot
-Frame cracked where pillow block is attached
-Bell housing for 350 to Fuller 13 speed needs to be located and installed
-That power steering unit in the foreground is just there for laughter


By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
Had fun taking it apart, only have 6 bolts to drill out and re-tap, the not so fun part is what they want for a new core.
I am going to give myself some lessons on polishing aluminum shortly.
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago

$800 to $1200 is what they are telling me. Lots of elbow grease and a corner to stitch up with a welder.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago

On the bell housing / transmission, the way I understand it there are two bell housings that will fit this transmission (See Dinosaur post), SAE #1 and SAE #2. I have a 2 and need a 1. We will have to switch the input shaft which shouldn't be to big of a deal. The frustrating part is to find a bell housing, set 350 in place, stick questionable tranny in place, make new driveline to new air ride and find out dinosaur is no good.
 As far as the radiator, it did not leak, but the fins were to non existent on the rear. The top tank broke in a corner, it spans 2 bolts. It was held in place by the gasket until I separated it.

By PickerRun - 2 Years Ago
It has been too long! For all of the effort Autocar went through to make a lighter truck using aluminum, they could have shaved a few pounds off the cab. My very nice neighbor who owns the forklift was surprised at how much this tub weighs.
By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago

It looks like progress.

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago

Here is a video of a 5/8" hole being drilled through 5/16" grade 100 steel. So much easier than jobber bits. I set the phone on the top of the rail looking down. Using a cutting compound on the bit.

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago

I never would have guessed the amount of feed back a guy could get on this drilling topic. As far as all the comments, more information is better! Its crazy the science that goes into drilling holes.

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago
Here is a question for you Auto Car guys. There is a cross member that aligns with the rear motor mounts. I don't know if it was added when it got the 335 or if it is standard?
That C channel just looks out of place.

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago

The Big Cam was stuffed in the frame rails last weekend, and I was too dumb to snap any pics. The test was worth while, and as usual, provided for a lot of head scratching. I messed up the front motor mount that I took out of the donor truck, so I tracked down a motor mount from a late FLD. This has 1" less drop than the original. There must be a rear motor mount that will work better that the ones I have because the current ones would sit on the top of the frame rails.

Another observation was that the flange had to be cut down for the big girl. So I took the leap on that.
I hope this turns out.
Next step is to make the drop in the frame for the radiator to sit.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
Do you think this transmission will stand up to a small / big cam 350, that came from a 90s Volvo? I will get looking for some numbers off it this weekend.
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
Here is a question up for grabs.
I think I'm going to get new steel rails from PG Adams, anyone have some thoughts on thickness. I plan on bouncing down the road with 80K.
Options are:
-3/8" I'm pretty sure 1/2" is overkill even by my standards.
Also what style of cross members
Options are:
-C Channel
-3 Piece
I would think that the thickness of the frame should match the thickness of the cross members, but maybe there is a reason to have say a 5/16' frame rail and a cross members that are 1/4"
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
So its on to the transplant. I now have a shiny pair of 25' frame rails in the dimensions of a Freighliner FLD (which is what the donor suspension came from), 3 cross members, and a mag drill. If that isn't a recipe for success or heart break I don't know what is. At least it is starting the other direction, the expensive direction.
This is pretty over whelming to a guy that doesn't do this for a living or even for a hobby. Sounds like I should start with the cross members in a perfectly square frame, then attach the rear suspension, then move to the rear motor mounts and work forward to fabrication of front motor mount, after that slip the cab on loose and start lining everything up before final attachment of the cab mounts, then removing the cab for some body work. See any flaws in this approach??
I should have time for opener of bow season!
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
http://forums.justoldtrucks.com/uploads/images/41210266-bf76-4565-8c7e-9ef7.bmpThis is the animal I have, and HSS annular cutters, the carbide were going to take 1 month to get.
Thank you for the advice on how to approach this. I may have a problem slipping one rail out at a time because they are so different in size. The aluminum rails are 2 1/2" taller in the web and 1" wider in the flange and thicker by almost 1/2" at points of double frame than the steel.
By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago
So after all the advice that was offered, this it what happened. I started off marking the centers of the old rails. Then used a plasma to cut the flanges off the old rails. That was working really nice until I let the smoke out of the plasma cutter. Finished them off with the torch and ground the slag on the edges so the pattern would lay on the new rails nice and flat. The plan was to set the pattern on the new rail align the center marks, clamp and make metal shavings.  Mag drills don't like to stick to anything that isn't nice and clean so on the first hole the annular spun out and burnt up. The plan then evolved to making a very light center mark using 3/4" and 5/8" drill bits through the template, then removing the template and center punching the marks. This plan made the mag drill pay off.
Old rail used for template
I started drilling using Unibore bits. These bits are not for drilling this type of steel as it turns out. They ran smooth, but the shavings would be thinner and thinner until they just stop cutting making a nice work hardened hole.

Work hardened hole when bit stopped drilling.

Not knowing if it was operator error on cutting pressure / feed rate, my brother bought me a new set of Unibore bits. I proceeded to make the record 13 holes and burnt the new set up. This is getting expensive! Took a shot on some cheaper Evolution bits and that paid off big. They are a number or two harder on Brinell scale. They are hard to keep in a sweet spot but just keep cutting. On the holes that spun out we ended up just drilling them with twist bits, these proved to be too much for the Evolutions. I was told that it is possible to heat them to red then spin the annular back through the started hole, but didn't want to risk the base of the mag drill.
The moment of truth!!! Would any of the holes line up. First rail, no problem.

2nd rail, no problems either! So far so good.

By PickerRun - 6 Years Ago
Had a pretty successful weekend. It sure is nerve racking not knowing if there are things being overlooked. Hope she doesn't look like an old hound going down the road.

Rolled the front axle into place for fit up. This was a process. The axle is from a 90's Volvo, which is pretty close to what was in the old Acar. The trouble is there are a ton of variables. Its hard to float the whole axle level into place, I would say next to impossible. So there was a lot of compensation for the floor not level, tires not the same size, springs and bushings being worn.
We rolled the axle into place, measured from the front of the rail to the front spring shackle, clamped it in two directions and moved the opposite side into place and did the same. This would give an idea of how good or bad the whole assembly was sitting. Then marked the holes and rolled that ugly cuss back out of the way to drill the holes. Moved it back into place and bolted it. then with a few jacks lifted the rears up into place and measured from the front shackles to the rear swing shackles. Clamped then marked and drilled.
I have no idea if that was accurate enough but that is all we could come up with.
By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago

QUIZ anyone?  Remember there are no wrong answers. Feed back wanted. Scrap heap is not out of the question.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
Here is a pic of my front motor mount. We were thinking of taking a pair of C channels and welding them back to back.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
Loosing the walking beam.
Here come the aluminum skills that I don't have yet.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago


The frame is of parade quality if not worse, which leaves a couple options as I can see. I like option 3, but I like to see what others would do.
   1- Spend $1000 dollars in electricity and filler and start welding = Parade truck
   2- Spend $1000 dollars and replace the frame rails with 6061 or 2024 = Parade truck
   3- Contact a company that will make new aluminum frame rails, at unknown cost to exceed $1000 = 1959 80K Roadrunner
   4- Go steel, use old aluminum parts to make new steel parts = 2015 /1959 80K Hybrid thing

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
I highlighted the crack in yellow. It is through both the main frame and the inner frame. You can get a feel for how deep the corrosion is where the 5th wheel was. I bet that a punch and a hammer would poke a hole in the flange in some spots.

By PickerRun - 7 Years Ago
She is pretty much torn apart at this point, so that doesn't worry me too much.
From what I can find
 6061 T6 has a yield of 40K and tensile strength of 45K
Steel from PGAdams link on this site yields at 80K or 100K and a tensile strength of 95K or 110K
I just don't trust option 2 based off of the numbers above, the last thing I want is to break in half or worse yet hurt other motorists.
I am waiting for a response back from an outfit in Chicago on option 3, (big bucks too) somehow I think they are going to tuck tail because it's for a road application. Off road would be a different story.

By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
1500.00 $ last year for a core about that size for a low mount Pete, thats a little excessive.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
The bell housing from the 335 will fit the 350 and you won't have to deal with new mounts,but you'll have to dial indicate the housing to the crankshaft.
Whats the matter with the core, a leaker or plugged.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
Flywheel housing wouldn't have anything to do with the front mount.
The 350 he has most likely has the 3 bolt bolt on brackets on the side, the 335 had the 1 bolt ear that is part of the housing.
 I don't remember what transmission was behind the 335 but that bell housing will fit the 9513 you want to put in, swapping the flywheel housing, to me is easier than putting the mounts on the frame for the later housing, the orginal rear mounts are already in place so all that needs to be done is build a front cross member for the front mount set the engine to 3 or 4 degrees with a jack under the front end  and bolt the new front mount in.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
3x3 or 4x4 box tubing might work in your case, then weld the rad support on the front and if you don't have the bottom mount for front motor mount bracket you could build that also, I don't have a picture of one but you might be able to see what it looks like in the other thread, it has holes for the two rubber grommets to set into as they are step type grommets.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
Thats a tough one to call,whats the frame like now,is it corroded and flaking, the flaking usually looks worse than it is,clean it off and run a sanding pad over it and you can feather in the edges and will hardly see it,should that be the case, or has it been cracked and broke then repaired,or full of bolt holes,repairing this one may be the most simple way to go,buying new alum rails is expensieve, steel not so bad,you've got it about right for 1000$, but all the holes will need to be drilled, and thats another chapter.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
Steel rails can be had in just about any thickness and height needed, 5/16 being pretty popular, but 3/8 is used quite a bit, with it you don't need a glove unless your in a heavy haul or off road application.
 That crack is kinda standard with pad suspension, thats from the brackets working side to side to cause them to crack between the ears, drill the ends have it welded up clean the rest of it off and put a 1/4 or 5/16 glove inside and carry on, or find rails in a salvage yard with the suspension you want and cut and weld behind the cab where your frame is good.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
Did you get  a mag drill or a rotor broach, the mag broach is  a lot nicer to use,you don't need pilot holes.
I was shown that to drill frames the easy way with no measuring is to take one of the old rails lay it upside down on  a new rail get to all squared up and then using transfer punches mark the holes you need,cab brackets,motor mounts,fuel tanks,steps,whatever,  across to the new rail,then take the new rail flip it upside down on the other new rail and transfer the needed holes  across to that rail, if you have the cut off pieces of the Freightliner rails use one of those pieces in the first set up.
 You don't need to take the whole truck apart if you don't want to just take one rail out of it,lets say you pull the right rail out of it,lay it back to back on the new left rail along with the right side of Freight liner rail in the position you want for the wheel base,once the holes are drilled in the new left rail set it back to back on the new right rail and transfre those across and drill them.
 I've done this and there is very few holes that you'll need to measure and put in if you don't change things around too much.
By Aaron - 7 Years Ago
I tear the truck down if I'm replacing rails like your doing,when you get the new rails drilled and mounted on the axles you can blast and paint a rolling chassis and its done, then go on to the cab and other parts that need to be repaired, the only time I would pull one rail at a time would be just to replace like for like and not a restoration.
Keep us posted on what you do.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
Looks like you definitely have something to work with. That should turn out real nice. If that has a steel frame it sure would look good with 2 or 3 ft more wheel base. However if it is aluminum it will be just fine as is. Those with the integral sleeper are getting rare I think. Should be one you can be proud of when you get it done.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
Aaron, I am wondering if he needs to go to the new style bell and mounts so he can use the 350 front mount. Since he has the same A-car as the other fellow on here with front mount problems. Possibly we can solve the problem for both of them. Just a thought.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
So the trick is to build a new front cross member to get the angles right. Am I understanding this correctly? It appears that we have 2 A-Cars with the same problem so I just hope we can solve it. I personally have never done the switch on the engine mounts.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
Other option is to fab one up from plate. The advantage there would be possibility to get creative and make gussets where you deem necessary. Of course one can over think it too. lol
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
There is no doubt in my mind. I would call PG Adams. 5/16 x 10 1/2 are good up to 280 wheel base. If you don't already have one I recommend a magnetic slug cutter from Milwaukee. They are around 1100 on Amazon and will come from Northern Tool.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
It definitely indicates a double over with turned around top 2 which at that time was the only way double was offered. I would highly recommend putting an isolater in the gear shift as they did sing real good. The 95 will handle a 335 easy and if you don"t pre-select the synchro's will last quite well.  I certainly would not scrap it. We used that transmission for a lot of miles and it is the series that put road ranger on the map. 9513 and 9510 ruled for a few years till we got higher torque motors like the 1693 cat and the big cam cummins.
By wayne graham - 6 Years Ago
I am with Steve, definitely not being critical. I have done the job you are doing and you are to be complimented sir. It is looking good.
By wayne graham - 6 Years Ago
If I remember right that was a problem area on the alum frame on A-car. That may have been a fix to solve the problem. That is a stress point at the mounts. KW and Pete both used a cross piece in the same area. Yours looks like it was added but I don't really know.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
It will be fine for a hobbu truck or if you drive it yourself. I know guys that ran that set up forever. Nothin wrong with a 125 but I would not run out and buy one unless you just want to spend money. lol
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
Sounds like you got a plan of action and we all like it when a plan comes together. I did this very job on one of my A model KW's. What I did was cut the flange off the old rails with a plasma cutter. You can do this with a torch too. Then lay the remaining web inside your new rail and you have a template for your drill.  I highly recommend the annular cutters for your drill. You will get about 50 holes on a sharpening in hard steel if you use good cutting compound.  Any good tool sharpening shop can sharpen them. If you use the old web for a template your hoes should be right to get the cross members in square. The frame is like a ladder and once the members are in square the rest is just drilling and mounting. Like you said, put the axles under it first and then build the truck. It is really quite interesting once you get into it. Good luck and keep us posted. Will be here on the off chance I can offer something helpful. Wayne
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
Aaron, That definitely works and I guess it is a matter of choice. I do it as I described cause it eliminates flipping it over and I just find it easier to keep my head on straight that way. I think rotary broach and annular cutter are the same thing. nick name for them is slug cutter named after the Yancy drill. You are correct about doing one rail at a time. definitely allows ont to keep the truck somewhat together.
By wayne graham - 7 Years Ago
You will be fine with those cutters. By the way you can get them at Fastenal among others fyi. The frame rail thing will require you to put on your thinking cap. It is definitely easier to do one at a time as you only have to block up the engine and trans  and hold up one side of the cab at a time but it is definitely your business. your circus and your monkeys. lol
By wayne graham - 6 Years Ago
It may be an optical illusion with the camera but it strikes me that the drill could stand to be slowed somewhat. just my thoughts. I still like the annular cutters better than twist drills.
By wayne graham - 6 Years Ago
Tony, It is hard to tell on camera but I believe my Milwaukee slugger turns slower. No big deal except cutter life.
By Wolfcreek_Steve - 6 Years Ago
All in all, that video is acceptable speed and feed. You don't want to make purple chips from speed and feed, but you want to push hard enough to cut nice clean stringy chips, as opposed to flakes and powdery chips.
By Wolfcreek_Steve - 6 Years Ago
Even the 395 rpm won't be a problem for a 5/8 cutter, but as Tony said .001 per tooth is the minimum feed. I've seen a lot of people in industry that don't understand the feed per tooth thing and not feed hard enough to get good tool life.
BTW PickerRun, I don't think anyone here is trying to bust your chops, you didn't weld the cutter into a hole and (as Marsha Stewart would say) that is a good thing.
By Jeff Lakaszcyck - 7 Years Ago
That's a great old Acar. How about some more info and pictures ?
By Tony Bullard - 6 Years Ago
The trick to bit longevity in tough and high tensile strength material if keeping the speed in surface feet per minute less that 100. For a 3/4" bit that is about 500 rpm. I usually shoot for 80 fpm. Also you need to keep a steady and even feed rate. If you relieve pressure on the bit so it is not cutting but just rubbing it quickly generates heat and case hardens the cutting surface which can make it next to impossible to start cutting again. This means don't stop to clear the chips; just keep going and relieve pressure just as the bit starts to break through. Coolant is also important weather it be from the machine's own system or a trigger squirt bottle like I use. I use Lenox Saw Master, a water base synthetic fluid for cooling and lubricating. 
By Tony Bullard - 6 Years Ago
I believe those drill motors are brush type and produce no torque at synchronous or no load speed. They have to be lugged down to produce torque. The motor it self probably turns 5 to 10,000 rpm and is geared down to reduce drill speed and multiply torque. That is how they get a lot of HP out of a small package.
By Tony Bullard - 6 Years Ago
PickerRun if your Slugger is MODEL: #06920 you are feeding it way too slowly (in my opinion) for the power you have. Even a feed of .001" per tooth (6 teeth?) at at your full load speed of 280 you should have been through the 5/16" plate in 11 seconds. Even if you feed it at .0005 which is getting very close to "rubbing" it would have been 22 seconds.

Here's a calculator that may help but don't exceed your HP..
Hougen Speed and Feed Calculator
By Tony Bullard - 6 Years Ago
Wolfcreek_Steve (1/20/2016)
Even the 395 rpm won't be a problem for a 5/8 cutter, but as Tony said .001 per tooth is the minimum feed. I've seen a lot of people in industry that don't understand the feed per tooth thing and not feed hard enough to get good tool life.
BTW PickerRun, I don't think anyone here is trying to bust your chops, you didn't weld the cutter into a hole and (as Marsha Stewart would say) that is a good thing.

Thank you, Steve. I try to never be critical but as hard as I may I’m still not very diplomatic. I’ve been aware of this ever since I’ve been on the forums and have many times booted myself in the butt after posting.

By Eddy Lucast - 7 Years Ago
RustBlast will eat it's way thru corrosion as well as it does rust.
By Eddy Lucast - 6 Years Ago
When you polish the aluminum rad shell watch for pits in the aluminum. If they are result of the casting process as fast as you sand them out you'll likely have more pits appear, polish what you have and smile.
By Eddy Lucast - 2 Years Ago
Thanks for the update you've come a long ways and I know it wasn't easy or without $$.