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1943 T-24 Restoration Thread


Patrick Tipton
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Spent a few hours yesterday fixing damage to the rear panel around the shovel bracket.  Came out fine.  Welded the corner but don't love the welds - serviceable but they don't look quite right.  Need to pick up a little more welding gas and will grind and do it over or I might run a TIG torch over it and see if I can get it looking right.  Operator error & fatigue!

Onward!

 

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For the record, straightening out this cockpit coaming on these vehicles is some kinda challenge!  Someone cut and bent over the driver section and a corresponding section on the "passenger front" side.  I have the driver side nearly straight and am just starting the passenger side.  With the hull side, spot welds and hat channels all working against fixing this area, I am getting schooled here! 

Sure looks good with the windshield temporarily mounted.😍

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Fixed most of the distortion on the passenger coaming (still need to weld it up) and got the bow trimmed and welded.  We also test fit the brush guard.  FWIW - the T24 brush guard is a bit different - this is an M29 version but I have a T24 guard lined up.

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@Patrick TiptonPatrick, that is certainly an unusual spot to have to repair. I wonder if they cut out that section to fit another radiator in????? Who knows? I like your attention to detail. It is indeed a good time now to make sure that the ventilator lid does fit. I see that your ventilator lid has had a notch cut out of it to accommodate the Accelerator mod kit. Keep up the good work. Cheers JW

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@OZM29CThanks John.   Indeed a strange modification but I suppose, if I could not install the radiator through that opening and had the option of pulling the motor or making a little mod like that...I could see making this decision.  It turned out to be far easier to repair than I expected.  Yes - on the lid modification - another kind of challenging repair.  The lid itself should be easy enough to form - the worst is the very small hat channel.  I am probably going to have to make some tooling to press something out. 

.....now I just may have sourced a good nearly NOS one.....😄

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@Patrick TiptonLooking good Patrick. Can I offer a suggestion for the fuel tank hat channels. Before you permanently weld them in position, just temporarily tack weld them in place and then test fit your fuel tank before proceeding further. I am speaking from experience 😀😀😀 

Fuel Tank Test Fit.jpg

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Last patch on the hull.  I still have a few dents and some old repairs to cleanup but WOOOHOOO!

This one was a pain...hard to get the metal inside of the hat channel clean prior to repair.  I am going to treat these hat channels with something before I prime this hull.  Not sure what...but a rust converter/protector that I can spray in the upper and lower hat channels and the 45 degree side gussets (already sprayed with cold galvanizing compound.  There are several holes that look factory so the plan is to feed a tube (maybe with a nozzle) and spray/drip/feed in something.  This thing should not spend any time outside, but it will still get some hot/cold cycles so anything I can do to protect it will help.

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One more dent gone.  I used a slide hammer/pin welder and shrinking disc to fix this little side swipe/scrape in the middle of the passenger side of the hull.  Episode 116 on my Youtube channel is all about it if you have any interest.  I have a few areas in the front to repair and a couple of holes/dents in the back panel and this hull is going to be ready for paint.  I started in last January of 2020 so not fast, but not bad...

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@Patrick TiptonI am sure that you are really looking forward to getting to the end of this conga line of hull repairs. You are almost done👍👍 I left a few minor blemishes in my hull, I guess to reflect the age of the vehicle. Do you have the air drop brackets and fittings? Please keep the pictures and comments coming?

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Yes I am, although I must admit that I kinda enjoy the tin bashing part.  I will keep posting for sure....through the first drive in any event...and I may have another Weasel project (or two) in the wings 😬😂 

I just picked up a nearly complete set of original parachute brackets.  I think I am missing one of the inside brackets (not hard to fabricate) - I am extremely excited to have them.  I am pretty much finished with collecting T24 parts except original undercarriage - the bogie brackets and such were different but for now I am proceeding ahead with the later ones and am hoping they will work with the 15 inch tracks....

Thanks again John!

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One of the challenges of making the new side was figuring out the flat pattern, sourcing a piece of 18 gauge that was large enough and then finding someone with a big enough brake to bend it.  I ended up with a 10 foot sheet - which would be long enough if I could have purchased a parallelogram instead of a rectangle - but is just a little short due to the taper of the Weasel hull.  After lots of head scratching, I ended up bending it in such a way that I was short - a small and long triangle - by about 1/2 inch in the inner rear corner of the hull and about a similar amount in the front bow section.  I added metal to the front before we installed the side, but the rear had a corner doubler and better (flat) access, so I waited to finish this part.  This writeup took longer than the repair!

I also redid the front welds - my Rube Goldberg rotisserie mount was in the way the first time I did it, or my welding skills failed me (maybe a bit of both)...in any event, this came out much better.

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@Patrick Tipton Once again Patrick you have excelled yourself. The finishing work will take a lot longer than you think. Here's one check to do while you are at this stage. I ran the rear marker lamp wire yesterday and the wire was contained/supported by a series of very light gauge sheet metal retaining tabs. The wire runs down the passenger side inside the channel and then crosses the hull at the rear. It might pay to check that all of the wiring tabs are in place. Without them the wire loom will just flop down and look unsightly. 

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Thanks John.  I know where some of those tabs are...will check for the rest of them!  I also need to fabricate a bunch of the steel tabs that hold the insulation panels in place....plenty left yet to do.

You burning petrol down there?🤣

Regards, Patrick

 

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42 minutes ago, Patrick Tipton said:

 

You burning petrol down there?🤣

Regards, Patrick

I am resisting the temptation to drive the weasel as like you, I still have a number of jobs to do on it. As an example I need to install the demolition box, the rear floor pan and the headlight bulb. I also need to do a complete grease of the suspension, bogey wheel bearings and the idler/drive wheel hubs. Yes from what I can see my weasel does have a voracious appetite for fuel. I will need to put another 20litre drum of fuel in it before I take it for another run. I can take photos of the wiring tabs if you can't find a suitable example over your way. Cheers

 

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Gents - spent a little more time cleaning up the lower hull...just little details and then put the hull back on the rotisserie.  I need to make some rolling outriggers for this hull so I can put it on a trailer easily and move it over to a friend's shop to have him primer it. 

Topside, I still have a bunch of details, like removing the Norwegian stretcher brackets (accomplished), fixing a few more dents front and back and making new pioneer tool brackets and installing them.  My goal is to have everything done by the end of the month and be working on the running gear.

I shot a little primer on last's weeks side repairs to get a better side view.  I am happy with the repairs and the new floor seam...I think it will be hard to see any of these repairs when the hull is back together.

 

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Amazing work Patric, I love seeing the progress. John is right regarding the weak wiring tabs spot welded to the hull, I’d make sure they are all there and if some are weak replace them. If you want pictures of all tabs, I’d be happy to send them to you.

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