To me building a hot rod or custom car is all about building with what you’ve got, using some ingenuity, and making things from scratch. Sure you can point and click with your mouse and buy a “hot rod in a box” from online vendors, but I think that those cars lose the soul that makes a hot rod so dang cool. Recently I built a chassis for a 1930 Ford Model A coupe I’m putting together and I needed to make some simple motor mounts to attach the Flathead to the chassis. I know you can buy some, but where’s the fun in that?! I decided to show a simple way to make some mounts from scratch.
First I started by measuring approximately how far the mounts would need to stick out from the frame and cut off two lengths from the left over tubing (2″X3″X1/4″) from the frame.
I then drew a curved line on the side of the box tubing to simulate the side profile of the mount. This just gave me a guide to use when rough-cutting the tubing into a wedge shape using a band saw.
The angle grinder with a 40 grit flap disc made quick work of grinding the shape into the one side of the mount. I blended the shape in and rounded the edges by eye until I was happy. I then made a paper pattern of the first side and copied the curve on to the other sides. After I was happy with the shape of the mounts I ground a heavy bevel into the edges of the mount that would be welded to the chassis. This will give us proper penetration when welding.
With both mounts made I moved them over to the chassis and clamped them in place under the tabs on the engine. This allowed me to square and level them in preparation for welding. I scribed witness marks into the mounts and the chassis so I could remove them to prepare the frame for welding in that area.
I chose to use the TIG 200 AC/DC to weld the mounts in place because I wanted the additional control when welding, but a MIG welder could have done the job too. I first ran a “root” pass connecting the mount to the chassis. I then ran a second pass to fill the beveled seam and to make the weld flush with the top surface of the frame and motor mount. The weave weld pattern allowed me to fill the small recess left in one pass.
Finally I was able to remove my clamps holding the mounts in place and center punch the holes for the mounts. I drilled corresponding holes and dropped my rubber test mounts in place to make sure everything fit correctly. The result is a “factory” looking motor mount that cost me $0!