Progress on the Tudor is rather haphazard lately—but progress is progress nonetheless, right? Right. Initially we'd figured on wrapping up the remainder of the steering, that being mounting and connecting of the steering column, among other things. Not having the body completely attached to the frame as of yet, we opted to postpone that portion for the time being. As it turned out, one of the main issues preventing us from properly/fully mounting the body was, of all things, the radiator.
Like most mid-1930s and earlier vehicles, radiators are integral to the grilles, which in turn are integral to the hood. However, unlike Henry's previous offerings prior to the Model 40s, where the radiators themselves are fairly straightforward in their relationship with the crossmembers they directly attach to, 1933-34s place their cooling apparatus forward of the front crossmember via sheetmetal "legs" (as opposed to directly on top of the crossmember). Had we used a factory FoMoCo frame with its stock, integrated radiator mount, there really would be no need for any discussion here. But we're not.
With its welded 1933-34 front crossmember, Speedway Motors provided sheetmetal "ears" for which to attach to our American Stamping–'railed frame and subsequently mount a reproduction-ish 1933 radiator we obtained from U.S. Radiator. (The addition of "ish" added to repro is simply due to the fact that the stock filler neck, though present—for mounting of the grille—is non-functional; the actual filler resides on the back side of the top tank. Further, the high-efficiency four-row copper-core unit is anything but stock, not only able to cool drastically better than original units, but aluminum-cored ones as well.) Rather than simply plopping the aftermarket radiator onto a crossmember, attaching a grille shell, and calling it a day, since the car will run a full hood, we had quite a bit of logistics to figure out.
First there was determining both the placement and angle of the mounts themselves. In order to accomplish this, the radiator itself had to be mocked in place—and in order to locate the radiator, both the hood and the grille had to be mocked in their respective places as well. This job started out necessitating more than one set of hands, to say the least, not to mention a variety of clamps. Furthermore, we had to procure a few specific attachment devices unique to 1933-34 Fords, such as the grille-to-radiator brackets and hood hinge mounts. Fortunately, CW Moss is but a few minutes down the street from Circle City Hot Rods, and a quick trip provided the necessary Vintique items to facilitate completing our erector set puzzle!
As you may (or may not, depending on the clarity of the images) notice, the Tudor's stock four-piece hood is not what you'd call pristine—far from it, to be quite honest. That said, the hood made the cut and will get used, as-is. What didn't make the cut, nor the trip from Texas with the rest of the body and related parts, were the inner fender panels, which were beyond repair. Again, with Model Bs/As, parts of this nature wouldn't matter for a highboy—with a 1933-34, the inner fenders are required in order to unite the hood sides with the frame. Locating a set of usable originals (for a reasonable price) proved unsuccessful, so a call was made to Steve's Auto Restorations for a pair of repops.
All said, by no means did we set out to achieve, nor attempt for that matter, perfect gaps on either side of the hood. Ultimately, the paint you see on the body now is the paint you'll see when the sedan's on the road in the not-so distant future. Jimmy White and I could have spent days fitting the hood and grille, but we didn't. Good enough is more than good enough for me.