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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my family's (now mine) 1930 Willys Knight 70B. My dad bought the car when I was 15 as an aniversary present for his parents (my grandparents) Me and my dad, mom, and sister restored it for my grandparents so they could take it on tours with the WOKR (Willys Overland Knight Registry est. 1960). The video is of when we brought it home and then after it was finished and the maiden tour (about 250 miles over 3 days). I also used it as my get away car when I got married. The car is now in my possesion. All the restoration was done by me and my dad, including paint, upolstry and even all the wood work. Enjoy!


 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well the engine was stuck from sitting. A good long soak with diesel and kerosene to free it up. Then a full tear down and inspection. The car only had 25,000 miles on it. The sleeves were in good shape as weill as the pistons. Bearings were in good shape as well so just a bit of honing and polishing up the surfaces and putting it back together was all that was needed. Of course all the gaskets were replace with something a bit more modern materials in them. Cleaned out the oil rectifier (like a early oil filter) Clutch and brakes relined, new bearings in the transmission, rear axle, and had to machine our own new king pins. Electrics were all rewired and the headlight refractors re chromed. Its still a 6 volt system. Adadabted a more modern/reliable Solex updraft carburetor. Also got the vaccum canister working correctly but have an electric fuel pump as a back up. Then onto the body and interior. The car was pretty much complete so not too many detail parts needed sourced (pre internet/ebay) All the wood had to be replaced. We sourced some blue prints for help and they were 1:1 which made building the replacements easier.
 

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How long did it take to restore that wonderful machine? Nice seeing older cars like that being restored and looking as good or better than they did from the factory.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The restoration took 5 years of off and on work. We farm by trade/occupation so the work/repairs on the farm take priority. This car is probably 90% factory accurate (pebble beach quality it is not) This car is meant to be driven as in we put about 500 miles a year on it and most of that is done over a continuous 3-5 day time period. So some things have been upgraded to modern materials. For example, all the leather seals replaced with something made with rubber. Clutch and brake linings re-lined with modern compounds. Back up fuel system (hidden). More modern carburetor, modern tires (still tube type though), electrics are probably the weakest link because the 6V genorator is gear driven off the secondary crankshaft(that operates the sleeves) so it was rebuilt and a a new voltage cut-out, wiring is modern wires that "look" old, new bulb sockets. Also we added some removable turn signals only because we kinda found out that people today don't understand hand signals (even though they are on any driving test)

The car is accutally has some modern-esque comforts/technology for its day. And its pretty powerfull our car has the small Knight 6 (56 horsepower) but they made a big 6 that made over 80 horsepower that was put into the roadster model.

12 gallon rear mounted fuel tank with vaccum canister type fuel pump. Ford, Chevy, Dodge, ect... had gravity fed 3-4 gallon tanks in the cowl area.

Shock absorbers, crude cavas strapping inside a recoil type housing (think pull start mechanisim with a heavy spring to control the leaf springs up and down motion) again Ford, Chevy, Dodge ect... had nothing.

Electric and crank handle starting, not a universal thing on all cars of the time.

4 wheel mechanical brakes, again most cars just had 2 wheel rear brakes.

Speedometer Volt meter, oil pressure, Coolant temperature, Fuell level gauges, again most cars either had none or just one or two of these gauges.

Willy's "finger tip control" a rotary switch mounted in the center of the steering wheel controled all the lights, horn and starter. press for electric (oooogah) horn, turn right and left for parking/head/driving/dome light, lift the button for the starter.

Interior dome light, again most cars didn't have one.

Oil rectifier, early attempt at an oil filter. it had screens for filter material and a anode type rod that was connected to the exhaust system that was to burn off the "coke" in the oil so it could settle to the bottom of the canister. This was before oils had any detergents and most engines needed torn down every 10,000 miles for "de-coking" The sleeve valve engines are notorious for going 50,000+ miles before needing tear downs and or cleaning.

Closed water pump circulatory cooling system, earlier cars of the day usually just had a open convection type cooling system so adding water/coolant/alcohol to the cooling system was routine maintence.

Distributor ignition, not as common on other vehicles of the day some (Ford) still used buzz coils for each cylinider.

I am kinda comparing the technology/features to the Models "T" and "A" aprox. retail price of those were $400-800 the Willys Knight 70 series retailed for $2200. I have some of the sales liturature and advertisements.
 

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It is so nice when you can find and learn more about your car and can find OEM paperwork and/or manuals.

I am upgrading mine with more modern paint and interior and will upgrade the powertrain as well. I am working on a theme for mine "What a 1977 Impala SS should have been from the factory."

Like yours mine is meant to be driven. I like seeing trailer queens but I will never own one.
 
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