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Z'ed, Z , ZEED FRAMES SIMPLIFIED TUTORIAL update Jan. 2012

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  • Member since
    February, 2010
Z'ed, Z , ZEED FRAMES SIMPLIFIED TUTORIAL update Jan. 2012
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, August 19, 2010 7:18 PM

 SEE THE END OF THE THREAD FOR NEW MATERIAL ON MILD MODEL-A ZEEING TECHNIQUE...........

 

Usually, IMHO, it's just not necessary to Z the front of a frame. Between dropped axles and the old suicide type spring perch, you can get a LOT of front end drop. However, sometimes there's a good reason to Z the front rails. Here's how to do both ends quickly and painlessly.

This chopped '32 gluebomb body on stock Revell rails is going to need the rear Z'd, and we're going to do the front at the same time. The procedure is basically the same. It's usually a good idea to plan where your Z will start, and this one in front is going to start exactly at the firewall. In a real car, this is really the best place. It's easiest to use this particular technique if you make the Z where the top and bottom of the rails are parallel.

The cuts for the Zeees will be the DIAGONAL lines. The vertical lines are for reference, and show where the Z starts relative to the body. I use a very fine Sharpie for the lines.

Transfer your cut and reference lines across both the top and bottom of the chassis. Make SURE everything is square at this point. If your lines get nasty, you can clean them off with isopropyl alcohol and start over.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, August 19, 2010 7:34 PM

 New post.....

At the rear, extend your cut lines up the floor sides and across the top. Make SURE your cut and reference lines are SQUARE and ACCURATE. Cut lines are the DIAGONALS.

Make your cuts. Cut across the top of the rear floor first, keeping the saw square across the floor and not going down into the rails. When you're just through the floor, CAREFULLY make your DIAGONAL cuts. Cut the front rails too. Take a file and TAPER the sides of the rear floor towards the rear of the car, as shown, for clearance.

Remember those reference lines? Glue your cut sections DIRECTLY ABOVE where they used to be. Make sure your diagonal lines are PARALLEL as you glue everything back together. Check everything for squareness from the top. You'll see that because we cut the rails on the diagonal and placed the cut ends directly above their original locations, the chassis is exactly the same length as it was, so the wheelbase ( distance between axle center-lines ) is the same. This technique gives you a QUICK and ACCURATE Z that's the depth of the frame at the point you cut it, and it avoids all the monkey-motion of making vertical pieces, etc, and the headaches of keeping all those pieces aligned.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, August 19, 2010 7:42 PM

 New post.....

Here's the chopped '32 shell on the newly Zeeed rails. Front Z starts nicely at the firewall, keeps the kinks out from under the engine, and out of the interior. Rear is plenty for a fair amount of drop. Rear rails can also be Ceeed over the rear axle if a little more lowering is wanted. Combine the front Z with a dropped axle or a suicide mount, and you can get the rails on the ground under the body shell. If you want even more drop in the rear, you'll have to use vertical spacer pieces between the cut rail ends and the original rails.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    July, 2004
Posted by pharr7226 on Thursday, August 19, 2010 7:47 PM

 Nice tutorial.  Thanks for posting it.

http://s187.beta.photobucket.com/user/pharr7226/library/

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, August 19, 2010 10:01 PM

PS.  With a little judicious adjusting of the angles at the glue joints, you can get a little more drop without screwing up the overall length and wheelbase.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    July, 2009
Posted by blackbettyhd on Friday, August 20, 2010 5:43 PM

 Makes things a lot easier than the way I was doing it

thanks

  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: SOUTH FLORIDUH
Posted by MikeMc on Saturday, August 21, 2010 2:45 PM

Well Done!! A good simple way to get started with basic hot rodding. I went past that a bit with these!!

HANG UP AND DRIVE........ Mike

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Saturday, August 21, 2010 3:14 PM

 Thanks MikeMc. You can get pretty radical with the simple Z in my tutorial...this is that same frame with a dropped axle under the stock cross-member, but a suicide mount would put the rails on the deck....

 


Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, October 07, 2010 6:28 PM

 A lot of you are Z-ing the front of frames and causing yourselves un-necessary work, so I thought I'd share how the real world drops a beam-axle front end most often. The little REAL '32 in these photos is as low as you can go and still DRIVE something. It's also NOT Z'd in the front. Note also how the engine in this truck sits nice and LOW between the LOW rails for a LOW center of gravity, not all sticking up in the air like a gasser. You don't want the engine sitting high on a street driven car, but when you Z the front, you run into header and other clearance problems that push the engine skyward.

This truck uses a severely dropped axle to get it down, with reversed spring eyes and a revised front mount, all old-school tricks of the trade.

The closer-up shot shows more of the suspension details. You don't have to go in for this much detail work, but you CAN get your noses on the ground without Z-ing the front by doing a little careful suspension rework, just like real. Or you can Z away if you want to, but it's rare in reality, and not necessary. But it's still a free country.


Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    December, 2004
  • From: Tampa, FL.
Posted by Jantrix on Saturday, October 09, 2010 3:56 PM

Thanks. I've yet to do this to a model yet. I've always just built a new chassis from stock. I'll bookmark this and give it a try.

Rob Geeked There is a nasty little four letter word for building something you're not interested in - work. And that's not what we do here. My Photo Album

  • Member since
    August, 2009
Posted by Spex84 on Thursday, October 21, 2010 5:11 PM

 I'm not 100% sure, but I suspect that the pickup shown above might actually have a "bleed sweep" on the front. There's a tut somewhere on these forums for creating a sweep. It can be messy, but the results are nice and subtle.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
Posted by ace-garageguy on Thursday, October 21, 2010 5:36 PM

 Hi Spex....you might be right, but if I had to bet, I'd bet on stock rails in front. I actually have been known to be wrong however. If you look at the '32 stock rails, they have a very noticeable upward "sweep" from the factory, and to my poor old tired eyes, it looks pretty close to the frame rail profile on the truck at the bottom of this thread. Another old-school trick was to substitute a model A front crossmember, if I recall correctly (again, I may be wrong) that would give an inch or so of drop. The axle on the pictured truck has a LOT of drop, when only 2 1/2 inches or so was the norm in the old days.If you just HAVE to cut the front rails, since the '32 has that nice "sweep", all you have to do is to take a cut from the bottom of the rails ALMOST all the way through to the top, and bend them up....then fill in the pie-slice shaped gap. This keeps everything aligned. On a real car you'd have to correct the angle the crossmember mounts at, somewhat.

 

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
ZEEEED FRAMES SIMPLIFIED TUTORIAL update Jan. 2012
Posted by ace-garageguy on Monday, January 16, 2012 8:04 PM

I hope nobody minds....I thought I'd bump this, as there have been a couple of guys looking for zeeing info lately. I'm including some new pics of a very mild zee on a model-A ('28 thru '31) frame too.

1) Too high, assembled as-is. Un-cool

2) Rear of floor removed for clearance...

3) Wedge-shaped sections added to rear of rails. Tallest part of wedge is as much as you want to drop the car. Rear crossmember is cut loose, moved UP relative to original rails, and glued back to ends of wedges. Extra material is removed, everything cleaned up. Wheel wells must be clearanced too.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    February, 2010
cont'd: ZEEEED FRAMES SIMPLIFIED TUTORIAL update Jan. 2012
Posted by ace-garageguy on Monday, January 16, 2012 8:08 PM

4)Everything assembled and sitting right....

5) Nice tight fender to tire clearance. Very cool.

Plan your work, work your plan.

Measure twice, post once.

  • Member since
    October, 2009
Posted by southpier on Wednesday, September 12, 2012 8:21 AM

looks more better

  • Member since
    August, 2009
Posted by Ragnar on Wednesday, September 12, 2012 10:25 AM

Looks Good Down There in the weeds, nice tutorial

CHEERS!

Tom

 Old Hot Rodders are Like Old Hot Rods, We may not be as Fast as The New Guys, But We Got There First!

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