Topic: 1936 Ford Air Cleaner

spike31    -- 07-16-2011 @ 1:02 PM
  I recently bought a 1936 Ford Air Cleaner and am trying to restore it. It is the dry type and has several good dents in it. I'm trying to open it up to remove the dings and give it a good cleaning. It looks like it is a permanently sealed unit with only the top lid coming off. Is there some secret to getting inside of these? Thanks for your assistance!

supereal    -- 07-16-2011 @ 2:44 PM
  We have restored several types of air cleaners, and they can be tough to disassemble with out destroying them, as they are mostly crimped together, and made of light metal. Most can be cleaned by having them hot tanked at a shop. Getting big dents out can make the damage worse. You can sometimes pull them out by putting a sheet metal screw in the dent, then repairing the hole with Bondo, etc. If you are lucky, you can graually pry the seams enough to get them apart, but recrimping is tricky.

Stroker    -- 07-16-2011 @ 4:25 PM

I'd take a slightly different approach than my trusted advisor and friend, Doctor Supereal. If you have access to compressed air, my weapon of choice is an air cut-off wheel equipped with a 1/32" inch thick 3M "Green Corps" wheel-(see website below). These little cut-off wheels are really useful for restoration and fabrication tasks.

I would cut just inside the curved crimp on the bottom side, which will release the top, so that
you can "bump" it out. To reattach, either silver-solder (much less heat than brazing), or epoxy the top back on. No one will ever make you take the top off your air-cleaner, so the joint will not be an issue. Much easier than un-crimping, and attempting to re-crimp the top half of the top without special dies.

spike31    -- 07-16-2011 @ 7:32 PM
  Dear Stroker, Thanks for your reply....but I need a little clarity. When you say cut just inside of the crimp on the bottom side do you mean the underside of the seam that goes around the top portion of the filter near where the screen is? The crimped section is less than a quarter inch wide. Do you start your cut parallel to the seam on the body of the filter or perpendicular to the crimp right on top of it?

Regards, Spike

Stroker    -- 07-17-2011 @ 4:17 PM

The object is to release the top of the hollow filter top plate by cutting just inside of the
curved portion of the crimp on the bottom side. Obviously, you don't want this cut to show
when the air cleaner is re-assembled.


thirtysixford    -- 03-21-2012 @ 2:52 PM
  Just now reading this, I have been out for some time with family issues.
I tried to send you a PM, but you have it disabled. A little over a year ago I sent in a post called "K&N in a '36 air cleaner". Because it's over a year old, it won't show up in a search. It shows how I cut open one of these filters. May have some info you can use. Go to my profile on this post and look at my past posts.

supereal    -- 03-21-2012 @ 3:28 PM
  We don't grind the crimp between the cover and the element holder as it eliminates the need to weld or solder the pieces back together. You just recrimp the cover after inserting the "block off panel. Just carefully pry it down enought to release the holder, then bend it back all around. If carefully done, it will look good. Just be sure you work out any dents in the top before you recrimp.

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