The pedal assembly and rear springs – Update #28

The pedal assembly has been stripped down and reconditioned, and the rear springs painted. After a ten week pause, work is under way again on reassembling the chassis.

Following eight weeks on crutches, Steve was given the go ahead to start putting weight on his leg.

So for the past two weeks, he has been slowly getting used to walking again in a moon boot. Although Steve faces months of physio and exercises, his main focus is getting back on to restoring the ’38 Texaco tanker.

The Master Cylinder


With the resleeved and rekitted master cylinder ready to be mounted on the chassis, Steve blasted and painted the cylinder bracket.


The master cylinder and bracket were bolted to the chassis as Steve picked up where he had left off ten weeks ago.

The Pedal Assembly


Steve took these shots of the complete pedal assembly prior to stripping it down.

The clutch pedal is clamped and fixed to the main shaft so that it is effectively one piece. As the clutch pedal is depressed, the shaft is rotated inside the pedal box / base bracket. Where the clutch pedal is fixed to the shaft, the spacer on the clamp bolt serves as the woodruff key.

The brake pedal, on the other hand, sits freely on the shaft and rotates independently.


Once the assembly was apart, the brake pedal revealed excessive wear in the cavity where the shaft goes through. What began as a perfect circular hole in the factory was now an elongated, oval shape. Steve took the brake pedal and the pedal box / base bracket to Mark at Marlin Tooling in East Tamaki for repairs.


In even worse shape was the main pedal assembly shaft which had suffered severe, extensive damage and wear over its lifetime. The two pieces of metal in front of the shaft are the remaining pieces of the bushes from the pedal box.

A metal plug, rather than a grease nipple, was inserted in the end of the shaft (shown on the left hand end). The possible lack of lubrication would account for the grinding away of the shaft’s surface.

The damaged shaft is yet another piece of the tanker’s 80 year story, representing the many years in service and the many miles travelled.


Mark at Marlin Tooling machined up a new shaft and a grease nipple was installed for future maintenance.


The pedal box / base bracket and the brake pedal were bored oversize at Marlin Tooling and both were reconditioned with bronze bushes to reinstate the original factory specs.


Steve trial fitted the machined components before taking the assembly apart again.


Each component was stripped and either painted or cad plated in readiness for rebuilding the assembly.


The restored pedal assembly was mounted back on to the chassis and connected up to the master cylinder.

The Brake Booster Breather / Air Cleaner


Connected to the Bendix brake booster is a breather / air filter supported on a dedicated bracket.


On top of the breather are two brass tags with different numbers embossed on each tag. We are unsure of the relevance of these numbers.


As part of the restoration process, Steve stripped down the breather and discovered what appears to be a horsehair filter inside.


The spun horsehair filter is a great little piece of history on its own, and the first of its kind that Steve has ever come across.


Steve stripped the breather casing and the bracket back to bare metal and then etch primed and painted them both. After reassembling the breather, he polished the brass tags and fitted the completed unit to the chassis using the original bracket.

The Brake Booster


The brake booster on the Diamond T is a Bendix Hydrovac unit.


Steve had painted the brake booster some time ago after it was completely overhauled with a new vacuum diaphragm kit fitted and the cylinder stainless steel sleeved.


The brackets were tidied up and painted, the brake booster mounted on the chassis and the restored breather /air cleaner connected.

The Rear Springs


The rear springs were etch primed months ago after being overhauled.


Steve took advantage of some fine weather and painted both the main rear springs and the helper / overload leaf springs.


Excessive wear is visible on the top leaf at each end of the helper / overload springs. Steve chose not to overhaul these springs as the tanker will never again carry the load it did when in service. He also likes the idea of leaving the worn top leaf of the helper springs on each side of the truck to tell a story of the hard wear and tear that the Diamond T endured over its lifetime.


Finally, the main rear springs and the helper / overload springs were fitted on each side of the chassis. It’s starting to look like a truck again!

Steve’s focus will now move on to the brake lines and the rear end.

We had the pleasure of having Chris (Starry) and Linda Malcolm stay with us over the first few weeks of the mandatory lockdown here in New Zealand.

Starry spent some of this time working with Steve on the chassis, and helping to lift the incredibly heavy rear springs. We are very grateful for his help with this (especially me!).

Now, almost at the end of week three of the lockdown, the Diamond T project is proving to be a wonderful distraction during these unsettling and unknown times.

We hope everyone is keeping safe and well.


Reassembly has begun – Update# 27


The Texaco tanker body preparation – Update # 29


  1. Looks very good!

  2. Richard

    most impressed

  3. Cam Lill

    Thanks Sue another great update and distraction as you say from the current situation!

  4. Ken Smith

    Just once again want to say “Thank You” for your interesting updates – much enjoyed.

  5. Steve Medley

    Glad to hear Steve is healing well. As always I love the updates.

  6. Craig Houston

    Looking great as usual Sue.

  7. Steve Brettell

    Interesting with great workmanship as usual, to hell with the virus the Diamond T is far more important and unique.

    • Sue Keys

      The truck sure is a great thing to focus on right now. Thanks Steve.

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