A popular place to put the Ruckstell shifter is in the rear of the floorboard slot that houses the parking brake lever. This allows easier entrance and exit from the car. The Ruckstell supplied shifter places it in the center of the floor board which can be awkward at times.
The Ruckstell Axle was one of the few Ford factory approved accessories for the Model T. Indeed, it is every bit as useful today as it was when introduced in the time just after WWI by Hall Scott. Without a doubt it is the single most useful accessory ever devised for the Model T Ford. Many books and magazine articles have been written about the Ruckstell Axle. No question the best of these books is the one written by Glen Chaffin of Corona, California. It is the “bible” of Ruckstell repair.
The weakest part of the Model T Ford design is the rear axle. OK, sure, it was well designed for its time, and perfectly adequate when the car was new. The fact is, if any part of it fails, the car won’t go forward, and it won’t stop either. People have been killed or injured because their rear axle failed in a Model T.
This article is about the drive shaft assembly. We are going to rebuild it as a Ford mechanic would have done back in the day. First let’s take it apart and see what we have to work with.