1937 Terrapalne 212 info

Good afternoon Ladies and Gents. This is my first post to the forum. I have recently come into the ownership of a 1937 Terraplane coupe. It does have the engine and trans in it and it spins over by hand. It has been rebuilt and has .010 over pistons and no ridge on the upper cylinder(yes the head is off). I am getting ready to put the head back on and put the exhaust and intake back on as well. Waiting for a carb kit. I am going to see if it will start and if it has any terrible noises. 
   I have worked on a wide block that was in my 52 wasp when I had it but this 212 is quite a bit different. 
My question- could I get a run down of the 212. is it reliable,  is there anything inherently problematic that I can look/listen for. Any pointers on the distributor/ignition or cooling system or the oiling system.
Maybe some info on converting to 12 volts as there is no wiring so I will have to rewire. 
Generator to alternator conversion. 
I know this was a basket of questions but there isn't a lot of info on the 212 like there is on the wide blocks.
   Thank you for any info or help.


  • 7XPacemaker7XPacemaker Posts: 400Senior Contributor
    Where did you get your carb kit from? I would like to be able to answer your questions but am new to splashers as well. I am in the process of waking up the engine in my 39 too!
  • Jon BJon B Posts: 7,078Administrator
    edited June 24
    First, welcome to the Open Forum.  You will find quite a few people here who are knowledgeable in the "three by five", 212 cid splashers.  The engine dates back to 1929, so the technology is definitely of that era.  It doesn't like high revs, and with the stock rearend gears you will find that it's straining somewhat at 50+ mph.  However, Hudson owners have found ingenious ways to coax 60+ mph cruising speeds out of the engine by replacing rearend gears or even entire rear axles, or by installing overdrive transmissions.  Beyond that, you could consider a more modern engine (a Hudson Jet 6-cyl. fits nicely in the engine compartment, or you can always go "Brand X").  But it's fun to take the challenge to keep as much as possible of the original components.  For example, I have wedged an overdrive into my '37 with the original rearend, and can cruise at 60 mph all day.

    As to 12 volts....well, you can switch over of course, but the original 6 volt system will work fine unless you have a lot of 12-volt accessories you need to run.  I've been running 6 volts on mine for 47 years.

    My advice would be to search out other '37 owners near you. They're great for providing advice (and an occasional part, if you suddenly need one), and you can examine their cars to see what your car looked like originally.  If you're not yet a member of the HET Club I would heartily suggest joining.  Where are you located?  The club has about 40 chapters around the continental US and there are independent Hudson clubs in several countries around the world.  You may have a Hudson group near you.
  • camaroz27camaroz27 Posts: 5Member
    I found the carb kit on ebay. I just searched Carter WA and see what comes up. My carb has the flat accelpump shaft(not really a shaft then) so I look for those kits. 
    Could the term splasher be explained. 3x5 for 3 bore and 5 stroke I presume. 
    I'll say this, the exhaust ports coming out the top of the block was sure interesting.  I mean I must have stared at that for 10 minutes straight.
    1929 era, luckily I also had a 29 model A and I got that one running as well.
    Thanks for the wisdom. I'm sure others will contribute.

  • camaroz27camaroz27 Posts: 5Member
    Splasher. Similar to my model A. The rods will have small scoops that travel through troughs in the pan.  212 has a pump to fill the troughs and lube the chain and cam is splash lubed. Distributor is filled with oil every??
  • BigSkyBigSky Posts: 626Senior Contributor
    If you don’t have this, you will want at minimum to bookmark the site but a printout maybe even better as you work on things.  

  • Trevor JTrevor J Posts: 391Expert Adviser
    Please seek advice before starting the engine or even attempting to.  These engines have an upper tray that need to be full of oil before an attempt to start the engine is made .  If not the bearings will be run before the oil pump can lift the oil from the sump to the upper tray

  • Jon BJon B Posts: 7,078Administrator
    It's always wise (assuming the engine hasn't run for some months or years) to remove the pan (with its "dipper tray") before running engine (as Trevor has pointed out), and clean out the grunge.  If globules of crud block oil passages, then no oil flows, and it's curtains for your engine.  Wipe off the inside surfaces of the engine while you're at it.  You just don't know what's lurking in there.

    If you're familiar with a Model A, then you know the drill.

    As to oiling and lubrication, a handy illustrated chart is printed in the shop manual and maybe owner's manual as well.  H-E-T Club members can download tech. literature for many years of Hudsons from the Club's web library.  You might also want to consider just buying a reprint of the manual from the Club Store, to avoid all time time printing out and stapling the online version.
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