Going through some old "Vintage Fords" vol 28. no.4, I found this great piece of information that leads us to the 2 pedal cars were made in a RHD version for export to the British Commonwealth. Thanks to Bruce McCalley and his article "A Bit of Early Ford History".
In a letter dated 24th December 1908 from the Drafting Department to Mr. C.H. Wills states:
The following changes have been made on parts as follows:
• T-1805: Transmission Cover (Right Hand Control). We have cut 1-⅜” slot on the slow speed boss at point marked “A” on the blue print: also shortened the boss at point marked “B”, also located the oil pocket, T-1552 at point “C”.
• T-1820-F: Hand Brake Lever (Right Hand Control) This lever has been changed at dimension “A”, running the arm to one side, instead of having it directly in the centre – also the location of boss “B” has been changed.
• T-873-B:F Hand Brake Lever (Left Hand Control) This lever has been changed at dimension “A”, running the arm to one side, instead of having it directly in the centre – also the location of boss “B” has been changed.
• These Levers (T-1820-F and T-875-BF) are both new designs.
• T-867-B Controller Shaft (Left Hand Control) – This shaft is a new design 1-3/16” shorter than the present shaft. The present shaft may be cut off 13/16” shorter to conform with the new design.
• T-1808: T-867-B Controller Shaft (Right Hand Control) – This shaft is a new design 1-3/16” shorter than the present shaft. The present shaft may be cut off 13/16” shorter to conform with the new design.
• T-309-B: Controller Quadrant (Left Hand Control) - This is entirely new design – to be used after the first 500 cars.
• T-1822: Controller Quadrant (Right Hand Control) – This is entirely new design.
• T-311: Controller Shaft Bracket – There will be two required instead of one, after the first 500 cars.
• T-314: Controller Bracket Felt - There will be two required instead of one, after the first 500 cars.
• T-519-B: This crank is exactly the same as the old style, with the exception of location holes, at point “A”.
• T-529-B: Crank Shaft Ratchet Pin – new design –to be used after first 500 cars.
• T-527-B: Starting Crank Ratchet Pin – new design –to be used after first 500 cars.
• T-523: Crank Shaft Ratchet Lock Pin – new design –to be used after first 500 cars.
• T-525-B: Starting Crank Collar. This is made out of cold drawn seamless tubing, instead of drop forging. To be used after first 2500 cars.
• T-1553: Notch and Pedals Pin – name changed from Reverse Lever & Pedals Pin. Number required changed from three to four, on Left Hand Control – to be used after first 500 cars.
• T-1851: Clutch Lever Shaft (Right Hand Control) – length of shaft shortened.
• T-1814: Slow Speed Shaft (Right Hand Control) – length of shaft shortened.
The above changes were made by Joe Galamb.
P.S. T-1525 Speed lever Brazing Pin – size has been changed from 3/16” to 1/8” – also both ends have been made square, instead of one end round and one square."
My first question is does anybody know if the RHD version was actually made as the letter indicates? Does anybody have a photo of a RHD 2 pedal ‘T’? Dave C
The only photos I have seen of 2 lever cars sold in the UK were LHD, and all the documentation seems to indicate no RHD cars till 1910. I don't know of an original 2-lever survivor here - there are 2 or 3 2-lever cars here, but LHD recent imports.
There is evidence of a 2-lever car, or cars, in New Zealand but this is / these are all in left-hand drive.
It appears the first T of any description to arrive in NZ got here about mid-1909. It was LHD, and possibly if not probably 2-lever (the jury is still out on that). Given that only the first 750 or so Ts were 2-lever cars, and given that by the end of 1909 production numbers were up to about 14,000, those 2-lever cars will have been made early in the piece (the first 300 cars were made in the 1908 year). I think it is most unlikely that NZ saw many more.
Remember that NZ was the third biggest customer (behind Australia and Canada) for Ford of Canada so, statistically, it is most likely that any 2-lever cars coming from Ford of Canada, either LHD or RHD, would have been sold to one of those three territories.
The letter you quote is dated 24 December, 1908 and I would guess that, at that time, the idea of removing the handbrake lever in favour of the third pedal would have been more than just an idea. But that is just supposition.
I seem to agree, just wanted to put this letter back out there and see what comes back, always trying to learn more if we can. The oldest genuine survivor here down under is #2436 and LHD (Photo attached of Bob Trevan's car).
Seems to be the 3 pedal version was the first made RHD and shipped by Canada. How is this early photo of Canada shipping cars on the wharf for export? Dave C.
Great photo. It appears to be a used 1907 or 1908 Model S Runabout in the foreground – bent fender etc. Note the light colored wheels – advertised cream chassis of the Model S Runabout. Also the bent left rear fender and dirt on the running board etc.
From memory (and that is not as good as it once was) I believe the previous discussions have concluded that none of the two lever two pedal cars were delivered from Ford as RHD. Of course we would always welcome some information to clarify or correct that. On pages 21 & 22 of “The English Ford Book” both of the under 2500 cars shown are left hand drive. And clearly one of them “Charley’s Aunt” was a two lever – two pedal (I didn’t read to see if “Weary Willie” was or was not a two lever – but it was a water pump engine with the crank held straight up.
From Bruce’s book and CD we know that engines number 647 to 1,052 were produced in Feb 1909. And from http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/35743.html we know that car #839 was a two lever two pedal. And from Trent’s Early Ford Database we know it was shipped Feb 22, 1909 to the Ford Auto Company of Balitmore, USA. But that same database shows that cars were NOT assembled/sold/shipped in serial number order. I.e. there are some exceptions such as #627 is shown shipped Mar 9, 1909; #634 on Feb 1, 1909 and 636 on Jan 28, 1909. All that to say we know that one 2 lever #839 was shipped in Feb and it is possible that a 2 lever could have been shipped as late as early Mar 1909. [Note Bruce’s “Model T Comprehensive Encyclpedia” contains a copy of Trent’s Early Ford Database under the “Ford, the First Six Years” section. Available from Bruce at: http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/mccalley.htm ]
If it is possible to obtain a higher resolution photo of the Ts on the docks – it might be possible to confirm the front fenders do not have bills. But then we still have the issue of we don’t really have any good documentation to say when Ford of Canada added the “bills” to the front fenders. For Ford USA it is generally accepted that it occurred around car number 2500 or so. (If it was like most things with Ford there would have been some overlap when both styles were used.) See: http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/1909.htm
And looking again at the Vintage Ford article the first letter came from dated Dec 24, 1908 there is a second letter also from the Drafting Department addressed to the same individual Mr. C.H. Wells Office and dated 5 days later at Dec 29, 1908 which had among other things:
• T-1803: First Floor Board (Right Hand Control)-
Touring Car: The pedal slots have been changed from
two slots to three slots-New design.
• T-l 098-B: First Floor Board (Left Hand Control&
Three pedal slots instead of two. New &sign.
I believe that the 4 days between the two letters may indicate that changes were made to the drawings both times but the actual parts may never have been made. Again great questions and always more to learn about the cars.
Hap l9l5 cut off
It may still be a new one Hap, as Canada still made 27xS's in 1909, 25 of them being roadsters and 1 model C as well.
Re my 1909 pre -production ''T'' found in AUSTRALIA.
STORY GOES --- FORDS NTH AMERICA assemble line docket [as posted] indicates that the car is to be built in L.H.D. form for export agent LOCKWARD .
The car was shipped to NEW YORK for then export.
The SHIPPING documents indicate destination of SYDNEY AUSTRALIA by FISHLOCK.
I spoke to a friend this morning and he said I was welcome to post a pic of his project car-it would appear to be an original RHD 2 lever and not a fabricated copy.
Interesting Alexander, does your friend have the original engine or the patent plate with a number?
Hi Roger - As far as I am aware neither were with the running chassis. I checked my photos but do not have anything more close up on the two lever mechanism.
other parts on the chassis also date from the pre 2500 era
Good to see your posting!
Please get your friend to send us a private email I may have some photos of a RHD 2-Lever that he would find of interest that I saw in Missouri
You are correct that the older models continued to be sold in small quantities – including in the USA. Trent had an excellent article on the USA sales of older models within the last 5 years or so. You mentioned 27 Model S Fords with 25 of them being the Roadsters (which would imply the other two were the Model S Runabout). Do you remember where you obtained those numbers? It can often times be helpful to others to know where information came from as it can give us leads on where we might be able to find similar information.
Below is the original photo David posted:
David kindly sent me a higher resolution photo and I was able to “crop” the Model S Runabout from the original photo and the “zoomed in” version (actually just a higher resolution copy of that part of the photo) is shown below:
Looking at the zoomed in version, you will notice the damage to the left rear fender, possible damage to the left cowl lamp (bent front bezel and may even be missing the glass in the side?) and in general the paint is not that shiny etc. with what appears to be road dirt on the running board and rear deck area etc. I think this car may have been driven over to the area by one of the men in the suits etc. The paint on the other dark colored cars is very reflective/deep – you can see the reflection of the horn etc. in the paint.
The S also serves a great function. Note it is the only RHD car in the photograph. And since it was only offered as a RHD car – it helps confirm that the photograph was printed correctly. Had they reversed the negative the Model S Runabout would have appeared to be a LHD which to my knowledge was never produced. Note, sometimes it can be difficult to tell if the steering column is on one side or the other of the coil box from the shadows etc. But usually the horn and/or horn bulb is very easy to see and gives us a quick guide to which side the steering wheel is actually on.
The roadster above is the one from the far right is clearly a three pedal LHD (note horn). It appears to have the front fenders without the lip. It also appears to have the short fatter early 1909 style radiator cap – but that might also be just the short filler neck of a 1909-early 1910 radiator. I tried but I was not able to figure out what shape the Patent plate on the heel panel of the car is. The early 1909 USA produced cars use the same patent plate the 1906-1908 Model N, R, S, and SR cars used. The Canadian N,R,S, and SR patent plate was rectangular in shape.
If you look just under the Ford script on the radiator core, you will see the crank handle sticking upright. That is often a sign of one of the water pump Model T engines as their cranks could easily be positioned straight up like the N, R, S, and SR cars but using a different method than the earlier cars. It is not always “stowed” in the upright position – ref the official Ford display on Dec 31, 1908 Grand Central Palace in NY NY (page 57 Stern’s “Tin Lizzie”; page 18 Robert Kreipke’s “The Model T” ) clearly shows the Laundalet with the crank handle hanging straight down while the roadster behind it has the crank handle pointing up. Again looking at the radiators – they all appear to me to have the larger water pump style radiator cap and low filler neck. Lang’s has a good photo of a reproduction early cap at: http://www.modeltford.com/item/3926E.aspx
I looked but could not verify if the touring cars had the extra trim piece running down the middle of the rear panel or not. I could not adjust the contrast enough to really tell if it was or was not there. I also looked to see if any of the touring cars had the split front seat – another Canadian modification. But the people were in the way or the cars were not at the correct angle to see that feature. I also looked at the front and rear wheels which on the USA cars are 30 x 3 and 30 x 3 1/2 but on the Canadian produced cars would have been 30 x 3 1/2 on both the front and rear. I’m not sure what they are and currently I don’t have more time to look at them tonight.
So I wonder when and where the photo was taken? Supposedly it appeared in an early Canadian Ford Times. Does anyone know which one by any chance? Also, sometimes Ford of Canada would republish a USA photograph and imply it was a Canadian photograph. [Ford USA also sometimes used earlier photographs and illustrations and just changed the caption to reflect what they wanted it to say/be.] Does anyone have any additional information about when and where the photograph was taken? Clearly early 1909 Fords – but which country was the photo taken and which country produced the cars?
Hap l9l5 cut off
23" rims all round for Canada came later in the piece. Using Bob Trevan's #2346 as an example it was shipped directly from the US via New York to Australia and had 30x3 front tyres. When in 1909 Canada changed this we do not know, but we generally assume down here the RHD version came after the first 2500 when the design was pretty well settled on.
There is much more reserach required from the archives to see when Canada took over the direct export from the US and started shipping the 'T' themselves. I would think this is when the 23" rims became standard all round, but this is only my logic and not backed up by any data...Dave C.
I'M TRYING TO MAKE SENSE OUT OF THIS PICTURE----HOW MANY EARLY T's [APART FROM MY CAR ] came into AUSTRALIA IN L.H.D. FORM??
Begin forwarded message:
Subject: Photo from NSW printing office-- taken in YORK ST SYDNEY in 1912--
. NOTE CRACK HANDLE--- NO HOLDING STRAP---IS IN PRE -PRODUCTION LOCK SITUATION =12 to 1'O'CLOCK
--- HAS WINDSCREEN --could be an add on?
----NOTE EXTRA FLAT SECTION ON REAR SECTION OF RUNNING BOARD---MAYBE A CAB???
--- NOTE LHD ---LHD YET HAS BELOW ITEMS
--- NOTE FRONT WHEELS = 23''- 30X31/2 TYRES -[ N'TH AMERICAN CARS HAD 30 X3 TYRES =24'']
----NOTE FRONT FENDERS HAVE NO BILL SECTION --BILL SECTION CAME IN AT CAR #2500
David- above pic I posted would appear to show two lever RHD examples existed - showing the RHD drive option DID NOT come post the pre 2500 cars. THe mechanism from what anyone can tell would appear to be original and not a more recent fabircation
FORD CABS PICTURED IN 1910 IN ADD BY N.S.W. DISTRIBUTORS [DAVIES &FEHON] IN SYDNEY AUSTRALIA .
NOTE ALL HORNS AND S/WHEELS ARE ON R.H SIDE.
Dear Alex, sorry I forgot to mention the 2-lever posting above. If it proves to be genuine, I am not saying that it is not, then it is truly the "Holy Grail". Can't wait to see more...Dave C
I have been following this discussion with great interest. I remember seeing the picture of the T's and the Model S in the first book that I purchased Authored by Lorin Sorensen " The American Ford " There is a full page ( 15 inches X 10 Inches ) photo of that scene. I have just captured part of that picture. The caption on the picture may create a little more discussion. There are some discrepancies and miss spelling in the caption, but done the less it puts the scene in a place other than Canada.
Best regards, John
Hap, I got those figures from the "The Story of the Ford in Canada"
John, great detective work. I will amend my records accordingly. The search for early Canadian stuff continues...Dave C.
A couple of more pictures of the NZ 2 lever RHD Alex posted above. As Alex noted as well, from what I have seen, these appear to be genuine RHD 2 lever components, not fabrications.
In my discussions I have been assured that there is at least ONE MORE 2 lever RHD car in New Zealand. I understand it uses original parts, but I have no information as to where it is/ who has it/ what condition, other than (from more than one source with first hand knowledge of it) that it is 'out there'.
Thanks Adrain - they are much better pics .... I never took any close up pics of the two lever set up!
Alex - you should be at work
(any damage from that 5.5 quake last night?)
Hello Alex and Adrian,
Thanks for the pics of the 2-lever right-hand drive (RHD) set-up.
I don't wish to quell discussion but we must also consider that, for a long time, left-hand drive (LHD) was not permitted in NZ.
You both have probably met lovely Ernie Torrance (Rangiora Buick and Harley man) - he is a good friend of Brian Moir (T man).
Ernie imported to NZ his 1949 (?) Buick Sloper - which he still owns - from New York when it was approx 1 year old. It was LHD. He tells a funny story of how he managed to avoid getting it converted the RHD. But, one day the authorities caught him driving it and told him it would be destroyed if he did not follow the rules and do the conversion.
We do know the earliest Model Ts in NZ were LHD. But what happened to them? And why? Did the authorities rule them off the road? Were they converted to RHD at some stage? Or did they soon become old cars and were taken apart and useful parts used as farm trucks, the motors perhaps as farm engines, perhaps the chassis as a bridge over a culvert or the basis of a trailer? And perhaps some of their parts became a source of parts for collectors much later on? Who knows?
Australia was even stricter on LHD cars, but that is another story.
I guess what I am trying to say is that, from a historical accuracy point of view, we don't know the history of the car or cars, or parts, that you refer to. I wish we did!
This is one of the most interesting threads I have read in a long time!
Thanks for the additional 2-Lever photos Any chance of getting some more photos of Tom's complete car.
Thanks for letting us know about the book by Sorensen's I had seen this photo before but couldn't for the life of me remember whose book it was in.
This is why I look at the Forum every day
Are you able to post the photos/written info that leads you to this conclusion? Definitely an interesting topic. There are some fairly early NZ T photos around in RHD.... cannot think of many LHD ones I have seen.
The owner has the car in pieces now correcting some bodywork that was not up to scratch by the previous owner. We will surely post pictures when it is back together
The LHD thing was for a few years and I believe applied to imported cars, not those sold 'new' in NZ LHD, or those imported before the rule was made (thankfully now dispensed with).
Great restoration project and I wish the owner the best in restoring it, and can appreciate the amount of work required. Just a few things to look at before you decide it really is a RHD.
1. The Handbrake paw should have an inclosed rivet head and be a forged piece.
2. The handbrake flipper shound be a thicker piece of metal with the spring rivered on without the folded edges.
3. Top of the handrake should be assembled with pins and cotter pins so it could be assembled after the brass plating process (done up into 10)at the factory. This pin & cotter assembly finished somewhere in 1911. Is this a later RHD Hanbrake?
4. Is that a Ford script or what is the forging marking on the 2nd lever?
5. I don't have a lot of pics of 2 lever assemblies and I believe there were several versions of them, a bit experemental as they went along as they did with the crank handle for the upright locking position. One of the version pictures of the 2 lever cam shows a different shaped lever but the notch for he roller to sit in is at the front and not the rear as in the pictures of this car. Compare the cam to a later car.
6. The frame doesn't look like it has the fish plates in it. Early frames also have a squarer cross section in the channels, made of thinner material, different rear corner brackets and a few other differences.
7. Most of, if not all of the later 2 levers used 4 bolt lower body brackets on all 6 locations. simular to the rear 4 on a later 09 but with 4 bolts.
Some one with more knowledge might be able to comment on the cam
Again, all the best with the restoration. I believe the owner is looking for a front axle if anyone can help out.
Did FORD CANADA export L.H.D ''T''s ??
By fish plates do you mean the chassis strengthening plates that fit into the inside of the chassis channel?
The short answer is 'yes'.
What we don't know is when Ford of Canada first produced the T in RHD. But it is almost certain that the first shipment of Ts to NZ included all or some LHD cars.
From the outset (ie even before the Model T) Australia and New Zealand and the other Commonwealth countries, except Britain, had their cars sent from Ford of Canada.
So even if the car was shipped from NY, the paperwork will have been through Canada.
At that time too, very little of the Model T componentry was Canadian made - most of it came in to Canada from Detroit (simply a trip on the ferry across the Detroit River) where assembly was completed before it was sent off to its final marketplace.
Mark - good thoughts, and I hope someone is able to add to the detail.
I see you are from Rockhampton! Good spot. I have a sister there (she's in real estate) and a brother-in-law who is a GP.
What is your reference source for this assertion?
Would be keen to know more
with regards to our catch-up, I only have the phone number for your old place. Our phone number here is 3252937 for your info.
I've made a couple of points above - I'm not sure which one you are referring to? Happy to clarify.
Hope you are well.
Sent you a pvt msg
In addition to the points you mentioned on the early handbrake assembly, the rod between the pawl and the release lever is a forging, having closed ends at each end, rather than being a bent piece of wire as on the later assemblies.
I had a complete assembly for a very early car, and offered it to a fellow who had a later vintage assembly on his 09. At $200, I never had a call back. Some people you can help. Others ?
Allan from down under.
Hi Guys and Bob T, I will add my two bobs worth here for what its worth and this comes from rules set down pre 1900, If Ford exported T's to New South Wales they should have been Right Hand Drive as this state was declared and as far as I know gazetted that RHD was the only excepted position to drive a vehicle from 1836 to keep in line with England, horse drawn vehicles such as my stage coach was set with a right and left lamps, with a red lens on the back of the right lamp for other vehicles to know which side to pass. Just a through to look deeper. I have a drivers hand book of road rules some where in my shed for 1904 so I will try and find it.. Ray
Ray - you are quite right. For another reason, I have had to research the LHD rules in Aussie, and what you have said ties in with what the Dept of Transport sent to me. I was surprised how far back the RHD rule goes in NSW!
Re this OLD R.H.D ruling for N.S.W.-----
Was it FORD CANADA's office in Sydney [for r.h.d ]
and FORD [nth america's] in MELBOUNE ???
Ford had just the one office in Australia. It was in Melbourne, and was a branch of Ford of Canada.
Interested in how you know the first shipment included some LHD cars? Not saying you are wrong as there were LHD T's in NZ but just interested to know your reference source that the first shipment were LHD or it is assumption?
Whens your book going to print? I want to read it!!! LOL
I had at one time a1909 Model T roadster number 8143. I converted it to RHD with parts from England. I sold it to a friend in Minnesota and he sold it to someone in California in about 1977. Does anyone know what happened to It? Was it restored or parted out? If was a mixture early parts including some from 1911 open runabout with a 12 gallon gas tank.
I looked up LHD early when this thread started and found out that LHD was banned in Australia in 1948 Due to it appears the influx of Jeeps from the war.
One article from Wed August 25th 1948 states.
"The State governments today agreed to recommend to the Australian Road Transport Advisory Council that left hand drive motor vehicles be banned from all Australian roads.
The Council will be asked to cease the registrations of Left Hand drive vehicles and to ensure that all such vehicles at present in operation are off the road by January 1950.
Vehicles belonging to the foreign and diplomatic consular staffs will be excluded from the ban."
There are a lot of early veteran cars here that are left hand drive so it wasn't very early.
At this same time England was also looking at the ban the reason being the cars were unsafe on a RHD roads.
Ford England produced LHD Model T's initially in the early 1920's when the generator was addred to the motor and fouled the steering. Until the problem was fixed all the T's at that time were sold LHD.
My old #9737 (August 09 assembly) was a right drive engine only assembled in Canada. From memory when I was in the Ford Archives in 1986, there were quite a few engines , around this number, RHD to Canada. This car sold new in Western Australia
My old #33076 was a Detroit built RHD complete Touring, shipped to Canada, then to Davies and Fehon, Sydney Australia. Again , quite a few RHD engines only to Canada listed at the Archives. I did Discuss this with Bruce McCauley back then and sent him copies of the engine detiails I Jotted down at the time.
It's a massive task going through the microfilm and writing details and I take my hat off to Bruce and who ever helped him for the effort they put compling the list of numbers. Would have taken me months to do
My old #33324 was Detoroit Built as a complete RHD Runabout and also shipped to Davies and Fehon, Sydney Australia. Obviously a show room car with lamps, windscreen and lots of options
All 3 of these cars were project cars of mine and not complete original cars when found.
My #29508 was an Engine only RHD to Canada. The car was found complete in 1955 in Victoria Australia with the body rotted off it. Still had all the original lamps, generator Radiator. Very little missing off it nor changed other than coil box, timing cover, rear hubs with windscreen and top missing. I do have parts of the original Body and all the bracketing but it was 100 percent a Canadian Body with Front Doors (still have one still with latch and handle. Not sure if this was added in Aust or Canada. I have seen phtos of several T's , mainly in Victoria , with front doors.
I also have the remains of a very rough Red 09-early 10 Red Canadian Front Seat with the verticle split in the middle. Canada made the front and rear seats in left and right sections and joined them in the middle with a verticle bead. There is no horozontal Bead on the Canadian Rear Seat Tub, only the vertice. I believe the body came from Canberra and possibly off one of the #13--- cars
In the USA rear seats, when the seat tubs are made, there wasn't enough material in a standard sheet. A small triangular piece was added in and can be seen on the outside of bodies that are weathered. Not sure if the horozontal Bead is a cover over a panel join or not.
I have seen pictures of an original Canandian Water Pump T with the Described Canandian Rear Tub with the Verticle Bead, number around #2400 owned by a Mr Brown, Canada in 1986.
Yes, Fish Plates are the internal Reinforcing Plates in the Frame
Approximate #21804 was another Detroit Made Touring Shipped to Aust RHD. This also was a very complete car when found with body rottd off buit partially in tact.
Also #31656,#33162 Detroit Made Touring Shipped to Aust RHD.#33227 was a RHD Motor Only to Canada that came to Austrlaia.
To make it even more complicated, #30145 was a RHD Chassis (not Engine) shipped to Canada from Detriot.
Seems to me that Detroit helped fill the orders for Canada when they couldn't keep up the production as they Did with K's and N's because there were at least 6x K's improted here but only 2 listed in the Canadian Ledgers
Bob's #2436 was definately a LHD Touring Shipped via Lock in NY to Davies & Fehon Australia. I have seen the card
I did have copies of all the above Job Cards but donated them to a collection in australia that now is in storage.
So Yes, Canada did built Water Pump T's with their bodies, but also some went direct to Australia and i presume, New Zealand.
If there is no horozontal bead on the rear Touring Tub, it's most likely a Canadain Body.
Ford Aust office is listed in USA Parts Books from about 1911 at 103 william St Melbourne Aust. There also was an office in Sydney possibly in Castlereigh St. John H who did some research on N & K Fords owned by FMC USA at the adjacent address.
Was the official Aust Ford Address at Melbourne and the unofficial USA Ford address at Sydney? Or, was Sydney the First address then they set up office in Melbourne. Never been able to work this one out.
Western Australia, in early years, imported quite a few LHD T's and there is evidence that when some were converted to RHD they left the handbrake on the LHS. How they worked out the transmission cover Clutch let\ver, i dont know.
The first 2 Model T Fords arreived in Sydney Aust at the end of Feb-Early March. Considering that the shipment too 6 weeks to arrive, this makes them early January built cars. It Is highly likely to be 2 Lever Fords, Numbers around #400 -#500. Bob's #2436 being a March? Car, most likely would have been from an order off one of these demonstraters.
some other Notes
1904 2 x Model A's imported to Syd Aust by Flemming.
1905 Ford Motor Co USA (?) advertises for ford Dealers in Victoria (other States???)
1906 Davies and Fehon Ford distributors Syd NSW
1907 Perth Motor House- distributors Western Aust
1907 Tarrant Distributors in Melbourne Victoria
1908 Turk & Cliff Ford Dealers (or Distributors) in Brisbane. There is a connection with Turk, Wahtmore and Queensland Motors Limited when they became the Distributor in Qld in 1910
1909 Duncan & Fraser, Ford Distributors South aust (David C, this is your Area)
1910 Nettlefolds Tasmania Distributors.
NZ seemed to start mainly in 1906. There is advertisements with photo for B fords. At least 3x AC Fords were imported prior to that so there was some other agent. Some say via Australia but I have no evidence nor know where the info came from. I had a few bits off on AC that I got at Rotarua in 1980, frame rails and radiator etc. Andrew Brand has the frame and bits of a second one and there is the complete one owned by Colonial Motors. The one Thompson? Thomas raced / relialibility trials-photos is documented. At least the NZ's used cameras back then, photos of AC K C N R S, B add
There is evidence of 2x A, 1xC, 2xF, 6xK, N, R, S in Aust and a remote chance of a 24HP Ford (B?) Very few pics exist. Wish Ausies used Cameras more back then like the NZ's did.
sorry For spelling, run out of time.
Peter, as I said it was my 2 bobs worth that I know of the early rules and that is a interesting comment about the jeeps and it would take in all WW2 vehicles but it is not true, I was involved in a long running court case over LHD jeeps and other WW2 vehicles in the 1960's which upset my parents that I was fighting the state and the NSW state government had to back down and pass them and ANY army vehicle that was LHD for state requisition and old Milton Morris who you should remember as being in the office was so P***ed off.
All the vehicles came under the Lend Lease Laws from WW2 which is federal government and overrides the states on that law and if you had the service record as proof of use it MUST be passed for registration if road worthy in any state of Australia and I was one of the first group to push the law and we had words and I was picked on for a few years over it. I even got a nasty letter from Milton for my part. That ruling only extended to all other LHD vehicles from 1950.. Ray
Interesting comments Mark!
Yes it has the fish plates
Ps our family Model C was RHD Canadian but so far have not turned up any futher info or shipping records. I recently spent hours going through the farm accounts books but could find no record of the purchase so do not know who imported/sold it here.
Just to add to your comment re the style of handbrake with the rivets and cotter pins holding the flipper, I have a Dec 11 chassis with that style and the flipper has no ridge. Although the handbrake is not brass plated it still has the early features.
The car is a 12 comm'l roadster and I was surprised to see that early a handbrake.
The information I received via the Federal Govt agrees with what Ray said about LHD rules in NSW. It was outlawed from way before the invention of the motor car. Each state made their own regulations about this up to the time central government made one law for all.
Without checking, I believe that Vic and SA were the same (ie no LHD). I cannot recall QLD or WA, which would've been the other major markets.
You have made some excellent comments. Forgive me for commenting on the Australian history but I have found that it is inextricably linked to the NZ history. Some feedback....
1) At some point, when Ford of Canada was struggling to keep up with the demand, the company was given the ok to import from Detroit built up cars without tariffs, presumably to keep the credibility of the business going (as it was so good for the Canadian economy). However, without checking, I thought it was a tad later the period we are talking about here.
2) All Fords coming to Australia (and NZ and the other Commonwealth markets) were documented through Ford's export agent Robert M Lockwood (correct spelling), who was based in NYC. He was an export agent, not an employee, and he handled exports for both Ford of Canada and Ford in Detroit.
BOB - what is the reference above to "Fishlock" (your entry above, Oct 6 11.47pm)? And is the spelling correct?
3) The US branch of Ford never had an office in Australia. They had no business there. Only Ford of Canada sold Fords to that market, and their office was in Melbourne.
Below is a scan of a list of the Ford of Canada branch offices, from a 1913 Ford of Canada publication. Note that the reference to an office in London, is NOT London, England but London, Canada! England was looked after by the US company.
Having said that, your mention of a Castlereigh St, Sydney is actually ringing a distant bell in my wee head. Possibly there was a Ford office there for a period - NSW was probably the biggest Ford market in Oz. But it would've been a Ford of Canada branch. Maybe a sub-office of the Melbourne one.
Alex - I shall answer your request in a separate post below. However you are probably aware that all Fords before the Model T, no matter where they were made, were right-hand drive, in fact.
It is good that you challenge statements made. I guess one of the benefits of the great amount of time that has been taken producing this book, which has occurred for a variety of reasons, is the great number of jigsaw pieces that have come together as a result.
Thankfully I have also been able to work closely with some excellent personal sources on this, including Roger Gardner (author of Ford Ahead and CMC historian); the Carterton Historical Society; Jim Wilkinson, whose grandfather purchased the Souters agency. Hap Tucker (well known on this forum) has been a mentor, and Carl Pate of the Early Ford Registry in the US has also been very helpful.
The claims I’ve made above, that you wanted support for, are "We do know the earliest Model Ts in NZ were LHD", and "It appears the first T of any description to arrive in NZ got here about mid-1909. It was LHD, and possibly if not probably 2-lever (the jury is still out on that)."
Dealing with the second claim first. It comes from information found in newspapers from the period, pieced together, as well as from photographs. It is no assumption.
The first claim is from similar sources. As an example, I have found references to two cars from the first shipment to arrive here. One is from the Wairarapa, and the second is from the Waikato. Separately, we believe we have found photos of both those two cars, which have been dated - the cars are very early production cars, and both are left-hand drive.
Below is one of those photos. I can almost guarantee that you will not have seen this photo before. The car is dated as from May, 1909 to late 1910 production.
Roger Gardner shared with myself and Kevin Mowle, a Canadian-based Ford historian, a while ago “We know a shipment of left hand drive versions arrived in August 1909, 12 Tourers (Touring Cars) we think.” Another newspaper reference, from slightly later in 1909, shows that a certain person has purchased a Model T Ford – it was a one liner in the ‘social pages’. However, putting that beside a photo sourced from elsewhere of that certain person in his Model T Ford, we can see that it is right-hand drive.
I’ve enjoyed countless hours at the Christchurch City Library (possibly that building is no longer there, owing to the earthquake?) looking through old newspapers. Now that I am in Wellington I have a whole bunch more resources available to me! I can assure you the book is full of facts, but it will not be dotted with numerical references throughout. However, it will have a bibliography and credits, and all statements will be supportable.
I am pleased you want to read the book. I want you to as well, and I will want you and any other reader to speak well of it. You will find there will be no assumptions made or, if they are, they will be identified as such.
Ray, my mates and I had a number of LHD jeeps which we used as everyday transport and for shooting trips back in the late 50's early 60's.
It was never a problem to get them registered all you needed as you say the correct paper work. Like most things the govt start off with a blanket ruling and by the time its law several exceptions have been added.
What I was pointing out is that in the time span we are interested in here you could have imported a LHD car without a problem.
From what I have seen Ford Canada opened their office in Melbourne in 1909. A copy of the Ford Times Canada states.
"Away back in 1909 it was decided by the far-seeing Ford Motor Company to open a branch in Australia to develop Ford business in the southern hemisphere. A trip to Australia was made by Gordon McGregor, general manager of the Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited, a branch was opened in the city of Melbourne and agency arrangements were made in the different states of Australia for the selling of Fords."
The office handled the supply to the state distributors. They placed orders with the office in Melbourne which then contacted Ford Canada. That way the payment for purchase of the cars was easier for them as communications and money transfer would have been more dificult then ( its hard even today)
Also was 6 weeks normal shipping time? I have seen figures where it took upward of 4 months or longer for the cars to get here from east coast USA as most of the ships were sailing vessels.
It would have to be very favourable trade winds to try for 6 weeks, the shortest way is through the Panama (opened 1914) about 11430 miles to Sydney, and that is 7 weeks at 10 knots, those 2 clippers that Dane had posted, came during the war via Cape Town, other option in Cape Horn, both long trips, steam or sail, 4 months could well be a fair time frame.
Thanks for the peek into the book! and the 'new' photo too. Put me down for a copy
Thanks John - have more questions with regards to the finer detail but lets wait for the book!
One comment I should make is that there is photo evidence of both LHD and RHD T's in NZ in 1909-so clearly by mid calander year both options were readily available.
Thanks Adrian. You are on "the list"!
Going back to the subject, I think this is an important issue - for the sake of history, if we can prove the existence of right-hand drive 2-lever Ford Model Ts, there will be a bunch of people jumping with excitement. That is what this international forum is all about - a number of contributors have already commented on how interesting this thread is.
This forum is a wonderful vehicle for all, in so many ways, technically and historically, to 'get it right".
So, can we find evidence of 2-lever RHD Model Ts?
I tracked down the second RHD 2 lever T - or at least to a reliable person who saw it and inspected it - lying in a field 30 years ago. Sadly the whereabouts of it now are not known.
The person who saw it was restoring a RHD 'N' at the time and knows Ts very well, so was well familiar and qualified to vouch for the 2 lever set up.
But alas, no photo..... so we just have a reported sighting, albeit from the person seeing rather than hearsay....
November 1909 add in SYDNEY by FORD MOTORS [who ever they are]?.NOTE -[not davies &fehon] and not davies &fehon address.
All pictures are L.H.D. & two lever cars.
It's interesting that something always seems to pop up to contradict other Ford facts when researching, nice find Bob.
What a great thread with lots of interesting contributions, observations, and questions. It really highlights that none of us have as much information and understanding as all of us put together. Thank you all for taking the time to contribute etc.
Some comments that hopefully will contribute or give others something to correct or follow up on:
1. For Kerry –
1.a. Thanks for posting the reference for the 25 Model S Roadster for me way back on Sunday (I guess I’m not as far behind as I thought).
1.b. And I agree in part with your comment about “It's interesting that something always seems to pop up to contradict other Ford facts when researching.”
1.b.1. Sometimes there are just some flat out contradictions in the available information we have. But that is one of the challenges – to sift through the information and to find or get as close as we can to what the “facts” really were. In some cases we may never know. For example in the case of the early 1903 Fords – there are cases where the same serial number car was entered as sold more than once and to different individuals at different times and locations. At this point we still do not know if it was just a clerical entry error and the serial numbers were actually different, the entry in the ledgers was correct but the cars had accidently been stamped with the same serial number (remember they were assembled by teams and one team may not have known the number was already used etc.), or if the number stamped onto the car was stamped poorly and therefore read incorrectly, etc. In 1903 it would have been easy to track down the owners and ask the local Ford dealer to confirm what number was stamped onto the ID patent plate of the cars.
1.b.2. Note I do see a “contradiction” in facts in Bob Trevern’s Nov 1909 advertisement. Rather I see a common occurrence that Ford often did. They used the previous illustrations in a later document or in this case in a later advertisement.
1.b.2.a. I don’t know when they began that practice but I know they did it with the 1907 Model R Runabout brochure. They show some of the same photos from the 1906 Model N Runabout brochure but label them Model R Runabouts. They also “retouched” some illustrations in that brochure to create an illustration that never existed – i.e. it has the Model N step plate truss rod hanging in mid air without any step plates to support it. Most folks would never notice that – and as a “sales” tool it was great.
1.b.2.b. As a restoration / historical fact finding tool it must be remembered that illustrations are just that – illustrations. And for that matter photographs can be retouched (a great illustration of that is the 1931 160C blind back Delux Fordor – that shows the Delux Fordor on the right side but if you look you can see the regular rear quarter glass of the regular 160A or 160B body through the side windows. Again – great for sales but not necessarily accurate for historical research.)
1.b.3. Note in Bob’s November 1909 advertisement in the second paragraph it reads something similar to “The Chassis which is identical with the one which won the Great Ocean to Ocean Race …..” Obviously the 1909 racers were NOT two lever cars (see: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/179374/213283.html and notice that number 2 is a wide track – probably not what was being routinely sold in Australia). But again for an advertisement – it served its purpose.
2. For John – thanks for posting the information from “American Ford” Note I am sure the photo is correct – but it would be great if we could obtain some additional confirmation about the location. Why? Because the same caption says Model R Runabout and it is clearly a Model S Runabout. So we know it was prepared by a human and therefore could be mislabeled. In some cases authors have used information from the Ford Archives and after it was published it was discovered the information was labeled incorrectly at the archives. [For an example of that see: http://www.modelt.org/index.php?option=com_wrapper&view=wrapper&Itemid=13 and then search on “1909/10?” in the subject line – that same example is discussed on page 32 of “The English Model T Ford” book. Good news – the Benson Ford Archives will correct things that are misfiled or mislabled – if we can point it out to them.].
3. One of the major challenges we have for dating the Canadian Fords is we have very little documented information on when things actually changed. I.e. often the Canadian company did something before the USA company (such as offering running boards on the Model C, offering 30 x 3 1/2 wheels and tires all around, offering a front door on both sides of the car, offering the slant windshield and one man top with the 1920 model year vice the USA 1923 model year etc.). At other times they implemented changes later than the USA company – continuing the practice of the ID patent plate number matching the engine number well past 1915, continuing the ribbed style transmission pedals that were only used a short time during 1915 in the USA but continued into the 1920s on the Canadian production etc. And of course sometimes they probably introduced the changes about the same time. And of course even in the USA the changes often had overlap – for example we routinely say the first 2500 cars were water pump engines but actually we know that the first thermo-syphon engine was number 2,448 and that 2,455 was the second thermo-syphon engine (ref page 480 of Bruce’s book and his CD) which begs the question about engines 2,449 to 2,454.
4. Still so much to learn, discover, and document. I’m looking forward to what continues to be uncovered.
Hap l9l5 cut off
I think there may be some confusion over the picture that I posted on October 9th. The car shown on the picture is a Model T with Mother- In - Law seat. I couldn't post the whole picture. The Model R is not shown on my posting. The Pre T car shown in the whole picture is a Model R not an S.
Very best regards, John
No John, Hap is correct, the car is an S Runabout or SR for short. It combined an N body with R fenders and was called the SR. A true R would not have a pointy turtle deck.
Wow, all I asked was if there is any evidence of RHD 2 pedal cars. Yes, Hap we really don;t know about the export market at such an early time. Great thread so far...Dave C.
I stand corrected. You can learn something new everyday. Of all the books I have I have never seen one described as an SR.
Thank you for pointing me in the right direction.
Best regards, John
Here are some pictures from that wonderful book " Tin Lizzie " I got this book back in July 1965. This is probably another reason to ask some questions sometimes.
Richard, thanks for your comments, like like the used the early handbrake a little later
John, thanks also for your comments and all taken in. I am sure there will be some errors in what i said but thats whats it's all about discussion and proof. I do have proof of most of what I said. Some is hard to lay my hands on as i Donated alot of my 1980-2000 research to a friend in Vic who has it in storage, re Bob's job card. I will try and retreive soem info in March -April in my next trip. Obousily 6 weeks was a bit short for the trip from USA. I took a guess on that one. I will try and download the evidence for you all, the stuff I have. So that means the earliest T's in Aust were muck earler than #400-#500 so definately were 2 lever fords. Dated Feb 06-1909
Yes ther 100 percent was a Ford USA office in Sydney in 1911 an earlier. Was either part of Davies & Fehon office or the principle metropolitin sydney dealer at the time. The name of this dealer & address changes 3 times. I don't have the info at the moment but they had 2x K and an N registered in 1911 by the Ford Motor Co at the adjacent address in Sydney. John H has more info on this. Bob's car is most likely one of the K's
Great pic of the early NZ 09. See the bil on the front of the fender. This would make it after water pump that fits the description on mid 09 import. does anyone have any inf on then the bil's started on th fenders? Has Atwood Castle side lamps thats very early.
Hope the pic works.
Hi john Stokes----Re your question on spelling -
IT COULD BE ---FISHBOCK
As it is so unclear this is the best i can do at the moment.
WILL TRY FOR BETTER AND ADVISE .
Hi Bob Trevan!
Thanks for that - the only reason for asking is that, when the spelling is incorrect, we can spend a huge amount of time going up irrelevant garden paths.
I suspect in this case it is the name of the vessel that brought the cars to Oz from NY. I tried "Fishlock" on shipping records but that drew a blank.
1. The quote by A. S. Gregg, “You have a shilling [dollar]. I have a shilling [dollar]. We swap. You have my shilling and I have yours. We are not better off. But suppose you have an idea and I have an idea. We swap. Now you have two ideas and I have two ideas. We have increased our stock of ideas 100 per cent.” [ref “Seven Habits Planner for Mon 10 Oct 2011 or Google books page 778 lower right hand corner at: http://books.google.com/books?id=-hxIAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA778&lpg=PA778&dq=a.s.+gregg+%22You+have+a+shilling.++I+have+a+shilling%22&source=bl&ots=h6SySNQBpu&sig=TsLr7VrVnZUEjNxb9_GWNViywKM&hl=en&ei=F3yVTqCIF8aUtwfOyYD-Bg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&sqi=2&ved=0CBoQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=a.s.%20gregg%20%22You%20have%20a%20shilling.%20%20I%20have%20a%20shilling%22&f=false ] I believe that applies so much to this and many of the other threads. None of us have the complete picture by ourselves, but as we share the information we are able to see better and better how it likely would have been. And yes, there will probably still be information missing – but hopefully we will be able to tell which of the blue puzzle pieces are the sky, the car body, or the ocean. Thank you all for digging and sharing.
2. For John Page – Philip Van Doren Stern’s book “Tin Lizzie” is a great read. And was the first old car book I ever read (and the last time I checked a few years ago the same copy is in the Bossier City, LA library). But the way it and many other articles and book present the four cylinder Ford models of 1906 – 1908 they tend to leave the reader thinking there are three rather than four primary models. That is because they usually show the Model N Runabout as 1906 and Model R Runabout as 1907 and Model S Roadster as 1908. If you look very closely at the chart on page 47 of the book you will see where both the Roadster and Runabout are listed under Model S although they only show the Model S Roadster picture at the top. That is also how many folks come to think all Model Ns are 1906 but actually they were produced in the USA from mid 1906 to 1908. So yes you read the book the way most of us would read it. And it is only when we add additional information that we discover that during 1906-1908 (and a few were assembled in 1909 and sold in 1909) Ford USA produced four major four cylinder models. The Model N Runabout (1906-1908), the Model R Runabout (mostly 1907), the Model S Runabout (late 1907-1908), and the Model S Roadster (SR) (starting in calendar year 1908). In the case of those four models Ford started over with serial number 1 on the engine and the car. So there was a serial number 1, then 2, then 3 etc. for the N, R, S, and SR. They all used the same basic chassis parts with the engine oiler, size of wheels, and type of fenders and running boards varying from chassis to chassis. And the bodies were also slightly different although the N and S runabout bodies were the same by the time the S Runabout was introduced in late 1907. Fortunately Ford did NOT have a different serial number for the Model T Touring, Model T Roadster etc. Why he did it for the N, R, S, and SR I am not sure – but clearly he did do that. If you or anyone else would like a free article “How to ID the Model N, R, S & SR” please send me an e-mail with “Send “How to ID the Model N etc.” . Note there were also 28 or so Model S Coupes, 1 Model R Coupe, 2 Model S Laundalets, unknown number of tourings, unknown number of tourabouts produced world wide. But in the case of those Laundalets – Ford continued the same Model S Runabout serial number (ref page 482 Bruce’s book see Jul 20, 1909 (yes 1909) entry also on his CD). . And for the Coupes they continued to use the Model S Runabout serial numbers (ref page 75 and 82 of Trent’s “Early Ford Database” published Sep 10, 1997 available from the Benson Ford Archives and also on Bruce’s “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia” under “Ford the first Six Years” available at: http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/mccalley.htm )
Below is the inside page of the 1908 Ford Price List of Parts Models N, R, S and S Roadster:
3. For Jerry – I don’t recall seeing Ford Motor Company use the designation SR. I looked quickly in the price list of parts as well as Trent’s “Finder’s Guide to the Model N, R, & S Engineering Documents Collection” and they use the term S for the Model S Runabout and S Roadster for the Model S Roadster. I started using the term SR when I noticed that Trent in his “Early Ford Database” used it for the Model S Roadsters. I like to write the 1906-1908 four cylinder Fords as N, R, S, and SR – to help folks realize there were actually four models that had their own serial numbers. Some folks think the SR is not needed and they may even convince me that it isn’t that helpful. But currently I like to use it as it will often help folks look a little deeper and discover there were four and not three four cylinder models offered by Ford during the 1906-1908 model years. Maybe it would work better if I used the term Model N, R, S, and S-Roadster.
4. For Mark Herdman – thank you so much for contributing to the discussion! I noticed this is your third posting – so welcome aboard. Obviously you have been working with the Model Ts for quite some time.
4.a. When you have a chance please take a look at the posting at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/80257/111749.html
And also at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/170162.html
I believe helping to add some of the Canadian, Australian, New Zealand etc. information to Bruce’s “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia” is an effort you could help out a lot. But from your postings I think it is something you would really enjoy doing.
4.b. Concerning arrival dates of the Ts in Australia and New Zealand etc. actual dates would be extremely helpful. Caution – on projected dates they may or may not have actually happened. From Bruce’s “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia” page 11 “The Developing Model T” he quotes a letter from James
Couzens to Henry Ford, dated February 18, 1908.
In that letter Couzens wrote in part,
“ ….I guess
one of the things that contributed to my illness more
than anything was the pessimistic view taken by Mr.
Flanders as to the outlook of producing Model T. In
fact, he doesn’t think he will get them out until May
now, although he had expected April right along.”
And of course the first official Ts did not ship until Oct 1, 1908. So sometimes “expected dates” change either earlier or later. Still valuable information – but an actual or close to actual arrival dates (i.e. news paper reporting arrival etc) can sometimes be much more accurate. Again, thank you so much for your inputs and I am looking forward to reading more of them.
Hap l9l5 cut off
I agree on projected dates, but here it is, the proof. They say it was more than 4 months to get to Aust, then to get through Customes and unpacked and into the show room. Here it is, took some finding tonight but they were here to inspect by 20-March 1909 so I wasn't too far off the mark. Anyone like to work out the shipping time a little more accurate. 4 months and customs would make them extreamy early numbers.
Sorry to all those i havent answered. Really pushed for time. Mark
Sorry Should put in the link
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/15044518?searchTerm="watch the fords go by"&searchLimits=exactPhrase=watch+the+fords+go+by|||anyWords|||notWords|||l-tex tSearchScope=*ignore*%7C*ignore*|||fromdd|||frommm=03|||fromyyyy=1909|||todd|||t omm=03|||toyyyy=1909|||l-word=*ignore*%7C*ignore*|||sortby
As an excellent example of what Hap has just said, that working together makes the piecing together of the historical jigsaw so much easier, I think you may have solved one of my problems. (Some would say I have many of those, so there's work to do yet!)
Ford of Canada set the selling prices for the territories they exported to (or that was the theory anyway - the Aussie distributors forgot that principle just a few years later). In NZ the price for the first Model T was set at £300 fob in Wellington (which means the cost of freight from Wellington to the point of sale was additional - but it usually amounted to very little, usually just a few £).
I understand that the Australian and New Zealand £, while being our own and separate, were tied to the £ sterling (Mother England) and had the same value.
The price of the Model T in the advert from the Sydney Morning Herald appears to be £300 if sold from stock, and £375 “if booked to arrive”. That is quite a difference (or is it £275?). The scan from Trove is a little out of focus – would you mind confirming those figures as I may have them wrong?
If they are right, the figures tie perfectly into reports of the first two cars sold here. One was sold for £320 (which I presume includes the cost of freight, but £20 is quite a lot) and the other was reported as £375 – which I have been scratching my head about! Can I now stop scratching?!!?
On a different matter, clearly the advertisement you've posted shows that you could see and touch a Model T in Sydney on 20 March, 1909. However, it may have been just the one car. Our first advertisement appeared in June, 1909, and it was similarly worded. But there was just one car, which was used as a demonstrator – and orders taken. The first stock did not arrive here until August, 1909.
Look forward to hearing back.
August 1909 was also when the first 2 model 'T's arrived in Adelaide, South Australia for Duncan & Fraser to evaluate taking up the Ford distributorship for their state...Dave C.
Hap 1915 cut off : The reason that the Model T was delayed past May of 1908 was that Walter Flanders , the produstion manager , quit at The Ford Motor Company , and started The E.M.F. Company with Metzger and Everett . They got the first E.M.F.`s out on the road by Oct. , 1908 , darn quick work for a start-up company without a design when organized !! And backwards proof of how valuable Walter Flanders was to The Ford Motor Company when He left . Take a look at an 1909 E.M.F. 30 sometime . It`s very similar to a N-R-S in many details , but 20% larger , and MUCH faster .
Yes it was 275 Pounds according to the next add. Not sure about currency values being the same in NZ, Aust & Eng at the time.
A member of the club sent me a photo of an N & K enamel sign with prices. Did some calculations from Adds in NZ, Aust & Eng. Eng was the closest in price.
We're Always learning.
Sorry did it again. Add is for
1909-04-03 Sat 20HP Ford 4 Sale-SMH P06
This is the file name format I use so all the dates will self arrange in date order whan filed
SMH is Sydney Morning Herald.
John, my out of focus eyes thinks it is 275 in the first clip as well - confirmed by the second clip above.
Thanks for the clarification Mark. And Adrian. Not the answer I wanted! I'll keep scratching.
As to the value of the £ I shall start a separate thread, as the topic is a little different.
One way that Davies & Fehon ot The Ford Motor Agency kept the prices of fords down or more likely, made more profit, was to bring in cars without accessorries such as lamps and sell there own non ford extras. here are 2x Aussie 09s, the first the earliest a LHD Taxi in Inverall NSW and the second a later RHD in Sydney NSW. Note the same band lamps and book lok to have 3 x 3 front wheels. The earlier car has a bail handle on the lamp.
Both look Canadian Bodies with no horosontal rear bead on tub. (some one with better eyes might like to look closer) I will have to check my rough front seat, but from memory the USA tubs are mounted on top of the base but the canadian bodies are mounted on the outside of the seat base and a larger bead added on the bottom edge. The canadian door centre door bead may also be wider than the USA one. This may not be for all 09-10 Canadian bodies but i'm sure mine is.
Would anyone like to comment on the running boards?
This is the picture of approx Eng #24_ _ of Mr Brown, Canada. Note The canadian Verticle Bead and no Horozontal Bead. The Tub is a bit out of shape from sitting off the car.
The rear In Body Irons of a Canadian car may be of different construction (Supplier). Will check
Here is #4032 Canada 1993
And #8635 Canada
No Horozontal Bead, just Verticle
At one stage i had 4 RHD Narrow Square Hole Tx Covers and one narrow Left (ex USA). RHD= Two were from England, one from Langs and the other an Aussie found one. The two broken covers were both found in Australia, one is left , the other right. The LHD one came from Western Australia. The RHD came from? (ask Bob Trevan)
Thank you for posting these photos. I know my research pales into insignificance on these early ones compared to your research, but it is great to finally see all of the proof of how the Canadian 1909-1910 bodies ARE different to our US counterparts. Add to this the split front seat cushion and we have yet another early Canadian difference.
When did the vertical bead & split front seat cushion cease? I have looked at this for a while and I honestly don't know. Would it have stopped when the body was redesigned for 1911 with the new doors, no rear seat toolbox etc? Your thoughts?
I think this ealry photo needs posting on this thread too and comes from the State Library of New South Wales...Dave C.
Sorry to drag this back to task but are we correct to assume from what David posted initially that there were 2 lever RHD T's on the market?
If this assumption is correct-what was their market?
A question for Mark Herdman please. On October 13th you posted two photos taken in Aus of Canadian T's
Is the valance panels on these two correct? At the rear section it is concave / cut away having a fairly large opening. This is different than the concave / slanted ones supplied by langs recently. Do i need to rework mine to look like the ones in the photos? Cheers Alan Long. Perth
I was looking at a link from the other 1909 model T thread and found this on youtube:
A RHD 1909 video.
That had the identical concave shape at the back of the valance too
I still keep an open mind on early 1909 RHD T's but I am not convinced they exist at this stage.
The Splash Aprons or Valance Panels as there are called over here are typical of 09 to very early 10. Changed around the same time or after they changed the Running Boards on 10's.
Here is a better copy of Bob's Travan's Invoice for his Touring #2436 that I got from the Ford Archives back in the late 1980's As I Said before it definately is ticked off as a Control LHD. (mid left column). I had to cut it in half to get it to fit in the <200KB to send
Red Wood Body Pontiac Touring car to Davies & Fehon Sydney via lockwood.
Bruce did an excellent job and I take my hat off to him for all the effort going through those Microfilms. If anyone else has had a go like i did, they can appreciate the amount of time Bruce & others put in.
BUILT AS A L H DRIVE RED TOURING WITH PONTIAC ALUMINIUM BODY AT DETROIT MICH USA ON THE 4-21-09. FITTED WITH SIDE, TAIL, LAMPS, TOOL KIT, BUFFALO CARBY, KINGSTON COILBOX, ALUM TX COVER, 56' TREAD, CYLINDER HEAD 'B', BRISCOE RADIATOR, DIAMOND TYRES. NO WINDSHIELD, TOP, GAS LAMPS, GAS GENERATOR, CLOCK OR SPEEDOMETER OR FITTED. ORDERED BY CROSSMAN AND S__K___?, NEW YORK, NEW YORK. CAR CRATED 4-21-09 AND FORWARDING AGENT, R M LOCKWOOD SENT CAR TO D.F. SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA.
THANKS MARK -- Now that proves it's defiantly out of warranty time.
Dear Bob, I owe you an apology. Mark had corrected me numerous times on the LHD/RHD inconsistancy published before. I know it doesn't mean alot but am convinced about the LHD pre 2500 coming to Australia. Thank you to both Mark & you for sharing your research...Dave C.
Mark, Bob, David...
To fill in the Crossman and ???? gap on Marks 'Car Reads' item above.
Crossman & Seilcken was the shipping agent who looked after the Australian market. (I think they also handled the South African market, while another company, Peabody, looked after NZ.) Lockwood was the export agent for both Ford - US and Ford of Canada. He was based in New York.
Mark - I've not forgotten - I shall answer your private message in the next day or so!
I would like to make a correction. The card does say Aluminium Body, not Wood. Is this a bit like the water pump engines not finishing at #2500 exactly, some alum bodies were used?
No need to apologise, we are all learning.
Thanks for the info on Crossman & Lockwood.
A forum regular sent me these photos today and we would be interested in your feedback. Another RHD 2 lever?
PS - ignore the inaccuraces of the body etc - photo for reference to RHD 2 lever set up only
Just catching up on this thread!
Thanks for expanding on Bob Trevans #2436.
I did not realize until now that Bob's car had an Aluminum Body the other thing I found interesting is that it was equipped with the Rare Buffalo Carberator.
Bob if you read this can you send in some photo(s) of thge Buffalo Carberator set up
Alex thank you for posting the photo. One nice thing about the photo Alex posted is it clearly shows the exhaust pipe. Which assuming the T has the original style head and exhaust was always on the right side of the car. That helps to confirm that the photo has not been reversed. Additionally the person who took the photo saw that it was a RHD 2-lever 2 pedal. That same individual is working to gain some additional details and better photos of the car/chassis.
We are making a lot more progress than back in 2008 when a similar questions was asked “When was the Model T first built in Right-Hand Drive?” http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/50893/75508.html?1229529258 . While we still have many additional questions we have some fossil evidence that may prove they did exist actually exist – assuming we can confirm or reasonably confirm the parts were not created by a previous owner etc. Or if we can find some additional supporting evidence.
If the car in the photo Alex posted as well as the car in the photo Adrian posted prove to be original 2-lever chassis then that would raise additional questions such as were they actual production cars or more of a prototype etc. For example we know Ford USA produce two Model S Laundalets. Many of us would not consider two cars a normal production run – although they did have the factory drawings for those parts etc. And for that matter we could debate if the first 2500 or so Model Ts were actual production cars or if they were closer to prototypes as Ford ironed out some of the issues and dropped the internal water pump, the 2 lever transmission cover, changed the frame rails so they would be stronger etc. But at this point – I don’t care what we call them (prototype, early production, normal production) – I am just hoping we can better document if they did or did not exist. This thread has turned up more new information about the RHD 2-lever than any of the previous attempts. Thank you all for searching and contributing. And keep those cards and e-mails coming/posting.
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Thanks Alex for posting the pictures. I also recently heard of this car from other members.
Does anyone have any better pictures of the levers and Mechinism under the floor boards?
Re the youtube yellow RHD 1909 that Herb posted, the owner is in our club roster and gives the engine no as 3209. Don't know him and haven't seen the car, but he's not too far from me.
If you look back at the article Hap was referring to in 2008 the car that they were referring to in Denver with RHD was owned by Dick Oswald it came with Serial #1991.What was interesting is that it was 1 of 3 1909's built Extra Wide.
An article on this car was in Vintage Ford Nov-Dec 1978 Page 19.
If the name Oswald sounds familiar its because he was a President of the Club back in 1982
Thank you so much for your support and for posting the references. That will sometimes allow us to review the information and hopefully help us better understand what is being shared. I believe Dick Oswald (RIP) was like many of us and he had more than one Model T (from the advertisements in the “Vintage Ford” we know he sold several Ts.) So there is a good chance that he did own a RHD 1909 Model T as mentioned by Paul Mikeska in his Dec 14, 2008 07:16 PM posting at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/50893/75508.html?1229529258 or your own posting on this thread at: October 23, 2011 - 12:35 pm where you stated the engine number was 1991 – clearly a 1909 Ford. But I believe the article you mentioned in the Nov – Dec “Vintage Ford page 19 -21 does not describe a 1909 RHD car. Instead it describes a different Model T that Dick Oswald’s had recently purchased. It was described on page 20 as,
“Engine, pedals, radiator, etc. appear to be of the 1913-14 era. The hood
has no louvers. The windshield frame is brass. “ and on page 21 the article said:
“The body was surely built by a master craftsman.
Doors fit properly, the seat is very comfortable and
everything fits well. The color is black with a small red
pinstripe but it could well have been repainted some
The more the car is examined the more confusing it
becomes. Was it a custom-built body? From another
make of car, adapted to the T chassis? Or?”
Below is a photo of 1913-1914 chassis with the unusual body – because I know many of you would like to see which side the steering wheel is located…From page 20 of the Nov – Dec 1979 “Vintage Ford” used by permission. [caution from memory and you know how mine is going… I think there might be one of the magazine issues on one of the CDs/DVDs that is mislabeled. I may have remembered that wrong – but sometime – someplace I think I was using a magazine on a CD and found that the file label said one date but the actual pages of the magazine said another date. Sorry – we still have to deal with us Humans and our mistakes until someone perfects the Artificial Intelligence (AI) etc. ]
Hopefully you or others will be able to add some additional information about Serial #1991. That far into the production it should have been a three pedal – but still clearly a water pump engine and “fish plates” in the frame rails for added strength. Additionally for any serial number past 1,119 and before 70,750 or so -- we should be able to check with the Benson Ford Archives and verify the way the car was built by looking at the shipping record – assuming it is legible (sometimes they were originally filled out in a hurry or with poor penmanship and sometimes the microfilm transfer missed some of the data.) Again thank you all for your help and support.
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More photos are on their way showing #1991 wth RHD.
I should point out that when I said 3 1909's were built Extra Wide that I was referring to the Body,the car was Not a W-I-D-E Track.
The car is also Not a 2-Lever
I have followed this thread with much interest. Those RHD 2 lever pics are fascinating. There has been some dicussion and use of factory job cards to support some fact. Just something to think about, these are not always accurate! Mark Herdman supplied a copy of the factory card for January 1910 car 14529. The date stamp on the card has been left as January 09, possibly a new years hangover. The card also shows that it left the factory as a left hand drive car. It definately arrived in Australia as a
rhd car. Did other early cars follow a similar path and were modified to RHD for export to Commonwealth countries after they left USA shores?
I had a closer look at the frame and mechisism. First question is............ Does the frame have the reinforcing plates?
Earlier frames were made of thinner material and had a tighter radius in the bend to form the "U" channel (the thicher the material bigger raduis). This one appears to be a later frame with bigger raduis. Here are some photos of the frame i owned for my 2 lever project. Very difficult to photograph the radius.
Handbrake quadrant that is rivet to frame is far to short and the 2nd lever is squashed in hard against the frame. Here is a picture of #710 for comparrison.
Also note in the above photo that how thick the bottom of the second lever is, the split and unique square head nut used to clam it, totally different to the one in discussion. More to come
#337. Above photo. Note there is only one cam on the second lever tube shaft. The cam operated a roller to find neutral and also operated a rod to change gear. this tube that is on the outside of the handbake shaft and is long. The one in discussion appears to have 2 cams/stands. One very close to the 2nd lever and the other a standard 09-16 style forging to operate a standard 09-27 Clutch "T" with bolt. This is nothing like the 2 lever setup.
Above is a better shot of the one cam with control log on the one side. Note the shape of the cam and resting point for the roller. Also #337
The car in question, Crankcase is much later, like late 12 at the earliest, look at the rear forging. The transmission cover would therefore have to be wider and possibly tapered hole style.
I had a nice repro second lever but unfortunately cant find the photos for a close up of the base
There are at least 2 cars imported to Aust in 1910 that were marked as LHD that arrived as RHD. Your #14529 engine was found by Theo Vanaklemade with the narrow RHD square hole cover and #21804 was found as a complete car with RHD cover, it also marked as LHD. (Some West Australian imports were convered to RHD, i am told). The above 2 cars were both found in Victoria & South Australia respectivaly.
With #2436, the card says LHD. I personally believe there were errors in the job cards. Reguardless, the information in the books on #2436 is incorrect and should be noted.
#21804 as found in Victora, a South Aust car.
Here is a picture of another 2nd Lever base in a different aplication.... on a Fronty Ford. Note the unique square head screw to tighten it onto the shaft. Not the boss for the keyway to locate on tube. This one doesn't have the kich in the shaft
Finally found the pictures of my 2nd lever. This is a repro from USA, but a really well made one and very close to original.
gives a good idea of the shape and end fitting
Mark, I have seen the card marked LHD for the Landy 1910 - the US card that is. We have no card how the car was actually exported from Canada. I think that we have evidence at this early period as with #14529 & #21804 that Canada was changing LHD motors to RHD for export to the Commonwealth. Both these cars were RHD when delivered (#14529) or found (#21804). Dave C.
#9737 was a right hand drive motor only shipped to Canada. There was a whole series of numbers for this month that went together as RHD. I gave a hand drawn list of numbers to Bruce when i was staying with him back in 1986 that i had writtin down from my visit to the Ford Archives a week or so before. Also was a series around #33076 that i gave him. This was a long time ago and they may have been lost. I know i have lost my copy.
#9737 was built in August 1909. Some canadians believe this is the earliest RHD, the ones from this batch. I keep an open mind.
August 1909 lines up exactly with the first 2 model'T's bought to Duncan & Fraser by Durant for assessment prior to accepting the South Australian state Ford ditributorship...Dave C.
With this wealth of information coming forth can any one tell me how many pre -production cars[pre #2500] came into Australia.
Bob, count South Australia out as the first 2 'T's arrived in August 1909. From surviving regsitartion records apparently 4 Ford cars in total were sold in 1909, that makes them post 10,000. Can't help you on this on I'm afraid...Dave C.
I would say definately 2, possibly can prove 3. If some one can tell me when the flat front early style fenders finshed, i know of one more.
To add to this, i doubt your car came over by itself.
Melbourne & WA imports are another story. Victoria, West Aust, South Aust, NSW with Queensland did their own thing. Tas started in 1910 as far as i can work out but there was an AC or C in Tas before 1910.
I have written proof of a model 'F' and a 'N' in Adelaide, so at least 2 pre 'T's in SA. I also have a photograph of a 'R', but can't confirm it is from SA. How they got here is yet unknown...Dave C.
If one goes by the general concept of the first ''T''parts orders was for enough items to build only 2500 cars.The next awaiting parts order of items would be to build the next version of the ''T'' which was to be known as the production ''T' .
To me the ''NON BILLED''front guards would have come in the first order and ''BILLED '' guard would have come in the next order and fitted to the updated car [called the production ''T'']????.
Re: 1909 Ts
Into New Zealand (refer The Vintage Ford Mag Volume 19, #3)
There is USA Built cars and Canadian Cars coming into New Zealand in 1909.
Note Left Hand drive car has 24" wheels on front = (30x3) tires.
Note right hand drive cars has 23" wheels on front =(30x3.5) tires.
Both cars have billed front fenders... and the right hand drive car has a factory built raised front seat.
Re Above cars - Note in top picture that crankhandle has no holding strap.
Is it a pre #2005 car ... or has it just been supplied with no holding strap.
I have never seen (or maybe more acurately noticed) a factory raised front seat. Thanks for posting. I learnt sumpthin' today.
: ^ )
This photo was in the Canadian Ford Times 1915, as the story go's, if the date is right, is it a RHD 2 lever?
Hi KERRY,Well it's certainly got some 1909-10 features--
----early flared park lamps
---early style rear door latch pillar
---early rear door style hinges
----early rear door front square bottom
----HIgh radiator filler neck
----low angle mounting for lowered roof
---front seat side square at front door mounting to seat
Great pic Kerry, thanks
Looks like a later 1909 to me. See the high door handles and bills on front fenders. Fenders could have been changed but all the early Tourings had the low rear door handles. I have been told that the low door handles, unique latches, catches, hinge, all finished at roughly #4000. See 30 x 3 front wheels also. Has the early E&J side lamps with the rims
Note article does not say a definately 1908.
Interesting is the front doors. First time i've seen a pic of a Canadian front door. My Auistralain Canadian import 10 front door is very simular so there is a posibility it is a Canadian added feature. Be nice to have a clearer picture to compare.
Great photo. Note Ford of Canada most likely did NOT produce or sell any Model Ts in 1908.
Note the article said the foredoors were not added until after several seasons. Ford USA sold kits to fit the 1912 foredoors onto the earlier cars. I would assume but I do not know that Ford of Canada would have also offered a similar kit.
Great information and photos.
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Good point Hap, didn't read that bit. Doubt they would have been a kit. The mountings to he Dash was a thick piece of timber on mine. Maybe a bit to primitave to be made as a kit conversion and then try and fit the kit.