First question...what is the T scene like in South Carolina? I've been meaning to get into a car club.
I'm moving forward with a bad case of Ford's Syndrome-- planning Flivver acquisition. Found a few ideas and started planning a recipe for a dream car.
1. A 1926 to 1927 'Improved,' Tudor, Fordor, no doors, or whatever. No trucks. Failing that, a 1924 Touring. Must be 6 volts.
2. High compression head, on engine that's been balanced to handle it.
3. AC Brakes (do they work in Reverse?)
4. Warford Overdrive transmission!
5. New Day timer or other good make.
6. Turn signals for courtesy.
7. Steamer trunk for luggage.
8. Hassler shock absorbers and spotlight.
So yes, not exactly stock but not hot-rodded either, because it still needs to be a Model T.
The plan is to license the thing when I'm 25 (in about 5 years) but obtain the machine before that time and begin putting the personal touches on it. Not thinking a total restoration, but a preservation of an already nice car.
Any thoughts? Again, I was thinking that this would be a car driven not every day (I don't drive much) but frequently enough. Was thinking to possibly keep a Toyota Corolla around; they're like modern Model T's and are fun to drive.
I don't know if this is a recipe for a great car or disaster.
Thoughts? And I do want to get into a Ford club if there is one, but most car shows are mostly muscle cars/ hot rods and I don't care much for that.
No comment on all points, but yes, AC brakes work in reverse, which is why some prefer them over Rockies. An original New Day timer is great. The ones currently in production are said to be just as good. Beware of older repops. If you're going with a high compression head, consider a Scat crank to handle the added pounding.
I'm not a big fan of most car shows either. I don't want to sit around all day and pay for people to look at my car. I'd rather be out driving it. Trophies? I have too much clutter already. I do like to look at the real antiques at the Hershey show.
If you're moving to South Carolina check the MTFCA and MTFCI websites for local clubs near you.
When the time comes to buy, don't be in a rush and get the first thing that comes along. With a little patience you can find a good one and still not break the bank.
I admire the fact you have a goal on what you would eventually like to have. My goal of one day owning a Model T began when I was 9 years old in 1963 when I received my July, 1963 issue of Popular Science. In that issue were two very interesting articles on the Model T. One on the history of the T and one on how to drive one. I saved those articles and read them often until they became dog eared.
My goal of owning a Model T was realized in 1970, when, at the age of 16, I was reading the classified ads in the newspaper when I came across an ad for a 1926 Model T coupe for sale. When Dad got home from work, we drove over to Tampa to look at it. We got there at dusk and I had to look at it using a flashlight. Even though it had no glass, upholstery or paint and was very rusty and dented all over, with a few bullet holes in the sides, it was complete and, for me, love at first sight. We paid him in cash, my life savings of $600.00, which,coincidentally was the old manís selling price.
That car kept me broke and out of trouble for the next two years, as I did a complete restoration. I bagged groceries after school for $1.65/hr. All of which which I saved for parts I needed. There was no internet to ask and no clubs where I was so I learned by doing and by reading several books that are still available. The most useful ones to me were, The Model T Service Manual, The Ford Service Bulletins and the Model T Restoration Manual. When I got it running, I learned to drive it using the old dog eared 1963 Popular Science article on how to drive a Model T. After 48 years, I still have that T and it is like a member of the family.
I suggest that you find a local Model T club to join, if there is one in order to be around fellow Model T enthusiasts that can answer your questions and offer guidance. If there is no club, I suggest you purchase the books I listed and read about the Model T, so that when you finally get one, you will be familiar with it and it wonít be such a mystery. Good luck in attaining your goal. It will happen, if you stick to it, but you have to want it bad and you have to make it happen. Jim Patrick
PS. It is cheaper to buy a restored Model T than to buy a basket case to restore yourself. Most people who begin a complicated, years long restoration project Like this, lose interest in it and end up with a bunch of loose parts to get rid of.
We who have expended the years of labor and money to buy the expensive parts, know that we can never recoup our monetary investment, but what I got out of it, was experience and knowledge that can be attained no other way. Jim Patrick
Charles, you have a real decent plan laid out. :-) Allow yourself some wiggle room. :-) I built my first one up from junk and that sweet old boy is still junk but has provided many years of fun for us here. Like Jim relates, our Crappy LizzHe is a member and a fixture in my clan. :-)
IF you go to a car show with all those muscle cars that have mucho bucks into them, you might be surprised at how many people might LOVE your little, low budget piece of American history. IF the timing works for me this year, I might try that right close to my place with our other little Ford T.
He knocks like a door but drives so blame nice. And Crappy IF I dare to take him out on the road. He's got a built in door knocker too. Part of an uber-cheap T's charm.
Here are the books I referred to that were so much help to me and the 1926 Coupe I restored from 1970 to 1972 and still have. Jim Patrick
Sounds like the sort of car you can buy on ebay right now. If you buy soon you'll probably be able to pick one up a favorable price, and pick through it looking for any problems until you're ready to drive it.
If you do buy off of ebay, be careful - most ebay sellers don't know Model Ts very well and often give erroneous information about the car on sale.
There have been numerous posts about ebay "bitsa" cars on this forum. Bitsa means bitsa this, bitsa that, and bitsa something else. If possible, try to get a knowledgeable T person to look over any car that you are considering.
Charles, here is SC MTFCA listing. Just looked at MTFCI and the same person is listed as the contact. Some local clubs are affiliated with both national clubs.
Thank you Dick. I was going to look this up for Charles, but you beat me to it.
We belonged to the SCMTFCA when we owned T's Great bunch of folks