We all know the 15 Million number made. Does anyone know with any accuracy how many T's are left? I know that the count could be narrowed as to those running, those laying in parts (like mine is now) those laying in a field, etc. I have always thought that there are probably 100,000 T's left? And I define that as a complete car in a barn or running.
Alexander must be bored today. LOLOL J/K
Here is what Tom Carnegie says... "Spokane, Wa seems to be a microcosm of the U.S. Take anything that Spokane has and multiply it by 1000 and that is pretty much the total of the U.S." So if this is true the Spokane Model T club has 200 registered cars which means there are 200,000 Model T's left.
Hope this helps
I only wish there were some way to know. I bet the best we could do would be to count those known to the big clubs, and that wouldn't be a very complete count.
Tom is a pretty smart guy, and that may be as close as we get.
Many authoritative sources claim only 1%-2% of a model year car will survive after 35 years.
So if you use that rule, then maybe up to 300,000 Model T Fords have survived after 35 years,.... and now 80 years later maybe only 200,000 are somewhere intact and complete or maybe in parts, or in parts and pieces, located in barns, yards, garages, fields, ditches, river beds, haystacks.....
How many still on the road [i.e. licensed and registered] and on the road in the USA today would be a guess, probably less than 50,000.
The only data is old historical from Stern's book, 'Tin Lizzie', he quoted the insurance stat firm of RL Polk survey of 1948 found 49,869 Model T's registered on the road in the 48 US states.
One would have to compile the listings of all 50 US DMV records for licensed and registered Model Ts, I did that in the state of FL
florida in 2003, and got a FL DVM computer print out of over 5,000 Fords for the years 1909 to 1927. But a lot of them were '1923' roadsters with modern VIN numbers,...street rods...so coming up with a valid number is tough.
Extrapolated from the FL data, with population of 15.5mil, found that 1 registered "Model T Ford" for each 30,000 persons. FL is a state with income for car hobby, other states may not have the same amount of antique Fords per capita.
So, USA population is 309mil.....one T for say each 50,000 per capita would make it 60,000 running or complete Model T's out there.... a bit more than in 1948 perhaps!
256,302 and 1/2
Steve, I'm hurt. You didn't count mine. It should be 237,659...
May I suggest that if the Secretaries of various Model T Clubs around the world were to complete a simple questionnaire we could establish an educated guess of the number of cars in existence. For this purpose I would really be interested in completed cars or those at an advanced work in progress state and likely to be completed within 12 months.
For example in Ireland we have a total of 130 members. If I discount those who do not have completed vehicles and also those whose home club is elsewhere, we probably can narrow the active membership to 100. I am confident that if I were to conduct a survey in Ireland we would have about 200 complete Ts, cars and commercials. What do you think ?
Best wishes to all from IRELAND
Thank you all ! Even the wise guys. For those who actually took a stab at it, those stats make sense. I just think of a company like Mac's who has invested so much money and time in the Model T industry. I thought there had to be 100,00 Lizzie's still around ! Cheers !
This is a tough subject, because it seems like there's always someone pulling some junk out of a fencerow and building a running chassis out of it. I think 100,000 is a good rough estimate. The only problem I see with asking clubs is the number of dual members (like belonging to MTFCA and MTFCI) you would have to eliminate. Maybe we could start a serial number registry?
Lets see how many gremlins will be around in 50 more years. Probably only about 12 even now.
If it were not for WWII scrap drives, we would have a lot more Ts to choose from. All in all, Lizzy is doing very well for herself.
How many people couldn't bring themselves to part with her even after she didn't run any more. So many are here because Lizzy held a special place in a lot of hearts and minds.
This question pops up on a regular basis. I've seen it myself a few times before and the answers are pretty much the same: educated guesses. How about calling for a count? I kind of suspect most T owners & their clubs hit this site at least once in a while so how about a posting on your club or private ownership numbers? It'll take a while and may not ever be complete but it's a start.
in guessing 500,000. there is a lot more T's out there than u think, and then the issue of what u want to count, is a rusty old TT cab on the chassie counted, a 26 coupe body on a frame counted. the ones that are owned by various clubs members, are i doubt 1/4 of whats out there. and then are u talking just in the USA or world wide
I am trying real hard, But there's More T's than I can store or buy. If I had more money I would be dangerous
I know a gentleman in eastern SD that has at least 10 "barn finds" in his sheds. I'm the only member of a T club in this town. I know of 2 T's 30 miles N, 2 more 60 miles N, 3 30 miles E and at least 2 40 miles S. There is also another T and a TT firetruck that run but haven't in over 5 years in town. Those are just the ones I know about! A guess is just that, a guess!!
I know of about 20 here in NW Arkansas, and more keep popping up all the time. I'm the only member of a club that I know of, and I have 2. Trying to get club folks to make some kind of a count would reveal only the tip of the iceberg.
I have one...How many more are out there is up to you!
Just love them and keep em running.
I have discovered 5, (not counting mine) semi-unmolested Ts in my general area. Three of them pretty close and two of them a few miles away.
And of those 6 cars, mine is the only one in the MTFCA.
There are any more to be sure. The county I live in has the third largest city in the state.
The clubs I belong to do not know how many T's I own and that is the way I plan on keeping it.The exact count that I own is my business, the rest of the model T world does not need to know.
I think the situation described by Noel, Mike, and Danial is the rule, not the exception. It's the same here. Of about a dozen Model T's I know about, owned by approximately half a dozen owners, I think two of us are in a club. You could probably multiply the membership of all the Model T clubs by four and get a number that still doesn't cover all the surviving T's.
As far as I know I am the only person in the whole county who drives a T regularly and I have four of them.
A friend who lives 18 miles away drives his on occasion but he's scared out of his pants to REALLY drive it anywhere.
I'm aware of 6 other T's in a 20 mile radius but they don't get driven because they aren't drivable.
Only my first T, the '20 Coupe, was a locally owned car.
Is 5 too many...?
I have at least 10 lying around here in various states. Our club has over 100 members and they collectively had more than 200 last count. I also know where there are several more hidden away.
It's a good start.
When I got into this hobby over forty years ago, it was commonly estimated there were about one million model Ts left in the world. That number was probably a bit high. Since then I have heard many numbers, from a low of ten thousand to around a hundred thousand.
I have resurrected and driven five speedsters from the remains of a few original speedster parts. I resurrected a 1914 pickup from the remains of a "blacksmith-built" original body (drove it once before I had to sell it). I restored and toured a nice 1915/16 center-door sedan, and a pretty decent TT truck. My coupe, is pretty much how I bought it, it drives nice.
In addition to those Ts that I have owned and driven, my mostly '13 speedster is nearly together (finally!) and I have acquired a 1915 runabout project.
By my count, I have had about ten model Ts not counting the race car project and the depot hack project or the four frames I hauled home on Monday (I do have most of the parts required to turn most of those into cars).
Would it be possible for little ol' nobody me to have had one in ten thousand of what still exist? (required for there to be 100,000 now)? I figure I have seen more than two hundred in my life (I have been on tours with nearly a hundred). I cannot have seen one out every five hundred in the world. (Do the math?) Now, we all know that I am a bit crazy about these things, but really, can I have personally seen that many of them?
I'll bet there are more of them than we think. Lets see how many more we can resurrect. Even if we will never get an accurate count.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Steve, are my 2 T's included in your figure way up there? I think you are off by 2
Actually you have likely seen over 5% of them all on any tour. See the ones that are old and you never see again? And the cars that look freshly painted? The one off speedsters that you only see once before they bring out a different one next year? The reason is they are one and the same cars, Not new cars they stopped making them ages ago.
I phoned my insurance company, Hagerty, with this question. They looked on their computer and it showed they insure over 5,000 Model T Fords. And that's just one company. How many Model T Fords are out there? A whole lot.
You have to subtract the 1923 T Buckets, of which there are many.
I have wondered that since I got mine. Every T story is different but much the same. In over winter Im looking to be part of the "Rolling and Registered" figure. I have no better opinion than anyone else but I would think that number is pretty high. 500K to 750K?
I'm happy that I own 4 of them!
One way to get a loose estimate of running Model T's, would be to count the Model T unique consumable parts... say tires, sold over the last 10? years. Sets of 4 would be divided by 4, sets of 2 by 2 etc.
The remaining non-runners would have to be a guess, but I think Wayne S. might figure that one out.
Now to get those tire sales figures....
I just have one, my 1910, but I have enough good parts to build two running chassis. One would be a 1912, the other a 1917-24 depending on what engine or frame I used.
I have read a few times, once in Hemmings, that it was estimated that 1 out of every 250 Model T's survives today. That would add up to a total of 56,000 to 60,000 cars, with thousands more waiting to be found in barns, fields or assembled from parts.
I personally think that number is WAY higher, like in the 200 to 500,000 range...if not more.
Back in 2010, I suggested to Bruce that we start a registration of Model T VIN numbers on the forum in order to give us a starting place to determine the number of Model T's (www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/138194.html). For convenience, it could be located at the top of the forum page and would keep a running talley of the registered Model T's, but nothing ever came of it.
I still think it would be a good idea and the forum would be the best place to begin since MTFCA probably has the biggest worldwide membership of T owners of any club. Jim Patrick
I don't think there is any reliable way to ascertain the number of T's existing. Yes, the MTFCA is a big club, and many of our Arkansas Tin Lizzies members are MTFCA members. But of our club's 60 member families, I'm the only one who regularly uses this Forum (two, if you count Roy Mathis who is here occasionally). So Forum participants represent maybe 1/30th of our club's members. And we've already seen that club members comprise only about 1/10th of actual Model T owners, so how in the world do you expect to arrive at a total number of T's through a Forum questionnaire?
It sounds to me as if we'd just be "spinning our wheels," so to speak, and we still wouldn't know any more than we do now. A wild guess would be as accurate.
I agree Mike. About the time you think you got them all,some one finds another.
I like the idea of a registry. Gotta start somewhere. And for those who belong to clubs with member who don't frequent here, it wouldn't take long to list their cars for them.
And obviously the registry could be set up like all other car registries I've ever seen in that you could post as little or as much information as you wanted depending on your comfort level for privacy's sake.
I think Mike ha it right, there is no way that you could ever be able to get an accurate list of Model T number.
When we were traveling across the USA ( here in Aussie land also) we were several times stopped and spoken to by owners of Model T's. One I remember was a teenager and his grandmother who told us they had a Model T coupe at home. They had no knowledge of the clubs or any interest in them. Another was a guy in Oregon who we met at a Mc Donalds who had his fathers Depot hack ( showed us a photo of it in his wallet) had it for years never been involved with old cars himself. And there were more, except for club and forum members who we met there were far more non member owners with cars we came in contact with, even saw a couple for sale on the road side at different places.
As to how many there are - No idea but every year it is getting greater in numbers. Lots of people restoring bits and remains into mobile cars and I doubt many now complete are being wrecked and turned back into scrap metal, not used yes but I think the actual numbers is actually increasing otherwise the parts suppliers would not be able to continue in business. Once the car is restored parts are not needed any more except for the odd wearing part so most new business would be from vehicles being bought back from the grave.
There's more out there than you think. Here in my little region of FL there are 'new' cars popping up all the time. Old projects cars, cars that haven't been driven in years, newbie owners, etc etc. I watch Craigslist religiously and am always surprised when another old Ford shows up on there that is within a 50 mile radius of me that I had not known about. I know a private collector who has at least 25 Model T's that are not registered or even driven for that matter. He gets enjoyment from looking at them in his building. Only a select few have seen them.
I know where there's 4 1917-25 era cars sitting in a grove barn not far from me. You can't see them from the road. I only spotted them when delivering a large piece of fertilizer equipment. Been after the man for years trying to buy them.
We all have stories like this!
As for a list or something along that line- I'm not sure that will go over too well. The Model A crowd tried something similar to that on the MAFFI site, but it went over like a fart in church. I strongly suspect you will have even less cooperation from the Model T group. Alot of us old car guys don't like advertising what we own out on the internet or as fodder for the local gossip mill.
It is really very sad. This subject has been discussed in many antique auto collecting circles. What you find out, is that a lot of people are paranoid about letting too many people know what they have. There are many, many, fabulous collections of cars out there. I have known a few of the collectors. There are thousands of people that won't participate in any sort of counting of cars for even their one or two cars.
The sad part is that so many people are that paranoid of their (?) government.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
I've got 2 T's. I wouldn't mind putting them on a registry but there's no way I'd give anymore information than what year they are and what month they were made.
Hell I'll give my home address and vin to every car I own. There's a bigger danger of someone in my hometown who knows nothing about this website, stealing my stuff than there is from some whack job reading about it on the net and traveling from Hackensack New Jersey and stealing it.
Most days and nights my 77 Trans Am and 27 Model T are parked in the driveway for the whole world to see.
I recall reading several years ago....might have been on these pages, that someone had done a fairly thorough survey and got to the figure of 63,000. Just in the USofA
If we do start a registry of the cars, trucks, and chassis we all own, I suggest that some information be protected from general access only to avoid another batch of spamming.
A few years ago, the MTFCI directory was easily accessible and I along with some of you got letters from someone asking me to reply because she thought I was the owner of her grandfather's T Truck. The only problem is that I didn't own any Model T trucks.
Now all this said, I don't think there is an easy way to establish an accurate count from any corporate or government database. Since space is usually at a premium I have taken a few of my toys to pieces and shoved the parts into the rafters and under beds. I have discovered that I probably have a few more Ts than the two I bring to Greenfield Village. I have two titled and licensed, three more that are titled, and probably a couple more in pieces. But as far as my insurance man knows, I only have two Model Ts.
Perhaps Chris could set it up and those that want to participate, can. As mentioned several times, it's a start.
I used to have a boss that, when presented with a new idea, thought of everyway why something wouldn't work, so we were stuck doing the same thing, the same way he did it when he began the company 35 years before and he was always wondering why our competition was making millions while we were still barely scraping by month to month. Do you suppose it was because they had computers, e-mails, fax machines and electronic billing?
It is really the true leader and innovator that says "How can we make this work" instead of saying right off the bat, "It'll never work, so why even try". We will never know unless we try. We may be surprised and it's a start. Jim Patrick
Tom, as I mentioned above, most car registries are set up so you can include as little or as much information as you want depending on your comfort level.
Car registries not only serve the purpose as a basic count, they are fun and useful as an aid in identifying other cars that may have different or rare options we didn't know about, and in many cases, their owners were unaware until someone saw it on the registry and said, "Hey look at Carl's T, had no idea they put the what-not on it that year!".
I have seen this happen on more than a few occassions on the muscle car registries and forums.
Until its tried, it's hard to say what the level of participation would be. People have a natural tendency to want to compare their stuff with other people's stuff though. If we dsidn't, 90% of the threads on this forum wouldn't exist.
Danial and Jim,
I'm not against it. I will gladly contribute my information as I did years ago on the MTFCI site. I just won't include my contact information and will rely on the forum login to provide some safety as it does now.
I answer all replies to me via forum mail and will continue to do so. Also when I write any of you I do include my contact information.
As far as comparing my cars to other cars, if someone wants to tell me their car is crappier or better than mine, let them go ahead. I got over that some 35 years ago when a guy in the Model A club drove his 30 Model A roadster next to my Wescott bodied one and pointed out every flaw that he could.
My wife is even better at it. Woe to the person who points out the natural spokes on her '24.
Jim I wasn't suggested that the comparison would be a negative thing. Sorry you took it that way.
Even though I know a complete count is practically impossible, I would very much like to see an inter-club registry. Information collected in the early days of this hobby has been very helpful in researching horseless carriages. If we can put a good registry together, that information could be very helpful for years to come.
We should be able to list our cars anonymously if we wish. I would list my name and contact information, I always have in the past.
Could we list cars we know of in a way they would not be duplicated, and would not infringe on the owner's privacy, but still offer basic information? What information could be used to note a specific car so that it can be identified and/or not duplicated later? (This is where it could get scary, but I would like for it to be available.)
Should owners rate their car's condition? How era-correct it is? Accessories it has?
Where do we draw the line on what is, or was, a model T? I would not want hotrods included in this sort of registry, but there are some that were Ts once. And there are cars their owner believes it to be a model T that I would only call parts. What about a mostly T with a Pinto engine (I know of a couple of those)?
How many parts in a pile, or in the rafters, does it take to count as a car?
Just some thoughts to put forward.
I would like to see good information compiled. Not just how many 1924 coupes exist, but how many are still unrestored, running, not running, nicely restored, etc. Maybe an owner rated one to five scale of condition (even though I have never agreed with most of those scales in things like value guides).
Who knows. Maybe we can do something the HCCA has never been able to accomplish.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2