Brian's 1913 Runabout Production Numbers

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2005: Brian's 1913 Runabout Production Numbers
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Brian Harlamoff on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 05:52 pm:

Hello Everyone,
My 1913 Model T runabout is a two owner car – original owner until 1962. The car came from Arizona. Several members have asked about the particulars of my car for a compilation they are making. It is not absolutely certain that everything is absolutely original; however it would appear to be the case, at least for what is listed below:

Engine # 241970

Body Number on Seat Riser, stamped in wood: 132817

There is no number on the bottom of the door or underside of the door as reported by others with bodies made by some manufacturers.

Date of manufacture by Engine Number: April 3, 1913

Firewall tag: missing

Casting Date on Block: 3/12/13, right of the water inlet in large block letters.

Pipe threaded water jacket plugs

Cylinder head without priming ports.

1912 style frame with forged rear fender brackets bolted on.

DB front axle and spindles. DB headlight forks.

Steering: unknown manufacturer at this time.

KW wood coil box

2 piece drive shaft.

Ford Made in USA script transmission cover.

Brass ‘Ford’ Script oil filler cap, No ‘Made In USA’. Appears to be original.

Fan Mounting Arm: Has the bump for the spring as on earlier models.

Original upholstery: leather seat backs and cushion. Door and kick panels are fake leather.

I would be interested to know how this compares to other cars that are in the compilation.
Best regards,
Brian


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 10:27 pm:

Brian,

Thanks so much for taking the time to capture and share the information. When you have a chance and the weather is nice, please take a picture of the body number that is stamped into the wood seat frame. Please place a “dime” or a ruler next to the number to help me judge the size of the numbers. One of the things I am trying to gather more information on is the numbers and if certain body companies used certain style number stamps and/or style of numbering or if several of the body companies used the same number stamps.

Also, if you have some pictures of your car would you please post them and/or send them to me and I will gladly post them for you (that can be frustrating until you do it once and then you see how it is done and it is easy). Also if your car was shown in one of the previous Vintage Fords or other magazines, please let us know and we will check there.

It sounds like you are very fortunate to have a two owner car – that is neat. You mentioned that “Several members have asked about the particulars of my car for a compilation they are making.” Do you know if someone else is compiling information on the 1913 cars or do you think they were referring to my very slow accumulation of information on the touring and roadster bodies and body numbers? If someone else – do you know who? I might be able to obtain some additional information and perhaps share some with them.

From your posting it sounds like you have owned your T for a long time but that you have only posted a few times on the forum. Thanks for taking the time to post and share. I will review the information, but I don’t have a lot of information on the 1913s as I have be primarily focusing on the 1914-22 tourings and roadsters. RV Anderson sent me some photos of an original but in need of repair 1913 body.

It had the square front doors and on the left rear door it did have a number stamped on the bottom of the door as shown below. I’ve misplaced my notes so I don’t know if that is the same left rear door or a different door.



It also had a “B” on the front seat heal panel indicating it was made by the Beaudett Body Company in Pontiac Mich.



Some shots of the left rear door:





If you have a chance please look for a letter on the front heel panel also.

For anyone posting something about the Model T Bodies – please click on any posting I’ve made (or search for “Hap” complete words only) and click on my name and say “hey look at the posting on the bodies at….” Like most of you, I can’t read them all and I would hate to miss one related to the body numbers etc. Some day one of us is going to figure this out and it will make sense and we will wonder why it took us so long to recognize the pattern the different body makers used on their cars.

Again thank you Brian for posting and also thank you and Royce for sending me an e-mail about the posting.

Respectfully submitted,

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Brian Harlamoff on Sunday, February 10, 2008 - 02:30 am:

Hap,
Here are the photos of the numbers as promised. Hope this helps with your research. The body does not appear to be a Beaudette.
Best regards,
Brian


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Sunday, February 10, 2008 - 06:28 pm:

Brian,

Short response: Great Looking 1913 Roadster. I believe it has a Monroe Body Company produced body. Request for help from other 1913 owners or folks who know a 1913 owner: Please take additional photos of the 1913 body manufacture number area – especially if it has an “M” near the body number. Post and/or e-mail (just click on my name) along with the casting date and approximate engine number or engine number assembly date.

Additional Details:

1. Thank you for sending me the photos of your cars and for going back to snap the photo of the body number. I agree with you that the car is NOT a Beaudett (also Beaudette). They apparently put a “B” either with the body number when it was stamped into the seat frame wood (earliest picture I have is 1908 Model S Roadster body number) or put just the number but the “B” was on the front seat heel panel or the back seat heel panel or both (several 1915s are that way) or they have the “B” stamped along with the body number in the right front floorboard riser.

2. You may not have noticed – but there is an “M” in front of your body number.



2a. I believe that links directly to who made your body. My Theory – and I have NOT been able to prove or disprove it yet – is the “M” stands for Monroe Body Company, Pontiac Michigan. They as well as Beaudett were both located in Pontiac and both supplied bodies to Ford over the years.

2b. However, Monroe is not listed as one of the suppliers in the Jul 14, 1913 letter (ref Bruce’s on line encyclopedia at: http://mtfca.com/encyclo/doc13.htm and his book “The Model T Ford” page 555)

JUL 14, 1913 Acc. 575, Letter 434, Ford Archives
Noted that 1913 Touring bodies were made by Herbert, Fisher, Wilson, and Beaudett. Apparently the Beaudett bodies differed in construction from the others. Beaudett bodies with a filler block on the rear door hinge posts apparently did not need the steel reinforcing pieces.

2c. Several possibilities come to mind for why Monroe is NOT listed in that Jul 14, 1913 Letter 434.

2c(1) It could be that Monroe did not produce the touring car bodies and therefore was not included in the discussion about the reinforcing brackets on the 1913 touring bodies.

2c(2) Or as a long shot -- perhaps they did supply both touring and roadster bodies and both Monroe and Beaudett were just listed as “Pontiac” in the records because they were both located in Pontiac. That is a long shot as Bruce McCalley in his online encyclopedia at: http://mtfca.com/encyclo/A-B.htm shares: BODIES Note: Early Ford documents refer to a body manufacturer as “Pontiac.” Research has shown that there was no body manufacturer by that name but that in Pontiac, Michigan, it was actually the O. J. Beaudett Body Company that made these bodies for Ford. Just why Ford documents made this error is unknown. Perhaps it was just easier to write “Pontiac” than “Beaudett.” I would like to run that one to ground one way or the other – as the bills that Ford Motor company paid for the bodies should clarify that one.

2c(3) Or because some of the 1915s have the embossed indented “M” and embossed raised “B” on the front seat heel panel, I think it might be possible that Monroe and Beaudett may have worked together sometime in the past. Perhaps they were friends, relatives, or just needed each others help to make the production quotas and subcontracted with the other company? In this case – could Beaudett have contracted with the Monroe Body Company to produce your 1913 roadster body. And because Monroe built it – they added there “M” and because Beaudett got paid for it, the Ford records indicate Beaudett and NOT Monroe? The photo below is from George Mills Sept 1915 (early 1916 model year).



2c(4) If anyone has additional information on the Monroe Body Company and its possible relationship with the Beaudett Body company or about it supplying bodies to Ford, please let us know. At:
http://home.earthlink.net/~scrippsbooth/monroeserial.html
there is a discussion of the Monroe car which also received bodies from the Monroe Body Company. In that case the serial number stamped on the front seat wooden sill was 9/16 high verses the1/2 inch shown in Brian’s photo in his posting above. Also on the Monroe car, there was not an M next to the number (or they didn’t see it or mention it) but there was an “M” on the floorboard that they assumed stood for the Monroe Body Company.

2c(4)(a) Anyone going to the archives? If so please take a look at Accession 403 and the 100 or so contracts with some of the body manufactures.

2c(4)(a)-1-ref the posting by Trent on February 28, 1999 at 07:33:15: In Reply to: Re: 14 Roadster body details posted by Keith Townsend on February 28, 1999 at 01:33:18:
….In Accession 403 at the Research Center are about 100 contracts from vendors to Ford in the 1910-1916 era. In this collection of contracts are at least four body manufturers: Beaudett, Fisher, Monroe Body Company (of Pontiac, MI), and Wilson.

2c(4)(a)-2- If someone can help capture the following information from there:

Which companies had a contract for what time periods to delivery how many of what type of bodies and where were the bodies delivered. Also – is there mention of Monroe and Beaudett working together, subcontracting, etc.?

2d. I don’t think the letter on your car is an upside down “W” for Wilson. The Wilson “W” appears to have slanted rather than straight up and down sides of the “M” that was used on your car and shown on the “M-B” up above. The picture below is of a 1914 touring in the SC State Museum. As with the Beaudett bodies that had the letter on the heel panel as this one does, it did not have the letter next to the body number. But note the side legs of the “W” are slanted.



Below is Mike Cook’s Oh’Henry a very early 1916 with a Wilson body. Note the “W” has slanted sides.



3. If we could have a few other 1913 touring and roadster body owners check their front seat riser and also front seat and rear seat heel panels to see what is there it might help us gather the clue to solve the puzzle or at least see more of how some of the pieces fit together. Again – a photo is fantastic as it allows us to see things we may have missed if it was only written.

4. Do you have a copy of Bruce McCalley’s “The Model T Ford”? See: http://www.mtfca.com/clubpages/book.htm , on pages 141 to 169 he addresses the 1914 touring and roadsters in good detail.

4a. Additionally other items are covered in other sections. For example, you shared the engine number was 241970 and you listed the Date of manufacture by Engine Number: April 3, 1913. Bruce on page 501 shares how the dating of the cars based on the engine number is often not accurate (it can be – but it isn’t necessarily so). First that the engine number and the date associated with it is the date the engine & transmission unit was assembled (not necessarily placed in the chassis) OR the date the serial number along with other engine serial numbers were shipped off to one or more assembly plants that in turn assembled the parts shipped from the Highland Park plant to their location. Once the engine was assembled at that location the engine number that had previously been sent to the assembly plant would be affixed to the engine. It might or might not be assemble into a car immediately or not. Short blocks were NOT numbered – just complete engine and transmission assemblies. I don’t know when Ford first started shipping engine blocks and other parts to assembly plants for them to be put together and numbered there. If someone has a good date for that please let me know. Scanning Bruce’s serial numbers, the first one I saw was on page 515 on Jan 7, 1918 (200 numbers shipped to Long Island) and then on Jan 16, the numbers were returned.

4b. Looking at the casting date (3/12/13) Mar 12, 1913 and the Engine assembly date or shipment of the number date early Apr 1913 – the body number 132817 might be related to Feb 1913 or it may just be the number 132817. With the Beaudett body numbers they are just numbers (actually related to each other but exactly how I don’t know at the moment) but they don’t have an easy to recognize date code. For example on page 489 of Bruce’s Book Car (engine) # 30,000 shipped Jul 20, 1910 and was Pontiac (Beaudett) touring body number 10984. It would be easy to say the first number “10” was the year. But the next listing Bruce shares below it is Car (engine) #30,072 shipped Jul 25 and also a Pontiac (Beaudett) touring with body number 11350. Clearly the “11” was NOT for 1911 and the numbers skip around a lot going down to 9531 for a Pontiac (Beaudett) touring shipped the next day and going up to 12500 for a Pontiac (Beaudett) touring shipped the next month. But by 1915 it is clear that for the Beaudett touring bodies the year, month and possibly even the day the body was made is part of the body number. In your case a sample size of “1” is too small to make a trend. Additionally there are no spaces or dots etc. between the numbers as there are on other body numbers that tend to include the month and year. (And if you would please look at your body next time you are out that way and see if there is possibly a “T” or some other marking lower and to the left of the “M”? In the photo below it looks like there may be something there – or it might just be the lighting.




4c. You shared the firewall / ID tag was missing. If the dash appears original there should be some mounting holes where the dash tag originally would have been mounted. If you would please take a photo of that area with a ruler in the picture that would be great.

4d. Your picture shows the typical 1913 – early 1915 rear axle and the typical 1913 style turtle deck with the sharp corners (ref Bruce McCalley's book "The Model T Ford" page 162 & 152 cp with 1914 and later on page 332.



4e. Your front fenders appear to have the front lip almost straight down which is typical of the 1913 after the very early 1913s were produced. (ref page 159 Bruce McCalley's book "The Model T Ford")



5. I need to stop, but I would encourage you to compare additional items to the cars shown in Bruce’s book pages 141-169. Take lots of photos – you never know which one will help figure something out in the future. Remember there was quite a bit of variance with the cars and while clearly a 1926 part would have been a replacement part, just about any late 1912 to 1913 part could conceivable have been installed by the factory and/or one of the branches. Again thank you for sharing your information with us. If I find out additional information about the “M” or your body number I will gladly let you know. And thank you for e-mailing me that you updated the posting. None of us can keep up with all the postings and it was very help to get the “posting was updated..” By the way does the forum offer a place to mark that we would like to be notified if someone adds to the posting? Some of the other forums I look at have that feature and it helps us not to miss something. Brian you have a great T – good luck with it and if we can be of help in the future, please let us know.

Respectfully submitted,

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck. Sumter SC.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Sunday, March 09, 2008 - 08:59 pm:

Royce asked at http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/49923.html?1205110012
“I wonder if there is a serial number stamped in the top of the seat frame? Second, I am confused by your statement that you have a "Monroe" Pontiac body. We are used to the Beaudette body company which was in Pontiac Michigan.”

I may have overstepped (you know open mouth and insert foot) but I believe that question would go well as a continuation of this thread – so I answered and refered folks from the previous thread to share related comments here. I’m hoping to keep the “Body manufacture questions” in the same general location. We will see if any of you liked the idea enough to post related comments here or if next time I should “keep my foot out of my mouth.” Hey that’s how we learn.

At the previous posting I shared: For Royce – yes Brian’s car has a body number in the usual location for a pre-metal seat frame car. It is stamped into the wooden front sear frame in front of the gas tank area. I would recommend continuing the discussion of why Brian used the term Monroe (Pontiac) for his roadster body here at the thread you are reading. I’m 90% sure this thread is where Brian came up with that nomenclature, although he may have discovered a more authoritative source since the earlier postings. At that time I shared it was my “Theory” that the “M” was for Monroe Body Company which like the Beaudett (also spelled Beaudette) body company was located in Pontiac, Mich. I assume that is why Brian used Monroe (Pontiac) body. I asked if any other 1913 owners had an “M” bodied car or if anyone had additional information, but as of recently, there had been no additional postings. I bumped this thread up for discussion. And hopefully someone near the archives will have the time to look at the accessions mentioned in the thread which may shed some additional light on what the “M” really stands for. What if any relationship the Monroe Body Company had with the Beaudett Body Company and why Ford used the term Pontiac for the bodies rather than Beaudett.

For the detailed discussion see the posting By Hap Tucker on Sunday, February 10, 2008 - 05:28 pm: above. I really think if received some addition input especially from the Accession 403 at the Research Center we might find some great additional clues.

Cautiously moved and Respectfully submitted,

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford Touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 01:40 pm:

I got a chance to check the '13 runabout I just bought, and the number is F236282. Does the F stand for Fisher? This is the number under the front seat.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 02:34 pm:

Larry,

I'm 99% sure that the "F" on a 1913 body would be for the Fisher Body Company. They were one of the major suppliers of bodies to Ford Motor Company USA. And Ford was not yet producing their own bodies. As shared above, in the Jul 14, 1913 letter (ref Bruce’s on line encyclopedia at: http://mtfca.com/encyclo/doc13.htm and his book “The Model T Ford” page 555)

JUL 14, 1913 Acc. 575, Letter 434, Ford Archives
Noted that 1913 Touring bodies were made by Herbert, Fisher, Wilson, and Beaudett. Apparently the Beaudett bodies differed in construction from the others. Beaudett bodies with a filler block on the rear door hinge posts apparently did not need the steel reinforcing pieces.

There is a very small remote chance that another body maker used an "F" on their bodies. If anyone knows of another body maker 1914 or earlier that used the letter "F" to identify their bodies, please let us know. For that matter if anyone knows if "Ford" ever used the letter "F" to identify their bodies once Ford USA began producing their own bodies, please let us know that also.

Larry, when you have a chance, please take a picture of the body number. If possible, please place a ruler or dime etc. in the background so we can better judge the size of the numbers. Also please clarify if the number is stamped into the wooden seat frame similar to Brian's number shown above or if it is stamped onto a metal tag that is attached to the seat frame. Are there any "dots," "periods," or "spaces" between any of the numbers or the number and the letter? Would you also please give us the approximate date your car was produced based on the engine number? You could use the serial number listing in Bruce's book or the site at: http://www.model-t-ford.com/tsernum.htm (don't put any commas in the number -- it won't work with them). Please let us know which method you used.

Thank you so much for sharing. I am hoping one of these days one of us will notice more of the trends and be able to solve the "what do those body numbers mean" and more importantly -- how can we tell which body maker produced which body so we can help folks find the best fitting sheet metal for their body.

Respectfully submitted,

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford Touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By johnd on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 08:12 pm:

Larry are you coming to Chickasha, I might have those two end caps (trim) you are looking for, I have a small pile of different ones this time.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 10:07 pm:

I'll check tomorrow morning on the number under the seat. I'm not an advanced computer person like some of you, so taking a picture is out of the question for now. I can measure the numbers for you though. Another aspect of this car that is interesting is it obviously has a late '12 block, with the casting date above the serial number, but is not legible. You can still see the screw heads on each side, and thats about it. The engine has an April date, so it must have been at the bottom of the pile. It doesn't appear to have been altered.
John, I'm going to Chickasha, but have found the end caps. In fact, the body is finished. Thanks for thinking of me.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 01:17 pm:

Just checked the number. The F is 5/16 wide X 3/4 tall. The body numbers are all 1/4 wide X 1/2 tall. The total length of all six numbers is 2 5/8" long, but are not all evenly spaced. The serial number on the brass tag on the dash is 236021, and is not the one with the neat numbers either. It is the plain stamped style, but definitely original. Even though I have vowed to keep my hands off this car until my '25 roadster p/u is finished, it is difficult to do. I replaced some un-original bolts this morning with originals. Makes me feel much better!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 09:18 pm:

Larry,

If you have grandkids or kids -- they can be a great help with picture taking and posting. Or just ask them to send me a copy and I'll gladly post it for you. Just click on my name and my e-mail address is there in my profile. No rush – but if you ever get a chance to have someone take a photo and send it, please do so.

Below is a picture of Bud DeLong's 1914 body number. Note that apparently by 1914 Fisher was including a date code with their numbers. Cam shared his body numbers from his 1913 and they did not have an obvious date code. So sometime in there it appears they switched their procedures or perhaps they had more than one Fisher body plant and some used one method and another building/plant used a different method? Please take a look at Bud’s numbers & letters and let me know if they look similar to yours or if they are very different or not. For example the “F” in his picture is a plain “F” with no additional lines added at the ends etc. I forget what those are called but they make the letters look fancier.



The gold color is the floor mat and numbers are stamped onto the wooden front seat frame.

Have fun at Chickasha.

Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter, SC.


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