I am about to replace the firewall on My Dads old 1916 Touring.Should it be painted or stained. Pictures in books I look at have both finishes? I think a nice matt black would be ideal but would like to have it correct. Considering the bonnet former was fitted to the dash could the whole assembly could have been painted body color.
Thanks in advance.
Dash was painted black.
Does your front spring have leafs that are pointed at the ends? 1916's had a unique front spring used from about December of 1915 through about September of 1916. I call them a "pointy leaf" spring and they were the transition spring used between the last of the tapered leaf and the first of the regular clipped leaf type use then to end of production.
Both Laurie Mahon's original 1915 tourer C32937 and Ian Todhunter's original 1916 tourer C65871 both have black painted firewalls.
Is there a photo of the 1916 front spring available?
Note that Warwick's 1916 touring is a Canadian production. I do not know if Canada did or did not use a pointy spring. "IF" they did I do not know the dates. Sometimes they did things earlier than USA, around the same time, or much later.
From the discussion at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/43281.html?1198287177 John Regan had the photo below:
Hap l9l5 cut off
My Canadian 16 has the tapered on the rear but all the leaves on the front are a square cut ends.
Found a photo to post of the square ends. The shockers are fitted from new by the importer, body builder and retailer, Duncan & Fraser.
Toddy's 1916 has a normal, tapered front spring.
Thankyou all for your input. The new dashboard will be painted. I will post pictures of the finished article. John, I have not ever seen an example of the kind of front spring that Hap posted the picture of , on any Australain/Canadian Model T. It is indeed very unique!In fact if I ever saw one on a car I would have said it was incorrect or made up,as today is the first time I have ever seen or heard of that time of transitional spring. It is always good to learn som ething new about Model T's. Thankyou.
Warren Mortensen several years back had a pointy leaf spring on his early 1917 T. He had always thought it was an aftermarket item as did everyone else although the car appeared to be an unmolested car fresh from a barn. What surprised him was finding a Ford script on the top leaf when he had the spring off the car. He asked me to check at the archives the next time I went there and sure enough it was a stock item. The good news that made it a close call was that the Ford script was NOT on the early versions of this spring but was added later in production. Had he had an early version, it would have likely been tossed as an aftermarket spring when it was not. The picture posted above is of the front spring on my son Johnny's 1916 Roadster. It is a very early car.
The purpose of tapering the ends of the springs was to weaken the ends and thus prevent all of the spring pressure from being concentrated at the ends. By tapering it was thought that the force of the entire sping would be spread over a longer portion of the end of the leaf. Tapering the thickness of the spring ends is not an easy process. Tapering the ends by narrowing in the other plane would accomplish the same thing since a narrow spring also is weaker than a wide one. It would be much easier to simply cut the spring to a different shape end than to taper its thickness.
I have a very late '15 US production that most feel has never been molested too much. Maybe true, maybe not, but it comes across well and passes the usual comments and challenges from boo birds If it was touched at all, it was touched pre-50 as the provenance from there on is well understood as 'not touched' only 'refreshed'by the two owners since.
My firewall is 'painted' but also a bit unique in that 'paint' can be a subjective term.
Depending on who close you want it...Where there is a 'ring' grain, I'd call it 'paint', all else I'd call it a 'wash' My guess is that it was but one or maybe two near spit coats and that is how it dried with the softer parts 'sucked' in and now semi-matte.