My mother has been working on getting the old touring car going. Neither her or I are big fans of stock fan usage on model T's. She just had the engine rebuilt and the radiator recored. The intent of the car is for my younger brother and sister to drive the car. Unfortunately they are not model T savvy. So instead of taking the chance of possible engine overheating while @ lights, or catastrophic fan blade failure resulting in a punctured radiator from a broken fan blade here is the solution. A ball bearing fan hub(late style) and a plastic (hideous) fan. When the hood is closed no one is the wiser.
Both parts are available from most model T and A suppliers.
I cant see the fan. Does it give more air flow than stock? More air flow could mean the engine needs to work harder to gain flow. Thus less HP. The old bushing type really is fail safe if you keep it lubed. If your rad is clean there's not much need for a lot of air flow from the fan unless your driving very slow.
My question is this: Is the plastic fan really safer from breaking than a reproduction steel fan?
A fan shroud would be a a wise choice also.
In theory the plastic fan is balanced. It is the same O.D. as the Model T stock fan but the blade pitch is slightly steeper. This is the alternative fan offered for Model A's. It is a 6 blade fan.
The plastic fan isn't sealed on the end, Thus a bushing hub will not work in this application.
This is essentially a service free unit now.
Ford "T" fan next to the Plastic "A" Fan
Here is a brightened version of the fan installed... It is black on black so it is hard to make the fan stand out.
I think I would be more worried about my younger brother and sister knowing how to drive the car!
They, are fine drivers. They are just not keen to the little things that need to be noticed when you drive a Model T without a fan. Rather than give them a crash course and have them not notice something and potentially ruin $4000 worth of engine and $500 worth of radiator. I figured this is the cheaper alternative and it doesn't detour from the pleasure of enjoying a Model T. This is nothing more than a "you can do this too"
Mike, you are really reaching out on this one! In an effort to put your mind at ease, I am the second owner of a '22 that I have had just shy of 60 years. It has the same fan blade on it that was put on it in June of 1922. I have driven it tens of thousands of miles in those years without giving a thought to the fan blade going haywire. You are more apt to win the bazillion dollar lottery than a fan blade coming apart. One other thing, as long as the car is moving, the fan isn't necessary. I agree with Mike Taylor above. What you should be concerned about are the brakes. Good luck
Model T fans have much to be desired. Even when checked every time you drive, a crack can develop which could potentially lead to a broken fan blade while in service.
My Dad bought a new brassworks rad for his T on the first tour his prior inspected fan blade broke and wiped out his 5 day old radiator. Now, he was counseled to remove the fan before the tour but insisted it needed it... he was wrong and he paid for it.
This is just one of countless fan blade through the radiator stories I have been told.
Modern belt driven fans have clutches that disengage at speed. Model T's don't have this option. The continuous Rpm and vibration will lead to a broken fan blade eventually in a stock model T fan.
This Plastic fan is an option that shouldn't fail... I hope
After almost 30 years, I've had a fan break which cost me a radiator core and another fan that I found with a cracked blade before it broke. I still use stock T fans but I check them for cracks every year or two.
Ken how many 3 blade fans do you want me to take pictures of? How about the one I took off the car and replaced with the plastic version? Oh and to be facetious in June of 1924 when you weren't looking someone might have changed that fan because it broke.
Also, the brakes work great, it is a Model T!
I am a big proponent of total fan removal. I don't do parades and avoid long light cycles. I have been told that any speed above 7mph the model T fan actually will hinder the air efficiency through the radiator. I tend to believe this statement, but have no facts to back it.
Mike, You need to be more adventurous with the Model T. How about....
(1) The double Bladed Fan
(2) The fan With A Manual Clutch
(3) The center spring loaded fan
(4)The Rooster Tail fan!!!!
All original Model T fans are eventually going to break. It's the second law of thermodynamics.
I totally disagree with all of this! I have over 50,000 miles on an original brass hub fan on my '13, and never a problem. I also have a '25 with the original fan hub and blades, all rebuilt with genuine nos Ford bushings, & felt seal. The problem is all these people out there that think they know more than Ford. It will never happen!
Mike, It's not that I really need one but I really like it. Thanks for sharing.
Mike thanks for sharing. Your a brave man.
Larry, it's the law. They are ALL going to break (eventually).
The original brass hub fan from my 13 touring is safely hanging up on the wall where it belongs!
Why?....Because there are cracks in the brass hub and it's junk.
I run a later steel hub fan.....just one of the many changes/improvements that Ford made later on. The fan still needs to be checked over the yrs. to insure the rivets are tight and the blades have not cracked.
I love my model T Ford.....however, I do not look to the east when saying Ford. There are many things on our model T's that Ford could have done better.
You guys can hang them on the wall, or what ever you want! I choose to run mine on the car where they should be. Brass hub or steel hub, the blades are still riveted on. If they are tight, I'll take my chances! As far as the late fans go, I haven't had a problem with them either. Maybe I have more faith in the product than others.
Of course anyone can do as they like, but I really hate saying "I told you so", which I have done many times over this exact issue. Consider these facts:
All fans will eventually break (second law of thermodynamics).
Many fans have already broken and as more break your chances are constantly worsening.
What do you guys do in traffic?
It takes five minutes at less than 5 mph for the red to come up in the motometer. I seldom find that kind of traffic.
The thermostat assures that any time the air is able to cool all the water in the rad faster than the engine needs it, a reserve of cool is built up, and the motometer red drops out of sight, where it is nearly all the time. That doesn't happen with thermobarf, does it?
Oh, I learned from Tom Carnegie on this Forum several years ago to remove the fan. He ran Thermobarf at the time, and may yet.
I have never had any trouble at a stop light. It takes my car over ten minutes to boil. If I have to wait longer than that, I shut my motor off. I run no water pumps or fans on any of my T's. I do have a thermostat in one. The only time I've had trouble is in traffic situations when long lines of cars are just creeping along. There were "fanned" T's having problems then too.
Running with no fan is not for everyone. It requires good equipment along with some brains and vigilance. Sort of like driving with stock two wheel brakes.
When I drove my 10,000 mile, 48 state "Super T Tour", most days were over 100 degrees and I did fine the entire trip without a fan.
If any of you are worried about fan blades breaking, no brakes, noise from the transmission, no turn signals or brake lights, rear end coming apart, rods possibly knocking, spokes loose, wheels wobbling, or any of the potential problems of driving a 90 + year old car then leave it at home or better yet let me come and get it. I promise I will drive the heck out of it and give a report on any of the above problems when they surface.. KB
This is a Model T forum, didn;t you learn ANYTHING from Boll. LOL
Who's yellow Pantera? Looks like Bob Cullpepper.
Just looked again.. There's the Bear. Yup!
Ron, who's Boll?
I took that pic of two fast cars. Here's two smart cars:
No time to talk here, gotta get out and drive!
Sorry Rick, I only see one smart car, and its not the new one.