Does any one know the correct length of the front top iron for a 24 roadster. I am using the irons that came with the T . They are approx 26 1/2 / 27 inches long . vertically This puts the rear bow and curtain approx . 5 inches behind the seat , toward the turtle shell. The height of the rear curtain would be approx. 12 inches. Most roadsters I have seen the rear curtain is vertical and higher . Mine would have a 5 inch slant from the nailing strip to the rear bow . The main top will fit perfectly with the irons after the rear curtain is attached .
Any ideas or install as is ?
Glenn Anthony email@example.com
I just got through installing new reproduction irons & bows from Lang's, along with a new Classtique top kit, on my 1923 touring/pickup. Assuming you have the correct "one-man" top bows, the linkage allows a lot of variation in the position of the rear bow. Most of the discussion I saw on the forum before I did mine was to set the back of the rear bow about 1 inch behind the back of the body using a plumb bob, it came out looking great, see attached pics.
A couple of tips:
1. Use push pins to temporarily mount the rear curtain before you tack or staple it for good, same with the main top, it allows you to make quick adjustments.
2. Be careful to keep the tacks or staples along the front bow and the rear bow in a reasonably straight line - remember, the tacks or staples eventually will have to be covered with a rather narrow strip of "hide-em". Plan ahead for this with the locations of your tacks or staples.
You did a Beautiful job . Wish I had one half of your talent .
Your back iron looks to be straight while mine is curved . My T was in storage for 50 years the owner's son said they were the correct irons . Suppose some one customized the irons to give the top a lower profile ?
I don't know about talent, maybe beginner's luck mixed with plenty of patience. This was my first attempt at doing a top. I worked alone, so having a pneumatic stapler helped, because it allowed me to stretch and hold material where I wanted it while I stapled it. Be prepared to remove, adjust and restaple as needed, just have patience!
I highly recommend Classtique Upholstery as a source for the top kit. I would have used them for the seat kit as well, but my car already came with a Cartouche seat kit when I bought it.
Regarding the curved rear iron, do you mean curved slightly near the bottom pivot point? If so, I think you have a 1926-27 rear bow, but I don't see why it wouldn't still work. Talking about the 1926-27 cars, according to page 392 of Bruce Mcalley's book, "Model T Ford the Car That Changed the World", it says:
"The top bows and sockets were quite similar to those of the 1923-1925 models except for the curve at the bottom where they fasten to the body. Side curtains, supplied as standard equipment, were new and designed to open with the doors. This was made possible by the use of a metal rod which fit into a hole in the doors and which supported the door sections of the curtains."
Here is a picture of a 1926 Roadster rear bow that I found elsewhere on the forum, is this what your rear bow looks like?
Note also the hole in the door for the side curtain rod, it appears to be trimmed out with some sort of light colored grommet.
One other tip - my rear curtain fit almost perfectly into place without hardly any stretching required, but the main part of the top was another story - You need to set the top material in the sun for an hour or two to get it supple so that you can stretch it. When I first laid the main part of the top on the bows, it looked like it would be too narrow, the rear corners of the main top are supposed to meet and cover the flaps of the rear curtain.
After stretching and final stapling:
Hanging the rear curtain a little higher to start with probably also would have helped, but it worked out ok anyway.
If I can do it on a first try, so can you, just work patiently and follow the directions in the kit. Also, don't trim off any excess strapping or material until you're sure things fit the way they should. Good luck!
Yes , my rear top iron looks like the one you have shown for the 26-27 T , with a slight curve .
My T is titled a 24 , however in checking the engine number show it to be a 25 . Wonder if it could have been a late 25 model and they used the irons for a 26 .
Thanks for the encouragement and happy motoring .
Wow .. my top is way different than this .. but then .. I KNOW it's wrong (now that everyone's told me. :-) ...
Those new irons and bows make everything look so 'simple'. I'm surprised the back 'curtain' comes so far forward. Seems like it would act as a big wind scoop, and billow out ... or blow out .. the back window. Have you had it 'up to speed' yet to see how it does? It certainly looks nice though ...
I've seen another setup where the back curtain is actually cut way back .. much narrower at the bottom where it attaches to the back of the seat than at the top. Is this a design from a different year, then?
I believe that 1923 was the first year for the so-called "one-man" top, earlier years had a different top configuration, see pic below of a 1922 roadster that I pulled off the web:
HI, Mark ... yes ... that's the style I was thinking of. It also has the 'visor' / air block over the windshield. I somewhat fabricated one similar, but only because my irons setup was so 'off', the front bow was about 15" or so in front of the windshield.
I noticed that even with the wind block, the top billows like crazy, and I thought back to this design where the back 'wall'/ curtain only went as far across the back, that was mostly flat. Seems like that would not 'catch' so much air.
The '22 you posted above looks much like I thought mine probably should .. except I have cowl lights as well.
Thanks for the great thread, and photos! GOOD reference!
You did well. I did my 15 touring last year and it was much easier than I expected. What really helped was I had the body off and sitting on boards on the floor.
I just measured a front socket, and it is 32 3/4 from the curved end around to the pin. The way to tell an original socket is the embossed common sense place in the middle of the socket. Both the left and right sides are the same.
Thanks for the kind words. Having the body off would definitely make it easier. Luckily, I had a small footstool to help me reach the front and sides. I just climbed up and stood in the pickup bed to work on the back part of the top.
I ordered a custom set of side curtains (stock shape, but much larger clear windows) from Classtique this week. I also got a set of side curtain fasteners from Lang's. The fastener set came with two male snaps and 22 male Murphy fasteners. Two of the Murphy fasteners are taller than the other twenty, can anybody tell me where the two taller ones go?
Mark .... With the iron saddles in the back, I assume this top should fold down? Does the forward iron & bow, fold 'back', or drop down once the other 2 are back? Seems like it would be in the way of the seat, if it folds down (forward).
When the top is up, the arms of the front bow fit into hooked sockets in the middle bow.
After you lower the top, you pop the arms of the front bow out of the hooked sockets in the middle bow and move them to the tabs lower down on the rear bow, then lay the front bow back over the rest of the folded top, like so:
By the way, here's how I stow the saddle straps when the top is up:
Ahh .. sorry .. I didn't see the hook in the upright.. looked like it might have been permanently connected. That's normal then.
Wow ... those sure look like a cushy saddle and strap!!! :-)
The taller ones go on the embossed area on the front top sockets, and at the front of the arm rest by the metal cap, because there are two side curtains that attach there. BTW, I wouldn't punch any holes for the common sense fasteners until you are absolutely sure that is where they have to be. I make paper patterns the same exact size of the curtain, and punch a round hole where I believe the eyelet will be. If it works, I punch the hole, if it doesn't, I tape it up and try again until I get it perfect. Sometimes I have to do this three or four times. I personally like my side curtains to be exactly like Ford made them, but this is a free country, for a while, and you can do as you please.
Larry, thanks for the tips. If the side curtains were just for display, I would get them made stock.
While I hope I never get caught in the rain, if I do, I want all the visibility I can get.