I bought a T today, it runs and drives pretty good. It's hard to get rolling in low gear but eventually runs fine in low and high gear, and reverse. Adjusting the band from the outside doesn't seem to help much. Do I need to change the band? I should check the oil level in case that's the only problem.
The car is licensed and registered as a 1913, but I couldn't find pictures of Runabouts after 1912 with a mother-in-law seat unless this was a very late '12 that sold as a '13. Anyway, someone put the car on a later chassis with a non-starter 1918 engine. I'm not sure if the complete body is original, but the main seat section looks original.
I have a solid brass windshield frame but don't have a clue how to mount it and it needs the hardware. There are holes drilled in the dash for brackets. Does this windshield use the brass support rods that connect to the radiator?
Any comments or suggestions are welcome. Thanks for your help!
You will have a lot of fun with the car. I would recommend you check out and join the closest or best if there are several near by, Model T Local chapter. See: http://www.mtfca.com/clubpages/chapters.htm and http://www.modelt.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5&Itemid=15
I’m 99% sure that the body is most likely are replacement body or one that a previous owner built up. The front seat is not shaped like the standard Ford seat of the 1909-1914 time frame. I would guess a buggy seat was used. However, it may turn out to be something special and regardless it will start lots of conversations. Note if you go to http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/1913.htm it will show you the bodies that Ford used during 1913. Also if you go to the photo gallery at: http://www.mtfca.com/gallery/index.htm you can see Model Ts of all shapes, years, and sizes.
I would recommend getting it running and driving and then deciding if you want to find an original body and make it into a 1918 or whatever year you have the most correct parts for on the chassis. Good news the 1909 to 1927 Model Ts are all fun to drive and work on. You could keep the car as it is or put a speedster body, depot hack, or any other type of body you wanted. Unlike most of the new cars – the 1909-1925 Model T Ford car chassis will accept any 1909-1925 car body [Ton Truck body can be adapted but the car bodies bolt right on.] . Sometimes the fuel tank, radiator, hood, and other items will need to be changed to match the year range of the body. But the body uses the same body mounting points for all those years.
For mechanical questions Steve will post his recommended books (sorry I don’t have his link handy). You can also read some of the information online – Victor Page’s Model T Repair book is on Google Books and has lots of information on the Model Ts.
If you are new to T’s – please read the safety items – it can save you some expenses:
Use safety wire and not lock washers or cotter pins on the two studs holding the wishbone to the underside of the engine.
Lots of safety items http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/50893/69429.html
Over center steering – shouldn’t happen on the later Ts – but if someone replaced your later teens steering gear housing or rebuilt it without the lock pin – it might happen: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/80257/86345.html
Types of safety wire: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/41859.html
Example of loss of brakes caused by drive shaft failure: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/47804.html
Top T tips – many of them are safety related also: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/80257/85208.html
Tour safety check list: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/44331.html
And if you have a gas hot water heater in the garage – be very very careful. The float in a Model T Carb will sometimes stick (or trash in the valve) and the carb will leak gasoline. Not too bad if there are no sparks – several homes, garages and cars have been lost when a gas hot water heater was near by and someone started the dishwasher other item that caused it to turn on the burner at the wrong time. Note gas fumes tend to be heavier than regular air …. so they tend to hug the floor. If you adjust your garage door to let the mice in and the air out – that is a temp work around. But replacing the gas fired hot water heater with an electric heater or having the gas one relocated away from the garage is the best thing
Again congratulations on your “new” Ford.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Neil, what you've got there is not a Model T. It doesn't even have parts of any Model T on it. Maybe you should consider doing something to dispose of it. First, I suggest you load the "car" on a flatbed truck and give the driver enough money to deliver it to central Minnesota. Then PM me and let me know what the truck driver's name is and I'll call and let him know where exactly he can dispose of it. And it would be prudent on your part if you would sign the title you got with the "car" (you don't want any incriminating documents lying around) and send it along with the driver. I'm sure the driver and I will determine the best place to drop the "car" off. Oh and before I forget; send the parts for the windshield with it too.
Actually, it looks like it could be a lot of fun model T. No, it is not a "proper era correct Ford body". Without looking very closely at the construction points, it would only be guesswork as to whether it may be a correct after-market type body (probably it is not original era).
The good news is, it doesn't matter a lot. The fenders and body style are more proper for 1912 than '13. The chassis appears to be mostly later. As it is, it will not qualify under HCCA rules for HCCA national meets. As it is, there are some strictly pre '16 regional groups it will not qualify for (some of us are snobs). Rules vary with local clubs and HCCA regional groups. You would be welcomed in most local clubs and national model T club events as well as many other organizations.
So have fun with it. You can chose to enjoy it mostly as it is, turn it into a "proper" '13, a "proper" '19, or even a decent '12. If you want to make a "proper" '12, start over.
Welcome to the affliction!
Oh. And just so you know, I belong to one of the regional groups that will not accept it as it is. I like the group. I like the cars. I also belong to several clubs that would welcome you and personally would like to follow that car on tour for a few hours.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Congratulations on your new, ancient automobile! You've hit the mother lode of expert information and advice, 'cause we have folks on the forum here who have been eating, breathing and sleeping Model T Fords since Santa Claus' beard turned white.
When it comes to learning to drive the Model T, the best way is with an experienced teacher. The 2nd best way is to wait for weekends and practice in an empty public school parking lot.
With the floor-lever locked in the neutral position, practice starting and stopping with minimum throttle till you can do it in your sleep. Then, without help from the floor lever, practice shifting, finding neutral and stopping. Whenever practicing, keep your eyes on the road, not on your left foot! It took me about a week of practice to feel comfortable and confident, but most folks are more talented than I.
Don't ever feel concerned that your Tin Lizzy isn't "correct." Most were updated from time to time by Ford dealers (and others). That's all part of the historical legacy of the individual cars, so just make yours safe, drive it carefully and enjoy the heck out of the hobby. Welcome aboard!!!
I've sen plenty of T's on HCCA tours that were less authentic than that one. Any with a Ruckstell, for example, that wasn't yet invented in the brass era. Any with a later engine with starter and generator, ditto. Any red 1915s, ditto, and I plead guilty to that one, although long enough ago that the statute of limitations has expired. Yeah, we have some snobs, but they aren't winning.
Gil Fitzhugh, Morristown, NJ
Looks like a fun car. Perhaps someone used a body from a different make of car, or a buggy, who knows. It looks great - I would complete the project using that body for sure. The proportions are excellent.
You could say it is "custom coachwork on a Model T chassis" because that is what you have.
Thanks for the encouragement and suggestions. I'm bummed it's not a T body, but the rest of the car is T and should be fun to drive.