We took an English couple on a family tour around South Australia's beautiful Barossa Valley wineries last weekend. The red car is my brother-in-law's 1925 colonial bodied tourer and thw woodie is my 1917 shooting brake.
At the historic Seppeltsfield winery we were greeted by an enthusiastic and excitable lady who was so pleased to meet my car. She asked if she cold wind the crank handle so I set her up and her husband took some photos, somewhat dis-interestedly.
She wanted to know how many times I had to wind the crank handle. I explained that it would start on one or two pulls when warm but I had to crank it over four times when cold to prime it and then it would go when I turned it on and gave it another couple of turns. She seemed quite satisfied with that, but then asked how long it would run.
"Until it runs out of petrol," I replied. Then it dawned on me that she seriously thought it had to be wound up to go. Slow old me ! Meantime the husband was walking off shrugging his shoulders and shaking his head.
And she wasn't blonde and wasn't drunk!!
Allan from down under.
Too funny!! And to think we let these people VOTE!!
I think I've told this before, but it fits. I take the TT to a local fruit stand from time to time. A young lady who works there likes the old truck and always admires it. One day I stopped in but was driving a modern car. As she waited on me she suddenly had that look of recognition and said, "You're the guy with the old truck you have to wind up!" I just said, "Yup."
I had the same thing happen. The conversation started with the comment, "Must be nice, not having to buy gas..."
My other favorite is the folks who believe that my speedometer drive gear is front wheel drive. How could anyone believe that little gear would actually propel a car?!?
Jerry: I tell them the speedo gear is for the antilock brake pickup. Dan
I have a '53 Ford Customline I drove during high school in the late 1990's. I used to tell my friends that it didn't have power steering or brakes, but it did have a voice activated headlight dimmer, which was years ahead of its time. I would prove it to them driving at night by saying "Ford Dim lights" and pushing the button under my left foot ever so discreetly. I imagine someone could convince these same folks that the later Model T's used an early form of voice recognition to auto-start the car, if your starter button is hidden under your foot. It was always a hoot as they didn't quite believe me but couldn't figure out how I was doing it.
I sometimes say, "Make car go", as I push down on the starter button.
But the automatic dimmer idea wasn't all that far fetched in a 50's car since GM offered the Autronic Eye automatic dimmer option as early as 1953. Nice idea at the time, less practical later om when roads got filled with large reflective signs so the lights were dimmed for every sign..
Chrysler used the same idea for the interior rear view mirror as an option in 1959, a better use, since only approaching cars from the rear triggers the function.
My 55 Caddy had an Autronic Eye dimmer that still worked when I sold the car this fall. Pretty good considering the unit had vacuum tubes. I included a GM dealership calibration/test fixture I had picked up at a garage sale several year ago.
My number one question is about the speedometer drive gear also. Men all want to know about the gear. The number one question from the ladies is what are the three can on the running board.
I sometime get asked where do I get gas for a Model T
For 40 years I was never asked what the gas mileage was on a model T until the price went sky high. Now I get asked all the time what is the gas mileage.
I drive one of my Ts to town for coffee every morning. I am often asked if I have a heater. I don't drive my coupe very often but when I do I can say yes because I have a manifold heater in the coupe.
Your story Allan is really funny!
One wee New Zealand story I read from the Model T era was a woman owner who took her car to the garage to have it overhauled. She told the garage to preserve the water in the radiator, because its Canadian and therefore colder than local water. True tale!
And we let them vote....
Dave Huson - When asked about the red, white and blue cans on the running board, I usually answer,..scotch, bourbon & gin!
I had a call a couple of years ago from a movie guy wanting to rent a "wind up car" for a TV show that was filming in Vancouver. I told him a had a few wind up cars! They eventually picked my 1912 Oakland touring for the show. And they did wind it up to pretend to start it....
My '27 roadster doesn't have a speedometer so when someone ask me how many miles it has on it I say none that I can document!
When I see a T with a speedometer I like to ask the owner why his car has the front wheel drive on only one wheel. Responses vary.
Steve, you have to stir the pot. I like it.
Doesn't anybody wonder how you can possibly wind the clocks works up far enough by just doing little short quarter turns on the crank? I remember the first time I got a free start on my '22. I must have had a look on my face like God himself was sitting in the seat next to me. But then I remembered who I was and realized I was driving the Model T from hell.
G. R. Does that mean you have an undocumented Model T?
If it is undocumented it can apply for federal assistance, vote in the next election, and attend a community college for free.
Hummmm I have thought about getting a birth certificate for her so the old girl could apply for social security to help pay for everyday expenses.