I am not new to the old car hobby but new to Model T's.
I bought what I thought was a mid year '15 runabout' engine number 847910 but I am now having doubts about the body. I have included some interior shots specifically the firewall area from inside. I know that the firewall is incorrect and I have the correct one that I ordered from Snyders.
Can anyone give me a picture of their '15' firewall area and the shield at the top of the firewall from inside?
Mostly everything else appears to be correct including the rear end but the cowl area is bothering me.
Thanks for reading
That's a much later cowl - approx. 1919 or later.
The notch to accommodate the radiator radius rod appeared in the 1917 model year.
The strap with the two bolt holes came out even later. I don't know when that occurred but I would say sometime in 1919.
Also - after looking at your photo again, I can see the angle iron brackets where the body attaches to the cowl. That is also an indication that your body is much later.
That serial number indicates Wednesday, June 13. That's just two and a half weeks before the end of the model year, so maybe they ran out of 1915 ribbed pedals. My mid-June car has ribbed reverse and brake pedals, but the low pedal is unribbed.
Like yours, my car appears to have the wrong firewall, so the correct 1915 dash shield doesn't fit. Mine has a later dash shield.
Here's the dash shield that's in mine.
I believe this is the correct 1915 dash shield, but it doesn't fit my incorrect firewall.
Here's a wider view of the interior with the floorboards installed.
Thanks for the info and pictures. Guess I will have try and find a '15' runabout body or just drive it the way it is.
I bought it to drive like the rest of my junk, not a trailer queen or show car in the lot. Lol
Welcome to the forum and to Model Ts! You are probably correct about your car’s body being a later 1917-1923. A lot of folks used to toss the original 1915-1916 body if it needed the wood replaced or a lot of other repair and put a later 1917-1923 body on the chassis. They fit fine. And while the 1917-1920 look closer the 1921 with the skinner arm rest still fit and function fine (you will also need the oval gas tank of the ones with the lower front seat).
You will need to show us some additional photos to confirm if car’s body only had the top cowl panel of an original 1915-16 body replaced with the top cowl from a 1917-1923 or if the rest of the body is also a later 1917-1923. Or if it is a mixture of multiple years. There is an excellent thread called “Smoking Gun” 15’ and 16’ or is it….? at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/13259.html It has lots of photos and details on what an original 1915 – 1916 body would and would not have.
As Erik has pointed out the half moon cut out was introduced with the introduction of the 1917 model year cars. That was needed so the could install the radiator support rod that was higher on the dash than the 1915-1916 (also other earlier cars – but they didn’t have a metal cowl). And in general the later the body was produced the more metal it will have in it replacing more of the earlier wooden skeleton.
If you look on the left hand side of the floor board riser, most of the later 1915 to 1920ish open cars originally had a body number stamped there either into the wooden riser or attached as a metal tag or when the wood was replaced by steel – Beaudett stamped the number into the steel channel. Some of those will have a date code with the year and month the body was produced. If your body has that it will make it very easy to tell what month and year it was produced. For details on where and what to look for please see: “Home for the Holidays” at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/40322.html) and let us know what you find.
So far, we know for sure the top cowl is later (or was made to look later). Note there have been a few folks that took an original 1915-16 body and mounted it on a later 1917-1920 chassis and wanted it to look correct so they would make changes to make it look more like a 1917-1920 body. If you work at it you can take almost any 1915 – 1920 body and make it “period correct” for any 1915-1920 chassis. You need the same front cowl piece for the year, the door locks and strikers for the year, the wood kit for the year, the arm rest for the year, the windshield brackets, frame, and hinges for the year, the correct seat lids under the seat springs etc. But it can be done. Oh and sand off the body number if it has the wrong year on it so other folks won’t know or just fill it with paint.
Below are two views of a 1915 top cowl section. You can see that there is NOT a half moon cut out. You also see on Steve Jelf’s photo the top of the cowl goes straight across and does NOT have a half moon cut out like your cowl top has. [Also the correct 1915-early/mid 1917 windshield brackets & hinges].
The good news, any 1909-1927 Model T Ford is a lot of fun to drive, work on, research etc.
Recommend you find the local T club near you and join them – they will be a lot of encouragement to you. If you have not already read one of the postings about Model T Safety please take a moment to read over some of the comments at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/154102.html http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/50893/69429.html http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/13483.html and http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/411944/411927.html scroll part way down to the safety part. Some of those repeat but there is no reason for any of us to repeat them in real life when we can read about them and avoid them.
Again welcome aboard to a fun hobby.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Everybody loves the '15 runabout! It looks like yours is pretty good. (How about more pictures? Both whole car and important details?) Mine needs a lot more work than yours does, but is next on the list to be done of my project piles.
I am one that wants to make my cars appear as close to right as I reasonably can (most of the parts I have for it are correct '15). That said, unless you are going for an award winning trailer queen, it is pointless to make it "perfect". I would "correct" that notch in the cowl because it is visible and has been highlighted by discussion in recent years. I have been playing around with model Ts long enough to remember when most hobbyists had no clue as to what was incorrect or not. That is one of the reasons why so many cars have wrong parts on them in spite of the fact that they may be "original" cars to begin with.
It would be interesting if you can find the date code on your body. There are people that can tell by looking at the details (like the angle iron braces or size of the arm rests) to within two years of when the body was installed originally. Once the car is together, many of those details are hidden by upholstery or other difficult to see under places.
From what you say and show so far, it would appear to be a fairly real '15 and should be treated as such. Over the past 50 to 100 years, many parts have been replace for a huge variety of reasons. Whether the entire body, or just the cowl, was changed, I would recommend that if it is in generally good condition, fix a few details. Restore as desired, and enjoy.
I look forward to your updates and photos. (They should help me get mine put together right)
Welcome to the affliction!
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
A 1915 dash shield has a cutout area for the horn tube to pass thru. I can't remember who posted this picture several years ago but it illustrates the dash shield used during 1915 model year nicely.
Steve Jelf, I may be wrong but the picture of the steering column shows an offset bolt through the firewall. That indicates to me that the column is a 1913. This was the only year for the offset. I THINK???
But it looks like it has the horn wire tube!
That is because it is not a '15.
R.S. - look a little closer - it appears as though the flange was re-drilled - there is an empty square hole just above the existing bolt head.
John Regan makes the correct dash shield. The serial number tag is wrong, and is located in the wrong place too. My suggestion is read Bruce McCalleys book, and study it good.
Royce, it was a reference to eliminate it as a 13
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome and helpful tips. The previous owner had already installed safety glass and Mr Stutzman called this afternoon and my wheels are ready for shipping. The coil doctor finished my coils this weekend and shipped them today so maybe I can get it running by the end of next week !!
Although the snow is a little deep around here at the moment.
I guess I need to decide which tires I am going to buy (not wanting an argument, lol )
I will take some more pics and post them tomorrow .
Did you rebuild your coilbox with the FunProjects parts?
I know some people may think this is a myth, but I know it's not...There are more 1915's running around than Ford ever built. This looks like one of them.
Disclaimer: For purposes of trying to get as many things correct as possible, I'm pretending that my car is an actual 1915 T, and not a put-together 1915, which I'm almost sure it is.
Correction: I misstated the date of Jamie's serial number. It's July 13, 1915, not June 13. That's twelve days before the end of the 1915 model year. I got mine right when I said mid-June. It's Thursday, June 17, 1915. The factory was closed July 25 to August 9 (beginning of the 1916 model year), so both cars are very late 1915.
Royce is correct about my steering column not being 1915. It's a later one, having the stamped horn wire tube. Fortunately I have a column with the small tube and the horn button mounted on top. Eventually I'll restore and install it. Bruce shows this as correct for 1915-1917, though in my reading of the encyclopedia it's unclear to me how much it was used before October 8, 1915, if any. Bruce has it under the 1915-1917 heading, so I'm calling it close enough.
John Regan's website shows two dash shields for 1915, early and late (1915-1917). The early one has the cutout for the bulb horn tube, and the later one doesn't. My car and Jamie's are about as "later" in 1915 as you can get, so I think the dash shield in my picture above would be correct. It seems I just need the correct firewall to go with it.
Yes, that is often said, that there are more 1915 Fords existing today than Henry produced.
But on page 462 of Bruce's book we see there were 308,162 Model Ts produce in Fiscal year 1915 wich ran Aug 1, 1914 to Jul 31 1915. Many of those would have been 1914 style tourings but from around Mar 1915 to Aug 1915 they they would have been almost all 1915 model year cars. Mar 31, 1915 the last engine (not car but engine) serial number was 737,938. And the last one in Jul was 856,513 on Jul 24 [the engine shop was closed Jul 25 to Aug 9] ref page 510 - 511 Bruce McCalley "Model T Ford." That is 118,575 serial numbers. I do not think there are 100,000 plus Fords called 1915 Model Ts. But I do agree that many later 1917-1920 Ts were converted to 1915s. And a lot of 1915 cars had the bodies tossed and replaced by what the owner thought was an identical 1917-1920 body rather than being rewooding the original body.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Mike, if the question's for me, yes, I did.
I have not but will have a look at what they have offer
As requested here are some more pics. I suspect that its a later body but even after having wheels built, $1500 in other parts plus the coils, I probably have about $11,000 tied up in it.
As suggested by some, I will drive it the way it is and pick away as time and parts present themselves
With the exception of the 1915 items such as the motor, front fenders, passenger rear fender, headlight rims, windshield, and coilbox, most of what I see appears to be a much later car.
Frankly, it wouldn't be worth the time and effort to try and make it a true 1915 as you would end up replacing a majority of the parts.
Enjoy it as is.
Yep, it's a combination of 1915 and later parts. I agree with the notion of enjoying it as it is. If you want a true 1915, the best approach would probably be to find another car that's complete or nearly so. My 1915 is considerably more correct, but I still have to replace several items that are wrong for the year.
Good advice !!
If I decide that I really need a correct car I can always sell this one buy another one.
Who cares what is correct or not. Drive it and enjoy it. It is a Model T, and thats the only thing that matters. It is a nice one.
I just ordered another set from Fun Projects. Along with the plastic, I suggest you get the contact set also--the cheap ones from other places have the holes in the wrong places and don't fit well--pay the extra $15 more and get the good ones. Total will be about $100, but you're done with it.
Steve,-- You may someday want to hide a small battery to help with starting, and, a battery terminal on your coilbox would be handy!
Actually the 1915 box has a BAT terminal. That picture I used to show the FP kit is from a later car.
I didn't have a picture showing the FP kit in this box.
Steve,where is the nut that goes on that hood rod?
Waiting to install. This was when I had the radiator out.
Steve Tomaso, I think you are correct. I also seem to think the 13 flange bolt that is offset is the right lower and not he left lower. Wonder why they did this on this car??
I thought re-drilling was rather odd also ? I have an early column with the single off-set hole - I'll have to go look now.
Hap, I know personally of half a dozen 1915's running around the valley here that were not built by Ford. These cars were anything from 1919's to 1921's, but since the 1915's were considered "the pretty Ford" their owners opted to make some cosmetic changes to their cars. Most of the time this merely consists of changing out the headlight, side/tail light parts and putting on brass hub caps and top props on the open cars...one I know of went as far as changing out the fuel tank from oval to round.
For me I like the look of the 1915's too, but my car is a 1922...I just choose to put more brass on the car then is normal on a 22 (I like brass)...and I don't even mind polishing it either.