We have a late 1925 coupe here in Adelaide that has been in the family since 1952 when found complete and drivable. Closed cars are extremely rare here, only 3 genuine cars survived; this coupe, a 1925 sedan and a 1925 coupe. To be honest I do not know a lot about them other than what I have read and gleaned from places like this forum.
I have only ever seen this car 3 times in my life. The owner has granted me access to look at the car in his shed. Where would I look to find the body number? Can anybody help?
David, on my '25 coupe the no. is stamped in the wood frame close to the floorboards on the left side, just in front of the seat parallel to the step plate. Is the one you have pictured L.H. or R.H. drive, I can't tell for sure from the picture. If L.H. drive, the no. may be stamped on the R.H. side, I have no idea. Hope this helps. Dave
It is RHD Canadian car and very interesting indeed.Thanks Dave for the tip. Would anybody have a photo of the body number so I can see what I am looking for? How big are the letters/numbers?
If it has a Brigg's built body, there should be serial number on the metal floor board riser on the passenger's side. It would be embossed from the rear so the letters are raised and it should end in a 'B'.
If it is a Ford built body, there may or may not be a number stamped into the top of the wooden sill just inside the door on the left side. It would be between the rocker and the floor boards. It should be a series of letters and numbers. Usually you can decipher the letters to indicate which branch plant the car was assembled at. The meaning of the numbers is unknown.
Ford didn't start stamping branch numbers on the cars until sometime in 1925 and may not have done it at all plants, so there is a high probability that there is no number.
All of this is for American production. I don't know if the Canadian and other places marked them or where they put the marks.
Interesting car. I'd like to see more photos of it.
Nice car. I have a 1925 coupe that has the original engine. I totally restored the car in 1974. The restoration replaced most of the wood. I searched for any body number, and never found one. The car was built in July 1925.
Thanks everybody. What is intresting about this car is its manufacture during that interesting change over period from the standard car to the "new improved". The body has the old steel firewall, but the holes for the coil box have been blanked off and the car fitted with the box under the bonnet. Even the running boards are different; the radiator shell is stamped "Made in Canada" as is the RH running board, but the LH is stamped "Made in USA". the car is fitted with balloon 21" wheels. Here are a few more photos. Any
Thanks everybody. What is interesting about this car is its manufacture during that interesting change over period from the standard car to the "new improved". The body has the old steel firewall, but the holes for the coil box have been blanked off and the car fitted with the box under the bonnet. Even the running boards are different; the radiator shell is stamped "Made in Canada" as is the RH running board, but the LH is stamped "Made in USA". The car is fitted with the balloon 21" wheels. Here are a few more photos.
Ooops, double posting, sorry.
I didn't think Ford started using the engine mounted coil box until the 26-27 models. It looks like there has been some modification made to the car.
Looks like the engine and transmission is 26/27. Maybe, this is a late 25, or maybe a later engine. I don't think its likely the truth can be found out at this date.
I think you will find that Ford Australia built earlier 1926 closed cars with 1925 Bodies. There are a few in captivity in australia. There is an identical on to this car in sydney, last i heard, owned by a Ford Dealer. So you will find lots of 26 mechanical parts on the car that most likely are original. John Page could probably tell you more.
I agree 100% with Mark. The car is C616XXX, January 1926 build. This is an original car found in 1952 and "restored" in 1967, that is paint and some trim work. Our US friends need to remember that in Australia we work on a calendar year and not fiscal. Hence this car has been always dated as a very late 1925. We did not see the "all steel" body until April 1926.
Typical here is an earlier style body foisted over the border to Canada. The body mated onto the components of the day, then shipped out to the colonies where we can't complain. For us this was the model with nothing to compare it against. However, similar to the US the closed cars seemed to get the factory modifications first.
I am not a closed car expert, and I agree John page can probably tell is more.
As you both know I have been working on a register of "Surviving Original Import Australian Closed Car " . Thanks to you and other people from various States we have gathered a considerable amount of information on these rare ( to Australia ) cars. It was Mark who first made me aware of the fact that quite a few of these T's that I call Hybrid T's were turned out and sold to the public as the current model for the year. It seems that Hubert French, who was Ford Australia's first General Manager ,was very keen to promote the Closed Car to the Australian public. My thinking is as David has already stated the earlier superseded bodies were snatched up by our buyers who were only to glad to have a Closed car in the price bracket that was affordable. Surviving Closed Cars are extremely rare here in Australia. I have been working on the Register since February 2010 and to date we only have fourteen confirmed survivors. Of the fourteen six are the so called Hybrid variety. They all seem to be late 1925 early 1926, but all have the earlier ( 1923 - 1925 North American ) bodies with the improved running gear. When I got our car in 1978 I thought that at some stage in it's life the running gear had been switched so I set about replacing the running gear to the earlier 1923-25 style.
I hope this answers some of the questions. Thank you David and Mark for all your help with tracking down cars and getting the Register to the point we are today. Best Regards, John
Here are two pictures of the car as we got it in 1978.
Thanks John for all the effort you have put into the register.
I believe the closed bodies were imported to Australia and fitted to the later running gear at the Geelong factory. Not sure about the other states.
With only 14 known survivors of closed cars in Australia is there any guess or sales records as to how many there were originally sold in Australia back in the day?
Were closed cars not as popular as open cars?
If you had to guess at what happened to them all would they have been scrapped during the war for their steel value?
While doing my research into the Australian Closed Cars I was fortunate to have stumbled onto some sales records for Model A Fords, and as a result was able to contact the authors of the records. These records had been painstakingly transcribed from an original Ford Motor Co. Australia ledger. I asked had they found any Model T records, and to my surprise they had also recorded the Model T records.
Here are the relevant two years to this discussion.
Best regards, John
I know the "hybrids" have the 1926 front cross member cut off to suit the earlier front mudguards. I need to check this car to see if it has this mongrel feature.
John has spoken about the bodies being shipped to Australia and then assembled here. I am not sure about this because the "Dalgety’s” assembled in this period use nearly all earlier components such as the earlier chassis, 23" wheels, 8" rear ends, coil box on firewall, one piece front engine mount without the casting for the 26 style bottom radiator surround, the list continues.
So my question is why would the closed cars feature the improvements when the tourers and roadsters did not? I am curious to know why. Wow, another question to add to our list!!!
Dalgety bodies were 1925.
We are talking about earlier 1926, after Dalgety Bodies with older 1925 closed car bodies imported from Canada and fitted to 1926 chassis & running gear in Australia.
Something just doesn't quite add up here with the timing of the improved chassis. Remember last year we pretty much decided that the first of the improved cars in Australia were first released in May 1926. Link to that discussion below.
If that is the case why are we finding the early 1926 Closed cars with the improved chassis? David has set me thinking on this and may change the way I have been looking at the whole deal on the Closed " Hybrid Cars " I welcome your thoughts David & Mark .
Best regards, John
Interesting isn't it? Good stuff...
John & David
I presume open car bodies till May were Dalgety Bodies.
Closed cars were sold in Aust prior to May.
I am sure all closed bodies were imported to Australia from Canada.
Tooling up for the new production of open car bodies and assembly finished (for Touring at least)ready for sales in May. (26 style cars)
Possibly we had a surplus of closed car bodies and the only chassis in production at the time were 26 style. All the older chassis were used up in the more saleable open car range with Dalgety Body.
Please note very few closed cars were sold prior to May 1926. Closed cars sales trebled in May 1926 suggesting some sort of promotion.
Engine numbers may give a clue. I have found Dalgety bodies with latest number C598,726 Cast Jan 5 1925(no bolt holes at rear of cylinders)and early 1926 block only with number C598781, Cast Oct 24 1925 (bolt Holes at rear of block).
C616008 Touring is the earliest 26 I have found in a car With Body A512
something to think about
Dear mark & John,
I have been giving this issue a lot of thought on this. I agree that the tourers and roadtsers are "Dalgety's". I have not seen a "Dalgety" with the later running gear, I am not saying it does not exist, but only I have never seen one. We know the "Dalgety" had many standard features such as the flatter springs, lowered king pins etc, but all still mounted on the earlier style chassis. Another problem through the early 1926 period is the stocks of cars. French knocked £10 of the sale price of a "Dalgety" to move the stock. The hunt is on to find a late, unmolested "Dalgety".
All I can say is we have an overlap occurring here. What is fascinating is we have always know Ford Canada was different to the US, but now we have Ford Australia straying away from Canadian production. Good stuff!!!