This engine is labeled a Model R engine photographed in 1937 at Ford.
It has a removable head, mono block and NRS crankcase. Does the transmission look longer than an NRS transmission? Jerry Van (or anyone) is this an engine at Piquette now?
Was there only One Experimental engine like that built? I have seen another picture or two of this Model N Engine converting into the T like engine head.
A few years back there were several experimental NRS motors in the back of a truck at Chickasha. Don't remember who brought them but they went to another collector as I remember.
Just got back from Chickasha and really tired. I'll have to look at the Piquette engine closely to see if it's the same one. I believe I spot one or two pieces shown in your photo that are not currently on the one at Piquette, but those parts may have been removed over the last 77 years since that photo was taken. In your copy of this photo, can you zoom in enough to make out an engine number?
Brass Car Guy,
The engines that you saw at Chickasha years ago are the two currently on display at the Piquette plant in Detroit. One of them was most likely the one pictured above, (will confirm), the other is a prototype Model N engine.
This is the engine at Chickasha in 2012.
At Piquette 2013:
Just the block:
The cars the en block NRS engine was installed in:
Great photo. If you have a higher resolution copy, you probably will be able to see what the serial number on the crankcase is. Below is zoomed in on the 75 kb photo that was posted. I could not make out any numbers – but they may or may not be there.
If Ford only produced one prototype engine with the removable head – then it is the same engine. But perhaps they made more than one?
Note they could have had issues with the bearings and it would have been easy to change out the complete crankcase with crankshaft, rods, pistons, etc. and if they did that the crankcase has the serial number on it -- not the cylinders and the head.
I believe the engine number on the removable head prototype at Piquette is 2552. I have photos of #2552 with a removable head. If someone can confirm what the serial number on the one at Piquette is, that would be appreciated.
Below is a photo of a Model N,R,S,&SR engine that was used to test the prototype head.
Dan Treace posted the photo below from Les Schuchardt’s auction in 2012. I cannot locate the thread address at the moment.
And Jerry Van confirmed in the same posting that the engine Les sold is now on display at Piquette.
Below is the photo of serial #2552 with the removable head when it was being transported back in 2004.
And in the higher resolution photo we can zoom in and see the serial number is 2552 shown below:
Note the 1937 photo clearly has a pulley on the front of the camshaft for a mechanical oiler.
That is NOT typical for a Model N engine but typical for a Model R, S, or SR engine. But the Model S engines in Trent's database are only listed up to 2335 which was shipped 9/30/08. Model S Roadster (SR) engine number 2552 was shipped Indianapolis, IN 6/27/08 so I don't think that was the engine crankcase that was used. And Model N engine number 2552 was shipped 1/25/07 -- sold to Stebbs & Cahill but no City or state listed. The plot thickens.
The highest Model R engine serial number listed in Trent’s database is 2546 listed as “Coupe 2nd hand” shipped Sep 4, 1908. The engine number listed before that one is 2532 shipped 10/21/1907. [For that time frame the database has approximately 20 to 25% of the serial numbers.]
When I zoomed in on the picture of engine 2552 when it was being transported -- it did NOT have a pulley on the front of the camshaft to run an oiler. Of course it did not have manifolds, carb, etc. either. Those were added after the photo was taken. But I thought the camshaft might have the had the bronze/brass colored cover that helped to keep the oil from leaking out as clearly shown on Trent’s Model N in the photo below (from Trent’s website at: http://jupiter.plymouth.edu/~trentb/ModelT/N662/ModelN.html
Compared to #2552 front camshaft bearing/cover shown below:
But another photo of engine 2552 from the other side shows the front camshaft bearing allowed the camshaft to be exposed so a pulley could be mounted to the camshaft.
So while it is very likely it is the same engine, having the crankcase serial number would be a help.
And your other question ref the transmission -- it appears the same to me as a standard NRS&SR.
Note also that the engine stand is the same on 2552 as the 1937 photo. But -- that is also the same engine stand used for the prototype Model N engine that is also on display. So "IF" they had 2 prototype removable head engines, then they could have easily had the second one mounted to the same type of stand.
Again thanks for posting the photo.
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While the photos of the two removable head cylinder assemblies you posted are similar – they also have some differences. Note the one on the NRS&SR crankcase has a flange all the way around the bottom where the cylinder only photo does not have a flange at the front or back.
The NRS&SR crankcase photo has the core plugs that are threaded like the 1909-earlier 1913 engine blocks (later called freeze plugs when they changed them to a pressed in style).
The NRS&SR crankcase one has many more bolts holding it to the crankcase. They apparently used the standard NRS&SR crankcase and made the casting of the cylinders to fit it.
If you have additional information on the photo of the cylinder only section you posted, please point us to the previous thread or information etc. That assembly would not bolt up to a standard NRS&SR crankcase, although it might bolt onto a modified crankcase if the bolt holes in the crankcase were relocated. And of course from the single photo I cannot tell if it is the same size, larger, or smaller than NRS&SR cylinders and crankshaft spacing.
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Only information I have on the picture of the cylinder assembly is that I saved it on October 2, 2013. No idea if it was from a thread created that day or not.
I think this is number 2552. This is the best I'm able to do on a closeup. It looks like a faint outline of "2552."
You could be right Rob. I tweaked it a bit to try to make it more decipherable.
The cylinder only photo looks like a Metz c1918 to me.
Mark – you are correct that Royce’s “cylinder assembly” shown below is for a Metz.
I tried to find some better photos but I did not run across any that really showed the area as well as I liked. I believe the photo below shows the head, cylinder assembly and crankcase and you can see where the cylinder assembly is mated to the crankcase. If you want to view the source, it is from a nice Metz site at: https://metzauto.wordpress.com/category/wantedfor-sale/ -- scroll way down to see the Metz engine for sale.
Below zoomed in to show where it bolts to the crankcase:
And from: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/179374/254985.html Eric Bruckner posted the illustration of a Metz engine below. Note Part #2607 is the cylinder assembly and part 2601 is the crankcase and 3625 is the oil sump.
Royce – the Metz cylinder assembly probably changed hands once or twice before you rescued it in 2013. In Oct 2010 Keith Townsend asked what it went to using the same photos see: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/167867.html And at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/179374/233375.html in Sep 2011 Keith posted the same photos again and mentioned he had it for sale. If you put a Model T head gasket on top of the cylinder assembly and it fits well except the center bolt hole on the gasket would need to be enlarged a little – that is one major indication that it is a Metz cylinder assembly. Ref the posting Metz vs T at:
I thought I had seen that photo before, and in this case it helped clarify that the engine cylinder assembly you have is not one of the early Ford prototypes but from a Metz automobile.
When/if you have time, I have a few more questions that will may help us tie a few other things together. [Ok – I’m guilty – most folks don’t care about the details and the cars drive great with or without additional information.]
First, you mentioned above that the removable cylinder head engines were used in the Landaulet and Touring cars that you posted. Do you remember where you obtained that information/conclusion? I’m months behind on a lot of things and I could have easily missed a posting or announcement etc. related to that topic. The last information I have is that Ford Motor Company USA clearly developed and tested the removable cylinder head [ref: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/411944/420980.html?1391864951 and a few other posting where the excerpt from the oral testimony of Joseph Galamb from page 138 of Stern’s “Tin Lizzie” is quoted and is again posted for clarity.
Bruce included photos of engine #2552 with the prototype head on page 6 of his 1907-1909 information in his “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia.”
And I’m 99% sure that Carl Pate in his book “Pate’s Early Ford Automobile Encyclopedia” also shows photos of engine #2552 but I could not easily locate that reference so I will look for it later.
There was a reference in the Vol 20 NO. 6 pages 589-590 of “The Horseless Age” Oct 16, 1907 that discussed several “Rumor has it” items concerning Ford. Many of those “rumors” did not ever reach production such as engine based on the NRS (the SR was yet to be introduced) but with a 3rd pair of NRS cylinders added to make it a six cylinder. In the same article they mentioned
“Rumor in this instance seems to be supported by the appearance of a Renault town car in the Ford New York salesrooms, which is being offered at about $2000 less than its purchase price, and from which, it is said, the designs of the new Ford town car were completed. Like its prototype, the Ford machine will have the four cylinders in once casting, and like all Ford 1908 models it will have high tension magneto ignition.” Well the Ford town car was made (landaulet and town car versions). But clearly the high tension magneto in all 1908 Fords did not occur. And so far to my knowledge the 1908 Fords prior to the Model T did not have all four cylinders cast together. I believe the reporter saw and/or new about the prototype Ford engine #2552 but that he “guessed” wrong on it being supplied in all the cars. My current understanding of both the Landaulet and the Double Phaeton is they used the standard Model N,R,S & SR engine and transmission. They had some method of extending the drive shaft to increase the wheel base. But the high/low speed side control, water pump on the radiator, steering columns, rear spring arrangement, front axle arrangement all lead me to believe they are the N,R,S, & SR chassis that is lengthened. The radiator and hood are the shape of the Model T which is still to come [although the radiator extends lower and has a built in water pump to mate to the gear on the front of the N,R,S, & SR Flywheel (which was mounted up front).
I do not recall seeing any evidence that the N,R,S, & SR engine crankcase with the 4 cylinders cast in one block with the removable head was put into production. But if you or anyone else has additional information or leads to support or correct my limited understanding, I would greatly appreciate learning the new to me information.
Do you or does anyone else have any leads on when and where the photo of the Landaulet that you posted was taken and/or when and where it may have been published that could help us track down additional details? . Bruce included it in his “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia” and it has been posted a few times before (perhaps a lower quality copy?). When I contacted Bruce hoping to find out where he had obtained the photo, he shared it had been an early magazine but he did not recall which one.
Also if you or anyone else has additional information about the illustration of the Double Phaeton (touring) car, where it appeared and when that would be appreciated. You can see a picture of the “Double Phaeton” on page 29 of Chapter 7 of “Pate’s Early Ford Automobile Encyclopedia” along with a testimonial from an owner in the sales brochure where he states he purchased the car [Double Phaeton] in Aug 1907. The same photo from that sales brochure has been posted in the past [see: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/257047/309506.html?1346726889 ] and the complete page from that catalog is shown below:
zoomed in on testimony:
The SR roadster cowled touring was advertised in the USA also -- see page 40 of chapter 3 of “Pate’s Early Ford Automobile Encyclopedia.” It has the Jan 5, 1908 The Daily News, Denver Co 3/4 right side view and then a Mar 1, 1908 same full right side view advertisement in the Minneapolis Sun Journal. But it always had the N,R,S, & SR chassis layout with the full elliptical springs in the rear, low/high speed lever, RHD, but T style hood and top of radiator.
Thank you all for your inputs and thoughts on this and all the other postings. There is always more to discover and re-learn about our cars. We may never know for sure what did or did not happen, but as we share the clues we each discover or know about and even the questions we have, hopefully we will gain a better understanding of what more likely occurred or could have occurred.
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Rob and Andrew,
I think the 1937 photo has 2552 as the crankcase number. But hopefully someone will one day be able to look at a better copy of the photo and say for sure "YES" we see it clearly that it is 2552. Or that it is some other number. But the shadows I see line up nicely with the 2552 stamping on the known engine.
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We have posted the photos above (touring and Landaulet) over the last few months. The Landaulet was posted to the EFR forum last year or the year before, possibly by Andrew Brand.
There seem to be a number of advertisements and references to "pre T" cars in late 1907 and early 1908. Also, we have financial records of Ford selling a "rumble seat" car in October 1907 that was not an S Roadster, and cost a little more. We also have Trent Boggess research showing Ford Ledger sales of two or three "pre Ts" in early 1908. I believe those cars were listed with numbers in the 700s.
1907 German magazine ad:
This detail of the engine at Piquette shows the crankcase number is 2552. The numbers are lightly stamped.
Yep, that was my Metz block one I found a few years ago.
When I found it I did not know what it was, but immediately though of the "enblock" NRS engine.
I almost wet my pants when the guy at the estate sales said he wanted five bucks for it.
After I found out it was not a NRS enblock block I had find out what it was. I finally determined it was a Metz block, then I got hooked up with some Metz guys and found a buyer, Harold Mann. It was delivered to him at Bakersfield last year. I was glad it found a home.
I have other views of it in anyone would like any.
: ^ )
As Tom points out, the Piquette engine, with removable head, is 2552.
I visited the Piquette engine this past weekend and confirmed that it is the same engine as shown in the 1937 photo. The position of the core plug square holes is identical, as well as other small features. Since 1937, the water elbow at the front of the engine has gone missing. Hap is correct in noting that the camshaft pulley was missing when photographed at Chickasha, (while on its way to Spearfish, SD). At the time I purchased the engine, it had a pulley on it. It also had an oiler, manifolds, carburetor, coilbox, etc. Those add-ons were done by Les Schuchardt while he owned it. I removed most of those pieces as they did not appear with the engine in early photos, such as the one Rob shows. I did however leave the manifolds in place. To me, it just looks better that way.
Would it be possible to check the stroke on the engine (maybe you have)?
One of the identifying small features I mention above, that ties in the 1937 photo to #2552, is a small "X" mark on the front crankcase cover in both the recent Piquette photo and the 1937 photo. (Although very hard to see in the 1937 photo.)
FWIW, in 1956 or '57 or '58 I visited The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield village w/my parents. While wandering around the grounds my Dad and I looked in a side door near the back of the powerhouse. There was a whole bunch of experimental engines just laying on the floor there, the one I remember most was an air cooled X type, IIRC it was an 8 cylinder. There was some other air cooled engines there also.
Sound's like X engines,which were both air and water cooled. Bud.
The stand that is under this engine appears to be the Henry Ford Museum "standard" engine stand. It is also the same as the stand under the prototype N engine at Piquette, as well as engines still on display at The Henry Ford.
I have not checked the stroke on 2552. Maybe at some future date I could do that, however, even while cleaning this engine, great care was taken to not disassemble or alter in any way, the engine as it was received.
For instance, if it was not absolutely necessary to remove a side cover, then the side cover was left alone. Note the positions of the cam bearing retainer bolts. They are the same today as in 1937. Most of Les's add-ons have been removed. Today there are brake & reverse pedals on the engine as well as a breather tube, neither being shown in 1937. Since I did not know when they were added, or by whom, they were left on the engine. They had the same dirt and grime on them as the rest of the engine so they must have been there a very long time. Maybe they were present but not installed for the 1937 photo? Might also mention that several bolts were missing, as you can see in the 1937 photo & the Chickasha photo. Reproductions of the missing bolts were made and are now installed on the engine. They are obvious by their fresh shiny look.
I guess all of this is to say that I'm inclined to not tamper with the engine at this time.
Is there a way to compare the outer portion of the upper engine/block to determine if the stroke is longer than the standard NRS engine?
If it is, this may be a "missing link" engine, possibly the same engine used in the car sold in Oct 1907 or in the cars in the Ford Ledger database compiled by Trent Boggess?
The Ford October 1907 Gain/Loss Reports shows one "Laundaulet" (how it's spelled on the report) and one "Rumble Seat" sold during the month of October, 1907 (these are not in the NRS columns, but separate hand written entries). Then, the list Trent B. compiled from Ford ledgers show three Model TL (T Landaulet) to "Chas Miller and Bros.", Washington D.C., dated February 13, 1908. The, numbers 813, 815 and 816. Another "T" is listed going to SC in May 1908, #876. As Trent has said, these ledgers are not complete, so I suspect there were others sold too.
In December 1907, Chas Miller and Bros. ran the advertisement and the newspaper published the photo below:
I believe these early Model T did not have an internal magneto, and maybe this is the engine used in these first prototype Model T?
I'll try to think of a non-invasive way to determine of the strokes were the same. However, if you're thinking that this engine was bumped up to 20HP, increasing the stroke would not have been the easiest way to do so. They would have needed a custom made crankshaft. Most likely, since they were completely changing the combustion chamber anyway, they would have just bumped up the compression ratio by reducing the combustion area. Perhaps this was done, as Ford may have anticipated that the "new model" would be a heavier vehicle. May also have been done to really put the theory of a head gasket to the test.
To your comment, "If it is, this may be a "missing link" engine, possibly the same engine used in the car sold in Oct 1907...", I would have to say that this definitely IS a missing link engine, (even though it's not missing), in that it clearly is a design caught halfway between NRS & T. As to its being in a car that was sold, I highly doubt it. If it ever got away from Ford it wouldn't exist today.
I'm not suggesting this engine was ina car, sold and then recovered by Ford (although that's possible too). There is a Model K engine that Ford sold years ago that was also on the same style stand, and I think that engine was in a car (or NOS) because it had an engine number of 615, a 1907 engine.
I had not thought about it,,but I suppose this engine couldn't have an increased stroke unless the bottom of the engine (portion below the mains) was also deeper (so much for that idea). Thanks for posting information about this important piece of Ford history,
I would not call those late 1907/early 1908 cars "Model T's". At least not a Model T in the sense that we generally recognize today. I don't deny that it seems Ford may have used the "T" moniker a bit early but, to my belief, those cars are in every way mechanically, an NRS vehicle. The only thing that suggests "T" is the shape of the radiator. Again, this is my take on it.
Yes, not T by our definition. They were calling them a 20 hp engine, and the car was listed with a 97 inch wheelbase, so really a hybrid between the two models. They are also listed in some descriptions with a mono bloc, so quite a bit different from NRS too.
Does your engine have a place to add an exterior magneto? I think the six cylinder NRS car in Australia (definitely an NRS style engine) has a pedestal or location where an external magneto might be placed.
What about posting pictures of a early water pump T engine for comparison?? I think the water inlet/connection on the block looks similar but what about the missing front cover??Bud.
There is no evidence of any magneto arrangement.
Jerry,Yes the early T water pump was gear driven off the front of the engine,no fan belt.Bud.
It is quite interesting to see the experiments Joseph Galamb spoke of when he described the special Model N engine with detachable cylinder head. As usual, Joe Galamb is telling the truth from the grave.
This engine like NRS looks as though the water pump was external ( in the front of the radiator on NRS).
Another great data point of this NRS engine that is completely unlike any actual Model T engine.
Except the "data points" that it has a removable head and mono block. More like a T engine than any Ford engine before.
The one piece cylinder is unlike a Model T engine.
A Model T engine has the cylinder and crank case cast as an assembly.
The NRS engine has the cylinders and crank case made as two separate components, a much more costly and time consuming method from the standpoint of both part manufacture and assembly.
While it was certainly a modest improvement casting four cylinders together instead of the two pair found in the typical NRS, it is simply an NRS engine at the end of the day. Ditto the removable cylinder head. Not revolutionary, but evolutionary.
It's documented as noted by Hap above in the excellent Philip Van Doren Stern book "Tin Lizzie".
So many things to investigate so little time.
First thank you Jerry and your friend for putting such a wonderful piece of Ford history on display for all of us to see.
Rob thank you for posting the additional information. I looked but I did not see (I could have missed it) anywhere in those advertisement where it mentions what type of engine is in the car. I.e. Model N,R,S, or SR or prototype removable head, or later Model T, or other. I’m trying to determine if there is a clear indication in one of the references to a removable head or cast in block cylinders being used. So far the only clear reference I have seen was prefaced with “Rumor has it” in the Vol 20 NO. 6 pages 589-590 of “The Horseless Age” Oct 16, 1907 which is quoted/typed out above and is shown again below [but without my reasons for believing the engine was NOT placed into normal production sales. If you want to see that again – please see the posting above By Hap Tucker in Sumter SC on Sunday, March 23, 2014 - 08:30 pm: and scroll down.]
Royce above you stated, “The cars the en block NRS engine was installed in: and posted the photo of the S Laundalet and the S or SR Double Phaeton at: By Royce in Dallas TX on Saturday, March 22, 2014 - 11:14 pm:
My question to both of you and others is has there already been documentation linking a removable cylinder head or cast in block 4 cylinder to normal sales posted or found? If so – I have missed it (or unfortunately filed it and forgotten I filed it). Or are we making a hypothesis or assumption that because the horsepower is listed as more than the normal 15-18 usually associated with the Model N, R, S, & SR that it is the removable head style engine based on the design shown on #2552 above?
Again thank you all for helping us locate the information and put it in one spot so we can better understand it. And for many of you that don’t have a 1906-09 Ford – please keep an eye for the information also. Some of the N,R,S, & SR engine parts drawings were found in the Ford V-8 engine microfiche at the Benson Ford Archives several years ago (1990s?). So you may be looking a 1927 information and find the clue to solve this mystery!
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While i agree Tin Lizzie by Stern is a excellent source of info,as we have learned from Rob,it's not perfect!! Warm with Corn,Bud in Wheeler.
My take on #2552 is that it was a "one-off" test engine, to try the removable head concept. I have seen no evidence to the contrary, but have seen Joe Galamb's reminiscences which supports my thoughts on the matter.
If the period articles reference a 1907/1908 era 20HP engine, (either real or forecast by Ford), there is no telling whether it was the removable head style or something else. Mention of en-bloc engines of that same time period are interesting but also non-conclusive. Were these "en-bloc" references based on actual engines or, again, publicity statements, made by Ford, as to what is being planned? Did the success of #2552 cause Ford to be optimistic about the en-bloc design to the point that they began to mention it to the press?
In a past forum posting there was a photo of a Touring of this "in between era", (I believe it was the cover photo of a Model T Times magazine). I don't have a copy of that photo handy but I'm wondering if it has the Model T looking radiator with an NRS style water pump and, if in the article, there is a picture of the engine.
The NRS era touring seen on the cover of Model T times is a recreation made by the late Cecil Church. The article inside the times can be read in this thread: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/331880/385461.html?1377921506
"The last intact example was last seen in the Detroit area at the Davis & Foster truck salvage yard in 1935"
From reviewing many parts drawings at Benson Ford and a lot of extrapolation on my part, it seems like the progression from Model NRS to Model T was not a straight line - and definitely not short.
Try this for discussion:
Well darn it...
By November 1907 articles appeared about the new Ford light touring and landaulet. The specifications I've seen that were included in many of the articles said the new car (some articles referred to it as "Model T") was a 20 hp 97 inch wheelbase car. Additionally, some of these articles said the car was enblock or monoblock.
A few of the articles I was able to quickly find:
This article was a compilation of several by the A.L.A.M.. Dated December 1907, it mentions the "Ford Junior" is one of several makers who will have a "one block" engine for 1908. Also, notice the reference to Renault:
This October 1907 article said Ford was bringing out a new car, and that it will, like the Renault, have a four cylinder motor in one casting. This article also says the new car, "like all cars for 1908" will have a high tension magneto:
While much of the above article may be rumor or unfounded, there may be some truth that Ford appeared to "copy" Renault. However, the copying may have just been the fact that Ford was moving to a one casting block, similar to the Renault, and that's how the reporter came to the conclusion a Renault for sale in the Ford New York showroom for less than new price (or who knows). Regardless, as early as October 1907 the "rumor mill" seemed inclined to think Ford was coming out with a new light touring and landaulet with a one casting engine.
This January 22 1908 article says Ingersoll (Rockport IL) has sold two milling machines to be used on Ford engines that "are to be en block, one block". It also says Ingersoll has already received blueprints of the new engine (I suppose to design/build the machine to needed specifications?).
At the bottom of this article, mention is made that the new 20 hp Ford towncar is based on the $3500 Darracq Town Car (another variation of the Renault Town Car above?):
By April 1, 1908, the Model T appears to have evolved into more of what we consider the first Model T, with left hand steering, now 100 inch wheelbase, and magneto (although this says high tension):
I think there may have been several evolutionary "pre T"s, "ST"s or whatever letter or title one chooses (the towncar was referred to as "Model W' in one advertisement) assign. My own unsupported guess is that the wheelbase may have been expanded from 97 to 100 inches when the internal magneto was added to this mix, sometime after December 1907, but again, that's my guess.
I have a few more articles that refer to the "mono block" in U.S. articles (1907) but I've not been able to put my hands on them at the moment.
Hap, I believe I sent them to you, so maybe when you have a chance you'll find a few more of these articles).
Always more to learn,
To put this into context, Ford Motor Company by this time was the largest automaker in the world. Henry Ford was in complete control of his company, and I would think was taking a giant leap of faith (Henry Ford didn't seem adverse to risk, from what I've seen) and stop making several models to focus on one chassis. I suspect most automakers would have diversified and added models after experiencing growth like Ford, but FMC was doing the opposite, moving to one model. So everything had to be right. I can see why the new model was continually held up, as Ford made changes and tweaks to "get it right".
With the benefit of hindsight, he (HF) made the right decision, but at the time, I'm sure this had to be a time of great stress and decision making for everyone concerned with design and management at Ford Motor Company.
my two cents,
I am guessing the removable head "Super Model S" engine was installed in the Landaulet and Double phaeton. The reason is the added radiator capacity in the top tank.
I am also guessing the stroke of the "Super Model S" engine is the same as a normal NRS engine. Bore size may be larger than a Model N, hence the revised horsepower rating of 20, versus 18 for the Model N.
An engine with a larger bore than a typical NRS would require a larger radiator as we see on the "Super Model S".
I am guessing too, but I am guessing that no "Super Model S" engine, (removable head S engine), ever made it into a car that Ford sold to the public. In a test car, yes. In Landaulets & Double Phaetons shown at auto shows, maybe.
A larger radiator would also be needed for a vehicle so much larger than an NRS, regardless of what engine is under the hood.
I can't remember where or what book it was pictured in but there was a picture of a two lever 3 pedal car! Of course the caption read it was wrong as they never made any that way? Bud.
I am curious if Ford had experimented with a removable head as early as late 1907 why he didn't use them on the Model N,R,S & SR Models for 1908? Did he have too many of the two cylinder heads already produced? Or was it not proven as of then? Thanks Mark
I knew I'd seen a story about a sugar mill having hidden one-off Ford motors along time ago. Anyone having old Special Interest Auto magazines might check to see if it lists this engine.
The 1907 New York auto show listed three new Ford cars, all with 20 hp, 97 inch wheelbase and battery ignition (non magneto):
This Detroit Free Press article mentions the taximeter (towncar) at the 1907 Detroit auto show:
This Denver Post half page Ford advertisement lists a Model S coupe, Model K touring and roadster, Model N and Model T on December 29, 1907 (indicating this is not a glorified NRS or "super S", but a Model T by Ford Motor Company terminology):
And as we know, Charles Miller and Bros. were offering a Model T as early as December 29, 1907:
And Trent Bogess research in Ford Ledger Sales show four Model T sold in February and May 1908. Interestingly, three of those sales (February) were to Ford Agent Charles Miller and Bros. (with engine numbers 813, 815, 816 and 876).
One 20 hp Ford also places in a competition in early 1908 too. I'll post it later.
Thank you for the lead. If you click on the link you posted and then click on the small pages of the article, they will load larger size. For me to read them easily I copied them and put them into Word so I make the print bigger. (Holding down the ctrl key and rolling my mouse only made the print on the border around the page bigger but not the page.)
I did not read it in detail, but it did list 40 plus engines most after the T. But the number 4 engine in the list was estimated to have been made in 1907. An inline 4 cylinder, with an overhead cam! 2 1/2 by 5 inch bore and stroke water cooled, 98 cubic inches. I did not see a photo of that engine in the article, but it may or may not have been in one of the background photos. I would guess it was probably sold when the Henry Ford and Greenfield Village (now called just the Henry Ford) sold several cars as well as the prototype engine above #2552 and the original prototype Model N engine which is also on display at Piquette. If anyone has one of those old auction flyers and you see a 1907ish inline four cylinder engine listed please let us know.
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Thank you for clarifying that you were guessing that the removable head style engine was used in the Landaulet and Double phaeton. Also that you were guessing and coined a new description “Super Model S” to describe the possible larger bore or other possible ways the removable head engine based on the NRS&SR could have been raised to 20 hp vs you said 18 but it is typically shown as 15-18 in Ford advertisements of the time. And also that you guessed that the larger radiator would be needed by the higher horsepower engine.
I also like guess/speculate as it gives me a “hypothesis” that I can test to see if it appears to be true or not. But I wanted to make sure that you did not have a reference that clearly stated that or proved that. I am trying to put together a response, but as usual, it takes me longer than I thought it would.
Again, thank you for the clarification.
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The British used a taxable horsepower formula, so they rated the Model T at 22.4 HP for tax purposes. So we know that if an engine is rated at 20 HP by the British it is not a Model T.
Taxable horsepower is derived strictly from bore size and number of cylinders. So it is illogical to think that the removable head "Super S" engine has an increased stroke, because if it did, that would not increase the horsepower rating.
Thanks for your research into these interesting cars and events.
Below are endurance results that appeared in "The Automobile" magazine, January 30, 1908. All the cars listed finished with perfect scores, including three Fords. I can't say the 20 hp Ford is one of the new pre-Model T. However, since both a 40 p (Model K) and 15 hp (NRS) are also listed, it doesn't appear this a mistake or typo (but it's possible). And, it could be a Model B Ford, although I doubt a Model B would compete and have a perfect score in 1908:
The following link is to a two page article dated October 1907. A "Motor World" magazine report says the writer was given access to the new Ford 20 hp cars and gives a brief description. Also drawings of the towncar, touring and runabout are included:
Thank you for sharing that clue. Note, in this case the English advertise you posted before (and I re-posted with the reference of the sales brochure it came from) has the Horse Power listed as 15-18. I would guess they were not using that mathematical formula at that time or they would have had a single rather than a range of horsepower. But I will try to look into it some more. It clearly was an issue later with the Model T as the displacement of the engine caused it to be taxed at a higher rate than some of the competition such as the Austin.
Again thank you for putting your time and effort into this one also.
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Weren't the early Model Ts rated at 22 HP? And, later they downgraded the compression to only 20 HP.
Thank you for your enthusiasm and dogged determination. That is what has enabled you to compile an overwhelming amount of evidence to refute some of the previously accepted conventional wisdom about the Model K Ford. It may also change how we look at the removable cylinder head N,R,S, & SR engines or it may verify what some of us currently believe to be true.
Favor to ask – as you add information, please continue to provide the reference as you have been doing with the items above. It makes it much easier to catalog and cross check items. Also please highlight anytime you happen to see the term removable cylinder head or cast en block etc. associated with an advertisement or other documentation. In theory I would also see it in the original – but I recently changed glasses and I miss my old glasses.
All -- I am slowly going through the information and trying to place it in the following categories:
1. Supports the theory that only the N,R,S,&SR chassis features were used (including extended frame versions but without any removable cylinder head or cast en block cylinders.
2. Supports removable head engine, cast en block, on Model N,R,S,&SR crankcase was placed in Ford cars and sold as normal production prior to Model T # 1 which was assembled Sep 27, 1908 and shipped Oct 1, 1908 ref the microfiche of the original shipping document on page 58 of Stern’s “Tin Lizzie”; also in Bruce’s “Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia” in the reprint of Trent Boggess’ article “Model T Number One” that originally appeared in “The Vintage Ford,” November-December 2004.
3. Supports the anticipated availability of the Model T Ford.
4. Could support either of those two theories above.
5. Supports some other position.
If you or anyone else can think of a recommended addition to that “theory list” please let us know.
Again thank you for all your support in locating additional information.
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The English horsepower formula was controversial and used sporadically. When one sees the 22.5 rating assigned to a Ford, it is apparent it is an NRS. In most advertising and article instances, the traditional horsepower rating was used, as shown by these two English magazine "Automotor" advertisements:
And, this article appearing in the the English publication "Motor Car Journal" refers to this Model K (I knew I could work a Model K into this ) competing in the 1907 Scottish Reliability Trials was listed as a "40 h.p." car, the U.S. hp rating:
I need to correct my post above. I mistyped the four "T"s attributed to Trent's database research as 1908 sales. Those are 1909 cars. i apologize for my error and any confusion it may have caused.
Royal Automobile Club (RAC) horsepower was the standard for comparing British cars to one another. It was eventually adopted by law as "Taxable Horsepower" in about 1920, so by no means was it sporadic.
The formula for RAC HP is as follows:
h.p. = (D2 x n)/2.5
D = the diameter of the cylinder in inches
n = the number of cylinders
Try it on a Model N and a Model T. See what you get.
By the way, the Denver advertisement is ludicrous. The illustration of the 1907 Ford Double Phaeton was lifted from the March 1907 British Ford Catalogue, so it is not a Model T at all.
It does represent yet another great example of Ford PR department openly lying to the public, so it is interesting for that reason.
A few additional comments on the RAC HP.
From: http://www.vccansw.org/articles/vcca_article02.htm they have the formula for determining the British Royal Automobile Club (RAC) horsepower as: hp + (D squared x n) divided by 2.5. “D” is the diameter of the cylinder in inches and “n” is the number of cylinders. [note depending on if I put the information in as inches or metric I get a small difference – but it is always close.] In this case the Diameter of the cylinder bore for the N,R,S, SR and T are the same at 3 3/4 inches. So the RAC hp rating is the same for the two engines. In this case the 22.4 RAC hp is quoted on page 20 of “The English Model T Ford” book for the Model T engine. If I am understanding this correctly, the Model N,R,S, & SR would have the same 22.4 RAC since they have the same bore and same number of cylinders (4). One of the math folks can double check the math – but whatever it comes out to, the answer should be the same for the T as the N,R,S,& SR.
Note the RAC hp was developed early on and for back then it gave you a way to compare the engines – not a great way, but a way. Clearly not as good as a dynamotor test as the RAC method would give a Model T engine the same 22.4 RAC HP rating if it had the stock flat head or a hopped up overhead valve set up. But it became important when the Motor Vehicle tax introduced in the 1909-1910 Finance Act tied the amount of tax an owner paid based on the RAC hp, with different tax brackets. Initially the Model T at 22.4 fell in the over 16 and under 26 hp tax bracket (Again ref page 20 of “The English Model T Ford”).
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When possible would you add the month and date to the sources you post? That may not be practical in some cases, but when it is, it gives additional details to the story. And yes, I will need to go back through the information you have previously sent.
Sorry to bother you with asking for details, but I am really trying to get this one straight or at least as straight as I can. I am hoping to build a time line of events etc. You mentioned above "The illustration of the 1907 Ford Double Phaeton was lifted from the March 1907 British Ford Catalogue, so it is not a Model T at all." I would like to find out more about the Mar 1907 British Ford Catalogue that you are referencing. We shared a total side view shown again below – but it was from an early 1908 British Ford Catalog and since it contains an Oct 1907 testimony letter it would not be the Mar 1907 British catalogue you are referring to or if it is, then the date would be later than Mar – more likely Nov-Dec 1907. I would like to document the earliest use of the illustrations as I believe when they were used could be helpful to our figuring out what was going on.
Note, we are all human and it is easy to get things swapped around etc. When I took a safety investigation course with the military years ago, they talked about interviewing witnesses. They said witnesses would often transpose the numbers they thought they saw on a license plate. They usually got the numbers correct, but not as often in the correct order. I’m trying to make sure I have the order as correct a reasonably possible.
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There are things I know, things I don't know, and things I think I know (however, don't). The tough thing is sorting through all of the above and placing them in the correct category.
During the summer of 1907 James Couzens (Ford equivalent of a CFO) and Mr. Lockwood (Ford foreign trade representative) traveled to most of the major cities of Europe. Upon his return, Mr. Couzens reported business prospects for Ford looked good (my words) and also said he had orders for 5,000 cars. Some reports say the orders are for the new taxi cab (landaulet/town car), some for the new lightweight touring (both are presumed to be the new model Ford is planning).
By late 1907, Ford is releasing drawing/ad prints to dealers showing the car pictured above, with right hand steering, cowl (on the touring and runabout, not the town car), shift lever similar to models B, K, N, R and S). Model S Roadsters are not yet on the market (that I'm aware of), so the cowl is a new development, only seen on the Ford Model K roadster to this point.
By this time (October/November/December 1907) Ford Motor Company is also calling the new car "Model T" in some promotional material, including the Denver Ford Branch advertisement (not sure what's "ludicrous" about that, it's an advertisement prepared and paid for by Ford Motor Company).
I suspect (but have no correspondence or other proof) that ads placed by both English and German Ford agents were derived from Ford Motor Company, not the other way around. The implication Ford Motor Company would somehow obtain both German and British ad work (that coincidentally is identical) and adopt it as their (Ford Motor Company) artwork seems a little far fetched, but again, that's my opinion.
Meanwhile, Perry and Thornton, Ford's London representatives were offering an extended Ford phaeton body placed on an extended NRS chassis (93 in. wheelbase). Fortunately, one of these cars still exists at the Museum of Science in England. Below are photos, although I'm not sure where they are from (captured several years ago from another thread). As one is able to see, this is a decidedly earlier design and on a shorter wheelbase than the Model T (prototype) shown in Ford Motor Company drawings. Again, what I don't know is, did Perry and Thornton or other English and/or European Ford agents offer different phaeton or other aftermarket bodies?
One thing I am sure of, Ford did call the future light touring "Model T" as early as October 1907 in some advertising and news accounts.
Advertisement placed by Ford Motor Company in the New York "Sun" newspaper, November 3rd, 1907. The touring is referred to as "Model T touring car, four cylinder 20 hp. The second car is referred to as "Model W, four cylinder 20 hp":
Another thing I'm fairly sure of (another category of "things I know") Ford did not label the future Model T or T prototype "Super S." However, if they did, I would welcome any period literature, documentation or photographs demonstrating such.
Hap, I attach a date and publication to all the materials I post, unless, as with the NRS phaeton photos above, they were captured from other posts/locations where the originating information is not included. Thank you for your research and help as we attempt to learn more about early Ford history,
I think Royce would be the first to agree that "Super S" is simply his way of labeling an S with removable head for the purposes of clarity in this discussion. It's just a phrase he has coined for this hypothetical automobile.
Not sure if any of your possible theories covers this yet, but I would suggest the possibility that Ford's use of the name "Model T" meant different things at different times. In other words, he knew the next model would definitely be known as "T", but had not immediately decided what exactly a Model T would be. Hence an evolutionary process took place and by the time the Model T we all recognize had come to be, there were several previous incarnations, also called "T", that had been abandoned.
I have no idea what Royce is suggesting other than an insistence that these cars were not "Model T". I agree with your comment to Hap, there was an evolution as Ford prepared to bring out the new model. Ford said on many occasions since mid 1906 that they intended to bring out a light touring car. Considering the number of sightings (New York auto show, Detroit Auto show, etc.) and national advertising conducted by Ford, I suspect the intention was to bring out the T long before it appeared. I also suspect problems/improvements such as the magneto delayed production. I doubt Ford would have raised expectations of the public, and potentially ham strung dealers by advertising a new car for early spring when they intended to bring the car (T) out in late 1908 (but that is only my opinion).
Regardless, an interesting time in Ford history. I also suspect we will continue to find new information as more and more material is uncovered.
From the two page article concerning the new car (link provided above, and again below), a Ford drawing of the "rumble" runabout:
Ford records for October 1907 show one "Rumble Seat" sold that month. It is not included with the Model S nor Model K entries, and may have appeared like this October 1907 published drawing (or not).
Sure looks like full elliptical springs holding u the rear end. Not a T but maybe beyond NRS?
Maybe that one's an S-and-a-half.
Mike, does that mean it's "half S ed"?
Thomas, my thinking is this was close to the car Ford intended to have ready by February 08. If not, Ford was leading dealers and the public on with an expensive ad campaign, and I'm not sure what the purpose of that would be. I've found ads for these cars in several national newspapers and most listed Ford Motor Company or FMC branches, not local dealers:
Rockford IL Daily Gazette
Chicago "Inter Ocean"
A national magazine, "The Power Wagon" (not a Dodge )
Thomas, if your still reading this thread, are you planning a trip to Benson Library soon?
Nah, not half S'd...S already came and went so it couldn't be could it?
Must have been after they thought "let's think let the S car go. It behaved like a snail anyway!" (I know...bad...but what the heck).
That was bad......
Might go soon. Anything particular to look up?
I think it would be interesting to see the dates on the three pedal - two lever drawings if anyone knows how to locate them at Benson Ford. That might help establish a time line of the various developments and changes between the NRS and the T that finally shipped. Really curious about those few non-NRS that shipped before October 1, 1908 that Rob mentions in the ledgers. There must have been drawings, but how were they designated?
The ledger copies I posted were reference Trent ab. We're wrong (the numbers 813,815,816 and one other). However, there were three cars (T) sold prior to Oct 1908, and one was reported (the rumble seat) in the Oct 1907 sales (Ford Gain/Loss report). Looking at early 09 drawings would be interesting as well.
I would like a few Model K and N drawings, but it would be good to have someone look at them before I decide which ones to buy at $30 per drawing. If you go, and have a little time, I would explain what I'm looking for in case you spot it.
Typos above (spell correct), the first sentence should say
"The ledger copies I posted above reference Trent B. were wrong......"
Indeed, Rob, say anything you want about the "Super S" because that appellation describes it much more accurately than any moniker that you have provided. The car has no relationship to a Model T, other than being a Ford product with four cylinders.
The fact that Ford distributors used an incorrect description in newspaper advertisements doesn't change what the cars were. No doubt the Ford dealers were trying to drum up showroom traffic to move all the unsold Model K's and bolster flagging sales of the NRS series.
From Neal Tuckett's personal collection, Perry Thornton and Schreiber Catalogue 1908 correctly DOES NOT call the car a Model T, and properly identifies the horsepower as 15 - 18 (sorry I goofed the date above). This model apparently was only sold in the UK:
"Flagging sales of Model NRS"? If you meant "lagging" sales, Ford Motor Company had it's best year ever in 1908, so I'm curious where you came up with that theory.
You call it a "Super Model S". Ford Motor Company called it a "Model T". Much as I respect your opinion, I'm going with Ford Motor Company on this one.
Have a good day.
Tom"ay"to, tom"ah"to, pot"ay"to, pot"ah"to, let's call the whole thing off.
Well there was a Super A,Super C,Super H,Super M,Super W-6,and Super W-9.Bud in Wheeler.