So, I inherited a '15 Roadster project last fall. My dad owned it for over ten years and he never finished it because the body tin was so rough that I didn't think I could fix it for him. I've vowed to finish the car in his memory. I've just purchased a '17 Roadster body and I want to convert it . Other than swapping out the cowl for one of the good '15 cowls that I have and installing the correct door latch, what else do I need to do to get it right?
Don't worry, there's not a chance of me selling it to an unsuspecting buyer. My son has already claimed it.
Windshield has rivets in lower section on a 15,for one.
Thanks Jack, I've got a couple of correct '15 windshields. I'm really looking for info about the actual body. Does the moulding where the body panels join at the back extend in one continuous piece along the turtle deck platform or is there a bead in the tin? My engine was assembled in March of '15. What kind of mag horn is correct? I have two different styles, neither has a brass bell.
Sedans and coupelets had magneto horns early in the year. There is some doubt about when they began showing up on open cars, but as late as late June, many tourings and runabouts still had a bulb horn. (Based upon recollection of past discussions and a good friend's late June touring with original bulb horn worn bolt holes in the original wood firewall although no horn)
I look forward to answers and photos to help me make my car as correct as I can also.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
The Brass bell horn, Brassco Brand, is attributed to a fairly short time period, around Aug-Nov of '15 (early '16 production. This info is from memory, so someone may find written documentation to counter it!! My unrestored Brassco has a partially painted bell, with the "horn" end in brass. The Bell is not smoothly curved, but has bends to form the curve (am I describing this clearly??). It would be a real pain to fix any dents in it! I'd post a pic, but it's in a box somewhere in the garage!!
Door latches are different. The '15 latch works up and down as the handle is moved. The '17 and later latches are rotated 90 degrees. The handle shape is also completely different.
Also the '15 catch on the body is made from bronze. They became cast iron some time in '16 model year.
Arm rests for '17 are metal capped at the front. 1915 arm rests are just wrapped and nailed fabric.
One thing you should definitely do while doing body work, is weld a piece in over where the coilbox would be that is half moon shaped. The black T's had to have that for the radiator support rod, and is a dead give away if you have the wrong body on a '15.
One last thing. Heinze also made a brass belled horn for '15s, in addition to Brideport Brass.
You might need the forged dash/firewall braces. The holes should be in the top of the frame rail all ready. You might want to weld shut the holes in the side of the rail fro the pressed steel ones.
some frames in that era have holes for both style of firewall mount.
My chassis is all '15. I just need to back date the body. I have the correct door latch and I've collected three decent '15 cowls over the years. The '17 body came with decent '15 turtle deck, but it think I'll use the NOS one that I inherited from my father.
What's the difference in the turtle deck platform between '15 and the later cars? Can somebody post good photos of the moulding where the buddy tub meets the turtle deck platform?
I have some of the same questions. I have some rear area turtle deck platform pieces that are simply flat U shaped sheet metal and two solid bead pieces fit down each side (on the top edge) and meet in the rear middle of the platform. They also seem to just meet flush to the bottom ends of the solid bead that holds each body side panel to the seat back panel. (hope that makes sense ).
I also have two sheet metal pieces that fit the rear platform that have the beading stamped into the top edge (no separate solid bead). I don't know when the change took place but I presume the sheet metal panel with the stamped in bead came later (1917-19?). I'm pretty sure the separate solid bead was used in 1915. I lot of speculation on my part. Hope somebody can chime in on this with more knowledge.
I also know that the left side body panel in 1915 should be in two pieces spot welded together at the rear of the dummy door. When the change to a one piece left side panel took place I have no idea. Again hope someone can shed light on this.
Good Luck on the 1915 project. I need to start mine too.
I'd just be happy to get my '15 back on the road again. This time I'm waiting for two wheels from Stutzman's. This car's been laid up longer than it's been used ever since I bought it.