I am brand new to the hobby. I just got my first Model TT last month. The engine number dates it to February 1926 but does anyone know who made the cab? or where it was made? My understanding is that Ford only made steel cabs so I am assuming that Ford made this truck as a rolling chassis and then the cab was made by a cab company(?). It all wood except the side panels. There is only one door on the 'passenger side'. Also, I find it odd that the firewall does not come all the way down to completely seal off the engine from the cab. Is that normal?
Almost impossible to say. If you look through enough books, you might find a major aftermarket manufacturer that made a cab that looks similar, but that doesn't mean much without a tag or plate of some kind. There were tons of small suppliers in little towns all over. The wooden cab on my truck has a tag identifying the manufacturer as the Bryon Cabinet Co. meaning that they made truck cabs and probably also furniture or kitchen cabinets or whatever else you needed made. They may have even copied the design of a big company that advertised in catalogs, because why not? That being said, its a nice looking cab with some interesting details. I think it's funny that the rear window shows the same modification as on mine. It looks like the window started out much larger, but kept getting smaller as the owner worried about loads shifting forward
Your assumption is almost undoubtedly correct. Your truck was almost certainly delivered as a running chassis then fitted with a cab and bed by others, not Ford.
In spite of the '26/'27 engine your truck is earlier. The wood fire wall dates it to 1923 or earlier. The short running boards are also an indication of an earlier truck. And yes, the fact that the engine is exposed in the cab is common.
Having said all that, it's anybody's guess as to who manufactured that cab. I think I'd examine it carefully for a name plate or lettering, or something stamped into the wood. Assuming the truck is not too far from where it started life (which may be a flawed assumption), you might also research what companies were around at the time that could have made it.
My big attraction to Model T's and much of their following, is a deep appreciation for their rudimentary, organic design and place in history. No Ferrari collector would ever dream of leaving one in as-found, barn fresh patina. But many T owners relish in the dust, rust, and weathered wood. I know I do !
Cabs like yours are quite common out in wheat country, as they were fitted to crawler tractors in an attempt to save the driver from the horrendous clouds of dust turned up as they worked the fields. I have no clue who made them, but there clearly was a large market and many a cabinet-type shop stepped up to make some sales.
Great truck ! I hope you drive the hell out of it as is !
There may have originally been a piece of tin screwed to the top floor board to somewhat seal off the opening to the engine. Early cars were done that way. Gets pretty hot inside without something blocking that air.
The firewall (called the "dash" by Ford) was part of the chassis, not the body. It would have come with a "dash shield", which was a piece of steel which closed the gap between the dash and the floorboards. John Regan (www.funprojects.com) makes correct reproductions of the dash shields. This piece attaches to the dash, not the floorboards.
As has been said above, since your truck has a wooden dash, it would be '23 or earlier. There were many, many body makers supplying wooden truck bodies for the aftermarket trade at that time, since Ford did not yet make truck or pickup bodies.
An absolutely outstanding specimen....
Burger in Spokane, just a thought about patina and a Ferrari, I own a barn fresh 1912 touring and a barn fresh Ferrari.
I would never consider restoration of either. The beater Ferrari is as it left the factory mostly original paint all original upholstery and original convertible top. It has dings and scratches in the finish, worn upholstery,cracked windshield, and just plain dirty under the hood. I've owned it for almost 10 years and remember washing it once several years ago.
I love the comments I get when I drive it, I find it more appreciated than my much newer Ferrari which is a perfect specimen.
I in turn love the comments I get when driving my 1912 touring as well. When asked if I intend to restore my '12, I respond, "I just finished the restoration", how did I do?
A recent news story involved two 12-year-old girls stabbing a classmate many times in an attempt to kill her as a way to "please" a fictitious online video game character. Being in the security/law enforcement field, I am all too aware of stuff like this happening all the time.
While this might seem entirely OFF TOPIC, I see my Model T "mission" to be out there in the world with this puzzling mess of a truck, poisoning the minds of the young, on the off chance that someone, somewhere might take the spark that leads them down a different path than turning their brain to mush in front of a video screen.
Kids in my own neighborhood often come around, asking questions and most comment that when they get old enough, they'll have a cool old car too.
It's an evil plan for world domination. (insert sinister laugh here)
BCG ~ You're a sick man, and your Model T mental state has leaked over into your (heaven forbid!) Ferrari side. I own a rather exotic 1958 DeSoto Fireflite convertible that I am restoring (again) to look like a decent 5-year-old used car. I am sick of trailer queens and the silly people that go with them. The Model T will be an exercise in anti-restoration for me, with the ultimate goal being the appearance of a decently maintained old farm truck.
Thanks for the information so far. I have 2 questions:
First, did Ford have to install the dash in ALL vehicles (even the TT's rolling chassis) because the steering column attached to the dash?
Second, there is no frame number. I assumed the frame and engine were both '26 but if the frame could be earlier, is there some part or feature that could tell me the year of the frame? There must be some way to date the frame.
The previous owner of this truck also posted here a few times. If my memory is right, someone pinpointed the body manufacturer/style with a brochure.
Jason - The TT chassis came from Ford with the frame and running gear, steering, firewall (dash), radiator and its shell, hood, front fenders, and short running boards, all painted black.
The windshield and its supporting framework, seat, floorboards, cab, and bed all were parts of the aftermarket (or homemade) body.
p.s. --The chassis also included the headlights and one tail light. If the chassis had a starter and generator, the tail light was an electric one. If the chassis did not have the electrical equipment, it came with an oil lamp.
As stated above, lots of places made bodies to fit the TT.
I have a TT truck that came from one of my neighbors here in a rural area. The body was made by a local welding shop. It is wood. The older owner of the shop did some wood work on the side beside the basic welding.
The old welding shop was a sight to see with all the overhead shafts and pullies. Now it is just a memory and I did not take any pictures.
1. Yes, there was a firewall (dash) on all cars and trucks, even those delivered as a running chassis. The firewall was necessary in that it carries the coil box, the wiring terminal, the steering column, and it held up the rear of the hood.
2. TT frames are pretty hard to date. Take a look at the rear cross member. If it is about 33" long with one hole on each side it's an earlier chassis. If it's about 35" (maybe 36") long with two holes on each side then it's a later chassis. I'm not sure when this change was made, but I'd guess around 1923. Also, as I said above, your truck has the short running boards, indicating that it's an earlier chassis. Your running boards are 15" long. Later trucks had running boards that are 18" long (I think)) and a boot scraper on the rear edge.
Gary, do you remember roughly when the previous owner posted about this truck on the forum? Do you remember his name by chance?
mind did not have doors.
Jason, when you mentioned having the truck for one month, your TT body was identical to one that was posted possibly 6 to 8 weeks ago. I don't remember the posters name and he only posted possibly a dozen times requesting info about this cab. The other reason it rings a bell is in one of his posts he mentioned purchasing it for resale purposes. Sorry I'm not more of a help but possibly the other TT owners here recall more info
I believe the short running boards came on C cabs through 1925. Closed cabs took the longer boot scraper board. I don't know about bare chassis.
Look also where the rear pan ears mount to the frame. Earlier frames had a hole in the side of the frame where a bolt and wood block went between the inside of the frame channel and the rear mount ear.
Another clue in the chassis date is the rear end clam shells. Very early clam shells had a bead where the axle tube entered it. This bead was discontinued early on, in 1919 I think. Your truck does not appear to have these beads. So, assuming it's the original rear end, this narrows down the possible years of production a little more, say 1919 to 1923.
One more clue: Your dash seems to have (hard to tell in the photo) two slots to the right of where the coil box goes. This would indicate that the truck was originally equipped with a starter. (The slots were for the carb mixture rod and the choke rod. Non-starter cars and trucks didn't have the choke rod slot because there would never be a need to choke it from the inside.) This would be another indication of 1919 or later.
It may not be possible to dial it in any closer than that.
Henry, do you have a recommendation of books for model TTs? I have had some book recommendations but they were mainly for model T cars. I would like to find a book on the trucks if one exists.
Also, for the rear end, do these pictures show what your talking about?
Also, this truck does have an electric starter
Well, the rear end clam shells tell us that the rear end is a very early one, '18 or '19. This is evidenced by the beads at the axle tube entrance openings.
In contradiction, the plug at the top of the rear cover was not added until later, I'm not sure what year, but I seem to think around 1924.
The rear chassis cross member looks like a later one, but it's hard to tell. Measure it and see. If it's 33" it's an early one, longer and it's a later one.
The starter on the later engine, that is almost undoubtedly not the original engine, probably does not really provide us with more clues.
Buy TT 1, available from the vendors. It's the TT parts book. Also, I'll send you a rear end drawing that will be helpful. The engine and transmission are no different than a regular T.
Lot's of contradictory facts. It's the fun part!!