This is the second in a part study of 26-27 Improved Model parts and their changes. It is an attempt to show the various changes made during 1926 and 27, (even pre production very early 26 models during 1925) and if possible find the "dates of changes" I hope to be as 1926 27 parts specific as possible. I have shown photos of the 2 different torque tubes I know of. The one with the five different diameters or "steps" is I believe for the 26 27 models. The other one I show is a straight taper design used in earlier years (and maybe 1926-27??). My question is "when was the "stepped" design issued. Do all Improved 26-27 use the step design, or could the earlier straight taper have been used in early 1926 or till ???? These are the only 2 designs I am aware of, but maybe someone knows of others. Any comments as to whether I'm right or I'm wrong are appreciated.
Early straight taper on top, later 5 step design on bottom, in each photo.
Unfortunately, that 'stepped' torque tube isn't exclusive to the Improved Car. Although most all large drum rear ends have it, earlier small drum axles in the 1920's had this design.
But most likely the stepped were used for the Improved Car, certainly is correct for those years.
I "know" nothing, except for what I have seen.
I have seen too many tapered tubes on improved era rear ends and cars to believe that they did not make a lot of Ts that way.
I have seen enough stepped tubes on improved era rear ends and cars to believe that a lot of T were made using the stepped tubes during the improved car era.
I have seen stepped tubes on earlier cars. Most of them restored or altered enough to not accept them as solid evidence of anything.
I have heard and read (like Dan T says) that they were used earlier, and I believe it is possible. But I just do not know. I hope that your quest finds the answer. So we all can know.
Thank you for working to sort out this area of change. I wish you great success! And that your name will be listed along with Bruce and Hap among with many others for great expertise!
So I will toss out my invitation to anyone that "knows" anything, has early photos that help show anything, to please contribute.
Again, Thank you.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
My dad has a 26 tudor with a 2 piece driveshaft and cast end radius rods, small drum of course. Don't know if it came that way, I have my doubts,
I asked Bruce one time if he had ever seen anything at the Henry Ford about them.He said no. The only reference I have seen in print was in Les Henry's book and it said the stepped housing was introduced about 1920 and used in conjunction with the tapered ones through out production.
The fossil evidence of existing cars is so hard to feel comfortable with. If enough are found to be a certain way it may sway a person to believe it is so. ... One of the reasons of this study is to bring all the discussions to one place (under a common name) and maybe find some new things about the Improved models. I am writing it all down, then change as needed, erase or mark thru things that become unclear. But when all is done and the smoke clears, maybe we can have a little better picture of the Improved models .. As I dig and look for things I find stuff I was not aware of (I am no expert by no means) I had always believed the stepped tubes were improved models. It appears now, "maybe not" and so "the discussion continues" ..... Thanks for the input ...
I have seen this posted on here many times, and it makes sense. It is very hard to nail down any time frame for such and such part because of the branch assembly plants. No doubt, earlier parts were used up before the later parts, probably even at the factory. Then there is the problem of repairs that were made back in the day with many early/late parts. I applaud Donnie for taking on these studies. Any information is a plus, there is already some useful info being posted. JMHO Dave
One other problem with the two different style of tubes may be, two different manufactures. Henry may have contracted out to someone that could make the "steps" easier than the straight taper so that was how they did it. I still feel the stepped tubes are 26-27 (model year) and the straight taper may have overlapped into early 26 (model year). Then the earlier (25 and before) cars with the "step tubes", are repairs or replacements. I have no way to prove that, and no answer for the 1920 and later dating in the Les Henry book. So it is just my "opinion" with very little worth.
I do not want to miss the 26-27 TT trucks in the "torque tube study" Is there any differences that need to be discussed by you TT guys ... ??
I am a neophyte to the Model T world, and my focus is entirely on TT's. Currently have a 26 to be shipped to me and a 25. I will report in when I get them both home.
I caution against a hard changover time or design kind of thinking. My Mopar experience has proven a number of times that vendor/supply sources often produced different designs on the same basic mousetrap, but restorers get their minds locked into a "one or the other" paradigm and get to arguing amongst themselves over this or that being hard evidence, proving this was just so, or that came before this, &c., when the reality was the company did not care, so long as it looked close and got the job done and oft-times both types were made and used at the same time. Latter day repairs also muddy the water.
Interesting to note this drive line difference though. I am picking up all sorts of detail "tidbits" from this forum.
Burger, the focus of this study, is to bring new things to light, find the "order of change" to the parts, find new "date of change dates" where possible, and just show how many changes there were to the Improved models. I do think, if a new "date of change" date is found, it will show aprox when a part came in to existence. In that case it would be good evidence a particular part probably was not available before that date. But by getting all the info we can into one place and format it may help give a better understanding of the Improved models .... and at least say "early, mid, or late". This driveline difference, is just one of the many, many, many, differences ....
Last week I posted a message about repairing a broken torque tube on my 26 T or finding a replacement so this discussion is of particular interest to me. The torque tube in my 26 coupe is a straight taper tube. I suspect it may have been replaced at some time because one of the lower ball cap bolts is shorter than the other and they were not safety wired and there were no cotter pins on the nuts of the upper bolts. I have found a replacement tube which is a stepped tube that I am told came from a 24. Could the tapered tube be what came on the car and at some point been removed for repair and re-installed? Or could the tapered tube be the replacement for a stepped tube that was removed because of a needed repair? Which is correct? From what I have read here it could be either. It really doesn't matter to me one way or the other. Mine isn't a show car. In fact it looks like it was just pulled out of a barn. I just want to get the car repaired and back on the road. After all, what's the fun of having a T if you can't drive it.
Ford bought parts from outside suppliers when their own capacity wasn't enough and used experimental alternative production methods from time to time, so I think the stepped tubes were used on only some of the production over some years & they might be from an outside supplier?
The drive shaft/pinion housing bolts on 1920's T's can have two wrench sizes - with the larger one it's hard to get the wrench in place. Has anybody noticed when the different sizes were used?
Robert, There is no concensus yet. I still "personally" believe that the "stepped" tubes will be mostly found on 26-27 models. But there are enough around on earlier cars to not rule them out on the earlier cars yet. On a 26 T I would venture to say that either style could be correct.