OK, so (cock arm.. throw rock at hornets nest) those of us that own or are interested in the 13 / 14 fords are aware that the retaining nuts that hold the windshields in place came brass-plated. The primary question to answer in this thread is:
Did Henry ever paint over the brass plating?
My 1913 is an all original car that has never been "restored" except that it did have an amateur paint job on the body and fenders. Many parts of the car were left with the original finish. For instance, the under side of the hood still has the original paint as does the hood former, steering column and the Vanguard Windshield. The entire running gear has never been restored and is basically untouched original.
Now I am aware that nothing is for certain. I repeat; I am aware that nothing is for certain... and anything could have been done to this thing in the last 101 years. But I've owned a lot of vintage cars in my time and I know the look of original paint when I see it. And these parts to me appear to have the old original paint on them. You can plainly see the brass plating on the back of the nut and in the threads. But the million dollar question is: Is the Paint original Ford paint applied at the factory?
Of course, there is no way of knowing for sure. However, I'd like to hear from people who have original cars out there and know if their cars have what appears to be original, Ford-applied paint on the nuts or if the nuts are just bare brass plating.
I'm just not satisfied accepting a single theory based on a factory photo when what I have before me seems undisturbed. Having said that, if there is no proof to support my finding, then I always have the option of dunking them in acetone! I look forward to the feedback
Ok, you may now hurl your rocks, shards of glass, and various insults..
Every factory photo shows them unpainted. They corrode quickly and are hard to polish without removal.
Royce - These photo's are not proof that every car left the factory this way. Furthermore, even the photo's don't prove that the fasteners are un-painted. The first two photo's provide reasonable doubt. Reflections off gloss black paint vary widely depending on angle of incidence, filtering, and color of the background image viewed through the reflection. A perfect example is the hood in the top two photo's. Clearly, the portions of the hood reflecting the light are "white" in color. Even more compelling are the spherical head wheel hub bolts on the front wheels in the top two photo's. We all know they were painted black, but they are very reflective and appear to be white, or unpainted... just like the windshield hardware screws and nuts.
Photo's from current owners who have original / un restored cars showing unpainted OR painted windshield hardware would be helpful.
I dug through my old photo's and I have the last photo posted showing the drivers area. When I blow that photo up, clearly the nuts are plated and not painted. However, this photo I am posting - supposedly of a factory photo - the screw heads on the outside appear to be painted.
Actually, there is a way to pretty much know for sure if you're willing to pay for it and that's with scientific paint analysis. If you have samples of parts that you are certain still have their original finish, they can be used to compare the parts in question by chemical analysis and other means. Most people don't care enough to bother. In this case, it would be very interesting to know because if you are correct, it sheds new light on the manufacturing process.
That photo is not a factory photo. Even so, the bolts appear to be unpainted, and are probably plated and corroded somewhat from the trip to wherever the photo was taken.
Interesting. There are three wire-on paper tags attached -- one on the left-rear wheel and two on the left side top sockets.
Cars with tag 5005M - first one has no fender visors, and second one has them... what's the deal?
Most 1914 Model Ts did not have billed fenders. Late in the 1914 model year the billed 1915 style fenders were used.
By the way, I think Larry Smith has factory drawings for some of these fasteners (bolts, nuts, screws) that shows the metal finish.
The metal tabs that hold the windshield to the firewall were raven finish steel, never brass or brass plated.
The two cars with the 500M tags are different cars.
Look at the sidelights, they are different too.
Look at the pictures again and note that most of the hub bolts and frame rivets look like they are brass or plated as well. In the third picture down the front cross member rivets and the hub bolts look just like the windshield hinge bolts.