Some people do it to much. But hey, if you don't honk your own horn who will?
None of that has anything to do with today's job but I had to give the thread a horn related name because we are talking about a part of the horn no one has ever mentioned on this forum. It is the bulb / reed holder.
This particular part is not reproduced, or I should say, it is not reproduced properly. The part vendors offer a brass part that can be made to work. My '14 was equipped with one, it is all brass and appears to be well made, but it does not resemble the original part.
Here's the way the '14 horn tube looked this morning:
This arrangement works, but it is rather flimsy and has come apart twice where the little post is soldered to the horn tube. It takes just a minute to solder back together each time but why not have a good one instead of fixing reproduction parts that are flimsy?
I've been looking for an original for some time. Finally got one on eBay:
$22.99 and $3.00 Parcel Post. The reproduction part is $16.60 for the main piece:
Here is the original and the repop side by side:
The original has the reed inside. The repop horn setup places the reed at the horn.
First order of business id to unsolder the horn tube from the reproduction mount. Heat with the MAP gas torch and pull on the tube at the same time.
I temporarily installed the original bracket so I could mark the horn tube. It was way too long previously.
A cutoff wheel is better for this but mine is in Dallas so I used a fine tooth hack saw.
This left a rather ragged end so a trip to the belt sander was in order.
The end was ground slightly to give the solder a good "tooth" to cling to the metal. Flux paste was liberally applied to all parts and the solder itself before I tinned the tubing for about 1/4", then inserted it in the end fitting. I initially just heated the end fitting until it caused the solder on the tube to melt.
Then I clamped the tube so the fitting was lower, and applied a bit more solder allowing it to flow around to the bottom.
After that the fitting and tube were rotated 90 degrees and the heat applied again so the solder flowed around the other direction making a good air tight seal. (sorry no picture of that)
The first step in polishing is to sand away old corrosion and scratches. It went like this for about 20 minutes:
A sisal double stitched wheel was placed in a low speed drill with the trigger taped on. The drill went in the vise and then the entire assembly was buffed.
The steel bracket was bead blasted, hit with self etching primer, and then Krylon Rust Tough gloss black.
Here is the restored part after the paint dried and some assembly work:
Installed in the car, it looks great. I mounted it forward about 5 inches from where it should be in order to give my 6'5" body some knee room.
The original reed sounds great - basso profundo as they say.
Congrats on finding a better horn bracket! Nice resto job and step by step pics too! I've been looking forever for one for my '12, so far all I've been able to do is "jury rig" it with a brass bolt/nuts, and so far it's doing the job. Went through two of those re-pops in one year. No more of them!
Much appreciated. Originally these would have been brass plated. Maybe some day I will figure out a way to do brass plating at home.
Here is a picture taken of a brand new 1914 touring showing the original mounting location. The 1913 - 1916 USA bodies have a block of wood in this location that is placed there to provide a place to screw in the horn bulb / reed holder. Someone posted pictures of a 1914 body being re-wooded showing that detail. If I can find that picture I will add it later.
Photo property of the Ford Photographic Services archive. Posted here under my license:
Finally found the photo Leon posted of his 1915 body being re-wooded. This shows the wood block where the horn bulb / reed holder mounts:
Thanks for posting! Great photos and details.A great way to learn how easy things can be done at home!!
FWIW, I make the correct late 12-15 horn setups. As Royce points out, there is a double male threaded reed/holder assembly that places the reed inside the horn sleeve. The mounting bracket on the earlier (late '12-'14) style is somewhat similar to the early type shown in Royce's first photo, but the stem part is considerably shorter. The early style in the photo is used only on horn tubes mounted outside the car; it is too long to be used inside, where the driver's knee is continually knocking into it (and knocking it apart). The correct shorter style helped a lot with this issue but it still happens.
When the bulb horn was moved under the hood in '15, the bracket style was completely changed to a riveted strap style that is much stronger than the earlier fabricated types.
My reproduction looks 100% correct but I have improved it by using a "spine" that goes through all three pieces of the bracket assembly and is threaded and then soldered in place. It's stronger than the originals.
Also note, in the original photos that Royce posted, that the horn bulb that is mounted inside the car is at an angle that roughly parallels the angle of the steering column. This also helps to keep it out of the way of the driver's appendages.
The so called taxi horn made in India that you see so many on ebay often sell for $10 or less. The reed tube, with reed, often will work on a vintage horn.
R.V. - Thank you for advising us that you're reproducing the correct horn mounting bracket for the '12 to '15 T's.
Could you please post a couple of pictures of it, and the cost?
Thanks very much,
Thanks for the time you took in making pictures and the technical advice given.
I agree! Thank you Royce.