I have a 1914 Touring car and the attachment between the horn bulb and the door broke. I considered silver soldering it back together, but as I starting looking into things, I think the hose I have is wrong. The hose I have is painted black and the one Langs sells for a '1 is brass.
On top of that there is something wrong with the way the reed fits into either the bulb or the bracket. The reed has a smaller male thread on it than the bulb, but neither the bulb or the bracket have a female thread so it moves around. Some honks are better than others depending upon where the reed is floating in the assembly.
Rather than deal with all this, I figured I would just get a new assembly from Langs. They have 3 variants.
The Nonpareil Bulb:
The Rubes bulb:
I think the only difference in the three kits is the Bulb, but I will call Langs tomorrow and find out.
I figured the bulb should match the horn so I looked at the horn to find a marking. I could not find it marked Rubes or Nonpareil. I took it off so I could look all around and polish the rim and still could not find a marking? Were there non marked 1914 horns? I know it is upside down
Joe, I have an all original 1914 Touring and by all original, I mean it's really never been restored. The body has never been off the chassis but has been repainted, etc.
Anyway, my horn and set up is a Rubes. Hope that helps.
Original 1914 horns were made by Rubes, Standard Thermometer, Nonpariel, and perhaps others. Those three are the most common. All are visually identical with all brass construction. All were painted black with a brass polished rim when new.
The reproduction horn kits are not made right, unless you get the reed holder from an original car or from RV Anderson who makes an excellent reproduction.
Originally the reed was mounted in the bracket at the bulb end of the horn tube in 1913 - 1915 horns. Over the years many have been converted to have the reed at the horn like the 1909 - 1912 Model T, because that was the only reproduction part available. Ford moved the reed next to the bulb in 1913 because it works better.
Click here to see photos and info on how to do it properly:
Here are markings on original horns:
The '13 horns have a round mounting bracket, the '14s have an oval mounting bracket, and the '15s have scalloped mounting bracket. Whey they changed them every year puzzles me, but they did.
My horn does not have a manufacturer marking I can find...
The reed I have looks like the original type Royce shows in his link. The bracket is more like the repo than the original in that link, but is not the same as the repo he shows.
The reed I have is not really compatible with the bulb or bracket I have. It all goes together, but not right...
Pics of my horn. Is that the "scalloped" bracket? Is it therefore a '15?
Your horn is actually a 1915 version.
Royce, my reed is in the brass piece that the bulb pushes on to. If I'm reading your post correctly, that's correct for my 1914? I was under the impression the reed went in the brass piece just be fore the horn itself and thought mine was wrong
The reed goes in the part that mounts the bulb. Your horn since it is for a 1915, also had no provision for mounting the reed at the horn.
RV Anderson sells the bracket that you need.
This is a picture of a complete 1915 horn assembly. The yellow arrow is where the reed lives. 1914 assembly is similar except for the horn bracket at the firewall being oval, and there was no elbow in 1914.
Thanks for all the help. My horn does not have the elbow, so maybe it is a late 14, or more likely someone just took the elbow off to make a '15 look like a 14...
Either way, I think I am going to look for a complete and correct '14 horn setup. I contacted RV via PM about the bracket as well.
Ok, then mine is correct. Thanks, Royce.
Royce -- Your horn is upside-down.
Joe.. What is the month and year your 14 was built? I posted on your classified ad that your horn may be correct if your car is a very late 14 model. THere was some overlap into the 15 year and it seems out of the ordinary for Ford to stock two different horns after the overlap began when the scalloped based was required for the 15 model cars.
Is this better:
I noticed on the Rip Van Winkle, that the floormat was still notched out for the bulb horn!
I have several 13-15 bulb horns and I always wondered about the change in mounting brackets for the 14. It's my understanding of which I have examples the 13 bracket is round and brass the early 14 is oval and made of brass mid 14 were oval and made of steel and late 14 was the scalloped type mount steel & Very Early 15 had the scalloped mount continued with a brass elbow then a month or so later a steel elbow. Wonder why all the changes? Joe sent you a pm if you like the proposition let me know.
John -- Will you please post a picture showing the round base on a '13 horn comparing it with the oval base?
I am far from an expert, but I think this is a round mount. It is the horn Scott linked to from eBay. It looked ovular in some of the images, but this one straight from the back looks pretty round to me.
I think this one is an oval mount.
There is also this one out there, but it has several small dings and dents - not what I am looking for...
Another Forum member emailed me a pic of a horn with the round base, so now I know that they do exist.
I have seen lots of horns with the oval-shaped bases and lots of the diamond-shaped ones for '15. But I've never seen a round one. This leads me to believe that the round ones weren't used for very long before the change to the oval ones. As we all know, Ford's changes didn't necessarily coincide with model year changeovers.
If anyone has dating info to share about an original 13 with the round- or oval-based horns, that might shed some light on the subject.
So Joe, I think your car should have the oval-base horn unless, as James Lyons said, it is from late calendar year 1914, after the (August) changeover to the '15 model year. Those early '15 model year cars were still made in the the '14 style, due to production problems making the '15 cowl.
You could use either the oval or diamond base horn in that case, and either would work just fine. Neither would use the '15-style elbow, since the horn is mounted outside the hood. So maybe you don't need to look for a different horn after all.
My car is not a particularly late build. It was June of '14. From what I have read, I am pretty sure that means a round base would be appropriate.
It all started because the stupid repo bulb mount broke and I wanted to change to the correct style mount. Than I had to pick between a Rubes and Nonpareil bulb. I figured if I was going to buy a new bulb it should match the horn and since I don't have the '14 horn yet that is in limbo.
I am not familiar with T horn prices. Is the one on eBay for $350 priced fair for its condition? (It looks dent and ding free) Between that, a new bulb, bracket and hose, and shipping for everything I would be into it for about $600 for the complete setup which seems steep...
Not the expert here, but would not be surprised if Rubes, Nonperiel, Standard, and perhaps others, built this style horn before Ford adopted it. I have seen this style horn on other restored makes that preceded 1913, but fully agree this doesn't mean they are OEM original to those cars. I also question whether all of these manufacturers would have had the exact same base configuration. Has someone here got reliably original late 12 with the single twist horn? One would think this same horn would have been used on the 13's?
I am extremely far from an expert, but I suspect the changes were simple cost optimization / elimination of unneeded material. The round mount uses the most steel, and I bet someone realized they could save metal without loosing function by shortening the part that does not have fasteners and making it oval. The scallops look like further material optimization removing the material that was inactive between the fasteners.
I have nothing to base this on other than inspection though...
The '15's diamond-scallop mounting base was developed to allow the base to clear the steering column bolt and nut once the horn was moved under the hood. The horn with this new base could be used to directly replace either the round or oval base horns, and it was so noted on the drawing. This fact accounts for so many horns with this type base surviving today.