One of our club members is looking for replacement rubber plugs to go in the hole where the rod that supports the top when down fits. Any ideas?
Check furniture hardware and electronic/computer supply place for plastic hole plugs--something might fit.
Reproductions are readily available:
Thank you very much! I sent a note to the guy looking. I am normally one of the guys posting the reply to this kind of question but every once in a while....
The plugs are another "Larry Smith product", so they are just like the originals.
Yeah, and Jim Rodell supplied the original for me to make the new one from! I think Langs is the only one carrying them, but Snyder might have them.
You should get Langs to correct the description -
"When Tís were delivered from the factory they were not supplied with top bow saddles. These plugs were installed at the factory to cover the hole. An interesting item for cars on which you never plan to put the top down so you can remove the arms and saddles."
On my grandfather's farm in Saskatchewan there was a 1926 touring parked in a field for over 30 years. I dragged the car home to British Columbia and did an 80% restoration. There were no top irons and bows just the rubber plugs, at the time I thought no more of it and just figured it had no top? Some time later (about10 years) I got thinking that it must have had a top and most likely was all ratty and torn and the owner probably took it off in frustration and threw it off in his yard some where. After laying awake at night I got to thinking the irons were most likely still in his front yard. Assisted with four family members we spread out in the front yard and conducted a grid search in the knee high grass and in less than 10 minutes unearthed two rusty model T top irons. They were cleaned up and put back on the original car where they are today.
Out 26 touring was a California car. Original paint. It had the same plugs you speak of and the top was made to disconnect from the body rather than folded down at the back seat. The top probably taken off when ever it wasn't wanted rather than carried around. There are irons for the doors and snaps for the side curtains too. Top was probably replaced before I bought it in 62 but the seats were original.
Erik - what do you think is wrong with Lang's description?
"When Tís were delivered from the factory they were not supplied with top bow saddles."
The top saddles may not have been installed at the factory, but they were supplied with the cars.
Both the rubber plugs and the top saddles are designed to be easily installed and removed.
Until someone produces an original bill of sale showing that the customer had to pay extra for top saddles, 1921 through 1927 roadsters and tourings were equipped with top saddles and the rubber plugs. The top saddles were most likely stowed in the same location as the side curtains and the tool roll.
This is a discussion that has been beaten to death in the past.
Ok, a very minor change in the wording would make it correct for both "sides" then.. "..they were not supplied with the top bow saddles in place"
I would also think all open cars were supplied with the top bow saddles, likely under the rear seat or in the turtle deck - they would have been much rarer and harder to find if they were accessories.
As for copy from an original, best to follow print.
And the finish spec is shiny Black enamel over this rubber plug!
You mention that "this is a discussion that has been beaten to death in the past." What is the results of those past discussions?
Erik was complete in reference to the former posts about these parts, beating a dead horse!
The Rubber Plug (Part 7444X, Factory part # T-744)covers the hole in the body where the Top Rest Iron (Part 5190CX) that screws into the body, is located.
That iron rod then holds the Rest (prop) and Strap Assembly (Part 3876BX) to secure the folded down top.
As Erik posted, the open car bodies were supplied with that rubber plug, and then removed to install the top rest iron.
This famous photo shows the 15th million Ford getting that rod fastened on the assembly line.
That Ford left with the top ready to be folded if needed, as that Ford was on the road right off the factory line.
The other open cars shipped with the top iron and prop (saddle) and straps in the car with the tool kit and the side curtains too for the tops on open cars.
A lot of new photos show the rubber plug covering the top iron hole.
Keeping that rubber plug there filled a hole, and looked better, maybe many owners didn't lower the top often, and that is why original plugs remain today.
Here is an original plug in this well preserved runabout. That plug still showing its shiny black enamel paint finish!
The original plugs were made in two pieces. The visible part was black bakelite, and the inner part was soft rubber. Somehow they fused the two pieces together. We were not successful in doing this, so we wound up making the whole thing out of soft rubber. Sometimes it kills me to have to do something different. And yes, Langs description is not correct. They stopped supplying top saddles in 1921 when they introduced the new style body. They used that style top saddle iron and saddle up to the end.
Larry, I do not understand. You say Langs description is not correct. The next sentence you say they (Ford??) stopped supplying top saddles in 1921 when they introduced the new style body. So if they stopped supplying top saddles in 1921, then Lang's statement is correct at least for cars made after 1921. What am I missing?
I take his statement to mean, the parts (at least the rods) were included just not installed.
What Don is saying is Model T's were not supplied with top saddles. What he should have said is the 22-27 T's were not supplied with top saddles and irons.
Just to re-clarify, Model T's were supplied with the Top Rest Iron(Part 5190CX) and the Rest (saddle) and Strap Assembly ( Part 3876BX).
No T's in '22-'27 were shipped without, or delivered by the dealer without these parts. There could be no way for the owner to lower the top! Have never seen these parts added to a Model T dealer sales invoice either
Ref. : Service Bulletin Nov. 1922
"Raising and Lowering One-Man Top"
In order that the dealer may correctly instruct owners as to the proper method of raising and lowering the new top, we are giving the below detailed instructions regarding this procedure.
Note the last line...in order to strap the top to the rest, that Rest (saddle) and Strap Assembly had to be supplied!
Did that apply to the roadster pickup also?
Yep, along with the spare rim when ordered with demountable, since no spare carrier on the rear, where the tail gate drops, those factory parts, like the side curtains were tossed in the pickup bed.
And this carefree guy with a toot of a horn didn't even wrap up those top straps on the rest!
While this pretty farmer's daughter helping out with the chores doesn't have a top, but has those top rest and straps a'hanging
OK guys, here goes! Remember I am only the messenger!
The New York branch of the Ford Motor Company put out a dealer letter on December 2nd, 1925 with the subject DRESS UP YOUR FORD RUNABOUT WITH FORD TOP BOOTS AND GYPSY CURTAINS.
They placed an order form at the end of that letter which included 2 prop rests, pad and strap assembly for $1.20 and 2 prop rest irons for $0.40. However it is interesting to note that they did not include part numbers for these parts while the top boot and gypsy curtains both had part numbers listed.
Now my question to the forum members is why would the dealer letter add these items to the list if they were already shipped with every new Runabout?
Dan, I see some of your pictures show open improved cars with the rubber plug. Perhaps for shipping purposes they did not install the top rest hardware. However, did they ever have a check list to show what was to go with an open vehicle? My point is if the top rest hardware was included in the purchase of a new vehicle, but not installed, perhaps the factory had a check list to show the items that went with the new vehicle. If someone can produce such a list that includes top rest hardware for the improved open vehicles, then we all could be in agreement. However the New York Branch dealer letter may tell a different story.
Dan another thought, like Larry says, perhaps the parts were shipped with earlier production vehicles and thus the procedure to fold the top, which indicates the top rest hardware, may apply to those early cars that had the top rest hardware supplied. My question is in regards to the improved vehicles that Donnie Brown is researching.
Donnie see all the problems that come up when you purchase an improved base touring with rubber plugs! (just kidding!)
All I can say is read the above information. It is all there. I believe the part numbers for the top saddles and irons are in the body parts book. I have some late top saddles with Ford script, but never have found out when they were produced. Most have the dot combination.
Yes, Larry the part numbers are listed in the parts book. I have read your posts which indicate that later vehicles did not have the top down hardware included.
It is just that some members indicate that the parts were included in the trunk or under the seat. I am hoping that those that feel that way have some documentation to that effect. Just saying that Ford did not charge extra or put the items on the sales receipt does not necessarily mean the parts did indeed come with the vehicle.
Our 23 touring has been in the family since 1926. When I acquired it about 15 years ago, the plugs were in the holes and no saddles or irons were to be found. The top was missing also. I now have the irons and saddles, along with a new top, and have no plugs!