The Un-restored 1924 Martin Parry Truck that I bought this summer had two Firestone "Oldfield" tires still with the truck. One is mounted on the spare tire carrier and the other was actually holding air and was driven on for a mile or two (although it's a complete bologna skin!) In any event, in order so that I can drive the truck, the tires clearly needed to be replaced. So this evening, I dismounted the one that was still mounted on the rear and the attached pictures show what I have. From the little information I found, the "Oldfield" tires are indeed from the 20's but I don't know how reliable the info I found was. But even more curious is the inner tube. It has a metal valve stem and the tube is tan color and not black. It says "DUNLOP" and Made in the USA. It's also interesting that the texture and consistency of the inner tube is spongy and very soft. Best of all, it still holds air!
Great find! Most important of all, don't deflate the tube. Instead, find a suitable pressurized container to capture the factory original, 1920s air. Then send it to a purist like me so I can make my car correct beyond criticism !
Neat to see some thing like this.
I once had a red inner tube.
I assume Oldfield was an endorsement from Barney Oldfield?
That is a Firestone Oldfield.I had some Oldfields ,made right here in INDY I believe. Nice wall hanger/converstion pieces.
Great find! My '27 T came with a new set of Firestones that had not ever been run. The spare is an ACME that appears to be period correct and was apparently sold by Cities Service gasoline stations. After discovering a bent rim, I dismounted one of the new tires and found that it had been mounted without flaps. I installed new flaps from Lang's in all five tires (including the ACME). The spare, old as it is - is in good enough shape to get me home at reduced speed. It was the only tire with a flap, but the flap was in terrible shape.
Not wanting to hijack this thread but I just finished mounting this exact same spare tire carrier on my 1917 Maxwell Light Delivery. Can anyone tell me anything about this carrier? Original Ford? Aftermarket?
David Baker had this one at Chickasha a couple of years ago.
I didn't notice any Firestone mark on this 999 version.
Casual research on the Google machine indicates that there were Firestone Oldfield tires and there were Oldfield Tire Co. "Barney Oldfield" or just plain "Oldfied" tires. Two different companies/two different brands.
I presume the Oldfied Tire Co./Barney Oldfield tires came later.
Keep the tire with the tube inside, slightly pressurized, in a dark cellar where the temperature doesn't vary too much and it'll last for many more years. It's daylight and heat that destroys rubber parts.
I still use a couple of similar pre war tubes in my primitive pickup while the tires are new after a flat tire in july (first patch on that tube )
Here's a couple of threads about old tires and tubes:
Roger... Thanks for the information. It's pretty neat to find these. The are typically not the type of item that gets saved, and I thought it was very rare to find it still on the truck and holding air! If the tire could talk, the story would be incredible for sure.
Steve / Erik.. That Oldfield 999 is a neat old tire. After I dismounted it, I thought for a moment of what it would take to find three more usable Oldfield tires. The one you can see on the spare tire carrier still has good tread but the one I dismounted is completely bald. I abandoned the thought as quickly as it crept in...
I have a spare tire mt like the one shown that came off a PU. Was made from a rear mt. This is only the second one I have seen.
The Oldfield logo is one of my favorites. Do be careful as mentioned about letting sunlight get to the tube. I have a red tube hanging from the rafters and it regularly leaves a "Hello" on the floor.
I do try to save such things as a piece of history. Sadly, some of these things are difficult to save, especially if you want to display them. I pulled a white gummy type inner-tube out of a really old tire a few years ago. When I took it out, it looked to be in nearly perfect condition. I set it aside, intending to package it for safekeeping. Went back to it only a couple days later and found it had nearly disintegrated into a puddle of whitish goo. I still have it. Inside a gallon freezer bag. And it doesn't look anything like an inner-tube. Nearly sixty years inside a tire, it probably could have still held air. Three days in a cool dark open air space, liquefied.
Do what you can.
Dan... Thanks for posting the clipping. Does it have a date?
Richard... at some point, it's going to drop to the floor. Just as long as it's the tube and not a black snake like happened to me once. ONly thing I want hanging in the rafters are car parts - not wildlife!
Wayne.. I have the tube lightly inflated as you see in the top pictures. It held air fine when it was in the car so I put a little air in it just to hold it's shape. Right now, I have it in the trunk of my 25 coupe just to keep it in the dark. We'll see how long it lasts but it sure is a nice artifact that at least I was able to document with photo's. With any luck, it'll hang together.
That Firestone adv is dated February 1923. Shows too that Firestone and perhaps many others were making the 'Oversize' tire that we only have today back in those days. The oversize are good for todays driving, bigger footprint, but look a tad large compared to what Ford put on the T's.