There seems to be a view that Henry Ford produced all his components for the Model T. Well, did he? Or did he out-source? If he did, what parts were manufactured and what parts were from suppliers? Can a list of suppliers be created? 10 points for name of supplier and component.
Early bodies. Wilson, Beaudette plus others
The short obvious answer is no. I haven't studied the subject and made a list, but I can think of a few things. A lot of Ford's early parts were made by Dodge Brothers, before they started making their own cars, and have the DB mark on them. Front axles and differential parts come to mind. Bodies, as Gary says. Speedometers, until Jones, Warner, A.C., Stewart, and other makers couldn't turn them out fast enough. Wheels from Hayes, Prudden, Kelsey, Firestone, and others. KW and Heinze coils and ignition parts. Black era ignition switches. That's why parts from one switch may not interchange with another. Champion spark plugs.
In the early days Ford outsourced everything. The company simply "assembled" automobiles. Many different manufacturers supplied the "same" part. Like Gary cited, bodies. From 1909-1915 there were a half dozen different body manufacturers. I can guar-an-tee you there were all a little bit different.
Early radiators were made by Brisco, Buffalo, McCord, Detroit, and Ford. Early gas lamps were made by E&J, Brown, Atwater Castle, Victor, and Corcoran. All a little bit different.
It wasn't until near the end of the Model T production that Ford produced the vast majority of components. A barge of raw ore would off load at one end of the River Rouge plant and cars would come out of the other end. Even at the end, Ford was buying parts from Kingston, Holley, KW...
Can a list be created? I suppose so. It would take a lot of virtual ink...
Do you have a car you on working on, George?
Also carburetors were outsourced. Ford built some NH style carbs but most were bought from Holly and Kingston.
FromFord Methods and the Ford Shops Arnold and Faurote. 1914-15.
Amazing factoid, 1,000 T's being built a day, "safe stock" was 25,000 pieces of every part at any time. Ford used "just in time" techniques from its suppliers, must have been a huge job before computers to track incoming goods and inventory control!
Since the question was asked does anyone know if Ford actually made the frames for T's?
I know the front cross member is stamped Ford but did Ford actually assemble them with preformed parts at the factory? I cant recall ever seeing a photo of a 'frame shop'.
Most every thing else was mentioned in the above posts except framework.
No, the frames were made by various manufacturers also. Many are stamped with the maker on the rear cross member.
Up until about 1914, Ford made almost none of the parts themselves. As Highland park kept gearing up and expanding, they were making more and more parts on their own. Many of those parts, were made both by Ford and outside suppliers as needed. Ford had one of the largest foundries in the world. As such, I would expect they would have made most of their own engine parts, but I would only be guessing if I gave a year by which that would have happened.
My understanding for years has been that Ford also drop-forged their own axles. But the more I learn? The more I find that that may not be entirely true? There were several companies that made some of them, and a lot of axles I have looked at in the past couple of years have maker's marks indicating they were not made by Ford.
I really would like to know a lot more than I do. I think they were making a lot of their own stuff through most of the '20s. But I also think Ford tried to write some of their own history the way they wanted it to be. Not necessarily the way it really was.
I am still trying to learn.
Some good earlier info in Ford Methods and the Ford Shops from 1915 when the assembly line got going. From then on Ford was into trying to satisfy the public with a car, as people wanted to be free to roam from home and get off the slow horse
Production and lowering the price was Henry's full out chore. So the years 1919-1927 and beyond was all about making the key parts, even if little ones, to drop the price and keep pace with sales....many thousands of parts then came in-house during that period that Ford would then manufacture.
Find a copy of The Ford Industries, 1926, and it will provide some good insight of the operations and part mfg.
Here are a few photos from that time.
Blocks being ganged milled, these machining operation were actually done at the foundry shops, as the blocks were cast, cooled, then machined all in one area to hold down handling cost of moving product around.
Stampings for small steel parts...lots of them!
By 1919 even the Hyatt style roller bearings were being made in-house....with the requisite script!
Rather remarkable in all. Huge operation putting out one product...the Ford car.