I assume the population of running Model T's on the road peaked in May of 1927, then began to decline as people wore them out or wrecked them. The decline in numbers probably peaked with WWII scrap drives. I figure the population stabilized in the fifties as Model T's became antiques worth saving, then started slowly growing as people resurrected basket cases and put cars together from parts. That's still going on today, and there are more running Model T's on the road every year. Anybody care to speculate on how many?
Insurance policies may be an accurate way to tally them.
I don't know about that Ed. My TT was "off the books" as far as insurance or registration is concerned for over 60 years. In spite of that fact it was running most of those years on my grandfathers ranch then on my uncles ranch.
I don't think there's any way to get an accurate count, but Hal, Tom and Dan are all wrong. I know for a fact that there are currently 274,831 Model T Fords in operation.
Here is some tidbits from past posts on the subject:
Many authoritative sources claim only 1%-2% of a model year car will survive after 35 years.
So if you use that rule, then maybe up to 300,000 Model T Fords have survived after 35 years,.... and now 80 years later maybe only 200,000 are somewhere intact and complete or maybe in parts, or in parts and pieces, located in barns, yards, garages, fields, ditches, river beds, haystacks.....
By Tom Rootlieb on Tuesday, September 10, 2013 - 06:47 pm:
[Mfg. of replacement Ford T sheet metal parts] We have never kept track of numbers. Our company is 40 yrs. old this year and we can somewhat guess by recollection. The number of employees has varied from 3 to 18. My guess is that we have sold 3 to 4 thousand dropped- axles and sold 4 to 5 thousand Model T speedster kits. Some years ago we were looking at similar data and we realized that we had put a new hood and 4 new fenders on a minimum of 40,000 cars. At the same time we put our best guess on how many cars survived, intact and in pieces at 200,000. While that number may seem big, it's only a 1.3% survival rate. So we have at least another 100 yrs. of work to do. Back in 1973, when I was 24 and we were just starting out, my father and I were talking one day and he told me not to count too much on this business, because in 10 years there wouldn't be any old cars left out there and we would both be looking for a job. I'll be 65 on my next birthday.
Seems like more and more T's to be on the roads...if these piles sell fast..!
I didn't state the question very well. I didn't mean to ask how many running T's there are, but how many "new" ones are added each year. There's no way to know, but it makes for some interesting speculation.
I bet there are a lot of car parts out there that would make new cars, and would add up to the number of assembled cars whatever that might be - 273,417 I think. I added a survivor from buckets of parts, and have enough left for another car. Good question Steve..JD
I have a spare hood for my 14 Model T. It is a reproduction and I believe my Uncle bought it from Howard Caccia (I hope I got the spelling right) quite a few decades ago.
You have to deduct all the cars that have been blown up in various movies over the years.
Oh, I misunderstood the question. My answer is now 12.
There are nearly 12 from Spokane alone each year. The correct answer nationwide (I believe) is 14.
Following a few minutes of deep thought while going to the bathroom I believe that an additional 19.7 Model T's will be added in 2015.
The 0.7 part is because one guy in Kansas will not complete his vehicle before the end of the year because he spends a lot of time on the forum.
The real question is which model T is the one that most people are collecting and don't want to give up and will be around for a long time from now. Is it the brass models or the black models that are more likely to be collected or our T's are for simply for the pleasure of the hobby and pleasant company of likeminded people?
If the question of how many "New" Model Ts are being produced there are some questions of what years are being produced? What are the popular body styles being produced? How are the VINs being generated? Do the VINs follow the original manufactures sequence?
I'd say no new model T's been produced since 6 1914 style tourings were built by Ford for their centennial in 2003. They don't follow the original number sequence and they're never driven on the streets outside Greenwich village.
But there are a few Model T's being recreated each year from a mix of old parts and some repro metal and wood by old car enthusiasts all over the globe. Sometimes a hot rodder mates an original body with a new produced chassis, while the original chassis is rebuilt by a old car guy that puts a new speedster or hack body on the chassis - that makes two cars from one barn find - but only one resurrected Model T, in the minds of most T'ers
Myself, I assembled a lot of extra stuff while finding better parts for my runabout - thus, last year I made a pick up out of the extra parts that may have originated from 50 different T's from 1915-27. Most of it is 1925-27, so I choose to call it 1926. The VIN is from one of the engines I have, but there's another one in it now.. Had to stamp the # in the 1925 frame anyway for registration.
Now there's a another heap of old parts beginning to accumulate in a corner of my garage.. Might be a doodlebug or something completely different, time and whatever parts I find will tell
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(Message edited by Roger K on November 04, 2015)
Black or brass? Probably black, because more parts are available. Body type? I would guess open cars (touring, roadster, speedster, hack) for the same reason. All the extra work and the relative scarcity of body parts probably limit the number of coupes and sedans. I don't know about RP's. Beds are scarce/expensive, but a lot of folks make their own wooden beds. I would think in most cases the engine number is used as the VIN, just as with other T's. If the person putting the car together is trying to be reasonably "correct", the rest of the car will match the engine and will fit the original Ford serial number sequence. If it's a hodgepodge of different years, I guess not.
Hmm, well, I have enough parts around that I intend to assemble into: 1)26 TT C-cab, & 2)a black era boat-tailed speedster. My 16 has been in pieces for 5 decades now (although it's registered & on Non-op, so it was probably already counted & was a pretty complete car when I got it, although apart).
So I guess someday I'll be the "creator" of two "new" model Ts. . .
Is a Model T reconstructed last winter (2014) using a 1926 motor, titled as a 1917 touring, really a 1917 touring when sold to a newbie? Or is it a "new" Model T?