This came up on the OCF thread, and I thought I'd begin a new "period correct" speedster thread. This photo appeared in the October, 1914 Ford Times:
If you build a Speedster you can expect some Flack no-matter what color you paint it. And what period are we talking about? The majority of Model T Speedsters were built some years after the chassis was built. 2 years old or 92 years old, They still are a deviation from original. You need to build it the way you like it and enjoy it.
Now Factory original Speedsters are a total different Animal. I'm not sure Ford made many of them.
Speedsters were the forerunners of what later became the term Hot Rods in the late 40's - 50's and onward.
They were what the individual envisioned them to be using what parts were available and adding their own idea of what it should be. That would be the color also. And that could be almost anything. And I said almost. MHO
I would love to bring this one to OCF!!!!
The Speedster at the top of this page could be black. Any shiny paint looks white on top surfaces, look at the touring car's front fender.
Everybody needs to understand that black and white photography is not a good method to asses the color of something. That said, hundreds of original era B&W photos clearly show that the cars were not all black. "All black" was a Ford factory thing. Even Canadian and Australian built roadster and touring cars were not "all" black during the 1914 through '25 years.
Certain colors were popular and common, while others simply were not available during different eras. Metallic or metal-flake colors were generally never used before the early '30s. Yes, even I can find an exception to that rule (not on an automobile).
Unfortunately, I don't have handy any examples, but sales literature for speedster bodies and kits in the '10s and '20s sometimes list the common colors offered. Generally darker blue, green, and red were common. Yellow was also common. White and gray were less common, but sometimes offered.
Lighter colors, light blue, powder blue, light green, pink, were all available, but not popular, and not common. But you cannot correctly say they were not done.
I don't recall what magazine it was in, but it was about 45 years ago. A fellow restored an original 1920s custom-built roadster (not a Ford). The original builders "trademark" color was pink. The car still had remaining original pink on it. The builder was regionally known and had built several custom cars this color pink. After a lot of soul-searching, the restorer restored the car to its original color. Pink. With lots of apologies at car shows. He said he wanted it done right.
Some years ago, I saw the remains of an original speedster body with enough nice original paint on it to clearly show it was a light powder blue. It was done. I told the fellow that owned it that he should keep that unrestored just as it was just to show what was done. I hope he did.
One of the sad truths about original era speedsters? Most of them built? Most of them were never finished. Just like the hotrodders of the '50s and '60s. But I would argue, that most of the ones that were finished? Were not painted black when they were done.
That is my opinion.
Thank you Rob for this thread! Another good educational discussion.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
2 1/2 years in the works, but it's getting there little by little.
Nice - like those tires !
All the body builders in the day for 'speedster' or 'bug' bodies offered colors, can't say I have seen black in commercial advertisements. Most list colors avail, and some say any color the customer wants!
Ford's factory 'speedster' / 'racer' in June of 1909 wasn't painted black
So, what is "period correct"? Period correct for the chassis or period correct for the body. Personally, I don't think ANY Speedster should be included in the OCF. Ford didn't make any speedsters unless you stretch the definition to include the Torpedo. Most of those were blue and made only for a short time. But the Torpedo was a Ford manufactured body style.
The Speedster is a custom car and not really a brand or make of any one car manufacturer. It doesn't fit nor belong in a showing next to a 1909 Buick or a 1927 Ford for that matter.
If you want to show your Speedster, take it to a custom car show. That's what it is and you can paint it any color you want.
THE TEXT DISAPPEARED ???
Original paint and it's green
Does that mean all Hacks, TT trucks with original wood cabs, school busses, or ???? should not be there either. ??? Our local car club has a show each year, we have a "foreign non-US class" we are a small show so that is the best we can afford to do. One year there was a Rolls Royce silver cloud, and a VW Beetle as the only two "foreign cars" The VW was flawless. It would probably have been a "senior" in a bigger show. The Rolls was a nice car but maybe at best you could call it a 50s era restoration, that "did not age well" Needless to say the VW won first. the Rolls won second, but really deserved a "third". The Rolls owner was a stuck up snob and threw the most childish fit I have seen a grown man throw in public. He said his Rolls was far superior to the VW and the VW should not even be allowed to be judged against his Rolls or be on the same field. Ive seen "early" brass T owners have the same opinions about all the rest of the Model Ts when compared to the early stuff. (not all early owners,but some) Just thinking out loud ... my opinions only, for what little its worth ...
What if I put a an 1880s buggy body on a 1927 Model T chassis. Would that qualify to be in the show? I don't know the realm of the OCF or the rules. I don't know if its intent is to include factory produced cars only or if any "old" car can enter. I'm simply voicing an opinion.
What year were bright colors invented?
Define "bright colors". My guess is around 8,000BC.
Not Model T, but both these Model K have different configurations. Both were used during their production period. The first was owned by a Ford dealer, the second by Ford Motor Company. In my opinion they are "period correct" examples produced or configured by Ford Motor Company or Ford representatives, and therefore acceptable for vintage car events:
The first photo in this thread shows a pre 1915 Ford dealership, with what is obviously a Model T brass speedster parked in front. While not a production body style, still a period example of how a Model T was configured and used at the time.
In my opinion, if a "speedster" or "racer" is restored or built to period specifications, it is just as good an example as a T with reproduction body, fenders, or other "production" parts. I think a period correct car should be an example of a car that was in use at the time, regardless of aftermarket, or non Ford, add ons, but that's just me....
I'm including the picture below not to confuse the discussion but to show that some early vehicles were quite colorful.
This is a buddy's 1907 Autocar Model 14 Flat Track Race Car. This is a documented factory built car that was raced here in New England. The factory color is Cerulean Blue.
Love the checkerboard design. I'm with Frank on the paint looking white but maybe being black or dark blue in the top photo? JD
I didn't know where else to use this one!
This is a fence-top I have been dancing on for a long time. While my personal preferences have always leaned toward earlier and horseless carriage factory built cars, I also like and enjoy later cars and speedsters. I have argued for more than 40 years that a properly restored speedster is as much a part of automotive history as any Packard or Pierce Arrow. Certainly, they are also in the same vein as trucks with limited production or one-off bodies. These things were how things were done in the era. They were part of the rule, not just exceptions.
Also, certainly, there are shows and tours at which speedsters should not be taken. I have never been to the OCF, but really hope to make it happen soon. From what I have seen of it? I think at least some speedsters should be allowed there. But even I would not want too many of them at that particular event. And I might have to go in one. (I really want to make it in time to see Marty B as the announcer!)
Many automobile production companies also built special cars for racing and promotion. Ford certainly built several before the model T was produced. They built two specials on the "line" in 1909, plus two custom racers used by Frank Kulick in the T era. In addition to that, a couple speedsters were built for Edsel Ford.
Then comes another line to question. There were several special bodied speedster type cars built by Ford dealers across the country. They have an odd place between the factory built cars, and the home-built hobby cars.
Several companies, including Raceway, Faultless, and Mercury, offered speedsters ready built in turn-key form. They often started with a chassis purchased directly from Ford factory or the local dealer. These cars should be considered original build custom offerings by an outside builder. There are so many steps between a standard factory car, a low production offering, and a barnyard cruiser. Another place where that line is nearly impossible to draw.
On top of all that. Many small local businesses custom painted cars. It may not have been really common? But some cars (even standard touring and runabouts) were painted custom colors when new just because someone wanted something a little different than their neighbor had. Really no different than most of the after-market industry.
But that is all me.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
What you guys are missing is the respect for the blowhard know-it-all who has an inner
drive to let all comers KNOW that he has all the facts and the YOU are most certainly
How else can shallow people jockey to win cheesy plastic trophies and ribbons if some
ass clown doesn't turn something fun into a new paradigm of "I'm better than you" ?
C'mon,people, show a little courtesy for the pompous and arrogant !
Over time i have read and learned much but even now i'm forced to ask-- Burger,did you get all your shots when you were little?? Bud in Wheeler,Mi.
Something additional to consider when trying to judge color in early black & white photos is the color sensitivity of the film itself. Old photographic emulsions of the '10s, '20s and '30s was either color blind (sensitive only to blue) or orthochromatic (sensitive to blue, green and perhaps some yellow - IIRCC). Both of these weren't sensitive to red and registered red as black. Panchromatic film did come out in the 1920s but really didn't take hold until the late 1930s.
Dang you Bud!!! I just spit my Tea all over my laptop!!! No offense Burger, I do enjoy your posts, mostly<g> Dave
I almost always enjoy Burger's posts. I like and understand his sense of humor and view of the world and life.
But yes, I too almost spewed when I read Bud's comment!!!!!
Thank you all!
Burger takes his shots here. Anyone who loves TT's as much as he does is OK in my book.
Here is an example of how color shows up in B&W photos. These were the same color in 1923.
A link to a thread that further has a link to a Shorpy photo showing dozens of cars of all kinds including Ts from the mid '10s. What makes this relevant to this thread, is that behind a few other cars, half hidden by a building near the edge of the picture, is a speedster. In the B&W photo, the speedster appears white, but may have been yellow. It is a nice looking car from what I can see of it. I can't even be sure that it is a T, but likely is.
If you've got nothing better to do? Check it out.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Here's a color chart that shows the color pick on the left and the same color converted to grey scale (B&W Photo color). Different displays will show the colors differently but both sides used the same colors prior to conversion to grey scale.
Towards the end of the B&W era, modern B&W films were called "Panchromatic" because of the ability of the emulsion to record the colour red in a true tone. (They needed to be processed in total darkness)
Earlier B&W films were "Orthochromatic" and considered to be colour blind. (able to be processed under red safe light) Red was not able to be recorded and therefore the red area on the negative was left blank. So when it was printed in the positive, those red areas were presented as black.
So, if you agree that the speedster in the pic at the top of this page is black, there is a very good chance that is actually red.