My coupelets original Ford radiator has a tag on the back side of the upper tank, passenger side.
The serial number is 0928350, would this be a radiator serial number or a build serial number for the car?
Thank in advance.
I believe your couplet is the tail end of radiator serial numbers. I have heard and read that the radiator was given its own serial number up into 1915 and that ended at sometime during the year. The numbers did not track with the engine serial number, but sort of more or less followed it through those years. As replacement radiators were sold to replace ones damaged, radiator serial numbers tended to get higher than engine numbers. But nobody really knows by how much or how fast.
We tend to think of model Ts having ONLY one serial number, the one on the engine. But that is only true for about half the Fords built from about 1918 through 1925. Even My '24 coupe has a body manufacturer serial number stamped into the floor board riser. After 1925, nearly all Fords had both a frame and an engine number, and they should have originally matched at least through the model A era. Before 1920, many if not most Ford supplied bodies were built by outside suppliers and most of them had a serial number on them. Some of them, including my spring '15 runabout have two body supplier numbers. Up until about mid-year calendar year 1915, most model T Fords had four, and sometimes five, serial numbers. Engine number was the one Ford called the official number, and the one used most often for licensing purposes if the state required it. The firewall "patent-plate" number was sometimes called the "car number" early on (or so I have read). It was not used officially by Ford, and began to drift off numerically fairly early. 1909s and 1910s have been claimed to have matching numbers from new. I have read that somewhere around 1910/11 Ford issued a statement to the effect that only the engine number was to be used for official purposes. The numbers drifted off quickly afterwards. Trent B or Hap T could probably elaborate on that.
A few early Ts may have had matching radiator numbers, but I don't think that was ever intended. Body numbers were always totally independent of car, engine, and radiator, numbers. While a few in the later '10s did have two body numbers, most only had one. On many early bodies, however, that one number would be put in several places. Because these early bodies were largely hand-crafted, the individual body number was often put under the front seat, under the rear seat if it had one, and somewhere on each door so that parts that would be made to fit together could again be put together. Occasionally, even floorboards would have the matching body number on them because the fit from one body to the next would vary a bit.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Is your tag part of the rear radiator panel, or a separate plate that was soldered to that panel? Given that number I think it is part of the rear panel, and not a separate tag.
I was always told by my elders that the soldered tag ended late 1913/early 1914.
Our 16 has the stamped tag that's part of the radd. The no looks likes 1230335
My 1916 touring has the soldered-on radiator tag with the #158895. It also has "18" stamped with 3/8
inch high numbers on the rear wall of the top tank. Would this suggest that the radiator has been replaced at some point with an earlier one? Just curious. Dave Clyde
My 15 has a tag on the radiator...........ww
Mine has the stamped tag as seen above.
My March, 1914 Touring has the solder tag and the Ford tag on the back.
The number on the radiator probably doesn't really mean anything, but it is kind of neat, especially if it's stamped in and has the Ford script.