Has anyone had problems with installing modern safety glass in either an original or new reproduction Model T Windshield? I'm hearing the original plate glass is 3/16" thick and new safety glass is 1/4" thick. The result being it is too thick for the brass glass channel.
I took my original 1912 windshield to my local glass shop a few months ago. They had no problem installing laminated safety glass in it.
The company is Logan Glass in Dearborn and they have a website if you need to ask them questions.
When I brought the two halves in, the older gent at the counter said "So you've got yourself a couple of dune buggies, eh?".
The new glass will probably be installed without the brass channel.
When you take your frames in to be reglazed, have them cleaned, and painted so they are ready to be installed on the car when you are done. Also take your old glass for a pattern if available. The glass shop will probably 'bed' the glass into your frames with an RTV like material.
I just had a new 1926 Roadster windshield cut locally and it is 1/4th inch thick. It went in OK.
The top piece was old 1/4th inch thick safety glass and getting foggy around the edges.
The bottom piece was an early flat glass replacement and 7/32th inch thick.
The book that has all the patterns does not mention thickness at all.
There was a $40 extra charge for cutting the curved glass bottom section. Insurance against breakage perhaps.
Straight edge windshield safety glass pieces are usually $30 to $40. My total cost was $118 with tax.
The Model A uses the same rubber channel as the 1926-1927 open car windshields and that material is available for about $5 a glass.
I have installed safety glass in many T's both open cars and closed cars with no problem using the brass channels. You might find a diffent size in the glass retainers that hold the glass in place. Also be aware that laminated safety glass is available in two thickness.One is 1/4 thick and the other is 5/16. use the 1/4.
I think that you need to reduce the dimensions slightly if still using the channel with modern laminated safety glass. I replaced a piece on my 23 touring this summer and as I tightenned it down, the corner cracked. I had them cut another piece 1/16 smaller and it went in without problem, I re-used the brass channel. I wanted to go with new, but the $90 price of it floored me.
My original windshield retained the channel. I had them do all the work.
My brass windshield frame on my 11 needed a new piece of safety glass. I took it to ar friend who has a glass shop. He normally does house and commercial windows, but had some safety glass on hand. He showed me how to do it. He cut it once on each side. He then poured a small amount of lighter fluid on it and lit the fluid. This caused the plastic in between the laminated layers to become soft. He then just pulled the pieces apart. On the curves at the corners I think he had to do it the same way again in slivers. But he got it done right the first time.
Disclamer is that your mileage may vary
Most glass shops do not polish the exposed edge to the degree that "looks right" --BUT, you can do it yourself. First put a strip of masking tape on both sides of the glass next to the edge you're going to polish. This prevents any accidental scratching of the glass (don't ask how I learned this!). Get some wet/dry sandpaper in various grits ( courseness depending on how smooth the edge already is, something you'll have to figure out yourself), probably 100, 220, 360, 600 and a sanding block. Wet sand the edge, working up to the finer grits until you're happy with it. It's messy, but you'll end up with a polished edge--you can even--if you're game--CAREFULLY buff the edge, but this is too easy to invite disaster--I'd just be happy with the wet sanding (BTW, you can get up to 2,000 grit if you want). After you're done, and have cleaned the glass, remove the tape and clean again. Be gentle with the first cleaning, wash the glass with running water, as the dirty water has grit in it!
I just picked up the 2 clear windsheild safty glasses today for my 47 pontiac.78 bucks for 2 and the edges are sanded better than the stock 1's were.
I forgot to take a T frame but there wasnt anyone there that could have advised me on the cost and technical stuff anyhow.
Glass edges that are going into a brass channel or setting rubber don't require the high polish, that's only for the finished exposed edges.
Although smooth edge sides for door window glass helps prevent premature wear of the glass channels!
A friend of mine took his repo brass 1911 T windshield to a local glass shop that has done many old cars for us guys over the years. They were the ones that told him the modern safety glass wouldn't fit in what he had. He was kinda thrown back by the comment and started asking if anyone else had a problem such as this. Thanks for the comments!