This photo is one of my favorite's
Here's a link to the history
Another great photo. I initially thought it might be a Canadian open Model T because of what appears to be a horn button on top of the steering wheel. But looking closer at the nut that holds the steering wheel and the horn button it is not the style used by Ford of Canada. Instead it is a style that was used by accessory horn button makers. Below is a similar looking nut / horn button made by APCO. Notice the six sided nut. (Thank you Mike Vaughn for posting the photo at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/257047/317063.html?1350519719 )
Below is the nut that holds the Canadian Steering wheel on and to which the Canadian horn button is attached.
The picture above is from Kevin (also called Bill) Mowle’s article “Only in Canada, Eh!” published in the "Vintage Ford" Sep-Oct 1988 used by permission of the club to promote our club and hobby. Note the magneto horn used a single wire and the battery horn used two wires.
And again looking closer at the photo Jay originally posted we can also see the standard USA horn button attached to the steering column. Perhaps at one time the car had 2 different horns or they didn't remove the stock button when they installed the accessory button.
So the slant windshield and cowl section is most likely from a 1924-25 high cowl / high radiator open car. [Disclaimer – since I don’t know the C-cab Ton Trucks that well – I’ll differ to someone more familiar with them to say if that might be the front half of a C-cab or not. I think the riveted steering column to dash bracket looks about the same between the open cars and the C-cab, but I think the C-cab top windshield frame is taller than the top windshield frame on the car. See the 1924 C cab at: http://automuseumonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/SanAntonioNov2012-107.jpg (and yes it has a later wide pedal transmission in that C-cab) ]
But back to the photo Jay posted above, notice it appears to have only the front of the open body. The door hinges and on back are missing. It also appears to have a single seat for one person (bucket seat) – you can see how it curves up and then back down on the seat back. And if you look closer you will see that it appears the gas tank is mounted parallel to car frame taking up the area where the USA passenger would normally go. We can see the gas tank cap just below the dash.
I don’t know what the vehicle was used for – a doodle bug? A tractor? A truck of some kind? But I don’t think it was configured as a regular runabout or touring when the photo was taken in 1939. It does still have the radiator cap and gas cap so that is a hint that it was possible it might still have been in use. Once the gas cap is gone – if the filler hole is left uncovered in an area that rains, the car is not going to be running much longer. Of course the cap can still be there long after the engine was removed. So not a firm data point – but a possibility still existed.
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Looks to me like it has the horn button on the side of the column. Looks like a one-seater too. I wonder why the gas tank is in the passenger floorboard. And why all the material draped all over?
Hap, as far as I know, the Canadian sourced cars we have in Australia all had the cast/forged steering wheel spiders. Is that the case with Canadian cars in Canadia? I don'tthink we ever had the riveted and pressed steel spiders.
If the above is confirmed, it may help interpreting photographs in future.
Allan from down under.
Ken -- I agree with you that it does also have the USA horn button on the side of the steering column.
I did a quick look at a few photos but most of them to do not show the steering wheel spider that clearly or my eyes are not that good etc. I know Russ Furstnow is trying to document changes such as that. And from memory -- I thought I read that the cast steering wheel spider continued much later in Canadian production than the USA production. But I don't know when or if the cast spider was finally used. -- Ok -- I found where I read the information. In Bill Mowle's (also used Kevin Mowle in the past) article "Only in Canada. Eh!" in the "Vintage Ford" Sept-Oct 1988 Note Bill Mowle has been researching Ford of Canada information for years and years and is one of the most knowledgeable if not the most knowledgeable people about the Canadian Fords. But that was over 27 years ago and he may have found additional information since then that corrected or confirmed his statement below:
"The cast type steering gear spider was used until
1925 when it was replaced by the pressed steel type."
Of course the next question is when in 1925? Model year or calendar year and the beginning, middle, or end of that type of year. And of course did Ford of Australia receive a large shipment of cast spider steering wheel to use up?
And yes if we knew when/if a pressed steel spider was used in different areas it could be helpful in dating the cars -- especially early photos of nearly new cars.
Does anyone have the additional information on when/if Ford of Canada used the pressed steel steering spider? As well as when/if Ford of Australia or New Zealand used the pressed steel spider steering wheels?
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The 1927 Touring which was discussed before the end of 2015 appears to be very original,
Here is a photo of the steering wheel on it.
Hap, more on late T steering wheels. As Peter's photo shows, even the improved cars we have, have cast steering spiders. The only pressed steel ones I have seen in Australia have been on US imports.
If there is documentary evidence of a change made in 1925 for Canadian cars, I doubt it was carried over to our export cars. Our Kiwi cousins may be able to shed a little more light on this. Remember, in the absence of local body builders and restrictive tarrifs, they received fully built cars in a variety of Ford factory body styles.
Allan from down under.
Thank you so much for adding the photo of the cast steering wheel spider from the unrestored “Improved Car.”
I agree that some of the other Commonwealth Countries may add some additional data points. Also Australia allowed the importation of closed cars from Canada – and unless Ford of Canada was using one steering wheel for their Canadian market and the older style for the export market – I would expect the steering wheel to be the same.
I don’t think the title of this thread “Old Photo - How Green Was My Valley” is very representative of where we have drifted. And I do think where we have drifted is a great question. So I have started a new thread with the title: Canadian Steering Wheels – any pressed steel spiders? If so When & Where – Canada only or also export? Please post comments about the Canadian Steering Wheel spiders on the new thread located at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/599638/604011.html?1452607135 .
Please continue to post comments about Jay’s photo on the current thread.
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