As some of you know, I have been researching and compiling historical information about the Ford TT Trucks for some years now. My exhaustive research has been difficult at best because Ford clumped the Trucks in with the Cars. Many sources have been found around the world in “out of printbooks”,periodicals,Period photographs, newspapers, drawings and actual hands on studying of existing trucks.
I seem to have come to and end except for the trip that I will be taking this summer to the Ford Archives at The Benson Ford Research in Dearborn. Many of you that I have spoken to through Email and the phone, have encouraged me to finish what I have started since I have put considerable time and money into this endeavor. I feel so close to being done and yes, the Ford TT does have it’s own story to tell. I’m also pretty optimistic about what I’ll find this summer at BFR and that I should complete the Technical portion of what I have to do.
What I would like from you TT enthusiasts is your questions pertaining to Historical or Technical answers you would like to know in a book form about your TT’s.
1) When was my frame made and how can I tell?
2) How many TT’s were built and when did production start and when did it end?
3) What color were they and what assembly plant produced the most of them?
Rather than tie up this whole thread with all the questions you have, send them to me using the PM that way you can write as much as you want.
I do have a pretty good idea of what boxes I will be looking for but if you have any suggestions about places to find good TT Truck info at BFR please send me a PM.
Fred, I didn't know that you were doing this, I for one am glad you have taken this on. You may have noticed on here and on the classifieds lately, there have been several questions brought up about the TT's, and probably, will be many more. I have always had an interest in them because I got one(at least the remains of it)when I was 14 years old in 1964. That was what started this disease! Keep up the good work!!! Dave
Did Ford offer plans for building the cabs and bodies? Did anybody? I have seen original tt trucks with "home made bodies" that were surprisingly similar. However the trucks were made in different parts of the country. Were they kits from someone like Sears?
Who were the after market body builders?
This great I restored several over the years and just had guess nice have simular info on trucks as there is on the cars
TT are coming more popular and desirable
I am curious about the 27's with closed cabs that were supposedly built before T production stopped using cut down sedan bodies. I have looked at 1 up close myself years back and if it was shop done they had to be geniuses.
This is a great undertaking. Pinpointing when certain things were changed would help lots of us better date our trucks. A few things that come to mind are:
1. When did the rear cross member get changed to the longer type?
2. Provide an explain of short vs. long running boards. Contrary to my longtime belief that they were changed at a certain time for all TTs, a recent discussion indicates they overlapped. Which style a particular truck received was a function of cab type.
3. When was the differential clam shell altered to delete the bead at the axle tube?
4. Earlier TTs had a differential shaft and 2 differential gears. Later, a change was made to a differential spider. When did this change occur?
5. My TT has 6315 stamped into the top rear of each rear end clam shell half. I've never been able to find any information on this. It was clearly serialized. Learning more about this would be great.
That's all I can think of for now. As we all know, TTs can be challenging to date, particularly the earlier ones. The more we can learn about when certain things were introduced into the production line the more we'll know about our trucks.
Thank you for your effort!
A chapter on the Ford TT racing program (and independent racing, such
as NHRA) and how today's enthusiast can build his TT to set land speed
records would be helpful.
You're gonna want auxiliary brakes in that thing!
Burger, I think they have an event called "The Isle of Man TT Race"
Fred, I have been told that they did not count the TT,s in the total of T,s built. I heard that many years ago and have not put much stock in it. But it would change the total count. Also heard that VW keep the bug in production even thou it was losing money to out build the T. Thanks for all that you have done. Scott
Fred, I'm, so glad to hear that your many years of work on TT's is coming along well and may (hopefully, soon) result in a book.
I'm interested in all facets of TT's, but one question I have is about the ignition switch panel on the dashboard. My understanding is that up through the '26 models, that the ignition switch panel was the typical rectangular style, and that only for the '27's was it changed to the oval style first used on the '26 cars. Was there a date for this change, or was it just when the '27's came at about August, 1926?
This is just a suggestion, but if you can arrange the dates for your trip to The Benson Ford Research Center for the same time as The Old Car Festival on September 10th and 11th, you'll get a double bang on your trip. There are several TT's at the OCF, and I'm sure you would enjoy it.
Fred, I would like to see some clear photos of all the differences between the early and late frames. Thanks for doing this, great project.
I lot of TT's came from the factory as a basic running gear, engine and hood. My dad bought one of these in 1924 from the local Ford dealer. He said that he had to sit on the fuel tank to drive it home. The TT replaced the horses and wagon used to run a cotton gin.
When he got it home, he had to built a seat and a wooden truck bed suitable to haul cotton, cotton seed, cotton baies and cord wood in the winter to fuel the steam boiler.
Sometime in the late 1950"s when my dad and his brother finished using the TT, I got it.
That is what got me hooked on these darn things called Model T and TT.
Thank you Gentlemen, I can see that we are thinking alike. The trip to BFR will be mostly to verify some questions that I think I have the answers to, but I still want to verify.
Keep the questions coming I'm not leaving until August.
This probably will sound childish but I'm getting excited.
Fred, No it's not childish, just built up enthusiasm for a very worthwhile project. I'm excited about it also and can't wait to see all the TT information you've collected.
As Dan posted above "Thanks for doing this....".
Willie, do you still have Dad's TT ???
I'd like to know more about how TTs were built in relation to the cars. Did they have their own line? Was TT production mixed with cars on the line? Were they built at branch plants as well? What about Canada or other countries? I have seen a lot of photos and videos of cars coming down the line and out the plant door but, incredibly, I have never seen such a photo of a TT.
I am on my second one, look forward to your book. Thank you for your efforts.
A few tips for your visit to the BFRC.
First, make an appointment in advance. The BFRC is open 9;30-4:30 M-F.
Second, when making you appointment, be sure to tell the staff what you want to research. They can be very helpful when it comes to guiding you in the right direction.
Third, at some point you will probably end up looking for answers in Accession 1701 - the parts drawings and record of change collections. One thing you can do to prepare for your visit is to review the sections of the Model T parts books related to the TT trucks. Be sure to bring a copy with you to the BFRC.
The parts drawings and the "Record of Changes" cards are organized by the Factory Symbol Number, or Factory Number. Knowing the catalog number for a particular part is not really helpful, because the parts drawings and Record of Changes are all organized in numerical order by factory number.
All factory numbers begin with a letter code, followed by 1 to 5 digits. The typical letter codes you will run across will be T (Model T car chassis and body), TT (Model TT truck and body parts) and sometimes F (Fordson Tractor), and L (Lincoln cars).
A very few parts may have A or AA prefix codes. These represent parts that originated with the Model T or TT, but were carried over into Model A and Model AA cars and trucks.
Behind the letter prefix code, as stated above, is a numerical code. This is where the parts book will come in handy, because by 1927 there was little rhyme nor reason to the organization of the numerical codes.
There may be an alphabetic letter suffix behind the part number. Typically these begin with the letter A, and proceed alphabetically through B, C, D, etc. These suffix letter codes represent revision numbers. When a part was revised and it wasn't completely interchangeable with the old design, it was given a letter suffix code. For example, 1909-1911 one piece spindle front axles have the suffix code T-202-A". When the two piece spindle front axle was introduced in the spring of 1911 it was given the suffix letter code "T-202-B". I have seen some Model T factory part numbers with letter suffixes that go up to H and L, e.g. transmission covers and headlight bulbs.
Finally, there may be a final suffix letter "R". If a revised part was not interchangeable with the prior version, but the old design needed to be continued in production to service earlier cars, then the letter "R" for repairs was added to the suffix code.
Also keep in mind that most Model T and TT parts are in fact assemblies of other parts. For example, I had a heck of a time finding the body of the NH carburetor until I realized that it is an assembly consisting of the machined casting and two small brass plugs. Then I was able to find the factory numbers for the machined body casting, and the two small brass plugs.
I think you find that when it comes to tracing the history of individual Model TT parts that the Record of Change cards are the most helpful. The cards are organized by factory number and information on how the part was changed over time is recorded on the card chronologically. There are more changes to a part than there are drawings, and sometimes it is difficult to determine how a part changed just by looking at the drawings.
If you have any questions, or run into any questions, just send me an email. I'd be glad to help.