I recently purchased a 1923 Touring that will need a lot of new wood. The re-wooding kits that can be purchased online are very expensive. I am purchasing the re-wooding plans and think I can tackle the bulk of the wood work with the help of my boys. I am not a purist and not committed to replicating original wood types used in the 1920's. This car will be a driver car, not a show car.
I need to know what type of wood should be used for the wood on a Touring to make sure it is able to withstand the jostling and twisting of a Model T. I assume it should be some sort of hard wood, but know little more than that much.
Thoughts and advice would be greatly appreciated.
Ash is what most cars are re-wooded with.
I would recommend ash. It works very well and its not 'brittle' as oak would be.
In other words it has good workability.
ash is fine if it has no creve in it,if it dose it will split just like pine. use a woven gran wood. i use sycamore. got 300 bodies out there. charley
Maybe now is also a good time to ask: where is a good place to get Ash or Sycamore wood?
Charley, I wouldn't brag about having 300 bodies out and about, you might attract the attention of law enforcement!
mark! look out one mite be yours ha.ha. ash should be easy to get but sycamore not so easy. also it must be 1/4 sawed or it will warp when dyed, but it is worth it. charley
Look for a wholesale hardwood dealer that supplies to the cabinet makers' trade. Not much body wood can be made from planed dimensional lumber of any species. You want access to rough-cut 5/4 to 8/4 material.
Ash was the wood preferred by high-quality custom "coach" builders for most body members, not necessarily all of them. The "science" of choosing different wood species for their particular properties, and applying them to body construction where they are best suited of course goes back to the lengthy history and development of horse-drawn vehicles.
Anyone remember the poem "The Wonderful One-hoss Shay" ? (Oliver Wendell Holmes) it includes a sketch of the uses of many different woods in the making of the vehicle. Seems arcane now, and mostly, the "technology" has been lost, certainly it's lost on folks who tend to think "wood is wood".
I'm probably wrong, as following posts will doubtless attest, but in my experience, Model T bodies I've examined have been mostly framed with poplar. Poplar is relatively inexpensive, readily available, and especially forgiving for the wood-worker. It's strong and light, and if you select your pieces, will provide some "woven grain" as Charley suggests, which will guard against the splitting of curved body members where straight-grain may run out and split.
I live in the NW, so I am using Fir. When I need an odd thickness, I go to a lumber salvage place and find old doors that are often thick enough. This is a fun project and I have made many mistakes. I have a box marked NFG and then I reuse some of my mistakes.
Paul in Tacoma
I have a 1914 touring and a early 1915 touring and they are both hard maple, original wood. I like using maple. white oak, ash and poplar.
in the 20s ford was using yellow pine for main sills or any thing they could get! wood was getting hard to get. i have have seen pics of the mountains that look like a forst fire went though them.. charley
I used white oak from a local sawmill. When I rebuilt my stock trailer I got white oak from a large mill in DeKalb, TX. You will save a lot of money if you can deal directly with the mill.