Is there a consensus on why aftermarket fender braces were so widely used in a lot of the old pics we see here?, and what was their major selling point? My T rattles and shakes along like it should But i did notice there are some stress cracks forming on the lower part of one of my fenders, is this the reason why they are used, or is it something else?
The ones that go across from fender to fender sure are ugly, in my opinion.
Have you seen those pictures Jay posts of all those people sitting on the T's fenders?
Dale, yes those are the people that worry me. Sitting in my car to take a selfie, no problem, sitting on my fenders,...Big problem.
Probably from people or misc stuff being piled on the fenders back when these T's were just "used cars".
On a nicely restored or very nice original car, I wouldn't want the braces. On the weathered '24 that I'm bringing home in a couple weeks, they help round out the look.
The idea of a vehicle being an object of beauty had not really entered the rank and file car owner's conciousness by the mid 20's. Sloan over at GM was busy programming American car buyers with the his concept of longer, lower and wider but it hadn't taken off yet. Edsel Ford had the same vision, but it's one that Henry never did get. Younger buyers got the concept by the 30's but the older wagon owner types just saw cars as a wagon, without the problems of a horse out front. One more bracket here or there didn't matter.
The fenders develop cracks around the rivets after a few thousand miles. Before long all the rivets have spider cracks around them. Eventually the rivets are not holding the fender to the fender brace at all. Those fender braces held the fenders in place. A necessary item to "quick fix" a typical T problem.
Not pretty, but necessary.
Its a reminder that Model T's aren't indestructible like we would like them to be.
In their day Model T's were used a LOT more than we use them today. We tend to forget that I think.
Like someone said years ago "a piece of tin and a piece of board, put it together and you've got a Ford. Which means T's do have their limits.
I like 'em, the front braces for the fenders, keeps the shaking down, really strengthens the front fenders too and to me looks good
Maybe a good thread to showcase the different accessory fender braces?
I purchased this one a while back, cleaned it up and painted it. It has square nuts at the inside ends of the clips and a rod with RH threads on one side and LH threads on the other to allow it to be tightened up like a turnbuckle. I stuck some thin, black foam tape on the bottoms of the brackets as a cushion to keep from scratching the paint on the fenders.
Unfortunately, my fenders must already be somewhat sagged, because the rod is too short (by several inches) to fit my car.
I could cut the rod in the middle and weld in another piece, but I could be persuaded to offer it for sale for the same price I paid for it to someone else, hopefully it will fit their car without having to be modified. If interested, PM me.
Here is one reason they made braces
Great photo of a "modernized" 1916 touring.
Mark: sent you a PM
Thanks Jack, I sent a reply directly to the email address listed in your PM.
My fender brace is spoken for pending payment, thanks Jack and MTFCA!
I've got several - and different - front fender braces that I'd sell. Text 512 376-4180 for pics.
I bet the T that was being used for hauling hay in Dennis S's picture ended up a trailer of some type on a farm.
Lots of T's were used till the very last before they went to a scrap yard!
Or to the back yard.
Or the woods.
Most of the chassis parts I've found over the last how many years have been used as trailers and everything is plum wore out.
I have a set of "Fender-Form-Brac"s like Mark's from Met Products. They really do link the front fenders and frame together.
I think they look pretty good. :-)
Dan, that style is quite interesting and it sure can grow on ya!
Thanks for the comments. It just goes to show how utilitarian the Model T actually was viewed, and used back in the day. I probably pamper my T too much. I agree that Dan's brace seems to be the most pleasing to the eye.
I suppose that some Ts received proper care, but I suspect that many more were ridden hard and put away wet.
Check out this fender brace. It appears that it actually incorporates a couple of flag holders.