Created my own bench seat configuration as well as a nice set of floor boards for my WWI machine gun carrier that, if you squint just right, might resemble a light express body. I've got the metal trim for the pedals and ebrake and they fit well. I hadn't thought about a floor mat as I presumed the military would just have painted the floor boards green and moved on.
On the other hand, if some sort of mat would prevent a short life span for something that had to be hand crafted, they probably would have cobbled something together.
I don't think I want the nice, Ford logo, floor mats and I'd have to cut them to fit and the bends and seams may or may not fit my custom application. Having trouble finding bulk rubber mats to make my own.
What have you guys/gals dones to create your own floor mat, if anything. Rubber? Jute? Kevlar?
Also, do they go under the tirm to hold it in place? What about the sides? I have no sill plates, but am holding my floorboards down with carriage bolts and could slip the mat under the carriage bolt heads and use them to help keep the mat from shifting.
Any direction greatly appreciated.
Battleship linoleum was very common for floor boards but it needs to be glued to the boards and requires trim. It is very durable and cleans up easily.
How about going to your local lumber yard and ordering enough .060 rubber roofing to do the job and cut to fit?
Hmmmm... vinyl flooring, turned upside down and painted or left natural? Don't know that anyone is going to order 4ft of rubber membrance for me, but some roofing installers might have some left over that I could research.
How were these kept in place. I'm envisioning a solid piece of whatever sliding all over the place. I'm in the process of making my sideboards and was going to make them flush with my floorboards. Perhaps make them 1/4" or so above the floorboards to keep any additional flooring in place? Flush or bent up the bench seat an inch or so to keep it from sliding down and the raised side boards ti keep it from sliding side to side? Fit would have to be exact, but we can do that.
Got me thinking . . . and that's an accomplishment this early in the morning.
You should be able to buy solid color linoleum or vinyl sheet floor at your local flooring store.
You can purchase black rubber rib floor runner by the foot at a local flooring store, hardware store, Menards, etc. It's typically available in 27" and 36" widths.
Another option is black pyramid rubber.
(Message edited by Erik_johnson on January 21, 2017)
I mostly use pyramid rubber mat
For historical accuracy, imagine what the resourceful ambulance drivers would have used in France in WWI that they had a lot of. Probably tent canvas or burlap from horse feed bags. They would have needed to change the burlap out often due to the fact that for much of the year, the battlefield where they had to drive to pick up the wounded was a quagmire of sticky mud that they need to remove from their boots in order to be able to drive. Anything else such as rubber or vinyl would have been very difficult, if not impossible to come by on the eastern front in 1917/18. Jim Patrick
I had thought of a heavy canvs or sand bag type material, but thought it would just stay soaked if wet and rot out the floorboards quicker than no coverage at all.
The ambulance body itself was made of some sort of Fordsonite material similar to Masonite is today, a havy cardboard tar soaked material that did not last many years. Hence, no actual WWI ambulances ixist today. The bodies just rotted away. Some French or other allied nations may have a different ambulance material and some may still exist, but I am under the impression that no Ford Model T ambulances currently exist.
But since I'm not building an ambulance, it's a moot point. A vinyl flooring material reversed and painted OD green is on my radar. A visit to my local flooring company for some old take out scraps may be in order. The stores sell 12ft width rolls, so I'd have lots of scrap.
The thickness of vinyl flooring is such that I could mount it under my metal pedal trim and under the carriage bolt heads that I am using to attach the floorboards to the sill and keep it all in place.
But, we are getting close.
Use the floor runner as mentioned and have someone sew a binder around the edge for a finished look. You could use Velcro to hold it in place. But get the thin stuff. The last roll of Velcro I bought seems a little thick and might "print" through the mat.
Robert, there was not likely to be a floor mat in such a utilitarian vehicle. Your first instinct is most likely correct.
Wartime shortages would also likely rule out any rubber mats.
Allan from down under.
As Allan posted, a rubber mat would likely have not been used, or any hard surface covering over the floorboards.
What perhaps was used then, and popular in the early teens would be a fiber mat. A wool mat were used on the early Fords from the factory, and by 1911 that Ford mat was coco fiber and many sold by aftermarket parts houses.
Early Ford parts book
Coco fiber, could be had in different thicknesses.
A fiber mat would be useful in military cars of the day, rub off the mud and dirt from the boots, to keep pedal surface dry. And easy to pull out and shake off the debris the fiber mat catches.
Sure looks like a fiber mat (wool, horsehair, or maybe coco fiber) to me in this WWI ambulance, loose fitting for removal.
(Message edited by Dan_Treace on January 22, 2017)
Well, being "frugal", I went up to the local big box home improvement store and picked up 1yd of vinyl flooring for $6. It is a nice, dull finish so I should be able to paint it the dark OD green I want for my military application.
It is not only wood grained, but has the slight pattern of unfinished wood as well as the tongue and groove of hardwood flooring. So here it is on my home made floorboards which you cannot see. After primer and paint is applied, only the grain and pattern of the "boards" of the vinyl should be apparent. And, if some of the paint scuffs off after some use, it will look like wood is underneath.
So, it's good enough for me and this motor pool restorcreation.
ON TO THE BED!! Had to special order slotted wood screws from Fastenall. They arrive tomorrow.