I'm trying to get a title for my dad's Model T Touring and I'm having trouble narrowing down the year. I believe it to be a 21,22 or 23 body. At some point the original engine was changed out and I'm having a heck of a time removing the block paint and deciphering the serial number. I'm hoping some of you can provide me with guidance looking at production changes from year to year that may help with identification. I'm happy to get photos of any specific areas. I've been reading through production changes and honestly am a bit lost in the terminology.
I'll be able to get pictures later today.
Thanks in advance for any assistance.
That eng ser # is June 1925 but without other details this could be a replacement. engine ser #'s are on the home page in the encyclopedia.
Pictures of the body would help identify the year.
The pictures needed would be all four sides of the exterior, the dashboard, pedals and windshield. That's a good start, if other pictures are needed, they could be added later.
I'm getting an engine date of July 1, 1922, BUT that's based on my reading of this little picture. Maybe you can get a better reading of it in person and post the number. For the rest of the car, shoot pictures as described in this link.
I read the number as 12039347. If so, G.R.Cheshire is correct.
Welcome to the forum. If you already know what you plan to do with the car (keep for the family, sell, other) that will help folks know what advice to share with you.
From the photo you shared of the engine serial number, it appears that the engine number was changed sometime in the past. That is not unusual back then. The important thing for your title is for the actual engine number and engine number listed on the title to agree. And even that is not that important in some states where the state would assign a new VIN to the vehicle. Or would even allow you to use one of the other numbers you find on the car. I don't know how detailed oriented the NC Department of Motor Vehicles is when it comes to older cars.
I would suggest that you contact some of the local old car folks near you. In Sumter SC there is (or at least 12 years ago there was) one worker at the DVM that actually likes old cars and understands the SC rules for titles and transferring titles etc. The rest of them are nice folks but they don't appreciate that there is not a check mark for a 3 door on the computer form.
Yes, additional photos would be great. Please see the posting at: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/708324/772487.html where a similar question was posted and what was discussed there. It may give you some clues - or not.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Donna, not sure of your state but here in Texas I found the the requirements and ease to secure a title varied as to who was doing the inspection/paper work, did it rain that day, was it payday, etc. My last inspector told me all he wanted to see was a matching engine no. that was duplicated on the frame. Knowing that this was not a requirement for pre 25' I hammered it into the frame. Title done.
Jerry, her profile says North Carolina.
Hi G.R., Keith, Steve, John,, Hap,Jerry, Dick,
I'll get some more photos up. Car is parked in mom's garage and I can't get it out today for better pictures. As to our intentions with the car, it was my dad's first car and he has kept it with him his whole life. When you see the beautiful wooden spokes please know I scratched black paint off every one with a shard of glass. :-). The car will be passed down to his grandsons and hopefully stay in the family. My father is no longer with us but his sweet Model T reflects his spirit.
So to the pictures, and again I apologize for the quality.
Mom thinks it was a 1924 originally so I stand corrected.
Car is a 1924 or 1925 Ford.
Post the serial number of the engine (actually type it in a post) or at least take a better photo of it and we can tell you when it was assembled.
Looks like a 24. Could be anywhere from late 23 to 25. There was a change in the radiator in 23 and you have the high radiator, which was the later one. That radiator continued to the end of production. The cowl lights were used on the models which came with no starter. They were oil lamps, however your engine has a starter. But then again, those lights could have installed later because they are brass which would not have been original for that year. Or the starter could have been added later. By the time these cars are over 90 years old, many changes have been made to them and you are lucky to find one which is as original as this one is.
I'm still struggling with the serial number. My best guess is ?2039347.
DMV here has just asked me to determine what year the car is, so in my heart I wanted to learn/confirm what year the original car was and then to determine a year based on the replacement engine. I was hoping the old serial number had been stamped into the replacement engine and all the stars would align on a single year. It is sounding like the car body may be 1924 and the serial number for the engine would be 1925. Below is a picture of the serial number location before I started working it down.
? Looks like a 6 or maybe a 5
If that first number is a 6 the engine number is higher than any manufactured during the time the T engine was made. Does that car have a door on the drivers side? If it does, it could have been made in Canada If the first character is a C. However I don't know anything about the number sequence for the cars made in Canada.
There is also a possibility that the original number has been ground off and a new number stamped on at some time.
No door on driver's side. Have to slide from passenger side.
I would go with 1924 model year on your grandfather's touring.
Based on the windshield photo seems to be without holes in the upper frame for rear view mirror (has a stick on) as the mirror holes came late '24/'25. And the front fender bead runs along side the splash shield, late '24 and '25 the fender bead is under the splash shield making the fenders seem wider.
Plus the passenger door hinges seem to be are un-equal length, that is a trait of the 1924's, as the 1925's are equal.
Could indeed have a replacement engine, that is common, a 1924 would typically have engine numbers in the 8,100,000 to 10,200,000 approx.
The 1924 model year for Ford ran from July 1923 to Aug 1924.
As for the serial number on the block, appears to be pretty pitted. Most times lacquer thinner to remove paint or oil caked on helps preserve what digits remain.
Can't really tell from your single photo, maybe clean with solvent again and wipe over dried boss with swipe of black paint or fill in with magic marker and see if numerals become more legible.
A serial number of 2039347 would be June, 1917. We haven't seen the engine, but if this one has a starter that date is wrong and the digit in front of 2 has to be 1 if this is a ford number. The last model T engine ever made was number 15,176,888, so if the digit in front of the 2 is anything other than a 1 this isn't a Ford number. If it is a 1, the number dates the engine to Friday, June 26, 1925.
Sorry, but I'm STILL voting for an engine number of 12,039,347. June of '25 engine. Likely a replacement. That's OK. :-)
Even IF it's a 12,039,"5"47 engine, it's still a June engine, yes? Unless the 1 in the 12 million part is a C? Yes?
Thanks Dan for seeing the uneven door hinges. I saw them too.
'24 sure but perhaps even more Bitsa's that we don't see other than the obvious minor foibles with paint. That's OK, it happens. :-)
A "C" should be a Canadian number, and I do not believe they went anywhere near that high (Less than a million if I recall correctly from the "Really how many model Ts" threads.
I am not convinced that those are Ford factory stampings (although they may well be). Again, a common thing back in the day. Replacement engines came from many sources, some of which used their own numbering systems.
Why dispute the thing from being built in June of 1925?. Why would you need a replacement engine in June of 1925 for a 1924 Model? That is possible but not at all likely. More likely to find a replacement engine after a few years - not a few months. By logic that I accept the first digit HAS to be a 1. 1924 was the peak production year for bodies for sure but it is rather common in my experience for cars produced as BRANCH ASSEMBLED cars for them to have a lot of earlier parts on them as they were used up by Ford. I saw a classic bunch of branch assembled mid calendar 1911 cars once that all had brass FORD script plaques in their front radiator fins. A detail that was supposedly stopped before the end of 1910 at Detroit plant. Unless there is real evidence that the engine was swapped out at some point, why call it anything other than what it is saying it is - a June 1925 car. The only thing not 1925 are the brass cowl lights but those are not for ANY T later than 1915 so they thus prove themselves to not be a part of this car ever when it was built by Ford. A slightly earlier body built in 1924 does not make the car a 1924 if it was assembled in June of 1925 by any Ford assembly plant. As for the number shapes, I have seen everything from perfectly aligned numbers to sloppy up/down wavy numbers half stamped on top of each other. If the block came as a NEW replacement motor from Ford then it probably would have been restamped with same number as the old motor but I don't see any reason to suspect the motor was swapped at such an early date and then get only a slightly later dated motor. If the body had a wooden firewall then that would be different. I vote to accept it as it stands - a legit June 1925 Touring car having been in the same family the whole time.
I think the first number is a 6 too.
Donna, What a beautiful car and a fine legacy to your father. I'm happy it will stay in the family for the grand kids, and hopefully the great-grand kids to enjoy. It looks like your dad or somebody dressed it up with a few additions, like the older brass cowl lamps, radiator shell, and brass steps. It's obvious this car has been loved. You are lucky to have it in your family.
93 years is a long time, and an engine could have been swapped at any time along the way.
The body is typical of a 1924.
Engine number is 1925
Using the engine date would probably create less confusion/red-flags to future owners/buyers.
Ok. I did state that dad had a different engine put in it. I have paperwork from 1990 from a Model T shop ( now closed) stating they installed a "T-engine Gemsa Head # 30." No serial numbers. I was thinking dad did this to get more speed for the car but I'm not certain why the change. I do know he regretted it.
I've made my mind up about the vin #. You know how you can look at a picture puzzle and see a face if you focus on one area and another face if you look elsewhere? Well if I look at the first vin number to the right of it I see a partial "c", if I look towards the left I see the "1" and I believe the fact I can't yet get the paint off the right side causes us to see a "c". So I believe the vin on this engine is 12,039, 3(5)47.
Confirming door hinges are unequal. Confirm there are no holes in windshield frame for rear view mirror.
The date for 12039347 is Friday, June 26, 1925. The date for 12313695 is Tuesday, September 9, 1925.
That last number makes it a June 26, 1925 vehicle and the slant windshield came out in 1923, so it is after 1923 and before 1926 for sure.
Donna - You stated that your Dad had a different engine put in the car. I don't think so! If you are basing that on the fact that you have paperwork that states, "....they installed a "T-engine Gemsa Head #30". I think that perhaps you have mis-interpreted that wording. I think the Model T shop merely installed the Gemsa head on your Dad's Model T's original engine, and on the receipt that you have, they have merely identified EXACTLY what type of head was installed,...."T-engine Gemsa Head #30". Not just any ol' Gemsa Head, but a particular type Gemsa Head,....a "T-engine Gemsa Head". See what I mean? Hope this clears up a bit of confusion,.....harold
The September 9, 1925 serial number correlates to the 1926 model year.
Let's see what you have for brake and clutch pedals and if the hogshead bolts to the rear of the block.
What/where the heck is the "hogshead?"
:-) Yep! The iron cover just to the right of the pedals with the tin, angled cover with 6 screws to hold it on.
The hogshead is the transmission cover the 3 pedals mount in. :-)
Donna, I had a chuckle when you mentioned scraping down the wooden spokes with a shard of glass to get them back to natural timber. I did the same for my 1920 buckboard. Spent hours while away at the beach over one Christmas, when we weren't out fishing. I notice the right front wheel is the same as our Canadian sourced wheels. It has the indents in the steel felloe to take a loose lug rim. Your dad must have replaced that one at some time. There can be a mismatch with certain brands of fixed lug rims, but if the car has run well with what is fitted then it should be OK.
As others have said, "Drive the wheels off it, and enjoy".
Allan from down under.
A lot of you guys seem to have forgotten what a 1925 is! The door hinges are a start, the fenders are another, the steering wheel, and the all metal cowl area up front, not to mention the two rivet hand brake quadrant. Seems to look like a 1924.
Where did the engine block with the numbers 12313695 come from? Is this another engine you have? A car that old could have many things added or changed.
I don't see any photo of the handbrake quadrant Larry mentioned. The two-rivet quadrant first appeared on 1925 models. A 1924 car would have a four-rivet quadrant. The engine and several other things could easily have been changed, but I think a change of quadrant is very unlikely.
Ok. So not sure where this engine number came from, 12313695 But I think it was part of guessing what the actual serial numbers on the car read. It is not a separate engine block. Ok so now I need to get a picture of the hand brake quadrant. Is that the top of the hand brake? Bottom where it connects? Any other requests? This is fun.
The crescent-moon shaped bracket attached to the frame rail with the teeth that the parking brake pawl engages. Here is a photo from elsewhere on the forum of a four rivet one. Each end of the bracket has two rivets, for a total of four.
Note to the attention-challenged members of the forum: This is not a picture of Donna's bracket!
The picture shows that Donna's bracket is definitely 1924 or earlier.
Maybe re-read Mark's last sentence above, Steve.
That mark which looks like a C might be something an engine rebuilder placed there to identify his work? Maybe?
Ok. So I'm about to post a picture of MY T. Please know the taking of this photo required lashing out at cobwebs, laying in dirt and grease with white shorts on and a bit of a neck strain. But you guys are worth it!
Yup, that's a 4-rivet bracket.
I once looked at a very nice original 1952 Oldsmobile. It had the original paint, upholstery, and folding top, as well as four cylinder.engine. The wood spoke wheels were in excellent condition, as was the entire car.
And it was a touring.
I even saw the original title.
Seems that in about 1922, an Oldsmobile dealer received a substantial order of new cars to be sold. He soon sold all but one. That one, remained in his showroom for thirty years before being sold. LEGALLY, that car was titled and considered as a 1952 automobile, being sold by its authorized dealer.
Steve T., it was just a dumb attempt at humor.
Steve, I laughed😎
Got it !
Ian going to take a stab in the dark. You have a nice Ford Model T touring. Made with original parts from 1924-1925. Most everyone owning a car of that era are more concerned with having a running engine than a "correct" engine.
Maybe that is true, but I think times have changed, at least I hope they have. I believe most T guys would prefer to have the correct year engine in their car.
I went one step further than that when I was building my '25 pickup. I wanted a July engine block with a 12 million number. A club member came forward with one from Minnesota, and I bought it. No two parts in that engine, including the transmission are from the same car.