Were the rivet heads on the early T frames (1909/10) rather sloppy in appearance? Most, if not all of the rivets on the frame from my 1910 look very crude - not nicely rounded over. One side is rounded but the other is kind of flat and messy looking. I'm suspecting someone replaced the running board supports and all the frame/body brackets, but that seems kind of odd. Then I thought perhaps the very early cars were just put together that way.
I don't know about the 09/10 cars but the rivets in the frame on my brothers 1911 looked good. The photo shows an example.
Bill, I was a engineer for Ford for a short period of time and the standing rule was not to buy a car built in Friday of Monday. Perhaps your's is an example of that old adage, or your hunch is correct that the early assembly methods were not as "sophisticated".
Here are some photos of the rivets; the entire frame is like this. Some heads on the inside of the frame rail are nicely rounded with the outside heads crude, and some rivets on the outside of the rail are rounded with the inside heads crude - go figure!
Some of the rivets WERE flat heads. Some of yours look like they were replaced. But you're lucky that they are rivets. I've seen bolts and nails used in some holes.
Bill, I checked the rivets on my September 09 touting and they are all nicely rounded both inside and outside
Interesting; someone must have taken every item off the frame and re-riveted them back on. What I don't understand is that they re-used the rear corner brackets, which are extremely pitted, but put replacement brackets on the front. I mean, if you're going to take every part off, why not have new corner brackets made? Anyway, I'm not about to do an entire re-rivet job on this frame; what's there is good enough for me!
More than possible that rivets were "re-set" any of a number of times during a car's using life. Most likely with a ball-pein hammer rather than a rivet set and a proper buck. The right tools would have been used in production because they're more efficient and pretty much give regular results even in less skillful hands.
Just curious; how big a job is it to remove and replace most if not all of the rivets on an early T frame?
On topic of frame rivits - what is the best source to get as accurate looking rivits as possible?
Bill, its a big job. Hard to buck the RB and body bracket rivets without distorting the rails. Certainly a two man job. The rivets on the cross members need a special bucking tool. See Tinkerin Tips. Be aware its easy to enlarge the holes removing the rivets. That may or may not present a problem.
John, I use rivets supplied by Big Flat Rivet Co in NY.
In certain place, ie wheel felloes and pan arms, you have to shave round head rivets to mimic the look of the originals. I use a lathe for that.
John: http://bigflatsrivet.com/ He will be at Hershey, but I'm not sure he brings much inventory, jb
I'm bring the stuff that sells most, all the T & A stuff, tools, leaving the ballast home. C4J 28, light pole 41, or is it 42?
Like I said, I think I'll leave well enough alone! No need adding another big job to the list - I already have plenty to keep me busy for quite a while. Besides appearance, they seem to be structurally sound and none are loose so why bother? I'm not looking to have this car judged, and I don't know if they'd mark it down for incorrect rivets anyhow.