Prior to the introduction of Ford offering factory made steel pickup boxes the option was buying an aftermarket wood pickup box from a body / carriage builder. Iíve seen several of these original boxes on line, both on runabouts and cut down touring cars ... and as trailers. Some seem really short and others longer. Some have extra iron mounted boards mounted on the sides ... some donít.
I am buying an original box and I would like to hear from those who have original boxes to know the typical lengths.
I have a commercially built five foot box that came off a 1918 roadster.
Period advertising I have seen typically list five foot and six foot boxes.
In my opinion, five feet give or take a few inches is the ideal length as far as appearance is concerned.
Ford metal bed, '26-'27 56" long
Mifflinburg wood bed, 20's 58" long
Fahnestock's Ford Owner bed plan 55" long
Pretty sure these are typical
Dang it Dan, now you've got me hankerin' for a useful bed on my roadster. I flirted with the idea last winter while I had her in to restore rotted wood in the turtle deck . . . I didn't do it then, because the deck and the restoration is really nice the way it is. After a summer of using Liz, she'd be a whole lot more helpful around the place as a pickup . . . these are really nice examples you posted, how can I pass up the materials list with full instructions ?? Sweet !!
I have a '25 with a factory box. They show up somewhat often. Lots of work, even for a good one!
Mark - A couple years ago, I bought what I think is a pretty nice '23 Roadster/Pickup at an estate sale, at a price that was almost unbelievable. It has a very nicely built and finished wood pickup box that to me, seems to have just the right proportions. Also with the Roadster/Pickup is a matching little utility trailer built of Model T wheels & parts that is almost the same size as the pickup box. They're both 38" wide with flair boards along the top of the sides; the trailer box is 55" long and the pickup box is 54" long. As I said, I didn't build them, but I think the size is perfect,.....FWIW,.....harold
WORKING DRAWINGS & DIRECTIONS FOR BUILDING A SLIP-ON BODY FORD FORD ROADSTERS PERIOD BROCHURE
Here's the link to the brochure I posted on Modeltfordfix:
Mine is 52" long, including the tailgate. It is remade from a store-bought aftermarket bed using the old iron hardware and new wood. One of my local Model T buddies has an original from the 20's which is the same length. You can see mine on my profile page. (I added the curve at the front to mimic the curve in the body.)
And BTW, I've had T's in several body styles, and I like the RPU the best.
(Message edited by coupelet on December 30, 2017)
You should add this to your car...
Here are some pictures of the box I'm buying.
Looks very much like the style #141 that Dan posted above.
As you restore this, please take note that virtually all of these were painted rather than varnished and few, if any were made of oak.
Tailgate latches don't get any easier than that, do they?
I plan to add just a little more "aged" paint to the outer panels. Want the "as found" look to match my runabout but also need to preserve what's there without too much intervention. Will rub oil and wax on the worn wood surfaces.
That box does look like the Mifflenburg "141". I especially like the fit of the box side panels to the roadster body's recurve. I wonder, how regular is that profile from 1913 - 1924 ? If I make one, it will have to fit up to the body like this !
I forgot to add, one detail that kinda stopped me, what to do with a kerosene tail lamp ?? I guess a guy could run without one . . .
I bought a vintage touring car type bracket that attaches under the body. I think it could be heated and bent to work under the back of the box.
Very nice pickup box! :-)
An original I have is 53" overall.
Mark, what are your measurements, it looks bigger?
Some cool hardware. Not sure who makes it.
If it were me I'd be inclined to make up a license plate/light bracket that takes advantage of some hardware already on the box for attachment. Since it's all aftermarket stuff anyways there are no wrong answers.
Here's the bed on our 15 roadster. It's 51 inches long by 33 inches wide.
Nice box Jay, thanks for showing it !
Love these things....but how do you access the battery?
Jay's T is a '15, what battery?
On my '23 cutoff, the farmer made bed had two of the boards fastened with screws.
To get battery access, drop the tailgate, remove the screws and the two boards slide out from under the wood end board at the body.
This bed measures 55" long x 43 1/2" wide x 10" deep.