Man I just recieved my harness from Cole's Ignition & Mfg last week, so I decided to put it on my car and I got to tell you guys what a piece of junk this is. The cloth loom is falling apart as well as open gaps in it. Some of the terminals the solder has plug up the holes. 1 terminal fell off, wires are either too long or way to short..no quality what so ever.
I called and complained to the lady who is the new owner and all I got was excuses that they are having business problems!
The harness I bought from Snyders seven years ago fitted perfectly and even has the thicker battery wire. Easily as good as what came out of the Ford factory, if not better. It would seem that not all repro parts come from the same place and it's useful to know through this forum which are the good and bad ones.
Since John Cole passed on and his "new" wife Hildy has taken over the business the quality has dropped and the price has steadily gone up. His son has started started his own business manufacturing the same parts that his step-mother is selling. I wish I could remember his name or the name of his business as the prices are cheaper and the quality is up to the standards that his dad was committed to.
The company that I work for no longer buys anything from Hildy Cole for the reasons R.J. mentioned along with other poor business practices.
If you look on ebay there is some wiring for sale. I think it is John Coles son selling the wiring. You could look the auction up and email him to find out. Leon
John Cole's son is Roman his company is R.J.&L. AUTOMOTIVE FASTNERS & VINTAGE WIRING SUPPLIES
I talked to roman just yesterday and he is really gearing up on new dies for all types of spark plug terminals for all type of cars pre 1940's He also told me that he has a large selection of ignition wires 7mm-9mm.
Now alittle history on Roman, he is a manufcturer and supplier of automotive products and supplies Mac's, Dennis Carpenter,Birdhaven Supply and all the Ford catalog industry as well as GM & Chrysler. Also he made up all the tooling for John Cole's business in the 70's-90's as well as worked for him manufacturing the wire sets. His wife Kim made all the harnesses for 20 years now she helps out with her husband to expand in the business.
They are coming out with new products weekly from spark plug wire set, air breathers, ground straps,as well as new fasteners.
Roman also told me that just unloaded off the truck a braider to do harnesses and custom braiding.
He sure knows his stuff if you saw what he sells at Carlisle/Hershey you be amazed. He likes detail as well as teach cutomers how to do it.
Well, I hope something improves at Coles. The "show quality" harnesses I bought several years back when Mr Cole was alive were not of good quality at all, and were not even accurate as to where the wires came out of the harness. The looming material split at the joints too.
What I was told that Hilde at Cole's is in the process of selling the business. Her tooling is old and shot and she has no-one to repair it. She is doing all this stuff herself. Granted she has never done this stuff before (manufacturing) as well as knows anything about electricity in wires and how they perform. size, type, amps voltage..whatever you get is what you get.
Peter, Does Roman have a web site? I plugged the name that you gave for his company into my web brouser and can't seem to access anything.
I emailed Roman asking for a listing of a wire loom for my 1910 T. He replied that he sells the wire by the foot ( and apparently not completed looms.) Has any bought completed wire harnesses from him for a Model T?
I just got a new wiring harness and the quality is very good, nicely soldered, and great workmanship, from Sacramento Vintage Ford. Check out their products at this site.
And I did talk to Roman at Hershey, he mentioned that at some point he would be making looms, for now all he is making are the spark plug ignition wires, I got a set there too, nice ones.
I hope I aint related to the Cole selling bad parts.
Roman is from the original cole Family.., Hilde Cole is a re-marry into the family (not related by blood line just bad manufacturing)an Mack Jeffry is just a nice guy that just got into this thread.
Dan: Those are very nice looking spark plug wires. Could you post another picture, close up?
John Cole would not have sold you any wire harness. He was strickly wholesale. I was on a couple tours with him and I wanted a modified 1926 harness that had the blue yellow tracer wire all the way though the bundle with the generator wire to run a distributor. He would not talk to me about making one or would not make me one after talkng to me about it. I found another dealer that had a 1926 and he liked the idea. He got four of those, two for him and two for me. I'm still using mine and it was excellent.
John Cole sold retail for over 30years You requested a special harness. He only manufactures harnesses on the color that in his inventory..He won't buy special colored wires.
here some of Roman's wires 26-27 T's
Has anyone bothered to talk to Hilde about their problems? I think not. You do neither the vender or the hobby a service by just jumping on the forum and complaining. We have sold John Cole's wiring for years and have never had a complaint. Hilde is trying to keep the business afloat. Why not help her rather than beating a dead horse. I am sure she would appreciate your help. Most dealers appreciate constructive criticism so they can correct problems. We are fortunate to have so many dealers making parts for the hobby. If we continue to beat them over the head with our public criticism without giving them a chance to correct the issue they will all say to hell with it and go out of business. Then where will you get your parts? Case in point, Recent criticism of The Brassworks has prompted them to stop repairing old radiators. Thanks guys, you did the hobby a real service. We should all work together for the benefit of the hobby so we can all profit instead of shooting our toe off to proove how important our criticism is.
I second Glen's comments I have not had any experience with Coles wiring but have had experience with Brass Works in San Luis Obispo, CA.
These guys are top notch and build beautiful and accurate stuff! If the T'ers become a pain in the butt, then why not dump them?
Brassworks have enough business doing the impossible for the Classic folks ... Who appreciate a close if not perfect product! Ever heard of Rolls Royce?
Gail Rodda makes excellent spark plug and commutator wires. I believe Langs sells his products. Maybe other dealers do also.
Heya - ive got a full harness for sale on ebay - its gathering dust here and should go to a good home. Somebody buy it please!!!!
Ebay Item number 200413168405
Glen. you have to understand that Cole's has no resources for manufacturing. John was the toolmaker and the knowledge for the business. Hilde cannot repair their tooling problems and she has no-one doing it for her.Once the tooling is broke she SOL. She is planing on selling the business.
She should sell the business. T guys want it cheap yet perfect. How's she supposed to make a living trying to please T guys?
why should you T guys buy junk.. If you have to spend just $1.00 on a part you expect a top quality part especially if its made in the USA..
I got a very good quality wire harness from Lang's for my '23- but the wire colors did not match up perfectly with the wiring diagram. There were two of the same color, and none of one color. I suppose these are the inherent difficulties in producing specialized parts for a limited number of buyers.
when I buy reproduction parts for any of my antique cars I make sure that the quality is right up there...no excuses..or it goes back.It my money and I expect quality. ***Note some of these catalog companies who sell repro products need a course on quality control.They wouldn't know a good repro from a bad one,just because someone make it it should fit perfect..wrong.. they just sell. Basically you bought it you own it!!!
What I been seeing on this thread is alot of poor workmanship & I agree no excuses if you can't cut it why should everybody suffer. What happens if the harness burns up. Do They have product insurance to cover your loss??Probably not.. There are other manufactuers who make the same stuff Cole's make. Cheaper, better quality, quicker turn-around time etc.
Since you know so much about quality reproduction parts, then you should gear up for production, please everyone with your "up there" quality, and get rich!
I am in the reproduction business. We do steel stampings, vacuum forming, ground straps,ignition wires and short run maching for 1960+ cars/trucks We talk to the buyers all the time on what their needs are.. "voice of the customer"
Please accept my apology R.J., my response was directed to peter though I failed to include that.
There are a lot of folks who can tell a good part from junk, but that doesn't mean that we can make the parts better.
If I buy a watch and it can't keep time I can tell it is not a good watc, but I can't make a better one.
We have evry right to complain if we buy junk that is represented as good quality and it isn't.
enough said on this topic..the way I see it is if your not satified with the purchased product send it back. If the seller get alot of the products returned for the same reason he'll take action..
and Seth apology accepted not a problem..& be safe this holiday.rj
If I buy something and it's not "up to snuff", I let the seller know about it. I don't do it to be obnoxious, but I figure if they don't know that there is a problem, they can't fix it. Now, if they do know and do nothing about it, then everyone should know about it. Just makes good business sense to me. Dave
I fouund this on an earlier post in Oct 15,2009 Seem to me that this has been going on for years
By Larry Smith on Thursday, October 15, 2009 - 11:28 am:
There is an additional problem with the 'show quality' lh loom. Apparently Mr Cole didn't know how to operate his looming machine correctly, and where the mag wire comes out of the loom, and the headlight wires go forward, and the tailight wires go aft, all the looming material came apart. So much for show quality. I found some original Ford used looms for the whole car, and had them made correctly including the 12 gauge generator wire. My guy wove the Ford tags into the loom too, just like original.
I was looking at Cole's recent catalog and actually speaking its pretty bad after John Cole died. They put alot of marked "X's" or crossouts over the products they don't do anymore. I figure looking at their catalog they have eliminated upto 60% of their manufactured products????
RJ didn't mention it in his later posts, but someone said he should have contacted the vendor before coming on the forum and bashing them. According to his initial post, he did just that and got no satisfaction.
Poor quality is poor quality period, I don't care who makes it. The looms I bought were terrible, and it cost me almost three times the original cost to have them made right. I never complain about the cost. I've been told T people are cheap. Maybe they are, I don't know. I expect a quality product, regardless of price. And as far as the Brassworks, well, that is a whole other topic.
I was forced to go into the reproduction business myself, not because I wanted to, but the quality of products I wanted for my own car were so bad, I had no other choice. Me and my partner have had few complaints about the stuff we make. The reason is, the products we make are as good as original, or we don't make it.