Did the non-starter cars have a dashboard? If so, what was there where the ignition switch-ammeter would be? I know there are later coil boxes with switches and without so I assume the ones w/ switches are for non-starter cars. I'm about to be at a point where I need to buy a coil box. I'm not going to have a starter, for now, but may put one on someday. I don't have a body yet but was thinking about buing a cowl section for now. I guess I could get the switch/ ammeter and the switchless box and switch it to on, then hand crank it. I don't know about all the wiring, my 14 only has 9 wires.
There were blanking plates where the ammeter went. Once in a rare while you will see one maybe at a swap meet.
I believe that cars came with a dash in 21. The ones without starting equipment had a blank out plate with the dimmer resistance coil for the head light mount on the reverse side.
So starter or no, I should get the box without the switch because the dash mounted switch controls it? Those are easier to find and less expensive so that's even better.
Yes, the dash-mounted switch either sends magneto AC or battery DC to the one power terminal on the non-switch box. That power terminal connects to the rail in the bottom of the box and the metal tangs energize the coils through the bottom solder button on the coils.
I'll send you the wiring diagram for the non-starter cars since I can't post it here.
Since you are not trying to recreate a 1914 correct car, then the box without the switch is fine. The starter is only controlled by the starter switch on the floor under your left foot. The switch on the dash has nothing to do with the starter.
Like Seth said, the switch on the dash determines whether you are running on battery or magneto. It also controls your headlights.
Look at the dash on the trucks on e-bay. They usually do not have a dash, but attach the switch in some way to the firewall. YOu can always add a dash later and move the switch.
I highly recommend you spend the $50 and get Bruce McCalley's Model T Comprehensive Encyclopedia. You are talking 3,000 pages of information regarding all the parts on the car, and what parts were on what year car.
I don't think Ford started putting dashes on non-starter cars until 1923. The non-starter cars still had the switch on the coilbox, and the combination horn/light switch on the steering column.
I stand corrected. I checked the book, reads as dashboard was standard in the 23 model. 1919 to 22 models, reads that the non starter models still had switch on the coil box. I would venture a guess that cars before that, without starter equipment, got a dashboard when a speedometer was added (as Ford was not supplying speedometers would be aftermarket).
Mel Millers T book says that Ford installed starters as optional equipment beginning in 1919 and came with a dash that had the ampmeter/switch. I do know of a 1918 T that was a non/starter car that had the later flywheel and trans. cover installed to facillate the use of a starter. This car of course didnt have a dash so the owner left it like it was. I bet there were plenty of T's that were set up this way. People probably got tired of cranking.