Hello, I am getting my 1911 touring ready for the 2018 season. Ron P. has rebuilt the coils, and I want to install new wiring and timer to make it as reliable as I can. The period-correct wiring kit is on order, but has no instructions (I'm told). I cannot find a wiring diagram for the early brass cars. Every document I have found is for later cars, and nothing seems to show how the coils, battery, magneto, and timer all connect together. I bought the MTFCA electrical book, and it's not in there, either! Can someone please point me in the right direction? I should mention that I am an electrical idiot, and I will need a real clear picture of how things should be hooked up.
Here is a diagram out of a reprint of the 1917 book, "The Model T Ford Car, It's Construction, Operation, and Repair" by Victor Page:
It isn't obvious in the picture, but the shortest spark plug wire in the set goes to the third plug from the front.
This link takes you to a thread that talks about which end of the timer harness goes to the timer.
Of course, for 1911 you can skip the part about the lights.
And if you intend to use a battery:
(Message edited by steve_jelf_parkerfield_ks on January 07, 2018)
Perfect, thanks guys! Bill
The critical point to be careful of the wiring at the timer. That is where the 1-2-4-3 firing order is established. The Coilbox connections are in order: 1-2-3-4
Bill, one critical mistake to avoid; the placement of the magneto and battery wires. I'm not sure about the 1911, but the 1909/10 had the wiring opposite of what all the later T's had concerning the placement of the battery and magneto. On the above diagrams, the magneto wire is connected to the post labeled magneto, which is on the right side looking into the engine compartment. However, on the early brass cars this is the battery wire location and the magneto wire gets hooked up to the left side looking into the engine compartment - opposite of what you see on the above diagrams. One way to tell for sure on your 1911; look at the switch plate on your magneto coil box. If the switch is marked "Mag" on the right and "battery" is on the left then I am correct. If it's marked "battery" on the right then it's like the photos above. In other words, the coil box will tell you which way the wires should attach. If you notice on my 1910 JB coilbox, it has the mag on the right side, which is opposite of all later T's.
Once again, thanks! The magneto goes to the right side post (facing the car from the front) on my car. Great info. I assume reversing the batt-mag positions will discharge the magnets per Steve's simple battery charger article? Regarding that info, does such a charging system automatically limit itself to avoid over charging the battery? What function does the 1156 bulb serve, and is there another component that would serve but not light up?
The early (09-10) Kingston boxes were wired the same as the '10 JBs. The mag post is on the passenger side in the engine compartment. By 1911 all coilboxes were wired the same as the later types. A lot of early cars zapped their mags when their restorers fired them up after wiring them in the conventional (later) way.
I have the drawing of the 1910 JB coilbox which clearly shows this odd wiring. It's interesting in that it was drawn by Jacobson-Brandow for Ford rather than Ford doing the drawing. It's one of the very few surviving drawings of early coil parts. Almost of the drawings were destroyed and their part numbers were recycled onto new electrical parts when the starters and generators came out in 1919.