I have been talking to some other T owners about hosting a Model T Driving School. Our goal is to try and promote the old car hobby by putting people behind the wheel and give them a new driving experience. Hopefully it would spark an interest that would lead some folks who would like to own a Model T or early car.
We have access to several cars and experienced drivers and were wondering if anyone has had experience hosting a Model T Driving School or if you know someone that has hosted one. Knowing what elements have made a driving school successful and enjoyable for the participants would be a big help.
Contact the Gilmoor Museum people..since they're doing that very thing. Unfortunately these days liability insurance is the biggest hurdle.
Mike Conrad - he can elaborate on this subject.
I think there would be liability issues, and a loss of insurance protection, if you charged for the lessons, and control issues if the lessons were free. An HCCA tour sometimes offers Model T driving lessons to women members, at no charge. I usually offer a Model T lesson as a fund raiser for one of our local environmental protection associations. I don't get paid, and I've cleared it with Hagerty so I'm covered. Other than than, I've often taught a neighbor to drive my T.
As a young boy he would wait for the one day a year The LeMay Family Collection was open to the Public.
At his invitation - I toured the collection last Fall - he met me in a Model T in the parking lot - drove me around the outside - then gave me a guided tour.
A few years ago Mike started the Model T Driving Program at The LeMay.
It is on my bucket list to return again - join the museum - take the driving class for the experience of being further immersed in The LeMay Family Collection.
My favorite museum is The MTFCA Museum in Richmond because of my association over the years.
The LeMay Family Collection is number two .....
Our local club often does driving schools. Our typical M.O. is to find a large, rather smooth field near where there is a public gathering. The local members then teach folks who drive around the field trying not to hit each other. We then offer pictures and certificates,(printed on the spot) that we charge for.
For years we did this once a year, now perhaps every third year.
That is the kind of information I am looking for. Do you give any classroom instruction before putting the students in the cars? Pictures and certificates are a great idea to acknowledge student participation.
We have a private location that has offered to host the driving school. I know there are liability issues but we are also talking to a potential sponsor that can help cover the cars and drivers.
FJ or Steve do you have contact information for Mike Conrad? I would like to talk him about their Model T school.
The AACA Museum is also offering a Model T Driving school. They charge something like $100 or slightly more and also give a certificate of completion. I understand that the Gilmor Museum is booked up way in advance too, showing that there's lots of interest for this.
This is really good for our Model T hobby, as many of those new T drivers get hooked, and the next thing is that they want to get their own Model T.
Every graduate of a T Driving school should receive along with their diploma a past issue of Vintage Ford and a club membership application.
If the guy (or lady) is interested enough to pay and attend a driving school, they are a prime recruit for membership.
Seems like an easy recruit. How can we reach out to the Gilmore and others offering the program?
Text me @ 260-804-6695 and I will reply with Mikeís cell number.
Alan, we just got in and went. The certificates/pictures were to help offset costs.
Jon, You're right & I'll pass it on....
My wife gave me the AACA museum Model T driving school for my birthday last year. She also took the class. We had a ball. They do a great job.
I sent a message regarding driving day for Model Tís. Not sure if it came through? Our club has been successful doing this for several years now.
My dad and I started the driving school at Gilmore abput 15 years ago. At the time we used his Fordor and my Touring. There were maybe 10 students. Since then the program has blossomed into a major educational program that goes most of the summer.There are now about 10 instructors, all volunteers. I personally know of seven Ts that have changed hands as a direct result of the class. The students learn how to drive the car then had to own one. The program is sold out well in advance and includes classroom instruction, a guided tour of the museum and driving time on a closed course. The museum has heavily invested in materials and cars. I can't say enough good things about it.
Looks like my previous message didnít work.
To expand on the subject of a Model T driving clinic, Here are a few points of what we do that may be of help to you, Alan, and others.
We hold this on a Sunday in an industrial area where there is very little traffic or public around. We select private property surrounding a warehouse. As our club holds an insurance policy, we are covered for liability as long as this is a club sanctioned event. As well, it is perfectly legal here for or a licensed driver to take instruction on licensed and insured Model T.
As we all know, driving a model T can prove to be quite a challenge for someone who has never done it before. During instruction, I always make a point to stress the importance of the brake lever. I refer to it as the ďOh S_it leverĒ I tell the new drivers that if they forget what they have been taught, just pull back on the lever and will bring the car out of gear and apply the rear brakes. This seems to work well. I also tell the other instructors to be ready to turn off the ignition switch in case of an emergency! So far, we have had no mishaps, touch wood!
Greg, I did not receive your message but thanks for adding to the conversation in this forum. The suggestion about the brake lever is a good one.
Eric, sounds like your T driving program is a big success and is very thorough. Have you developed a written curriculum to add to your classroom instruction? We would also like to encourage people to think about owing a T or early car and getting them behind the wheel seems to be a good way to do it.
Thanks for all of the input. A T driving school sounds like a great way to promote the hobby. Assuming everything comes together and we are able to get a driving school established I will report back on the results.