VIN Identification Help

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2018: VIN Identification Help
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Sporin on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 02:27 pm:

Hello,
Father passed and I'm attempting to identify the number stamped on the engine of his 1928 Model A Roadster. Any assistance in this matter is greatly appreciated!
RF45II



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie Gagel, Orange,Ct on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 03:49 pm:

Replacement block?
Also a star is stamped before, and after.
*RFII*


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Kaminar on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 04:00 pm:

Neil,

Here is a site that might help. You should search for a Model A forum. We Model T owners are not much help when it comes to modern cars like the Model A.

http://www.fordgarage.com/pages/ABenginenumbers.htm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 07:45 pm:

That is a restamp. No checking of any A site will help. The A's were stamped *A1234567* or *AA1234567* for some years of the AA truck for example. They did not have any number/letter combination like what is shown re the RF45II. From the surface of the number pad, that looks to be a replacement block that would not have had a number stamped on it till the customer bought it. The A blocks had an as cast number pad surface, ruff like the rest of the block. If it had been ground off more then likely it would be smooth. That could be a rebuilders or state issued number.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By gene french on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 08:41 pm:

Neil:
as Mark has stated ...the Ford issued vin had an A prefix I have seen several other variations ...some were state issued numbers and some were engines used in industrial applications one common example here in Colorado is a G number that was an original engine in a Gleaner combine ...your engine may be a state issued registration number on a replacement block or an engine from some industrial application always an optimist...gene french


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan Hatch on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 09:16 pm:

He should look on the other side for a diamond. That will tell if it was combine engine. Dan


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 12:20 am:

I was just repeating the tale of the "back door" model T engines on another thread I think yesterday. The same thing was done with model A, model B, and model C engines. I knew a model A parts house years ago that bought about a hundred warehouse tractors with A, B, and C motors in them. I don't recall what the serial numbers were on them, I know a few had been replaced at some point in their past with standard model A engines, therefore having standard serial numbers. Most had special numbers provided by the company that manufactured the warehouse tractors. It was common for industrial users of "backdoor" engines to provide a serial number including usually two or three letters followed by a serial number. Most such users of engines built anywhere from a few to a few hundred industrial units. So two letters, followed by three numbers is a common serial number pattern for them. Additional indicators were also common, including stars and Roman numerals.
It would sure be interesting if someone could compile a list of some of those companies and the serial number patterns they used. But other than a few isolated cases, I have never seen such a list. Farming equipment, industrial equipment, and boat motors were common uses.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Sporin on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 02:01 am:

Input mucho appreciated! Crazy stuff, will expand search to other types of motors and see if I can't at least identify the sonofagun...


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Matthiesen on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 02:06 am:

To Neil Sporin : The following info should help you out regarding your Model A.

Model A Ford Club of America =
http://www.mafca.com/

MAFCA has a Facebook link to the Model A forum

ALSO

Model A Restorers Club =
http://model-a-ford.org

Model A Restorers Club = http://model-aford.org

Model A engines got changed from car to car and replaced just like Model T engines did in order to keep the car running. I think the RF in your engine means, Richmond Facility, the new Richmond California Ford plant that opened in late 1931. It is known that the Long Beach Ca plant that opened in 1930 assembled A engines that had there own engine serial sequence numbers so Ford could track them if problems came up. I remember reading in some MAFCA or MARC post a long time ago something about the new Richmond Facility assembling Model A engines at some point after it first opened. I will check the Ford Factories book that I have that has some pictures of the inside of Richmond making 1931 Model A when opened.
There is good news, because you live in Monterey Ca and are close the Richmond Ford Facility still stands as a historical place and you cane go see it. Ford moved from Richmond to Milpitas Ca in the 1955, but the Richmond building was saved. Here is a link to history of the Richmond Ford Facility.
http://www.fordmotorhistory.com/factories/richmond/index.php


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Sporin on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 02:39 am:

Too cool , thanks Kevin. Yup, I was just reading somewhere else that the RF related it to the Richmond facility, and the contributor said that all the RF blocks he had seen were Diamond blocks. Possibly a model B then?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Kaminar on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 07:19 am:

Model B had a different water pump and therefore a different head. If the head is original to the block and the block is a B it will be different than an A. If I remember correctly the B head had three bolt holes for the water pump, but it has been years since I last had a B.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tom Miller, mostly in Dearborn on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 07:28 am:

The Model B block also has a boss for a fuel pump since the '32 Ford did not have a gravity fuel system.

I also notice the number pad appears to be as-cast indicating this number is the original stamping. The stars also appear to be original Ford. I don't think they were commonly used when repair shops re-stamped numbers.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Matthiesen on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - 01:48 pm:

Neil, As has been said by others, the Model B block is different from the Model A block. The Model A block used a oil return pipe from the valve chamber oil galley that gravity feeds the main bearings, to return extra oil to the crankcase via a roundish opening lower on the block. I have a Model A friend that has a Model A block that is a RF numbered block in the 8xxx range.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Neil Sporin on Friday, July 06, 2018 - 12:03 am:

Hello All,
Ok so it appears that, through some research:
- It Is a diamond engine
- The code on the opposite side of "H 25" indicates a foundry date of August 2nd, 1935
- It has the oil return tube and the exhaust is a 45 degree drop indicating a Model A engine.

Research also indicates that if the diamond block was stamped with a serial number(like the image above), then it was a completed engine and transmission assembly, not just a service block.

http://www.fordgarage.com/pages/diamondblock.htm

Lastly, I have found where an "R" indicates the Richmond facility but I have yet to find "RF". Some write that other locations used an "F" to indicate right hand drive?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Matthiesen on Friday, July 06, 2018 - 12:31 am:

Thanks Neil for the update on your Model A engine.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By wayne tomlins on Friday, July 06, 2018 - 12:38 am:

Some export blocks were stamped AF which usually was for a RHD, or the small bore engines available in Europe.
Your engine, as you now realise, is a post production one from Richmond, Cal.
Cheers. Wayne in NZ.


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