Delivered pre-T project today.

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Erik Barrett
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Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Erik Barrett » Tue May 21, 2019 2:46 am

I was recently asked to do some babbit work on a 1904 model B Ford. I had to replace the transmission output shaft support bearing and the babbited spherical socket for the torque tube ball. Both of these are in an aluminum subframe. The bearing itself was straightforward but required tooling to be made. The socket is to date the most challenging babbit project we have done. There is no way I have to machine the socket so I had to set up and pour it around the tube ball in perfect alignment with the bearing. Keeping the babbit contained in the mold was an issue. There were several attempts before success. Anyway, it went home today. It was a privilege to be asked to work on it. When it is back together it will be only one of six model B’s existing and the only one running. That will make it the earliest four cylinder Ford running. Pretty cool.
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Erik Barrett
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Erik Barrett » Tue May 21, 2019 2:48 am

My phone likes to put up pictures inverted on this site.


Wayne Sheldon
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Wayne Sheldon » Tue May 21, 2019 3:52 am

Really NEAT!
And the pictures look fine. No real reference points to suggest up or down.

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Rich Eagle
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Rich Eagle » Tue May 21, 2019 9:10 am

It's always a treat to see things like this. The projects we don't have can be as fun to see as the ones we do have.
I guess that's what dreams are made of.
Thanks
Rich
When did I do that?

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John Warren
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by John Warren » Tue May 21, 2019 9:30 am

Interesting looking part, I think I have seen that part at Bakersfield. Thanks for sharing. See you in Lincoln.
24-28 TA race car, 26 Canadian touring, 25 Roadster pickup, 14 Roadster, and 11AB Maxwell runabout
Keep it simple and keep a good junk pile if you want to invent something :P


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Erik Barrett
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Erik Barrett » Tue May 21, 2019 11:40 am

It was at Bakersfield. I picked it up there.


Trentb
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Trentb » Tue May 21, 2019 2:21 pm

My understanding is there are 7 surviving Model B Fords, one of which was a car without engine and transmission.

Total production of Model B Cars was about 500 units.

Respectfully submitted,

Trent Boggess

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FreighTer Jim
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Legendary Erik - what can I say ?

Post by FreighTer Jim » Tue May 21, 2019 3:04 pm

There is only one 1904 Model with all (4) known marks that is regarded
as the most original & complete example known to exist ...

Jack Grace - father of current Early Ford Registry BOD member
John Grace - transported it to Cecil Ralston in Texas many years ago
from where Cecil discovered it in the daylight basement of a modern subdivision home.

The owner had worked out a deal on the car to buy it for scrap value
from a building that was being demolished in New York City.

The car came out of a basement blacksmiths shop.

Actual assembled Model B car numbers are unknown.

There are incomplete sale records with many car serial numbers missing.

Model B cars were assembled upon payment in full at The Piquette Plant.

There is a theory about the Model B engine application in tractors.

It was one way to put the engines to good use that were not assembled
and installed in Model B cars that were never assembled.

I have a theory that far less than the 500 cars historically credited
were actually ever assembled and sold.

If brought successfully back to Life - it will be the only
1904 Model B sold back in that time to drive in anyone’s
memory who is living.

There is a Model B comprised of assembled parts much later
at The Henry Ford - it has had the engine run - there
is a short video on You Tube.

The Netherlands Model B that sold last June
ran when Bill Harrah owned it - Stu Laidlaw
was tasked with getting it up to acceptable
condition to enter New London to New Brighton
but Stu did not reach the point where it could
successfully participate.

Historically known as B-52 which is actually currently titled as B-51
this car is receiving minimal sympathetic restoration
from Legendary Kim Dobbins in Southern California.

The body has been correctly restored as practicable as
possible and painted by Legendary Ray Wells in the San Diego area.

In July - this 1904 Model B is tentatively scheduled
to journey to Legendary Dean Yoder in Iowa
for a shake down and final adjustment.

Then - in August of this year - if everything lines up
it will participate in the Early Ford Registry Run
and the New London to New Brighton Early Car Tour
and Saturday all day grueling 100 plus mile event.

Erik is a Godsend.

This car has had an unbelievable life.

It is a truly remarkable story of Survival - Friendship.

Without the passion of folks like Erik - Dean - Ray
and most importantly Kim - this would not have been possible.



FJ

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Rob
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Rob » Tue May 21, 2019 4:35 pm

Actually, Ford directors minutes show 250 Model B were initially ordered (components), with successfull sales the second 250 were ordered (FMC directors minutes). The Model B, as the Model C, were planned to be one year production models only. 500 Model B and about 800 Model C were produced, making both models among the rarest production Fords made. Considering profit of each model (B and C), it appears to me the Model B was the leading revenue producer of the two (based on 1906 Ford independent audit records). Of the 500 B produced, extrapolating from partial ledger sales data researched by Trent Boggess, my guess is about 400-440 Model B were sold during calendar year 1905. All things considered, this is a good production number for an upscale car. By comparison, most of the marquee makers produced less or similar numbers in 1905.

Interestingly, 200 Model B chassis were ordered for a British taxi consortium, however the production request was sent to FMC in early 1906, when the die was already cast to produce the next Ford models, K and N. Prior to that, 12 Model B were used on London streets as taxis.

This October FMC board meeting excerpt show the initial request by Ford branches for Model B and C. The initial estimate is $1255 to produce the B, with orders for 285 Model B:
IMG_4098.PNG
IMG_4099.PNG
IMG_4100.PNG
IMG_4101.PNG
Thank you for sharing this thread and photos of this rare survivor.
Last edited by Rob on Tue May 21, 2019 5:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.


Wayne Sheldon
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Wayne Sheldon » Tue May 21, 2019 4:41 pm

A truly wonderful story! Such a rare car, and historically significant. Almost incredible that so many well known model T and antique automobile people have their fingers in this pie.


Dropacent
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Dropacent » Tue May 21, 2019 7:31 pm

Lots of mis-information in the gospels according to FJ, but the big one that jumps out at me is about serial numbers. I can state with some authority that serial numbers of these early cars were on the flywheel, and were by the timing mark. I believe Ns were the first to have the number moved to the crankcase, and then to a raised boss on the crankcase. Perhaps Ks were also, being built at the same time, and I knew at one time but don’t remember now. Rob will know. I have had my hands on enough early engines to state that there are stamped numbers all over the parts, but they have nothing to do with the serial number of the car.
Say Horace and John get an order for 800 model C’s. They get a batch of maybe 25 or 50 crankcases in from the foundry. The parts get machined up in small batches, and the workers would apply stamped numbers to keep the important parts together. They may have 75 engine frames to assemble, same thing, each of the 3 main castings, and smaller parts might have matching numbers. These numbers have absolutely nothing to do with the serial number of the car.
Most (all?) states did not have car titles as we know them when these cars were first built. Later when titles were issued, an owner would look at the first number that jumped out to them, and use that.
When were the serial numbers issued to each car? Does anyone know? When they came off the sawhorses, when they left the yard, when they were purchased? Say they put 20 finished cars in a big room or out in the yard. The first one in was likely the last one out. Who knows? I doubt anyone does.
By the time they started producing the K and N, parts were getting interchangeable. Machining methods were vastly improving. BEFORE that time, these A,AC,B,C and F autos were made one at a time or in small batches. If parts were interchangeable, you were just a lucky duck!
Why can’t we just be pleased that another early ford is going to run and be on the road. Why the need for the onlyest, bestest, earliest, yada,yada. None of that is true so why the need to embellish?

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Henry K. Lee
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Henry K. Lee » Tue May 21, 2019 7:38 pm

Super Job Erik! Thanks for sharing.

Hank

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Tim Mosher

Post by FreighTer Jim » Tue May 21, 2019 8:51 pm

Tim Mosher,

There are (4) marks on the 1904 Model B referenced in this discussion.

Crankcase top
Inside of oil pan
Flywheel
Cylinder

All marks are 51 and 52.

This 1904 Model B is titled as B-51 but has been historically known as B-52.

The 1904 Model B standard for serial number identification is the engine serial number(s).

This “ matters “ because the other 1904 Model B examples are various degrees of
later assembled and/or restored cars using reproduction parts in some cases.

Consult John Grace of the Early Ford Registry for his opinion on this particular car.


FJ
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Rob
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Rob » Wed May 22, 2019 7:49 am

All great information. I think to keep from "hogging" in on this thread, another should be started regarding Model B. Ford's first four cylinder, enclosed drive car is an important part in the evolution of FMC, and only a year ahead of the Model T predecessor, the four cylinder Model N.

I had a heck of a time finding this after posting (this is an edit). i didn't realize it had been moved to "Off Topic," and never go there (OT). Personally, i'm not a fan of moving T history related threads to this off topic site, but evidently that's the way it is. I'll try to put a few other tidbits about Model B and FMC in another thread later.
Rob


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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by KimDobbins » Wed May 22, 2019 9:55 pm

A bit more on serial number locations. On B 51, the serial number is on the front face of the flywheel, not the outer edge. The timing marks are on the rear face. The serial number is also on the end of the crankshaft, on the top of the cylinder heads, 2 different places on the crankcase arms, on the bottom of the crankcase at the pan mating surface and finally on the intake manifold.
I’m still planing on having it running for NLNB. The body needed some repair and has a new coat of paint, RV is fixing up the coil box, lots of details left to do, but it’s coming together.


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Erik Barrett
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Re: Delivered pre-T project today.

Post by Erik Barrett » Thu May 23, 2019 2:01 am

Here’s a shot of the finish bored bearing.
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