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Ford primer color

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:32 pm
by Humblej
What color primer did ford use during the black car era? Same question for 26-27 proxilyn period?

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:51 pm
by Original Smith
Wrong! Black Japan was called dipping enamel, and was only used on smaller parts like the fenders, running boards, hoods, and splash shields.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 7:23 pm
by Walter Higgins
Some insight to this is offered in, "Ford Methods and the Ford Shops, 1915. A bit earlier than you're asking about but likely still the same by the early black era:

"Here a workman wearing a mask and equipped with a giant atomizer, behind which there is a pressure of 80 pounds per square inch, gives the body a through spraying with a brown body metal primer which dries very rapidly."

.... and then:

"After being sanded, it is ready for its second priming; a blue-black coat which is "flowed on" in the following manner:"

From there it speaks of going on to its first color varnish.

The fenders, aprons, and hood are a different dipping process that don't mention a primer.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 8:05 pm
by CudaMan
I have an original copy of the book mentioned by Walter and can vouch for the accuracy of his quotes from the book. :)

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 9:56 pm
by TRDxB2
I did a search on past Forum Discussion on this subject. This one is quite extensive but I copied a bit of it to answer the initial question about "primer color" up to 1925. I'm still looking to answer the second part of he question for:1926/27 .
By Trent Boggess
"A large number of different paints were used on Model T's during the black era. Over thirty different Ford Motor Company specifications for black paint have been identified. (See Appendix A for a list of these paints.) They vary in terms of their chemical composition, the amount of thinners used, the pigments used and in several other respects. For the purposes of discussion, all of these paints can be divided into two categories: oven drying paints and air drying paints. Oven drying paints were used on all-metal parts that could withstand the high temperatures of the baking ovens, such as fenders, hoods and similar parts. Air drying paints were used on dashes and bodies, where the wood contained in these parts would not withstand the high temperatures required to bake the oven drying paints.

The basic oven drying paint for the Model T was what historical sources call “Japan Black”. Why the term “Japan Black” was used to describe the paint is somewhat obscure. Before 1900 “Japanning” was known as a particular type of varnishing that was practiced by the Japanese. It was unique in that after the application of each coat of color varnish, the object was placed in an oven or stove and baked at as high a temperature as possible without damaging the object. To an extent, painting Model T fenders, hoods, and other all metal parts resembles “Japanning” in that after the film of paint was applied the part was baked for up to an hour at a temperature of about 400 degrees.

The term “japan” has second connotation in the painting industry. A particular combination of chemical compounds is known as “Japan Dryers”. When added to vegetable drying oils, as described previously, they reduce the time it takes for the paint to dry. Since “Japan Dryers” were used in making some Model T paints, this too may partly account for the use of the term.

Ford used two japan black paints. The “First Coat Black Elastic Japan” was given the factory specification number F-101 (M-101 after March 15, 1922) and F-102 (M-102 after March 15, 1922) was the factory specification number for “Finish Coat Elastic Black Japan”. Both paints were very similar in composition. They consisted of about 10% linseed oil and dryers (lead and iron dryers were popular in oven baked paints), 55% thinners (mineral spirits or petroleum naphtha), and 25 - 35% Asphaltum. F-101 also contained 1 - 3% carbon black as a pigment, while the finish coat, F-102 contained none"

Towards the end of the thread there is an extensive list of paints & related primers
List of the factory paints used by the Ford Motor Company: 1913 - 1925

Ford # Name Purpose Type
F-101 First Coat Black Elastic Japan Prime coat on Fenders, hoods, etc. Oven
F-102 Second Coat Black Elastic Japan Finish Coat on Fenders, hoods, etc. Oven
F-105 First Coat Brushing Black Japan Front Axles Oven
F-106 Second Coat Brushing Black Japan Front Axles Oven
F-108 First Coat Black Wheel Surfacer Wheels Air
F-111 Red Body Prime Bodies Air
M-111 Quick Drying Black Touch Up General Purpose Repair Work Air
M-114 First Coat Low Bake Enamel Touring and Roadster Bodies Force Dry
M-115 Second Coat Low Bake Enamel Touring and Roadster Bodies Force Dry
M-117 Carburetor Lacquer (Black) Carburetors Air
M-121 Repair Enamel (Low Bake) Repair low bake enamel finishes Force Dry
F-122 Radiator Black Radiators Air
M-124 Empire Gray Metal Primer Touring and Roadster Bodies Force Dry
M-125 Empire Gray Color Varnish Touring and Roadster Bodies Force D

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 8:03 am
by Gonenorth
I have an early '26 Tudor that was a December 1925 production unit. The car went through a couple really bad "restorations" on the exterior, but not on the interior (other than seat upholstery). After removing the interior panels I discovered the car has the original rack numbers chalked on the inside of the panels. By the looks of it, if it could be considered a primer it is sort of a flat black. Underneath it is clean metal. Only looks like one coat. After digging through the layers of "restoration" paint on the exterior, I found a deep blue/black primer paint next to the metal. By looking at the layers of paint I determined that the car was black, not the advertised Deep Channel Green.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 8:25 am
by RustyFords
Humblej wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:32 pm
What color primer did ford use during the black car era?
My 24 has what I'm fairly certain is worn original paint on every panel. Where the black paint is completely worn off, there is a reddish-brown primer underneath.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 12:14 pm
by TRDxB2
Trent Boggess' article notes that different paints, primers and painting techniques were used on different parts. So there was not one answer as to "what primer was used". "F-111 Red Body Prime Bodies Air" was one, and Don may have verified that was used on the body of his car.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 1:18 pm
by Humblej
Thank you all, just what I wanted. Anyone have anything more about primer for proxylin please post.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 1:34 pm
by John kuehn
For clarification purposes most information about Fords methods for painting T’s and the type of paints used can be found in the Encyclopedia for Model T’s that on the MFTCA website.
Click on the painting section and you can see F-111 red prime was used on the bodies along with several other paints.
There is a lot of information about Model T ‘s that can be found there.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:37 am
by Steve Jelf
Regardless of what Ford used on various parts, for painted wheel rims on a black era car I would use a primerless black paint or black primer. A lighter colored primer will make the inevitable tire mounting dings and scratches mighty glaring. Demountables, of course, are galvanized.

Re: Ford primer color

Posted: Sun Sep 22, 2019 6:38 pm
by Scott_Conger
When I rewooded my '23 roadster, what appears as 100% rust, was really bare primer, with rust pitting pushing through. This picture is of an interior back panel (in brown primer) and a splash of black paint. This brown primer came off as heavy cream when hit with paint stripper. It took lots of stripper and much more time than listed on the stripper's label to get it to come off. It was TOUGH!

The black on the mounting tab is burned paint where I had to work to remove the original nuts/bolts.

Here's a picture of "primed-only" metal with an original black "drip"