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Model T: 1925

ENGINE SERIAL NUMBERS: 10,994,034 to 12,990,076 calendar year. 10,266,472 to 12,218,728 model year (August 1, 1924 to July 27, 1925, the start of the 1926 models).

MODEL YEAR DATES: August 1924 to August 1925.

BODY TYPES: Touring, Runabout, Coupe, Tudor and Fordor Sedans, Chassis and Trucks.

MAJOR MODEL YEAR FEATURES: Trucks were supplied with cabs and bodies beginning in 1924. Roadster-Pickup and Closed-Cab trucks in late 1925 (early calendar year 1925?, before “1926” models) production. Passenger cars were similar in style to the 1924 cars but more steel was used to replace the wood framework in the open car bodies.

COLORS: All cars were painted black, with black fenders.

UPHOLSTERY: Imitation leather in the open cars. The pattern was a stitched vertical pleat design on both seat bottoms and backs. Closed car upholstery was blue cloth.

FENDERS: Same as late 1924. In late 1925 models the rear fenders on the Coupe and Runabout were given larger splash aprons, reducing the gap between the body and fenders.

SPLASH APRON: Same as 1924. Near the end of production, aprons were “square”-shaped on the sedans, somewhat in the style of the 1926 models. This apron does not appear in the parts books, however, and it may not have been used on all production.

RUNNING BOARDS: Same as 1924.

HOOD: Same as 1924.

DASHBOARD (Firewall): Steel, same as 1924.

CHASSIS: Same as 1924 except that the brake quadrant was now held with two rivets instead of four. Painted black.

STEERING COLUMN ASSEMBLY: Pressed steel, black painted, quadrant, Zinc-plated spark and throttle levers, with flattened metal ends. Gear case was brass, zinc plated, one piece assembly. Wheel was 16” outside diameter, made of “Fordite” (synthetic material), and painted black. The wheel spider was pressed steel and painted black. With introduction of balloon tires, the gear ratio was increased to 5:1. The steering wheel diameter was increased to 17” in January 1925.

FRONT AXLE: Same as the 1924 cars.

REAR AXLE: Same as 1924.

DRIVESHAFT HOUSING: Same as 1924.

 

REAR RADIUS AND BRAKE RODS: Same as 1924.

WHEELS: Used 30 by 3 tires in front; 30 by 3-1/2 in the rear on non-demountable-equipped open cars. Front wheels used taper-roller (Timken) bearings except in the non-starter, non-demountable open cars. Hub caps were unchanged from 1924. Demountable-rim wheels were standard on closed cars, and optional on the open models; used 30 by 3-1/2 tires all around. 21” balloon tires and wheels were available as an option.

SPRINGS: Non-tapered, front and rear. “U” shaped shackles.

RADIATOR: Same as 1924. Nickel-plated shell was offered as an option late in production, before the 1926 models. A trim valence over the crank area was used as in the 1924 models.

ENGINE: Same as 1924. Starter was still optional on the open cars.

ENGINE PAN: “Four-dip” pan is standard.

OIL FILLER CAP: Same as 1924.

ENGINE CRANK: Same as 1924 one piece type with the rolled-in-place handle sleeve.

ENGINE FAN: Same as 1924.

MANIFOLDS: Same as 1924.

CARBURETORS: Kingston Model L4, Holley Model NH, or Ford F. The Holley Vaporizer was used on some later 1925 models (before the 1926 style cars). The choke rod with the integral carburetor adjustment was introduced late in the model year (before the 1926 models). These cars then used the U-joint type carburetor adjustment.

CARBURETOR STOVE ASSEMBLY: Same as 1924, but not used on Vaporizer-equipped cars.

MUFFLER: Pressed steel type with no tail pipe.

FUEL TANK: Elliptical, under the front seat. Mounting brackets clamped to the tank. Outlet was between the center and the right side, between the frame rails. The Sedans continued the square tank under the driver’s seat.

COIL BOX ASSEMBLY: Same as 1924.

TRANSMISSION: Three-pedal standard-design. Pedals were of the plain type. Transmission cover was cast iron. Tapered inspection door was held with six screws. The door was of pressed steel with an embossed pattern. “Quick-change” bands introduced in calendar 1925.

 

LAMPS: Magneto powered electric type on the non-starter cars, and six volt electric on the starter models. Black steel rims. Side and tail lamps were similar to 1917 on the non-starter cars. The oil tail lamp was turned sideways with a small red lens on the side (now the rear) and a large clear lens on the door to illuminate the license plate. Starter cars had a redesigned tail light which is mounted on the license plate bracket. This style of lamp was used through 1927.

HORN: Magneto powered electric on non-starter cars, but six volt on starter models.

WINDSHIELD: Same as 1924.

TOP: (Open cars). Same as 1924.

SPEEDOMETER: Not standard equipment.

TURTLE DECK: Same as 1924.

 

NOTES ON THE ROADSTER-PICKUP
By Trent Boggess

 

Factory records seem to indicate that the roadster-pickup was introduced in March of 1925 and that it was discontinued in April. Yet examples of seemingly original cars exist which were manufactured in May and later. The following information found at the Ford Archives should shed some light on what happened.

Careful reading of the factory letters leads me to believe that roadster-pickup production continued after May 1, 1925. One letter to the branches dated May 9, 1925 states: “When delivering roadster with pickup body equipped with demountable rims, it will be necessary to supply the extra rim. Our Engineering Dept. is at present designing a spare rim carrier to take care of this, but until such time as same is available you will supply extra rim only.”

But the real explanation of why this body style disappears from the factory rolls is, I think, found in a general letter dated May 1, 1925, on Excise Tax on Pick-Up Body.

“We are in receipt of a ruling from the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, with reference to runabouts sold with pickup bodies, in which the T Chassis and runabout body less deck (including in both cases freight differential, crating, tires, inner tubes, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof) are held to be subject to an excise tax of 5%, and the pickup body (including advance or fixed freight, crating, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof) billed as a separate item, is held to be exempt from tax since the sales price is not in excess of $200.

“Thereforee, in selling the runabout with pickup body, you will in the future bill the pick-up body (including advance or fixed freight, crating, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof) as a separate item on the sales order on which no tax will be computed, and compute tax at 5% on the sales price of the runabout less rear deck body (including advance or fixed freight, crating, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof).

“The present selling price of the pick-up body itself, you will understand, is $25.00 less discount, to which you will add advance or fixed freight differential, crating, tires, inner tubes, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof, in arriving at the amount which is exempt from tax in selling a runabout with pick-up body.

“The Pickup body sold through service body (including advance or fixed freight, crating, parts and accessories therefore sold on or in connection therewith or with the sale thereof) is exempt from tax since the sales price is not in excess of $200.00. Though you will hereafter bill the pick-up body as a separate item on the invoice you will report runabout with pick-up body as one unit on Form 3560-F.

“This applies to United States branches only.”

Whew! If you get through that (and believe it or not I did edit out some of it), the essence of it is they were going to bill roadster pickups as two separate items. Roadsters without decks and pickup bodies. This so as to reduce the tax liability on the vehicle. This may explain why the factory production records lists runabouts and it lists pick-up bodies, but the records do not list Roadster Pickups. Furthermore, since the cars were being sold as runabouts (less rear deck) after May 1, 1925 the metal garnish strips covering the sills below the rear deck would have been installed at the factory. Roadster pick-ups built after May 1 would have these garnish strips, while those built prior to May 1 did not.

 

1925 Changes

 

JAN 6

Acc. 1701, Model T Releases, Ford Archives

Specified use of 17" steering wheel on all chassis instead of those with 21 by 4.40 tires

 

FEB 2

Acc. 94, "Bolts, Nuts, etc." folder, Ford Archives

Letter from W.C. Klann to Martin and Howard:
"On Dec. 2nd, 1924 Mr. Martin and Mr.. Galamb O.K.'d building motors with no cotter keys in the bolts but using lock washers instead in the crankcase, transmission cover and cylinder block assembly only. Why not put this on the blue print? Please advise."

 

FEB 5

Letter from the Chicago Branch

We are rather interested in knowing about what proportion of prospects would be interested in Ford Cars, both open and closed, equipped with balloon tires. Say for instance, if an additional price of $25.00 for the balloon equipment, less of course, the regular discount to the dealer were charged, what proportion of cars do you suppose you would ask us to ship you so equipped if the company decided to furnish balloon tires?

It would probably depend largely on your answer whether or not balloon tire equipment would be used as standard equipment on part of our production.

 

FEB 23

Letter from the Chicago Branch

The following are the recommendations for air pressures to be used in 4.40/21" tires on Ford cars: Roadster, 25 pounds. Touring and Coupe, 30 pounds. Sedan types, 35 pounds. These pressures are for both front and rear.

 

MAR 4

Acc. 235, General Letters, Ford Archives

Pickup bed for Runabout announced.

 

MAR 6

Letter from Firestone Tire and Rubber Co., Ford Archives

The Ford Motor Company have (sic) approved the Balloon tire and furnish it as original equipment. This offers you an opportunity for increased sales and profit. New car sales --- changeovers from hundreds of present Ford owners, who will want to bring their cars up to date and enjoy the comfort, safety and economy of Balloon tires.

(The letter then recommends the tire pressures listed February 23.)

Firestone Balloons are furnished with combination Dill Dust Caps and, if properly tightened, will help to maintain constant pressure and minimize leakage. (The letter continues with a description of the tires and a suggested price of $64.80 for a set of four with wheels and a spare rim.)

 

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Ford Archives

Prices: Touring, $290. Runabout, $260. Tudor, $580. Fordor, $660. Coupe, $520. Chassis, $225. Runabout with pickup body, $281; with starter and demountable rims, $366. Starter for Touring and Runabout, $65. Demountables for touring and runabout, $20. (Electric equipment and demountables were standard equipment on the closed cars.)

 

MAR 17

Engine production records, Ford Archives

Began using only one bushing in the transmission brake drum.

 

APR 15

Letter from the Chicago Branch, with Detroit date line)

As a delivery unit to meet requirements for equipment lighter than that of the ton truck, The Ford Motor Company has just added a pick-up body to its commercial car line.

The new body is designed for use on the Ford Runabout, taking the place of the rear deck, and is well adapted to all kinds of light hauling and quick delivery. The Runabout seat affords comfortable riding for the driver and there is ample room for another passenger. Full protection against inclement weather is provided by the top and side curtains.

The new body is of all steel construction and sturdily built. It is 3 feet, 4-3/4 inches wide and 4 feet, 8 inches long. Sides are thirteen inches deep to the flare, so that loading space is sufficient to meet all demands of light delivery. The end gate is the same as that on the express type body of the ton truck and when partially lowered is securely held in place by chains.

 

APR 9

Acc. 235, General Letters, Ford Archives

Closed cab for trucks announced.

 

APR 17

Ford Factory letter

The 250,000th Ford left the final assembly line in Manchester, England. English Fords are about 90% British material. "All cylinder blocks are cast and machined in the plant at Cork, Ireland, which operates under the name of Henry Ford & Son, Ltd."

 

APR 29

Ford Factory letter

A closed cab is the latest equipment offered by the Ford Motor Company for the Ford ton truck. The new cab, which is all-steel, affords protection for the driver and is adaptable for use with standard Ford truck bodies, both the express and the stake types.

Doors of the cab are exceptionally wide and the plate glass windows in the doors may be lowered. The upper portion of the windshield swings either in or out so as to suit ventilation requirements. The seat accommodates three persons comfortably and there are special springs in both the seat and back cushions. Panels in the back of the cab may be easily removed to permit access to the truck body.

A combined priming and carburetor adjusting rod is now standard on all Ford closed cars, and is being furnished without extra cost. Where formerly the driver primed from the instrument board and adjusted the carburetor from the dash beneath, both operations may now be performed from the same accessory on the instrument board.

Ford owners who desire to "dress up" their cars with nickel-plated radiator shells and head lamp doors may now secure these accessories from Ford dealers. This equipment is being supplied by the Ford Motor Company to authorized dealers throughout the country.

 

APR 30

Factory Letter

Windshield wing assemblies announced at $7.50 pair. Nickel plated radiator shell, apron and headlamp rims offered. T-3947D shell at $5.00. T-3977B apron, $.75. T-6575BRX headlamp rim, less lens, $1.00. All at 40% discount to the dealer.

 

MAY 2

Letter from the Chicago Branch

Leather inner axle oil seal announced. Part # T-198AR, it sold for 30 cents a pair. Instructions were given on its installation, and the importance of keeping the bearing well greased is stressed.

 

MAY 14

Factory Letter

Leather "Dope Washers" announced. These were the leather grease seals that go inside the outer rear wheel bearings. P/N T-198AR or cars, TT-198AR for trucks.

NATURAL WOOD WHEELS announced. T-291-1 front wheel, balloon, with hub and less rim, at $5.50 each. T-2815G rear wheel, balloon, with hub and less rim, at $5.50 each. These were sold as a set to the dealer for $13.20. They were to be sold to the customer on an exchange basis (for black balloon wheels) for $15.00. Ford would allow a credit of $6.00 for the returned set.

 

JUN 1

Letter from the Chicago Branch

Transmission bands with the detachable ear on all production was noted. The letter gave instructions on the removal and installation, and notes that it was necessary to cut off approximately 1-1/2" of the clutch pedal shaft, as well as installing a new transmission band adjusting screw extension T-1525-R when these bands were used on earlier (non-detachable bands) transmissions. (2-1/2" to be cut off is specified in a letter of July 28.)

 

JUL 7

Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

Ford drawing showing an arrangement with which the new 11" rear brakes could be operated from a separate foot pedal. Four pedals! Never used, of course.

 

JUL 8

Letter from the Chicago Branch

"We have discontinued marking high-speed trucks with white paint on the axle housing cap, and are now marking them by stamping "H.S." with dies on top of the worm housing."

 

JUL 27

Engine production records, Ford Archives

Last old style engine (12,218,728) built at 5:51 P.M. and new (1926) type engines began on the third shift.

 

JUL 28

Letter from Chicago Branch

Notes that they have found it necessary to cut 2-1/2" off the clutch pedal shaft (T3427) when installing quick-change bands in earlier cars. (Was 1-1/2")

 

AUG 22

Letter from Chicago Branch

Announcement of the "improved Ford car," stating that it would be first advertised to the public in the afternoon papers August 26, and the morning papers on August 27, with weekly publications the following week. The cars were not to be displayed before the 26th. The letter stressed that the term "New Ford" should not be used; rather "Improved Changes in Body and Chassis," or "Improved Ford Cars."

 

AUG 26

The official news release on the "Improved Fords."

Changes are Most Pronounced --- Bodies Longer, Lower and All-Steel.

Goes to Colors in Closed cars. Many Other Refinements Made --- Brakes are Larger, More Powerful.

Body changes and chassis refinements more pronounced than any made since the adoption of the Model T chassis were announced here today by the Ford Motor Company. There will be no advance in price, it also was stated.

Outstanding features of the improvements in both open and enclosed types are lower, all-steel bodies on a lowered chassis, complete new design in most body types, a change from black in color in closed cars, larger, lower fenders, newly designed seats and larger, more powerful brakes.

Longer lines, effected through higher radiator and redesigned cowl and bodies are apparent in all the improved Ford cars, but are especially pronounced in the open types. Wide crown fenders hung close to the wheels contribute to the general effect of lowness and smartness.

While Runabout and Touring Car remain in black, the closed bodies are finished in harmonic color schemes, enhanced by nickel radiators. The Coupe and Tudor bodies are finished in deep channel green while the Fordor is rich Windsor Maroon.

Greater comfort is provided for driver and passengers in both open and closed cars by larger compartments, more deeply cushioned seats and greater leg room.

Many new conveniences are also incorporated in the improved cars. In the Runabout, Touring Car, Coupe and Tudor, the gasoline tank is under the cowl and filled through an ingeniously located filler cap completely hidden from sight by a cover similar in appearance to a cowl ventilator. One-piece windshield and narrowed pillars in the Tudor and Coupe offer the driver greatly increased visibility and improved ventilation.

Driving comfort is materially increased by lower seats, scientifically improved back rests and lowered steering wheel. Brake and clutch pedals are wider and more conveniently spaced.

Four doors are now provided on the Touring Car and two on the Runabout permitting the driver to take his place from the left side of the car. Curtains, held secure by rods, open with the doors.

Most important in the mechanical changes are the improved brakes. The transmission brake drum and bands have been considerably increased in size which gives the foot brake softer and more positive action as well as longer life. The rear wheel brake drums are larger and the brake is of self energizing type.

Cord tires are now standard equipment on all Ford cars.

At the main offices of the company it was stated today that production of the new line is under way in all assembly plants of the company throughout the country and the improved cars are being sent to dealers for showing.

 

AUG 30

Acc. 235, General letter from Detroit, Ford Archives

Edsel B. Ford, president of the Ford Motor Company, in a statement issued yesterday following the announcement of improved Ford bodies and chassis refinements, said:

"We do not want the impression to prevail that we are producing new Ford Cars.

"Bodies for Ford cars have been materially improved but the Model T chassis remains unchanged except for a lowering of the frame and a few other important changes. Bodies, in four types, have been completely redesigned and built lower to contribute to better appearance, driving and riding comfort and roadability of the cars.

"Body improvements and chassis refinements at this time are more pronounced than at any previous time since the adoption of the Model T chassis. They are, however, entirely in accordance with the policy of the Ford Motor Company to give the public the benefit of every improvement which we find practical for Ford cars.

"By preserving the design of the Model T chassis, the company is safeguarding continued good service for owners of approximately 9,000,000 Ford cars and trucks now in use throughout the country as well as for new car purchasers."

 

SEP 11

News release from Detroit

Beauty is Keynote of Longer, lower Bodies --- Many New Conveniences.

It is no exaggeration to say that Ford dealer show rooms in (name of city) were literally packed with people during the past week, all eager to see the new Ford cars which went on display for the first time (name day).

There were exclamations of surprise from everyone and enthusiastic comments of all kinds were heard everywhere the cars were exhibited whether in show rooms or on the streets.

The cars are most attractive. Graceful lines have been effected through the combination of lower bodies on a lowered chassis frame. Through unnumerable (sic) changes there has been blended into one whole an exceptionally pleasing line of cars. From the higher radiator, rising into the body lines, on back to the improved spare tire carrier at the rear and the tail light and license bracket on the fender, every car is distinctive.

Those desiring a two passenger car will find it hard to choose between the Coupe and the Runabout. Both these types have particularly good lines. The rear deck of each has been considerably enlarged, and is now full width with increased luggage carrying capacity.

The Touring car, most popular of all Ford cars, has a considerably longer appearance and seats are wider.

The Tudor Sedan, likewise has been redesigned not only in lines, but in interior arrangement and seating comfort, while the Fordor has many charms for those who prefer a car of this type.

Examination of the cars reveal many other conveniences and refinements which provide improved braking facilities, permit quicker adjustments and contribute in many ways to easier driving, all of which can be better appreciated by personal examination than by any description.

While they embody features which give them new beauty, riding and driving comfort, the improved Fords are built on the same Model T chassis which is the foundation of the dependable and economical performance of more than 9,000,000 Ford cars now in service all over the world.

 

SEP 15

Acc. 94, Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

Production of Touring and Roadster top boots and gypsy curtains begins.

 

OCT 7

Acc. 94, Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

Production of windshield wings begins.

 

OCT 26

Engine production records, Ford Archives

Began using bolts on the valve doors. (A letter of June 5, 1919, indicated this change was made in 1919. Apparently both bolts and studs had been used during the early 1920's.)

 

NOV 16

Engine production records, Ford Archives

100% of production now used the support straps at the rear of the engine block.

 

DEC 12

Acc. 94. Walter Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

"Motor number was first placed on frame side member R.H. on Dec. 12, 1925. Motor No. 12,861,044. Information obtained from Mr. Burns, Final Assy., Highland Park."

 

DEC 14

Acc. 94, Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

Production of snubbers (shock absorbers) begins.

 

DEC 31

Acc. 94, Fishleigh files, Ford Archives

Production of automatic windshield wiper begins.

 

DEC 31

Letter from the Chicago Branch

The letter is regarding the importance of adjusting the rear wheel brakes, and gives the following procedure:

"To properly adjust the brakes, set the hand brake lever in the fourth notch (high gear) from the front of the quadrant. Make sure that brake drums are contracted. Then adjust the clevis on end of rod until hole in clevis lines up with hole in controller shaft. Insert the pin through the hole. Then turn the rear wheels to ascertain whether the brakes are dragging on the drum. If both wheels run free, pull the hand brake lever back to the sixth notch of quadrant. Then try wheels again. Brakes should just start holding at this point. Now the brakes are properly adjusted. Insert cotter keys in the end of the clevis pin."

 

NOTES:

The following information regarding the change to the 1926 body style was submitted by Trent Boggess, and comes from the Ford Archives:

William F. Pioch's Reminiscences:
"In this particular model change, it was mostly in the styling of the car and not in the engineering of the motor and chassis. That car was brought out mainly to try and keep the sales built up an make the Model T look a little more like our competitor's cars at that time, who were catching up with us.

"We called this the Australian job. It was supposed to throw off the public. This car was tested out on the highway. We had no test tracks then. For general public information, I think the people believed the Australian job was intended for Australia until the car was shown in the sales room. Of course, a lot of people around Detroit knew it was intended for the market here.

"We worked on this Australian job for about six or seven months before it went into production. Joe Galamb designed the body for this. It had the gas tank in the hood with the filler in the center of it. That was really the first streamlined job at that time. It was the last of the Model T, about 1925 or 1926."