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Model T: 1916

ENGINE SERIAL NUMBERS:1,028,314 to 1,614,516 calendar year. 856,514 to 1,362,813 approx. fiscal and model year.

MODEL YEAR DATES: August 1, 1915 to July 31, 1916.

BODY TYPES: Touring, Runabout, Sedan, Coupelet, Town Car and Chassis.

MAJOR MODEL YEAR FEATURES: Similar to 1915. Hood was steel with louvers on the side panels. Brass trim on lamps was discontinued. The new all-black style (1917 models) appeared in August 1916 but these were 1917 models.
Transmission cover was now cast iron, replacing the aluminum type used earlier, and with the smooth-surfaced pedals.
The Sedan, while similar in appearance to the 1915, was redesigned using steel panels and standard fenders and splash aprons. In addition, the gasoline tank was moved to a position under the driver’s seat. The Coupelet had a collapsible top almost identical to the 1915 except for the addition of small windows in the rear quarter panels. The turtle deck door was now on the top surface.

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

UPHOLSTERY: Imitation leather in the open cars. The pattern was a stitched diamond on the seat bottoms, and vertical pleats on the seat backs. Sedan upholstery was a gray and white striped pattern, less ornate than the 1915’s. The Town Car front seat was now imitation leather. The Coupelet was trimmed in green fabric and lace; the Town Car in blue fabric and lace.

FENDERS: Front: Continued the style of the 1915 cars.

SPLASH APRON: Same as in 1915. Fenders and aprons were painted black.

RUNNING BOARDS: Same as 1915.

HOOD: Steel, in same pattern as 1915. Hold down clamps have two “ears” and were of forged steel. Handles were forged steel.

DASHBOARD (Firewall): Wood, fitted inside the front cowl, hidden by the metal hood former.

CHASSIS: Same as 1915. Painted black.

STEERING COLUMN ASSEMBLY: Pressed steel, brass-plated, quadrant, Brass-plated spark and throttle levers, with flattened metal ends, appear to have been used, although black painted rods have been seen. Gear case was brass, one piece assembly. Wheel was 15’’ outside diameter, wood, and painted black. The wheel spider was iron and painted black. Horn button was located on top surface, below the steering wheel.

FRONT AXLE: Same as the 1915 cars. Brass oilers are used only on the spring shackles.

REAR AXLE: Same as 1915. Reinforcing ribs on the outside of the brake backing plates began to appear.

DRIVESHAFT HOUSING: Pinion bearing spool was a casting and was held by studs and nuts, the studs being enclosed (not visible) in the housing. Integral front housing for universal joint assembly.

REAR RADIUS AND BRAKE RODS: Brake rods had forged ends. Brake rod support brackets were of the type which go out and wrap down around the rods but were of a reinforced (stronger) design, which continued until the end of Model T production in 1927. Radius rods were of pressed steel with split ends (no forged rear fork).

WHEELS: Used 30 by 3 tires in front; 30 by 3-1/2 in the rear. Rear tires now have a tread pattern. Front wheels used ball bearings. Hub caps had “Ford” in script letters. “Made in USA” on all caps.

SPRINGS: Tapered-leaf, front and rear. “Figure eight” style shackles. Non-tapered front springs began to be used during the year.

RADIATOR: Supplied by Ford with the standard Ford script. “Made in USA” on all radiators under the Ford script.

ENGINE: No major changes from 1915.

ENGINE PAN: Typical “three dip” with narrow front “snout.”

OIL FILLER CAP: The mushroom-shaped cap, made of steel, with three flutes and the Ford script as used in later 1915. During the year the cap was made of thicker steel (running board scrap instead of fender scrap), and no “Ford” or “Made in USA” appeared. This style continued until the end of Model T production.

ENGINE CRANK: The plain steel sleeve type as used in 1915.

ENGINE FAN: Driven by a leather belt from a pulley at the front of the engine. The fan hub was cast iron, with the blades riveted in place. Adjustment was by means of a bolt/nut arrangement located on the right side of the front plate and bearing against a boss on the mounting end of the fan bracket.

MANIFOLDS: Exhaust pipe flared at the manifold and was held in place with the brass nut but with no packing. Intake was cast iron.

CARBURETORS: Kingston Model L2, or Holley Model G.

CARBURETOR STOVE: Several designs, all of which rose vertically at the rear of the carburetor and mated with the exhaust manifold at the rear area.

MUFFLER: Cast iron ends, mounted with brackets integral with the end castings. Exhaust pipe extension integral with the rear cover plate and no longer tapered or bent. Wrapped with asbestos, secured with three steel straps. The asbestos was not dyed black.

FUEL TANK: Cylindrical, under the front seat. Mounting brackets clamped to the tank. Outlet was between the center and the right side, between the frame rails. The sedan now has the “square” tank under the driver’s seat, a location that is to become the standard on the sedans until 1926 and on the Fordor sedans through 1927.

TRANSMISSION: Three pedal standard-design. Pedals are of the plain type used until the 1926 models. Transmission cover was cast iron. Tapered inspection door, held with six screws. The door was a plain metal plate with no script.

COIL BOX ASSEMBLY: Ford. The box had a tapered top to enable the coils to be changed in the limited space created by the new cowl. The box lid was one piece. The switch cover is now black painted steel with “Mag-Off-Bat” stamped on the bottom instead of the separate brass plate.

LAMPS: Magneto powered electric type, with clear lens. Black steel rims. Side and tail lamps are similar to 1915 but without brass rims.

HORN: Magneto powered electric. Button on top surface of steering column.

WINDSHIELD: Upright, with top section that folded to the rear. Frame was riveted to the mounting brackets. Painted black. (Unchanged from 1915.)

TOP: (Open cars). Same as 1915.

SPEEDOMETER: No longer standard equipment.

TURTLE DECK (on Runabout): Similar in style to the 1915. Handles were painted black. The deck on the coupelet now had the door on the top surface but did not have the handles as on the runabout.


1916 Changes



Acc. 78, Box 1, #91, Acc. 235, Box 39, #91, Ford Archives

30 x 3-1/2 non-skid tires to be supplied by U.S. Tire Co. Branches instructed to use up smooth tires first.



General Letter, Ford Archives

A letter to the branches notes that some of the production would be coming through with cast-iron transmission covers. The letter noted that the weight of the car would be twenty-five pounds more with the iron cover. (Surviving examples of seemingly-original cars seems to indicate that aluminum covers continued until about March, 1916.


JAN 21

Acc. 1701. Model T Releases, Ford Archives

F/N T-1017 (L) and T-1018 (R) body (firewall) brackets changed to a pressed-steel design to directly replace the forged types of the same part number.



Acc. 78, Box 1, #100, Ford Archives

Firestone tires being supplied to branches. 30 x 3 at $10.35; 30 x 3-1/2 at $13.10; less 20% discount.


MAR 16

Acc. 1701. Model T Releases, Ford Archives

The T-1017 and T-1018 pressed-steel firewall brackets were discontinued and the older forged type reinstated.


MAR 27

Acc. 575, Ford Archives

Use of cotter pins on crankcase discontinued. (They were apparently reinstated at a later date because they were used on later cars.)



"Black radiator" era begins.


AUG 14

Acc. 1701. Model T Releases, Ford Archives

Steering gear case changed from type "W" bronze to cast steel, and raven finished. Note on September 9 deleted raven finish and now to be finished in black enamel. Specified for "1917" cars. On the same date the material is changed back to type "W" bronze.



Acc. 1701. Model T Releases, Ford Archives

The new steering gear case is specified for the Model H truck. Apparently the TT truck was initially called the Model H, and there are many references to this call-out.


NOV 28

Acc. 78, Ford Archives

Decision to discontinue asbestos muffler wrap was announced. Mufflers to be painted with F-140 paint.