1914 Body Bolts

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Original Smith
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1914 Body Bolts

Post by Original Smith » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:31 pm

I have a '14 that doesn't appear to have ever been apart, or even driven much. I am mostly familiar with 1913's. This car has every body bolt installed from the bottom with the castle nut on top and cotter pinned. The bolts are original. Comments? I'm guessing on this, but I just oiled the shackles and king pins for the first time in 100 years. All but one of the oilers still works, and the knurling is still fresh and new looking.


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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by Joe Reid » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:51 pm

How would that be efficient in production? Maybe a smart alleck in the day. Putting the body on the car happened all over at Ford factories so there are probably a lot of variations, very interesting point.


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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by Allan » Sun Aug 02, 2020 3:22 am

I need education here. Are you fellows talking about the 6 bolts which bolt the body down to the frame? My experience has been almost exclusively with colonial built bodies made here in Australia. Invariably, these are mounted with hex head, coarse thread plain nuts and bolt with no split pins. Finding exact replacements for these is almost impossible, as modern bolts of the same shaft diameter have a hex head one size smaller.

Allan from down under.

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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by DanTreace » Sun Aug 02, 2020 10:15 am

Likely an early T assembly process to place the bolts up into the body. Sure seems difficult, but maybe the early bodies were easier to fit that way.


Here is photo of and award winning 1911'ish, note the bolt head is under the body bracket.
Early body bolt.jpg

For later production, shown and described in Ford Service, the step @ paragraph 135, " Insert the six body bolts through the body and body brackets, running down the lock washers and nuts on the ends of the bolts." Appears to have nuts under the chassis.
later body bolt.jpg
My '25 was like that when pulled for restoring, put the lock washer and hex nut back as original (fabric webbing is add on for anti squeak.

25 body.jpg

However, the '23 cutoff is all original, never had body off frame, it has hex nut with lock washer under, but the bolt had hole and it got a side ways cotter key! How the Ford was assembled is a big guess on some of the details ;)

23  nut with cotter.jpg
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Original Smith
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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by Original Smith » Sun Aug 02, 2020 10:31 am

Many of you probably don't know this, but the early body bolts have a slightly crowned head, fine threads, and a cotter pin to hold everything. The bolts on these are a non standard 11/16" head and nut. The later T's have a 5/8" head and a lock washer and nut. I'm unaware of when this change occurred. This is trivia, but that's what I like.


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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by OilyBill » Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:35 pm

Something else to keep in mind, is that even though Ford started moving assembly lines on component production, the last thing to go to the moving assembly line was body mounting.
You can see many pictures of them putting Model T bodies on the chassis, but OUTSIDE THE FACTORY WALLS. This was because they were still determining the best way to do the body-to-chassis assembly. The trials were conducted out in the open, where they could move things around to suit the improvements they came up with as they went through the process.
Once they decided on all the details, body-assembly-to-frame was standardized, and was moved inside the plant and became a normal factory function.
Because yours is a 1914, I am willing to bet it was an early 1914 car, (or even late 1913) and was one of those that was assembled on the trial, temporary body mounting assembly line, out in the yard of the plant. They tried many different things on the way to the final procedure, and your car sounds like it was one of the trial car assemblies.


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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by 2nighthawks » Sun Aug 02, 2020 3:19 pm

Reading this entire thread thus far brings to mind something that just might be a factor here Larry. There were many Model T's that were loaded in railroad box cars in disassembled (including body separate from frame) for shipping, and when the boxcar load of Model T's reached final destination, the box car was spotted on a team track and the dealer was responsible for unloading and "re-assembling" the Model T's right there on the team track loading dock after which they were then drivin from there up to the dealership location. I'd be willing to bet that those fellows that did the assembling of the cars just put those body mounting bolts in just any way they pleased, in any way that seemed easiest to them, and nobody really cared or paid any attention,....even the dealer. Just a thought FWIW,.....harold

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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by George House » Sun Aug 02, 2020 6:28 pm

...and on some ‘team traxks’after wheels and tires were mounted; I’m told some dealership boys installed the brass hubcaps with a heavy rubber mallet.
One of the biggest problems with today’s youth is they’ve never known the fear of hearing leather being rapidly pulled through seven Wrangler belt loops.


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Re: 1914 Body Bolts

Post by Original Smith » Mon Aug 03, 2020 11:21 am

Another interesting bit. The center body bolt is usually about 1/8" longer than the front one. I haven't had a chance to check this '14.

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