1914 Ford Model T news, pictures, specifications, and information
Sold for $37,400 at 2006 Gooding & Company
The Ford Model T was a mass-produced automobile. This Model T Speedster began life as one of those 166,000 touring cars that were constructed that year. It carried a price of just $550 which was much less than the price in prior years. Its first owner was Cecil McvVy of Costa Mesa, California and was eventually transformed into a racer and used in local dirt competition events. Over time, the car has been treated to a dropped front axle and period correct lowering brackets made by Craig Hunt. It has a RAJO overhead valve cylinder head and a high-tension Bosch Magneto with side-drive. The engine has a shortened Model A crank drilled for full-pressure lubrication. It is capable of producing over 80 horsepower. To combat all the power, a modified transmission was adapted that included needle bearings for the planetary gears.
Located in the rear is a period correct copper fuel tank with quick release fillers. The radiator was fabricated by Brass Works of San Luis Obispo which was formed in fashion to Edsel Ford's own Model T Speedster.
It is a light and powerful racer that is built to close specifications as an original Speedster of that era. It was offered for sale at the Gooding & Company Auction in Pebble Beach Concours. It was estimated to sell between $40,000-$50,000. The high bid of the day was $37,400; since there was no reserve on the vehicle, it was sold.By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2007
Called the 'Tin Lizzie,' the 'Flivver,' or just 'The Ford,' to many the Model T is the quintessential American automobile. In 1906, Henry Ford vowed to produce a single, affordable car for the public. The result was the Model T, introduced in 1909 for $850. By 1912, the efficient production in Ford's Highland Park factory near Detroit dropped the price to $690. At the peak of its production in 1923, when 1,800,000 cars were assembled, the Model T's price was $290. More than 15 million Model Ts were made from 1908 to 1927. At this time half of all cars in the Únited States were 'Tin Lizzies.'
Despite its place in America's heart, mechanically the Model T was not exceptional. Starting the engine, letting in the clutch, §teering, and braking required perseverance, skill and dexterity. Each Model T owner knew the idiosyncrasies of his/her car, and it is likely that this quirkiness added to the vehicle's charm. The changes wrought by Ford's efficient factories were profound. The economies of mass production drove small, individual automobile producers out of business and changed a diverse and specialized automobile market into one dominated by a handful of large producers.Source - frick Car Museum
In 1908 Ford built the first 'Model T.' 15 million cars later, Ford Motor Company became the premier auto builder in the Ú.S. The Model T allowed most owners to do their own repairs. Although this car was repainted in 1955, 1914 was the first year that all models were painted black, which continued until 1925. Black allowed the price to remain low - lower in fact in 1914 than in 1908. 1914 was also the first full year of work after the complete automation of the assembly line, and was the first year of the now standard left-hand driver position.
This car was purchased in May of 1914 for $619. That is the equivalent of $10,652 in 2001 dollars. The car was restored in 1956 and has less than 25,000 miles.
Collection of Chuck WestSource - SDAM
Most automotive historians consider the Ford Model T the most influential car of the 20th century. It represents Henry Ford's attempt to create a 'Universal Car.' Through a highly unorthodox business model and monumental production innovations, the humble T was able to literally put America on wheels. From 1908 until 1927 over 15 million were produced. It is important to note that 2008 marks the centennial of this landmark automobile.
The Ford Model T was 'the car that put America on wheels.' It was in production, albeit with very subtle changes, for 20 years - from 1908 until 1927. During that time more than 15 million were built.
The Model T has been described as having 'a chassis of blessed simplicity and dogged reliability.' It was equipped with a four-cylinder, side valve motor that produced 20 horsepower, and a planetary transmission.
By 1914, when this touring car was built, the time to build a Model T chassis had been reduced from 12.5 hours to one hour and 33 minutes. 1914 was also the year Ford introduced his revolutionary $5 a day wage.
Three Ford models were available for 1914 - a runabout, a touring car and a town car. The touring car sold for $550 base price. The Ford Motor Company built more than 300,000 cars in 1914.
This 1914 Ford Model T Touring car was restored in 1958. It was salvaged at Arlington, Oregon dump in 1952. The current owners purchased the car in 1976. The 1914 Model T production total for all body types was 250,000.
It has a comfortable cruising speed of 30 mph and a maximum speed in the neighborhood of 50 mph. It averages 18 miles per gallon of gas using 60 octane. The wheelbase measures 100 inches and it rides on 30x3 on 24-inch front tires. The rear tires are 30 x 3.5 on 23-inch wheels.
Powering the Model T is a four-cylinder inline engine with vertical cylinders. It is accessorized with Ruckstell 2-speed rear axle, speedometer, carbide fueled acetylene headlamps, kerosene fueled side and tail lights. The original cost was $550.By Daniel Vaughan | Jul 2011
Model T Speedsters represent the very beginning of hot rodding. Like all T Speedsters, this is a hand-built car, completed by its owner about 12 years ago. Driving this car in various events and tours became such a passion that the car was practically worn out during the past 12 years.
Over the winter of 2011/12 the decision was made to take the car apart, build a new engine, and rebuild the car for a second time. During the process, the current owner learned the Great Race was to start and finish in Michigan.
Having been a huge follower of the Great Race, and harboring a dream to compete in it, this was the owner's change! Adding a Warford overdrive and a few other goodies to the Speedster, time trials were started.
Nobody has attempted the Great Race in a Model T since the famous T restorer Bill Barth tried (and did not finish) over 15 years ago. The expert said, 'it cannot be done in a Model T' - Team 14 would prove them wrong.
The 2012 race started in Traverse City, and finished approximately 2,400 miles and nine days later at the Henry Ford Museum at Greenfield Village. It was a grueling 9 days (in addition to the several months it took to get ready for the race), but the current owner realized his dream and would not trade it for anything.
The Ford Model T has an extensive history in the automotive market lasting for nearly 20 years. It is often called the 'Tin Lizzie' and the 'Flivver' and is credited with 'putting America on wheels.' During the early 1900's, the automobile was very new and the market place was adjusting to having these horseless carriages carry its passengers rather than bicycles or horses. Steam, electricity, and gasoline were the three means of powering the vehicles. Up until about 1915, no one really knew which would be the favorable power-source. Steam provided many benefits such as being quiet, clean, and cheap. Gasoline or kerosene fuel was used to heat water in a boiler; the steam produced was channeled to the cylinders, where the pressure drives the pistons up and down. The shortcomings were that it took a while to start, having to wait for the steam to prepare. It was dangerous, often exploding and causing injury. It had a limited range, lasting about 20-40 miles before requiring a refueling. Electricity was popular but it too had a limited range. It was easy to start and was very popular with the ladies for driving around town. Then there was gasoline, which was dirty and hard to start. It required fueling stations which were sometimes difficult to find in this new and evolving marketplace. The main benefit of the gasoline engine was that it had the most potential and an ever increasing amount of power. It was said that how a vehicle finished on the race track often determined the success of sales. With gasoline engines winning most of the races, the other sources of power were eventually doomed.
There were over 200 automobile manufacturers during the early 1900's. The average production figures for a factory were a couple hundred vehicles a year. This of course varied greatly due to the complexity and prestige of the vehicle being produced. Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, produced a vehicle that was affordable, but more importantly, mass produced. By using an assembly line to construct parts, rather than the traditional hand assembly, the process was streamlined. Using an assembly line process was not new, it had been done before in the meat packing industry. William C. Klan had visited a slaughterhouse in Chicago. Upon returning from his visit, he proposed the idea to Peter Martin. A team was assembled and perfected through trial and error. The assembly line did not begin operation on the Model T until 1914. The assembly line process streamlined the production greatly, now averaging just over 90 minutes to assemble a car. During 1914, there were more Ford's produced than all other manufacturers combined. At that point 'you get it in any color you wanted so long as it was black'. Henry Ford favored the black color because it dried the fastest. During the years 1917 through 1923, Ford did not do any advertising, with 9 out of 10 cars being Fords, none was necessary.
He paid his workers a wage proportionate to the cost of the automobile, so they would be able to buy what they produced. By introducing these innovations, his factories were able to out produce and outsell the rest of the industry and mobilize the country. When production of the Model T began, the cost was around $850, around $1200 less than most cars. By the early 1920's, the price of the Model T cost about $300. Ford had found many ways to cut costs and offer the least-expensive product. He instructed his suppliers how to assemble the wood crates that were used to ship him parts. The crates were then dismantled and used within the bodies of the car. The scrapes were made into charcoal and sold under the name 'Kingsford'.
The first Model T was produced on September 27th, 1908 at the Piquette Plant in Detoit, Michigan. There are two classes of the Model T, those that were produced before 1919 and after 1919. The pre-1919 Model T's are known as veteran cars while the later models are called vintage cars. Even though the name Model T was used for almost twenty years, it was much improved both visually and mechanically over the years. At all times, the vehicle could be had in a wide variety of bodystyles. The open touring cars and roadsters were cheaper to produced and thus, produced in greater numbers. The Volkswagen 'Beetle' is the only car model to outsell the Model T Ford.
The Model T was designed by Henry Ford, Childe Harold Wills, Joseph A. Galamb and Eugene Farkas. A 177 cubic-inch four-cylinder motor was placed in the front and powered the rear wheels. The 20 horsepower engine was capable of carrying the vehicle to a top speed of around 45 mph. There were three main bearings and side valves. A ten gallon fuel tank could be found beneath the front seat, mounted to the frame. The engine started by a hand crank located at the front of the vehicle. The crank was very difficult to operate and has been the cause of many broken arms.
The smaller engines were favored by Henry Ford. His Model K had used a six-cylinder engine, but when production ceased around 1908, a six-cylinder engine would not be used again by Ford until 1941. The Model K had not been a sales success. While Ford had wanted to produce small and inexpensive vehicles, his board of directors had persuaded him to produce a larger, luxurious, and expensive model. In 1906, Henry Ford purchased the majority of stock leaving him in control and in charge of the direction of the company. After World War I he purchased the remaining Ford stock so he could dispense with the board of directors entirely. From 1906 through 1908, Ford created the Model N, R and S which eventually evolving into the Model T.
A 'three speed' planetary gear type transmission was used. This had been used in the Model K but was not suited to such a large vehicle. As a result it suffered from frequent breakdowns, but worked fine in the Model T. The 3-speed unit was actually two-speeds forward plus one reverse. With no clutch pedal, shifting was handled by floor pedals that did not require a clutch. Also located on the floor was a third pedal which operated the reverse gear. The throttle was controlled by a lever on the steering column. Neutral was located by the parking brake lever. The other foot pedal applied a band around a drum in the transmission. The parking brake lever operated the band brakes on the outside of the rear brake drums. When the hand lever was pulled back, the brake was engaged and the drive gears were disengaged.
Wooden 'artillery wheels' were standard until 1926 when they were replaced with steel wire wheels. The suspension was a transversely mounted semi-elliptical spring for both the front and rear axle. Brass was used throughout the earlier vehicles for items such as horns, radiators, and headlights. Headlights were acetylene lamps but later switched to electric lights.
Sales peaked in 1924 with over 2 million automobiles leaving the assembly line. By this time, many of Ford's competitors had switched to the same principles that had made the Model T success: a cheap and reliable vehicle built on an assembly line produced in mass quantities. Other manufactures started attracting new buyers by offering amenities, extras, or larger engines. Popular options included windshield wipers, anti-theft locks, and light dimmers. Chevrolet vehicles had three forward gears while the Model T still used only two. Also, since the Model T's were so durable, they were still in functioning order. Meaning that many owners did not need a car or when they did, they usually bought a more luxurious vehicle. The used Model T's were then sold for next-to-nothing. Sales began to dip in 1925 and dramatically in 1926. Production ceased in 1927 for nearly six months while preparations were made for the production of the Model A.
The Model T mobilized a nation, not only the United States, but many other countries. With dealerships and factories setup throughout the world, the Model T was mass produced and easily available to many buyers. Often, the factories were established in other countries to get around an import tax, thus keeping the cost low. The innovative Model T served its purpose. It was inexpensive and reliable, many lasting even to this day.
By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2006
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