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Old 08-30-2019, 06:36 AM   #1
Garagekulture13
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Default Body Identification

A friend of mine who builds hot rods has come into a 1917 Ford Coupelet or so they are calling it. I've been on him about not cutting the body up and just building it back original. He has been mulling it over and asked me if he doesn't want to hot rod it would I be interested and buying it. I told him I didn't think I really had a choice. I would be honored to save the old girl. I'm a Model A guy and know little about Ts. I've done some searching and it seems 1917 coupeletes have several variations. So with these pictures can you all confirm whether or not this is in fact a 1917 coupelet? Thanks ahead for any help anyone may be able to offer.

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Old 08-30-2019, 08:29 AM   #2
Royce P
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Default Re: Body Identification

There were at least two different styles of 1917 couplet body used on the Model T. The one in your photo is later, from 1919 - 1922 I believe based on what I think is a wooden firewall seen in one photo. Many of these are already ruined by hot rodders. He could save himself a lot of time and money buying one that is already trashed on eBay, then turning it into his "project".
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Old 08-30-2019, 12:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: Body Identification

On the MTFCA site it states the 1917 had a wood firewall.

http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/1917.htm

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Old 08-30-2019, 07:05 PM   #4
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Default Re: Body Identification

The wood fire wall was used into 1923 so your date range sounds about right. I have to agree, too nice of a body to rod out esp if the wood is still good.
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Old 08-31-2019, 08:04 AM   #5
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Default Re: Body Identification

The tops were generally rounded more around the back. Doors didn't go all the way to the top of the car. Fuel tanks were sometimes under the seat.

It's a lot harder to tell when the other car characteristics are missing. The shape of the top, the belt line configuration, the construction of the doors, and gas tank placement may be all you have to work with. The side posts were removable in 1917 & 18 and you see photos with them removed now and then. The door handles were the loop or bale type if I remember correctly.

1917 had the landau bar type coupe with the soft top and they had at least two configurations of hard top types with the rounded edges being prevalent in both. A lot of folks think the later version spilled over into 1918 with some changes and that is possible giving the wartime build up at Ford in that time frame.

The example photographed above looks like the ones beginning in 1919 and carrying on to 1922 with the characteristics I can see. It should be easier to find a good chassis for these years.

If it was a roadster, it would likely already be on a hot rod. The tall Ts are an acquired taste for hot rods. The roofs aren't all that stable when they are in good shape let alone when the body is mated to a fire breathing frame & engine combo.

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Old 08-31-2019, 10:16 AM   #6
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I agree 1919-1922 body style. It should be saved it was already started into a hot rod if you look at the rear of the body you can see the cut outs for the body to drop over the rear axle.
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Old 08-31-2019, 05:05 PM   #7
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Default Re: Body Identification

And the tail lamp cut-outs in the back panel !
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:24 AM   #8
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Default Re: Body Identification

I really appreciate everyone's input. Yes I saw the notches for an axle and the holes for what looked like 1950 Pontiac lights in the rear. It doesn't seem these cars sale for very high. I definitely don't want to see the car cut up but I'm trying to figure out the cost to value ratio. I believe $3500 is the price but not entirely certain.

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Old 09-02-2019, 12:40 AM   #9
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Default Re: Body Identification

I'm afraid its going to get cut up for that price. By the time you finish it you'll be buried
in it. How bad do you love it?
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