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Old 06-05-2020, 10:47 AM   #1
theHIGHLANDER
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Default 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

I'll start by saying the topic is mostly moot. I shaggin a 39 std tudor together and once in a while I find little details, like the numbers on the glass headlight lenses. Near the top there's a '3' in the fluted area of 2 of them (I have 4), the top of the other says '1'. At the bottom it's got '81A' and below that I have 2 number '41' and another that's '10' and still another that's '24' ( I think that was it). The reason I said moot is that no matter what I have 4 lenses in wonderful condition, 2 for the car and a couple spares since they are glass after all.

Do the numbers mean anything? Are they shifts? Supplier codes? Dates? Random identities? I already know that '81A' is 38, and much like several other features of the 39 std, like bright windsheild frames and dual wipers, they're carryover from the previous year deluxe when used on 39s. Moot point? Quest for ever more historical knowledge? Morbid curiosity? Yes, yes, and yes. Thanks in advance...
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Old 06-05-2020, 11:03 AM   #2
Kube
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by theHIGHLANDER View Post
I'll start by saying the topic is mostly moot. I shaggin a 39 std tudor together and once in a while I find little details, like the numbers on the glass headlight lenses. Near the top there's a '3' in the fluted area of 2 of them (I have 4), the top of the other says '1'. At the bottom it's got '81A' and below that I have 2 number '41' and another that's '10' and still another that's '24' ( I think that was it). The reason I said moot is that no matter what I have 4 lenses in wonderful condition, 2 for the car and a couple spares since they are glass after all.

Do the numbers mean anything? Are they shifts? Supplier codes? Dates? Random identities? I already know that '81A' is 38, and much like several other features of the 39 std, like bright windsheild frames and dual wipers, they're carryover from the previous year deluxe when used on 39s. Moot point? Quest for ever more historical knowledge? Morbid curiosity? Yes, yes, and yes. Thanks in advance...
The 3, 1, 41, etc. are simply mold numbers. They mean nothing to you and I.
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Old 06-05-2020, 11:14 AM   #3
DavidG
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

The '37 lenses have '78' molded in the glass and as Mike indicates, the random numbers at the top, usually single digit, are mold numbers.

There are some who think that Ford paid its workers to sort the lenses by mold number so that they could be matched pairs. In an industry where every penny counts, the likelihood of that having happened is right up there with there will be no new cases of COVID-19 reported today.

Last edited by DavidG; 06-05-2020 at 12:15 PM. Reason: spelling correction
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Old 06-05-2020, 11:19 AM   #4
ford38v8
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

While the buckets are the same '37 through '39 Standard, the 78 lens is specific to '37, and the 81A lens to '38 and '39 standard. The '39 DeLuxe bucket differs, and takes a 91A lens.
You can think up a thousand more questions to ask, or buy the '38 - '39 Ford book from the EFV8CA and get 10 times more questions answered than you could ever dream up in a lifetime.


https://shop.efv8.org/collections/ford-books
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Old 06-05-2020, 03:06 PM   #5
theHIGHLANDER
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

It appears some of my vague assumptions were close, thanks.

Ford38, thanks for the lead. I may or may not get that book. My car is a really mild mod version. Stance and interior changed, was born a 60 and is now powered by an 85. My interior is distressed vinyl with race belts for the seat and a cloth headliner. Paint is original and will stay that way. I have a build thread on our "sister" forum:

https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/...#post-11096839

I just find some things worth looking into now and then, probably from 4 decades in the restoration game. Thanks again...
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Old 06-06-2020, 09:14 AM   #6
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by theHIGHLANDER View Post
It appears some of my vague assumptions were close, thanks.

Ford38, thanks for the lead. I may or may not get that book. My car is a really mild mod version. Stance and interior changed, was born a 60 and is now powered by an 85. My interior is distressed vinyl with race belts for the seat and a cloth headliner. Paint is original and will stay that way. I have a build thread on our "sister" forum:

https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/...#post-11096839

I just find some things worth looking into now and then, probably from 4 decades in the restoration game. Thanks again...
I think this forum is one of a few that can help you gain some insights now and then. There are actually a few guys that know their stuff on here.
Although I'm not much in to customs, I can appreciate them. I also appreciate anyone that has a desire to learn.
Have a great weekend and enjoy a little touring if you're able...
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Old 06-06-2020, 11:22 AM   #7
Karl Wescott
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Default Re: 1937-39 std headlight lens numbers...?

One other note, most of the "reproduction" lenses actually are re-runs from an original mold that was saved. Therefore, except for mold wear they are nearly 100% correct, but there is only 1 mold number in use for a given lens.
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