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Old 12-16-2019, 11:14 PM   #1
bdtutton
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Default Make a model T a little more safe

I have been thinking about buying a 1914 or 1915 open touring car in the near future. My wife does not like the idea because the car is unsafe and does not have seatbelts. I know seatbelts would not do much, but they would keep you from flying out of the car in a minor accident. Anyone ever put seat belts in a T??

I have a 1930 Tudor that has been upgraded with turn signals, LED headlights and taillights, radial tires, seat belts...etc.... I know it is still not a safe car, but it is better than stock. Just wondering what can be done to a T to make it safer.
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Old 12-16-2019, 11:51 PM   #2
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

For a T, "rocky mountain" or "AC" brakes or something.
You can also add a stoplight.



I wouldn't want seatbelts in one. Nobody really wants to be tied to an upside down assembly of metal and splinters with the gas tank under the seat.
Most people would rather take their chances jumping clear of the wreckage.

Only 1 T with seatbelts i saw was because it had front brakes added and could send the passenger faceplanting into the windshield if you jumped on the brakes hard enough.
Most model T are not that one T though.
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Old 12-17-2019, 09:29 AM   #3
Jeff P. / MN
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Quote:
Originally Posted by bdtutton View Post
I have been thinking about buying a 1914 or 1915 open touring car in the near future. My wife does not like the idea because the car is unsafe and does not have seatbelts. I know seatbelts would not do much, but they would keep you from flying out of the car in a minor accident. Anyone ever put seat belts in a T??

I have a 1930 Tudor that has been upgraded with turn signals, LED headlights and taillights, radial tires, seat belts...etc.... I know it is still not a safe car, but it is better than stock. Just wondering what can be done to a T to make it safer.
I installed LED signal lights and seat belts in my 1930 Tudor. I have had 10 different Model T open cars in the past 40 years, none of which have had seat belts. My current Model T runabout will not have seat belts. I agree with D. Pís. assessment. I am very selective about where I drive it. I do run a LED flashing slow moving vehicle sign on the rear when I do drive it.
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Old 12-17-2019, 12:25 PM   #4
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Common knowledge in tractors and earthmovers may apply here. If your vehicle has a roll over protection system you need to be belted in but if your vehicle is open with no ROPS you do not want to be belted in so you can jump free in the event of a roll over. I drive a Roadster and in the event of a crash and the likelihood of a rollover I do not want to be strapped in but the possibility of being ejected is more likely. However my model A sport coupe with some sort of roll over protection a seat belt may be prudent. So, with a hard top you may want belts and with a open car you may not want belts. The likelihood of being in an accident are “relativelyl” low but you want to take precautions. These are very old cars with no built in safety cages. I guess the whole car can be considered a crumple zone. We accept the risk to enjoy our cars. I guess it’s a lot like riding a motorcycle in that way. Drive with safety in mind. Use your experience. That may be your best safety feature.
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Old 12-17-2019, 09:40 PM   #5
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Well said Scottio57!
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Old 12-18-2019, 10:23 AM   #6
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Do you walk around your house with bubble wrap taped to your body to protect you in case you fall down?


A Model T is a Model T. Act like it is 100 years old because in most cases it is. Motorcycles don't have seat belts either. Adding them to a Model T is not going to make you safer.
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Old 12-18-2019, 01:14 PM   #7
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

As you understand Royce our society is obsessed with protecting ourselves from ourselves! I have taught several younger people to drive a Model T and the hardest part to get through to them is to SLOW DOWN. They have to learn a different skill set than what they know driving modern cars. My latest student last fall passed with flying colors!
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Old 12-18-2019, 03:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Well said. The most dangerous part about driving is knowing that 95% of the other drivers have cell phones. A friend had his pickup totaled on Friday when a driver engrossed with his cell phone hit it. The truck was parked on the side of the road with orange cones arrayed 20 feet behind it and in front of it. The Camry was totaled. The F350 may also be totaled, it is pretty bad.




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Originally Posted by Jeff P. / MN View Post
As you understand Royce our society is obsessed with protecting ourselves from ourselves! I have taught several younger people to drive a Model T and the hardest part to get through to them is to SLOW DOWN. They have to learn a different skill set than what they know driving modern cars. My latest student last fall passed with flying colors!
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Old 12-24-2019, 05:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Quote:
Originally Posted by bdtutton View Post
I have been thinking about buying a 1914 or 1915 open touring car in the near future. My wife does not like the idea because the car is unsafe and does not have seatbelts. I know seatbelts would not do much, but they would keep you from flying out of the car in a minor accident. Anyone ever put seat belts in a T??

I have a 1930 Tudor that has been upgraded with turn signals, LED headlights and taillights, radial tires, seat belts...etc.... I know it is still not a safe car, but it is better than stock. Just wondering what can be done to a T to make it safer.
I have seat belts in all my antique cars, including my 1909 Model T. Recently was in an accident with my '27 T, coming to a stop when this jerk cut right in front of me. I hit him as I hit the brakes and was glad I had a seat belt on, even though I was going slow at the time. Better than no seat belt anytime.
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Old 01-01-2020, 11:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Is your 1927 T an open or closed car. I know seat belts are a good option in a closed car, but I am still trying to figure out if they are a good option in an open car. In an open car a seat belt would be helpful in a regular accident, but would be bad in a rollover. So the question is...how often does a Model T rollover in an accident? There must be some data that has been collected over time. Anyone know of any data about Model T rollovers??
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Old 01-02-2020, 10:42 AM   #11
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

I guess no one watches the news. Every day there is a crash and yes these crashes have
air bags seat belts warning mirror lights, cameras, and yet three fatal's this week. Good one, a pickup truck landed on a house roof?? I have investigated 1000's of accidents in
my police term of duty. I have never written a citation for some senior lady with a stupid
bulb out, or someone 42mph in a 40 zone. (the kid cops love that cause they are green yet) Let break this down with odds. Your T won't crash in the garage, Your T won't crash in the drive way. So you come out of the driveway, the odds will now start. You know turn on any road as you look left and right nobody, as you go into high; guess what a rice burner 6'oclock high right on ya spare tire most likely with a phone stuck in
their head. (I say were in hell you come from) and I can see for 1/8 mile clear. Yea they
are way over the 40mph limit. Going back, truck on a house roof, citation issued because no way a truck can get launched up in the air doing 35 40 mph. Oh he's got
seatbelts on and all that safety crap that gives a license for the air force blue angels.
In my life of duty all accidents are cause by one is too close to another, and that one gets a citation. Typical example, like 'how its done'. Stop light red women was over
the line so she backs up talking on phone of course, My cruiser is third car, light turns
green so she stuffs it 'still in reverse' and T bones car in front of me! Oh yea what do I
do; Citation 'failing to use caution intersection' $50 bucks plus towing (you stupid)
These are things we went through day in day out. Bottom line a T or any vehicle is as safe as one steers it; vehicles do not crash the driver does. In closing stay away from
those tailgaters, stay away from vehicles in front. A new PeterBuilt with trailer grossing
130,000 lbs or so seat belts or not to close aint no way to stop ending in a crash too close equals accident. Seat belts are for air planes: Air bags are for Bus springs. And then driving schools the teachers are now kids from this century what's hand signals ???
End of Rant
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Old 03-31-2020, 07:48 PM   #12
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

I was in an accident with my 1927 Touring. Guy cut right in front of me, while I was coming to a stop at a light. The instant I saw him, I hit him. I was only going about 8 MPH when I hit him, but I put seat belts in all my antique cars and felt the belt against my belly, but thank god I was wearing a seat belt. If you are worried about being trapped upside down in a Model T, by the seat belt, believe me you are not going to survive the accident to begin with. However if you are hit head on, regardless of how fast you are going at the time of impact, you can bet your ass, you have a better chance of much less injury than if you don't have a seat belt on. My Wife hates my Model T's also for safety reasons, so I don't take her for rides in them. Install belts for heavens sake.
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Old 04-01-2020, 03:29 PM   #13
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Thanks for your good work during your career Big Job.



I would disagree about seat belts, however. You want to stay in the car if you can. What percentage of crashes are rollovers? 2.1% Odds are that in most crashes, you will stay right side up, so you want to stay in the car. That said, attaching seatbelts properly is important. At the end of the day, you want to stay in the car and hopefully you will. I have belts in my 2 Model As and two V8s. My T is not on the road, but I will cross that bridge when I come to it.
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Old 04-01-2020, 04:02 PM   #14
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

You say your Model A is not safe but safer than your Model T! Now you are considering driving the unsafer car on an everyday basis. Why in the world would you ever consider driving an unsafe car? There is a good chance that you or some other person will get severely injured or killed! Your logic defies me!
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Old 04-15-2020, 05:38 PM   #15
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

One of our model T guys around SaJose, CA was hit in the left front when driving his model T express wagon.
He ended up an the street in the intersection.
Lucky he didn’t get run over. Put seat belts in it. Front and rear.
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Old 04-15-2020, 06:56 PM   #16
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Maybe an open Model T is not for the asker of the question and stay away from bicycles/motor bikes.
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Old 04-18-2020, 11:42 AM   #17
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Well said Mark!
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Old 04-18-2020, 01:26 PM   #18
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Kids. Grandkids. Neighborhood kids.

No mention of them. If there is a chance of EVER driving with kids in the car, I would at least put belts in the back seat. Belts would prevent them from being thrown out of the car in even a minor fender bender.

I have belts in my '22 Touring. They also keep little kids from standing up.

Besides. they are mandatory for ANY car carrying kids under 13 in my state. Fairly new law.
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Old 04-18-2020, 02:00 PM   #19
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

I agree with what is said about kids, BUT with wood body framing you better know what how and why the seat belts are installed BEFORE you just go bolting them in. There can/could be legal issues if you installed them and was done wrong.
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Old 05-13-2020, 06:53 AM   #20
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Default Re: Make a model T a little more safe

Hi. Thanks for your reccomendation. Security is always on the first place.
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