Model T Wheels Over The Years


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While Henry Ford thought the Model T was the ideal car and resisted Edsel Ford’s urging to replace it as first Dodge and then Chevrolet started to erode Ford’s market share, the fact is that the Model T indeed had its share of upgrades. While visiting the Piquette Ave. site where the Model T was developed and first produced, I was struck by how many different kinds of wheels the Model T wore over the 19 years it was produced. It started with rather spindly looking wooden spokes, and later moved to more robust spokes, though still wooden. Eventually steel wire spoke wheels were used. Specialty vehicles, like trucks and early 4WD efforts, were equipped with heavier duty wheels, or in the case of the Model T snowmobile, front skis and rear tracks. Here’s a gallery of the various wheels used by Ts over the years. For comparison’s sake I’ve also included photos of the wheels of the Model A, Ford V8, and 2005 Ford GT also on display at the museum.

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One Response to Model T Wheels Over The Years

  1. Scott Kelley says:

    Henry Ford was also known to require suppliers to meet exacting standards regarding the shipping containers the part were shipped in.

    If I recall correctly one example was his using the shipping containers for part type X, after being emptied of their contents, as part of the floor board of one of his Model A or T or whatever.

    His planners knew they would need X number of floor pans and X number of components using the future floor pans and that X number of future floor pans would come from the shipping containers so Ford would build X number LESS floor pans to fill the gap of total floor pans needed.

    Multiply that times the containers used by part suppliers whose shipping containers were recycled, used in building Ford cars, and the savings add up!!!!!!

    Sell a unit and profit is only a percentage of the selling price.

    Cut a cost and profit is the total amount of the cost cut.

    Maybe one of the writers could delve into Ford’s creativity in various areas and share it here.

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