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5 Steps to a Successful Model T Restoration Projec

Owning a Model T means having your own piece of unique American history. As the first car to be mass produced using Henry Ford's famous assembly line, the affordable Model T made exploring the open countryside a favorite pastime for families and motorists all over the nation.

Snyder's is dedicated to providing enthusiasts with great Model T parts and helpful advice for restoring their antique cars into beautiful, functional pieces of history.

When starting a Model T restoration project, it can be hard to separate "the best from the rest" when it comes to finding reliable information, so we're here to help. Because we know that there are hobbyists from all levels of experience, we've put together some basic good advice that every Model T enthusiast should follow.

Here are 5 steps for beginning your Model T restoration:

1. Do the Research

Before you open your toolbox, you want to first make sure to do all the preliminary research on your Model T. A working understanding of your car's particular body style and history, will give you the knowledge you need to restore your Model T with authenticity.

Here is a helpful list of the Model T body styles by year:

  • 2-door touring (1909-11)
  • 3-door touring (1912-1925)
  • 4-door touring (1926-1927)
  • no door roadster (1909-11)
  • 1-door roadster (1912-1925)
  • 2-door roadster (1926-1927)
  • roadster pickup (1925-1927)
  • 2-door coupé (1909-1912, 1917-1927)
  • 2-door Coupelet (1915-17)
  • Town car (1909-1918)
  • C-cab wagon (1912)
  • 2-(Center) doorsedan (1915-1923)
  • 2-doorsedan (1924-1927)
  • 4-doorsedan (1923-1927)

Each body style has its own unique story.If you want to make your restoration 100% accurate to history, you need to know the facts. For example, after 1915, all Model Ts would have been painted black. Black paint was cheap and durable, which is why Henry Ford insisted on its use. Other details such as what kind of car door was common for your style, or what type of glass was used during its time period, are all important details that will make your restoration more authentic, and therefore more valuable.

That said, we understand that not all Model T enthusiasts are purists. Always feel free to do what you want, with the understanding that the more authentic your restoration is, the more valuable it will be.

2. Setting Up Shop


We know how excited you are to get started, but before doing so, you need to secure the proper area in which to restore and preserve your Model T. If you're working in your home garage, make sure that it has the right conditions to keep your Model T looking its best. A leaky garage is the last place your want your restored antique car. A dry or low-humidity environment will ensure all of your hard work won't go to waste. Test the conditions of your garage, and make changes to improve them if necessary.


Setting up a jack is another good idea: it will make for easier work, as well as save your tires during storage. Finding a good fitting cover is important, too.


3. Part, Parts, Parts

Once you understand exactly what you need, you can start purchasing the right parts to restore your Model T. There are many antique part sellers on the market, so be sure to find one with the right expertise and experience.

Snyder's has been in the business of selling top-quality, authentic parts and accessories to hobbyists for over 50 years. We offer Model T parts for many of the popular body styles.

Need help figuring out what parts you need? We're always here to help - just ask us!

4. Get your Hands on some Tools


That's right, it's tool time. If you're lucky, the original toolkit came with your Model T when you bought it "but if not don't worry; you can build your own. Having the right tools for the job is important.If you're looking for tools, we offer a selection of some of the best Model T tools that will help you get the job done right.


5. Follow the Directions

Yes, we said it. You might be a skilled mechanic, but whether this is your first restoration or your tenth, reading and following a manual will help keep you on the right track to bringing your Model T back to its former glory.

Once again, if you're lucky, the original mechanics manual came with your car.Experts agree that this manual should have most or all of the information you need for the restoration and maintenance of your Model T. However, if you don't have the original manual, or would like even more information to help you out, we offer a wide selection of Model T books.

Also, following the manual to keep up a regular maintenance regime during and after your restoration will keep your Model T in top condition.

Restoring a Ford Model T can be an overwhelming task, but if you follow the right protocol, it can be a fun, rewarding experience. Joining a Model T community or club is another action you can take to make your restoration a success. There are many Model T groups out there, both national and local. Being a part of one or more of these groups means getting extra advice and guidance as you go through the restoration process. You'll get the chance to meet other Model T enthusiasts with whom you can share your knowledge and passion.

Snyder's is always here for you too, both for your Model T part needs, and to answer any of your Model T questions. We hope after reading this, you'll be ready to get started on restoring your Model T!

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