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trim code 76
04-16-2009, 02:26 AM
I added this to the end of my previous post but thought I should post it on it's own. My car is at the paint shop right now (the factory paint could not be saved) The body is perfect and the rest of the car is 100% untouched and in fantastic condition. When I was taking everything out of the inside I discovered that on the inside of one of the door panels in black grease pencile it states "7/13" (last day of production), "last day, last car"! I had a pretty good idea it was possibly the last one and know there is some question as to the last actual number produced but this very well may be it!!!! I also found carefully placed under the factory carpet a paper shamrock that states "This is your lucky shamrock" built on the 13th.... I guess so!! The car is 99% factory original to the car, with the exception of the exhaust pipes and mufflers (Have factory date code mufflers in the box, they will be going on. I even have a factory oil filter) and the battery (Have a reproduction Power Punch, only reproduction part on the car). I bought it for the interior (my log in name) but got real lucky on the number!

bird 60
04-16-2009, 02:55 AM
Congratulations, & for your sake I hope it is the Silver Chalice of the Squarebirds. Now some-one has to come up with the First.

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

byersmtrco
04-16-2009, 03:26 AM
Wow . . . Now THATS something !!!
I'd be curious the last didgets of the VIN and the destination code.

Is it in the TB reg?

LuckyJay
04-16-2009, 09:47 AM
When it says "7/13" does that imply July the 13th? I was under the notion that the 60 t-Birds were in production into September of 1960. What is the VIN of your car and what does the DATA plate code the date to be?

trim code 76
04-16-2009, 12:47 PM
Data plate info: #OY71Y192784 (#92,784). Body:63A, Color:Z, Trim:76, Date:13W, Trans:4, Axle:3. 13W was the last day of production.

fomoco59
04-16-2009, 02:19 PM
Greg,
You should get that car into the TBird Registry. (http://www.tbirdregistry.com/rat.asp)

YellowRose
04-16-2009, 03:28 PM
According to Automotive Mileposts, there were 92,843 '60 Squarebirds manufactured that year. The highest number ever for Squarebirds. Also, September 13th (13W) was the last day for production according to them. I don't know why "7/13" would have been written, instead of 9/13, unless part of the 9 wore off.

I do not know how you account for the other 59 that were manufactured between 92,784 and 92,843, but I recall reading somewhere, that Ford did not always manufacture cars in the exact order by serial number. It could be that the '59 other cars, where different models on different lines, like the J Code, or the convertible. I think that one of the line workers would not have taken the time to write what they did, and do with they did if that car was NOT the last car on their line.. And yes, it should be registered on John Rotella's Tbird Registry, since it is a very historical car.

http://automotivemileposts.com/tbird1960selections.shtml

GTE427
04-16-2009, 04:30 PM
On the other end of the spectrum, I recall a VTCA piece in the seventies where someone scouting a yard turned up a 60 HT, serial number ONE. He bought the car and restored it.

I remember seeing the car in the registry, believe it's located in Pennsylvania.

Interesting concept, two last cars, last built and last numbered. Besides the pencil markings on the car, wonder if there is anyway to document this as the last one, such as a Ford newsletter or a photo shoot to commemorate the ocassion. This was the last 60, the last of the body series and a big sales success, my hope is the last car would have received some publicity.

Does anyone have the data on the Stainless Steel TBirds? These would have been near the end as it's been written the dies would have been damaged stamping the SS panels

Richard D. Hord
04-16-2009, 06:15 PM
Am I mistaken or wasn't the 1960 stainless steel Thunderbird the last one to be produced? Since stainless is so hard, once the sheet-metal stamps or dies were used they were destroyed.:rolleyes:

YellowRose
04-16-2009, 06:18 PM
Here is the information that I and others posted regarding the stainless steel Squarebirds.

http://www.squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=5499&highlight=Stainless+Steel+Tbirds

I think you are right about them not making them until the end of the production run for the reasons stated.

Dan Leavens
04-16-2009, 06:29 PM
Chris you definitely have to get your 60 accredited by Ford as the last off the production line somehow and get it registered.

JohnG
04-16-2009, 06:54 PM
The last 1960 in the TBird Registry is 0Y71Y192834 and the Registry says it was produced Sept 13,1960. See

http://www.tbirdregistry.com/viewdatasheet.asp?RegistryNumber=14845

Any chance the "7" was a poorly made "9" ??

YellowRose
04-16-2009, 07:51 PM
I just talked with Lou Paliani, Pres. of VTCI, here in San Antonio. I asked him if he knew how one could get Ford to write a letter authenticating this Tbird as being the last of production. He said, in essence, good luck! They get NO support from Ford whatsoever, which is a shame. One could contact the VTCI Ford Rep, and see if he could help.

His suggestion was to photograph everything you told us about, regarding dates, and inscriptions you found on the car, and under the carpeting. Then contact Alan Tast, who is sure to see this when he logs on next. Alan might be able to give you full details on this. Lou also said that even though there were 59 other cars in the serial number range, after yours, that they did run seperate lines for different models, ie, J cars, and convertibles. And lastly, that they did, supposedly run the stainless steel cars as the very last runs for the reasons stated below. Hope this helps! And YES, get it registerd in John Rotella's Tbird Registry!

Ca58tbird
04-16-2009, 07:56 PM
The last 1960 in the TBird Registry is 0Y71Y192834 and the Registry says it was produced Sept 13,1960.
Any chance the "7" was a poorly made "9" ??

As was true of the 58 year model run, quite often date codes did not follow the VIN# in numerical sequence. Thus this may have happened in 59 as well. Not even for different date codes, but also as to when an early model VIN may have come off the line later then an earlier VIN. This was due to to the tree or flow chart of installing optional equipt in different cars. All basic models with no options or standard equipt followed the shortest line to the finish line. If a special paint job or a different engine was ordered, then that car was pulled out of the line and parked for the upgrade. For the 58 model year I have seen date codes off from numerical order by as much as 5 days.

Because our subject bird has a VIN# of 784 and the last numerical was 834, that is a moving quantity of 50 birds on the line at one time thru out the day. It would stand to reason that they got all mixed up to the finish line with optional installs and coffee/lunch breaks.

It would be fun to know if Sept. 13, 1959 was a Friday. Oooh, how macabre if that were the case.

JohnG
04-16-2009, 08:47 PM
3 quick notes:

1) take a look at the comments on the next-to-last 1960 which is at
http://www.tbirdregistry.com/viewdatasheet.asp?RegistryNumber=1675 and are for VIN 0Y71Y192812

the comments are:

Registrar's Note: This Thunderbird has a higher consecutive unit number than Ford's official production records indicate would exist. Please see the Thunderbird Registry Lowest-Highest C.U.N. Information Page (http://www.tbirdregistry.com/lohi.htm)

2) the last two in the Registry have leather interiors. I wonder if that could cause things to get out of sequence?

3) your car and 0Y71Y192744 both have the rare interior combination 76. His was also produced on day 13W. (see http://www.tbirdregistry.com/viewdatasheet.asp?RegistryNumber=31937 )

All this has reminded me of what a remarkable resource John Rotella has provided us all with!

john

JohnG
04-17-2009, 01:13 AM
Tuesday September 13, 1960 at Wixom through the TBird Registry:

0Y71Y192746 is the first car with 13W to show
0Y71Y192834 is the last VIN

so at least 88 cars left the plant that day!

If you look through them, you find many with leather, as well as a well above average number of power options.

trim code 76
04-17-2009, 03:08 AM
Please excuse my haist in reading the door panel, the "seven" turns out to be a "nine". I need glasses!!!! (Plus I know that the last production date was Sept. What was I thinking!!!!!) A rather sloppy "nine" looks like a seven until looked at up close (Please excuse). I am unsure if the stainless birds were part of the production numbering. I thought they had their own numbers, or special numbers. I heard a possible rumor that the last five(?) squarebirds procuded were silver to honor/get ready for the stainless cars????? Is this true??? Mine is silver. As to reporting a higher number produced, I am totally unsure about this. I have read of about 4 different ending production numbers, some higher and some lower. I wounder about the order of the vin numbers going down the assembly line, maybe they were out of place??? Could it be that there were higher production numbers, but mine was last off the line????? Very strange. I would love to find out this quandry. I guess I should put a (?) around the statement "last squarebird". Possibly an unsolved mistery??? (Bumber) I have confirmed the car was sold at "Hollywood Ford" Hollywood CA. Car was owned by the head sound editor for Paramount Studios. He helped produce "The Ten Commandments"

trim code 76
04-17-2009, 03:51 AM
John,
I will take some pics in the next few days of all the stuff I have on it (door panel writing, lucky shamrock......) and send it to whoever wants to recieve it (contact info please). Also, the car has just turned 100,000. A california car, The undercarage is absolutly free of rust, untouched. It still has the factory yellow stenciled part number on the drive shaft (and light blue inspection stripe), the yellow strip on the backside of the passengers side front spring, drivers side stripe is on the front of the spring, medium blue strip one of the front control arms (each side, sorry for not knowing the correct name for the arm), there is also yellow paint around the lower ball joint. The rear end has the factory red primer in near perfect condition with a grase pencil assembly line making on the passenger side. the rear end still has the metal tab on one of the bolts (drivers side) on the primer side. States the gear ratio (I believe), mine states 3.00. The top of the transmission vissible from the engine compartment has a white grease pen mark on the top (crude OK). There are many other marks. The car has never been touched underneith. The gas tank does not have any undercoating on it (strange as i thought all had this done). Mine has very little undercoating on the back 1/3 of the car (poor job). The gas tank straps are black paint with no rust. The undercarrage is in such great shape the underside of the front subframe has the factory redbrown primer still in perfect condition even up into the spring housings! No rust at all!! The sides are painted a flat black. The front wheelwells are undercoated with a crudely masked off squared area around the opening to where the "A" arms come through. This area is the silver body color with undercoating being sprayed in a so-so manner around the rest of the wheelwell. Sorry guys I do not mean to run on about this, it's just that this is truely an amazing car as far as originality and very exciting on the possibilty of being the last one off the line (somehow??). I hope this is some useful info for some of you and will be happy to send pics to be posted on all of this. It should be a very helpfull resource for restoring squarebirds. Thanks for the interest and help guys! Also, I thought I had posted it on the registry, I will have to check my records. Again thanks to all, this is a fantastic site!!!!!!!!! Proud to be a squarebird owner!!

YellowRose
04-17-2009, 03:51 AM
Hi Greg,

Thanks for clearing up the "7/13" situation. I figured that had to be 9/13 for September 13. I do not know if the stainless steel birds had different serial numbers. So far, we know, from what Lou Paliani, VTCI prexy, and others have said, that cars were often produced out of serial number sequence for numerous reason. Cars with special paint codes, or special features, or different engines, transmissions, etc., were often grouped together for final production at certain times. They would be set off in a group to be run through all at the same time, I am told.

As for a difference in production numbers, Automotive Mile Posts has it at 92,843. The very respected LoveFords website http://www.lovefords.org/tech/production/60.htm has it at the same number. 63A Thunderbird Hardtop - 80,983, 76A Thunderbird Convertible - 11,860 = 92,843.

Wikipedia further reports: 1960's sales figures hit another record: 92,843 units sold, including 11,860 convertibles. A rare option in this year was a sunroof (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Sunroof); this "Golde Edition" (Golde was a German company whose sunroof patent Ford licensed) sold 2,530 examples.

At the end of 1960 production two Thunderbirds were constructed of stainless steel (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Stainless_steel) for the Allegheny Ludlum Steel Corporation, at a price of $35,000 each. Because of the properties of stainless steel, the production dies would be destroyed as a result of the stamping of the parts. This was not a problem for Ford, as the next generation of T-Bird used a new body style. To duplicate the T-Birds 3,957 lb. normal production weight, body panels were made of Type 302 stainless steel, and trim pieces out of Type 430 stainless steel. At the time of their production, because of the maximum rolling mill for stainless steel only produced stock that was 72 inches in width, both cars' roofs were constructed from two 42-inch-wide sections which were welded together in the middle (the roof would have required an 84-inch-wide sheet of stainless steel, which apparently could not be obtained). Both T-Birds received mechanical and interior restorations in the 1980s and survive to this day, with one on permanent display at the Heinz History Center (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Heinz_History_Center) in Pittsburgh, PA (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Pittsburgh,_Pennsylvania).

Lou suggested that you take pictures of everything you can find on the car with that 9/13 date and statements about it being the last car off the line. And what you found under the carpeting. And all the markings you have found under the car. Document everything in pictures. PM Alan Tast, and send him all the information you have.He might be able to answer your questions regarding 5 silver cars run at the end of production and the questions about the stainless steel car VIN numbers. Alan is THE foremost living authority on Tbirds of our time. For those of you who have the various manuals for our Birds, you often see credit given to Alan for the photographs or technical information from his collection. Alan MIGHT even be able to tell you how to obtain verification and authentication that your Tbird IS the last one off the line... Perhaps you will be able to get a letter out of Ford to that effect yet.. Or at least, Alan might be able to confirrm for you what it appears you have.. The last one off the line...

trim code 76
04-17-2009, 03:48 PM
Ray,
Thank you very much for your help. Please excuse my lack of up-to-dateness with computer lingo....when you state PM Alan Tast....what exactly is that?? I do not have any contact info for him. I have many pics of the items and would be happy to email them to him and anyone else who would like help with restoring their car. Is there a common site i can email them to so I can get them up on this website? I think the photos would be of help to some of the guys. They have helped me out in the past, would like to return the favor. Again, the web site is VERY GOOD! Very active/helpful memebers, whoever put it togehter...CONGRATS!!!!

Greg

GTE427
04-17-2009, 04:01 PM
PM = Private Message

Go to Members List, click on "A" for a list, click Alan H Tast for his profile, in the top left you'll find contact info, select send Private Message.

YellowRose
04-17-2009, 05:23 PM
Hi Gregg,

First of all, thanks, Ken for explaining what PM means and how to do it. You can send any pictures of your Tbird you would like posted to me, and I will post them for you. My email address is: rayclark07@gmail.com

Thank you for the compliments. We are just a bunch of guys who love Tbirds helping others who also love them. As to who created the Squarebirds Forum, we have Alexander Sosiak to thank, and SandyBoy and others. Unfortunately, as you might have seen, if you looked up in the top of this forum, Alexander passed away last year. He was a great guy, another person who knew his Thunderbirds, and we suffered a great loss with his passing. :(

trim code 76
04-17-2009, 07:22 PM
Ray, I will be sending you a bunch of pics, I have not yet photographed the door panels with the last day, last car on them yet, they are in the garage and right now it is dumping rain so I will have to get out there in the next day or two and get those sent off. Ken, thanks for the PM info, I will send it off to Alan very soon. I will keep you posted. Cheers.
P.S. Sorry to here about Alexander. He helped me out before, i wandered what happened. He was a good guy, always helpful. He will be missed. We will carry on for him.
Greg

Hawkrod
04-18-2009, 01:22 AM
I am late to the party as usual so I figured I will just write a little and repost a bunch of old posts from various forums to help clear the issue and dispell some myths. First thing I will say is cars were not pulled from the line for options or different engines etc... The cars were all built the same way and it did not natter what engine was being installed. This is because cars were batch built based on needs. If a 430 car required special handling (which it should not have) then they would have simply done a group of them at the same time, not pulled one off the line and sent elsewhere. This is also specifically why the cars serial number has nothing to do with the order it was built in. You can have two cars that are one number apart and they could have been built weeks apart. This is the norm not an exception. Also, one of the most critical and least understood concepts on Fords is the date code on the door tag. The date on the door has absolutely nothing to do with the day the car was built. The date on the door tag is the day that the car is scheduled to be finished on the day the order is entered in the system. It is actually amazing how few cars are built as scheduled. Another falacy is "the last scheduled day of production". That is absolutely never the last day that cars are built. After regular production ceased Ford continued building cars that are called "balance out" cars. These are unfinished scheduled units, defective units that are repaired and returned to the line and if there are enough spare parts it will also include a few cars built to use up the parts. There are usually only a few dozen at the most but these cars are always built after the last scheduled date and often when the new model cars are actually being started. The last issue is the total number of cars built versus the highest serial number. The highest serial number will always exceed the total number of units built because not all numbers are actually used. Once a serial number is assigned it does not get reassigned even if the car is not built (special orders that get cancelled are an obvious example)

Anyway with all that being said here are some of my old posts on the issues:

This has stumped me for a while now. I have one of the very last, if not the very last(?) 60 bird built. #92,784. It is completely original, untouched. Where are some of the places to find ROT (build) sheets?? I have looked under both front seats and the rear (both parts), on top of the gas tank, ANY OTHER PLACES TO LOOK??? I would love to find at least one. Also, any ideas on home to pinpoint which dealership my car came from?? I know it was in the Hollywood CA area. Thanks !!! The answers on this should be interesting!


Wow, that is a late serial number, probably within the last 1000 cars produced and could, just as easily, be the last one. Always remember though, cars were not built sequentially, the serial number does not indicate what order the cars were built in and there are also usually a few thousand serial numbers that are not used. So, although there were 98,000+ cars built, the serial numbers may range as high as 105,000 or 110,000 (serial numbers would actually look like OY73Y205000 at this high number) but I have not seen that yet on a 60 Bird. My 60 was built in mid August which was very late as far as normal cars go but not unusual for a Tbird. I would guess your car would have a September date? I have found ROT sheets under the carpet and tucked into seat springs on both front and rear seats.

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I shot some pictures of 5 junk yard Squarebirds that I will post soon. I included pictures of the data plates and found that the VIN number on one of the 59's is only 383 higher than mine. The date code on mine is 10L (a Tuesday), and the date code on the junk yard car is 13L (a Friday). So that's 383 cars produced in 3-4 days.

Vern


Unfortunately you would be wrong in your assumption. Cars are not built sequentially. A car with a serial number 383 higher than yours could have been built weeks before or after yours. On your build sheet there is a box marked ROT and it has a number in it. The numbers run from 001-999 and then start over. That is the sequence cars are built in. 001 was followed by 002 etc... Cars were batch built based on common features to make the line run faster so they would build a group of say 50 white cars and then 50 red or whatever. If you look at that line picture you will notice that the cars are the same color. I have two 1968 Mercury Cougars, one is 8F93S545119 and the other is 8F93S545139. They are actually twin cars and were built in the same batch but 139 was finished three days before 119. I have also seen 8F93S545117 and it was built 4 days after 139! The serial numbers are no good for figuring out production because the numbers are not related to the assembly process. Hawkrod

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Cars are batch built and they have an ROT number. There are actually two ROT numbers and one is for paint. Keep in mind that the serial number has nothing to do with the order cars are built in. As I have mentioned before, serial number 000001 is not always the first car built. I have also mentioned that I have two otherwise identical special order 1968 Hertz Rent A Car Diamond Blue Cougar XR7-G's and the serial numbers are 8F93S545119 and 8F93S545139, the 139 car was built Friday and the 119 car was built the following Tuesday. The ROT numbers are about 240 apart and that means a lot of cars were built between them! Hawkrod

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In this case a car with sequence number of 841002 could have very well been assembled after a car with a sequence number of 843000, or visa-versa.
I don't think this is true. A VIN of 841002 would always come after a VIN of 841001. That's why it's called a sequence number. The orders from the various DSOs are not likely assigned VINs until the cars are built and the orders are filled.
Sorry, you would be mistaken about the number. The sequential unit number has nothing to do with the sequence the cars are built in, it only has to do with the sequence in which the orders were accepted which is the point a serial number is assigned. Cars are batch built to make production easier and cars are assigned ROT numbers which is short for rotation. The ROT number on your build sheet or buck tag is the order cars were actually built in. Rotation numbers are three digit numbers that start 001 and go to 999. The next car after 999 is 001 again because there is almost no chance that the previous 001 is still in the plant although as time went on that did become an issue and so it was changed to a 4 digit number eventually (80's I think). It is very possible that 841002 could be built weeks before 841001. If 841001 was a black car and the only one scheduled or had an unusual option that required extra work it could be built long after a batch of cars that were all the same color or all had the same assembly needs. Specifically, I own three nearly identical cars. They are 1968 Mercury Cougar's. The serial numbers on two of them are 8F93S545119 and 8F93S545139. The 139 car was built 2/29/68 and the 119 car was built 3/04/68. I have also seen 8F93S545117 and it was also built 4 days after 139. The point of this is with Cougars being a much higher production rate car the numbers are out of whack like this so on a slow production car like a MK III a couple of weeks could easily have been normal. I will also note that there is a known very low number 69 Mustang that was ordered in June but not built until December due to unavailability of the engine. The serial number was already assigned but tens of thousands of cars were built before this one rolled down the line. Hawkrod

YellowRose
04-18-2009, 02:03 AM
First of all, I want to thank Hawkrod for his input on the importance, or more specifically, the lack of importance the serial number or sequential VIN numbers played in the actual production of the cars. That information runs counter to other things I have read and been told, which I took to be fact. It was excellent reading and should help us better understand how these cars were run through the production lines. His comments also high lighted the importance of finding that very elusive ROT or Build Sheet, that so many of us search for but rarely find.

Greg asked where else he could look. Some have said they found their ROT sheet behind the AC unit. I am not sure if they meant the one on the firewall, or up under the dash. Some have found them stuffed up in the dash area. Most, however, when they have been found, were under the carpeting, front or back, or stuck up in the springs of the front seats or the back seats. They could be anywhere, but the old time linemen told us they often put them in the seats, before they battened them down. I read the story that they did not throw them away because it meant just that much more trash to dispose of. So, instead of doing that, while inside the car, they had the ROT sheet(s) with them and just stuffed them into the car interior somewhere. You might check the rear side panels, and those arm rest areas in the back also.

Once again, thank you for sharing the information you did, Hawkrod. It was very interesting!:p

trim code 76
04-18-2009, 02:55 AM
Ray,
Thank you for the extra info, I still have not found the ROT sheet, I am afraid to really lift up the carpet, it is really stuck down in a lot of places, probably mostly from time and feet?? It is the original carpet and has never been up. I have taken everything out except the carpet for the paint job and have found nothing, maybe I will try the carpet a little more. Hawkrod has brought some interesting material to the table I have never heard of before. I do not know if this will ever truely be solved (wish "Unsolved Mysteries" was still on TV!). The door panel is the only place I have found anything stating the car is the last one. I do not know if that is enough proof , or that in conjunction with the date code??? I will see what ALan T. has to say and post the reply. To recall what Crnl. Clink said on "Hogens Hero's" ....."Verrrrrry Interesting!!"

YellowRose
04-18-2009, 06:06 AM
Greg and all. I just finished creating a web page with a ton of pictures on it that Greg sent me, and an overview of his '60 Tbird, and why it MIGHT be the last one made. Read his comments on the things he found in the way of markings in it. And enjoy the pictures of a Tbird that has remained almost entirely original since the day it was born... Here is the link. I'm going to bed!:D

http://squarebirds.fortunecity.com/GregPrince/GregPrince1960Tbird.htm (http://squarebirds.fortunecity.com/GregPrince/TrimCode76%2760Tbird.htm)

Dan Leavens
04-18-2009, 11:40 AM
Ray fantastic site and tribute for what could be a very unique car. Your committment to our site does not go unoticed. Great job.:D

tmjsong1aolcom
04-18-2009, 02:18 PM
Very interesting thread as is the posting of the pics. Would luv to see the markings from the door and any other unique markings from the bird.

Finding ROT sheets on squarebirds is an adventure but this one would help a lot in determining thwere it went down the line. Please rmember that the Lincoln was built on the same line as the bird and as stated by Hawk the serial number has nothing to do with when the bird was built.

If the bird has power seats look under the drivers side springs. Most likely under carpeting or in the rear seat springs. It could be anywhere.

Last ?? is about the vin #. The one stamped in the fender is 192744 or at least this is what it appears to be which matches the original owners info. Post a pic of the data plate.

Lots of neat original documentation, and really surprised it has survived to this date.

Fuz
58's&64's
Sun Prairie, Wi.
tmjsong1@aol.com

YellowRose
04-18-2009, 03:30 PM
Hi Fuz,

Yes, this is something of a puzzler. I have already informed Greg that there seems to be a discrepancy between the VIN number cited on the Data Plate,(192784, the one punched into the fender and the one on the Registration card. I looked at the original picture to try to get a better view of it, but they are the same. (It appears to be 192744) Another interesting thing is that the California Registration form is dated 10/20/60! That is a week from time it came off the line to the day it was registered in California! Interesting again! There is also a typo on that DMV Registration card. It says the VIN # is 0171Y192744 NOT 0Y71Y192744.

He has not found the ROT or Build Sheet but it is not because he has not been looking! He has not taken up the carpeting entirely because he has been loath to do so, since it is all original. He might want to take his front seats out and look in the springs area to see if it is there. Boy, that would be a great find if he could come up with that!

Greg is at work and cannot check into this now. He is a firefighter. He was going to get us some pictures of that marking on the door panel, but it was raining. He will be sending more pictures, I am sure, and I will add them to the web page. I hope he will send me a good picture of the Data Plate. I told him to check to see if it looks like it might have been replaced. The original one should have been bradded into place and not screwed on with sheet metal screws. I sent him the graphic that shows the other place that the VIN number was stamped into. According to that graphic, published by Alexander in 2002, it is the passenger side above the firewall on the front cowl. http://www.squarebirds.org/images/vin_location.gif (http://www.squarebirds.org/vbulletin/../images/vin_location.gif)

bird 60
04-18-2009, 09:05 PM
Ray, I tip my hat off to you & the other knowledgeable guys relating to chasing up the authenticity of Gregs Bird.
One would have thought that it would be a straight forward situation, but obviously it's not.
However the end result I hope it finishes on a happy note.
It's shaping up to be like a who dunnit mystery novel.:confused:

Chris....From the Land of Oz.

trim code 76
04-18-2009, 09:36 PM
Guys,
Please excuse my bad memory, the car is at the paint shop as alas there was no way I could save the original paint (It sat rear half outside a carport for 5 years. No rust but the paint was shot). I thought it was ...84, I call the paint shop and they confirmed that it was 92,744. Both data plate nad fender stamping match. The data plate has never been removed has factory rivets. As I told Ray, he has keen eyes....I on the other hand have way to many things going on and a bad memory!!!! Please excuse, that is a number I need to remember. I will take pics of the writting on the door and th "lucky shamrock" on Sunday, got to go, got a call
greg

YellowRose
04-18-2009, 10:27 PM
Hi Greg,

Thanks for solving the "mystery" of the difference in VIN numbers! Hey, if you think your memory is failing you now, wait until you get to my age!:eek: lol.. I have changed the web page to reflect the correct VIN number. I will post the other pictures when Greg takes them and sends them to me.

trim code 76
04-19-2009, 04:02 PM
Off work now!!! YES! I was able to get the pics of the writting on the door , the shamrock and a bubble gum cartoon that was carefully placed next to th shamrock. Please excuse the writting, a little faded but readable. I should have taken a pick of the cartoon and shamrock with the carpeting pulled back. I think I will place them back in position when I get the car back and shoot a "recreation". Hope you all enjoy!
Greg

YellowRose
04-19-2009, 09:05 PM
Greg has sent me the pictures of the markings on the door panel, the Shamrock, Fleer Bubblegum wrapper found under the carpet, and the Data Plate. It is all up on his website now.
Enjoy!

http://squarebirds.fortunecity.com/GregPrince/GregPrince1960Tbird.htm (http://squarebirds.fortunecity.com/GregPrince/TrimCode76%2760Tbird.htm)

frank58
04-19-2009, 09:17 PM
Nice job Ray, I can't stop looking at this all original gem.
Your a lucky guy Greg, she is indeed a beauty.

Richard D. Hord
04-19-2009, 09:28 PM
Congratulation Greg,
What a sweet heart. I agree I would not do no more than I had to get her road worthy. I would say you have a very rare car that no-one else has. Please think about what you have before you do anything to her.
GOOD LUCK!!!

trim code 76
04-20-2009, 01:28 AM
Thanks again Ray and fellow members for the nice comments. Do not worry about me touching the old girl. I am one of those weird unrestored original guys so she stays as she is, not perfect but pretty nice. I was fortunate enough to win on ebay a set of matching date code correct factory mufflers still in the box (Please do not ask what I had to pay!! YIKES$$$). I also have a factory NOS oil filter (white one). Still has the foil over it. Both will be put on the car for shows. The only reproduction part on the car is the battery (good luck finding that!). I will be driving it out to her first show (very carefully, back roads) to the western regional tbird show in Spokane WA. I will meet up with the second owner, lady who had it all but about the first year. She is pretty old but can't wait to see it all spruced up. She said she will either cry, grin or die of a heart attack! I think one of the first two would be fine with me. She is for sure getting a nice ride in it! If anyone is coming out (in July) to the show, please let me know!! Also, again, do not let that 9/13 trick you into thinking it is 7/13 like it did to me. Under careful looking it is a nine, just a very narrow one. Thanks again guys, this has been a fun run on this. If anyone would like to get in touch with me they can email me at gregprince22@hotmail.com. Hope the pics help some of you. As my friend Kevin in England says.....Cheers mates!

YellowRose
04-20-2009, 02:59 AM
You are welcome, Greg. It is important to document this last of the line Tbird. I would give anything to be with you later this year when you meet the lady who owned this car most of its life. What a thrill that is going to be for her and you! You MUST remember to take some pictures with her standing by it, or in it, for posterity. That should be some event. If someone in her family has a PC, you might send them the web page so she can see it.

Coral
04-21-2009, 02:36 AM
While doing research trying to locate the right party to 'verify' this is indeed the last production 'bird...I had a crazy thought...
Ron Pratte, lives in Chandler, AZ and happens to own the First Production 'bird "verified" by Ford themselves.. (which after Ray and I get to this other party, the quest is to continue and have Ford verify THIS car)...anyways, back to my thought...

Why not get a picture of the two sitting together?
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/firsttbirdbj09_lead.jpg

A totally awesome storyline for a couple of authors, one might consider tossing in that Stainless Steel Special!
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/wthr.jpg


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/a0801.gif

trim code 76
04-21-2009, 05:17 AM
Sounds good to me!! I have sent an email to Alan Tast. Hopefully we will hear from him soon.
Greg

nzmuzza
04-21-2009, 05:47 AM
when was the first squarebird produced?

fomoco59
04-21-2009, 08:43 AM
http://automotivemileposts.com/prod1958tbird.html

'58 production dates.

vernz
04-21-2009, 07:11 PM
My cousin works at the Detroit Historical Museum and has access to a lot of information. I'll see if she can find out about any pictures or information that Ford may have relative to the last Squarebird.

Vern

YellowRose
04-21-2009, 08:17 PM
Hi Vernz!

That would be great! I know that Greg would certainly appreciate it and it would be terrific to have the last Squarebird off the line validated by Ford, just as they did the first Thunderbird.

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 12:45 AM
Ok,
Hope I have not board to death everyone on this topic. I just got done talking to Alan Tast and unfortunately there is no way (at this time) to be able to say (by actual Ford documentation) that my car is the last one. There are many things that point that way, but no definative proof. The ROT sheet would help, but alas there is not one I can find on the car. He tends to agree with what Phil Skinner said about the numberical order of the cars going down the line (or lack there of) and that the lighter color cars were done last in the day. The door panel writting is not enough for rock solid proof. So there you go!!! It has been fun, informative and a little frustrating. I guess How I posted this topic is how the car needs to be labeled: "Last Squarebird?" Have a good one everyone and THANK YOU for all the info given. Now lets get out there and drive our birds!!! (wait, oops, mines still in the paint shop!)
Greg

bird 60
04-22-2009, 01:06 AM
Hey Greg,

At this point & time your'e obviousley dissapointed not knowing 100% but remember, the Fat Lady hasn't sung yet & untill she does there is still a possibility.:D

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

Hawkrod
04-22-2009, 01:30 AM
snip

Another interesting thing is that the California Registration form is dated 10/20/60! That is a week from time it came off the line to the day it was registered in California! Interesting again!

snip

I would only add that maybe you were not entirely clear on what I wrote and may want to consider that the car did not come off of the line when you assume it did. The date on the door tag has nothing to do with when a car is actually built, it is the day a car is scheduled to be built when the order was received. that order could easily be 30, 60, or even 90 days old (actually July 1968 428 SCJ Mustang orders were all held until October at the earliest!). Because they really have no idea how orders will come in and how various factors can affect batch building, it is very possible that cars can be built months ahead or behind schedule. Unfortunately with 1966 and older cars we can't do much to reasearch on this but with the records that Ford gave to Kevin Marti we can see the 1967 and newer builds very clearly and can see how the pogram actually worked. Below I have linked to an 1969 428 SCJ Mustang Marti report so you can see what I am talking about. On the right hand side it shows the order was received on 7/31/68 and at that time the serial number was assigned and it was scheduled to be assembled on 10/02/68. Unfortunately for that likely frustrated and angry dealer, the car was not actually built until 12/11/1968 and was then sold on 1/03/69! Unless you have a gate release for that Tbird you have no way to verify the actual build date. It is not impossible that a car built in Wixom could get to a California dealer, get sold and get registered in a week but it certainly is highly unlikely just due to the time it takes California DMV to process paperwork (back then it was all manual with paperwork being mailed to Sacramento and back to the owner! Even today it usually takes longer than a week to process DMV paperwork). Hawkrod

http://home.windstream.net/bowers2/images/documents/scjmarti.jpg

Hawkrod
04-22-2009, 01:57 AM
One more note to help people understand, I see mentioned on the web site that the blue on the driveshaft is noted as an inspection mark. The blue stripe on the driveshaft is not an inspection mark, it is an ID paint stripe. Things like driveshafts and springs came in several different configurations such as different engines and transmissions requiring different length driveshafts or different options such as AC requiring heavier springs etc... to make it easier and less confusing on the assembly line, these common parts, that had several versions, were marked in such a way to ID them easily. If you look at a build sheet under springs or driveshaft it will have a color code that should correspond to the color of the part. That is how cars were built. You have to understand that assembly line workers were not trained craftsman, they were day laborers with a permanent job. They did not need rocket scientists, it was a menial task to build a car. The build sheet would note a blue stripe driveshaft so that was what the guy pulled and installed. That was the specific reason for a build sheet. Below is a build sheet I have linked to from a later Tbird built at Wixom. You will note that some parts will list numbers and some colors or letter codes. If it is a single color then that is what you will see, if it is letters then they represent a series of color marks. Numbers are abreviations of the numbers that will appear on the part. Using the sheet below, we see that the shocks are green so we would see either all green or more likely something like black with a green mark on the original shocks, BU GN on the driveshaft would translate to blue and green stripes (BA is black BR is brown etc... BL is too confusing because it could be black or blue), and finally the 8SEC for the fan would actually translate to a C8SE-8600-C engineering number. Hawkrod

http://www.degeneratepress.com/thunderbird/images/build_sheet.jpg

YellowRose
04-22-2009, 02:18 AM
Thanks, Hawkrod, for providing us with additional information on how things were done at Wixom. It gives us further insight into how the production line was run, and what the line workers went through to build a car. It has all been interesting and fascinating reading. Thanks for the explanation of the ROT sheet also. I am sure we are all learning a lot from this thread! I know I am!

It was Kevin Marti, as I recall, that I talked with last year when I tried to gain more information regarding my '59 Tbird. That is when I found out that when he got the records of the Tbirds, he did not get those from 1966 back, for whatever reason. If we could only find out where those records went to... What a treasure trove that would be..

Coral
04-22-2009, 02:28 AM
Hey Greg,

At this point & time your'e obviousley dissapointed not knowing 100% but remember, the Fat Lady hasn't sung yet & untill she does there is still a possibility.:D

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

Excellent point Chris....


No-where near fat, and can't hold a tune without a sturdy bucket, but I'm not quitting
This is the most fun I've had in about 6 months!

What about the gal that owned the car for so long? Surely she was given paperwork from the original owner/service records and all...not a huge stretch for her to have 'left' the papers tucked away somewhere...since it was closer to the time and all, the First owner might have said "hey this is the last bird" - just a thought

In reference to the ROT....I get the impression these papers are just poked into places - surely not...how would they last?
I would think stuffing it into a place it wouldn't get lost or thrown out by the new owner...under the upholstery, not just wadded in the springs...under the console, above the glove box under the dash kinda thing....or am I over thinking it?

YellowRose
04-22-2009, 02:55 AM
Hi Cathie,

I am glad you are enjoying yourself! I am not giving up on finding more information on Greg's car either! In fact, I know who has the line production records for the 1960 year and am working on that...

You just gave Greg an excellent idea. He knows the lady who owned the car before him. Perhaps he can contact her and find out if there were any paperwork, books, manuals, like the User Manual in the glove box that I had with mine. Maybe she has it with the ROT sheet inside it! Wouldn't that be something? Or with some other records that she forget to pass on to Greg.

Regarding the ROT sheet. It was often in their hands when they were working inside the car because they were using it to finish off the car. As you can see by the one Hawkrod posted, it told them how to build the car. Rather than get out of the car to throw it away, since it was no longer needed once they had the car all finished out, they often just slipped it in the seat springs, under the carpet, in the dash, or other places, where ever they were working when they did not need it any longer. It was printed on thin, cheap paper and was not meant to last. Once they had the car built they did not need it any longer.
Thank you, Cathie....

Hawkrod
04-22-2009, 02:56 AM
Excellent point Chris....


No-where near fat, and can't hold a tune without a sturdy bucket, but I'm not quitting
This is the most fun I've had in about 6 months!

What about the gal that owned the car for so long? Surely she was given paperwork from the original owner/service records and all...not a huge stretch for her to have 'left' the papers tucked away somewhere...since it was closer to the time and all, the First owner might have said "hey this is the last bird" - just a thought

In reference to the ROT....I get the impression these papers are just poked into places - surely not...how would they last?
I would think stuffing it into a place it wouldn't get lost or thrown out by the new owner...under the upholstery, not just wadded in the springs...under the console, above the glove box under the dash kinda thing....or am I over thinking it? You are definitely over thinking it. The build sheets were literally garbage. They served no purpose after a car was built. They were left in the car only because it was cheaper and easier than paying to have trash hauled away. They were never meant to last or even ever be seen again after a car was built. Hawkrod

bird 60
04-22-2009, 03:15 AM
Hey all,
Here's another thought. Some of the guys on the assembly line back in '60 would have been in their late Teens or early twenties. That would make them in their late sixties & early seventies. I'm sure if some how one could get in touch with some-one & get some info. The township of Wixom would be a good place to start. If they have a local paper we can do a bit of a write-up relating to the matter & see if someone puts their hand up.
We're all getting in the picture for you Greg & I still haven't heard the Fat Lady Sing.;)

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 03:30 AM
Hawkrod,
Thanks for the explaination on the driveshaft. Learn something new every day. A couple of things. I am sorry but do not understand about the one week from build to being sold at the dealership?? The built date stamp and writting from the line worker stated 9/13. The car was sold on 10/20. That would be a little more than a month unless I am missng something. I understand what Hawkrod is stating with regards to car vin number and the date a car was actually built.....but I guess I do not understand how the car was built on another date if the inscription on the door panel is for 9/13?? Just wondering. Thanks for the info Hawkrod I see that is what happened on the car you showed on the attached clip. My understanding is that it does seam to be accurate that the dark cars were painted first light colored last. White would be the lightest, then the Platnium (Silver). What I was advised of was that the very last cars were made of leftover parts unless specially ordered. The white 1960 paint I believe was carried over to 1961. The silver color was changed. So the left over silver paint would be shot on the remaining last cars as to use up the supply and being the lightest color not carried over??? Maybe I am getting caught up in this but I do believe the car was made on 9/13 due to the writting on the door panel and the 13W date code. Who knows for sure BUT, THIS JUST OCCURED TO ME!!! I can understand a car being given a vin number earlier in the production line and having it be delayed until later in the year. but I do not understand how a very, very late number car with a build date code stating last day of production can be built earlier. I scratch my head on that one. If someone can make sense out of that one please fill me in!!

bird 60
04-22-2009, 03:32 AM
Something else I forgot to mention which is the most important issue of the lot is to question the Shamrock & Last Day Last Car. That in it's own would mean a lot if the build sheets don't mean anything.:(

Chris

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 03:36 AM
Chris,
Thank you!!!!!!! Kind of fun! Who has the last 59??, first?? How about the first squarebird (58)????????? This could get totally out of control!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!
Greg

bird 60
04-22-2009, 03:45 AM
Greg, don't lose the picture you have a genuine reason to persue the matter, & on a personal note it is a big deal. I would get in touch with Wixom & try & dig something up.
It is very intriguing for a lot of us. You have caught the Fish & now it's a matter of bringing it up. (FAITH):D

Chris

Hawkrod
04-22-2009, 11:16 AM
Hawkrod,
Thanks for the explaination on the driveshaft. Learn something new every day. A couple of things. I am sorry but do not understand about the one week from build to being sold at the dealership?? The built date stamp and writting from the line worker stated 9/13. The car was sold on 10/20. That would be a little more than a month unless I am missng something. I understand what Hawkrod is stating with regards to car vin number and the date a car was actually built.....but I guess I do not understand how the car was built on another date if the inscription on the door panel is for 9/13?? Just wondering. Thanks for the info Hawkrod I see that is what happened on the car you showed on the attached clip. My understanding is that it does seam to be accurate that the dark cars were painted first light colored last. White would be the lightest, then the Platnium (Silver). What I was advised of was that the very last cars were made of leftover parts unless specially ordered. The white 1960 paint I believe was carried over to 1961. The silver color was changed. So the left over silver paint would be shot on the remaining last cars as to use up the supply and being the lightest color not carried over??? Maybe I am getting caught up in this but I do believe the car was made on 9/13 due to the writting on the door panel and the 13W date code. Who knows for sure BUT, THIS JUST OCCURED TO ME!!! I can understand a car being given a vin number earlier in the production line and having it be delayed until later in the year. but I do not understand how a very, very late number car with a build date code stating last day of production can be built earlier. I scratch my head on that one. If someone can make sense out of that one please fill me in!!

Doh, that is a case of not comprehending what I was reading. He said it was a week from 9/13 to 10/20 and I did not even do the math. That is 5 weeks and that is a very, VERY, reasonable time frame. It probably is just as well that I did not catch his mistake because it would not have occured to me to post the other info otherwise. Unfortunately, sometimes we assume that others have a clear and concise understanding of the things we already know. We forget that other people have not been doing this for as long or have as much experience is certain areas. Just because I know something does not mean you do but too many times my mind just thinks "heck, everybody knows that" and I skip what could be important detailed information that could help somebody else. Just a "for example, in the last week I was trying to find the part number for the filler parts for the tail light panel on a 1968 California Special or Shelby Mustang. I looked it up in the books, googled it etc... to no avail. I finally got serious and dug out the old parts books and found it. The part that caught me was the fact that the California Special web site has a page listing all of the specific special parts that were used to build the cars but these four parts were omitted. If I had not shared the info the guys that specialize in these would still not have the numbers and yet they are the very ones I should have been able to go to. Sharing info is what helps us draw a more detailed picture of how these cars were built and how Ford worked back then.

Now having said that, there is another important point that needs to be understood. The reality is there are no "leftover" parts on an assembly line. There is a small number of parts but not the quantity that most people think of. Read this: http://mysite.verizon.net/tcherry3/ford/index_files/editorial.htm. It really is important to understand that parts were ordered nearly daily and that an assembly plant was not a storage warehouse so they usually only have enough parts to build the cars that were scheduled and some percentage of spares to cover damage or failures. The paint issue is moot as any leftover paint is dumped into the vats of slop grey and while the colors you note changed for those models, they may have still been regular colors for other models. Ford only had so many color choices but not every color was used on every line. Basically, the way it usually works is there are a few balance out cars, maybe a couple of dozen at most but usually just a handful that are built with whatever spare parts are left. These cars are often built after the new models are already rolling (they were started as soon as the last scheduled car is started). These are the only cars that are built from scraps and leftovers. The other end of the run cars were scheduled so all of the parts to build them were specifically ordered to do it so there was no need to make them a certain color (which is another issue, color comes early in the assembly process, when the cars get to the end of the line they are often mixed in color).

As far as how a late number with a late schedule can be built earlier, that is easy. The car is ordered. It is an odd color and so is scheduled for batch building later based on the expectation of additional orders coming in between now and the scheduled build date. Now, there is a batch of other cars being built and something happens to delay the assembly (say there is a delivery problem with salmon colored dash pads) so the batch that was supposed to started tomorrow can't be built because the pads won't be in until thursday. Do I stop the line? No, I go to what can be built because the parts are already available. This was quite common because Ford used a "Just In Time" system for parts and any delay stopped the line and "we never stop the line!". Another thing that can move cars ahead is line speed. The line assembly time is pretty much a known quantity. It takes into account new workers being trained, skill level of line workers etc... but what if for some reason you get a group of people who are all very good at what they do and stick together? The line speed is supposed to be 180 cars an hour but what if they kick out 220? The parts guys hate it because they have to move up deliveries but in five days you have picked a full days production. This also happens often enough. Hawkrod

YellowRose
04-22-2009, 11:32 AM
My apologies in making that math mistake! I must have had a "Senior Moment" aka Brain pfffttt! The good thing about that math error is that it caused Hawkrod to post the other interesting information that he had and shared with us! But I do not like to make mistakes.:eek: Yup, that would have been easy for that car to have been on that Hollywood car dealers lot 5 weeks after 9/13!

Back to work for you. I am still hot on the trail of the paperwork for Greg's car. Someone told me that I am like a bulldog when I go on the hunt for information. I do not give up!:D

Coral
04-22-2009, 11:54 AM
You are definitely over thinking it. The build sheets were literally garbage. They served no purpose after a car was built. They were left in the car only because it was cheaper and easier than paying to have trash hauled away. They were never meant to last or even ever be seen again after a car was built. Hawkrod

Gotcha Hawkrod....Thanks.....
"one man's trash is another mans treasure...."

YellowRose
04-22-2009, 01:03 PM
I have been in contact with Kevin Marti's office of Marti Auto fame. I talked with Christy, because Kevin was busy. She told me that when Kevin obtained all those boxes and boxes of Ford production records directly from Lois Emminger before she passed away last year, that the 1950's-early 1960's Tbird records were not there. She did NOT have them. He met with her personally to obtain them. Because of her advanced age she was no longer able to do anything with them.

Christy did say they have some 1962-1966 records though. So for some of you with Bulletbirds, and Flairbirds that might want to get more history on your cars, contact them and give them your VIN number. They might have something on your Tbird. The telephone number listed on the post by Hawkrod is no longer correct. The area code has changed, but the main number is the same. It is now 623-935-2558.

Also, Phil Skinner has left for Dearborn, MI this morning to look for more Edsel records. He is going to make it a point to look for the Squarebird records also while he is there. He also gave me another lead to a company that supposedly has all this information on microfiche.. Does anyone know who the National Auto Theft Bureau is today? They changed their name and I cannot find the new one. Yet.. Phil also said...

"Unfortunately, the daily production records showed the number of cars produced, but not the individual reports. Now, I have heard there are two possible sources for production data, but access is tough.

First, one rumor is that all of the IBM punch cards used to schedule production were put on microfiche. Only a rumor, but my main quest has been for Edsel, so hopes are if I find one, I can find the other. Second is that copies of all invoices were put on microfiche starting with the 1960 model year, and sent to the National Auto Theft Bureau in Chicago, IL. While that organization has changed names, there is a possibility that these records may exist. Still not as good as the Broadcast form. The scheduled date on the data plate (in this case, 13W) is rarely the day the car came off the line.

I have a broadcast form that was pulled out of a 1962 T-bird. It is attached to a 1962 Lincoln Continental. They have consecutive rotation numbers, but their unit sequences are way off (to be expected, two different lines) and their scheduled dates are something like a week apart! The date on the plate is good for having a birthday party, but when the car came off the line, the only way to tell is with the broadcast form. (Greg refers to it as a ROT sheet, either term is correct).

I am at the airport getting ready to head to Dearborn where I will have two days in the archives. I will try to locate the T-bird production records and get copies. When I get back I will also make a copy of the '62 Tbird sheet, even though it isn't 1960, it will still be interesting.

By the way, I have three other cars in my files with build dates of 13W and two of them have higher unit numbers than this one. (Gregs)

0Y71Y192592 63A M 84 13W 4 3 at Kruse Auction, LV 11/06 purchased new by Stardust Hotel
0Y71Y192812 63A M 84 13W 4 3 found on E-bay, in Nebraska 8/06
0Y71Y192834 63A M 86 13W 4 3 Parted in S. Calif, 1980's, (data plate still exists)

BTW, I also found the Edsel daily production records in Dearborn. These listed how many of each model/body style were built at each plant each day. However, even those records are a bit skewed, so realistic documentation will be tough to locate."

I just got an email from Kevin Marti saying that he doesn't know of anything further he can do to help us find more information on the car.

The story continues... The bulldog is still on the hunt!:D

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 03:16 PM
I thank both Phil and Ray very much as this is really getting interesting now!!! I do have a question that just does not make sense to me and if someone can help me out...THANK YOU! Here it is: If Sept. 13 1960 was the last day the squarebird came down the assembly line (I believe that is 100% correct), then how can a car with that stamping on the vin tag refering to when the car is slated to be built (order made??), last day, be built before then???????? This just makes no sense to me. I can see the reverse happening: i.e. that a car with a build date stamping in Jan getting built 5 months later. That I can see as the line is still producing cars, but they totally stopped making the squarebirds at the end of 13W (except for the 2 stainless steel cars, which broke the stampings). Confused on this one!!!!! The examples that have been shown to me all deal with later production than what the stamped date indicates. Not possible here (as far as what little brain I have left can tell!)
Greg

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 03:32 PM
Please excuse....I missed Hawkrods explaination on how the date could have been built earlier. This is very interesting!!! Would have loved to have been there to watch this orginized chaos happen!! Hawkrod, did you work on an assembly line or knew someone who did?? You seem very knowledgable. One thing, just thinking, would the inscription on the door panel be proof that the car was built on 9/13? I would like to at least try and clear that one up. The more I dig into this the more loose threads I find YIKES!!!!!!!!! Stop the insanity! This is fun!
Greg

tbird430
04-22-2009, 06:18 PM
I agree, DON'T GIVE UP! I found someone else's ROT sheet in my '60 Bird years ago when I was installing some new carpet. I tracked the owner down (using the T-Bird Scoop), and he couldn't have been happier!! ;) I felt it was the right thing to do.

So maybe someone will find your ROT sheet (in another car) some day down the road? Who knows. Just don't give up. I will admit though, when I 1st read this thread I was just thinking the door panel note & Shamrock could have simply been the "Last Day" for this assembly line WORKER. I do not think that is the case now (after seing all the pics & reading this entire thread).

Happy hunting,
Jon

P.S.
Make sure you read BOTH pages of this OLD thread on ROT sheets as well. http://www.squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=5183

Hawkrod
04-22-2009, 06:33 PM
Please excuse....I missed Hawkrods explaination on how the date could have been built earlier. This is very interesting!!! Would have loved to have been there to watch this orginized chaos happen!! Hawkrod, did you work on an assembly line or knew someone who did?? You seem very knowledgable. One thing, just thinking, would the inscription on the door panel be proof that the car was built on 9/13? I would like to at least try and clear that one up. The more I dig into this the more loose threads I find YIKES!!!!!!!!! Stop the insanity! This is fun!
Greg

I did not work on the line but have known quite a few people who did. My stint with Ford was very short as I started my own vintage Ford parts business in the early 1980's. I have been doing this for a little while now! LOL. As far as my knowledge, I started researching this type of stuff when I was the technical advisor to the Cougar Club of America in the early 80's and then got deep into it when I started researching early V8 Fords. I had motivation in the fact that a close family friend was Lorin Sorensen (google him) and his words of support and suggestions drove me on (whether he realizes it or not!). I have written a couple of specialty car books, been a constant contributor to many magazines and helped review some of the Early V8 Ford Club restroration guides. I have spent a reasonable amount time in the Ford archives as well as the Detroit Public Library National Automotive History Collection section as well as buying up old paperwork. I have been buying documents long enough now that I was able to get a lot of stuff before it had real value. I even managed to buy up all the persanal paperwork from Ermie Immerso's estate (another one to Google, he was Carroll Shelby's shop foreman) and got quite a bit of Ford internal documents related to the 1960's racing program See the picture posted below, note it is a xerox that is signed off on by Ford engineers and execs, I have stacks of this stuff, not all of it is as exciting though!. Hawkrod

Click on image to see larger picture:

http://mysite.verizon.net/tcherry3/pictures/Ford427.jpg (http://mysite.verizon.net/tcherry3/pictures/Ford4271.jpg)

trim code 76
04-22-2009, 10:59 PM
Hawkrod,
Most impressive I must say!!!! Thank you for all your help and info. I have had a couple of people say, Alan Tast being one, that the writting on the door panel could have been the last door panel set aside for a car in the trim area? BUT thought differently when he took into consideration that "trim code 76" is the rarest interior for the squarebird and probably mine was the only one to go through with that interior that day. So far I think that the door writting stating "last day, last car" is the hardest evidence, that coupled with the fact that that interior is super rare would give I think credit to the fact that that door panel was intended for my car. Hawkrod, what are your thoughts on the writting on the door panel? Excuse if you have stated before and I missed it. A ROT sheet sounds like it would help, I am just too afraid of hurting the carpeting. By the way, I have already checked with the second owner and have already recieved everything she had. I have all reciepts back to 1964 (oil changes, mufflers...) and that is where I got the registration (?) paperwork that is shown on the website made by Ray. Thomas Middelton was the original owner, was the head sound director for Paramount Studios and helped make "The Ten Commandments".. So I have run into a dead end there. I do have every registration piece of paperwork for each year of the car. Unfortunately i do not have the warrentie book. The owners book looks as it has never been opened. The car did come from "Hollywood Ford" of Hollywood CA. This is like the Enigizer bunny.....it just keeps going and going and going......LOL!!!
Greg

chewrocks
04-22-2009, 11:18 PM
This thread is so interesting to me. I find myself checking several times a day for more bits of info as this drama unfolds. I wish it was my car. So far we know for sure that the vin# doesnt always mean that #XXXX1 came off line before XXXX2. I think the writing on the door panel says a lot and because of the lack of production records from ford that it would be very hard to say that this is not the last bird built for 1960. I mean how many other birds out there have the distinction of having "last day, last car" written anywhere on them. The only thing that I can think of that would not make this the last car is this, Lets say 3/4 down the line the door panels go on. Yours is the very last car to have them installed but the car in front of yours got pulled after door panels to wait for something else making it the last car completed.

That being said, I think that the very last car was most likely a big deal for everyone building the squarebird and was treated a little special as dimonstrated by the shamrock placed by the carpet person and the writing on the door panel. Have you looked for any other hidden treasures, under the back seat, trunk mats, behind the dash?

I'll be waiting for the next episode of "The Last Bird"

Anders
04-23-2009, 06:29 PM
I am just too afraid of hurting the carpeting.
At this stage in the drama, theres nothing else to do that to rip off that carpet. The world is waiting!:)

Dan Leavens
04-23-2009, 06:57 PM
Anders I would tend to agree with your statement. This is somewhat like a soap opera only I think it should be called " Tbird-Gate ":cool:

LuckyJay
04-23-2009, 07:23 PM
Here's a cruel thought.... what if the fellow with the grease pencil were retiring or quitting the following day? He may have just been celebrating his "last day...last car". Possible?:confused:

Petrolhead
04-23-2009, 07:26 PM
note it is a xerox that is signed off on by Ford engineers and execs, I have stacks of this stuff, not all of it is as exciting though!. Hawkrod

Hawkrod, I just about wet myself when i saw that image - Thunderbolt! Top of my automotive 'wish list' is building a Tbolt clone, problem is we never got two-door sedans down here in New Zealand so I'd have to import one, and even donor cars look like they're getting costy.

The closest I've come to owning one is looking at this model on by desk each day (it's not bent, it's lens distortion)

Any more cool Thunderbolt stuff you'd like to share, maybe start a new thread?

When I had a '64 Fairlane four-door sedan and a '66 500 390 hardtop I used to belong to the Fairlane Club of American, a guy in the club used to send me photo prints of national events, showing a line of Thunderbolts. Way cool.

Sorry to wander off topic

Alistair

Coral
04-23-2009, 07:34 PM
Anders I would tend to agree with your statement. This is somewhat like a soap opera only I think it should be called " Tbird-Gate ":cool:

Hum....

How about "as the wheel turns"
:cool:

Coral
04-23-2009, 07:45 PM
Here's a cruel thought.... what if the fellow with the grease pencil were retiring or quitting the following day? He may have just been celebrating his "last day...last car". Possible?:confused:

Don't think its cruel at all, this is an investigation to the possibility OF the last production t-bird...historically speaking its had less than a handful of owners, if it WAS the last bird out the door - someone would know, make mention of it on a purposed sale...tell their kids/grandkids/neighbors/SOCIALIZING buddies... think about it....its those little secrets, rumors, gossip that will end up with some proof somewhere...Jimminey I hope so!

however, one must keep in mind the other artifacts found in conjunction, unless the fella was Irish, there would be no need for the Shamrock... ( well not thinking about the gum wrapper, LOL )

Coral
04-23-2009, 07:48 PM
Alistair, that is an incredibly luscious pile of books you have there!

What year is that restoration book?

Hawkrod
04-23-2009, 08:34 PM
Alistair, that is an incredibly luscious pile of books you have there!

What year is that restoration book?

Yeah, I was thinking he snuck in here and took a picture of my desk until I realized they were nice clean new books! LOL Hawkrod

Coral
04-23-2009, 08:45 PM
What Hawkrod...ya go thumbing through yours with greezy fingers?....theres one or two well read spines in there I can see..

Penelope
04-23-2009, 08:46 PM
This is a great thread! I just wish I could bring something to the table - although I can answer Cathie's question re the resto book. It is William Wonders Thuderbird Restoration book readily available from Amazon and of course....feebay (where I got my copy).

Anyway, the next instalment must be due, on with the show!

Hawkrod
04-23-2009, 09:02 PM
What Hawkrod...ya go thumbing through yours with greezy fingers?....theres one or two well read spines in there I can see..
Who me? Almost never! LOL Problem is that for me other peoples trash is my treasure. Look at the picture of the Thunderbolt paperwork I posted. It really is very clean compared to some paperwork I have salvaged. Many of my parts books are actually a ghastly sight because I got them as trash from dealers who were actually throwing them away. I have actually even gone dumpster diving for some of my books and paperwork. I have gone to quite a few dealership closure auctions over the years and they often throw this stuff out assuming nobody wants it! I even have one box of papers that have to be kept in a plastic tub because at some point a bottle of ATF leaked and the papers soaked it up. I have rags between pages and it will be years before they are even remotely dry! LOL Hawkrod

Coral
04-23-2009, 09:44 PM
Who me? Almost never! LOL Problem is that for me other peoples trash is my treasure. Look at the picture of the Thunderbolt paperwork I posted. It really is very clean compared to some paperwork I have salvaged. Many of my parts books are actually a ghastly sight because I got them as trash from dealers who were actually throwing them away. I have actually even gone dumpster diving for some of my books and paperwork. I have gone to quite a few dealership closure auctions over the years and they often throw this stuff out assuming nobody wants it! I even have one box of papers that have to be kept in a plastic tub because at some point a bottle of ATF leaked and the papers soaked it up. I have rags between pages and it will be years before they are even remotely dry! LOL Hawkrod

Ah HA!

YOU are the mysterious cloaked figure seen in the alleys, clinging to the dumpsters!

Nar, what you need to do is use a drying agent, an absorbent of sorts, so you can whisk the water away directly into the new medium...then vacuum or shake it away

Rags will hold the moisture

- if nothing else:
take your book, cover to cover, fan the pages evenly
best deal is into the sunlight at about 140pm - whatever your time zone is...into direct sunlight through windows and air movement for 20 mins.
then rest it - take it out of the lighted area, but still spread open, to where ever - 'shake it and park it'

chewrocks
04-23-2009, 10:37 PM
Here's a cruel thought.... what if the fellow with the grease pencil were retiring or quitting the following day? He may have just been celebrating his "last day...last car". Possible?:confused:

Could be true, but his last day would have been the last day of production ("9-13, Last day, Last car"). So maybe he was having a double good day, finishing his last day by working on the last 60 Bird. If I knew I was going to quit and not be working on the 13th, I would have written 9-12 last day last car.

EDIT... Could be that he quit at noon on the 13th....naw

2 cents

Hawkrod
04-23-2009, 10:42 PM
Ah HA!

YOU are the mysterious cloaked figure seen in the alleys, clinging to the dumpsters!

Nar, what you need to do is use a drying agent, an absorbent of sorts, so you can whisk the water away directly into the new medium...then vacuum or shake it away

Rags will hold the moisture

- if nothing else:
take your book, cover to cover, fan the pages evenly
best deal is into the sunlight at about 140pm - whatever your time zone is...into direct sunlight through windows and air movement for 20 mins.
then rest it - take it out of the lighted area, but still spread open, to where ever - 'shake it and park it'
Unfortunately it is ATF not water. The pages are oil soaked. I change the rags regularly but due to the type of ink used the risk of losing the text is high if we try using solvents to dry the oil. I am hoping to get them clean enough to copy. Hawkrod

Coral
04-23-2009, 10:52 PM
'My Bad....I did recall you said ATF before once I saw it again..sorry...

CAT LITTER....same procedure, shake the litter in heavily, apply a BIT of pressure....let it soak up, shake it out, allow to have the air and sun hit it, and repeat...

Ive used the normal clay litter before ok, and have saved a few books with the clumping kind....

Petrolhead
04-23-2009, 11:03 PM
Alistair, that is an incredibly luscious pile of books you have there!

What year is that restoration book?

Hi Coral

i drive my wife mental for many reasons (car parts in the bedroom etc etc), least of which is a few wardrobes and lots of shelves full of books and magazines. Penelope (bill) is bang on, it's William Wonder's 'Thunderbird Restoration Guide' it covers 58 to 66 and is readily available - I think I got mine with a bunch of manuals from Larry's Tbirds.

That in itself is a story -I purchased my '62 ex San Diego and had it shipped down here to New Zealand. While it was in transit I ordered all the manuals etc from larrys. The books and the car arrived about the same time, bummer was that the '62's previous owner had included a nice big box... of shop manuals.. in the trunk. At least I have a nice new copy of the shop manual that I keep inside, and one can get oily in the garage. Doh!

Petrolhead
04-23-2009, 11:04 PM
(CAT LITTER....same procedure, shake the litter in heavily, apply a BIT of pressure....[/quote]

Just make sure it's new cat litter:)

Mintgreenbird
04-23-2009, 11:14 PM
when a local libary caught on fire many of the books were soaked with water and chemicals used to put out the fire --- the way they restored the books was to freeze dry them --- the process removes all the liquids from the pages with out destroying the print-- maybe this can help you :rolleyes:

JACK

Hawkrod
04-24-2009, 01:15 AM
(CAT LITTER....same procedure, shake the litter in heavily, apply a BIT of pressure....

Just make sure it's new cat litter:)
Thanks, like I really needed that mental image! LOL But the pages could be yellow with brown streaks instead of pink! Ugh! Hawkrod

YellowRose
04-24-2009, 01:25 AM
Jack further informed me while on the phone, that taxidermists now use the freeze dry method to do a lot of their work. So Hawkrod, you might want to call a taxidermist, tell him what your situation is, and see if he is willing to try that method on your book. Jack says the freeze dry method will save the book and not mess up the print. If you need more information, send Mintgreenbird a PM!

trim code 76
04-24-2009, 03:16 AM
Coral,
Who is that cloaked guy behind you in the photo? Is that ....Hawkrod LOL???

When I get the car back I will see if I can lift the carpet a little more. Any ideas on how to do it without ruining the carpet???

Greg

YellowRose
04-24-2009, 03:29 AM
Will some of you guys who have been down the road of pulling up your carpeting in the past please give Greg some guidance on doing it without damaging it? Then he can continue the search for his ROT sheet. I know he wants to keep that carpeting in the excellent condition it still is, but it sure would be good to look under it and see if he can find that sheet.

Greg, if you do find it, take pictures of it immediately as you find it. Take good close ups of it. If it has to be unfolded, be very careful in doing so. Try not to handle it very much at all. It might crumble on you. The paper is thin and about 50 years old now. Get as good photo documentation as you can of it, in place and then once out of the floor area, on a good clean surface. Put it in a large enough ziploc bag for safe keeping once you have photographed it.. If you find it.

JohnG
04-24-2009, 09:15 AM
Coral, Wonder's entire book is on-line!! (alot but not all . . . marketing ploy I guess). You can find it at

http://books.google.com/books?id=bmyANIk7xNsC&pg=PA219&lpg=PA219&dq=1964+THUNDERBIRD+AIR+CONDITIONING&source=web&ots=TOePIXshnw&sig=ax0F-L-Isjy-E1f6uMAd7ESQaDI&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=10&ct=result#PPA21,M1

It's also a great book to own and is on Ebay regulary, among other places.

John

Coral
04-24-2009, 09:51 AM
Thanks John!

Sometimes those books online are previews and don't include all the pages, still it is great resource.
I like to check out a book before I buy them, maybe thats why its online....

Coral
04-24-2009, 10:07 AM
Coral,
Who is that cloaked guy behind you in the photo? Is that ....Hawkrod LOL???

When I get the car back I will see if I can lift the carpet a little more. Any ideas on how to do it without ruining the carpet???

Greg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/****2.gif

I don't think so, I didn't know him....I attended a co-workers wedding, and it was very different; a Renascence theme!
The Reaper took a bunch of pictures with various folks, by the time my friends ran me over there, I had misplaced my Mardi Gras mask, but I was the Mysterious Lady in Black....

On Coral, I can slide my hand under the carpet a bit from under the front seats....but I have no idea if this is normal...

JohnG
04-24-2009, 12:25 PM
on Wonder's book, pages 141-218 are missing but these are past the chapters on Squarebirds, so the on-line materials are great for us 58-60 people!

Coral
04-24-2009, 01:26 PM
Thanks again John....I did save it to my google books library

YellowRose
04-25-2009, 12:39 PM
I have changed the URL name on Greg's 1960 Tbird because that ' I put in it is causing some people problems in loading the page. It is now:

http://squarebirds.fortunecity.com/GregPrince/GregPrince1960Tbird.htm

That should end that problem.

trim code 76
04-26-2009, 02:40 AM
I think we are overworking the poor lad!! Ray, let me se if I understand this: The last day of actual production was 9/9, however there was a schedule build off for 9/12 and 9/13 (to use up the remaining parts). This is very interesting because if you check my list on post about matching glass; my car does not have any matching glass, that is it is all tinted but the brands/types of tinted glass are all diferent, it is all original to the car in original seals. On the engine, one of the heads has a C1 (61 date code, the other has a C0, 60 date code), the intake manifold has a C1 date code to it (all original to the car, never touched). I will be checking more of this when I get a change, but it appears that the car was put together with "leftover parts and some from the 61 parts. This seems that it would go along with the "build off" car. This is REALLY getting interesting now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NOTE, THIS IS A COPY OF MY REPLY ON THE "SQUAREBIRD PRODUCTION LINE INFORMATION" DISCUSSON. Wanted to make sure the people on this site were able to keep up with the pert. info from the "Production Line" site.

YellowRose
04-26-2009, 03:57 AM
Hi Greg,

This thing about actual build dates and scheduled build dates has me confused now, after what Kultulz said in the other post about data plate vs actual dates. This has me fascinated and I am trying to get to the truth of the matter regarding what that 13W on your data plate really represents. I am not sure that the build dates of 9/12 & 9/13 were established to use up remaining parts. I think it was to finish off the production runs. I was told that there were usually no parts left over because Ford ordered exactly what they needed in advance for each production run. What might have happened is once the Lincolns were finished, Phil's records show that they upped the daily production of the Tbirds big time because the Lincolns were done. So maybe they ran through the production run totally by the 9th and shut down instead of continuing the run into the 12th and 13th.

I have seen some ROT sheets with a date in the upper left corner that is earlier than the scheduled build date. If that is the actual build date, that is proof that they often built cars before the scheduled due date came up... Look at Vernz, and also the ones in the TRL.

As to why your glass does not all match, I think Alan Tast covered that in a post. Also, why you would have a C1 part on your engine and a C0, the 1961 Bulletbird had the 390 engine in it, not the 352. Maybe the heads and intake manifolds are the same for both engines. Kultulz or Hawkrod or someone can probably tell us about that.

You should be getting an email from JohnG about how to take up your carpeting. He had to take the seats out, front and back. Your carpets should have been put in with screws.... Original carpet was, and glued along the edges. You will have to look for the screws and take them out. I guess I should have left that to JohnG to tell you! It would be wonderful if you can find a readable ROT sheet, because it should explain a lot.

In the meantime, I am going to contact John Rotella and see if we can find someone who has a 13W on their data plate, and see if any of them have a ROT sheet that we can get a copy of!

Gots to get to bed! As you say, this is all very fascinating to me, you and others:D

Penelope
04-26-2009, 06:25 AM
I did have something similar happen with "last cars" with a 1971XY Ford Falcon Panel Van (for Americans read "delivery van"). My car was very unusual inasmuch as it had many of the next models parts in it including the bench seat (an XA seat for the south of the equator readers) and ignition switch and assembly.

I was quite young at the time and wasnt aware of the significance etc of it until I went to sell it years later and the purchaser suggested it might be the last XY Panel Van or whatever. He vowed to check it out, which he duly did and although Ford did not confirm it to be "the last" they did say it was "one of the last" hence the bits from the next model as they had run out of XY parts.

If you google XY Falcon, the same model in GTsedan mode with handling option (GTHO) now sells for $500,000 plus and are VERY HIGHLY sought after - but not so with the panel van version, or I would still be crying now!

It does however confirm that Greg's car may have been in the last couple and I for one hope it does turn out to be the last one!

bird 60
04-26-2009, 09:21 AM
Hey Bill, you forgot to mention that the 1971 XY GTHO PHASE 3 was the fastest 4 door production car in the world.(FACT) Top speed (with 6,150 rpm rev limiter) 144mph. Top speed (without rev limiter) 155mph.
In 1972 (4) Phase 4s were produced 3 for racing don't know about the 4th maybe Ford Australia has it in their museum.
They had a top speed of 175mph.:eek:
Just a little more of Australiana.

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

KULTULZ
04-26-2009, 10:01 AM
Hi Greg,

This thing about actual build dates and scheduled build dates has me confused now, after what Kultulz said in the other post about data plate vs actual dates.

NOTE: Do not take what I post as absolute gospel. I have misnomers and make mistakes just like everyone else. I don't know every detail and never say never regarding FOMOCO. They have a set system but break it very often when using assembly parts. I am just an enthusist and don't want to interfere with what your gurus find about FOMOCO.

The stamped build date should be the actual build day of the car but things happen on the line. It may be scheduled to receive a certain accessory say, the line has run out and the car is sidelined until it can be equipped so. This is one reason you may have ordered a car in the past and it does not come assembled as ordered. FORD may or may not stop the line.

The using of next year model assembly parts is not that uncommon either. I worked crash parts for years and they are not always assembled as the MPC indicates.

Also, why you would have a C1 part on your engine and a C0, the 1961 Bulletbird had the 390 engine in it, not the 352. Maybe the heads and intake manifolds are the same for both engines. Kultulz or Hawkrod or someone can probably tell us about that.

This is very interesting. There is no way in the vehicles service history the engine may not have been changed, even warranty?

I would find every Casting/Stamping I.D. No. on that engine I could (Trans Plate too) to document it. The engines came assembled from engine plants and any such variation would have to been approved and documented for future service. The actual engine tag would be invaluable in this instance.

YellowRose
04-26-2009, 02:12 PM
Thanks for the reply, Gary! It will be interesting to see what Phil Skinner has to say about the date stamped on the data plate.

Greg said he has all the records on the maintenance of the car over the years, as I recall. If so, those records should indicate if the engine was ever changed out under warranty or otherwise, or if parts on that engine were replaced. Would parts he referenced as marked C1 (for a 390 engine, I gather) work on a C0 car? Maybe those were universal. I dunno, but I bet you do!

Perhaps Greg can do as you said, record every Casting and Stamping I.D. No. on that engine and the Trans plate also. It would be great if he can locate the Engine plate too. We will see what he can come up with.

Thanks for the input.

Coral
04-27-2009, 05:02 PM
Sorry...too many windows open

DKheld
04-28-2009, 09:40 AM
The Stainless Steel Bird has a VIN "0Y71Y166729 " and date '08F'. (June 8,1960).....

Just as info the build sheet I found in the back seat of my original owner car says it was scheduled to be built Aug. 24, 1960 - (24H) 0Y71Y186576 - 2 months and 19,847 cars later than the SS's.
All I found when I took the back seat out of my Tbird (other than the ROT sheet) was a 1963 penny. ;-)

Eric
Registry 5347

trim code 76
04-28-2009, 09:25 PM
I hope Ray does not mind me posting this out of a private email but this really made my day. Thanks again to Ray



Hi Greg,

I received another email from Phil Skinner. He is still looking into records for us. But the last thing he said in his email to me was this...

"Also, for the record, I would say for all intents, that Prince's '60 T-bird is more than likely what he hopes it is, the last 1960 T-bird off the line.
Phil"

Best Regards,

Ray

trim code 76
04-28-2009, 09:32 PM
One other thing, I just recieved an email from Kevin in England who went into his back stash of Thunderbird Illistrated from 1975. They had on article in it about line workers on the squarebird. Please check out what he said:

It states on an interview with LINE WORKERS!!! that the stainless Steel Birds went down the line on the MONDAY 11TH JULY 1960!!!. with other Squarebirds!!!! so they WERE NOT LAST OFF THE LINE.

Just thought you might find this interesting as we continue to learn more and more on what happened during this run of '60 birds. I always thought they broke some of the stampings when they made the stainless birds, GUESS NOT!!!

bird 60
04-28-2009, 10:26 PM
Greg you're spot on.:D Even though I was led to believe that the Stainless T. Bs were the last to be made in fear of damaging the tooling, the "11th of july is correct.":D

Chris....From the Land of OZ.

Hawkrod
04-28-2009, 10:27 PM
One other thing, I just recieved an email from Kevin in England who went into his back stash of Thunderbird Illistrated from 1975. They had on article in it about line workers on the squarebird. Please check out what he said:

It states on an interview with LINE WORKERS!!! that the stainless Steel Birds went down the line on the MONDAY 11TH JULY 1960!!!. with other Squarebirds!!!! so they WERE NOT LAST OFF THE LINE.

Just thought you might find this interesting as we continue to learn more and more on what happened during this run of '60 birds. I always thought they broke some of the stampings when they made the stainless birds, GUESS NOT!!!
Somehow I think we are mixing up the information we are getting. We know that the stainless birds were the last bodies built due to the damage they imposed on the tooling. Well, first thing I would say to that is "since when did Ford only have one set of body stamps?". Knowing that Ford was making as many Tbirds as they did we have to assume there were many duplicate body dies, not just one set. There were hundreds of sets for Mustang body panels! Now having said that, I would be shocked if the stainless birds were not the last bodies assembled. Just due to the way the bodies are assembled they really were likely to be the last bodies built. And now again, having said that we have to talk about ROT numbers and sequential numbers. Remember, in the past, we have discussed the fact that there was no relationship between ROT and serial numbers? Well, this would be exactly how you would expect it to be. There would be no reason that the stainless cars had to be assembled last once the body was built. Assembly of the cars would continue once the bodies were built and the cars would be inserted into the line for final assembly based on the ROT number not based on the fact that they were the stainless steel cars. There may have been some assembly issues that were more difficult because of the stainless such as putting in self tapping screws but other than that there really was no specific reason for the cars to be last that I can see. The stainless cars could easily have entered the line right after welding because they would not need to go to prep and paint and would not be sealed and undercoated (assumption on my part). This would translate into a couple of finished bodies that would be days ahead of painted bodies assembled immediately before the stainless cars so they would get final assembly sooner. Just my rambling thoughts so take them for what they are worth, Hawkrod

JohnG
04-28-2009, 11:32 PM
Would the welding of the stainless bodies have been done within the plant or at Budd?? I ask this assuming that stainless steel welding is a different operation than ordinary steel welding.

In any event, once you have complete bodies (metal portion) inside the plant, were they not just "2 more bodies" and therefore could be anywhere in the flow of cars?

trim code 76
04-28-2009, 11:44 PM
I have to say, this is REALLY getting interesting! I have really learned a lot. I think it would make sense that there were more than one set of dies for the body panels. I always thought the stainless cars were the very last. I do not know how much more there will be that will come out of this but we will have to see. Just to let you know, I just got done talking to a reporter from the Wixom area that Ray set up. She interviewed myself and Ray (I think) and is going to do a story on the car to see if anyone is still around that worked in the plant that can shed some more light...........so hold onto your horses.......ah I mean BIRDS, there very well may be more to come!!!
Greg

Alan H. Tast, AIA
04-28-2009, 11:45 PM
My understanding of what happened with the stainless cars was that their panels were not stamped until AFTER the last of the panels for regular production were pounded out. If you read the Thunderbird Illustrated article on the stainless cars it notes that stamping of stainless parts was made difficult due to the hardness of the material versus carbon steel. This would mean that enough panels were stockpiled by Budd to complete over a month's production.

Here's the challenge to those of you with late-production 'Birds. I'm not sure about Budd-built bodies, but there may be a stamping date code on you inner panels (hood, cowl, inner door structure, inner trunk, etc.). Look for numbers/letters stamped into your inner sheet metal and post those codes along with the dates on your data plate and ROT if you found one. There may be a pattern waiting to be discovered.

Coral
04-29-2009, 02:03 AM
I hope Ray does not mind me posting this out of a private email but this really made my day. Thanks again to Ray



Hi Greg,

I received another email from Phil Skinner. He is still looking into records for us. But the last thing he said in his email to me was this...

"Also, for the record, I would say for all intents, that Prince's '60 T-bird is more than likely what he hopes it is, the last 1960 T-bird off the line.
Phil"

Best Regards,

Ray

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/happydance2.gif

trim code 76
04-29-2009, 04:06 AM
Thanks Cathie (Coral)!! Your little cheering icon cracks me up!!!

vernz
04-29-2009, 11:41 AM
Greg, As I write this I'm at my folks house which is a mere 13 miles from Wixom. Let me know what paper the article will appear in and when. I'll keep an eye out.

Vern

Coral
04-29-2009, 12:04 PM
Greg, As I write this I'm at my folks house which is a mere 13 miles from Wixom. Let me know what paper the article will appear in and when. I'll keep an eye out.

Vern

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/coffee1.gif

Say Vern....there is a museum somewhere around there......supposedly have a research archive available....
http://www.milfordhistory.org/

;)

vernz
04-29-2009, 12:04 PM
One other thing that seems appropriate for this string..........the final car produced at the Wixom assembly plant (closed in 2007).

Vern

YellowRose
04-29-2009, 01:03 PM
Ohhh! Please dont get me started on another paper trail chase for the Last Car At Wixom!:eek: Luckily, it cannot be a Tbird, so I should be safe! But look at that picture and you can see how they paint striped the drive shaft for ID purposes. That is how they did things on our Tbirds so they would know which unit was scheduled for each car. As you saw in the pictures on Gregs car, there were a lot of ID stripes on it.

Now to answer your question about which paper the news article being put together will appear in, it is The Oakland Press. http://www.theoaklandpress.com/ It covers the Wixom area. You can read the paper online. The reporter should be interviewing Phil Skinner today, who is still in the area there doing research. The editor wants to wrap up this story and get it ready for publishing. Hopefully, this coming week.

We are hoping there is someone still alive after all these years, who used to work the Wixom or Budd lines, too, for that matter, who can give us some good information. We will see!

vernz
04-29-2009, 05:41 PM
Great. My folks get the Oakland press. If I'm gone when it comes out, they will have it. The last car at Wixom was a Lincoln and the article that accompanied the picture stated it was going to an individual in Washington DC. I don't know if Milford will have any material on the Ford Wixom plant...but never say never. Today I'll be seeing my cousin who prepares exhibits at the Detroit Historical Museum. She may have access to some material that could help us.

Vern

trim code 76
04-29-2009, 10:44 PM
With regards to the picture posted of the woman at Wixom above, I find the "Last Car" part of what she wrote rather ironic!!!
Greg

Coral
04-30-2009, 03:02 AM
With regards to the picture posted of the woman at Wixom above, I find the "Last Car" part of what she wrote rather ironic!!!
Greg

Not to mention WHY is she SMILING?
I would be bawling my eyes out....loosing my job, friends, co-workers... :rolleyes: shoulda seen me last year of middle and high school...TALK about a mess!http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/****2.gif

Coral
04-30-2009, 10:28 AM
Great. My folks get the Oakland press. If I'm gone when it comes out, they will have it. The last car at Wixom was a Lincoln and the article that accompanied the picture stated it was going to an individual in Washington DC. I don't know if Milford will have any material on the Ford Wixom plant...but never say never. Today I'll be seeing my cousin who prepares exhibits at the Detroit Historical Museum. She may have access to some material that could help us.

Vern

It's just a thought Vern, because of the Pettibone Power Station.... Fords carburetor plant - however your cousin is certainly in a Great building!
:)

LuckyJay
05-04-2009, 08:58 PM
Another final production run Squarebird: After replying to this thread erroneouslly concerning our 60 HT as dated 13v. It now turns out I misread the date code as v instead of w. My eyes aren't what they used to be. I took a rubbing of the data plate and it CLEARLY says 13W. Boy am I sorry for the error but elated at the history. The vin is 0Y71Y192652.

YellowRose
05-06-2009, 12:54 PM
The Oakland Press has published the story of Greg Prince's "9/13 Last Day Last Car" 1960 Thunderbird. Now we will see if anyone still alive, who worked the line back then, reads it and responds.

http://www.theoaklandpress.com/articles/2009/05/05/news/local_news/doc4a0005ae0b36c748655789.txt

Coral
05-06-2009, 02:32 PM
While this is fantastic, I was kinda disappointed in the article as it was written, its whats referred to as a 'dry read' .......kinda like "just the facts ma'm"

It would be WAY kewl to have someone claim that writing....
:D

tbirds8
05-06-2009, 08:04 PM
Good read. Just the facts ma'm. Gota love it. Tell that guy it's bucket not can. My Father did that 40 years ago. I'd be getin him outa jail these days with the way cars run now.

Coral
05-07-2009, 02:29 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v359/astikennels/002925231.gif


Good read. Just the facts ma'm. Gota love it. Tell that guy it's bucket not can. My Father did that 40 years ago. I'd be getin him outa jail these days with the way cars run now.

trim code 76
05-07-2009, 03:46 AM
Ok, we have casted out our bait, lets see if we get a nibble!! Big thanks to all (Ray!) for helping out with this. If nothing more comes out of this I feel pretty sure the car was the last one now, but to be correct a little (?) needs to be included! Thanks to all who have contributed on this! I think we have all learned an a lot (including the stainless birds). I just checked on the bird and she will be recieving her enamel paint next week. LOOKING VERY GOOD! Will post the pics (to Ray) when she is done
Greg
Ray, busy week this week, will try and call next!

trim code 76
05-12-2009, 03:03 AM
Just a quick update. I did more checking for the ROT sheets today when I went to visit the car. NO LUCK! I have run out of places to look. I did find a rather neat treasure; wired to the top of the center bracket for the grill assemebly was a ring and a set of original keys to the car! The ends were taped together with old cloth tape. They are pretty tarnished so they have been there for a very long time. The car is being painted this week, went up to ok the color. I have sent Ray some pics of the car. Maybe he will post them. I will send pics when the paint job is done. The painter stated that painting old single stage metalic paint is a real challenge. Guess the old guys were pretty good not having to rely on clear coats and all.

#137 shows another assembly line mark, #142 - 145 show the area up inside the front fender in front of the wheel well (just behind the front bumper) NO RUST!!! The semi gloss black object this the back of the headlight bucket

Greg

GTE427
07-09-2009, 05:44 PM
Both T-Birds received mechanical and interior restorations in the 1980s and survive to this day, with one on permanent display at the Heinz History Center (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Heinz_History_Center) in Pittsburgh, PA (http://www.squarebirds.org/wiki/Pittsburgh,_Pennsylvania).



I'm in Pittsburgh this weekend visiting family and planned a stop at the Heinz History Center, I looked at their website and found a 'Stainless Steel Car' link for a video, didn't play for me. Then called their main phone number, the person claimed they do not nor never had a Stainless TBird. Either he is un-informed or the car isn't there. Anyone have anymore info on the where-abouts of this TBird? Any help would be appreciated.

YellowRose
07-09-2009, 06:17 PM
Without digging deeply into this threads 11 pages, to find out what I said, this web page of Allegheny Ludlum says one of the 1936 staineless steel cars is at Heinz, not a Tbird. I might have made a mistake in reporting or picked up an incorrect reference. It says that Allegheny Ludlum says they have both Tbirds still. My apologies, if I got it wrong.

http://www.alleghenyludlum.com/pages/companyinfo/stainlesscars.asp

GTE427
07-09-2009, 06:19 PM
I may have my answer. The Crawford Museum in Ohio list the Stainless TBird they have on display is on loan from the Heinz Center.

Where are the two cars loctaed. I thought one was in Pittsburgh and the other in Cleveland, is this the same car? What about the second one? Sorry for not searching this site on my own, trying to spend time with the family and not too much time on-line.

GTE427
07-09-2009, 06:22 PM
Thanks Ray, I'll check back later to see if there is more info.

YellowRose
07-09-2009, 06:27 PM
Hi Ken,

I think the other one is in Detroit at one of the museums there. At least William Wonder says it was. These two Tbirds were moved around a lot in their earlier years. They could have been moved again. He said they were based in Pittsburg and Detroit. We know that one of them is/was at the Crawford Museum, last I heard.

Coral
07-09-2009, 06:56 PM
I may have my answer. The Crawford Museum in Ohio list the Stainless TBird they have on display is on loan from the Heinz Center.

Where are the two cars loctaed. I thought one was in Pittsburgh and the other in Cleveland, is this the same car? What about the second one? Sorry for not searching this site on my own, trying to spend time with the family and not too much time on-line.

No need to apologize Ken, we can indeed find handy links for a quick looky-lou - BUT if yer kids / family members are wanting / trying to be more apart of yer life, or you are wanting to share this experience with them you might very well include them on this search!
However, that being said, if everyone else thinks cars are JUST machines...best let sleeping dogs lie...and do yer surfing on the sly...

I will find those Birds locales for you.....