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  #11  
Old 12-28-2017, 11:57 AM
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Default 1960 Squarebird Daily/Monthly Production Info

Hi Martin, no, it appears his Data Plate is correct. Here is the sequence of events on the 1960 Squarebird production. Production started on September 8, 1959, the first year of production. So H would have been stamped on those Data Plates made in September, 1959. Production ended on September 9th, 1960, with that Month being the 2nd Year of production for the 1960 Squarebirds, hence the W, as seen on Squarebirds made in the 2nd year of production during the month of September, 1960... It gets confusing since Eric's Tbird was made towards the end of production in August, 1960, (which was the FIRST month of production for that month!), being the 86,576th Squarebird made out of 92,843 made in 1960, nearly at the END of 1960 Production. ALL 1960 Tbirds produced during the second month of September, in 1960 were coded as a W, since production started in September, 1959 as an H. Of the 1960 Squarebirds produced with near ending production serial numbers, in the 2nd month of September, all that I have seen were coded on the ROT/Build Sheet and Data Plate as a W. Case in point...

Greg Prince's 1960 Ford Thunderbird Hardtop has been certified as being the very last Squarebird off the production line for the 1960 production run. Data plate info: #OY71Y192744 (#92,744). Body:63A, Color:Z, (Light Gray Metalic ~ Sales Name Platinum) Trim:76, (Black/Light Gray) Date:13 W, Trans:4, Axle:3. 13 W was scheduled for the last day of production. However, as previously noted, management made the decision to shut down on 9 September. There are a number of Squarebirds out there with production dates beyond 09 W on them, like his... And like Garth's, 91,678, scheduled for production on the last day on 09 W, September, 1960, but when I ran the numbers on his serial number it comes up as having been made on the 6th because they were ahead of production. If he has found his ROT/Build Sheet, that should tell him the actual build date.

I am aware that there are some discrepancies in the 1960 Daily/Monthly Production Data that was supplied to me. For whatever reason, there were a missing daily report for several dates in the report. For Oct. 3, 1959, a Saturday, IF there was Saturday production, the report was missing. On Oct. 17, 1959, another Saturday, there were 240 cars scheduled, but not a one was made according to the data. So there may not have been any production at all on that date. On Nov. 9, 1959, Monday, there is a Report Missing listed for that date. On Nov. 16, 1959, another Monday, there is another Report Missing listed for that date. On February 12 & 13th, a Friday & Saturday, there are no Tbirds scheduled or produced those two days (or he was not provided the records for those dates). In March, 1960 no production was scheduled for Saturdays. The same applies with April, with the addition that on Friday 15th, they were also shut down for some reason. In May, they were also shut down on production on Saturdays, except on Saturday, the 21st, they produced 442 Tbirds. On May 30th, a Monday, there was another Report Missing. During June, 1960 there was no Saturday production scheduled. In July, it really gets strange. On July 1st, there is scheduled production for 427 Tbirds to be built with 457 actually built. Then from July 5-17 there are no indication of any Tbirds being scheduled or built AT ALL... I do not know if the Reports are Missing, or for some reason, they had shut down... But on the 18th, they are back in full production again producing some 20+ Tbirds a day over the number scheduled. In August, there is no Saturday production scheduled. In Sept. 1960, they completed production and shut down the line on the 9th, instead of the 13th. According to the various records

Phil Skinner of Kelley Blue Book fame was able to obtain this Data for me from friends at Ford back in 2010! He is aware that the sub-totals do not always match up correctly, and that he may be missing some days of data. He was trying to see if he could correct that. I need to get back with him about that.

Over the years, there have been some discrepancies in the total numbers of 1960 Squarebirds produced. Wiki, Automotive Mile Posts, and the VTCI and others have always listed it at 92,843. For some reason, Hemmings lists it as 92,456, and Tbird.org at 90,843 (which I think is a typo on the 90...) The consensus seems to be that the official total is 92,843, which IS the number, as I recall, that Phil Skinner gave me that he was provided by his friends at Ford...
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  #12  
Old 12-28-2017, 12:53 PM
OUR5T8BIRD OUR5T8BIRD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YellowRose View Post
Hi Martin, no, it appears his Data Plate is correct. Here is the sequence of events on the 1960 Squarebird production. Production started on September 8, 1959, the first year of production. So H would have been stamped on those Data Plates made in September, 1959. Production ended on September 9th, 1960, with that Month being the 2nd Year of production for the 1960 Squarebirds, hence the W, as seen on Squarebirds made in the 2nd year of production during the month of September, 1960... It gets confusing since Eric's Tbird was made towards the end of production in August, 1960, (which was the FIRST month of production for that month!), being the 86,576th Squarebird made out of 92,843 made in 1960, nearly at the END of 1960 Production. ALL 1960 Tbirds produced during the second month of September, in 1960 were coded as a W, since production started in September, 1959 as an H. Of the 1960 Squarebirds produced with near ending production serial numbers, in the 2nd month of September, all that I have seen were coded on the ROT/Build Sheet and Data Plate as a W. Case in point...

Greg Prince's 1960 Ford Thunderbird Hardtop has been certified as being the very last Squarebird off the production line for the 1960 production run. Data plate info: #OY71Y192744 (#92,744). Body:63A, Color:Z, (Light Gray Metalic ~ Sales Name Platinum) Trim:76, (Black/Light Gray) Date:13 W, Trans:4, Axle:3. 13 W was scheduled for the last day of production. However, as previously noted, management made the decision to shut down on 9 September. There are a number of Squarebirds out there with production dates beyond 09 W on them, like his... And like Garth's, 91,678, scheduled for production on the last day on 09 W, September, 1960, but when I ran the numbers on his serial number it comes up as having been made on the 6th because they were ahead of production. If he has found his ROT/Build Sheet, that should tell him the actual build date.

I am aware that there are some discrepancies in the 1960 Daily/Monthly Production Data that was supplied to me. For whatever reason, there were a missing daily report for several dates in the report. For Oct. 3, 1959, a Saturday, IF there was Saturday production, the report was missing. On Oct. 17, 1959, another Saturday, there were 240 cars scheduled, but not a one was made according to the data. So there may not have been any production at all on that date. On Nov. 9, 1959, Monday, there is a Report Missing listed for that date. On Nov. 16, 1959, another Monday, there is another Report Missing listed for that date. On February 12 & 13th, a Friday & Saturday, there are no Tbirds scheduled or produced those two days (or he was not provided the records for those dates). In March, 1960 no production was scheduled for Saturdays. The same applies with April, with the addition that on Friday 15th, they were also shut down for some reason. In May, they were also shut down on production on Saturdays, except on Saturday, the 21st, they produced 442 Tbirds. On May 30th, a Monday, there was another Report Missing. During June, 1960 there was no Saturday production scheduled. In July, it really gets strange. On July 1st, there is scheduled production for 427 Tbirds to be built with 457 actually built. Then from July 5-17 there are no indication of any Tbirds being scheduled or built AT ALL... I do not know if the Reports are Missing, or for some reason, they had shut down... But on the 18th, they are back in full production again producing some 20+ Tbirds a day over the number scheduled. In August, there is no Saturday production scheduled. In Sept. 1960, they completed production and shut down the line on the 9th, instead of the 13th. According to the various records

Phil Skinner of Kelley Blue Book fame was able to obtain this Data for me from friends at Ford back in 2010! He is aware that the sub-totals do not always match up correctly, and that he may be missing some days of data. He was trying to see if he could correct that. I need to get back with him about that.

Over the years, there have been some discrepancies in the total numbers of 1960 Squarebirds produced. Wiki, Automotive Mile Posts, and the VTCI and others have always listed it at 92,843. For some reason, Hemmings lists it as 92,456, and Tbird.org at 90,843 (which I think is a typo on the 90...) The consensus seems to be that the official total is 92,843, which IS the number, as I recall, that Phil Skinner gave me that he was provided by his friends at Ford...
You got me on the production that late in the model year Ray. Of the 150 or so '60's listed in my directory, I have nothing with a production date with a ' W ' . Was of the understanding that the months went from " A " to " M " with ' I ' not being used . There must be another reason for the use of the " W" that late in the production year . The highest number I show has a production date of " H " which is August 1960 of course and " J " being September .

As for the total production for 1960 , I have the Model year for 1960 from Ford " Automotive Assembly Division, General Office "
showing total production quantity as 92,843 .
Body type 63A , 2 Dr. hardtop as 78,447 ; Body type 76A , convertible as 11,860 ; And Body type 63B , 2 Dr. Golde Top as 2,536 . ( Yes, on paper it shows the Gold Top as " 63B " )
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  #13  
Old 12-28-2017, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by OUR5T8BIRD View Post
You got me on the production that late in the model year Ray. Of the 150 or so '60's listed in my directory, I have nothing with a production date with a ' W ' . Was of the understanding that the months went from " A " to " M " with ' I ' not being used . There must be another reason for the use of the " W" that late in the production year . The highest number I show has a production date of " H " which is August 1960 of course and " J " being September .

As for the total production for 1960 , I have the Model year for 1960 from Ford " Automotive Assembly Division, General Office "
showing total production quantity as 92,843 .
Body type 63A , 2 Dr. hardtop as 78,447 ; Body type 76A , convertible as 11,860 ; And Body type 63B , 2 Dr. Golde Top as 2,536 . ( Yes, on paper it shows the Gold Top as " 63B " )
It is confusing. I always assumed that First year of production indicates cars built in 1959 (Sept-Dec; J-M) and Second year of production indicates cars built in 1960 (Jan-Sept; N-W). Obviously that's not correct as Eric's car with that serial number was built in August of 1960 and not 1959.

John
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  #14  
Old 12-28-2017, 01:23 PM
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Here's a copy of the ROT from the first Squarebird I ever owned. It appears to have been built in August of 1960 also. I can only assume that any cars built after August of 1960 got the W date letter and were considered "second" year of production.

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  #15  
Old 12-28-2017, 04:06 PM
OUR5T8BIRD OUR5T8BIRD is offline
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Originally Posted by jopizz View Post
Here's a copy of the ROT from the first Squarebird I ever owned. It appears to have been built in August of 1960 also. I can only assume that any cars built after August of 1960 got the W date letter and were considered "second" year of production.

John
See what you are saying John . So ' second ' year would be exceeding a 12 month year of production or start to finish and could overlap the '61 model year production start in the case of the 60's to complete the orders for the 1960. It was a big year with over 90,000 orders . Then all the Lincolns mixed in with the Birds . Busy times at Wixom .
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  #16  
Old 12-28-2017, 05:52 PM
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Assembly plant production is very complicated. Sometimes the plant shuts down because 'stock' is missing. For instance, they run out of steering columns or rear ends (or a thousand other components). Then, all of a sudden, the train pulls in with box cars full of what ever was in short supply.

If sales are in high demand, Saturday production schedules are forecast to make up for 'production lost' during the week. This is costly because everyone makes 'time-and-a-half' all day Saturday and double time on Sunday regardless of how many hours were worked during M-F.

Then, there are breakdowns... If the lines cannot be operational within a line relief-period or 1/2-hr lunch, management will send the entire plant home. At times, Wixom lost electrical power in the middle of production. Same story.

Normally, an assembly plant has ~1,000 cars 'in process' but Wixom had fewer because the Squarebird Body Shop was 50 miles away at Budd in Detroit. Budd also supplied the VIN numbers because some were stamped in sub-assembly locations that could not be accessed later in the build (like inside the cowl top).

SB bodies originated at Ford in Wixom's Paint Dept. They arrived by truck but not always in order of the VIN. Most were but some were not. That's where the Scheduling Dept., had a challenge generating the rotation sheets. This is a forecast that all departments received so they could make sub-assemblies in the correct order as hard tops and convertibles came down the same line. They never cued two convertibles back-to-back.

Do not go by the VIN for the build date, that is an estimate. Always count on the Rotation Sheets because those three-digit numbers were generated when the cars were in the plant, going to 'Paint', and they remained on the body and in order until the car went out the door.

There is NO overlap from year to year. When the last car for that model year is built, all the stock is removed from the production lines and sent to Ford's parts depots. The bare lines are thoroughly cleaned, painted, re-lit, fans are taken down and cleaned, etc. Sometimes Process Engineers juggled operations around the line, depending on 'head counts' vs line speeds that are strictly authorized by World Headquarters according to sales. Only THEN, will Material Handling stock the line with new parts.

You can see why Ford cannot mix model year cars or use different year parts on the same assembly line (like 1958 grilles on 1959 SBs). Only 'carryover parts' are retained in the plant (like suspensions, rear ends, engines, brakes, exhaust systems, etc.) - Dave
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  #17  
Old 12-28-2017, 08:57 PM
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Default 1960 Squarebird Daily/Monthly Production Info

Thanks for all the comments and info. Ford was going by the Month designator. For example, IF management had decided to start the production on the Squarebird on 3 January, 1959, the Date Code would have 03 A. In fact, in 1958, due to the build out of the 1957 Tbird, and Wixom starting production on the 1958 Squarebird, production on the '58 started late, on Dec. 20, 1957- thru Sep. 16, '58. With only 35,758 Ht's built, and only 2,134 convertibles, which is why the '58 Convertible in particular, is considered to be pretty rare! So, going by the Month Of Manufacture By All Years list, a 1958 Tbird that came off the line on Dec. 20 to the end of December, should have a M code next to the Date # 20 M on the Data Plate AND the ROT/Build Sheet... And a '58 made in January, 1958, should have an A date code, because it was in the first year of production run, but I have not researched that..

For the '59 Production run, it started Oct. 17, 1958, about a month later, after the end of the '58 Production run. Probably because, as Dave said, to clean the equipment, restock, re-light, etc.. '59 Production ended on Aug. 22, 1959 with 57,195Ht's, and 10,261 Convertibles. Nearly double the number of Ht's, and about five times the number of Convertibles.

For the '60 Production run, it started on Sep. 8, 1959, about 2 weeks after the '59 Production ended. Again, probably because of what Dave said about cleaning up the plant for the next years run of cars. '60 Production ended on Sept. 9, '60, though they were planning on running through the 13th, as the Data Plates indicates. Which explains why people get confused over the Month codes. Sept. '59 was the first Month of production for the '60 Tbird, making it a Date Code of J... 12 months later, starting in Sept. '59, takes us to the month of August (the 12th month) Date Code H, with Production still going into September...The 2nd year of production... Hence the Date Code W, for the use of September for the second time... Production was at a great high of 92,843, with 78,447 Ht's, 11,860 Convertibles and 2,536 Sun Roof/Golde Tops. Which explains why the latter are considered to be fairly rare these days. BTW, during 1958-1960, at the same time they were building Squarebirds on that Wixom line, they were also building 1960 Lincolns, through 8-30-60 when they shut down the Lincoln Production run, 24,820 of them.

As Dave said, there was no overlap of years. BTW, 1961 Bulletbird production did not start until Oct. 3, 1960, about three weeks after 1960 shutdown.. He also gave us some good reasons why production might have been shut down, as it appears it might have been in 1960. Production of one year ended and after several or more weeks, when they were all cleaned up, stocked up with parts, they started the new year of production.
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Last edited by YellowRose : 12-28-2017 at 11:17 PM. Reason: Additional Information
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  #18  
Old 12-29-2017, 03:25 PM
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just to add a little more confusion.......my 58 has a 352 with solid lifters, it appears it was a "transplant" from a full size Ford. The casting dates and assembly dates are all 7A numbers. confusing at first because there were no 352's made in Jan of 1957..... the 7A translates to November of 1957
this info supplies by Alan Tast.
"The "A" in the codes is for the month of November for both the assembly and casting dates. Ford apparently was in a transition period during the fall of 1957 on how to date-code their castings and assemblies, as the second digit used numbers from 1-9 for January-September, 0 for October, A for November and B for December. With this being the case, a mid-late November '57 assembly date would make sense for an early 352, especially for a full-size car engine with solid lifters and a Carter AFB. Some time later, Ford changed the ID of month from numbers/letters to just numbers."
So go figure.....................
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Old 12-29-2017, 06:20 PM
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"...With this being the case, a mid-late November '57 assembly date would make sense for an early 352, especially for a full-size car engine with solid lifters and a Carter AFB. Some time later, Ford changed the ID of month from numbers/letters to just numbers."...
That makes perfect sense because all Y-Block and early FE engines used solid lifters in all Ford cars. They proved to be good over millions of engines.

Hydraulic lifters were a big deal back then. So were tubeless tires. These were changes that many folks simply didn't trust.

Y-Block lifters look like an upside-down 'T' with a broad face and a skinny body that MUST be inserted from the bottom, before the camshaft (and crankshaft) are installed. So, the engine engineering change to a (huge) 7/8" lifter bore meant a totally different block casting that could accommodate straight, 'top-loading' lifter diameters. The change also offers potential for a lifter to come out, drop down to the bottom and ruin the engine. - Dave
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  #20  
Old 01-06-2018, 02:13 PM
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Default VIN stampings

So you are saying that the VINs were stamped at Budd? That doesn't sound right. What about the bodies that Ford rejected and where Holman-Moody got 8 of them to build into the GN stock cars? None of those had VINs stamped on them as they were rejected before they went down the assembly line? It would have been almost impossible after the bodies had been dropped off to keep them straight.
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