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'32 Ford Chassis Numbers

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by stevzrodz, Aug 19, 2009.

  1. stevzrodz
    Joined: Jun 9, 2007
    Posts: 29

    stevzrodz
    Member

    I have a small problem! Is it normal for a '32 Ford chassis number to consist of seven numbers and one letter? I was told it should have eight numbers but mine has a letter instead of the seventh number. Is that normal or have I got some oddball? It is definitely an original frame, not repro.
     
  2. hotrodtom
    Joined: Apr 14, 2005
    Posts: 231

    hotrodtom
    Member

    '32 chassis numbers should start with *18- ______* for V8 cars and *B-______* for four cylinder cars. The * represents a star. There's a lot of other folks that know more about this than I do, but I just happened to be the first responder. I'll be very interested in what others have on this topic.
    Fearless
     
  3. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Do you have a B or an 18??
    These are SERIAL numbers so there is NOT a proper number of digits.
    Early fours AB or ABB (heavy truck), later B or BB prefix.
    V8's 18 or very rare BB18.
    18 series starts at ONE, which is in the Ford museum, and runs up to somewhere in the 200,000's for 1932 part of series.
    B's beagan arbitrarily at 5,000,000 as a continuation of A series, and all will be somewhere in that 5,000,000 area.
    Stars marked ends to prevent thieves from adding digits to get a clean number.
     
  4. Deuce Roadster
    Joined: Sep 8, 2002
    Posts: 9,519

    Deuce Roadster
    Member Emeritus


  5. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Did not notice New Zealand! TOTALLY different. Their engines came from Canada, which numbered the cars in small batches...each series begins with a letter (or two??) and goes for a fairly short run, then another letter and numbers start over. Some info exists online but I cannot find my bookmark.
     
  6. HotRodFreak
    Joined: Mar 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,935

    HotRodFreak
    Member

    I have a 39 type looking tranny with stamped number 99C-xxxxxx.
    Any body have a clue what it is from ?????
     
  7. Canada
     
  8. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    It is from a commercial (small pickup, delivery). The serial list on Van Pelt's site will tell you the year. It was a 239 powered vehicle...99 prefix. Canadian would be C99, not 99C!
     
  9. rumblegutz
    Joined: Aug 29, 2008
    Posts: 585

    rumblegutz
    Member

    The Western NY Early V8 Club, Region #3 has documented that the Canadian VIN’s differed slightly. So it may be possible that the VIN’s down under varied as well. Check out the link

    http://www.wnyrg.org/canvins.html
     
  10. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    My missing bookmark! Thanks!
    Australian and NZ numbers would be from those lists, as the engines and chassis were Canadian. Canada also supplied India and South Africa.
     
  11. stevzrodz
    Joined: Jun 9, 2007
    Posts: 29

    stevzrodz
    Member

    The chassis I have is an American chassis, I'm in LA at the moment to ship it back home. The Numbers start with the star then 18####b# then the star. The b is the confusing bit. We looked at the numbers by the firewall and they where hard to read, so we lifted the body to reveal the numbers at the rear hump in the rails, and it is definitely a small case b where the seventh letter should be. The chassis is definitely original, and is under a battered 5 window body. It was a jolopy racer in a passed life, but I now intend to put far too much time and money into it and put it back on the street where it belongs. I hope somebody out there can clear this one up for me.
     
  12. bwas
    Joined: Jan 10, 2008
    Posts: 33

    bwas
    Member

    That "b" is a six, they changed the shape of 1,6,and 9 in 1938
     
  13. Swifster
    Joined: Dec 16, 2006
    Posts: 1,456

    Swifster
    Member

    As stated above, it's a '6'.
     
  14. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Ford used the funny straights (and changed the format slightly twice in the '28-48 years) so that restamping could not be done with common hardware store stamps. All the Fords '28-48 had a variety of design features to annoy thieves.
     
  15. stevzrodz
    Joined: Jun 9, 2007
    Posts: 29

    stevzrodz
    Member

    Thanks Guys, I just hope the DMV sees it the same way when I try for a title, or maybe they will be too lazy to even check!!!!
     
  16. magoozi
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 1,725

    magoozi
    Member
    from san diego

    we have all ways call it the druken six and the lazy nine, this was done on purpose.
     
  17. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 28,274

    The37Kid
    Member

    At what point in the assembly line did Ford stamp those numbers? Has anyone seen what the stamp fixture looked like? They couldn't have had some guy hand stamping them could they?
     
  18. Deuce Roadster
    Joined: Sep 8, 2002
    Posts: 9,519

    Deuce Roadster
    Member Emeritus

    Yes they did ... and most look like they were stamped by a drunken sailor. The ones on both my 32's are very uneven ... BUT they are bunched together fairly nice. I had to show the DMV ... my frame numbers and they are so uneven of the 3W ... that the DMV was suspicious ... that I had stamped them myself. :(

    The fact that I had a 1952 title ( issued in North Carolina ) with the same numbers ( and a photo of the building it sat in for years ) along with a photo of the 3W helped. When I showed the DMV the photo of me loading the coupe to take it home ... Then everything went smoothly. :eek:
     
  19. 325w
    Joined: Feb 18, 2008
    Posts: 5,629

    325w
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    In the GM factory a man did the stampings of the numbers. He set the stencils in a frame and hit the holder with a big hammer. His right arm was very strong.
     
  20. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Frame got stamped when its engine/trans unit arrived. I have never seen any detailed info on the exact procedure of how the right stamps were put together and used on the line, but I do know that KRW (and numerous industrial suppliers) sold holders for the stamps. I think they must have been at least loosely assembled in a holder by someone looking at the engine or maybe a build/inspection sheet with the motor so it was at least possible to check it before the hammer was swung...
    I speculate that it had to be a purely hand-assemble process on the stamp because I believe the numbers would not have been sequential...batches of engines (numbered right after passing inspection at the Rouge plant) were sent out to assembly plants and I don't think there would have been any close order...also there would have been different prefixes on engines from the same serial series, since some were dressed as truck units and some as cars.
    The engine numbering at the Rouge plant would have been much more organized, since the engines were just stamped as they came out of testing. If they batched truck and car units at that point, they could have even used an automatic setup that flipped the number on each hit.
     
  21. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 28,274

    The37Kid
    Member

    Bruce, Please explain the truck/car engine differance.
     
  22. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Truck means big truck, first. Differences change for different years...usually trucks got iron manifold and heads in the thirties when cars had aluminum...some years had double row pulleys, lower compression. Biggest dif was that since the engine/trans was assembled as a unit with number stamped on trans, the trucks would have had the 4-speed and passenger commercial usually the three speed...also, after 1934, 11" clutch. Big clutch and fourspeed could be ordered on lesser vehicles too.
    Engines left the engine plant essentially fully dressed after run test and inspection.
     

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