Chassis Component Finishes

Most chassis components were painted black. Two primary methods were used for painting black items. Generally large items and items that required masking or would fill with paint were sprayed. The finish on sprayed items would vary, but would show no more than a moderate gloss. Items that were dipped had a brighter (glossier) finish.

The transmission and associated castings were painted ford engine green. Although the color varied slightly, all green items on a particular vehicle would match.

Many small items and most fasteners (nuts, bolts, etc.) were unfinished steel. While most lockwashers are listed as unfinished, the original color varied from steel gray to a moderate blue from the heat tempering process.

The following list of finishes is limited to the items covered in the Undercarriage section of the Model A Ford Judging Standards & Restoration Guidelines Published by MARC and MAFCA. Therefore, items pertaining to brakes, etc. are omitted.


Axle, front ..................................................
Axle, rear (rear end assembly) ....................
Battery support (forged design) ...................
Bolts, nuts, lockwashers ....................
Battery support (stamped design) ................
Bolt  .................................................
Nut, Lockwasher ..............................
Nut (rear)  ........................................
Lockwasher .....................................
Battery clamps/cover ..................................
Nuts  ................................................
Body mounting bolts ...................................
Nuts, flatwashers ..............................
Lockwashers ....................................
Bumper arm, front ......................................
Bolts ................................................
Studs ...............................................
Nuts, lockwashers ............................
Bumper arm, rear .......................................
Bolts (to frame), nuts  .......................
Lockwashers ...................................
Bolts (to crossmember), lockwashers
Nuts  ................................................
Bolts (to body) .................................
Nuts .................................................
Lockwashers  ...................................
Clutch housing ............................................
Bolts, lockwashers ............................
Clutch release arm ............................
Clutch release shaft, pins ...................
Hand hole cover ...............................
Screws ...................................
Cross brace, rear bumper arm ....................
Bolts, nuts  .......................................
Lockwashers  ...................................
Drag link ....................................................
Plugs, cotters ....................................
Grease retainer caps .........................
Fender brackets, front ................................
Bolts  ...............................................
Cotters (early only) ...........................
Nuts  ................................................
Lockwashers ....................................
Fender brackets, rear .................................
Bolts  ...............................................
Nuts, lockwashers ............................
Flywheel housing ........................................
Drainhole cotter ................................
Shield ...............................................
Bolts  .....................................
Lockwashers .........................
Bs
Bs
B
R
B
1R,B
R
1U,Z
U
B
U,1Z,2C
B
R
C
B
U
B
U
B
1U,B
U
U
1U,Z
U
R
1R,U
G
U
G
U
B
U
B
1U,B
2U,B
Bs
U
B
B
1C,B
U
1U,Z
U
B
1C,B
R
G
U
B
C,1B,3R
U
 
Frame assembly .........................................
Grease fittings, press-in ..............................
Grease fittings, threaded (steel) ...................
Radius rod, front (wishbone) ......................
Ball socket, ball cap .........................
Bolts, nuts, cotters, sleeves ...............
Springs ............................................
Retaining pin, cotter ..........................
Radius rod, rear .........................................
Bolt (front), nut, cotter ......................
Speedometer drive cap assembly  ...............
bolts ................................................
Lockwashers ...................................
Spindles .....................................................
Spindle arms ..............................................
Nut, cotter .......................................
Spindle bolts (king pins) ..............................
Locking pin, castle nut, cotter ...........
Locking pin, stop nut, lockwasher .....
Thrust bearing ..................................
Felt retainer ......................................
Spindle connecting rod (tie rod) ..................
Spindle connecting rod ends .......................
Bolts, nuts, cotters ............................
Plugs, cotters ....................................
Grease retainer caps .........................
Springs, front & rear ..................................
Spring clips, front ("U" bolts) ......................
Clip bar ...........................................
Nuts  ...............................................
Cotters ............................................
Spring clips, rear ("U" bolts) .......................
Clip bars ..........................................
Nuts, cotters ....................................
Spring perch ..............................................
Nut, cotter .......................................
Steering to frame -  
Bolts, cotters ....................................
Nuts  ................................................
Steering gear arm (pitman arm) ...................
Bolt, cotter .......................................
Nut  ..................................................
Transmission housing ..................................
Shafts, shaft retainer, bolt, lockwasher
Drain, fill plugs  .................................
Transmission gear shift housing ....................
Bolts, lockwashers ............................
Universal joint housing cap, outer ................
Bolts, lockwashers ............................
Nuts  ................................................
Universal joint housing cap, inner .................
Bolts, nuts, cotters (to transmission) ...
Bs
C
U
Bs
U
U
B
U
Bs
U
4A,B
R
U
Bs
Bs
U
Bs
U
U
U
U
Bs
Bs
U
U
B
Bs
B
B
1U,B
U
B
B
U
Bs
U
 
U
1U,B
Bs
U
1U,B
G
U
4U,R
G
U
Bs
U
1U,Z
U
U

Date and Finish Codes
1 - Change date mid-1930
2 - Change date early-1931
3 - Change date mid-1931
4 - Optional
   A - Aluminum
B - Black, dipped
Bs- Black, sprayed
C - Cadmium plated
   G - Ford engine green
R - Raven finish
U - Unfinished
Z - Zinc plated

Additional Note:
The rear end assembly was painted as a unit including housings, gaskets, bolts and safety wire, but prior to the addition of radius rods and brake housing plates.

Fasteners
Original fasteners (bolts, nuts, etc.) were typical of the era, but generally differed from their modern counterpart. Standard hex head bolts had a thicker head (15% - 25%) than a comparable modern bolt and the heads showed subtle signs of the stamping process, often in the form of a slight circular depression on the top and vertical lines around the perimeter of the hex. Modern hex head bolts are typically machined resulting in all surfaces appearing smooth and refined.

Hex nuts were one of two designs, but were consistent by part number and application. The first design was machined from hexagonal stock and was flat on the bottom with a slightly raised circle or "washer face". The top was slightly chamfered around the perimeter and flat at the center. The second design was blanked or sheared from the top down from steel stock creating a rounded chamfer around the top and a flat bottom.

Castle nuts had rounded grooves in 1928-29. Castle nuts with square cut grooves began appearing in 1930 and by 1931 were used predominantly (but not exclusively). The castle nuts were dimensionally similar to the modern version except for the standard castle nut used for a 7/16" bolt was only 5/8" hex. Only the hardened castle nut used for spring shackles was the larger 11/16" hex.

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©1998 Marco Tahtaras