Sierra's 2002

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Pre 1916
Model-T Ford Truck Radiator
(Recovered from High Sierra lake)

Model-T Rad a.jpg (61224 bytes) Model-T Rad b.jpg (83006 bytes)

Model-T Rad 5.jpg (54533 bytes)

Here is the radiator and shroud as I recovered them from a high altitude lake in the Sierra Nevada mountains. I managed to bring this up along with the pile of trash, anchors, and fishing poles in the pictures.

Model-T Rad 1.jpg (41341 bytes) Model-T Rad 2.jpg (45620 bytes) Model-T Rad 3.jpg (50936 bytes) Model-T Rad 4.jpg (44597 bytes)

After 1916 Brass was considered a "War Material" and restricted to war related uses forcing Ford to switch from brass to tin. Therefore this is a pre 1916 radiator.

Model-T Truck Example 1.jpg (28877 bytes)

The radiator came from a Ford Model-T truck similar to this.

Model-T Rad 6.jpg (59223 bytes) Model-T Rad 7.jpg (43540 bytes)

The shroud cleaned up well (after lots of Brasso and elbow grease)

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Then it was on to cleaning the radiator.

All in all the restoration came out very nice.

How did the Truck get in the lake?

Two stories of a Model-T truck ending up at the bottom of this lake have been circulated for generations. After talking to a number of people who have been in the area for many many years two slightly different stories were told. 

Story #1
Two guys got drunk one night and took a water truck for a joy ride on the ice. At one point they broke through a thin section and the truck sank to the bottom.

Story #2
Two guys were running moonshine across the lake, at night, in the 20's. The water truck they were driving was too heavy and broke through the ice sinking rear first and leaving the front end of the truck just sticking out of the water. In an attempt to hide the evidence, and not disclose the location of the still, the truck was shot at until it sank completely.

Both stories could be true. It's quite likely that they were drinking if they were running moonshine. Further support for the moonshine story is the bullet holes we found in the radiator. Their angle indicates the truck was nose up when it was shot (the holes entered the radiator from the top).

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Questions and comments                Copyright 1997,2006 Brian D. Basura                This site was last updated 04/02/06