Several commutators / rollers, seeking help with ID

Good day. I posted this series of questions on another forum and didn’t get too far. I really respect the knowledge here, and so thought I would try again.

I have a few different Timer rollers, no timer caps. I was hoping those who know may enjoy helping me ID (or in the instance of the few Ford rollers, date) and those who are like me who don’t know might enjoy learning a thing or two about this hidden but very important part. Just trying to figure out what I have. I have a dozen or so different ones, and will post each one in a separate collection of photos on this thread. Bring posted to the right resource would be appreciated too in lieu of direct ID’ing. I am not afraid of research. Anyways, I hope you enjoy.

I’ll start with the first of three variations on a FORD stamped roller. I am assuming this is the standard Ford roller that came with cars originally, but maybe someone out there who is really knowledgeable will be able to date the era of T… or maybe they were all used during the whole production?

Ford roller numerous two… same material as number 1, but FORD is embossed on the barrel AND the arm.

Ford #3. Different style, made of steel, but has FORD stamped on the flat part of the arm.

No name #1 is fun. Similar to other styles BUT cast out of aluminum.

No name #2 is similar to the FORD ones… but has a thick ridge at the one end of the barrel and no name on it anywhere.

No Name #3 is cast similar to the Ford ones, has no thick ridge like #2 and does not have a name cast into it. Just different enough to definately be different!

No name #4

No name #5… very similar to #4 but a little different in The shape of the steel barrel and lever.

I think #1 and #2 are about 1919 when Ford specified that every part needed to be marked “Ford” in some way. By 1920 Ford went to a stamped steel roller but they were still marked Ford.

The unmarked brass rollers are earlier, typical of 1913 - 1918. The aluminum variation was tried maybe around 1915 along with the aluminum bodied timer.

The unmarked stamped steel rollers (mid 1920’s and produced later until today) are likely a copy made by a supplier to an auto part store or hardware store. Probably more of those around than the ones made by or for Ford.

Suggest that you pull the prints for the timer roller along with the record of changes available at the Benson Ford Archives located in the Henry Ford Museum. The dates in the ROC will be the date the change was recorded, normally meaning the change had happened at some earlier date and it was now adopted as standard for production.

Japan marked… similar to #4&5, but clearly stamped Japan.

Thank you so much! That’s some great advice and one that I’ll follow up with. It is so interesting that even this small part has so many variations!

For them what it is worth thought I would post the remainder of them. So many neat designs!

No name #6.

No name #7

No name #8. This one has a shoe, but the shoe is worn thru. I always heard an Anderson Timer has a shoe. If this a comutator for an Andersen?

No name #9… has a very faint patent date on it. The day could be 15 or 16 but the year is 1916 for sure.

The last two have clear patent dates but are unlike any others that I have.

I think from here on down they are all aftermarket variations. I don’t see any like Anco used.

You are missing many factory Ford timer rollers and brushes. Around 1917 - 1918 Ford used a brush to try and replace the roller with something simpler to manufacture. Examples are out there to be seen. It’s instructive that Ford went back to the previous design after a period of experimentation. Here’s a picture, they don’t work as well as the rollers do.

Wow, what an interesting design there. I can see why that one might not end up working so well.

Thank you again for your shared information! Your responses back have been excellent in helping me figure out what I have my hands on. As you can see… I ended up picking up several rollers at a sale earlier this fall. Didn’t know exactly what all I got but figured they might be good spares for me or others in need. Ha.

For both Ford timers and aftermarket timers there are more timers to be had than rollers so you should have something very worthwhile there. Maybe take a look at the accessory timer posts to figure out which aftermarket timer goes with which roller.