hddennis

Switch purpose and identity

Recommended Posts

Probably should have done this years ago but I was just going over old photos and noticed a switch on my Maxwell's dash when I first took possession of it 11 years ago. It had been a parts car and was a basket case so at the time there was no wiring for me to check out its function. It is pictured just to the left of the hole for the dash panel. Is it just an accessory switch  or would it signify being used to switch from battery to magneto ignition?

 

According to serial number my car would have been one of the first to switch from magneto Ignition to the more modern Atwater-Kent coil and distributor but I have found several items that either were custom ordered or did not follow the norm so I can't be 100% sure it didn't have the earlier magneto. Just curious if anyone knows why the switch may have been used.

 

Howard Dennis

 

100_4296.JPG

 

100_4296 - Copy.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The dash panel has a switch that is a combination headlight switch with the keyed center turning the ignition on and off.

 

Howard Dennis

 

100_4210.JPG

 

100_4209.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Could be a replacement switch if the original went belly up. Does not look like a factory-mounted piece to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would agree that the switch you show is not original unless is has been repurposed. I am quite confident that "pop" or blind rivets were not used in that time period.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Blind rivets were developed during the '20s with a patent in 1927 and further developed in the '30s. There is a bit about it on Wikipedia under "Rivet".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

Blind rivets were developed during the '20s with a patent in 1927 and further developed in the '30s. There is a bit about it on Wikipedia under "Rivet".

 

I think the Maxwell noted above is a 1918?  Did not know about the rivet history going back that far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this whole post somehow went south.

 

I'm looking for possible reasons and purposes for the switch shown in the first picture. The second and third pictures show the restored dash for my car and the fact that it had a functioning headlight and ignition switch to answer the first response. I removed the original blind rivets to restore the dash and after these pictures were taken I filled in the holes and it now looks totally original. 

 

My car Is a "late" 1917.

 

Howard Dennis

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

100_9993.JPG.267d7a702f8141681c9b0c81aa1ec3a4.JPG

 

I decided to find this switch this morning since my photos aren't clear enough to show what this could be. I've either thrown it out or misplaced it so I looked online hoping to find one like it.

 

This Connecticut switch is the closest I could find. It is listed as having a removable key/lever and that answers my own question as to why it had such an odd lever. My switch (from memory) had a hot center terminal that the lever snapped on to and at the top of the switch body 2 and maybe 3  positions that the power could be transmitted to. I'm curious if anyone has or has seen a similar switch.

 

My car/truck by serial number should have been equipped with the very new Atwater-Kent coil distributor battery ignition. But, my chassis was sold without a body and was meant for commercial use as a delivery and Maxwell at the time 1917 and on into 1921 lists magneto ignition as standard on trucks. Since my  chassis is the only known survivor of this program found so far I'm trying to determine if that odd switch on my dash might indicate it came originally with magneto ignition if that is what that switch is for.

 

Howard Dennis

 

Magneto Switch Connecticut.jpg

 

Maxwell Commercial Chassis.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now