Identifying Ford parts by the number isn't difficult, although confusion exists between the two categories of part numbers; engineering and service numbers. Engineering numbers are assigned when a part is designed, and is often the number stamped on the part itself. Service numbers are used by the parts retailer. The two numbers are closely related and both contain information of little interest to the other. In general, Ford's system consists of a prefix, a part number listing and a suffix. Although certain sections can be decoded, the main part-designation number must be checked against a Ford parts listing.
Locate the Ford part number. Regular parts have follow the prefix, part number and suffix system, for example, C7ZZ-10654-A.
Decode the part number prefix. According to the Fordification.com webiste, decode part number prefix C7ZZ as follows: "C" is the decade, "B" for the 1950s, "C" for the 1960s, etc. "7" is the decade year, in this case, 1967. The third position is the vehicle model, "Z" being the Mustang designation. The letter in position four represents notation from the design engineering office, "A" is general notation for Ford service parts. Consulting a prefix chart similar to the one found on FoMoCo will solve any discrepancies.
Cross-reference the main part number against a Ford part number listing. The main part number in the example 10654, when referenced to the listing found on Kelly Hotrod, decodes as a battery. The grouping 10600 to 10999 is reserved for batteries and instrument clusters. Each group of related parts have a specific numerical grouping. To identify the specific part, the number must be referenced to a Ford part listing.
Decode the Ford part number suffix. The single-letter suffix, or design engineering office designation must be looked up on a listing similar to the one found on Fordification.
Locating a number on the part itself is unreliable; not all parts have a part number stamped on them. According to Fordification, if a number is present, it is usually the engineering number. Although these numbers are related, they are not always the same. According to FoMoCo, hardware parts, such as clamps and fasteners, have their own numbering system and can be translated using a chart similar to the one found on their website. According to Fordification, Body parts have a special code found in the first two digits of the specific part number.