Thursday, 28 March 2019

1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Panel Van.

Our Show's Car Curator, Ken Warburton, penned this little piece for us on one his own personal cars that he will display this April in Cronulla. You will discover that patience is a virtue, once you've read this story about how Ken finally ended up owning this magnificent Vintage 1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Van.

The long journey started way back in October 2006 when I retired after 34-years service as a Trolly-Dolly with our National Carrier, Qantas Airways.

I can remember the words my dear old Dad said to me when I hung up the wings from my last Los Angeles direct flight. "You know son, you are going to need something in your life that makes you want to get up in the mornings" how true are those words of wisdom. 

In September 2017, I became the proud owner of this
1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Panel Van.
Photo: Steve Core  

I am a motor mechanic by trade, so I still loved tinkering with cars and boats. The opportunity for me to purchase my first Model A Ford happened 6-months after I retired. I was offered to buy a 1931 Model A Ford Delux Tudor 2-door sedan. This vehicle just happened to be burnt out and as you know I love a challenge...

So I bought the vehicle with the intention of a (body off) full restoration. Anybody who knows anything about Model A Fords will agree with me, that they are heaps of 'SHIT' however you can still purchase every part for them brand new in America.

Not knowing too much about restoring a Model A Ford, I decided that the best way to learn about my investment would be to join the Model A Ford Club of NSW

It had taken the previous owner 30-years to put this vehicle together.
A retired Master Builder - he constructed the body himself.

Photo: Steve Core  

The first meeting I went to in the Community Hall at Merrylands was really a blast, I thought that I was the only crazy person, until I started talking to other long time club members and owners of Model A Fords. I can distinctively remember talking to one gentleman at the meeting (who has since passed) who owned four Model A Fords in various stages of renovation.

The other club members welcomed me to the Model A Ford world with open arms, plus information and advice which I really appreciated. The President of the club invited me to a maintenance day for interested members the following weekend at Neville Jones residence in Baulkham Hills which I did attend. 

On that particular Saturday morning there were other club members that had driven their Model A Fords to the maintenance day for guidance on how to repair their vehicles. My 1931 Model A Ford Delux Tudor 2-door sedan was still in my garage waiting for a little tender loving care from her new owner.

In September 2017, I became the proud owner of this
1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Panel Van.
Photo: Steve Core  

Now to cut to the chase. Neville Jones took me under his wing and showed me his beautiful 1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Panel Van that he had been nurturing for 30-years. I thought to myself WOW !!! how good is this Classic vehicle.

Even a Holden man would have to admit these Model A Fords are pretty special and approximately 15 Model A Fords are headed to the 5th Annual Sylvanvale Pre-WWII Vintage Car Show to be held in Cronulla Mall on Sunday April 14th, 2019. (So don't miss out on these automotive treasures of a by gone era).

Neville's panel Wagon is unique and started life as an engine and chassis both dating from 1930, Neville told me that he wanted a panel van BUT could not find one. He had an engine and chassis so he built one himself. Being a retired master builder he sourced authentic parts over 5-years including doors from Bendigo and a radiator grill that had to be knocked back into shape after being run over by a Mack Truck. 

All original 1930's Ford tool kit
is stowed under the rear floor panels

Photo: Steve Core  

It was entirely built to original specifications from America. It has a beautiful tool box, Coachwood panels and etched glass. It took the span of 30-years to collect all the original and genuine items that are displayed in this tool kit.

I realise this story is a little long winded, however it needs to be told because as Custodians of these vehicles of the by gone era, I believe that it is imperative that we exhibit these iconic treasures to the younger generation whenever or wherever possible.

With the guidance of my fellow club members and friends, I completely restored my 1931 Model A Ford Delux Tudor 2-Door Sedan back to new in a little over 2-years. (nothing that money can't fix). I am still the proud owner of this Classic vehicle.

The engine bay and in the top right-hand corner
and inset - a 1930's genuine Ford branded oil can.

Photo: Steve Core  

Fast forward (10 years) to September 2017, I was away on the Model A Ford Club's Spring Tour in Mudgee, when I heard a rumour from one of our club members that Neville Jones, my mate from all those years ago wanted to sell his pride and joy. I quietly excused myself from the company that I was with and phoned Neville immediately to find out the real truth.

He told me that he reluctantly had to sell his 'BABY' due to medical reasons, however he wanted his vehicle to go to a good home. Somebody that would look after it in its original condition and that they promised that they would not turn the vehicle into a HOT ROD.

I could hear the sadness in his voice and said to him that I could be interested in purchasing his vehicle. So I made arrangements to visit him the following Monday once I returned from the Spring Tour.

On Monday 28th of September 2017, 10-years since I first laid my eyes on this magnificent vintage motor vehicle I was now the owner of this very rare vehicle and proud of it.

The previous owner and the man who lovingly & meticulously
put this entire vehicle together, Neville Jones

Photo: Ken Warburton

There was also another condition of the sale, Neville asked me if I would attend his funeral in his vehicle, and of course I agreed to his request. So far so good, I have not had to adhere to his final request as yet, thank heavens.

That my friends is the story of how I eventually became the owner of this 1930 Model A Ford Special Delivery Panel Van.

I hope that you enjoyed the ride, because I sure am.

Cheers for now... 

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