Road Trip: Putting the Tips on Parts Acquisition into Action!
Updated: May 10, 2021
Part 3b: Parts (Getting on the Move to make a Purchase!)
If you just read Part 3 in the series on Tips and Tricks for Restoration then you know that much was said about different ways to find parts. Among those tips was a brief recommendation to try such social media platforms as Facebook Marketplace to locate the parts you need. Last week I decided to put this suggestion into action just to show what could be done. Of course, I had my own reasons for purchasing these items: my own Y block builds and hopefully the resale of a few parts so I can keep funding my website here.
Skip down to the video below if you don't want to read some of the details, but allow me the opportunity to set the stage. After logging on to Facebook Marketplace and entering "292 Ford" in the search bar, several different listings of engine cores and parts lots popped up on my screen. The best deal was all the way up in South Bend, Indiana, roughly 4 hours away from where I live in the Milford/Loveland, Ohio area. $120 for items such as Y block heads (the codes not listed), truck oil pan and pickup tube, valve covers, a set of rocker arm assemblies, etc. At first I just messaged the seller asking if he would ship just the rocker arm assemblies, oil pick up tube, and one of the breather tubes. He replied to say that he wanted to sell it all in one lot and would not ship. And... that's when I got to thinking. Maybe I could take a day off work, run up there, purchase the whole lot, sell off what I don't need, etc. Wanting to make the day worthwhile, I went back to the search box on Facebook Marketplace and typed "Y Block" just to see what else may be available. I was able to locate two other listings and after mapping things out, making arrangements with each seller, etc, a day was scheduled to make the circuitous route of well over 500 miles to pick up some parts. I had 3 opportunities in front of me but had no idea of how it would all turn out.
From the morning I left my house to the last stop I made in South Bend, Indiana, I recorded select moments of the trip. I do hope you enjoy the video...
Video of Putting the Parts Plan into Action!
In addition to all of the goodies I purchased, along the way I was able to meet some interesting and friendly people. The owner of this 1959 Edsel Ranger...
He had his car tucked away in the garage but you could tell it was driven quite often. To save some money and just enjoy the car, the owner had done some things to keep it drivable. But to be honest, the original paint and body condition was not all that bad. It was a real runner!
The second seller near Goshen, Indiana, was working on a 1957 Ford sedan and had removed the Y block in favor of a 351 Cleveland. He had quite a bit to sell...
In his garage was a very nice 1956 F100 - he said that it belonged to his sister.
That truck certainly brought back a lot of memories. Years ago in the early 90's, my dad had bought an unrestored 56 F100 and I remember my boss, Brian Brenner, delivering the truck to our house. The cab was not even bolted to the frame and most of the truck came to us in boxes and boxes of parts with all kinds of loose sheet metal. My dad ended up getting the truck painted a 93 Chevrolet Corvette red - very similar to the color on this truck pictured above. I was able to find some old photos of the truck we had back then... hopefully I can dig out some more and find the finished paint job. My dad sold the truck in 1995.
I did not take any pictures of stop #3 although there is obviously video footage of the parts sitting in my van. The seller was not at home and had requested for me to leave the cash hidden on his property so that he could pick up the payment after he got home from work - a very trusting individual!
As you can tell from the video I was very happy with what I ended up buying. In some ways, I came out better than what a trip to a swap meet would have been - especially with the distance that a trip to Carlisle, Pennsylvania, would have amounted to in expenses! The takeaway here is that it is very possible to find good deals on 50s Ford parts if you are willing to travel a bit.
Do not forget that in Part 4 of our series I will have tips and tricks on the DIY of restoration! In other words, I will present ideas and suggestions for you to accomplish as much of the work on your vehicle as you personally can do without sub-contracting work. The sub-assemblies of a vehicle can be a many-faceted, complex arrangement of parts that work in unison, and DIY folks like ourselves need to be read up and conversant on a host of topics. Wiring, plumbing, body work, engine diagnostics, etc - there is much to say grace over when it comes to vehicle restoration. If you have tips you would like for me to share on the blog, just send them my way at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message here on the website. Later on this year I do plan to write a post that will include subscribers' rides and projects - thank you to all that have submitted files so far.
As I meet people online, locally, and even nationally face-to-face I am often asked how I got the name "Hot Rod Reverend". I encourage you to read a little bit about my biography on a separate page of my website - just click here to reload https://www.hotrodreverend.com/ and then click "Biography" at the top in the list of pages to find out more.
The Hot Rod Reverend
aka Daniel Jessup