This Black Friday edition of Fan Car Friday comes to us from David. His 1952 Ford F1 pickup truck seems very fitting for Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving celebrates the first harvest of the pilgrims in the New World in 1621. Not only does this truck just have the right feel for this time of year, it is centered on a 1900’s business that existed due to a need of harvested grain by a local town.
Fan Car Friday is a segment where we want to share with the world the automobiles that our fans have. These cars are not for sale and we have absolutely no affiliation/relationship with the cars, the build or the owners, we simply saw the photos and felt they should be shared with the world to inspire others on their build. Or, simply put, its great eye candy for those of us who can’t make it to car shows or meetups as often as we would like. This post was made with written consent from the owner.
The continued existence of this vehicle is somewhat of an oddity of itself. Often when people think “classic pickup” the 1951 Chevy 3100 comes to mind or maybe the 1955 ford F100 does and some of the younger folks will have cars like the late 60’s Ford F100 appear in their head. It is not too often that you will find a 1952 F1 with the distinct shark tooth grill at your local Cars & Coffee. In fact, this is one of the vehicles I keep on my radar when I have the chance to see a classic pickup and I have only seen a handful in the last 10 years.
David’s 1952 F1 comes with a great backstory, and after 20 years of restoration it better have a tale to tell. It starts off with David wanting a classic pickup, but due to family and work constraints, he had to do the right thing and put off his dreams of purchasing a classic until he happened upon one in Farmville, VA. It was in remarkable shape for its age, had little rust, the engine ran (albeit not too well), which all made it perfect for what he had in mind.
See, David grew up in Fairfax, VA. No, not the Fairfax, VA we all know now. The old one. The one without 30 story high buildings, little microcities and an interconnected train system. Instead, the one that was filled with rural areas, many family farms and livestock dispersed throughout. David’s aunt Mildred and uncle Herman owned a local farm supply business in the center of town called Fairfax Hay and Grain. David spent many years of his childhood and teenage years working there. Whether it was working in the store, selling feed, or riding along on deliveries to local farmers, it all left a good impression on him. As he grew older David was able to start making deliveries on his own. It was hard work loading hay into barn lofts and carrying around 100lb feed bags, but it was an experience he wouldn’t trade for anything.
With a hard work also comes the fun of people who do an honest day’s work for a living, and there were manys. They would stop in, sit around the pot-bellied stove and tell stories from their life; which left David with some very fond memories. Not only that, this pot-bellied stove is where he learned about business, responsibility, accountability, customer service and life in general; All values and principles that have guided David throughout his life.
The truck itself has the original 215 overhead valve inline six cylinder engine, marking the first year that Ford decided to move away from flathead engines (Though the eight cylinder flathead lasted a few years longer). The entire fuel system from the tank to the carb has been replaced, the brake lines were redone, the master cylinder, radiator and cooling system were replaced, he overhauled the engine, the 4.27 rear was replaced with a Yukon 3.54 and the brakes were replaced. The performance of the truck has been vastly improved, but it still prefers being driven at 50mph or less.
David can also proudly say that he painted the chassis, engine compartment, and undercarriage parts himself. When it came to the body, a company is Warsaw, VA did the work one piece at a time as the truck was taken apart in a Juniper Green to capture the color of old delivery trucks. The custom lettering on the doors was done by a pinstriping business only about an hour away from FantomWorks in Virginia Beach. The truck itself was finished in September of 2017 and has many custom touches on the interior. The “F-1” logo is sewn into the carpets, the interior is completely redone and there are burlap inserts in the seats and door panels with the Wayne Feeds logo printed on them. After many rounds of searching on the internet and making various phone calls without any lukc on finding a burlap printer, David was able to simply buy some paper sized burlap from Walmart and print the logo at home. Who would have guessed?
David’s intent with this truck was never to be a show truck, just a fun driver to use locally. Despite this, he has won a number of trophies and received much attention wherever he goes. If the truck itself isn’t enough to stick in your memory, the aptly named mannequin that follows the truck around is. His name is Herman and he is always adorned in his bib overalls and straw hat. He is either sitting in the passenger seat or sitting on the feedbag outside the truck. While Herman isn’t much for conversation on long trips, he has certainly sparked a number of them!
David’s favorite thing about the truck is how many people can relate to the truck or remember the Hay and Grain business that closed in the late 70’s. Most of all, it serves as a tribute to David’s aunt and uncle. Two of the finest and caring people he has ever known and both of whom have had a significant impact on his life.