1-1/2! 1935 Ford Panel With Panel Trailer

We have an unusual situation here–we not only have a barn find panel wagon, we have a barn find panel wagon trailer to tow behind it! You’ll find both of them listed for sale here on eBay. Thanks to frequent finder Peter R. for this submission! They are both located in Damascus, Oregon, and heavy action has moved the bidding up to over $4,000 so far.

Now this is the mark of a true barn find, isn’t it? The seller tells us this is a 1949 Oldsmobile engine with 1956 Oldsmobile heads, a roller cam and Corvette valve covers. Honestly, I’m surprised that Chevy valve covers will fit on an Oldsmobile engine, but what do I know? We’re also told that the intake manifold was stolen about 20 years ago and that the engine has been open to the elements for a while–despite having been driven into the barn about 50 years ago!

The seller tells us that there are only two spots of real rust–under both doors. I added this closeup so that you could see what one side looks like. Honestly, I think you’d be best off just cutting this out completely and starting over. I think I found replacement ones here, but I’d check for sure. At least they seem to be available.

No, the boat engine doesn’t come with it. But what you see here is the rear of another 1935 Ford panel truck; the “trailer” that the seller is including in the auction. That plywood bulkhead was someone’s idea of how to block off the front. I’m not sure if the frame sticking out of the front is the original car frame or what was added to the trailer.

It looks like there’s some faded signwriting on the “trailer.” I wonder if its legible up close.

Obviously, this is a project and a half! Literally! Are you willing to take it on?

Fast Finds


  1. geomechs geomechs Member

    A panel and a half! Something unusual for sure. I’d love to take a project like this on but the Olds motor would have to go. Speaking of which, I’m surprised at the choice partly because the starter is on the left which can interfere with the steering. I guess it can’t be too bad because I’ve seen a few with Olds power.

  2. Metoo

    In this case I’m a purist and would have to agree with you. The Olds motor would have to go. Would a Ford flathead 8 from that era be your choice?

    • geomechs geomechs Member

      Hi Metoo. I would try to put a period correct engine in there but I don’t think it’s a real sin to install a later 24 stud. I’ve got a ’53
      Mercury engine sitting in the corner of my shop that would love to make a ’35-’36 Ford its new home.

  3. capt doug

    I love the panel truck – the trailer?? maybe useful and very cool if it is!
    No need to try and save the motor – hopefully the engine compartment and frame is not too cut up so a nice flat head Ford would be an easy and appropriate installation.
    Touring the car shows,autojumbles and major vehicle based flea markets in this rig would be a fun buying/selling retirement plan for an old car nut like me.

  4. Milt

    The first picture looks like the photographer staged the clutter around the van.

  5. Mountainwoodie

    I want to sell this project but I cant move all the crap out of the way to give you a reasonable idea of what you would be buying. Just trust me.

    • newfieldscarnut

      Interesting …

  6. JW

    I love it and if I were younger I would take this project on just because it’s cool and I love panel trucks.

  7. Tommy Brown

    I would love this old project, but I would have to see the old thing with all the junk out of the way. Seems kinda fishy to me, that a person would stage it like this to try and sell it.

  8. sluggo

    You guys should see my storage areas,,,Ironically I live about 15 minutes from this seller. It looks cool as heck in my book, Although I am more of a Chevy guy but I have lusted after a panel van/Truck for a long time. Nice find!

  9. stillrunners lawrence Member

    Chevy covers are to narrow for a SBC….most likely it is a SBC..

  10. erikj

    I agree that the first photo is staged!! Makes me wonder -why? still a great project.And the bit about the valve covers,I don’t think sbc covers fit the said motor with the car. Don’t buy unless you can do a personal inspect. or have a trustable person that can go do a inspection for you. Just a good idea.

  11. jcs

    Something is off with the facts listed on eBay. Car drove into garage 50 years ago. Garage appears clean and dry. Anybody see any leaves around? Where did the leaves come from on the engine? Even if it were sitting outside, it couldn’t accumulate that many leaves unless the hood were left open for 20 years or so. I think that the engine photo was definitely staged. Seller states he bought this as is. Even though he bought it, it would appear that it is still sitting in the garage it’s been in for 50 or 20 years. Why didn’t he take it home? Something is very wrong with this listing.

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