Beautifully Restored: 1929 Ford Model A Depot Hack

Variety is the spice of life, and we certainly see some varied vehicles here at Barn Finds. This 1929 Ford Model A Depot Hack is a perfect example. We haven’t seen many of these, but this one makes up for the lack of quantity by being a vehicle of real quality. The Ford is located in Cameron Park, California, and is listed for sale here at Hemmings. The asking price for this beautiful classic has been set at $20,000 OBO.

The Depot Hack is a really interesting vehicle, and they trace back to the days before commercial air travel. This was an era when people used to cross the country by train, and the Depot Hack would transport passengers from the train station to their final destination. So essentially, a Depot Hack was the equivalent of an early taxi. Given the fact that they needed room for passengers and luggage, there is even a school of thought that says that they could also be considered as a precursor to the station wagon. This Ford Depot Hack has undergone a total restoration, and its presentation is nothing short of superb. The paint has a deep luster to it, while the timber on the vehicle is essentially faultless. The wire wheels have recently been powder-coated and have come up a treat. I’m not sure about the color of the wheels, but that is a matter of personal taste. Overall, the exterior presentation of the vehicle gets top marks from me.

Seating in a Depot Hack tended, for the most part, to be quite rudimentary. It is well to remember that these were never a vehicle designed to carry passengers a long distance, but rather for “short hops.” As with the exterior presentation, the interior finish is first-rate. The Ford is designed to seat six people, but I would hasten to add that they probably wouldn’t want to be carrying copious quantities of luggage. Having said that, it is fitted with a trailer hitch, so the option was always available to load passenger luggage into a trailer. Saying that the seat-belts aren’t original would be stating the obvious, but the wheel and dash are, and these appear to be close to perfect.

The drive-train in the Ford is original, meaning that what you get is a 201ci flathead 4-cylinder engine, backed by a 3-speed manual transmission. Once again, the presentation of the engine bay is as impressive as the rest of the vehicle. However, that beauty is more than skin deep. The engine has recently been treated to an overhaul, meaning that it should have plenty of life left in it yet. In addition, a new battery has just been fitted, and the owner states that there is no need to use the crank to fire this old girl up.

This Ford Model A Depot Hack is something quite different in a classic car. Apart from weekend jaunts, car shows, and Cars & Coffee outings, there are some other potential uses for a vehicle like this. You have to admit that it would make a very unusual wedding car, a promotional vehicle for a business, or even for someone to conduct tours of local areas of interest. One thing that you could be fairly sure of, and that is if you rolled up to a Cars & Coffee in this, there is very little likelihood that someone else will rock up in an identical vehicle.


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  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    About as unique and nice as it gets.

    Like 6
  2. ken tilly Member

    Just another Model A. I think there are more A’s on the roads of the world than Henry ever built. Now that body parts are made in steel, aluminium, fibreglass etc. and most mechanical parts are re produced, it beats me how anybody can claim to have restored, and own, a 1928/31 Model A when they are using current year replacement parts.

    • Mike Hondros

      Ken, to each his own, it’s the same as someone have a Bugatti fender hand shape to restore a vintage car. To bring an 90 year old car back using new reproduced parts doesn’t affect the beauty and work that went into the restoration.

      Like 12
    • the one

      wah wah wah..Call a wambulance

      Like 8
    • IkeyHeyman

      Where does it say that this was restored with “current year replacement parts”?

      Like 1
      • ken tilly Member

        Not this Model T Ikey, but most of the Model A’s that I have been associated with in South Africa are restored with mostly new parts brought back from USA while on holiday. I went to Hershey in 1989 with a group of South Africans and they all brought back recently manufactured parts.

      • Doc

        It’s sporting seat belts and a body style that the factory never made. These are commonly built when the person has a chassis and can’t find a decent original body and doesn’t want to spend the money for a reproduction body.

        Like 1
  3. Jerry

    Seems they’ve got more money into the restoration than they’re getting out.

    Like 3
  4. 86_Vette_Convertible

    Funny seeing seat belts in something of this age. Regardless, it’s a beautiful vehicle that would be a hit at pretty much any car show it was in. The wood is gorgeous and appears well done.

    Like 4
  5. geomechs geomechs Member

    I’ve always liked these and although I wouldn’t know what to do with one it would be fun to have and ferry people around. If the weather was good I wouldn’t be afraid to take it anywhere.

    Interesting story that is almost but not quite related to this car: The Reynolds Museum had a ‘27 T open touring that had been in a major collision; the body from the driver back was totaled. They decided to install a depot hack kit and use it to ferry passengers over to the aviation museum. All went well except that they had to make the drivers parallel park because they would pull into the parking stall and ‘step on the clutch.’ Something like this would work much better…

    • the one

      Great parade car

      Like 1
  6. canadainmarkseh Member

    Reynolds museum would be a great place for this, the museum is owned by the Alberta government and is a heritage site, It would be well cared for. If you ever go there go in the summer so you can do the warehouse tour there has to be 200 cars, trucks, buses, and airplanes. Mostly cars, you pay a little extra but it is well worth the the tour. The guides have a pretty good knowledge of the vehicles in there and can answer most of your questions.

    Like 2

    this looks very similar to a wildanger built coach from new jersey. the wildanger company used metal inserts instead of all wood. if anyone requires more info, maybe i can assist.

    Like 1
  8. Rube Goldberg Member

    Made for a time before the word “hack” was a dirty word. Actually, I remember a “hack” was an old jalopy. Pretty cool, but sadly, no interest in the future.

    Like 2
  9. steve shay

    I’d love to own this car, but my dog would jump out of the open sides the first squirrel she’d see.

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