Solid Barn Find: 1930 Ford Model A

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The Model T was always going to be a tough act to follow, but Ford found itself with another success when it introduced the Model A. During 4½ years of production, nearly five million buyers chose to give these classics a home. This 1930 model is a barn find that is in has just hit the market. It is a solid car that looks to be mostly complete. It could make a great restoration project or serve as the base for a rat rod or a custom build. Located in Redding, California, you will find the Ford listed for sale here on eBay. The BIN has been set at $7,800, and 94 people are watching the listing.

This little Ford started its life wearing Elk Point Green paint, but this has become quite faded. There is evidence that someone might have commenced restoring the car at some point because there are some visible patches. I believe that some rust is present at the bottom of the cowl on the passenger side, but the rest of the panels look promising. There are plenty of minor dings and dents, but all of these appear to be repairable. The owner states that all of the timber is in good condition, which is a significant plus point. The door glass is missing on the driver’s side, but the rest of it appears to be free from cracks or clouding. The bumpers are missing, but the remaining trim looks to be in a restorable state.

The engine bay houses the venerable 201ci flathead 4-cylinder engine backed by a 3-speed manual transmission. With 40hp on tap, the Model A would not be considered to be fast by today’s standards. However, in 1930 it was considered to be a spritely performer. The owner admits that the flathead doesn’t run, and he doesn’t indicate whether it turns freely. Judging by the state of the fan-belt, I suspect that it has been some time since it fired a shot in anger. What I find encouraging is the general appearance of the engine. It is extremely clean, and the paint’s freshness suggests that it might have received some attention during its life. There are many newer electrical components under the hood, and if the engine turns freely, there is a possibility that it won’t take a lot of work to coax it back to life.

The buyer will be starting from scratch inside the Model A because there isn’t much trim or hardware with which to work. The seat is missing, so a replacement will need to be located. The same is true of the dash and gauges, but the steering wheels looks restorable. How the buyer tackles this area of the car will come down to a matter of personal preference. Sourcing all of the missing items on the secondhand market would not be difficult and would suit the more budget-conscious restorer. The alternative is to buy all new parts, and everything that you would need is available through many suppliers. The downside to this approach is going to be the cost. There won’t be much change out of $2,000, which is a lot of money when you look at how simple this interior is. On the positive side, that should have it presenting perfectly, and it is going to represent a one-off expense.

The Ford Model A has remained a firm favorite amongst DIY enthusiasts because they are so simply engineered and built. Dismantling and restoring them is not a difficult task, and countless thousands have emerged from home workshops in a pristine state after rolling in looking decidedly secondhand. This one seems like a bit of a beauty, and it does hold a lot of promise as a project car. The asking price is affordable, and the number of people who are watching the listing suggests that it will probably get snapped up by someone fairly quickly. Could that someone be you?

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  1. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    This particular car needs to much work to make financially profitable, as you can buy decent running ones for around ten grand.
    Redding is my childhood hometown having grown up on a 120 acre farm just to the north of town off Quartz Hill Rd. It’s a vary dry summer climate with heavy rains in September and October. Rust is not much of an issue there, and you can still find some of these old cars in outlying areas. Many found their way to the scrap yards over the years, yet many country folk just parked worn out cars in barns or just in the back of their property waiting for the day someone comes along to bring them back to life. One such car was a 39 Lincoln that was parked in the yard of a neighbor far back off the beaten path that finally found its way to a relative by marriage to the owners who had long passed away. Jim restored the old zephyr back to original and had the old V-12 purring like a kitten. Sometimes I long to return to my childhood playgrounds, but life has many turns and stops, obstacles that must be overcome and then reality sets in and clears the mind revealing that we can’t live in the past, but must make the most of what we have taking each day one at a time always keeping a positive outlook, loving those who are in our lives, giving what we can as we live out the days we’re given.
    Happy Thanksgiving to all
    God bless America

    Like 15
    • Phlathead Phil

      The recent fires of California, Weed and in Redding particularly have claimed the lives of many a “Good-Find.” It’s a sad story.

      Like 4
    • Robert Cooper

      You are right about Redding, I lived there for about 5+ years and saw several vehicles just parked that needed restored. I can’t remember just where it was but I think it was off Churn Creek rd that a split window corvette was sitting in the weeds. Some elderly man was holding it for his son who was missing in Viet Nam during the war, he would not part with it.

      Like 1
  2. Robert

    It would be nice if it had a gas tank.

    Like 0
  3. dogwater

    These old cars are yard art they are know fun to drive the new generation don’t want them, day gone by…………

    Like 2
  4. Kenn

    Too much missing for the price. Gas tank, instrument panel, instruments, distributor, who knows what else.

    Like 1

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