Stalled Deuce Project: 1932 Ford Roadster

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Elegant simplicity is one way to describe the eye-pleasing beauty of a 1932 Ford roadster.  Long the staple of hot rodding, builders have amazed us with endless variations of these once basic cars.  Differences in paint, mechanicals, stances, and custom touches have made many of these hot rods as individual as snowflakes.  The artists who build these cars have a unique medium on which to construct their masterpiece, and now you have that opportunity as well.  Nestled away in a Delafield, Wisconsin garage is this 1932 Ford roadster project waiting for someone to finish it.  Being sold here on eBay with a starting bid of $25,000, this stalled project is more than just an original frame with a Brookville body resting on it.  With it comes a comprehensive mix of new and vintage parts to turn this bare beauty into a traditional hot rod masterpiece.  Would this be the kind of project you would like to complete?

What you get is an original 1932 roadster frame with a title based on the serial number stamped on the rail at the Ford factory.  On top lies a Brookville body ordered with a flat floor and a tack strip for a convertible top.  The windshield frame has a 2″ chop, and a custom set of chrome and bronze stanchions fasten that frame to the body.  The rest of the parts collected for this project are listed in the eBay ad.  The price and/or value of this list is documented as well in this ad on the HAMB in the classified section.  The HAMB (Try to figure out what the acronym means!) is the premier web forum for vintage hot rods and is a place you can spend days wandering around gathering inspiration for any build you are contemplating.

In building a 1932 Ford roadster, the sky is the limit.  Like a 1957 Chevrolet and a 1965 Mustang, nearly any kind of part you can imagine is available for these cars.  Original style frames are being reproduced alongside completely modern versions.  The modern frames can be custom built to accept a modern independent front suspension and nearly any kind of rear end your heart desires.  If you decide to keep the car traditional, as the seller appears to have planned, various suppliers offer dropped axles, hairpins, and other pieces to get the stance of the car to your liking.

The interior is also a place where the builder’s creativity can be on full display.  From bomber style metal seats to fine leather seats and door panels with alligator inserts, the cockpits can be as much of a work of art as the exterior.  As a Christmas present to myself, I signed up for a subscription to The Rodders Journal.  This expensive and beautifully printed magazine is known for spectacular write-ups and photographs of hot rods both old and new.  In a back issue I ordered, a painter built one of these up as his personal car.  Some of the more impressive touches were Chrysler Airflow art deco styled door handles and knobs turned from the thick layers of paint that had built up in his shop for over thirty years.  The polished swirled paint made perfect knobs with a uniqueness all their own.

Looking under the hoods of past builds can reveal anything from a hot-rodded Ford Model B engine to a big block Chevy.  However, traditionalists will demand only one type of powerplant for a 1932 Ford roadster: a built-up Flathead.  While a Flathead can’t offer the amazing horsepower that modern engines put out, and they have a well-deserved reputation for overheating at times, the sounds and smells of Henry’s masterpiece cannot be duplicated.  It looks like the seller of this car felt the same way.

It is a shame that the seller was unable to complete their vision for this roadster.  However, their loss is your gain.  You almost have everything there to complete one heck of a traditional roadster.  The immediate postwar period in Southern California was an amazing time to be a car lover.  These cars formed the backbone of the early hot rodding movement.  If you are not familiar with this incredible time and place, then you owe it to yourself to read about the pioneers of this era at the American Hot Rod Foundation website.  They even offer recordings of these pioneers in podcast form to listen to on the way to work tomorrow.  I dare you to not want a car like this after hearing about the early days.

So, after you have spent most of the day looking through the HAMB at the amazing project cars being built with vintage parts and hearing the tales of long ago on the AHRF website, what type of 1932 Ford roadster would you build?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Glenn

    H.A.M.B. Stands for hokey ass message board

    Like 4
  2. egads

    lot there for the money

    Like 3
  3. grant

    That sir would be the Hokey Assed Message Board.
    With that said, this has been on the HAMB for almost 6 months. In his ad he says he won’t separate, but after a while he added his own comment, he’s willing to negotiate if there are some parts you don’t want.

    Like 2
  4. Gaspumpchas

    I’m sure there’s at least 20 large in parts there; I built a 32 Brookville roadster with a 283 and the stock drivetrain. that was almost 20 yrs ago and the body was 10 k then. Lots of work there and you might have to massage the body a little even though its new. Good luck to the new owner!

    Like 2
  5. Solosolo UK ken tillyMember

    Even though I am a purist and not really interested in anything built after 1970, I am not into hot rods in any way, shape or form, but this could be one magic build when finished. Thanks Jeff Bennett for the wonderful, very in depth write up.

    Like 1
  6. IkeyHeyman

    When you add up the component price list in the HAMB posting, it’s close to the starting price of the Ebay auction. Seems like there should be a “stalled project discount” for a buyer because he might not want to use all the parts in this package. Having said that, the seller has put in a lot of time assembling the pieces for what could be a dynamite roadster.

    Like 4
  7. Joe Haska

    No doubt the asking price is very close to the cost of the parts. It has been on the market for some time, I would agree the seller needs to bite the bullet and make it a little bit more of a bargin, to get it sold. Or get the best price for what the new buyer wants ,and the try to piece the rest out. The good and bad about Hot Rods, very hard to find two people who want the very same build. Good example Speedway Motors 32 Roadster complete car less engine trans, in other words all the same. How many have you seen? How many have they sold? I know, but I won’t tell! Think about the whole idea is to have a car that no one else has, I know people say there all the same, there not, if you know what your looking at. I think all Harley’s, are all the same, but I know there not, Iam just not knowledgeable enough to know all the difference’s.

    Like 3
  8. Morley BrownMember

    Needs a Nailhead Buick. The prettiest and torques motor ever built. A flat head is just common and boring. Enuff said. Morley

    Like 1
  9. Dan D


    That is all.

    Dan D

    Like 0
  10. I. Nigg

    The car went to Switzerland…….the frame was junk, engine not running, the rest of the car and parts are good. I will finish the car and enjoy it anyways.

    Like 0

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