15 July 2010|
Since this particular Ford truck was made before any of the staff here was even born, we were somewhat amazed by what we were looking at. Anything pre-1970s and we are lost for words when asked about the history of vehicles like this. When confronted with an unknown platform, it is time to ask around and Google-whack it until we have an idea about the historical significance.
The complete frame-off restoration of his junkyard find took over 10 years to complete.
In this scenario, this truck was one of the legends that put Ford on the map. It is an F-Series truck, more specifically the first generation of F-Series. The popular F-Series is the best selling truck of all time and its reputation was forged by this platform. Powered by an overhead cam flathead V8, the 1949 F-Series produced 100hp, which was well above the standard for the day. Owner, Andy Martin of Miami, FL knows all about the history of his vehicle but wanted the dated technology to be, well, history.
The complete frame-off restoration of his junkyard find took over 10 years to complete. The grand total of the project took in the neighborhood of $110K although were sure he stopped counting a while ago.
“Cars have always been my hobby and my passion,” said Martin. “I wanted to challenge myself and bought this rotted out 1949 F-1 from a farmer’s field in 1994. I chose this truck because the media only really covered old Chevys and I wanted to put a Ford in the spotlight by being radical and different.”
After disassembling everything, Martin started out by doing all the body and framework himself. At his sprawling estate in South Florida, he has all of the toys in his garage to make the magic happen. He fabricated the tilt front end, smoothed the running boards and shaved almost everything for that neo-classic look. After the bodywork was done, the project was hauled to Auto Color & Collision in Miami to undergo a transformation. It went from a rough primer vision of what could be to sparkling masterpiece that bagged awards after several coats of paint. Martin spec’ed out a unique color too, one that would reflect his taste in audio gear, JBL Corporate Orange.
The engine builds started with a 1993 5.0L out of a Mustang that was completely rebuilt and fitted with the latest technology. With upgraded fueling, air intake, cams and ignition, the truck was ready to pump out four times what it did back in the day. At 420hp with 390lb-ft, Martin’s Ford is more than just a showpiece but can run with the pack. The engine was matter to a T-5 Tremec 5-speed with upgraded Moser axles and a Ford Racing LSD.With the framework established, it was time to gut the cab and do the impossible. The dash was shaved and smoother and fitted with a custom billet instrument panel. The custom fiberglass center console is color-matched as are the door panels in anticipation of hand-picked speakers. A suede headliner was fitted and several panels were redone in leather including the door inserts, kick panels and the seats done by Teas Design. From there, some off-the-shelf items like the Rat Fink shift knob, Budnik steering wheel and VDO gauges complete the look.
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