At least for me, there is nothing better than seeing an old car or truck in original, as-built condition. They are relatively few and far between these days, and too often, as we see on Barn Finds, original cars have been stored badly and when found, are no longer pristine. When I saw this incredible original 1952 Ford F-1 pick up in this ad here on craigslist in Fairfield, Connecticut, my jaw literally dropped. This is just a beautiful example and wonderful to see, regardless of the asking price of $25,000, which puts it way out of my price range.
I don’t follow truck values for early Fords, so I did a little quick research online, and it looks like this seller knows what he has and is not at all out of bounds with this asking price.
But the real point is not what it’s selling for or what it’s worth, just look at these pictures and you will appreciate how well it has been taken care of for over 60 years.
The seller tells the story of how this truck remained in such great condition: “This truck was used to hold extra fire hoses for a fire station in south Dakota and always stored inside… Runs drives and sounds like new.. Paint is all original with spots of primer coming through from being polished at the fire house often.”
How it got from South Dakota to Connecticut is not mentioned. But the seller does point out that the truck’s body is excellent, with only dings and scratches from normal use, and that it has no rust. In addition, the bed wood is original and has one rotted spot from hose water dripping on it for many years.
The truck’s interior is claimed to be in “like new condition,” and the pictures do bear that out, although the seat is dry and has some obvious cracks on the driver side.
The dashboard is absolutely beautiful. For an old work truck, this looks like a pretty comfortable place to spend some time.
It has a six cylinder engine too – 1952 was the first year for Ford’s new overhead valve 215 cid six. In this truck, the engine compartment does look extremely clean, shows the original paint still on engine and even the valve cover decal looks good. I am guessing that even though the six was the base engine offered, that it is rarer to find than the flathead V-8, but perhaps someone more knowledgeable about these trucks can confirm production numbers for the engines Ford offered.
No pictures of the bed or undercarriage were provided in the ad, so even though this truck looks great and the seller’s description sounds legitimate, anyone about to spend $25K (or close to that) will need to perform a thorough inspection and road test. Even with only 23,000 miles, and not counting its 63 years of service, it’s still a used truck, isn’t it? If I was going to buy this truck, I’d want to know exactly where in South Dakota it came from, and its complete history through the current owner. Hopefully, all that information will be available. If you are interested in 1948-52 F-1s, there are lots of examples of this era Ford commercial vehicles for sale on Hemmings.com, with prices that vary wildly. Fire department trucks are frequently low mileage and well cared for vehicles, but not so frequently for sale. For me, this particular example’s originality and pristine condition make it really special, and if I had the money and the space, I’d be at the seller’s house today (it’s less than ten miles from where I live too!) You can find out about these trucks from other owners on a Ford truck owner’s forum here and the Society for the Preservation of Antique Motor Fire Apparatus in America (SPAAMFAA) might be of interest as well. So would you be proud to have this truck parked in your garage?