My 1948/51 Ford F-4 Flatbed Story


I originally found the '51 F-4 while surfing on eBay. The starting bid was $450. I watched the auction for the week duration and no one bid on it. I contacted the seller after the ended and offered to buy the truck. The truck was located about 75 miles north of my house so I borrowed a car trailer and headed up there on a Friday morning. When I got to the seller's house the guy informed me he was selling the truck for his neighbor. He would not come down on his $450 price, like any good truck person I tried to get him down but he wouldn't budge. I felt $450 was a good price for the truck. I came with a loose flathead V8 engine (At the time it didn't run), 22 1/2" tubeless wheels (These very hard to find), two brand new water pumps (These go for around $100+) and a brand new shop manual, along with some other miscellaneous odds and ends, the normal junk you find in an old truck. I dragged the truck home with the intensions of parting it out but once I got it home and started looking it over I decided it was a pretty nice truck and too nice to part out. I let it sit in my shop's parking for about six months. On day I decided I might sell it so I decided to see if it ran. I installed the six volt battery from my F-2,dumped some gas in the carb, turned the key and hit the starter button. It turned over fine but nothing more. I took off the distributor cap and found the points to be pretty crusty. I took a piece of emry cloth and sanded the points, but the cap back on and tried to start it again. To my amazement the engine fired right up and ran as smooth and quiet as any engine I have ever heard. This still with the cruddy ignition system parts. I wonder what it will sound like once I tune it up.

I also found the '48 F-4 on eBay while surfing. The truck was located in Northwest Minnisota, in a town called Mora. The truck was listed three different times. The first time the starting bid was $2100, the second time was $1200 and finally the third time, $800. What caught my eye was it had the original stock truck radio in it. These radios are one of the hardest to find items for the '48-50 Ford trucks. Along with the radio the eBay ad said it ran "great" and the body looked to be in good condition. I emailed the seller and asked if you would take $600 for it, he countered with $700. I ended up driving up to Minnesota to pick it up. To help with the cost of the trip I made arrangements with a couple of people to pick up and deliver truck parts on my way. I will post details about this adventure in another page on this site. Anyway, I got the '48 home and am starting the process of swapping sheetmetal from the '48 to the '51. I am doing this because I like the design of the '48-50 truck better than the design of the '51-52 truck. I am hoping to have the truck on the road by the summer of '07 2007 that is.

Bob Jones

'49 F-2 Ford pickup
'48/51 F-4 Ford flatbed '48 F-1 Ford panel
'49 ford 8N
Click here to go to the pictures Pictures of my 1948/51 F-4