My dad is looking for a Model A Phaeton. How can I say this respectfully (he is my dad) but he is looking for something on the lower end of the price spectrum. He is not looking for something fully restored and big bucks. More of an unrestored or perhaps a project. I figured I would post this here just to see if anyone in the network knows of anyone that wants to give up their car.
Please Send me a email. As they may miss your response.
There are several on Craig's list right now.
Unfortunately not what I would necessarily call lower end for price and all appear to be on the east coast.
Here are a couple links:
I have no connection with any of these just thought I would share.
You can do a google search for Craigslist by posting this URL:
"Model A Phaeton"Site:Craigslist.org
To continue Larry B's not quite what you are asking for? And the for whatever it is worth. It is funny this timing, but just a couple days ago, I was doing my usual daily peruse of eBad and noticing three A '28'29 "phaeton"s priced lower than I would expect. So although I am not particularly interested in model A Fords (unless they are 1903/'04), I looked at the listings. One I believe is the same car as one of Larry B's craigslist links. It was a mediocre restoration, price appears to be fair, but it definitely depends upon what is under that paint. Looking at a car before buying is always very good advice. But with mediocre restorations? It is even more important.
All of the cars I looked at the listings for looked to be enjoyable as is. All could use some freshening and detailing to make them look better. Most of them were priced a bit over what common closed model As try to sell for, but less than model A open cars were selling for a few years ago.
Just an observation on my part. But it seems model A open cars are selling for less than they were awhile back? Maybe with the aging of the hobbyists, more people are wanting the comfort of the closed cars?
Good luck on your quest! I hope your dad gets what he wants and can enjoy it for years to come.
Does he have a preference whether '28/'29 or '30/31? And "phaeton"? I am not quite clear on the current usage for Model A Fords. Two door or four door?
PM sent through forum, don't see an e-mail address.
Thanks Tim, I got your Personal Mail!
Larry, I will share those with my dad.
Wayne thanks for your insights;)
Thanks so much!
Matt: The advice you have received from Wayne and Tim is accurate. The price of a Model A has generally gone down over the last two years or so. Now with all of that being said, the open cars, roadsters/phaetons still go for top dollar if they are decent at all. Depressed from several years ago - yes,, but still expensive if it is a good car. Regardless, I hope you find the car of your dad's dreams.
I have a friend in Bellingham, Wa (near Canada border), who wants to sell a '29 model A phaeton. It's rust free, straight, and pretty complete, but a project, because it is all apart. If that's something of interest, let me know and I'll PM his name and phone number.
Wayne, I see that I didn’t answer your question. My understanding is that a model A Phaeton is basically the same body style as a Model T touring.
Robert, I haven’t been following Model A prices. I appreciate your insights. One issue is finding something more local. A good price 3000 miles away is not ideal.
Les, I sent a PM. Look forward to your response.
I love to network on this forum!
Thank you Matt. That is what I thought. I have never really been into model A Fords, but as I recall, they had four-door "touring" cars in 1928 and '29 which were generally called a "phaeton". Phaeton is simply a fancier word that basically meant a fast open carriage (the word dates back to ancient Greek being the carriage that the Sun God drove across the sky).
What I think confuses the issue for me, is that if I recall correctly, Ford offered both four-door and two-door versions in 1930 and '31. That is where I get lost in the nomenclature, wondering if a "phaeton" is a two-door or a four-door?
Regardless. Good luck on the search for the perfect car for your dad!
When Ford introduced the Model A in late 1927 (but it was a 1928 Ford!), there were about five passenger car body styles offered. The Fordor Sedan, Business Coupe and closed cab pickup truck didn't come out until later in 1928, but the Coupe, Tudor Sedan, Sport Coupe, Roadster and the Phaeton were initially available in limited numbers until production finally got into full swing during 1928. The four-door open (convertible) body style was the upgraded Model T "Touring" that was now called the "Phaeton". This open four-door Phaeton was offered during all four years of Model A production and was always referred to in Ford literature as a Phaeton.
Because the Great Depression was hurting new car sales by mid-1930 and the mid-range car buyers were slipping down a notch or two and now buying Fords or Chevies (if anything!), Ford introduced a couple "Deluxe" body styles in 1930 to attract this reduced circumstances market: the Deluxe Coupe, Deluxe Roadster and the Deluxe Phaeton. Unlike the Coupe and Roadster - which were simply fancied up standard body styles - the Deluxe Phaeton was a completely different body than the four-door Phaeton. For one thing, it only had two doors. It was also wooden structured, unlike the Standard Phaeton ("Standard", which the four-door Phaeton became called in 1930). The top irons were mounted below the top of the body instead of on top of the moulding. Front seats were bucket folding style instead of the Standard Phaeton's bench seat. A left-side fender mounted spare tire, cowl lights and trunk rack were standard equipment. It was MUCH snazzier than the Standard Phaeton and was instantly a success.
Because the Deluxe Phaeton wasn't introduced until the summer of 1930, domestic (USA)production numbers were low compared to the Standard Phaeton: 3,946 to 16,479. In 1931, the ever-deepening Great Depression really took its toll on new cars, even Fords: 4,076 Standard and 2,229 Deluxe Phaetons. The totals for 1930-31 when the deluxe Phaeton was available then are 6,175 to 20,555. As a comparison, 1928-29 Phaeton domestic production reached almost 100,000
The Deluxe Phaeton is considered desirable and "rare" today because of its low numbers and attrition rate due to generations of young folks being attracted to it and destroying it, as well as through deterioration of the wooden body structure. All things being equal in terms of restoration/originality quality and completeness, a Deluxe Phaeton will be MUCH more expensive to buy in modern times than a 1930-31 Standard Phaeton or 1928-29 Phaeton. If you are lucky enough to stumble across a Deluxe Phaeton for a reasonable price, GRAB IT!!! Otherwise, the numbers game must be taken into account: you'll most likely end up with a 1928-29 Phaeton based on availability and price. ALL Model A Phaetons are fun to drive, although it's not a lot of fun putting down the top on the four-door models. You rarely see a four-door Phaeton with its top in the down position. A Deluxe Phaeton's top, on the other hand, is better designed and much easier to fold down and put back up again.
Good luck with your Model A Phaeton hunt, but be careful what you buy! Don't fall for a four-door Phaeton fancied up with whitewall tires, cowl lights, dual sidemounts, etc, being called a "Deluxe Phaeton", as some ill-informed (or deceitful) sellers do. A Deluxe Phaeton has ONLY two doors. The others are simply a Phaeton (1928-29) or a Standard Phaeton (1930-31) with four-doors, no matter how much chrome junk is hung on them.
1928 Phaeton, late 1931 Standard Phaeton, late 1931 Deluxe Phaeton, (just sold my early 1931 Deluxe Phaeton )
Our late (December) 1928 Phaeton
Thanks Marshall. That was interesting and educational. I never really studied A's much even though I have a Tudor. You summarized that very well. Al
Nice job Marshall on the info about Model A Phaeton's. I had wanted to give Matt some info on them to help in his dad's search, but I didn't have the time the other day to type such a complete job.
Very nice write-up Marshall! And a very nice looking model A.
Thank you. I am always trying to learn more, even about model A Fords.
Thanks for your insight! That is very helpful!
Thank you all for the kind words. 'Glad that readers here found value in my Phaeton summary. I know this is a Model T site, so I only told the dime version instead of the fifty cent story. Lots more to tell, but we'll save it for a Model A website.
By the way, our pictured December, 1928 Phaeton has outside door handles because it was built very late in the month in one of the assembly plants that received the handles for installation on the soon-to-be-built 1929 open car models that were to receive this new feature. Not all December, 1928 Phaetons and Roadsters got outside door handles, however. Ours still had the multiple disk clutch and Powerhouse generator, both 1928 features = a 1928 Ford.
Just some more Model A Phaeton trivia for y'all.
Marshall, Does your car have fluted headlight lenses and solid engine front mount? What is your serial number? where is your emergency brake handle---in front of gear shifter ? Are side curtains stored in rear floor compartment? Thanks
Thanks Marshall on the update on your 1928 Phaeton. I had wanted to ask about the door handles, because I would have guessed buy the picture it was built in January or February of 1929. Is the gas tank stamped with the December 1928 assembly date?
(1) By the time I bought the car in 1997, it had suffered at least one very amateur restoration that obliterated some 1928 features. However, fluted lenses were still on the car when I bought it. The solid front motor mount was discontinued by November, 1928, as announced in that month's Ford Service Bulletin. The familiar Y-mount with three springs replaced the solid mount system. By the time my car was made in late 1928, solid front engine mounts were no longer part of the crossmember, or if my frame ever did have the solid mount, it got modified to the newer style by a past owner/restorer.
(2) I'd have to check the title for the VIN (engine number), as the original 1928 engine to this car is stored away with a pounded-out center main bearing. A beefed-up Ron Kelley orphan engine was installed in 1999. I recall that the original engine number was late 1928, probably October or November, given the up to three month leeway in engine production and actual installation into a chassis.
(3) The Ford Service Bulletins announce on page 309 of December, 1928, that an outside door handle conversion kit was available to be retrofitted to earlier 1928 open cars. That month's bulletin also mentioned that outside door handles had begun to be installed on open cars in October. But not all assembly plants installed them that early. In typical Ford fashion, existing inside door handle latches on hand in the factories were first used up before the newer style was installed. $$$$$$$$
(4) The emergency brake handle on my car is located in front of the shifter, typical of 1928 Model A's made after June or so, depending upon assembly plant. As the separate parking brake system was introduced, the brake handle on the left side was phased out and replaced by the handle in front of the shifter. AA heavy trucks continued to use the hand brake on left into 1930, but not passenger cars.
(4) There is a curtain pan in front of the rear seat covered by a wooden hinged “trap door”, but it would be a challenge to get the side curtains all stuffed in there! Maybe because the repo side curtains for this car are made of non-original material, they're too thick? 'Dunno.
It's been since 1999 when I stripped the amateur paint job off this car, but I seem to recall finding a December gas tank date stamp. I'll see if it's still visible through all the primer and paint I laid on. I'm pretty sure that's how I determined my Phaeton was built in December and not in October or November, based on the presence of outside door handles.
Marshall Thanks for your return post. My interests stems from my owning a 1928 Phaeton also however mine is a survivor still sporting original engine, paint, interior and top. Serial number is 646,xxx which also November 1928. It has fluted head lights, red steering wheel, bayonet dipstick, single plate clutch, outside door handles which appear factory, labeled on off ignition switch bezel, side curtain compartment in rear floor, original side curtains, and remains of solid front engine mount.
My dad found a Phaeton. It was no too far away. Nice running car. Not a project and not exactly restored to original.
Glad you found your dad's dream car. Congratulations and happy motoring.
Hope he gets lot's of pleasure out of it.
Thanks for letting us know.
Matt, Congratulations to your dad on finding the Model A Phaeton that worked out for him. May he get many miles of enjoyment out of it.