von Cramm

Sample Appraisals

1931 Ford Model A UPS Delivery Truck #215

Excerpts from Actual Appraisal by Steve Cram

00633 (odometer reset at restoration).

Esterior color:
Black to fenders, UPS dark brown.

Interior color:
Black vinyl to driver's seat and wood.

Ford 200 CID L-head 4-cylinder engine, 40-50 bhp, manual transmission, wire wheels, side view mirrors, fold-out windshield, wipers, horn, UPS-built delivery carriage including sliding door and special rear windows, side curved paneling, aftermarket 6-volt alternator to replace original generator, aftermarket stainless steel water pump, right side mount with special metal cover, running boards to UPS specs, UPS plaque mounted inside with regulations.

Using the traditional rating scale of 1 to 5 for collector cars (1, mint/show/perfect; 2, very good; 3, good; 4, fair; 5, poor/rough; and 6 for unredeemable junk or parts), this commercial vehicle sports a nut-and-bolt restoration and is in #1 condition. With two logical mechanical updates, some fussy judges might find fault and ding a perfect score; however, the appraiser, who also judges many shows, would not. This vehicle should receive high 90s at most shows that accept commercial vehicles. It is the only 1931 UPS van known to the appraiser.

Very good physical specimen taken to bare metal with all refurbishments necessary and originals that go with the unit. No rust or impacts now. #1 paint job done to UPS specs. Brightwork in #1 order; front and rear bumper show no entanglements, grille is also #1, replacement Boyce Moto-meter. Wire wheels in #1 order, tires very good to excellent. Top redone carefully in ribbed vinyl to replace original canvas material which is no longer available, #1.

Completely restored to match rest of vehicle, dash is #1 with all instruments functioning as they should. All systems operate, all #1. Framing in wood completely redone using high-quality materials only (includes special oval rear windows). Cabinetry everywhere in this vehicle is #1.

Engine compartment:
Detailed for show. Cooling system #1, same for all body wiring. Simplicity of the design allows detailed inspection.

Detailed for show and in #1 shape. Aftermarket items include alternator, stainless steel water pump and battery connector, all in #1 condition.

Everything rebuilt to #1 status: engine transmission, rear end, etc. Unit started quickly, warmed up perfectly and tested out #1 in all tests made.

The Model A was introduced in the late '20s as the successor to the immortal Model T. This better edition proved to be just as popular. However, even hot-selling Ford Model A passenger production figures show the ugly trends of the early '30s. 1930: 1,261,053 units produced. 1931: 626,579 in the middle of the Great Depression.

Commercial model As were available from a host of constructors but never seriously collected (due to their size and cost) until recently. Unfortunately, most examples are butchered beyond redemption. While the market for this vehicle is thin, it is the only one this appraiser has seen restored to this level. It's a special truck, and will require a special buyer to achieve top dollar.

Appraised value: