David Jones's 1929 Model A
The automobile featured on the front cover of this month’s Sidelight belongs to fellow KYANA club
member David Jones. It’s a totally original 1929 model “A” Ford four door town sedan. It rolled off the assembly line on July 17, 1929.
Many of our club members own unrestored cars but very few this old. So, I don’t need to tell you
how rare this one is. The first time I saw it, it was love at first sight. So, when David asked me to help him ith this article, I was glad to do it.
This car is a true time capsule from the 1920’s. David’s car was three months old when the stock
market crashed and flung the country into the great depression. When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 David’s 29 Ford Model “A” was already a twelve-year-old automobile so it was lucky not to be a victim of the scrap metal drives for the war effort.
One of my first thoughts after seeing this car was, how was it able to survive for decades untouched? Someone must have stored it away up on blocks in a dry barn and far away from public view. But
who would do this and why? If we only knew the answer to that question wouldn’t that make a great story?
However, after looking over the car several times I noticed something unusual that caused me to
question my theory of this automobile spending most of its life tucked away in somebody’s barn. This car has a taillight on each of its rear fenders. Somebody has had to add that over the years because no Model “A” Ford of any style or any year ever came from the factory with dual taillights and turn signals. And who would spend money on a safety feature like this for a car that is spending most of its life in a barn?
I changed my mind and I now think this automobile has had a busy life, but it has been lucky enough
to have owners who loved it and took excellent care of it. I doubt it ever spent a night outside its garage. The engine still starts and runs perfectly. After 93 years, the only thing that I can see that needs to be done is the water pump needs repacking and the mechanical gas gauge needs repairing. If you would add a new set of tires to that list that old 29 Ford Model “A” would be ready to hit the highway again and soon start its second century.
David Jones has been a KYANA club member since 2019. He, in my opinion, is more of a car collector than a car restorer, At the present time he owns a 1959 Imperial Gold Crown, 1966 Imperial convertible, two corvette convertibles, Chevy 4 wheel drive lifted pick up, GMC 454 dually pick up, Ford F250 lifted 4 wheel drive, five GEO Metro convertibles, and a Chevy Suburban 2500.
As most of you know, we are having our annual club picnic at the club house on August 28th. I’ve
talked to David about this and he has agreed to bring this all original 29 Ford Model “A” out to the club house for all of us to see, so be sure to bring your cameras. Now don’t expect to see your reflection in the factory paint job it’s faded some in the last nearly one hundred years, but you won’t find dents or rust. Also, the original nickel plating on its radiator shell, head lights and bumpers are still in great shape as is the interior.
Several of our club members who know David very well advised him to enter his original 1929 Model
“A” Ford in the spring nationals held this year on June 17th and 18th in Beckley, West Virginia. David took their advice and trailered his 29 Model “A” Ford to the show where it took first place in its class. Congratulations David and thank you AACA for offering this special class for these rare original time capsules that give all of us a glimpse back into the past history of the automobile. Thanks, David, for sharing your story with all of us. See you at the summer picnic.
Roger Stephan: Writing this for my friend David Jones.
From David Jones: I would like to thank Roger Stephan for keeping my Model “A” safe during the winter, advising me to keep it original, being such a great friend, and such a nice article but I would like to add a few things. As far as my trip to Beckley, West Virginia, my Lord and Savior protected me several times. First of all, the car transporters that you rent from U-Haul are not made for a 1929 Model “A” Ford. The straps are not made to fit their wheels and the straps are almost the same width of the tires.
For some reason I decided to pull over, when I had plenty of gas to get more gas, and low and behold, the straps were almost completely off of my tires. If I travelled another 10 miles, I’m sure I would have lost my precious 29 Model “A” and it could have killed someone. I was scared and immediately re-strapped the wheels but I was still worried and asked my smart phone for the closest Wal-Mart. It was only 6 miles away.
So I went there and bought the best ratchet straps they had and made my 29 Model “A” secure.
On the way home the Lord kept me from falling asleep at the wheel many times as I had very little
sleep in the last 48 hours. I finally had to pull over and take a long nap.
Last but not least I was only 15 minutes from home when I had a flat tire. I was tired so I just called
AAA and they came and changed the tire in about 10 minutes. Unfortunately, about 3 miles down the road the wheel came off. The person forgot to tighten the lug nuts, but praise God no one was hurt and very little damage done to my suburban ($360). It could have been much worse so thank you Lord for keeping me safe.
I would also like to thank Ronnie Rudolph. If it was not for him, I would have not bought my 1929
Model A. When I went to look at it, I decided not to buy it because it was not drivable. It would not go in gear and the bottom looked pretty rusty, but before I left, I called Ronnie and he told me to send him pictures. I let him hear it run after seeing the pictures and hearing it run, he told me that I better buy it so I did. The rust that was underneath was just surface rust and I just had to have the clutch replaced. Thanks Ronnie you are a walking encyclopedia when it comes to cars. Also, I would like to thank Chester Robinson for all his help. He has so much knowledge and is always willing to help.
I get complements on my car every time I take it anywhere. I must say that the best compliment that
I have ever gotten is when a senior master car judge told me that my car is the best original unrestored model “A” Ford that he has ever seen. He also said, if he would have seen it 40 years ago it would still be the best one he has ever seen. Stop and think about that for a moment, if he would have seen it 40 years ago it still would have been the best one he has ever seen.
See everyone, Lord willing, at the picnic. May God richly bless everyone. Keep the faith.
Car: 1960 Pontiac Cataline drag car
Owner: Tim Truax
Note: If you would like to see this piece of history, the Road Runner is currently on loan to the Swope Cars of Yesteryear Museum just minutes from Louisville, KY.
KYANA Region of the Antique Automobile Club of America
3821 Hunsinger Lane, Louisville, Kentucky 40220