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1953 Ford F500 Horse Van!

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  • 1953 Ford F500 Horse Van!

    A farmer found one in poor condition -roof skin peeled off, some rust, don't know about the condition of the floor (I don't know enough to evaluate it other that it feels solid), bad starter, and I haven't seen the engine yet. The inside needs some cosmetic work -refinishing the butt bar.

    I love the old horse vans! It's like Art Deco even influenced the truck design.There's beautiful paneling inside, it's just gorgeous.

    However he want's $4500 for it. I think that is way too high for something that is going to need a bit of work.

    Anybody have any thoughts?
    Paula
    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

  • #2
    Originally posted by paulaedwina View Post
    A farmer found one in poor condition -roof skin peeled off, some rust, don't know about the condition of the floor (I don't know enough to evaluate it other that it feels solid), bad starter, and I haven't seen the engine yet. The inside needs some cosmetic work -refinishing the butt bar.

    I love the old horse vans! It's like Art Deco even influenced the truck design.There's beautiful paneling inside, it's just gorgeous.

    However he want's $4500 for it. I think that is way too high for something that is going to need a bit of work.

    Anybody have any thoughts?
    Paula
    I've been looking at vans too recently since I got rid of my truck and Sundowner. I've seen some newer vans than the one you mentioned for about the same price, and they're in good working condition. What I'd suggest is getting quotes on the things that need fixing (add 10% to the quotes in case of changes), and then shop for comps. Come back at him with a firm number on paper with a clear list of things that in your professional opinion lower the price of the van. If it needs a new engine or transmission you'd be better off going with something newer OR offering him scrap price and scalping the box and then putting it on a newer chassis.
    Piaffe Girl -- Dressage. Fashionably.
    http://piaffegirl.wordpress.com/
    https://www.facebook.com/PiaffeGirl

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      That's what I'm thinking. I have a mechanic and a trailer guy who would have to look over the thing. I saw one on Horseclicks a couple of years ago that was working and they were asking $5. Gosh they're beautiful aren't they? Just autos from that period were so gorgeous.

      Paula
      He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        BTW, I just popped over to your blog, and this;

        " You see, being proffy isn’t about having the finest horses and wearing the best clothes: it’s about grooming your rescued, rehabbed horse-of-no-breed until he gleams, then putting on your polished, 15 year old boots and hand-me-down breeches, tucking in your thrift-shop polo shirt and riding … the best you can every time. Being proffy isn’t about “stuff” — it’s about having the grit to work as hard as possible so that you can be a credit to your horse, regardless of his breed, brand, and (your) bank account. And frankly, that’s the whole essence of dressage."

        is an amazing thing you've written. Too bad it's too long for a signature. Pure inspiration!

        Paula
        He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

        Comment


        • #5
          Thank you so much You just totally made my night! And YES, I do love those old vans, and they seem to last last forever. Most everything I have is on a budget, but I like unique things, so I dig and dig until I find a deal. That's one of the reasons I'm looking at the old vans: those engines are practically bullet proof, and the box aesthetic is just to die for -- absolutely elegant and timeless. I'm a little scared of the "double clutch" but my aunt used to be an over-the-road truck driver and said she'd teach me.
          Piaffe Girl -- Dressage. Fashionably.
          http://piaffegirl.wordpress.com/
          https://www.facebook.com/PiaffeGirl

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            You're welcome. I find my inspiration where I can, and your bit about being proffy is outstanding. I just started some longe sessions to improve my seat so I am slowly, but surely getting my brain to match my will with regards to competing.

            You've hit the nail on the head when you say, "the box aesthetic is just to die for". I have an interest in architecture, and I love things that are made with beauty in mind. The finish on the ceiling and the walls on the inside of these old vans reminds me of the teak finish on those boats from same era. http://www.peterfreebody.com/boat_details.php?boatId=51


            What's that, Fairview? You have one of these?
            Paula
            He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Oh, it's a 6. You know, I went looking and found a 6 on Horseclicks too. That's alot of van for 1 horse though

              Paula
              He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

              Comment


              • #8
                Aww gee, when I was doing carriage driving I would have *killed* for a 6-er like that! Just the right size for one horse, one fixed-shaft vehicle and 3 tack trunks!
                "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief

                Comment


                • #9
                  If the year is actually 1953 it would be a F5... the F500 series did not start until 1957

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Fairview Horse Center
                    Yep, I have a lovely 6 horse, but it needs brakes, and has not been used in several years. Ya know, I drove it a lot, and never used the double clutch/shifter.
                    Cool!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Here is a 6 horse not to far from me. Unfortunately I am not looking.

                      http://rochester.craigslist.org/grd/3761485717.html

                      Christa

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by clanter View Post
                        If the year is actually 1953 it would be a F5... the F500 series did not start until 1957
                        I dunno, Clanter, but that's what the truck says F500 and the seller says the title is 1953. Maybe the seller isn't correct?

                        Thanks, Christa, but I'm not looking for a 6. The one the farmer has is a 3 (or two drafts LOL).

                        I wasn't really looking at all, but I passed by and it was there and I love them.

                        I don't think I'd give him more than a grand for it if it's salvageable. I have a mechanic who can look at the engine for me and a trailer guy who would look at the trailer condition.

                        I do like them. For some reason the idea of hauling horses in a box truck makes me feel alot better than a trailer. I've driven box trucks so I guess it's a familiarity thing?

                        Paula
                        He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If it has a six cylinder engine, check the rear end ratio. The engine may turn at unreasonable RPM on the interstate.

                          FWIW, we had a six cylinder '55 Ford station wagon and it did not do well above about 60 MPH. At lower speeds, it pulled a wooden 15' boat with a 35 HP outboard motor very nicely.
                          The inherent vice of Capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.
                          Winston Churchill

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            You guys are chock full of information!

                            Paula
                            He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              F5 looks like this

                              http://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/...5/1328619.html

                              F500 (1958) looks like this

                              http://www.purplewave.com/cgi-bin/mn...i?121114/E8092

                              just a guess on my part the 1953 may be typo in reading the vin number actually might be a 1958

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                LOVE those Imperators!!! and apparently I'm really out of the loop, I didn't know that there are new vans, as well as used vans, googled and tripped over this website:

                                http://www.frankdibella.com/vans

                                new ones aren't the same as the old ones, old ones have more class. At least that's what I tell myself when I look in the mirror in the morning (beats 'admiring' my turning-grey hair)....

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Fairview Horse Center
                                  Wow, I would probably sell my 73 for half that.
                                  Originally posted by Fairview Horse Center
                                  Yep, I have a lovely 6 horse, but it needs brakes, and has not been used in several years. Ya know, I drove it a lot, and never used the double clutch/shifter.
                                  I've seen your van! I've wondered if I could learn to drive something that big, because if I could I would totally make it a project and build in living quarters in the front of it....

                                  My goal is to buy something in the fall, and there are nice vans out there right now, at least 6 horse sized. Not many smaller ones out there lately!


                                  Also - I wish DiBella would answer any of their emails. I've tried to contact them about prices multiple times with no response. Since I'm not ready to shell out money *this instant* I don't really want to call and bug them until I can, and said in the ad specifically that I am getting together the budget and wanted an idea of prices specifically so I'd know how much to get together. Nothin'.
                                  Originally posted by Silverbridge
                                  If you get anything on your Facebook feed about who is going to the Olympics in 2012 or guessing the outcome of Bush v Gore please start threads about those, too.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Clanter it looks more like the blue one, the F5 than the F500 picture. I'll take a picture of it on my way to the barn.

                                    I do like the idea of the horse van -it seems more stable to me. I think it has alot to do with what I've driven (box trucks, Chevy Tahoe, etc). The new ones are ridiculously expensive -like win the lotto expensive. If I had the money I'd buy one though.

                                    BTW I posted the query on a country life message board I frequent because a few of the posters there love and restore old tractors and the like, and one guy said;

                                    I think it would be great to have 1953 Ford F500 Horse Van. Those old Fords were fairly common so most parts should be available somewhere.

                                    But, as the owner of a 73 year old tractor that I restored myself, before you buy a 60 year old truck that you are planning to put back into road worthy condition, I have one recommendation: Go to the bank and withdraw an amount of money equal to the purchase price plus another amount equal to about 3 times the purchase price. Get it in $20 Bills.

                                    Make a pile with those $20 bills in the back yard, then squirt lighter fluid all over the pile. Then, light it with a match. This is probably cheaper than owning, and maintaining in road worthy condition, a 60 year old truck.

                                    Unless you have a fairly extensive shop of your own, and a good bit of mechanical ability and experience, you will have to pay somebody else to work on it for you. And a 60 year old truck WILL require constant fixing, tinkering, and maintenance. I hope you like working on old trucks, because you will get to do a lot of it. Also you want to get on good terms with one of the antique Ford parts supply houses because you will be talking to them a lot.

                                    I'm not trying to pee on your enthusiasm for this truck, quite the contrary, I love old tracks & tractors, but rather I want you to be fully aware of the reality of owning vintage machinery. I know many people who own, and use, vintage machinery. Each and every one of them will vouch for what I have said.


                                    He's a fellow who loves these kinds of vehicles so I'm thinking what he says is worth listening to?

                                    Paula
                                    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I LOVE those old horse vans. I have to admit I always kinda wanted one. To the OP due to the age of the vehicle check the frame real well. Sometimes they need frame work welding. Make sure you have some one that can do it , if it needs frame work. Good luck and I hope it works out for you.
                                      Just like our eyes, our hearts have a way of adjusting to the dark.--Adam Stanley

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        It's because they are so freakin' gorgeous. The aesthetic in the 1950s in the US was still Art Deco and Art Deco is all about the beauty of lines. You've actually got me thinking in the right direction -there are a few of those restored old trucks out here in PA and I know one mechanic who has one of those old Bedford type trucks. I'm going to swing by his shop and ask him about the horse van.

                                        Paula
                                        He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).

                                        Comment

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