1929 Ford Model A

The Car | Projects/HowTos | Maintenance History


1929/03/22 Car is built [original engine A1250032 (junked 1939?)]
Probably week of 3/24 or 3/28 (before mid-April for sure). Color is likely Andalusite Blue (found under current paint job). Owned by someone South of Alexandria, MN.


~1937 Car bought by Ken Brundell from Reuter Brothers Garage
(at ~40k miles, he owns it for 2-3 years)


1939/~03 Car bought by Albin Ljung (great grandfather)
Mileage: 45674, Price $60 It needed an overhaul right away, if you drove it over 35-40 mph then it would burn so much oil that it would fill up with blue smoke. Immediately after buying the car, Albin got some money and bought a '36 Ford.


1939/~04 Car bought by Allen Ljung (grandfather)
At that time, my gramps had $50 in a savings account at the bank (birthday money and the like) and the bank failed. My great-grandfather Albin told his son, Allen, that because Albin owed the bank $50, and the bank owed Allen $50, he would just transferred the debt to his son, which he paid off by giving him the Model A. (Allen pointed out that this may well not be true, that his dad might have just been covering for his son's loss)
Allen installs Ward's rebuilt engine A3904879 (1930/09/04)
1940/07 Allen puts in an overhauled short block or rebuilds engine, either way it now has special pistons and high compression head, and overhauls the car, puts in a Philco Transitone radio, gasoline heater (South Wind), fins. Installs fog lights and a lit radiator ornament "looked like a christmas tree coming down the street"
Gramps believes that it came with 19" wheels, even though they evidently didn't have them until 1930. His evidence is that it has the gravel shields on the back, and the steering is the same as the 30s. He also said that very few people changed wheels on cars before the war.
1941/Spring Painted grey w/ red pinstripes
1942 Driven from Minnesota to Chicago by Allen in hopes of fetching Irene Hanson (my future Grandma :). In Fall it toured the North shore of Lake Superior ~1950? There's an engine A3385936 (1930/05/13) wrapped in plastic in 2012 - long piston? Donovan seems to remember that Allen put in an engine in the 50s. Allen's notes mention "overhauling" in the early 50's plus another painting.
1965/05/30 Allen installs "short piston" Sears rebuild A4518372 (1931/03/31) (current engine) (Though Donovan's notes claim that this was actually the A3385936 that was put in in 1965. Then again, Donovan also told me he thinks this was the engine put in in the 50s (above) - it seems that Allen's mind is like a RAID hard drive about some things, so he might be right on this one). Not only that, but there's a memo that Allen wrote in 1991/05/26 which mentions the engine as A4518372 ("To Whom It May Concern" - probably for registration purposes since the original identification (engine #) has changed)
1971/Summer? Car repainted
1972 Up until 1972, Allen Ljung drove the car to work every day, and would tow a trailer to deliver cabinets around town. In 1972 he stopped driving it so much because he was worried that the "kids around town would be climbing all over it"
At some point between 1939 and 1989 it receives it's 3rd engine, which has had the valves redone already.
1991/05/15 Donovan purchases two tires and two tubes to be shipped to Allen in prep for picking up car. Allen put the tires on (but used old tubes)
1991/05/25 Mileage: 175,222. Changed oil (40W)


1991/05/26 Car bought by Donovan Ljung (father)
Mileage: 175258, Price $350. Driven 506 miles from Alexandria, MN towards Illinois (it breaks down outside Janesville, WI and gets towed)
1991/07 Mileage: 175764. Replaced timing gear
1991/09/15 Mileage: 175883. Changed oil - 3.5 qt 10W40. Drained, flushed radiator, adjusted distributor (from .008"->.018"!). Replaced distributor rotor as old one had a hole burned through - though still working!.
1992/02/02 Mileage: 176087. New tube in rt front. Adjusted front brake bolts. Adjusted right front brake rod. Install repro inside door handles and window handles.
1992/03/22 Mileage: 176113. Started replacing spindle bolts. Right one was okay, but left very worn.
1992/04/28 Starter motor probably rebuilt?
1992/12/14 New battery
1994/02/28 Replated: radiator shell & crank cover & cap, 2 headlight buckets/rings
1995/07 New upholstery installed (ordered 1994/09/21) - in time to drive April Allen to wedding to marry son Michael.
2001/03/30 New battery
2005/11/19 New battery
2009/01/23 New battery


2012/04/05 Car bought by David Ljung Madison
Mileage: 178,191
Transported to San Francisco! Current status: The 3rd (maybe 4th?) engine is probably close to 50k miles (engine number A4518372, 1931/03/31) and will need to be bored out at some point. Gramps remembers that the camshaft was noisy and probably needs to be rebushed. The 2nd engine (crated up) was close to 50k miles and was running, but probably burning oil and needs to be rebuilt. Front end seems to wobble when coasting.
2012/04/06 Second drive in SF. Clutch lever arm splits (which is evidently common). Tried binding it, welding it, replacing it with similar (but not close enough) from bell housing in spare parts), and temporarily replacing with wire to no avail, had to tow home, ordered a new one.
2012/04/17? Replaced clutch lever. Car shifts!
2012/04/20 Seems that battery is going dead. Also, turn signals stopped working. While driving the car, it starts to backfire considerably, turns out that the carb was coming unbolted from the vibration. It also seems that the choke "post" has detached rotationally from the carb, so only pulling on the choke works, but turning it does not.
2012/04/22 Repaired the upholstery on the back of the driver's seat (it had come detached). Fix turn signals (loose connection). Replaced one of the hood hinges - two more are still bad. Tested horn, it works, but button doesn't - temporary wired around it to a switch on the dash. Awooga!
2012/05/14 Craig's Auto (great place!) replaced the two worst tires and looked at the wobble. The two front wheels are slightly bent, so they moved them to the back (big improvement), but also noted that the drivers kingpin is very worn.
2013/01/01 Mileage: 178,511
2014/02/17 Tightened generator wires (lights were flakey). Moved third brush to increase charge current (still needs more?). Tightented fan belt - need new belt and radiator gasket and manifold gasket(s).
2014/03/11 Replaced radiator gasket, manifold gaskets and carb gasket. Test replace of some of the windshield gasket with silicon sealant.
2014/06/06 Replaced kingpins (both sides). Stearing oil -> gearbox (140W). Wobble is gone! Also, exhaust manifold gasket had blown, replaced but manifold needs to be machined.
2015/12/28 Points replaced by Craig Auto - and now it starts up great! I noticed that the speedometer cable was making a grinding sound, so I pull it out - it's super sticky from dead grease - and clean it and add lithium grease. Now the speedometer is pretty stable.

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