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Old 10-20-2017, 01:39 PM   #1
1930-Pickup
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Default The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

The spare tire on my late 1930 pickup is mounted on the right side.

Maybe your first thought was like my first thought; Ford's manufacturing practice was to mount the spare on the left side, so this truck has been modified at some time in the past. Statistically speaking, that's probably a reasonable assumption.

But not so fast my friends...
- This mostly original truck has never had the body off the chassis.
- The left side of the frame was never drilled for a spare mounting bracket.
- The left side splash apron does not have a mounting bracket hole.
- The right side spare mounting bracket has the same patina as the frame.
- The rear axle is 4.11, and it has a 10 leaf spring.

Features indicate the pickup was probably built between September 1930 and April 1931. The frame number is buried under the cab, so its unreadable. The engine number indicates April 1930. The title VIN is using the engine number, and I know the previous owner 'fudged' things.

I think its reasonable to say that this pickup body came from the factory with this frame. But why does it have a right side spare tire, contrary to Fords standard manufacturing practice for the pickups?

It's common knowledge that Ford used 'extra/left-over' parts for the commercial line...is the unusual spare mounting related to that? Or, could it be that the pickups were so much less expensive than the Fordor sedans during a time of the deepening Depression, and Ford had too many sedan chassis already built up?

I would really appreciate your thoughts on this mystery.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Right Side 1.jpg (72.0 KB, 160 views)
File Type: jpg Right Side 2.jpg (40.4 KB, 168 views)
File Type: jpg Left Side 1.jpg (67.9 KB, 147 views)
File Type: jpg Left Side 2.jpg (81.8 KB, 152 views)

Last edited by 1930-Pickup; 10-20-2017 at 01:44 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 10-20-2017, 01:50 PM   #2
Bob C
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

With the spare mount riveted to the frame it most likely came from the factory
that way. I think some of the phone company trucks came that way or maybe the
original owner was a big fat guy.

Bob
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File Type: jpg telephonetruckIola2002-4.jpg (67.9 KB, 72 views)
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

It's interesting that the left frame is not drilled. I thought (apparently incorrectly) that Ford drilled, or more likely stamped, all passenger/light commercial frames with side-mount holes on both sides. That would allow use of the frame on any vehicle without having to take time to drill holes for specific vehicles. Your April 1930 engine likely is not original to the truck. If it was, the truck probably would have the 28 - mid-30 "square" cab. I suppose it's possible the engine could have been installed in one of the very early (circa-June 1930) "round" cabs but more likely it is a replacement.

If the side-mount arm is riveted to the frame it most likely was factory installed - dealer installed usually were bolted. I believe you are correct that pickups had left side-mount standard - my 8/30 CCPU (sadly, sold long ago) did. However, I also believe trucks could be ordered with non-standard features, colors, etc especially fleet orders. If the frame is original to the truck, my guess is it was a special order. Whatever, the right side-mount should make entering/exiting the truck easier, at least for the driver.
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:57 PM   #4
john charlton
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

All RHD vehicles factory fitted with sidemounts had them fitted on the right side . Generally speaking 28/29 frames were drilled both sdes for the steering box . 30/31 frames are drilled on the drivers side only . With your later cab your frame should not have holes for the steering box on the right side . If it has then it could be the frame at least started as a RHD . If the frame is only drilled for LHD it think it must have been a factory special order, not likely a dealer installation .
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Old 10-20-2017, 03:06 PM   #5
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Hi Guys,
My RHD RPU has the spare on the left. That is my son-in-law sitting left and my wife driving on the right.
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Old 10-20-2017, 03:10 PM   #6
Keith True
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

I used to work on a 29 that had the spare mounted on the right.That one was an old phone company truck,I took the box off and put on a new pickup bed for the owner.It still had the phone company logo on the sides.It's really hard to determine if a car is really original or not if you don't know the whole 87 year history of it.yours has 31 splash aprons,and stainless cowl band,shell,and headlights from a passenger car.I know of a late 31 pickup with a narrow bed that you would swear is original.The original owner told me that when the truck was a year old he was rear-ended.A used wide bed was impossible to find,but he found a nice narrow bed in the junkyard that was the same color.When he was hit the headboard of the wide bed contacted the cab,and the curved scar is still there today.Completely different profile than the narrow bed headboard.
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Old 10-20-2017, 06:59 PM   #7
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by john charlton View Post
All RHD vehicles factory fitted with sidemounts had them fitted on the right side . Generally speaking 28/29 frames were drilled both sdes for the steering box . 30/31 frames are drilled on the drivers side only . With your later cab your frame should not have holes for the steering box on the right side . If it has then it could be the frame at least started as a RHD . If the frame is only drilled for LHD it think it must have been a factory special order, not likely a dealer installation .
So, LHD would have left side-mount. I may be confusing 28-29 steering box holes on both sides with side-mount holes (senior moment ). Anyway, I agree the OP truck likely was special order.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith True View Post
I used to work on a 29 that had the spare mounted on the right.That one was an old phone company truck,I took the box off and put on a new pickup bed for the owner.It still had the phone company logo on the sides.It's really hard to determine if a car is really original or not if you don't know the whole 87 year history of it.yours has 31 splash aprons,and stainless cowl band,shell,and headlights from a passenger car.I know of a late 31 pickup with a narrow bed that you would swear is original.The original owner told me that when the truck was a year old he was rear-ended.A used wide bed was impossible to find,but he found a nice narrow bed in the junkyard that was the same color.When he was hit the headboard of the wide bed contacted the cab,and the curved scar is still there today.Completely different profile than the narrow bed headboard.
True dat! Lots can happen to a vehicle during its life, much of it not obvious
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Old 10-20-2017, 07:05 PM   #8
lindy williams
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

According to the Model A Service bulletins since painters usually carried ladders on the left side of their trucks, trucks could be ordered with the spare tire mount on the right side.
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Old 10-20-2017, 07:23 PM   #9
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lindy williams View Post
According to the Model A Service bulletins since painters usually carried ladders on the left side of their trucks, trucks could be ordered with the spare tire mount on the right side.
Here is the link to a service bulletin; I think its the one you are referring to. It looks like this would be a dealer installed option, not a factory one, and thereby it would be bolted on, not riveted on like on my truck.
https://www.modelagarage.com/service...wheel-carrier/

Last edited by 1930-Pickup; 10-20-2017 at 07:34 PM.
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Old 10-20-2017, 09:44 PM   #10
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

I had a late 31 pickup 55 years ago with the spare on the right side. I don't know if it was riveted on but the guy I got it from said it had been a phone co. truck. It had a steel roof and a square bed. The guy I sold it to in '63 sold it soon after he got it to The Ford Museum in Dearborn. I saw it there in about '72 and they were using it on the grounds.
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:26 PM   #11
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Your pickup was assembled in Long Beach. The Long Beach assembly plant had a pressed steel department, it was the only assembly point besides the Rouge to press their own steel.Assembly plant managers had autonomy and worked directly with dealers, variances in assembly, especially when the steel was pressed there is likely as there was no overriding hard and set rules besides the basics for the assembly plants, managers had leeway to meet production demands...so if a right well fender was overrun, it was mixed into production.its really no simpler than that.I've been reading these:

http://cdm15889.contentdm.oclc.org/c...on/p15889coll2

it gives a fascinating look into the guys who did it...in their own words.
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Old 10-21-2017, 01:38 AM   #12
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Railcarmover View Post
Your pickup was assembled in Long Beach. The Long Beach assembly plant had a pressed steel department, it was the only assembly point besides the Rouge to press their own steel.Assembly plant managers had autonomy and worked directly with dealers, variances in assembly, especially when the steel was pressed there is likely as there was no overriding hard and set rules besides the basics for the assembly plants, managers had leeway to meet production demands...so if a right well fender was overrun, it was mixed into production.its really no simpler than that.I've been reading these:

http://cdm15889.contentdm.oclc.org/c...on/p15889coll2

it gives a fascinating look into the guys who did it...in their own words.
This is fascinating information and it makes sense.
How do you know the pickup was assembled in Long Beach?
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Old 10-21-2017, 04:46 AM   #13
john charlton
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Hi Floats
I am curious as to whether the sidemount frame bracket is bolted or rivetted to the frame on your pickup . I grew up in sunny Camps Bay much nearer to Cape Town than you .After school I worked at Mr de Beers local garage for pocket money quite a few Model As still on the road this was early fifties . This is where I caught the incurable Model A virus !!!
John in sunny morning Suffolk County England .
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Old 10-21-2017, 06:44 AM   #14
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

I had an original 160b with right side mount. Don't think the car had ever been apart
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:01 AM   #15
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1930-Pickup View Post
This is fascinating information and it makes sense.
How do you know the pickup was assembled in Long Beach?
I don't, I'm basing my assumption on it being assembled in Long Beach based on your testimony and findings with your pickup. One thing is certain, Ford did not ship completed A's by rail from the Rouge as a method of distribution.Ford saw rail as an uncontrollable cost and chose to minimize the impact by shipping parts and having regional assembly plants.its one of the few areas he knew he couldnt control cost, transportation. Over the last 90 or so years they could be driven anywhere, but my assumption is that most true pristine survivor A's around today stayed local..lets say 70%..the wild card in this is Long Beach having a pressed steel operation and the latitude given to managers to use up stock and meet dealer demand. The market was declining in 1930, any smart manager in the Ford system kept his stock of completed parts short and used up overrun.
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:06 AM   #16
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

1930 PICK UP: Fact or fiction, you have stated a lot of assumptions in your post...
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:11 AM   #17
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Like anyone else I admire the car..its a product of something equally admirable, the Rouge..

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Old 10-21-2017, 10:30 AM   #18
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Noticed that the running board splash aprons are one piece, is your dash (firewall) indented? Running board is certainly commercial. Dealers have been known to switch things around to make a sale, as in bodies. Sub frame cross member under the drivers feet should have a clue as to location of assembly plant.
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Old 10-21-2017, 12:13 PM   #19
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by john charlton View Post
Hi Floats
I am curious as to whether the sidemount frame bracket is bolted or rivetted to the frame on your pickup .
John in sunny morning Suffolk County England .
On my pickup it's riveted.

Generally speaking: Riveted if from the factory. Bolted if from the dealer.
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Old 10-21-2017, 12:17 PM   #20
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Default Re: The Mystery of the Right Side Spare Tire on my 1930 PU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Railcarmover View Post
I don't, I'm basing my assumption on it being assembled in Long Beach based on your testimony and findings with your pickup. One thing is certain, Ford did not ship completed A's by rail from the Rouge as a method of distribution.Ford saw rail as an uncontrollable cost and chose to minimize the impact by shipping parts and having regional assembly plants.its one of the few areas he knew he couldnt control cost, transportation. Over the last 90 or so years they could be driven anywhere, but my assumption is that most true pristine survivor A's around today stayed local..lets say 70%..the wild card in this is Long Beach having a pressed steel operation and the latitude given to managers to use up stock and meet dealer demand. The market was declining in 1930, any smart manager in the Ford system kept his stock of completed parts short and used up overrun.
These are good observations and I think you're probably correct. The condition of the pickup, especially as viewed from underneath, supports the idea of a low-corrosion environment, such as southern California.
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