1923 Model T Ford Truck

In 2014 I began re building a 1923 Model T Ford chassis into a compact flat bed truck based on the products of the H. H. Babcock Co. of Watertown N. Y. in the 1920's. This would incorporate a wood bed and Cab. This was not my first Model T Ford build. Earlier I built a 1914 Model T racer/speedster. Click HERE to read about that car.

Many years ago a friend of mine- John Bickensderfer and his father purchased a Band saw mill and proceeded to saw a quantity of Red Oak logs into 1 inch lumber. John stacked and stickered some of that lumber at his home, hoping to use it one day in his wood working. Shortly afterwards he passed away after a short illness. His wife Joellen tried to find a buyer for several years but had no success. She called me and offered the wood to me if I would come and get it. I did. I stored it away to wait for the right project to come along which I knew would at some point.

With all of the parts collected that I would need for the 1923 chassis, I began research into the different Truck bodies of the period by consulting vintage periodicals available for viewing on Google Books. In a Oct. 15, 1920 edition of the Commercial Car Journal I found what I was looking for, an advertisement for the Babcock Vestibule Cab for the Ford. At that time Ford sold a Model T one ton chassis which had no body on it. With that you could build your own truck by buying a body set that meet your purpose from any of the numerous Companies around the country that made them.

Now I knew that I had the right project for John's Oak lumber. With the Chassis overhauled and restored, I designed the Cab and Bed using the Babcock advertisement as my guide. Following are several views of the truck under construction.

By the late summer of 2016 I finally had the truck finished and ready for showing and cruising. Of course we named the truck "Johnnie" after my good friend. The first three shows we took the truck to, we won five awards for it which were-

!4th Annual Super Cruise Car Show sponsored by the Akron, NY Chamber of Commerce- Chamber's Choice, First in Class and Tallest Truck

Pembroke N.Y. Car Show- Best of Show

2017 Corvettes of Buffalo Super Cruise- Best Truck

Following are pictures of the finished product.

When people would look it over, they often commented that it was a "Rolling piece of furniture".
The black leather strap hanging on the door is the window regulator which would allow the window to be lowered to three different positions.
Features found in the cab were clock, instrument light on top of the steering column and glove compartment.
The matched lumber on the roof is 1/4 inch Tulip Poplar.
The Stainless Steel bed strips were bought from the Mar-K Co.
The custom Stop Light and Turning Signals made from a Fruit Cake tin.
The green attachment setting on the exhaust manifold is a Cab heater, the fan blows air into the open end which is heated as it passes over the manifold.
The accessory Camco Water Pump.

In 2019 we decided to sell the truck and now it resides in North Carolina.