1 March 2017

Video: Barn Find Hunter - Suburban Detroit

Barn finds in suburban Detroit? Tom Cotter managed to find some in an “automotive Disneyland:” from a 1914 Princess and an aluminum-bodied , aircooled 1920 Franklin to a one-owner (who still owns it) 1956 Ford Crown Victoria. The most impressive find of the show? Discovered in a storage unit sits a one-of-one factory hot rod station wagon, authorized by then-Ford president Lee Iacocca himself. Too bad it isn't for sale…

46 Reader Comments

  • 1
    john binggely Arizona March 1, 2017 at 16:24
    The red & white Crown Vic in Detroit is 55, not 56
  • 2
    Stephen SetteDucati Boston, MA March 1, 2017 at 16:29
    I lived in the Detroit area for 4 years. The car events were unlike any other. People you met, with our common thread, were real and genuine with stories to last a lifetime. Alex's collection is one of many undiscovered treasures in Michigan. Great video!!!
  • 3
    Dan Denning Montrose Co March 1, 2017 at 17:01
    That's a 1955 Crown Victoria . Also how did he get the dent in the left read fender in his yellow wagon? Great videos nice old cars.
  • 4
    Joe Melton Colorado Springs March 1, 2017 at 17:21
    The Vickie is a 1955, not a 1956.
  • 5
    Burt Harwood Longview, WA March 1, 2017 at 17:32
    Bought a new '67 Country Sedan, 390 2V & converted it to a 4V. Loaded with 6 people,skis, boots, poles, and luggage - it was very fast climbing mountains to the slopes. Never had to hang iron in the snow, it would always go.
  • 6
    SK SoCal March 1, 2017 at 17:43
    The Crown Vicky is a 55. Franklin mimicked Renault with that sloping hood; an early example of borrowing upscale European styling for American cars that still continues today.
  • 7
    Burt Harwood Longview, WA March 1, 2017 at 17:48
    Bought a new '67 Country Sedan, 390 2V & converted it to a 4V. Loaded with 6 people,skis, boots, poles, and luggage - it was very fast climbing mountains to the slopes. Never had to hang iron in the snow, it would always go.
  • 8
    Danny frye Beckley wv March 1, 2017 at 18:09
    This video says this is a 1956 crown Victoria. In fact it is. 1955.
  • 9
    Danny frye Beckley wv March 1, 2017 at 18:10
    This video says this is a 1956 crown Victoria. In fact it is. 1955.
  • 10
    Charles Mallia Toronto, Ontario, Canada March 1, 2017 at 18:37
    Hi, I loved watching Barn Find Hunter-Suburban Detroit. Where Tom introduces the viewers on first segment to Alec Attard. When I heard his accent I recognized it to be of Maltese heritage. I also noticed the Maltese cross emblem on the grill of his 56 Crown Victoria. Being of Maltese heritage myself, I was wondering if I could get Alec's contact number or email so we could talk about some of his vehicals introduced on the clip. Looking forward to hearing from you. Regards, Charlie
  • 11
    Danny Saucier WA March 1, 2017 at 19:32
    This is your best show ever! both the Crown and the Bird are great buys in my humble opinion, and probably sold by now thanks to your show! You are definitely growing on me, Tom!!
  • 12
    Ralph Perez GA March 1, 2017 at 19:39
    Enjoyed video amazing cars, keep them coming, makes me want to go out and look only problem is that I want to buy every car I see. Regards RP
  • 13
    Danny Saucier WA March 1, 2017 at 19:46
    Holy cow! are you absolutely sure that is a 56 Crown Vic? After closer observation, and I never would have doubted the original owner, but I BELIEVE THAT IS A 55!
  • 14
    Bob Nichols Catasauqua March 1, 2017 at 19:47
    I love that '55 Crown Victoria! I had a '55 Fairlane 2 door hdtp. when I was 16. Rebuilt the engine and did some stupid stuff to the car. It was automatic, converted it to 3-speed on the floor. The car originally had a/c, vents were in the top of the dash. Tore out everything except for the heater box and threw it away. I had the heads done at a local speed shop with double valve springs with aluminum retainers and perfect circle valve seals. I had a 3/4 race cam in it and I got a full set of rockers for it at the Ford store from a '57 312 for the Latham blower option. After installing those the motor had an awesome lope. Wish I kept working on it, it needed a rear axle housing which got bent when my brother put it sideways against a curb. Couldn't keep tires on the right rear. It also needed a full repaint and body work to finish it.
  • 15
    Louis Pratt Caldwell, ID March 1, 2017 at 20:44
    There are a lot of vintage cars stored in hangars at local airports. I know of one hangar alone where you will find a 1953 GM M211, 1965 Buick Wildcat, 1966 Buick LeSabre, 1969 Buick Wildcat and a 1942 Vultee BT-13.
  • 16
    Robert mencl Home March 1, 2017 at 20:46
    Pressure relief valves? Lol
  • 17
    Ed Cornell St. Louis, MO. March 1, 2017 at 21:02
    That Crown Victoria is not a 1956. It is a 1955.
  • 18
    Thomas Wynkoop Hollywood 33020 March 1, 2017 at 21:33
    A great video. You called the Crown Victoria a 56 but the interior with the non deep dish flat front steering wheel show it to be a 55. Missed that in editing but still a great video. Or was there a crossover?
  • 19
    Phil Skinner S. California March 1, 2017 at 22:11
    This Station Wagon was owned by a noted collector of 1967 Fords for a number of years and shown regularly. Hardly a true barn-find, it is indeed a one-of-one with 428 (anyone could order one), a four-speed, (could be ordered but in 1967, not available in a station wagon) and bucket seats with a console, (again, not available in a station wagon) and all of that if factory verified via a Marti report. One of the most unique station wagons ever factory produced!
  • 20
    Buck Broatch Seattle March 1, 2017 at 22:41
    The Crown Victory is a 1955
  • 21
    autoartman Seattle March 1, 2017 at 22:45
    I want to own the T bird!
  • 22
    Barry Victoria, BC March 1, 2017 at 23:27
    Tom, in today's episode you said the petcocks on the engine were to relieve pressure. They are actually "priming cups" to allow you to introduce fuel into the combustion chamber to ease starting when cold. Here is a quote I found: "A priming cup has a small "cup" on the top, which holds a slight amount of fuel. While the engine is off, a valve is turned (below the small "cup"), and the fuel is allowed to drain into the combustion chamber. There's no injection or pumping involved, just Mr. Gravity allowing the fuel to head toward the center of the earth, stopped by the piston of course. Priming cups are very helpful on a lot of early cars, as they were almost always using updraft carburetors, so only the vacuum of the piston downstroke is drawing air/fuel mixture up and into the cylinder."
  • 23
    mark tarsenko nokomis fl March 2, 2017 at 14:17
    hey tom, the crown vic is a 1955 year. they had round front turn signals. 56 models had rectangular ones. I did not see the battery in the video but 55 was last year for 6 volt systems. my first car,56 ford
  • 24
    Robert Ratliff Arlington tx March 2, 2017 at 17:02
    Love the series keep hunting
  • 25
    GENE KENNEDY New York March 2, 2017 at 17:35
  • 26
    rick m 33813 March 2, 2017 at 18:15
    open it up
  • 27
    John OH March 2, 2017 at 19:02
    I think that's the first time I've seen Tom drive off in another car !? Did he buy it? Is that why it's not for sale? :-)
  • 28
    Charlie welling Texas March 2, 2017 at 19:33
    How in the world can you be passing off a 1955 Crown Victoria as an 1956? That's a 1955 grille and turn signals as well as the body side mounding. How could such an error be made?
  • 29
    Danny Saucier WA March 2, 2017 at 10:17
    Did you determine the year of the Crown Vic yet? Still looks like a 55 to me!!!
  • 30
    Burt Douthit Red Lodge,Montana March 2, 2017 at 10:51
    That's a 1955 Ford Crown Victoria, not a 1956.
  • 31
    Bennett Iowa March 2, 2017 at 11:00
    Good video but it is a 1955 Ford Crown Victoria (not 1956).
  • 32
    Tom Texas March 2, 2017 at 11:03
    Nice video, but the Crown Vic is a 1955; not 1956. I would have thought someone representing Hagerty would have it right. But otherwise, I really enjoyed the video. What a wagon!
  • 33
    tom vasiloff columbus, oh March 2, 2017 at 11:18
    How do I can in touch with the "automotive Disneyland" guy who has the 56 Crown Vic and the 57 T-Bird for sale
  • 34
    Pat Detroit, MI. March 2, 2017 at 12:43
    I've known about this car for nearly 10 years now and I have seen it in person on many different occasions. The current owner used to display it during the Woodward Dream Cruise in the same lot with our Superformance Cobra group. The current owner of this wagon, and our Cobra group shared a lot at the WDC with the guy who runs the Ford Performance/Racing hotline and who also owns the Total Performance classic car parts/speed-shop (Clinton TWP., MI.). His name is John Vermeersch. The owner of this wagon was good friends with John. Also, from what was told to me, the story on why the car was originally built in this configuration is a bit different from the way it was explained in this video. From what I understand, yes, the original owner did want the maximum horsepower in his station wagon, but the primary reasoning behind installing a 428-4V AND a 4 speed was that the guy regularly tool long trips with his family where he hauled a camper and he needed the power and wanted the fuel economy available with the extra gear in the tranny (4 speed Toploader vs. the 3 speed C6; which the car would "normally" be equipped with). That car is still "all original/all matching" though; paint, radio, knobs, EVERYTHING!
  • 35
    jim comer Gastonia, NC March 3, 2017 at 17:06
    saw a Chrysler SW with a 440 and 4 speed (white) on BAT this past week. Anyone know more about that one??
  • 36
    Bill Maloney Wilmette, IL March 3, 2017 at 06:13
    Wow, I want that station wagon! Very very cool.
  • 37
    Patrick Guest Valparaiso indiana March 3, 2017 at 09:52
    I'm a big MG FAN, looking to follow what you have found.
  • 38
    SM05 MT March 3, 2017 at 22:10
    Really enjoy this series. Wonder what the single favorite find is by state? And which states Tom hasn't even searched? You know those American Picker guys are doing research off this series, right?
  • 39
    Mike Riga Long Island, NY March 3, 2017 at 10:58
    Great video!! I sure am interested purchasing the Crown Vic. Nice car.Is it still for sale? Can you put me in touch with the owner?
  • 40
    tom Virginia March 3, 2017 at 11:10
  • 41
    Roger carlson Canton, Ga. March 4, 2017 at 14:21
    Wood grain trim was standard on all Ford Country Squires and Mercury Colony Park wagons.
  • 42
    John P. Mass March 20, 2017 at 19:47
    I remember reading the story of this 1967 Ford Wagon in a car magazine back in the summer of 1978.
  • 43
    JJ here May 3, 2017 at 21:50
  • 44
    JJ here May 3, 2017 at 22:44
    Pretty disingenuous to make it sound like this guy found it in a barn. A well known '67 collector has/had it since 2001 and it wasn't in a barn. Leaves me taking all his other stories with a 'serious' grain of salt. To bad the term "barn find" as well as many other terms in the hobby are is so well over used and occasionally abused.
  • 45
    Robert Foster Boothbay,ME May 5, 2017 at 11:20
    This series is as good as the insurance company. Keep up the great work, John.
  • 46
    Jesse Bowers California August 8, 2017 at 01:08
    That station wagon wasn't for sale huh? So.. ... how exactly did Tom Cotter buy it? As he pointed out in his book, Motor City Barnfinds, he did indeed buy it. Page 199.

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