Rides from the Readers: 1949 Ford F-Series

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Miranda Watterworth

Hagerty readers and Hagerty Drivers Club members share their cherished collector and enthusiast vehicles with us via our contact email, tips@hagerty.com. We’re showcasing some of our favorite stories among these submissions. To have your car featured, send complete photography and your story of ownership to us at the above email.

Today’s featured car is a 1949 Ford F47. Ford hit the nail on the head with its first line of post-WWII pickup, rolling out a variety of trucks with handsome sheetmetal, comfortable cabins, and great value—all powered by tried-and-true power plants. From 1948 to 1952, you could spec your 1-ton or 3/4 ton or bigger F8 rig with a flathead V-8 or inline-six, with each making around 100 hp. However, today’s F47 is a bit of an oddball.

Wayne and Miranda Watterworth’s ’49 Ford pickup boasts a small-block Chevy 350 courtesy of Miranda’s father, Jim, a truck and coach mechanic by trade. One of Wayne’s first memories of his wife’s family involves this truck, which her father was in the midst of building from the frame up. “My guess is he wanted the best of both worlds,” Wayne writes about the incongruous engine swap. The truck is intertwined with Miranda’s family through multiple generations now—the interior word trim is even stained with the same color as Miranda’s mother’s kitchen cabinets. Towards the end of Jim’s life, a battle with cancer prevented him from getting back in the garage and completing the truck, an on-and-off project among many others. However, he pored over parts catalogues and left behind a list of everything he wanted to restore in the truck. Years later, Miranda and Wayne commissioned a restoration of the truck to her father’s exact specifications, and it’s a treasured memory they continue to enjoy today.

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