The door panels were sent off for upholstery using white leather and black Ultraleather in a traditional pattern. Before installing the door panels we installed new latches and window regulators from Bob Drake Reproductions. When it came time for inside door handles we wanted to dress the truck up a bit, but still keep the early Ford flavor. To that end we ordered a set of 1940 Ford Deluxe passenger-car handles and bezels for the doors. The art-deco detail lines add the perfect finishing touch to the doors.
The seat was reupholstered in a traditional 4-inch pleated design. A white top panel on the seat brightens things up. We installed our own wind lacing and hard headliner from LeBaron Bonney. This fiberboard headliner fits well, and while we would’ve loved to do a photo how-to on the install, it was so clumsy that is was a matter of two people in a small cab pushing the panel into place, marking and doing some slight trimming and then installing the piece for the last time.
Since our truck didn’t have a rearview mirror we purchased a Model-A rearview mirror, and after removing the mirror from the bracket we put the bracket in a sheetmetal brake and bent the appropriate angle on the plate. Three carefully drilled holes and the modified Model-A unit was mounted to the truck.
Finally we turned our attention to restoring the old heater in the truck. The heater was in the truck when we purchased it and we had no idea who manufactured the unit until we stripped off several layers of paint. As it turns out it the heater is an old Chrysler unit. We stripped it to bare metal, repaired the defroster flap, filled a couple of dents and holes and painted the heater black with a gold fan shroud to match our gauges. But we wanted to somehow make the heater look like it belonged in the truck and that trick turned out to be the addition of a 1947 Ford horn button we purchased from Dennis Carpenter Reproductions. Three very carefully drilled holes allowed the stainless ring to be clipped to the front panel and voilà–an almost genuine Ford heater.
The finishing touch came in the form of a reproduction decal for inside the glove box door. This is a minor detail that adds that certain something when you open the glovebox. Reproduction decals are available for virtually every truck from Jim Osborn Reproductions.
We are real pleased with our series of interior modifications and the blend of parts keeps the vintage theme alive while providing modern steering, seating comfort and accurate gauges. CT