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Old 12-04-2015, 02:56 PM   #1
modelafords
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Default 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I heard that some of the new 32 5W bodies from United Pacific aren't the best quality, some even being quoted for over $5,000 of sheet metal work to make them right. Is this true or are the bodies just as good as Henry Ford's?
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Old 12-04-2015, 03:46 PM   #2
TomT/Williamsburg
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I looked long and hard at getting one of their bodies - crawled all over one at the Rodders Journal Show, the one that Walden Speedshop built when still in bare steel, and a completed car out at the Colorado Nats. All very, very nice cars. I can tell the parts they sell are excellent imho, at least the ones I have bought, as I found an excellent restored body with a complete interior, seat, firewall, nice paint, all glass installed, window regs, door mechanisms, and all the external body chromed pcs that I bought some pcs for. I converted it from a rmble to a trunk. I bought this body at not much more than a Upac one. They are out there if you are ready to part with the money. This hobby is not cheap, especially when you are not doing the restoration work yourself.
Finally, these bodies are stamped inTaiwan and assembled here so they are bound to have some variations/flaws. I remember my Dad saying he never wanted to buy a new car assembled on a Friday - that same thing may be true to an extent here. No body will be perfect, repop or original - that all depends on what your definition of "perfect" is.
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Old 12-04-2015, 05:11 PM   #3
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I got my UPAC body from Dick Spadaro back when they first came out and it was apparently a body that was assembled overseas. The body line where the top met the body was going to have to be separated, straightened and rewelded as it was extremely crooked. Where the rear quarter windows were welded to the top was going to need the same treatment and finally the area where the top of the cowl attaches to the front quarters looked like they took a mig and burned the seam together. The door fit and trunk fit were very good and the over all sheet metal was straight. I was very disappointed after waiting so long. I chose not to spend the money to fix the body and moved it on. I have since seen bodies assembled in the US that have been much better. My experience when I contacted them about the body problems was a minimal response with no resolution. My experience with their parts in repairing an original body I have now has been good as everything seems to fit. If I were to ever buy another body I would go to California for a hands on viewing.

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Old 12-04-2015, 06:00 PM   #4
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

When they first came out with their header panels, they had metric threads.. Does anyone know if this was ever fixed?
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Old 12-04-2015, 06:10 PM   #5
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I put their tack strip in my Henry steel 5w and it fit really well.
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Old 12-05-2015, 11:05 AM   #6
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

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Often the answer to this kind of question is "...what does right mean?". Each person has their own definition based on their experience and goals.

I've seen a couple of the US assembled ones in person, and a good friend bought another. In all three cases the bodies lined up very nicely and looked/felt pretty straight. They do have some seams in different places (probably for ease of tooling design) from original that need to be dealt with. The examples I'm familiar with were upwards of a couple years ago, so may be different from a current product. As Gary suggested, it would be best to inspect in person first. I'll say this as a comparative, and not intended as a slam to Brookville, just a comparison on realities; the UP body had better fit and finish than either of the Brookville roadster bodies (a 32 & a 29) that I've had.

In reality, an original, 80+ year old body is going to need work to make "right" also, so pick your poison. Depending on what the local prevailing labor rate is, $5k is "only" around 60 hours work. If your objective is a laser straight black car then 60 hours is effectively nothing for labor time. If you're going to just splash it with primer and drive it for the joy of it then 60 hours is probably fat, but not by a whole lot. There's a lot more to it, but that hits some of the high points.
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Old 12-05-2015, 11:41 AM   #7
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I just got a pair of the rear fenders for 1934 Ford pickup. They fit perfect better, then the beat up repaired stock fenders I had. I hear they are going to do new doors for the 34 pickup is this just a rumor
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Old 12-05-2015, 02:21 PM   #8
Karl Wescott
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

As "Uncle Bob" noted what is "right" is subjective. Different people have different abilities to see details. What to one person may be seriously flawed at 10 feet away may be "perfect" to another at 5 feet.

Then there are the skill sets of "professional" body shop workers. Some are "parts changers" to whom massaging a dent is a significant challenge, to the diligent technician who will take a lot of time to get good results, and the magician who studies the problem, takes a hammer and makes a single swing, and wow! And they all have to charge enough money to make a decent living. So price can vary widely depending not only the expected quality of the result but the comfort zone of the technician.

Commodore Vanderbilt of New York Central Railroad fame was once asked how much his yacht cost. He replied that "If you have to ask you can't afford it!" The postscript of course is he did not know either... He won it in a poker game.
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Old 12-05-2015, 10:04 PM   #9
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

What I mean by right is that, are you getting a quality product for the money. $20,000 is a lot of money. But I agree that buying a new body would equal the amount of restoring an original body. We are very lucky that these bodies are being produced, and again it's a 32 ford, so no matter what getting one is not going to be cheap.
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Old 12-07-2015, 10:56 PM   #10
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

Was a discussion on this on the HAMB a while back. I don't know how to link you there.
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Old 12-08-2015, 12:31 AM   #11
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

My 5 window has UP parts and the fit has been great. My friends have built at least 3 and they are top notch high end beauties.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:40 AM   #12
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

Does the black EPD paint come off very easy? Can it be wire brushed or removed with paint stripper?
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:43 PM   #13
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

I simply used a DA and it stripped very easy. Some say you don't have to strip it but I did and started from bare metal again.
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Old 12-09-2015, 10:09 AM   #14
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

Quote:
Originally Posted by modelafords View Post
I heard that some of the new 32 5W bodies from United Pacific aren't the best quality, some even being quoted for over $5,000 of sheet metal work to make them right. Is this true or are the bodies just as good as Henry Ford's?
I suspect if you found a NOS '32 Ford body in a long forgotten and hermetically sealed building, you'd also have to put in a similar amount to make it "perfect". Keep in mind that the fit-and-finish requirements back in the '30s were not as tight as that of modern cars, or as tight as what people typically require of their (over) restorations.
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Old 12-21-2015, 10:35 AM   #15
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Default Re: 1932 Ford 5W United Pacific Quality

Here is a link to the Hamb thread

http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/t...uy-one.932161/
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