1930 Ford Model A Part 1

Peter and Di Paice





What an adventure!!

Daisy was ready to rumble on 25th September at 7am. The Wyong Race Day showed she had some respiratory issues with a bit of oil loss, so stocked with 15 litres of quality oil and some smokeless additive on board we set off.





Peter and Di’s 1930 Ford Model A, “Daisy”.


She cruised like a thoroughbred to Twin Servos just south of Newcastle, ignition off, fuelled up and that was it. Couldn't start her, just cranked over and over with no sign of spark. We were to meet up with Di's brother and wife in Camden for lunch, but instead spent 3 hours with friendly strangers, throwing all new electrical spares at Daisy. Alex was the last inquisitor showing interest and knowledge. Turned out he was NRMA on first day of his holidays. He had worked on old cars (that's 1990s to him). He suggested a 3rd change of condenser, pulled his car alongside, and Di borrowed jumper leads again from servo and Daisy had a new lease of life.


Much thanks to Alex, hugs, photos and now a wonderful FB friend and we were off. Alex followed a little way, but all went well again. However we dared not turn Daisy off now so fuelled up, shopped and had a lunch break with her still running for fear of a 'no go' again. Stopped as planned at Goulburn for the night, checked all bodily fluids, polished her in readiness for next day. Got up Wednesday, pouring rain, minus 2 degrees and no chance in hell of starting in these conditions.


We went straight to Model A Ford Members Register and found Peter Liman in town. He hunted around and found some old jumper leads, brought his car around and old Daisy started first kick. Great to catch up as Peter had spent time on Gatsby movie with him. OK perhaps we need another new battery, but the current one less than one year old...


Motor running at every stop, we made our way to Wagga and first port of call was Autobarn to buy battery. Very interested and competent young guy brought out 3 different sets of instruments to check battery and thought it should be OK. However, we had often thought a starter pack would be useful to have so bought that. Went to stay with Di’s aunt & uncle for 2 nights. During this time Peter spoke with Steve Garland who sang the praises of his new battery. Yep, you guessed it - new battery ordered from Autobarn which we picked up that day, then Peter spent some hours pulling the inside of the car apart to fit it.


Brrrm! 7am next morning leaving Wagga for Ouyen, all good!! Wow, long days and finally made it to Murray Bridge where we met with Steve and Meagan for Bay to Birdwood. That was a BIG WOW EVENT with nearly one thousand vintage cars and streets lined by many thousands of cheering people all the way. Caught up with Rob Taylor, some NSWs, Kiwis and Peter's old trials mates in Angaston. Even if we did not do another event, this weekend was amazing!!


We caught up with Leon Panov, John Taylor, Bradleys, Youngs, Allinghams, Highlands and others at our motel and awaited the start of the Model A Nationals back in Murray Bridge. This event was also amazing, well-organised and much fun with mandatory and optional runs, dinners, and raffles. Mal suggested that we check the points so last to touch them was sexy fingers Peter resulting in 'no start' and another 3 hour seminar in the motel carpark. Finally after many opinions and changes of parts again, old Daisy ran. Sadly our helpers missed dinner...


Phew, we were mobile and after fond farewells were on the road again for long long days of travel with a small motor rattle. Stopped at Bendigo first night then heading east, Siri from Google sent us on the narrowest, longest straight single lane rough road one could imagine which eventually came out at Violet Town on Hume Highway. We spent a fun night with our son, wife and young pups in Milawa then another long day to Goulburn.


Oh no, Goulburn must be a jinx because as we drove into busy afternoon traffic the small motor knock became extremely loud and the rain started. Straight to Autobarn for more Monkey Snot. Left 7am next day in rain which became heavier as we proceeded to Camden to try again to meet with Di's brother. Yep made it loudly into Hungry Jacks, now confident with starting turned off for an hour. Back on the road quietest cruising speed still 75kph (on the flat).


The rain got heavier and heavier and continued to pour torrentially all the way through Sydney, every red light on Pennant Hills Road then towards Newcastle, constantly fogging windscreen while the engine rapidly became louder and louder like many sledgehammers under the bonnet, or even Al Capone's police shootout. Of course first opportunity to pull over on M1, more Monkey Snot and oil.


We had landmarks, phew made it to M7, oh wow got through Sydney trying not to eyeball any other motorists now wearing our oil; M1, woohoo can almost imagine Newcastle. Only Brooklyn Bridge mountain to climb, then Moonee, but no - every hill we had never noticed before attacked us. Twin Servos, "YES", we can do this... A more sensible person may have organised trailer to home and caught a train, but where's the excitement in that??


We had travelled nearly 3,500 kms on this awesome adventure, used 3ltr oil going and 6ltr back, very proud of my driver's ability and patience and old Daisy's heroism in getting us home. We could not believe how tough a Model A engine could be, when it is running lol! Open heart surgery in Daisy's future now, plus $$$s.


Di Paice, Co Adventurer

April, 2020