This is a 1932 Ford Woodie Wagon that’s been comprehensively restored and rebuilt into a classic mid-century surf wagon, complete with removable rear seats and a Hawaiian-made Dick Brewer longboard on the roof.

Unlike the original surf wagons of the era, this ’32 Ford is powered by an Edmunds supercharged Ford Flathead V8, producing vastly more power than the first production version of the Flathead V8, which was turning out just 65 hp in naturally-aspirated form.

Fast Facts – The ’32 Ford Woodie Surf Wagon
1932 is a year that Ford first introduced the Flathead V8 as an engine option, making V8 power affordable to the American people for the first time.
The ’32 Ford, often just called the “Deuce,” helped to kickstart the Hot Rod revolution thanks to its inexpensive V8 power, and today it’s remembered as one of the most important American cars of the 20th century.
Surf wagons like this first rose to popularity in the 1950s and 1960s. Surfers would load their boards on the roof and sleep in the back of the car, traveling up and down the west coast looking for waves.
The ’32 Ford you see here is fitted with a supercharged Flathead V8 built by TATOM Custom Engines, it has a 3-speed manual transmission and a 1939 Carson City quick change rear.
The Game-Changing 1932 Ford
When the Ford Model 18 was introduced in 1932 it’s unlikely that executives at the company could have known just how revolutionary the car would be. For the first time in history a powerful (by the standards of the era) V8 engine was available at an affordable price – and the American public bought them in huge numbers, beginning a love affair with the V8 that would still be going strong almost 100 years later.

1932 Ford Supercharged V8 Woodie Surf Wagon 5
Above Image: The Edmunds supercharged Ford Flathead V8 used in this vehicle is vastly more powerful than the original naturally-aspirated Flathead V8.

The Ford Model 18 is mostly referred to simply as the Ford V8, it was powered by the first generation Ford Flathead V8, a 221 cubic inch (3.6 liter) V8 producing 65 hp at 3,400 rpm and a healthy 130 lb ft of torque at 1,250 rpm.

Although these power figures may seem low by modern standards they were revolutionary in the 1930s, and as many future hot rodders would learn, the Flathead V8 responded well to tuning and it would become a staple of many disciplines of American motor racing for decades to come.

As was common fo the era, the ’32 Ford had a steel body mounted to a steel chassis, and the front mounted engine sent power back through a manual transmission to a live axle rear end. The vehicle used leaf springs for suspension front and back, a 3-speed transmission with reverse, and mechanical four-wheel drum brakes.

The Flathead V8 would prove to be a remarkably long-lived design, it would remain in production from 1932 until 1973 powering cars, trucks, tractors, boats, and even tanks. The engine remains a popular choice for modern hot rodders, and there’s a huge aftermarket parts market dedicated to tuning the Flathead V8.

The Rise Of The Woodie Wagon
Woodie wagons rose to popularity in the early to mid-20th century, their unusual wooden bodies evoked the styling of the horse carriages that had come before them. Many woodies were built by coachbuilding companies however there were some built by major automakers, like Ford, Chrysler, Nash, and Packard.

Later examples of the woodie wagon would essentially just be wood panelling glued to steel bodywork to give the desired look, this form of woodie would remain in production into the 1960s until the look fell from popularity.

1932 Ford Supercharged V8 Woodie Surf Wagon 12
Above Image: Woodie wagons originally had all-wood bodies, not dissimilar to the wooden horse carriages of the era before the automobile.

There are still a small number of specialists who can build and restore woodies, it requires an unusual combination of metal working ability, carpentry skills, and mechanical aptitude. Original and restored woodies remain a popular subculture within the classic car community, particularly in the United States and Great Britain.

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