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Homepage. This page: Time has taken its toll on this 1950's Ford, but I'm sure it could be restored.

Case No.4
Make: Ford
Model: 100E Prefect
Year: 1956

Sold on: eBay
Category: Classic Cars
Rusty Ford 100E Prefect project in Bognor Regis
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Project description.

Whereas the previous car to come under the microscope in the "Crumbling Classics" section, a 1970's Simca, wasn't really that crumbly, this restoration candidate surely bears all the hallmarks of a crumbly classic, and one that probably won't be long for this world unless something drastic is done with its decaying bodywork. However, with a low 280.00 GBP start bid asked, surely it'll be rescued?
First used in 1956 and driven until 1981, this car has survived this far thanks to being in dry storage. Given that it lives in Bognor Regis, the salty air that the Ford is now exposed to will only accelerate its decline into "spares-only" condition. A monocoque design, unlike the 103E Popular that for several years sold alongside the 100E, means that the condition of the bodywork will determine whether this car can be saved. The TLA registration puts this as originally being a London-based car, so hopefully only its later years were spent near the coast. The Prefect was only available as a four-door, and was positioned slightly upmarket of the basic Anglias and Populars. Chrome headlamp surrounds and the full-width chrome grille, enable prompt identification of this model head-on, even from a distance.
Mechanical parts are available as necessary, thanks to the support of clubs and a select number of specialists, so matters beneath the bonnet are less of a worry. In fact, the vendor points out that the engine is stuck, so any potential bidder will have to factor in the cost of an engine overhaul, or at the very least the search for a replacement used engine to at least get the car mobile once more. Fortunately, while the 100E's engine shares its capacity with the 103E and earlier Ford 10s (1172cc), it is a slightly less expensive engine to overhaul, thanks to the fitment of shell bearings rather than white-metalled rods, and also has a number of other useful updates, such as adjustable tappets, and a water pump.
But as already mentioned, the condition of the bodywork is key to this being a viable restoration project. Handily there are plenty of photographs in this listing. The side view reveals badly faded paint, and the onset of rust-through along the offside sill and door bottoms, which later photographs show even more clearly. Budget for inner and outer sills, door bottom repairs, and no doubt sections of underside once digging with a screwdriver commences. The nearside is similarly afflicted by tinworm, but no more than can be expected of any 50+ year old car that has been parked up and left. While the roof and bonnet are also peppered with rust stains, they look to be on the surface only, so aren't a real issue. The front bumper is wonky, either it is loose, or else has received a nerf at some point. The remainder of the trim though is present, at least in these shots, so that'll be a bonus to a restorer. The shot of the rear reveals a similar state of play, in that it appears to be broadly complete, but also suffering the ravages of time somewhat.
The boot floor isn't the worst I've seen, but elsewhere underneath there is much evidence of heavy corrosion, so buying shares in a mig welder supplies company might not be a bad idea before tackling this crumbling shell. A key area to check is the front suspension mounts, they're not entirely visible in the underbonnet photograph, but may just be surface rusty, rather than holed right through.
The attractive two-tone seat coverings have suffered, and could quite possibly be the trickiest things to repair. What little can be seen of the headlining suggests that it too will need replacing, but this should be fairly straightforward for any trim shop to handle. The seat material will take more research, as the chances of finding really good secondhand seats are slim - a rotted-out but low-mileage "spares only" Prefect might donate something suitable. The door panels don't look too bad however, so they could be retrievable.
Classic Fords are always popular, and there are many fans of the 100E range out there. This one, while needing work from head to toe, hasn't suffered at the hands of the weekend warrior who strips a car down, then gives up. The car's completeness may just see it being saved, fingers crossed. More tips on buying 100Es can be found on this page of the site.
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