A team of classic car experts from Hagerty built a drivable 1930 Ford Model A in less than 100 hours using only parts from last weekend’s Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) Eastern Fall Meet in Hershey, Penn. Beginning with only a rolling chassis, the team of four Hagerty employees rose to their self-imposed “Swap to Street” challenge.
To illustrate the accessibility of the collector car hobby, the team kept the total cost of the project below $10,000. After completing the build, the team set out to drive 700 miles back to Hagerty’s Traverse City, Mich. headquarters. Overcoming a persistent oil leak, dead starter and some minor repairs along the way, they traveled for two days at an average of 30 mph, covering nearly 300 miles of the trip. Reluctantly, the team loaded the car in a trailer to be hauled the remainder of the way to save time, but still viewed the venture as a success.
“I consider the ‘Swap to Street’ build a total success, even though we did have to trailer it the rest of the way home,” said Davin Reckow, Hagerty Parts Supply Specialist and project welder. “The decision wasn’t because of mechanical issues we couldn’t overcome — it was merely to save time. We all have day jobs and families that we needed to get back to and at the rate we were going, we would have been on the road for a couple more days.”
This is Hagerty’s second annual “Swap to Street” challenge; last year they rebuilt a 1946 Ford pickup. While that project came with a dilapidated cab and a few other parts, this year’s vehicle started with nothing but the rolling chassis. Every other part used to build the Model A was sourced from the AACA Hershey Meet. The team used either stock or modified parts for the car, depending on what was available.
“The second ‘Swap to Street’ build brought new challenges, but we again proved that a functioning vehicle could be assembled within just a few days, solely from parts that we could find at the show,” said Reckow. “You don’t have to be an everyday mechanic or have a lot of money to do something crazy and fun with an old car – you just need the passion, desire and the camaraderie that comes within this hobby. We hope the ‘Swap to Street’ build inspires others to put a project together.”
The build was live-streamed and seen by more than 750,000 enthusiasts via Hagerty’s YouTube Channel and Facebook feeds.