Last week, a friend called to say he was going to bring some various things by and see if we had any interest in them. He lives a couple hours away, and about as close to Canada as you can get without being Canadian. From what I understand, he has many acres of vehicles and parts spread out amongst the trees. He’s one of those happy-go-lucky kinda guys who always likes to do a little horse trading.
Without hesitating, I told him to load up some good stuff and come on down for a visit.
He showed up around noon on Friday, with his truck and trailer loaded with several cool items. He hadn’t seen our place since we filled it with parts, so we took him on a little tour, and he rattled off a few things he might be in the market to trade for. So, we unloaded what he brought, and we were able to make a deal that both of us are happy with.
As you can see, he brought us a couple good front clips that fit ’42-’47 Ford trucks, some hoods, fenders and a few other things. One item in particular is really interesting, and we decided to do a little more research to figure it out. My friend seemed to think it was a suicide drivers door from a Hudson Terraplane. Now say that ten times, or better yet find another one. My question is, “How did this rare door end up in the woods near Canada?”
My next questions is, “How could a fella ever figure out which year or model this door came from?” Of course Google is a big help for a lot of things, but pictures alone can’t determine some specifics. But in this case we have a tool that’s better than Google. If you read my posts regularly, then you might remember a few weeks ago I wrote about the Simpl-Filer Box we have that is full of flat glass patterns for most American vehicles produced through 1959? And now the light comes on. We measured the length and width of the glass opening on the door window to determine the block size needed for a pattern. Then we went to our book and looked up Terraplane, which was only produced between 1936 and 1938. We can quickly rule out all trucks, or the station wagon. (Which is a bummer because that would make this incredibly rare) because the block size was smaller than what we had. Then we found that there was only one pattern that was large enough to fit this door. We traced the pattern and sure enough it fit!! Now we can narrow our year to either a ’35, ’36, or ’37, two door, five passenger, Sedan Brougham. We also had a trunk lid that needed a year and model and coincidentally, it looks like it fits a ’36 Terraplane two door Sedan Brougham.
In conclusion: I am going to say that in all likelihood, this door is probably from a still very rare, two door Hudson Terraplane Sedan Brougham. How did it end up laying in the trees in North Dakota near the Canadian border? That’s for someone else to figure out, because every vehicle has a story, and hopefully these pieces will live a long life on another Terraplane.
Adventures like this are what keep me awake at night, wake me up in the morning and draw me back to the shop every day, because you never know what might show up at Angry Auto Group.