Q&A: 1913 White GAF “30” restoration help!

Hello All!

I have seen from your gallery section that there are a few White “GA” series cars in your chapter and looking for some help with the restoration of my Dad’s 1913 GAF “30”.   My dad bought his White in 1971, when he sold his high school graduation gift from my grandparents (a 1909 Brush runabout). Our car was a runner before dad accidentally cracked the block in 1977. It wasn’t really his fault though. You see dad had his restoration business going at that time and he had just fired up a 1923 Stanley Steamer that day for a customer that they were restoring, and sub zero temps where forecast for our area.

The Stanley had a full boiler and water tank and the front building where his business is unheated. We have two buildings, one non heated and the back one where our cars are stored is heated and insulated, so a decision was made to drain the water out of our White’s radiator and pushed it over to front building (non heated) and put the customers Stanley in our heated back building (customers come first right!?) Next morning he came down and discovered the block on our White with several LARGE cracks in the block. In there haste they for got to drain the water out the block as a result badly damaged the block. I am glad it was taken off the road though, as we have serious accident damage from a wreck our White sustained back in the early days of its life.

Our White had a serious accident back in the early days of it’s life as we have found brazed repairs on the chassis, rear axle, steering column, right side brake hardware, front axle, transmission and also the engine. Must have got hit pretty hard as the frame was out of square to the left (hit hard on the right front near the front axle looks like it was t-boned) by about 2.5″. We had the frame straightened at the local community college, by some of their students on their frame machine.

I have been using my vacation time and have got a lot done on our ’13. We have had the frame straightened by a local community college and is painted now. Yesterday I spent all day painting and buffing drive shaft, steering column, u joints, u joint caps, brake rods, emergency brake handle and stick shift handle. Now I have freshly painted parts all over the shop waiting to go on the chassis. We also have the 2 rear wheels sanded and ready to go in the paint booth for final paint. We have gone through and mounted the transmission, rear axle, steering box, rebuilt the radiator, starter/generator, and are now getting ready to put together the engine.

Our paint color and scheme is more like Fridged Aire green, you know 1970’s puke green color from the appliances of the day, at least that’s how my mom and wife view the color. The car will be painted this what we call “Pope-Hartford” (color matched to the Pope-Hartford in Harrah’s AKA National Automobile Museum in Reno Nevada) Green with olive drab moldings with bright orange pin striping. Both dad and I run on a really tight budget so we are buffing all the bright work the best we can but will not be re-plating any thing as the cost of plating keeps rising and we can’t afford it and most of it is excellent shape. What is worn through to the brass will be buffed to a mirror shine. The original leather interior is in very good condition, might have to some minor repair but we will be using it as is.

Hopefully soon, we are going to pull the engine out of the storage and start assessing what is needed. With the block now repaired, we have turned our attention to the crank case which is in desperate need of new bearings. The rod bearings are just fine and have little wear, but the two large roller bearings for the crankshaft are badly worn and have quite a bit of play and don’t sound all that great when the crank is spun. We have been given some info on these bearings, but they pertain to a 1920 White truck so we are not sure if they are the same as the ’13.


Well you know the rest of the story on where our White is now. Hopefully we can get it restored and running in the next couple of years.  We have a bunch of left over spare parts that a friend and I would like to build into a 1914 White Roadster. We have so far acquired a front axle, spring packs (front and rear), a 1914 overdrive transmission (cast iron case for GAF 30), 1914 engine (cast iron crankcase for a GAF 30) and various small parts.  There is still quite a bit we need, so any info or leads on parts would also be appreciated. He is a young kid who has already built a Model T that impressed us all and would like to build a brass car. He is a good kid that is interested in the hobby and we would like to encourage and assist him as much as we can.

We are in need of a chassis, rear axle, steering column, and radiator. Any help in locating these parts would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks so much and any leads would be fantastic.
Clayton Paddison and Chris Becker
Portland, OR