‘Old Ugly’ 1972 Ford F-250 4×4 Becomes Cheap and Cool Project

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1972 Ford F-250

After hauling rocks in the desert for decades, this old Ford pickup is destined for a new life at the lake.

Chances are, you’ve taken on at least one seemingly hopeless Ford truck project in your life. Few of us can resist the allure of a cool project, especially when it’s dirt cheap. And that was certainly the case with Ford Truck Enthusiasts member bobbytnm, who recently took the plunge on this beaten-down 1972 Ford F-250 that carries a very interesting history.

“Several weeks ago, my uncle asked me if I was interested in a 1972 F-150 4×4 truck for $500. After a bit of back and forth and a few pictures, I bit. My uncle and his buddies have a small mining venture in the desert outside of Tucson, AZ. They used this truck for many years hauling boulders out of the desert. Long story short, they are shutting down operations and have been clearing things up and have lost their storage where this truck was. So, with a bit of wheeling and dealing and a thousand mile road trip, I closed the deal on this truck and the trailer I used to haul it home on.”

1972 Ford F-250

Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Well, the trip home proved rather difficult, anyway.

“When I left, I didn’t know what the hole pattern on the trailer was. Naturally, it was a 5-on-5 pattern and my spare is a 5-on-4 3/4. Two of the trailer tires looked pretty new, the other two looked fairly weather cracked. What could possibly go wrong? Sure enough, just east of Wilcox, AZ I threw all the tread off the left rear tire of the trailer. I limped down the highway at about 40 mph with one axle chained for about 60 miles into Lordsburg, NM. I couldn’t get a tire but finally found someone who would breakdown the tire off and put it on my trailer wheel so we could get back up to highway speeds.”

1972 Ford F-250

Fortunately, the OP was able to eventually get his new/old Ford home with no further incident. And he decided to retain the nickname his uncle had given it many years ago – Old Ugly. Which was pretty easy to do after he discovered some interesting features on the truck.

“That stuff on the air cleaner is the remains of some cactus. It looks like several dried out lobes of prickly pear. If you take a look at the first pic I posted there is tons of prickly pear cactus all around the truck.”

1972 Ford F-250

The OP doesn’t plan on performing a 100-point restoration on this old Ford, either. True to its past, it looks destined to spend the next several years of its life “working.”

“My brother and I have some property down at the lake. I think this truck will probably live down there and be our lake truck. Those tall skinny tires ought to slice through the sand like nobody’s business. I’m really liking those 19.5s, so I’ll probably stick with them. I’ll get the mechanicals in order and go from there. But I don’t think I’ll try to fix up the exterior beyond finding and re-installing all the trim and lights.”

This cool old ’72 Ford is sure shaping up to be a cool project. So be sure and head over here to watch as it all comes together!

Join the Ford Truck Enthusiasts forums now!

Brett Foote has been covering the automotive industry for over five years and is a longtime contributor to Internet Brands’ Auto Group sites, including Chevrolet Forum, Rennlist, and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other popular sites.

He has been an automotive enthusiast since the day he came into this world and rode home from the hospital in a first-gen Mustang, and he's been wrenching on them nearly as long.

In addition to his expertise writing about cars, trucks, motorcycles, and every other type of automobile, Brett had spent several years running parts for local auto dealerships.

You can follow along with his builds and various automotive shenanigans on Instagram: @bfoote.

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