MARC was formed in 1952 with the purpose to “encourage its members to acquire, preserve, restore, exhibit, and make use of the Model “A” Ford vehicle, model years 1928 through 1931, and all things pertaining to the Ford Model “A,” and to promote the introduction of ideas and fellowship among MARC members.”
As time passed, it perhaps evolved from basic restoration into trying to preserve these vehicles as “how they came off of the assembly line” as closely as possible. George De Angelis, Ed Francis, and Les Henry were the pioneers in the collection of archival data. This data, with information from original vehicles, evolved into the ever improving “Restoration Guidelines and Judging Standards”. In conjunction with MAFCA, The Guidelines produced are used as Standards for everyone restoring a Model “A” Ford. As individual restorers, we choose what level of restoration we wish to achieve for our vehicle.
Following the Restoration Guidelines, Fine Point Judging is the ultimate challenge for some of us who want to acquire, preserve and restore a vehicle to the best of our ability. Some believe Fine Point judging is not for everyone. In one respect it may not be, but in another it is! The research and development of information and data about the production of the Model “A” Ford has provided us with the documentation for the both restoration and preservation.
The Fine Point Judging system is set up so that judged vehicle owners receive the results of their efforts in a timely manner. They can replace or upgrade as many areas as possible and bring the vehicle back for judging again and again.
The Model “A” Restorers Club award system uses a graduating point system that starts with meeting a minimal set of 14 points which is called Blue Ribbon. Vehicles that are simply in attendance receive a Red Ribbon. The progression of awards are based on minimal points; Third place (300), Second place (325), First place (350), MARC of Excellence (400), Master’s Award (425), and the ultimate Henry Ford Award of Excellence.
The basic requirement to enter fine point is meeting the 14 Points for a blue ribbon. To receive this award vehicles do not have to enter the fine point judging nor is it a requirement for Touring Class. Those that enter Touring Class and that meet the basic requirement will also receive a blue ribbon.
The Master Restoration Award is given to those vehicles that return for an additional judging effort after receiving a MARC of Excellence. Other vehicles can return year after year moving up from award to award. Once receiving both a MARC of Excellence and a Masters Award, they will receive a MARC of Recognition plaque if they do not attain the Henry Award status. After seven years the process can be begin again.
The Henry Award is the ultimate goal for many restorers. A Henry Award can only be awarded once for the life of the vehicle. The Henry is awarded to the all Fine Point judged vehicles that have a minimum of 465 points. They also must be within 10 points of the highest point recipient and NOT a prior Henry Award winner. If the winning total is very high, the Henry will be also awarded to any vehicle that is not within 10, but has a score of 480 points or more.
Our MARC award system has several levels of achievement attained by being judged year after year. MAFCA has essentially an Excellence Award and Best of Show. Our system includes the Masters Award, The Henry Award, Ray Mathews Award and Roger Kauffman Award which provides our restorers more opportunities for achievement. We have a National Meet every year to attain these. Vehicles can deteriorate and Guidelines can sometimes change in two years within the judging process.
There is also an Original class which honor those vehicles brought to a National Meet essentially as they are found. We also encourage these vehicles brought not to be judged, but to be viewed by our membership. The MARC of Originality is awarded to those judged achieve a minimum of 250 points. A MARC of Original Excellence is a minimum of 400 points and not a previous winner.
In 2011, your Judging Standards Committee created a new award called the “Roger Kauffman Award”. Roger was one of our most well known and recognizable members. As Technical Advisor his column in the Model “A” News was most popular. This award will honor his memory and passion for all that is Model “A” Ford. The award is not intended for the highest point total vehicle but the vehicle that Roger would have loved the most as it would have come “out of the barn”. The award is chosen by a select committee headed by Roger’s wife, Diane. The inaugural Roger Kauffman award was presented to Rob Mills’ 1929 AA Fire truck.
The Ray Matthews Award is given to the highest scoring Commercial Vehicle. Ray was one of the first to restore and exhibit AA trucks. This award, like the Henry, is only awarded once for the lifetime of a vehicle.
The Fine Point Judging process can be a rewarding experience for those who have simply an attention to detail as the vehicles left the assembly line.