Tag: Restomod

Restomodding a house has America swooning; restomodding a car divides us. Why? – Jeff Koch @Hemmings

Restomodding a house has America swooning; restomodding a car divides us. Why? – Jeff Koch @Hemmings

Advertisements

During the weekend, my wife is addicted to watching fixer-upper home shows in between naps on the couch. Lots of Chip and Joanna, and their various handy pals, dancing across the screen smashing old walls and painting new ones neutral grey on any given weekend. And that’s fine, considering the fact that I’m likely to nap through one of their marathons.

Staffer Tom Comerro celebrates the removal of a sheet of drywall during a kitchen renovation.Photo by Daniel Strohl

I managed to stay awake for one tale of what was pitched as a restoration project. A near-century-old home in Detroit had been sold off decades ago, then re-purchased by the original owners’ grandson, who also happened to be a contractor. He was going to bring this disheveled, fire-damaged wreck of a house back to new, he said, and would once again enjoy the place where a million childhood memories flowed. Period photos? History? All there. If it was a car, I thought to myself, I’d want to photograph it for a Restoration Profile piece in one of our magazines.

But a car is not a house (unless you’re in a motor home, which is a different question altogether). Outside, refinishing is practically mandatory on a house: Fix the crumbling fixtures, sort out the loose bricks with new mortar, and cover it all in a coat of paint. In the world of car restoration, preservation is huge. Original parts and original finishes all give a period-correct and accurate feel for what the car once was. If it needs to be refinished, restoration demands that it be done using period colors and finishes.

But it’s inside the house that the big transformation takes place. For a place that supposedly holds so many memories, gutting the inside of the place and knocking down walls feels (at least to this geezer-adjacent old-car fan) against the point. The living is done inside. What remains after the refurb is absolutely a more functional place to live, and I’m sure that the feng shui is vastly improved and makes it more comfortable. Many who love their cars and cherish the memories they generate want them frozen in amber. Car restorers will go to unreasonable lengths to make their cars look and feel correct—installing cloth wiring looms, developing methods to replicate otherwise-impossible finishes, finding entire other cars to crib parts from. No one in these home shows is looking to get a 1950s-era fridge running for the new kitchen or track down the original style sconces or re-use knob and tube wiring; those interiors are going to be full of new equipment and acres of counter space, taking up part of a previously-walled-off room that incorporates a newly-devised open-plan concept that takes up the entirety of the bottom level of the house.

Read on

1947 Ford Super Deluxe Packs Ford Racing Surprise Under The Hood, Oozes Restomod Swagger – Benny Kirk @Autoevolution

Advertisements

Without further delay, this is a 1947 Ford Super Deluxe. And no, it does not come with curly fries. In fact, in fast food terms, this 1947 Ford’s underpinnings were the equivalent of a wayward fried cheese stick that fell under your seat the last time you went through the Arby’s lord knows how many days ago. In the frankest terms possible, it was warmed-up technology from before the Second World War.

The basis for which this 1947 restomod finds its basis made its debut six years prior in 1941. Why? Well, it was at that time that the United States decided to join the Second World War. Suddenly, factories building cars and trucks for civilians started building tanks, airplanes, and artillery pieces instead. In their day, the 1941 Ford series of cars and trucks came sporting either a 90-horsepower L-head straight six engine or the ever-present Ford Flathead V8. Service engines in their day, but what Roseville Rod & Custom of Roseville, California packed under this one’s hood dwarfs any engine from the 40s.

It’s a modern Ford Racing engine, a 302-cubic inch (5.0-liter) X2302E Boss V8 rocking goodies like forged steel pistons, connecting rods, and hydraulic roller camshaft and Ford Performance cylinder heads similar to those found on a GT40 LeMans racer. Needless to say, it’s packed with technology the average engine designer of 1947 would call witchcraft. Getting everything to work harmoniously required a nearly full body-off-frame job, stripping the car to its bare body shell without its quarter panels and just the bare frame remaining underneath.

From there, Ford Racing 302 V8 is ceremoniously fastened with custom motor mounts to the stock chassis. Don’t be fooled. This isn’t another Art Morrison frame with a classic body on top. There’s even a chassis number you can look up for yourself. With that sorted, a four-speed Ford AOD transmission was paired to the engine. Why? Because as Brian of Regular Car Review once said, “some call it archaic, I call it durable.” Safe to say, an engine this nice deserves a durable gearbox. This leads to a Truetrac 9-inch diff and 3.78:1 gearing

Read on

Can a ’65 Ford F100 on a Panther-platform Chassis Work as a Daily Driver? – Jeff Koch @Hemmings

Advertisements

My wife loves her daily-driver Ford Fiesta ST to bits—the power, the keen handling, rowing through the gears—save for one thing: the gas in the shock absorbers feels more like quarry gravel. She likes cars, a consequence of growing up with a father and grandfather who ran a used car lot in Spokane in the ’70s and ’80s. She learned to drive on a Trans Am from the lot, I’m told; when we met in Los Angeles 20-odd years ago, she was driving a stick-shift car. By choice. When I talk about car things, she doesn’t automatically roll her eyes, tune out or scold me for thinking crazy. So when she has the slightest inkling about anything car-related, I try to feed that. (Similarly, she indulges me when I get a home decorating idea; it’s not often, but it happens.)

She has forever loved the look, feel and even the smell of an old truck (old defined as a time before she was born in 19-cough-ty8). Yet she knows that she is not willing to put up with the nature of an old truck, particularly if it’s going to be something reliable enough to daily. The cut-and-thrust nature of morning traffic is far better suited to her 197-hp hot hatch than it would be to a properly restored vintage pickup. The perpetually-under-construction roads in our town would feel no better with two solid axles beneath her, and there wouldn’t be enough oomph to make her anything but an impediment in traffic, no matter how adorable she looked behind the wheel. Hot rodding might be the answer, with a bigger engine and Mustang II front suspension and all sorts of aftermarket components that might well be engineered to work with a stock truck, but not necessarily with each other.

Recently, an intriguing alternative came to our attention. This ’65 Ford F100 pickup now lives on a Ford Panther chassis. Panther, you may recall, was the codename given to the downsized full-size platform underpinning the Ford LTD and Mercury Marquis starting in 1979, with other applications coming on line later. From the mid-90s through 2011, when production ceased, and even long after, a Panther was probably your local PD’s cop car of choice. And while the beefy P71 cop-car package was built for beatin’, plenty of grandma-spec Grand Marquis models came down the pike as well—and benefited from regular updates. By the year 2000, a Grand Marquis came standard with overdrive automatic transmission, four-wheel disc brakes with both anti-lock and traction control, set-it-and-forget-it climate control, smooth suspension with anti-roll bars on either end, dual exhaust, power windows, and more. All of it was rigorously tested by engineers in Detroit and elsewhere. Here in the desert Southwest, there are approximately 17 billion of them, plenty of which look just like your great Aunt Helen’s last ride—low mileage examples with questionable roof treatments and scraped bumpers—and lots of them for sale around the $5,000 mark. Could something like this be a viable replacement for the Mrs.’ little orange rocket?

Read on

Meet the rare Reo that proves originality isn’t always best – Paul Regan @Classic&SportsCar

Advertisements

It’s 1973, and Al Parkes has decided it’s time.

For too long his father’s old Reo Flying Cloud has served as little but a brooding hunk of metal beside the family’s suburban home in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

He has petrol, spark plugs and enthusiasm – but it hasn’t run since before he was old enough to remember.

It is only in the details that you realise this Reo isn’t in its standard spec

At this time Parkes is in his early 20s and life already has many ingredients of the American Dream.

He has ditched university for a career with McDonald’s, feet on the first rungs of a corporate ladder but heart set on owning one of the hot rod-era V8s that regularly shake the drive-through window.

His father, Don, is an engineer and there’s barely any distance between apple and tree when it comes to things mechanical.

The Reo’s straight-six coughs on its first taste of gasoline in more than two decades.

The last time it moved without the help of a tow was in the moments before Don was forced off the road into a ditch in ’53.

The front bumper was buckled and the wing bent – and with a growing family, a replacement vehicle with more seats was an easier prospect than repair.

And so the Reo sat, disturbed from its slumber only when the Parkes family moved home.

Like a stray dog it followed from garage to barn to driveway, including the one upon which it now sits rocking rhythmically to the tune of its tired starter motor.

Another cough. A longer splutter. Then it fires – filling the neighbourhood with thick white smoke, and Parkes’ head with dreams of a full restoration.

It was the beginning of a journey with the Flying Cloud that would go on to last most of a lifetime.

This Reo has been part of the Parkes family for longer than its owner – 71 years and counting – so he has lived a full spectrum of experiences with the coupe, from unexpected child’s toy to retirement plaything.

“My first memory of the car is in the family barn when I was about five years old,” he smiles. “We used to run up the fenders and leap off into bales of hay, hoping to avoid bruising from those great big chrome headlamps.”

At that time the ‘Old Brown Reo’, as it came to be known, was probably only about 20 years old, but such was the pace of car design in those days it already felt like a relic.

Living so close to Detroit, the streets were always full of the latest models and even though Parkes’ father was rarely in the market for new metal, he would frequently chop and change from used car lots.

Somehow the Reo lingered, in stasis between jalopy and classic.

“The first time we saw any value in it was in the early ’60s, when a guy walked past the house and offered my dad $1000 for it,” Parkes recalls. “I never thought to ask him why he said no; he worked six days a week and any time left was given to his hobby, flying planes.”

The smallblock Chevy V8 nestles snugly under the bonnet

The car’s value – sentimental, at least – was creeping up.

Don had owned the Reo for only a few years before the accident, having traded down from a 1948 Buick with onerous finance repayments.

It had been well kept in the hands of a local doctor and perhaps he felt it too good to scrap, or that someone else would reap the benefit after an easy repair.

Either way, there was never an active decision to keep it, but equally no desire to let it go. Instead it waited for familiarity to mature into nostalgia, and for that moment in 1973 when Parkes would crank it over

Read on

Smart Upgrades and Ecoboost Power Make This ’65 Mustang Accessible to a Wide Range of Drivers – David Conwill @Hemmings

Advertisements

Had the original Mustang not been dubbed a “pony car,” it could have just as easily been pegged as a sport compact. It was just a regular Ford economy car, the Falcon, slightly reconfigured for better proportions and handling. Still, it didn’t weigh much (well under 3,000 pounds, even for a convertible like this) and the 120-horsepower, 200-cu.in. six-cylinder moved a base-model convertible in a suitably sporty manner for the era. Eras change, however, and today the average driver is used to not only more responsiveness in a vehicle, but better braking, lower engine speed on the highway, and a whole host of other conveniences—even while the car drinks far less fuel than the 20-or-so miles per gallon boasted by the original “Thrift Power Six” engine, created for the 1960 Falcon.

By 1965, the original four-main, 90-hp, 144-cu.in. Falcon six had matured into a seven-main engine of considerable durability and adequate economy. Sticking with a manual transmission, as this car was originally equipped, did a lot to improve the driving experience. A floor-shift three-speed was standard equipment in a Mustang, with a Dagenham four-speed borrowed from Ford of England as an option for drivers of a sportier bent.

The base Mustang powerplant for 1965 was a 120-hp, 200-cu.in. Thrift Power Six. An inline engine with its one-barrel intake manifold cast integrally with the head, the 200 was relatively economical and moved the lightweight pony car around just fine for 1960s traffic. Modern drivers aren’t used to the kind of preplanning that comes with antique power, handling, brakes, etc

In regard to engine sizes, the 2.3-liter designation has been around a long time now for Ford. It could have described the original 144-cu.in. Falcon six, but it has mostly referred to four-cylinders. At present, Dearborn’s 2.3-liter is a direct injection, turbocharged four-cylinder that is part of a Ford Motor Company program to replace cylinders and displacement with extremely precise air and fuel management. When paired with a six-speed manual, it is the modern Mustang’s equivalent of this car’s base powertrain setup.

The EcoBoost 2.3-liter four-cylinder is the modern equivalent of the 1965 Thrift Power Six, as it is the base powerplant in current-production Mustangs. As built by Ford, the direct-injected, turbo-charged engine produces 310 horsepower. A modern convertible Mustang has a curb weight of 4,193 pounds, so the same power will go a lot further in the 2,740-pound ’65. The power-to-weight ratio is even better than a 1965 Shelby G.T. 350!

This engine appealed to Paul Cuff, our feature car’s owner. Paul, of Angel’s Camp, California, is the owner of America Road Trips, which offers collectible car rentals and road trip planning services, like itineraries for cruising Route 66. Or, for instance, if you’ve ever dreamed about driving an old convertible along California’s Pacific Coast Highway, Paul can help you out including renting you the smartly restomodded 2.3-liter EcoBoost-powered Mustang featured here.

Pre-1967 Mustangs were based so closely on the 1960-’65 Ford Falcon that the narrow engine bay precluded the use of engines any wider than the Windsor small-block V-8. Notching or removing the protruding shock towers to gain space for swaps goes back to 1960, at least. Remarkably, the EcoBoost required only a bit of trimming in this area — one advantage of using a four-cylinder, even if it is covered with turbo-charging gear.

“The concept for America Road Trips rentals spawned out of a Route 66 road trip in April of 2019,” Paul says. “That trip consisted of late model Mustangs, Shelbys, and an Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio. In mid-2019, the process of searching for the “prototype” vehicle began in earnest. I wanted to take a vintage first-generation Mustang and incorporate virtually all the features that made our 2019 Route 66 road trip seamless and problem-free.

“That trip through the Desert Southwest in springtime had actually started out with plans to drive vintage cars, “but the desire for air conditioning and a late model drivetrain won out,” Paul relates. So, what if there was some way to merge the two? To that end, he sought out the assistance of the Grotto brothers, Mike and Dave, retired law-enforcement officers and builders of an award-winning Pro Street 1966 Mustang fastback known as Toxic 66.

Paul wanted people to have a worry-free experience driving his ’65, which he purchased as a non-running but cosmetically restored car in Colorado.

Read on

Beautiful, Mexico-Made 1978 Ford F-150 Ranger XLT Is Quite Different From Norm – Aurel Niculescu @Autoevolution

Advertisements

Looking for the coolest, quirkiest, and stunning Blue Oval pickup trucks in America? Well, the Ford Era “What The Truck?” series on YouTube certainly obliges. And it sometimes expands the search to North America, not just the U.S.

Count on Solomon Lunger, the mild-mannered host of the Ford Era channel on YouTube to uncover all sorts of Blue Oval gems. He generally focuses on the F-Series pickup trucks (after all, he owns a 1970 F-250 Crew Cab nicknamed Gold Dust), but we have seen all many wonders in the past, from Luxury Pre-Runners to fabulous restomod Broncos.

Interestingly, even Solomon doesn’t know everything about the F-Series world. But he’s a quick learner and one to share knowledge. So, in the latest episode of the series, he met Rafael Garrido from the Dynasty Truck Club Inland Empire in California to discuss his rare and pride-bringing possession.

It’s a 1978 Ford F-150 Ranger XLT, but the odd thing about this sixth-generation F-Series is that it wasn’t made in America. Instead, it was produced in Mexico and according to local specifications. As it turns out, Mexican and American F-100/F-150 models from the era are not the same. This is because the Mexico-born examples were even shorter (about 3.5 in./8.9 cm) than an American Short Bed as they borrowed the chassis from the U.S.-specification 1967-1972 fifth-generation short beds.

Additionally, the entire tailgate, along with the taillights and the trim, was different, making it a bit akin to the Bumpside models. This particular ‘78, nicknamed “La Barbie” according to the owner, was discovered on Craigslist about a decade ago and immediately snatched away as a rare find. Although it still wears the original selling dealer’s plates to this very day, it’s obvious this truck went through a raft of modifications.

Read on

It really didn’t take much to turn this Super Duty-powered 1974 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am into a capable restomod – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings

Advertisements

Few cars fit the definition of restomod better than this 1974 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am for sale on Hemmings.com: (mostly) stock exterior and interior appearance, selected upgrades, better performance than the original. But scratch beneath the surface, and you’ll see that – aside from the modern automatic transmission, the flappy paddles, and the 17-inch wheels – all those upgrades are mostly tweaks to the car’s original specifications. There’s no electronic fuel injection, the brake components are all factory-available equipment, and nobody redesigned the suspension to incorporate cantilevers or coilovers or anything trick and expensive. Does that mean the mid-Seventies F-body was already a perfectly capable platform, in need of little to keep up with modern traffic? From the seller’s description:

This 1974 Trans Am started life as a Super Duty with the very rare Cordova top option. When I discovered the car efforts were made to find the original drive train and I determined it was destroyed by the original owner. At that point I decided to do a modern interpretation of a SD with it remaining as understated as possible. This car is custom in most ways except for the way it looks. Below is a partial list of modifications.

17 inch Year One Rally II wheels. Pro-Touring F-body springs all around. Pro-Touring F-body adjustable tie rods. Moog rubber bushings on flex points. Global West offset A-arm shafts. Global West Del-A-lum A-arm bushings. Competition Engineering subframe connectors. 10 bolt rear with 3.42 gears. 1LE front brakes/spindles with Porterfield street pads. WS6 rear disc brakes. Dual diaphragm WS6 master cylinder, metering block and booster. Tribal Tubes tri-y headers. 2.5 inch Pypes SGF70 exhaust system. Mallory 140 electric fuel pump. Custom fuel pickup. Ford impact kill switch for fuel pump. Blocker BHVIS drop base air cleaner. 1974 SD coded Quadrajet rebuilt by Cliff Ruggles. Performer RPM intake, water crossover separated. Edelbrock aluminum heads, port matched, flow sheet available. Harland Sharp 1.65 roller rockers, custome Butler pushrods. 1974 date coded 400 block with stroker kit. SRP pistons, 4.155 bore. Floating pins. File fit rings. Eagle 6.8 inch rods. Tomahawk cast crank. 3 inch mains. ARP 2 bolt main studs. Butler Pro-Series oil pump. Comp Cams 230/236 hydraulic roller cam. Comp Cams hydraulic lifters. Canton Road Race pan and windage tray. Northern aluminum radiator. Sanden AC compressor (R12). Custom AC brackets. 4L80e transmission. TCI transmission control unit. 3000 stall converter. Twist Machine paddle shifters. Custom Speed Hut GPS speedometer and tach gauges. Custom brushed aluminum trim rings on custom dash insert. Stock shifter with Shiftworks kit. Custome kick panels with speakers. Custom cd/usb head unit

Read on

A 1,000-hp restomod Mustang Mach I that came together through luck and coincidence – Barry Kluczyk @Hemmings

Advertisements

Tom Brown’s 1,000-hp restomod Mach I is supercharged serendipity

Early in Mad Max, when the titular anti-hero is introduced to the supercharged Interceptor, he asks, “How the hell did you get all this together?” “It just happened… A piece from here and piece from there,” was the reply from the mad-scientist mechanic Barry; and the wasteland road trash would soon be sorry he put all those pieces together. Very sorry. “It just happened,” is also how Tom Brown describes the build of his own bad, black and blown Ford—a ’69 Mustang Mach 1 that he calls Instigator, which sort of sounds like Interceptor. “The car and parts just came together.”
“We were sitting at the Woodward Dream Cruise a couple of years ago and I had my ’61 Cadillac convertible,” Tom told us. “My friend Brian Thomson said he had an NOS Northstar supercharged engine sitting in the crate, suggesting it would be a good swap into the Cadillac. I agreed and made a deal with him for it. Then Brian said, ‘Great, now all I have to do is get rid of that Mustang.’ I asked what Mustang he was talking about, and after that, it all came together.”
The next day, Brian pushed the Mach 1 onto the lift in his shop for Tom’s inspection. Brian had purchased it in 1979 and restored it in the years after, where it ultimately hit the ISCA circuit and won its class at the Detroit Autorama. The engine and transmission were removed in 1993, and, as one thing led to another, it became the ultimate man-cave accessory in his walk-out basement, where it sat for almost 20 years

 

This or That: Hemmings Auction Restomod Edition – Terry Shea @Hemmings

Advertisements

While we all have our favorite niches in this hobby, you’d have to be living under a rock if you weren’t aware that restomods have been hot for several years now, with plenty of action heating up the live—and online—auctions.

Restomods are most typically muscle cars with more modern engines, better suspensions and braking components, and often have a level of modification to the exterior and interior, with the latter geared as much toward comfort of driving as anything else. These changes can range from the more simple engine swap to a wholesale customization of a car in nearly every facet. The restomod craze is just the latest iteration of a desire to hot rod cars that goes back to the beginning of the hobby. And, like any good hot rod, a good restomod is its own animal, a one-of-a-kind vehicle that reflects the vision of its builder as much as a car can.

Read on

1963 Ford Falcon Futura Is Simple And Sexy – Shane McGlaun @FordAuthority

Advertisements

1963 Ford Falcon Futura Is Simple And Sexy

There is a lot to be said for a restomod classic that is very cool, but is very simple and not over the top. Cars with too much done to them tend to look cluttered and crowded to many people. This 1963.5 Ford Falcon Futura is a very simple car. The car is coated in black paint, which was its factory color.

The current owner is a man called Craig Wick, and he owns a custom shop known for cool rides. The 1963 Ford Falcon Futura was a customer car that sat derelict for a few years until Wick made a deal to buy it. The car had already received a Mustang II-style front suspension upgrade

1963 Ford Falcon Futura Is Simple And Sexy

Read the article here

Related – America’s Lowest-priced Pickup: 1960 Ford Falcon Ranchero