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Putting a big motor in a little car has long been a tradition of hot rodding. The first and most obvious transplant was the Ford v8 into a model-a. The dry lakes changed forever… And then of course, the overhead motors came out. It was only a matter of time before they found themselves between the rails of an early Ford of some kind.
I think my favorite early overhead has got to be the big early 1950’s Cadillacs. They have good proportions when compared to the firewall of most early Fords and they fit snugly between Ford frame rails. Of course, they also match up nicely with the LeSalle gear bangers of yore to complete the package. Still, my favorite aspect is the story that just has to be behind such a transplant.
Punk kid with no respect for authority finds a brand new yet totaled Cad at the local salvage yard. He gives a wink to the yard owner, hands him over a fifty, and stabs the giant engine into the back of his truck. A few weeks later, his neighbors call the cops as they tire of the constant noise coming from the kid’s driveway. Tuning those big Cads can be a challenge and our hero has his hands full…
Once the cops leave and the parents go on vacation for the weekend, the kid finds himself with a deuce roadster powered by the biggest overhead known to man at the time. Somehow, he thinks he has this thing licked.
Flatheads will never die… But overheads aren’t going anywhere either!