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Hot Rods '35 Ford Pickup - Austin Speed Shop build

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Anderson, Aug 5, 2015.

  1. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    A customer new to the shop approached us about this build a few months before the Roundup. He had seen a '35/6 pickup somewhere (magazine, online) and decided he wanted us to build one for him. Trouble was he didn't have one. We looked around and passed on a couple rough ones, finally landing on this guy. The truck showed up the week of Roundup (early April) and was parked to wait it's turn.
    It seemed to be a solid truck almost ready to hit the road as is. We quickly discovered that it had been hastily thrown together to sell though, missing a lot of hardware and many pieces just barely hanging on. No matter since this was going to be a ground up build. The truck was completely disassembled and sent out for blasting. What came back was a very nice frame, a CHERRY cab and bed, and some fenders with quite a bit of damage that was hiding under a lot of filler. We got to work on the chassis first. It's very standard...9" rear end with Pete & Jakes ladder bars and a Posies 2-1/2" dropped spring out back, a Chassis engineering center X-member replacement setup incorporating split bones and a new trans mount in the middle, and a Magnum dropped axle with split '37-'41 wishbones and another Posies dropped spring up front. The only real extra work was some fabricated pieces to reinforce the X-member with a pass-through for the exhaust.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015
  2. Looks good as it sits but paint can hide a lot.More to come?
  3. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    The plan for this one was for it to be traditionally styled and very reliable so the chassis was kept as simple as can be. The majority of the work involved would be in some subtle body/sheet metal modifications, starting with a 1.5" chop. The roof was cut and brought straight down 1.5" front and rear. Material was removed under the rear window to keep it stock size and to keep the weld seam close to the belt line. It was also an attempt to keep the metal in shape as it was welded back together, which worked out pretty well. The A-pillars were a little more complicated because I didn't want to stretch the roof. For a chop this small it would have been a lot of extra work and personally I prefer leaned pillars. Instead I cut the outer skin off of the pillars then chopped and leaned them back towards each other and got all the inner structure welded back together. The outer skin was then reshaped and welded back into place. The doors were done similarly, cutting out the front lower window corners (inside and out), leaning the posts together and then refitting the corners. The outer skin required a new piece to be made so it would all line back up.


    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015
  4. ronzmtrwrx
    Joined: Sep 9, 2008
    Posts: 497


    Beautiful work on the chop. I'm following this one.
    vinniedatorch likes this.

  5. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    With the chop done and the cab in place we got the engine/trans mounted. The flathead is staying on this one, H&H is building us a pretty nice turn key engine that should be here in a few weeks. The trans is an S10 T5. Fitting it required a little reworking of the Chassis engineering mount, but it really fits incredibly well in the chassis. The stock transmission cover was stretched a couple inches and new holes were cut for the shifter and new e-brake location. We used an aftermarket shifter and modified the stock shifter handle to bolt on. Pedal assembly is '39 and we should be able to use stock style mechanical clutch linkage.

    The customer had whitewalls in mind at the beginning, but a mock up with some other wheels from around the shop changed his mind.

    We bolted up the rest of the sheetmetal to see what we were working with. To tighten up the rear of the bed, we removed the factory stake pockets and replaced them with a pair of reproduction front pockets. To get rid of the stock tailgate latch and chain setup we cut the stock pieces off and remade the top corners of the tailgate. For latching we used a pair of spring loaded pins that are an aftermarket piece for some modern motorcycle windscreens. You pull and turn the knob halfway and it stays open so there's less chance of trying to close the tailgate with the pins extended out and damaging something.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2015
  6. Tn. Trash
    Joined: Apr 21, 2015
    Posts: 302

    Tn. Trash

    Outstanding work, be a shame to miss out on this build.
  7. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    Originally the customer had intended to keep bumpers, stock or otherwise. Some brainstorming lead us down a different road and here's what we came up with. Out back we got a pair of '32 frame horns and mounted them flush with the bed sides. Then made a custom spreader bar that sits almost at the edge of the horns. The frame had to be kicked up at the rear so it would not be visible underneath the spreader bar. The stock fuel tank still fits under the bed floor without any interference.
    Up front was a little more involved. The front of these '35/6 trucks is very similar to '33/4 passenger cars. The cowl shares a lot of details with them and the grill is a combination of a '34 passenger and pickup. We took it one step further and reshaped the lower edge of the grill and extended the fenders to meet in the middle under the shell, filling the bumper iron holes in the process. For headlights we used commonly available '33/4 "chopped" headlight stands (that had to be reshaped quite a bit to fit the fenders) and old aftermarket Arrow headlights that are a little bit smaller than the factory units. There will be no hood sides on this one.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2015
  8. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    from BC

    Subscribed. Have you seen this one? One of my absolute favorite cars on the HAMB, it was love at first sight...

    35_zps16bb9259.jpg 35r_zpsc39e75e8.jpg
    volvobrynk and kiwijeff like this.
  9. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    Then it was time to address the repair side of the sheet metal work. Colton Hardison (Hardison Metal Shaping) provided the lower front rear fender patches and a new fender bead to get the job going. There were many pieces that were made from scratch as well (and a couple of first and second tries that didn't work out :D) to get the fenders back in shape. The running boards required a little work along with filling in the spare tire well on the passenger side. The front fenders received plenty of attention too. The grill took a bit of massaging and got a hand full of bars replaced (including getting rid of the hand crank opening).


    I haven't taken as many pictures as I guess I should have along the way so there is a lot of detail stuff missing. If there is anything you'd like to see more of just shout! Tail lights are '37 Ford mounted using SoCal Speed Shop brackets modified with a new mounting flange to bolt on using the spreader bar bolts. Side mirror is Vintique. The steel bed floor was replaced with a wood kit from Mac's. We repaired and straightened out the factory wires that came on the truck and had them powdercoated gloss black. Nothing beats a straight spoke Ford wire wheel if you ask me. Tires are typical Firestones, 5.00-5.25 in front and 7.50 out back. Smooth trim rings and '35 caps finish them off. Here's where the truck sits today. The stance needs some fine tuning and there is a few weeks worth of fabrication left on the built. Exhaust, brake a fuel lines, steering, interior details, hood latch stuff, etc. is all to come and I will be sure to update when I can!
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015
  10. Wow great build so far. I really like the subtle chop! Thanks for posting.
    volvobrynk likes this.
  11. Tn. Trash
    Joined: Apr 21, 2015
    Posts: 302

    Tn. Trash

    All the changes to the body add up to a one of a kind truck. I really like how the mods to the lower grill/ front fenders keep the grill from looking like it`s hanging out in the air.
    volvobrynk likes this.
  12. LTM75110
    Joined: Oct 16, 2006
    Posts: 523


    Nice build,looks great,Will be watching this one..
  13. Doc.
    Joined: Jul 16, 2005
    Posts: 3,539


    That's a beautiful chop Eric.
  14. 36 coupe
    Joined: May 5, 2008
    Posts: 93

    36 coupe

    Neat truck, awsome metalwork, love it !
  15. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 8,225


    Another great thread. love the metal skills.
  16. walter
    Joined: Nov 4, 2007
    Posts: 618


    nice build!!!
  17. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 30,598


    That pickup is slicker than snot now. Awesome ideas and execution.
    volvobrynk likes this.
  18. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,803

    from Tampa, FL

    Wonderful chop... loved the A pillar treatment. Gary
    volvobrynk likes this.
  19. bct
    Joined: Apr 4, 2005
    Posts: 3,092


    How was the pillar cut so clean.? Nice work !
    volvobrynk likes this.
  20. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,535


    Outstanding work. The photographs and writing were excellent as well.
  21. flatheadpete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2003
    Posts: 9,892

    from Burton, MI

    Clean and classy. This will be one for the books.
  22. That truck is beautiful,the mild chop is perfect. HRP
    volvobrynk and lothiandon1940 like this.
  23. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,095

    Hot Rods Ta Hell

    Love the cut approach you took doing the chop. The build has some really well thought details such as the 32 rear horns/spreader bar!
    Thanks for sharing the build. Your build thread is as well done as the truck.
    volvobrynk and brad2v like this.
  24. Looks great man!
  25. That is so subtly awesome.
  26. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    Glad you guys are digging it!! This is the first full build here at the speed shop that I've gotten to start and have (mostly) creative control of. Everything else has been wrapping up projects that were about halfway built already. So I'm pretty proud of this one and excited to see it completed.
    volvobrynk, brad2v and bct like this.
  27. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,473


    Thanks! Typically I'll make an initial cut in an inconspicuous area with a thin cut-off wheel, then cut the rest with an air saw in order to remove as little original material as possible.
    volvobrynk likes this.
  28. hasty
    Joined: Jul 5, 2009
    Posts: 1,405


  29. Deuced Up!
    Joined: Feb 8, 2008
    Posts: 3,908

    Deuced Up!

    Awesome fab work. Beautiful Truck. Almost a shame to put paint on that thing!
  30. Nice work, I'm keen to see how it turns out.

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