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Built My first Hot Rod fifty years ago

Discussion in 'New to the H.A.M.B.? Introduce yourself here!' started by Johnny Sweet, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. Hi guys my name is Johnny Sweet and I've loved Hot Rods for over fifty years. I first saw Ed Roth's T Bucket and fell in love with it. I built my first Rod in 1959 a 32 Ford what the hell else would it be back then. Pick up with a three foot pick up bed and a 48 Merk 59 AB with a 39 trans. Three 97"s and a flat cap Malery. Aluminum heads. You know all the good stuff.
    I'm a GMI guy that learned how to sculpture in clay back in the day.
    My dad clames I could weld at 8, and run a milling machine at 12. I've been fabricating my whole life.
    Had my first idea for an invention in Aug 1968. Two piece valve covers so that the top came off when adjesting the valves. Made patterns and sand cast six set. Took them to Joe Herudka MR Gasket. At the time they cost $10.56 a pair to manufacture. Was told I had to get them down to $1.25 per unit. They never went any further than that. Still have one after over forty years. It took 17 years before anyone else came out with the same idea.
    Had the House of Flake in Toledo Ohio from 1968 till 1970. Custom Metal Flake paint jobs for $385. That would be $3850 in today's world.
    Got into fiberglass that same year and have been building patterns and molds for over forty years.
    I realized early on that all the things we like when it comes to Hot Rods and Customs can cross over into other trades and products. Ive been manufacturing one product of another ever sense.
    I manufactured 450 Motorcycle side cars.
    Raced Hydroplanes from the early 70's untill 1988. Had notable boats like the Miss Bardahl. I donated it to the Unlimited Gold Cup Hall of Fame and Museum. Have been the fastest man on water in New England for over thirty five years.
    Ran Super Modified Race cars the ones like the World of Outlaws in 1982.
    Had a company building 55 T Bird reproductions in 1981 with 25 employees.
    Unions suck, I sold the company to Equity Automotive because of it.
    The entire time I was racing and had manufacturing company's my buddies would bring in there rods to work on them.
    In 1981 I took a 64 Chevy 2 door and cut 32" out of it making it a one seater. Sprayed Imeron paint on it.Drove it 90 thousand miles.
    Moved to South Carolina in 1988. The Rod action is great.
    Came out with the Sweet Engine Protection System the same year. There a cover system that keeps dirt, water, sand and bolts out of your engine when it's being stored, or being rebuilt.
    Came out with the Sweet fiberglass display, or set up engines in 89. I have built the Chevy small, and Big Blocks. Complete 59 AB Flathead, and my favorite the 392 Hemi with blower.
    Built the worlds slowest AA/FD. Electric powered 3MPH. It's running around Florida some where.
    In 2000 I designed Kayaks for the US Olympic team, and worked hand in hand getting the National Geographic Team ready for a trip to Tibet. They ran the worlds most dangerous river and two didn't come back. They where never found.
    What's some of this stuff have to do with Hot Rods? Some of the techniques, and process used in a lot of products can relate to how the cars where designed and manufactured even back in the day. When your building your rod you have to re manufacture parts and processes at times.
    It all relates.
    In the last five years I've built Cobra Molds. 23 T Bucket molds. Designed molds for the Extreme Street Gravity Sleds. They have been seen on TV, and there on You tube.
    Sculptured a 51 Merk lead sled.
    In 2008 I designed the new Victory Crossbow Motorcycle Trike for the 2010 model year for Lehman Trikes out of South Dakota. The Crossbow is in the dealerships as I write this.
    I'm building a 55 Chevy Gasser for a buddy of mine. we hope to finnish it some times this year.
    I hope I didn't take up to much space writing about a few of the things I have built. When I've read some of the introductions that others have written I felt they probably had so much more to give, but didn't think to. I would like to extend an invitational to any of you like minded Rodders. If you have an idea and would like to take it to the next level. I possibly could help. I will not steel your idea, because I have my own, and in the last forty plus years I have only seen one idea that was as good as my own. Not that yours wouldn't be good, but I don't need your ideas, but only the opportunity to help. I guess it's a Carma thing, if you get my drift. I'm 65 with a lifetime of experiences, and a library of information. We have to help others so they can be the best that they can be. When you do it, it will come back to you. For those of you that will never help anyone but themselves. Do me a favor and never email me. But for all others if you need help developing a product, or help with the information on how something is manufactured, or the materials used email me.
    Respectfully Yours,
    Johnny Sweet
  2. hrm2k
    Joined: Oct 2, 2007
    Posts: 3,695


    Welcome from Maryland Johnny. great intro............we hope you have some pics of all this
  3. That is one HELL'uva Introduction................thank You !
    Welcome to the H.A.M.B., where there are a lot of People with skills on your level, and in numbers as well............then there are even more who like myself, are just in AWE of people who have experienced skills and adventures such as you have accomplished. But !
    we like rods and kustoms as much as anybody!!!

  4. big bad john
    Joined: Aug 11, 2010
    Posts: 4,727

    big bad john

    .....Johnny.....welcome from of the best intro's I've seen for'll fit right into the H.A.M.B.......enjoy the ride....Big Bad John

  5. Great intro.
    Welcome from Michigan.
  6. k9racer
    Joined: Jan 20, 2003
    Posts: 3,091


    welcome from bama.. Are you Bob's brother or Randys Uncle??
  7. R and S HotRods
    Joined: Jun 16, 2010
    Posts: 153

    R and S HotRods
    from Hell

    Welcome from Tennessee... great intro! lets see some pics!
  8. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh

    Welcome aboard from Maryland! Dig the CARolina's!

    Cruising season is longer and something I enjoy when visiting my Dad there in the South. Well, South of here that is........

    Enjoy the HAMB.
  9. Hi Guys:
    I'm going to try and post some pictures of some of the crap I have worked on and built over the years. I still have to figure this web site out. It's first class. Once I get my feet wet Ill be OK. Looking forward to making new friends.
    Later, Johnny Sweet
  10. Welcome from Connecticut......Looks like you have a very colorful and varied past. Look forward to seeing those pictures.
  11. das858
    Joined: Jul 28, 2010
    Posts: 720


    Welcome from Nebraska!
  12. HotRodDean
    Joined: Jan 11, 2007
    Posts: 249


    Welcome to the HAMB, what a great intro!! Love to see some pics
  13. Welcome to the HAMB! You sound like quite a man! R~R
  14. Hi Guys:
    I can't figure out how to post pictures. Is there a help section? I like this HAMB thing, but without some help I'm screwed.
    Later Johnny Sweet
  15. Welcome to the HAMB! This is one of those cases where a guy should be able to jump right past FNG and NEWBIE. Great Intro, glad you are aboard.

    As far as pics, go to the main board, go to "Questions and answers", there are quite a few threads regarding posting pics.
  16. I was wondering what the meaning of FNG, was? Newbie pretty much is self explained unless as guy is as dumb as a goose. How about grenade inspector. What the hell does that stand for?
    I have a buddy who is going to help me place some pictures. Once I have the steps figured out Ill be OK.
  17. A buddy of mine instructed me on how to post pictures the other night. So for those that asked I have made a start. Check em out. I will try and keep the pictures in there respective groups. Bare with me I'm still learning.

  18. tcb-1
    Joined: Jul 19, 2008
    Posts: 228


    welcome aboard from Shawnee, KS!
  19. I've posted some picture of just a few of the crazy things that I've built. This is starting to get interesting. The site is so large and vast. It will take some time to understand it all. I've met some new friends and only one crumb. The percentage looks good for like minded frendly people. You have to love this car stuff.
  20. pool
    Joined: Jun 24, 2005
    Posts: 318


    Welcome aboard Johnny! That is an intro from a guy who truly has been there and done that. This board can't have enough members like you. I wish you were closer, I'd pick your brain clean as I imagine there are a lot af good tales to be told. Pool.
  21. For those that are interested I learned how to post some pictures. Some of you asked, so check em out. I'm still working on separating the different projects, and will post more this week. Thanks to all that asked

  22. More pictures have been posted. Hope you enjoy them.
  23. Welcome from Florida
  24. -Brent-
    Joined: Nov 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,010


    Welcome to the HAMB! Excellent introduction, thanks for sharing.
  25. :) More pictures have been posted.
    I started a new project today will give more details soon. This one will be totally different from anything I have done in the past.
  26. kingpins
    Joined: Apr 27, 2009
    Posts: 623


    whats up johnny. thanks for your kind words on my cars. very impressive intro there. and you dont live to far away from me. id love to see your stuff in person one day.
  27. Black Panther
    Joined: Jan 6, 2010
    Posts: 1,704

    Black Panther
    from SoCal

    Now THAT'S an intro! Welcome buddy....
  28. sideshowrob
    Joined: Apr 14, 2008
    Posts: 167

    from australia

    good work. welcome.
  29. Total Performance
    Joined: Jan 4, 2011
    Posts: 1,496

    Total Performance
    from Nor Cal

  30. More pictures have been posted. A new album having to do with how I designed a 52 Desoto grill for the 50 Merk I sculptured. The other is of pictures when I was manufacturing 55-56 T Bird reproduction kit cars thirty years ago. Hope you enjoy them.

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