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History !!FOUND!! Grist Bros. chopped 41 Willys Build updates, History & Pics?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ether, Sep 22, 2009.

  1. EdGrist
    Joined: Sep 27, 2009
    Posts: 44

    EdGrist
    Member

    Website is not moving nearly as "Fast" as I would like for it to. Having video is in the plan. Not sure how I'm going to do it yet though. The car is really looking good Chad. I'm also looking forward to seeing the Merc after paint!
     
  2. DDDDDDDD.....This just in.....
     

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  3. Anderson
    Joined: Jan 27, 2003
    Posts: 6,309

    Anderson

    that's a damn shame :mad:
     
  4. EdGrist
    Joined: Sep 27, 2009
    Posts: 44

    EdGrist
    Member

    Wow, that's a great looking frame! Thanks for the pics Ether.
     
  5. johnny bondo
    Joined: Aug 20, 2005
    Posts: 1,547

    johnny bondo
    Member
    from illinois

    uhhh, what........ this thread is a bummer......
     
  6. ShakeyPuddin55
    Joined: Dec 22, 2004
    Posts: 1,895

    ShakeyPuddin55
    Member

    Seems that chassis belongs to a fiberglass street rod......:(
     
  7. Mr.Bomba
    Joined: Apr 13, 2007
    Posts: 357

    Mr.Bomba
    Member

    :eek: If the current owner wants a street rod he should sell back the willys to the Grist family and start out fresh! why ruin the History of such a cool car? no disrespect but thats just my opinion! ;)
     
  8. The current owner is trying to locate the original chassis and build it also. Im told he is doing this to have the option of two styles with one overnight body swap,,,,HINT, HINT, HINT!
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2011
  9. landseaandair
    Joined: Feb 23, 2009
    Posts: 4,247

    landseaandair
    Member
    from phoenix

    What about the wheelwells? That new frame is pretty narrow in the back.
     
  10. Im tryin to lean him that way!!

    Ive been working to get my Merc on the road so here are a few updated pics. I had to trim the cross supports I made for the body to sit on the new frame. Trying to locate the front clip to the cowl and then the body to the chassis. The Grist coupe used a 4 piece fiberglass front clip also.
     

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  11. This will make your day, here are the earliest pictures known of the Grist Bros. Willys. The photos were taken by Eric Rickman of Hot Rod Magazine at Lions in 1958. This was before black wall tires, glass front end and lettering.
     

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  12. MalibuKasey
    Joined: Dec 2, 2010
    Posts: 151

    MalibuKasey
    Member

    What a great thread!! I follow alot of the other fellas in saying its a shame its not going back to its former glory... HOWEVER, the fact that your obviously bringing a nice SOLID car back to the road is a great thing. You do good work... no doubt about it.
     
  13. Heres a few update pics. Got a little time today to make and fit the wheel wells. Tired, and going to take a doctor recommended whiskey seven before bed!!!!
     

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  14. JLGrist
    Joined: Sep 28, 2009
    Posts: 36

    JLGrist
    Member

    It's looking really good!
     
  15. EdGrist
    Joined: Sep 27, 2009
    Posts: 44

    EdGrist
    Member

    Ether, your work continues to amaze. You are doing excellent work, and yes, the car will be very solid and sitting on a nice chassis. Dad would be proud.
     
  16. voodoo1
    Joined: Jun 27, 2007
    Posts: 453

    voodoo1
    Member

    That's awesome!
     
  17. It almost physically hurts to see this car being built this way.
    Your work is superb Ether, its just that this car should be itself.

    Doc.
     
  18. Minewithnoshine
    Joined: May 17, 2007
    Posts: 938

    Minewithnoshine
    Member

    Top notch work!

    Someone needs to fill the owner in...pro street is dead
     
  19. Thanks guys for the comments, Ive said my piece on the matter to the owner and my opinion is just that, an opinion. I committed to the build before we knew what it was we were working on and will continue with it till finished. The cars sole isnt lost but instead just updated, I guess, and nothing more than a set of wheel wells, anouther chassis, pie crust slicks, and a liquid wrench to the firewall would take her back a few decades!!
    Ill keep all posted as it progresses, stay tooned!!!
     
  20. 66Coronet440
    Joined: Oct 26, 2009
    Posts: 367

    66Coronet440
    Member

    Holy shit, I love the way the car looked back then. I hold the same sentiments as many of the others here, but excellent work either way.
     
  21. EdGrist
    Joined: Sep 27, 2009
    Posts: 44

    EdGrist
    Member

    Ether, neither you nor the owner have any reason to apologize. You are putting new life in a classic Willys with a "one and only" chop. The car was doomed to the rust pile. As you say, it could always be made into a Gasser again. But, for what? My dad, Floyd Grist, passed away back in 1974 not knowing where the car was. Here we are in 2011 and not only do we know where the car is, we know it is being put together in such a way it'll be here for many, many more years. I don't care that it doesn't have the original chassis. The original chassis is long gone. The chassis that is under it now is state of the art. The kind that dad and Uncle Ralph could only dream about. The Grist Bros ran on a shoe-string budget. I was there. I was there when dad would do brake jobs and engine overhauls for about everyone where he worked for money to buy parts and go racing. They had some sponsorships, but they were nothing like the big boys, yet they ran with the best of them. They were innovators, always trying different stuff. Anyway, I'm proud of the work you and the owner are doing on the car. It is my plan to travel with my sons and see the Willys when it gets done. Keep up the outstanding work.
     
  22. koth
    Joined: Apr 30, 2007
    Posts: 161

    koth
    Member

    Wow, what I would give to be a fly on the wall and watch you make those rear fender wells. Thanks for sharing your work, it is very inspiring!
     
  23. a few more
     

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  24. JLGrist
    Joined: Sep 28, 2009
    Posts: 36

    JLGrist
    Member

    Very smooth... great job!
     
  25. biscaynes
    Joined: Mar 16, 2008
    Posts: 1,655

    biscaynes
    Member

    well said...
     
  26. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 21,338

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great thread and I don't know why I never found it before. That is one of "those" race cars that those of us in our sixties grew up seeing in almost ever rod or drag racing magazine we bought either in the adds or a racing photo. And one that you instantly recognize. I hope the owner wakes up and decides to put it back to be as close to the drag car that we all remember.
     
  27. EdGrist
    Joined: Sep 27, 2009
    Posts: 44

    EdGrist
    Member

    The Grist Bros Coupe was powered by a MEL style 430 bored and stroked to 501 cubic inches. It had Mickey Thompson aluminum rods and pistons and a Dempsey Wilson camshaft. Ted Cyr was running the MEL style engine in his dragster and shared some information about drilling out the oil galleries. Anyway, I've recently found a forum about the MEL engine and would like to share it with anyone interested. Here is a link to the Grist Bros thread on that forum.

    http://ford-mel-engine.com/viewtopic.php?f=110&t=861&p=3548#p3548
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2011
  28. update and ducking!!!!
     

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  29. Nice metal work there Chad. I'll have to get down there and check out the Merc one day. That baby really looks nice!
     
  30. Congrats to the Grist family for honorabe mention in Hot Rod Deluxe and hopefully some well deserved recognition.
     

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    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

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