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Projects Gene Winfield custom found

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by cabong, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. cabong
    Joined: Nov 29, 2005
    Posts: 335

    cabong
    Member

    Leland Grantz is not a hot rodder, but he sure is a custom guy. I met Leland kinda by accident, while offloading a car in the wee burb of Notus, Idaho. A fellow comes over and we start talking cars (surprising, huh). Something was said about customs, and he tells me of a kruzer that resided here in our little valley. Seems it is a Gene Winfield built custom, which makes me skeptical right out of the gate. He wasn’t sure about much, but I figured it was worth looking into. Now, jump forward about two days. I had told my good friends Nick and Ken Smith about the chance meeting, and the next day, Nick drove his stunning ‘40 Plymouth sedan delivery down to the local grocery store, and a lady that works there says to him “my Dad had one just like that”. Now think about that……Have we not all heard the same story. Check it out…. Her Dad DID have one, which he had sold a couple years earlier, and HIS Dad had bought it NEW. And, not only that, HE (her Dad) had a 1950 Chevy convert that he bought new…..and he still has…..and it WAS customized by Gene Winfield.
    [​IMG]

    Now jump forward about 8 hours (no sense wasting time) and I meet this young lady for the rest of the story. Seems her Mom and Dad are in a care facility nearby, so I meet her over there, and visit with the Dad, Leland Grantz. After many hours then and since, of fascinating conversation, I realize that what we have here is one of the nicest, most pleasant, down to earth, guys I have ever had the pleasure to meet. His wife, who is in the same facility, and his two daughters, have convinced me that this Chevy has been a focal point of Leland’s entire life. His eyes absolutely sparkle when we talk about the Chevy, and we have been known to get loud enough that the nurses check in to make sure Leland is okay. Turns out that like so many rods and customs, this one was never really finished.
    [​IMG]
    To be Continued.....
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  2. cabong
    Joined: Nov 29, 2005
    Posts: 335

    cabong
    Member

    Leland kept changing his mind about what to do with the grille area, so a local club offered to finish it up, and apply a paint job. Their hearts were in the right place, but they didn’t seem to grasp just what this great custom wanted to be. They were off a couple decades, and did not do history of Leland’s custom any favors. Enough said……..I decided that if Leland would allow me, I would take on the task of taking this jewel back in time, to the mid fifties, where it belongs.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I somehow convinced Nick that this fence would really be fun to paint, and am very pleasantly surprised at the great 50’s ideas that are coming from this young snapper. Needless to say, every detail is cleared with Leland before proceeding. I have talked to Gene Winfield, and he indeed did the bulk of all modifications to this Chev, and we are working on a really great surprise for Leland. I might add that it was easy for Gene take credit for the work, since one of his websites has a picture of Leland’s Sedan delivery in front of his shop. Leland actually helped Gene move from the infamous “chicken Coup” to a new shop.
     
  3. cabong
    Joined: Nov 29, 2005
    Posts: 335

    cabong
    Member

    I will update this site with all progress, and look forward to any and all comments. Please extend any comments and words of encouragement to my new friend Leland, and I will make sure that he sees them all, and respond.

    We have started to remove the offensive grill and painted bumper.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  4. skoh73
    Joined: Apr 17, 2008
    Posts: 1,553

    skoh73
    Member

    WOW!!! Great story. Subscribed and can't wait to see more.
     

  5. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 14,541

    Squablow
    Member

    Looking forward to updates! That purple paint job is to customs what the Fat Boy's version of the Twist is to oldies music.
     
  6. williebill
    Joined: Mar 1, 2004
    Posts: 2,605

    williebill
    Member

    Love stories like this one. Get Leland to join the HAMB now. Might put a little sparkle back in his step.
     
  7. 19Fordy
    Joined: May 17, 2003
    Posts: 6,923

    19Fordy
    Member

    I wonder if Mr. Winfield remembers the car. He is on the HAMB.
     
  8. cabong
    Joined: Nov 29, 2005
    Posts: 335

    cabong
    Member

    Yes, he remembers the car and Leland very well. There are plans in the works for Gene to visit Idaho and while here he will visit both Leland and the car.

    Keep watching for updates on this thread.
     
  9. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 25,272

    Jalopy Joker
    Member

    So, it is a small world after all. with a chance couple of meetings an important piece of history is rediscovered. it is terrific that you are making the effort to finally give this custom the attention that it has been waiting many years for. Hope that LeLand is in good enough shape for you to take him for a ride in it when you finish the work you are doing. plus, hoping that you will get a very good picture of LeLand by the car to share. it is a shame that it took so long to get it to this point. but, as we all know that there are many projects out there that will never be finished. Thanks for sharing this with us.
     
  10. Dave L
    Joined: May 27, 2007
    Posts: 233

    Dave L
    Member
    from Idaho

    Wow, Cool! right in our back yard.
     
  11. cabong
    Joined: Nov 29, 2005
    Posts: 335

    cabong
    Member

    Leland is in a nursing home right now and not on the internet. I'll show him these posts when I visit.
     
  12. billsill45
    Joined: Jul 15, 2009
    Posts: 784

    billsill45
    Member
    from SoCal

    Great story elements: You, Leland, the car & Gene Winfield ... obviously, good Karma (Carma ?!) is involved. The car gods have smiled upon you.
     
  13. williebill
    Joined: Mar 1, 2004
    Posts: 2,605

    williebill
    Member

    I assumed that from your original post, or that Leland might be in assisted living now. If this thread goes as long as some of them do, I was thinking you might get him to speak on the HAMB. Good on you for what you're doing.
     
  14. 2dr_sedan
    Joined: Mar 25, 2005
    Posts: 265

    2dr_sedan
    Member

    Awesome story, can't wait to see how it turns out.
     
  15. BrerHair
    Joined: Jan 30, 2007
    Posts: 4,491

    BrerHair
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Holy shit! Fantastic, just outstanding! Right on, brother, right on.
     
  16. Rikster
    Joined: Dec 10, 2004
    Posts: 5,781

    Rikster
    Member

    Very interesting
     
  17. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793

    tfeverfred
    Member

    Wow! Great story. Great people and a cool car. This could be a movie.
     
  18. Subscribed, looking forward to the updates. Say hi to Leland for me!
     
  19. Mark T
    Joined: Feb 19, 2007
    Posts: 1,868

    Mark T
    Member

    It looks like a '55 or '56 Mercury convertible was used for its sheetmetal, windshield and possibly its convertible top.
     
  20. Okie Pete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2008
    Posts: 3,252

    Okie Pete
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    WOW what a great story . Hope the car gets finished and put on the road.
     
  21. Well Mr. cabong, if you believe any of those story's of earning a good place in the after life by doing Good while here on earth you are well on your way to the Pent House. Not every one given the same opportunity would have done right by your New found Fiend. There was a reason for that Chance Encounter.
    The Wizzard
     
  22. A.D.D.
    Joined: Dec 9, 2011
    Posts: 197

    A.D.D.
    Member
    from PacNW

    WOW! Very cool that she survived all these years in the same hands!

    I can't speak for everyone interested...... but I would LOVE to hear as much of the story as possible from Mr. Grantz. Would it be possible for someone to go visit him in the nursing home bearing gifts....and a tape recorder (or note function on a smartphone). If he agrees, it would be easy to get the conversation flowing....then transcribe everything into words.

    This is history. "The way it really was"..... here's your chance to ask exactly how someone went to one of the MASTERS and commissioned a piece of artwork.......

    As far as the car, to each their own. What always strikes me: is that a lot of these cars surface that are NOT to my taste... but they are REAL. At the time they were built, someone tried to express what was relevant at the time.

    in 2013...we pick and choose what we like and don't like, then build a "Tribute". Like it or not... this is the "Real Deal". And as such, it should end up looking like what was originally intended.



    IMO: I think a baseline should be established. What year was the work started? What influenced Mr. Grantz to go with the changes that have been made so far (or did he give Gene Winfield free rein)? The timeframe would be KEY. This car looks like it was WELL on it's way to a radical Kustom. Like it or not, it would be a dis-service to build (re-build) this car as a 2013 fantasy of what they used to look like.

    Maybe all of this has been worked out.... and will be revealed in time........


    Maybe a Photoshop contest could come up with a bunch of grille design proposals that could be printed out and presented to Mr Grantz?

    Just spitballin........... take it with a grain of salt.






    COOL FIND! I LOVE THIS STUFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
    Mconcha likes this.
  23. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,126

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Awesome story, and I look forward to following your progress with this old Winfield custom.
     
  24. Stories like this are what make the HAMB a great virtual environment hang out.
     
  25. Wow what a great story and a great find...can't wait to see the end result
     
  26. I gotta see how this turns out.
     
  27. SHughes
    Joined: Apr 11, 2008
    Posts: 23

    SHughes
    Member

    That is so kool!!!!

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  28. Wow! thank you for sharing, cabong! Looking forward to seeing and hearing more about this Chevy and it's future.
     
  29. Rudy J
    Joined: Sep 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,485

    Rudy J
    Member
    1. Austin HAMB'ers

    Wow!
    Very cool


    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  30. 64cummins
    Joined: Aug 4, 2009
    Posts: 130

    64cummins
    Member
    from kansas

    This is awesome I like reading stuff like this relics lost in time if only cars could tell there story's my hats off to all that find customs. Hot rods or one offs in hiding


    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     

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