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History History (and Build) of Just Steve's 1932 Ford Three Window

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Roadsir, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. Some of you knew my brother Steve Hendrickson, He worked for Street Rodder in the late 80's, Then moved back to Minnesota to raise a family and during this time he worked for Rodder's Digest and Motorbooks, and Cartech. He was diagnosed with MS and Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and passed away in June of 2006, leaving his wife Becky and two boys Mark and Scott. As often the case things go on hold, the cars were stored.

    Time does have a way of healing. Recently Becky decided it was time to plan for the future and sell Steve's cars, which included the 32 three window a 1960 Austin Healey Bugeye Sprite and a 1954 Chevrolet Pickup.

    I really wanted to keep the 32 in the family, and after some discussions Becky agreed to sell the car to me, as well as a lot of parts that Steve had accumulated over the years.

    The story on the 32 starts in the early 1990's while Steve was working for Rodders Digest with his office in White Bear Lake. He often stopped at a convenience store for a Soda or Coffee and a young worker noticed his Rodders Digest T-shirt and asked if he was "into street rods" then asking Steve what a 32 Ford three window was worth, and that his Uncle had one for a very long time. Steve said he would like to check it out, and continued to stop and visit, and one day he was able to make and apppointment.

    To his surprise the car was located on a farm that had been fully surrounded by retail development, and the car was located in an actual chicken coupe, slightly bigger than '32, and only a stones throw from a major interstate. After some lengthy negotiations with kids Uncle, Steve became the owner of the 32.

    Steve wrote a short article about finding the car in the April 92 Rodders Digest issue 47

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    Here are some photo's of photo's, as most of these are on slides. These that were taken the day the car was removed from the Chicken Coupe after sitting 27 years since it was parked in 1964.

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    First time out of the coupe in 27 years

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    This would qualify as a "shit eating grin" I don't think he cares that his boot is untied. Check out the plated column, the glove door (missing in the photo but was in the car) is plated, as well as the windshield side trim.

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    Steve posing with the 32 after loading it on the trailer. Needless to say he was one happy guy. This car sat for 27 years, and Steve was interested to find more history about the car.


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    Station identification while photobucket does maintenance..
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013
  2. Over the years Steve did find some information on the car but not a lot of people remember much about it. It was entered in the Gopher State Timing Association show during the 1960-1964 period. I am missing a picture of the car with the exact date. In the show the car had Hilborn Injection on the engine (show only). As soon as I locate the picture I will update the thread

    This is an early picture of the car during this era.
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    And this one is from an outdoor show in Minneapolis (Rhythm Rods). I am hoping this thread will bring forth some new pictures and additional information 60-64 period, and better yet any information to 1960 as it was believed the car came to Minnesota from California, and there was some evidence that hopped up flatty may have been in the car.

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    So here are a few more distinquishing features. The car ran a 322 Nailhead with a Buick tranny, hanging Ansen type pedals, and a flat firewall.

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    Who said hydraulic clutches were not traditional?
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    This was actually pretty decent work. Eric Aurand (Artist) heard that the Buick Conversion was done by a black mechanic and Hot Rodder from St. Paul. I need to do more research on this.

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    Pretty close confines with the Nailhead starter and the column.
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    A picture of the car as Steve was dissasembling it. Here you can see only the top of the original firewall remained.

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    Here is a mock-up that Steve was doing with the original chassis. The 32 had been back-burnered for quite a few years while he worked on the BIG OLD's for Rodders Digest.

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    And an overall of the car mocked up as a highboy, I think this was around the 2004 and the start of the HAMB (I think)

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    He decided to have the chassis done traditional in style but using a few updates. Steve had Creative Metalworks square up the chassis and they installed Ionia boxing plates, and rear X legs that clear the 3 window floor. The rear bones are '36, the front bones are split. It uses the original dropped front axle, original '36 rear end, 40 column, and is set-up for a 322 with a 37 Buick top shifting tranny. The only real modern concessions were a front panard, and dual master cylinder.

    chassis:
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    and the body, when the project stalled due to illness.
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    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013
    chryslerfan55 and volvobrynk like this.
  3. So this is where a new chapter starts. This last weekend my Dad and I and my youngest daughter went to pick the '32 and all the parts. It took two trips, 12 hours of driving and completely filled the truck bed and rented trailer (which by the way a the 12" trailer was actually 12'4" inside, the same overall length as a duece frame). Luck was on our side


    There two nailheads in there, plus a lot of early iron..
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    The body and frame are in the trailer.
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    I like a shop neat and orderly, and this has me a bit overwhelmed. I decided to go through all the box and parts to see what was there and what may be missing. I am very thankful that Steve did a great job of bagging and tagging parts as he removed them (something I normally wouldn't do) A lesson for all of us here....
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    Yesterday I got the car rolling. I thought I would share some pictures of the car as the body is really one of the nicest I have ever seen. No more words needed the pictures show for themselves.

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    Last edited: Nov 26, 2013
  4. [​IMG]

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    OK back to a few words...Here are the fenders, The right rear is a little tough. If anybody has a really nice right rear please PM me. The left front is really nice, I think it was exposed to the sun throughout the years. The front apron (not shown) is nice as well

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    And now for some mechanical stuff. Here is a rare edmunds 2-2, and a super rare set of Edmunds 322 valve covers.

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    There are two nailheads a 264 and a 322. I plan on running the 322 which will need a rebuild, there are also adjustable rockers, cams, gasket sets etc.


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    Two tranny combos. One is the aluminum bell Buick to GM 4 speed, and the second is a Buick Bell, and Buick top shift transmission that will need the Olds conversion for open drive

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    Close up of the Buick Transmission...Note the one that was in the car as this one is a top shifter.
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    I'm not sure if I like the firewall treatment or not. The whole face is recessed, not sure I like the look, and may need to find a different firewall, and clearance just around the motor and distributor.

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    This is cool, the two wheels closet are rare 3.5", and his other wheels combined with mine completed a nice set of 4", and a nice set of 4.5". I don't think I'll run the Buick drums on this car, as I want to go with an earlier look.

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    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013
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  5. So what are my plans...
    The car has now been off the road for 50 years. It deserves to get back on the road. Steve was planning on a highboy, but I really can only see the car full-fendered. So I am thinking, full fendered, Merc wheels, Merc caps, Medium Whitewalls, Leave the paint as is look.
    Plan:
    1. Continue the sorting and organizing.
    I am missing the windshield frame, and radiator which will take another trip to find...
    2. Find a right rear fender, and firewall.
    3. Add shocks to the suspension ( Steve was undecided on tube or lever) I say tube like it had.
    4. Paint, Plumb the chassis. Simple, all black
    5. Ever so lightly touch up the rust spots and keep as much of the paint as possible
    6. Decide and set-up the tranny / for an open tube conversion ( it has the open tube kit for the rear end)
    7. Upholster the seat
    8. Wiring, gauges, lights.

    More udpates and pictures to come. If anybody has any history on the car or know any people to contact please chime in.

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013
    chryslerfan55 and volvobrynk like this.
  6. black 62
    Joined: Jul 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,896

    black 62
    Member
    from arkansas

    great story ,sorry about your brother...
     
  7. 35cab
    Joined: Jan 5, 2011
    Posts: 226

    35cab
    Member

    Great story, I remember the articles and the odd reference to the car in Rodders Digest, I must check in my attic and see if I still have those issues.
    Good luck with the build and I love your plans for the car. It has gone to the right home.
     
  8. brokenspoke
    Joined: Jul 26, 2005
    Posts: 2,868

    brokenspoke
    Member

    Thanks for sharing
     
  9. cheepsk8
    Joined: Sep 5, 2011
    Posts: 424

    cheepsk8
    Member
    from west ky

    You are a lucky man, in more ways than one. Keeping this build in the family and sharing the experience with your Dad and daughter can only help the healing process. Your Brother would be proud.
     
  10. 327-365hp
    Joined: Feb 5, 2006
    Posts: 5,321

    327-365hp
    Member
    from Mass

    Awesome story! Awesome car! It's really nice that you got it.
     
  11. 1964countrysedan
    Joined: Apr 14, 2011
    Posts: 1,131

    1964countrysedan
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Texas

    Great story and thread. Thanks
     
  12. flamedabone
    Joined: Aug 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,300

    flamedabone
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I was always a big fan of Steves, I did not know he was your brother.


    Good luck with the car, it's a nice one...

    -Abone.
     
  13. 41hemi
    Joined: Jul 2, 2007
    Posts: 914

    41hemi
    Member

    So sorry about your brother. Glad you stepped up to the plate and are keeping the car. It'll be interesting to know the history of this car.
     
  14. 19indian
    Joined: Jul 12, 2009
    Posts: 42

    19indian
    Member
    from minnesota

    Glad I'm your neighbor so I can watch the build and help when I can. I never knew Steve which is my loss but his finished 32 will be all of ours gain. Growing up with you and your father he had to of been a great man and awesome hot rodder.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
    volvobrynk likes this.
  15. brady1929
    Joined: Sep 30, 2006
    Posts: 7,751

    brady1929
    Member
    from Mesa, Az

  16. big duece
    Joined: Jul 28, 2008
    Posts: 5,269

    big duece
    Member
    from kansas

    Love the car, the story is even better. Keep us posted.
     
  17. T&A Flathead
    Joined: Apr 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,564

    T&A Flathead
    Member

    I gotta believe he is smiling from way up above watching. If your brothers wife and kids are up for it , take them for the first ride.

    Great car, with a perfect plan.
     
  18. 3wLarry
    Joined: Mar 11, 2005
    Posts: 12,805

    3wLarry
    Member Emeritus
    from Owasso, Ok

    This pic is perfection in my eyes...killer stance...love the white wheels, and the headlight placement...I vote raise it back up in the front...and keep it a hiboy. :)


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  19. Hotrodderman
    Joined: Jun 18, 2006
    Posts: 41

    Hotrodderman
    Member

    I am glad you an Becky were able to come to terms on the car. It is good to see it stay in the family. I will have to stop over next week when I get back from California.
     
  20. NoSurf
    Joined: Jul 26, 2002
    Posts: 4,073

    NoSurf
    Member

    Very cool.

    You are doing something right.

    I like this look:

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    My dad's best friend had a '32 3w with a nailhead back in the early '60s in Connecticut.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  21. It doesn't get any better than that! Glad to see you have the car.

    Charlie
     
  22. big duece
    Joined: Jul 28, 2008
    Posts: 5,269

    big duece
    Member
    from kansas

    Looks like the Banker Brothers 32 3w. Love it with the chrome OEM's.
     

    Attached Files:

    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  23. agshelby
    Joined: Jan 6, 2010
    Posts: 447

    agshelby
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Wow, beautiful sheet metal - good to see that you ended up with the car.
     
  24. Glad to see it stay in the family! Rocky and I had a great time helping Steve score those Edmunds valve covers. A story in its self. One of the best "car nights" was the first HAMB Christmas party at Paso Johns. Steve brought a pile of Midwest Rodder and RD magazines that we all tore through!
     
  25. What a bitchin car and story!
     
    rpm56 likes this.
  26. Randy P
    Joined: Oct 3, 2006
    Posts: 403

    Randy P
    Member
    from Austin, TX

  27. It just doesn't get any better than this story. Thanks so much for sharing it with all of us out here in HAMBland. Will be eagerly watching the progress.
     
  28. The Banker Brothers thread last week really struck a chord with me..
    I was just showing my Dad the Brothers cars, ..I really like that car, stance, wheel tire combo etc.

    Larry, In the mock-up it's pretty much on the frame and will be a couple inches higher. I think Steve was headed down the highboy and was inspired by Genat's 32 three window, as he had several photos of this car. It may be a way to get the car on the road sooner..

     
    volvobrynk likes this.
  29. Randy,
    I was thinking about this last night, and recall the Murray tag thread list. I'll take a pic when I get down to the garage.


     
  30. DeanH
    Joined: Feb 16, 2010
    Posts: 19

    DeanH
    Member

    Way to go, Newphew! Proud of you. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help with the new project.
     

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