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History Some Barris Cars Had Bad Luck!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Evel, Oct 18, 2010.

  1. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    I've been working on the Barris Blog latley and The latest one is about all the cars that came out of the Barris shop that were wrecked in one way or another.. Looking at photos of some of the cars its interesting to me that some of the most famous cars to come out of the shop were wrecked and rebuilt at some point. I decied to post this on here too cause I thought it was interesting..

    Thanks to Kustomrama and Rik for words and pics


    The Golden Sahara:

    I spoke to George about this the other day.. I asked if we have any shots of the Jim Skonzakis 1953 Lincoln before the wreck and he said probably not.. All he did to it was "Nosed" and "Decked" before they laterally left days later for the show up north. On the way home the motor blew on Dan Landon's 49 Chevy, so they decided to flat tow it behind the Lincoln.. at some point it got really foggy and out of no where appeared a flat bed truck!!! As they went under the truck they leaned over and ducked under the dash. After the smoke cleared and the cops came Geroge needed medical attention for some cuts on his face..well they were in the middle of no where and the officer said the only medical help is in the bar down the road..George ended up having to walk a few miles to the bar to find the Local Doctor!! A drunk doctor went ahead and cleaned a bloody faced George Barris.

    Jim's 1953 Lincoln and Dan Landons 1949 Chevy
    at the Accident Scene Notice the fog...
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    Dan Landon's 49 Chevy Before the Accident
    also got a little beat up..
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    After allot Cutting the Golden Sahara now a blank canvas
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    Finished Product - Golden Sahara 1st Version
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    2nd more Extreme Version
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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  2. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    Rod and Custom Dream Truck:

    By far one of my favorite Kustom trucks is the The Rod and Custom Dream Truck. It began with a 1950 Chevrolet 1/2 ton truck originally owned by Spencer Murray of Glendale, California. Spence bought the car after he went to work for Hop Up Magazine as he needed another set of wheels in addition to the Von Dutch striped 1954 Chevrolet hardtop that he and his wife shared. The car would eventually be known as "The Dream Truck", and was designed by Lynn Wineland following suggestions from more than 2500 Rod & Custom magazine readers. It all started in Rod & Custom September 1953 where The Dream Truck was presented as a rolling laboratory that readers could help develop.
    The "Dream Truck" made its rounds to all the great Kustomizers of the time.. Including Curly Davis of Davis Custom Shop in Burbank, Gene Winfield of Winfield’s Custom Shop in Modesto, Bob Hirohata, Dean Jeffries, Larry Watson, Bob Metz, And of Course Barris Kustoms added quad headlights, scoops to the roof and hood, and front and rear grille openings formed by molding together 1957 Stude baker front pans. After Bob Metz had fit the car with new rear fenders and fins, George Barris painted it bright white with scallops. The car was later painted metallic lime gold with a fresh burgundy red scallop design by Larry Watson.

    In 1958 The Dream Truck was nominated as one of 28 "Top Customs of the Year" in Motor Life July 1958. October 21, 1958, on the way to the 4th annual international Motor Sports Show in Des Moines, Iowa, the Dream Truck was Wrecked. The truck that was hauling the Dream Truck blew a tire, causing both pickups to land upside down in the roadside ditch. The car was sent back to California, where George displayed the wrecked version on car shows. Repairs of the truck after the accident was estimated at $3500 plus paint, so the remains were sold. Soon after the truck's near demise, the engine and transmission were sold, and separated from the rest of the car. The wheels and tires were stolen, and the 1956 Chevrolet Corvette steering wheel and assorted dash gauges disposed of.

    1950 Chevrolet 1/2 ton truck that had a long road of Kustomizing ahead of it..
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    First Version
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    Second Version
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    Third Version
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    Forth and Final Version Before the Accident
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    Then the truck towing the Dream Truck blew a tire and flipped
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    After the crash George displayed the wrecked remains of the car
    [​IMG]

    After this the the Car was sold off for 1000.00
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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  3. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    George's 1941 Buick:

    So the story that George told me about this one is and amusing one..
    Apparently they were hanging in Culver City and they saw some cute girls so the approached them and started talking to them. The girls boyfriends didn't like that they were talking to these Kustom
    guys and so a fight broke out and in the mist of it all the cops showed up and arrested George for being
    a part of the fight. Well one of his buddy's decided to to hop in George's car a get it out of the area so they wouldn't impound it and sure enough while George is in the holding sell he hears "APB ALL UNITS REPORT TO ACCIDENT INVOLVING 1941 BUICK" George knew right away that it was his!! what a bad night!! So it turns out his buddy was trying to get out of the area quickly and lost control and smashed the diver side.

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    After the dust settled, George decided he could fix it up and update it at the same time. The damaged 1941 Cadillac grille was replaced by a cut down 1946 Cadillac grille, the large smooth hubcaps were replaced with Cadillac Sombreros.

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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  4. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    The Ala Kart:

    The Ala Kart was one of the only cars to survive the Lynwood fire and make it's mark in Kustom history. It was sitting next to the paint booth and just happen to be where the fire stopped. While George felt like it was the end of his career the support from his wife Shirley,
    the guys in the shop and the good friends from Northern California like, Blackie who would make the drive down and help George finish the car kept him going! the Ala Kart went on to win the Grand National Roadster Show in 1958 and in 1959 and became the first show car model kit from A.M.T.

    In 1960, Owner Richard Peters father demanded him to sell the car so he could focus on the family's agri-business. George had by then made an agreement with AMT to make a model of the car, without involving Peters. In order to rectify the deal, Peters ended up selling the car to AMT for promotional purposes.


    AMT bought the Ala Kart in 1961 and the model kit was released late that year. The Ala Kart model kit sold more than 1 million kits the following year.


    In a weird twist of faith the Ala Kart in the possession of A.M.T caught fire. In order to make the car more drivable in and out of shows, the Hilborn injectors were swapped for four Stromberg 97 carburetors. In November of 1963, while the Ala-Kart was being driven by AMT's Budd Anderson, an electrical wire shorted out and melted the plastic fuel lines which allowed gasoline from the electric fuel pump to set the engine compartment ablaze doing serious damage to the hood and leaded cowl. The February 1964 issue of Rod & Custom reported the story in an article titled "The End of the Ala-Kart". For the next year, the winner of 2 AMBR awards and over 200 other top trophies was stored in a Detroit garage. After receiving many letters from Ala-Kart fans, AMT sent the Ala-Kart back to Barris' North Hollywood shop for restoration, coinciding with a re-release of the kit, which was chronicled in the September through November 1965 issues of Rod & Custom. At that time Rod & Custom proclaimed it "America’s most popular Hot Rod."

    If you look to the far right of this picture you can see the cowl of the Ala Kart
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    What it became
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    The End Of The Ala Kart
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    The Rebirth of the Ala Kart
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
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  5. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    The Hirohata Merc:

    I Don't know the story on this I tried to research it but I gotta ask George next week.. if anyone knows the story please post.. Rik?

    [​IMG]

    Also Jack Stewart's 41 Ford was hit by a train I couldn't find any pics..

    And of course the worst of them all the Lynwood Fire.. Allot of lost Kustoms..

    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  6. BaznJosh
    Joined: Oct 13, 2010
    Posts: 176

    BaznJosh
    Member

    Waiting............
     
  7. AA/Fuel34fordpu
    Joined: Mar 15, 2005
    Posts: 1,267

    AA/Fuel34fordpu
    Member

    HELLO were waiting is he wrecking one as we wait?
     
  8. Send, over. Kshhht.
     
  9. HELLMET
    Joined: Apr 21, 2001
    Posts: 1,606

    HELLMET
    Member

    Late sunday night evel. Some us gotta work . Waiting for pics .billy
     
  10. BaznJosh
    Joined: Oct 13, 2010
    Posts: 176

    BaznJosh
    Member

    I could drive around every day in the Ala Kart....... It rules!
     
  11. Evel
    Joined: Jun 25, 2002
    Posts: 9,025

    Evel
    Member
    1. 60s Show Rods

    Should all be up..had to copy it all from the blog...
     
  12. This post is what this place is all about.
    Thanks Piero.
    You make my world sparkle.
     
  13. Ahhhhh, thats better!:D
    Georges 41 Is one of those cars I would drop everything to have....or re-create, its what a custom should be. I never knew it was in an accident though, I woulda' cried!

    Thanks for the great history and shake Georges hand for me, I don't think I will ever make it to the States to do it my self.:(
    Doc.
     
  14. Rikster
    Joined: Dec 10, 2004
    Posts: 5,778

    Rikster
    Member

    Tha accident with the Hirohata Merc happened in 1955 when Robert Waldsmith owned it.
    The car was eventually fixed by Sam Gates.

    Paul Snooky Janich Barris built 1941 Ford also had a little mishap.

    [​IMG]


    And how about one of the High School Confidential move cars that Barris built... but this was meant to be. Luckily the other car Barris built survived, and is still around today.

    [​IMG]


    And even Sam's last custom the El Capitola had some damage in the early 1960's

    [​IMG]


    Jack Nethercutt's 1952 Oldmobile by Barris also had something bad happened to it in the early 1950's.

    [​IMG]


    And lets not forget the Nick Matranga 1940 Mercury that was totaled into a telephone pole in 1951... no photos.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  15. Rik, almost every post you put up I learn something from When are you writing a book, 'Customs of the World, By Rik Hoving' I know of at least 50 thousand HAMBers that will buy it.

    Doc.
     
  16. Jkustom
    Joined: Oct 8, 2002
    Posts: 1,679

    Jkustom
    Member

    Yeah really Rik! I'll buy 2!!
     
  17. Jkustom
    Joined: Oct 8, 2002
    Posts: 1,679

    Jkustom
    Member

    Btw, Piero, great thread Holmes. It seems like a lot of customs gain more from crashes than they lost!! Watsons grapevine for instance.. Might not have gotten as far as it did with all the setbacks it encountered.
     
  18. Dat Dirty Rat
    Joined: Jan 15, 2003
    Posts: 3,495

    Dat Dirty Rat
    Member

    Evel, Awesome post & great work!!
     
  19. Rikster
    Joined: Dec 10, 2004
    Posts: 5,778

    Rikster
    Member

    The R&C Dream truck was eventually completely restored. Here is a nice article on the Restoration.

    Scan by Paul Kelly

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  20. great thread.
     
  21. Circus Bear
    Joined: Aug 10, 2004
    Posts: 3,231

    Circus Bear
    Member

  22. paintcan54
    Joined: Oct 27, 2007
    Posts: 1,100

    paintcan54
    Member

    I always heard that some of Barris ars had some bad luck, but looks like most of them had some kind of bad luck.
     
  23. RAY With
    Joined: Mar 15, 2009
    Posts: 3,132

    RAY With
    Member

    Educational and interesting information.Thanks for posting and I learned something I didnt know. Another perk from being on the HAMB site.
     
  24. 76cam
    Joined: Sep 30, 2010
    Posts: 644

    76cam
    Member

    Very cool thread
     
  25. Any other pics of that Caddy 'vert in the fire aftermath picture?
     
  26. C/Gas55
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 134

    C/Gas55
    Member

    My buddy's father owned the Aztec for a good 30+ years and during that time, it saw it's fare share of "hardships". I believe the story goes that while in storage, it was stripped and then stolen. It then showed up in a North Jersey wrecking yard about to be crushed. They rescued the car and it sat in his shop here in town till he eventually sold it. It has since been fully restored.
     
  27. HRod 50
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 760

    HRod 50
    Member

    Awesome Thread, thanks Piero...

    Thank God for Barris documenting everything and also doesn't hurt he was one if not the best Kustomizers of his day and all time...
     
  28. oddrodgarage
    Joined: Jan 18, 2006
    Posts: 5,470

    oddrodgarage
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great thread Piero...thanks for taking the time to post it...hot rod history...ya gotta love it
     
  29. Makes one think that maybe George became a body-man out of pure necessity? LOL.
     
  30. notrod13
    Joined: Dec 13, 2005
    Posts: 984

    notrod13
    Member
    from long beach

    the curse might be living on, great topic and thread. I never will build a car outta a totaled one or even use the parts ... they have bad juju
     

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