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Hot Rods Step Plates – Why?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Stan Back, Dec 3, 2020.

  1. denis4x4
    Joined: Apr 23, 2005
    Posts: 3,677

    from Colorado

    Here’s an original step plate from the 1930’s. Lot’s of dealers had them cast with the dealership logo. I have one from a Denver Ford dealer. View attachment 4897975 6830CE81-2700-4E4D-84D6-75012954B861.jpeg F82550C2-EC43-4C1E-A7FE-403FC8978EF1.jpeg
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2020
  2. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 28,419


    When I first built my 48 in 1973 they were the hot lick for any pre 48 with running boards wide enough to put them on plus AD Chevy trucks and F- and F-100 up through 56. One of those resto mod things that people though were cool at the time. I'm thinking that I just never talked myself into ordering a set and spending the money as unless you found them at a swapmeet you had to order them from a vendor by mailing off a check or money order then and it was a lot more reality than hitting buy it now on the computer.

    The do serve a purpose, If I had had them on the 48 maybe my dad would have propped his foot up on the step plate rather than than my freshly waxed painted running board. The only time I ever raised my voice to the man in my life was to holler at him to get his cowboy boot off the running board. He for some reason liked to pose with one foot on the running board and one hand on the bed rail on my freshly painted at the time truck.

    As several said, it was primarily a big fad in a certain time frame and a lot of rigs you see them on were first built in that time frame and haven't changed much.

    Just think, if they had never printed Low Rider magazine we wouldn't have all these junked up cars with all the extra doo daahs outside of East LA or the Ozark back woods.
    Lil32 likes this.
  3. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,822


    I like that panel a lot, but why did it get a visor? :rolleyes:

    winduptoy and Lil32 like this.
  4. When we built my first RPU, no one was making reproduction running boards. The car had been a delivery truck all it's life. The tops of the diamonds on the drivers side board were actually worn through. The step plates were the only way to cover the holes. It wasn't a like, or dislike situation, simply a solution to a problem.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2020
  5. Oldb
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 212


    Sometimes form follows function. Interesting on a forum that makes such an issue about period correct a item that was in vogue years ago now does not meet muster.

    bchctybob, Packrat, clem and 7 others like this.
  6. I got a set of them with my model A when I bought it. After reading all these post I'm sure glad I never put them on.
  7. RJP
    Joined: Oct 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,777

    from PNW

    Step plates-why? They're traditional.
  8. dwollam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2012
    Posts: 1,256


    On my '31 Roadster pickup I actually welded up all the holes worn through the diamonds! Took a lot of work but they came out nice and ya can't tell it from the top at all.

    Lil32 likes this.
  9. Ned Ludd
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 4,201

    Ned Ludd

    My first thoughts were of all the other running board permutations this leads to. There were different shapes of "floating" step plates like those, and longer floating boards like the floorboards on some early motorcycles. Some incorporated storage lockers: there was a type known as "Sagito" which was popular in Britain around 1930. Later, there were aerofoil-profile running boards. The extreme end was probably the style favoured by French coachbuilders Million Guiet, which incorporated storage lockers and were almost as if formed by cutting the upper parts of a pontoon body away.
    winduptoy and ClarkH like this.
  10. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,855

    A Boner

    The final step for a car builder when they don’t know when to stop! (building)
    bchctybob, X38 and High test 63 like this.
  11. Elcohaulic
    Joined: Dec 27, 2017
    Posts: 1,694


    Curb feelers were mandatory in Pittsburgh back in the old times. The curbs were usually 8" to 12" and had a big heavy piece of steel right on the corner to protect the sidewalk.. Those old curbs would tear the shit out of your new whitewall tires.

    Northside 1966.jpg northside 1964.jpg Squrill hill 1959.jpg
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2020
  12. On the subject of unattractive add-ons (but slightly off-topic of step plates), I'm semi-considering these fender guides. I don't have a coliseum to park in, like some of you guys, just a garage. Also, in Texas, we don't have basements so overflow from the house craps up the garage. For me, pulling in the garage is a demonstration of the physical law that two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time. My problem is, I can't see my fender from the driver's seat because of the mass of the hood. Garage space is at a premium and I need every inch I can get.
    I don't really need a pair, and I don't need it to light up. I just need the Flash Gordon blimp when I pull in. (I'm also playing with the idea of an unobtrusive 'socket' on the fender. so just before I pull into the garage, I can jump out of the driver's seat and run around the front to temporarily stick a dowel rod in the socket...... or maybe run a flag all the time?? .......or is that just as hokey as the 'blimp' ?? ) :confused:

    parkGG.jpg parkG.JPG
  13. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,822


    What does more damage the broken off "blimp" or contact with the shelf? A 2x8 foot panel of ridged foam insulation attached to the shelf would squeak as you drive into it slowly.
    joel likes this.
  14. Thanks, Bob. Today it occurred to me that one of those fisheye shoplifter mirrors, angled down, might be the solution. (Mounted on the shelf rack, not the truck. LOL)
    bchctybob, High test 63 and The37Kid like this.
  15. spanners
    Joined: Feb 24, 2009
    Posts: 1,095


    I was just about to suggest the fish-eye mirror or there are sensors available at electronic stores that beep or light up when too close.
    The Shift Wizard likes this.
  16. SDhotrod
    Joined: Oct 11, 2008
    Posts: 584


    These people, with these step plates, all sat down together and asked the question, "How can we piss off some random guy today?" They hatched an evil plan, "We'll put step plates on our hot rods, I know that Stan Back guy really hates them!"....muuuu huu huuu haaaaa! Oh the humanity!
  17. If I were asked why I put step-plates on my car answer would be...."After all it is MY car....If you want to buy it ,then you can do it your way "
    Steves46 and egads like this.
  18. Stan Back
    Joined: Mar 9, 2007
    Posts: 885

    Stan Back
    from California

    Well, it's been fun. Gotcha all thinking. Something new for me, rubbing some the wrong way. Didn't know you couldn't criticize a car (not even a non-specific one) – especially when it mimics something from a special era.

    Of course, this is from the guy who put dingle balls on his 54 Plymouth. Was this wrong?
    (Oh, please, don't hurt me.)
    wraymen and The37Kid like this.
  19. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,822


    It has been fun, but I'm one of the guys that admires the long cowl Model A Ford. Bob
  20. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 18,027

    from California

    step plates, why?

    asking a question when the answer is in the question itself seems a bit silly to me. they are there to step on.

    next question:

    steering wheel, why?

  21. Stan Back
    Joined: Mar 9, 2007
    Posts: 885

    Stan Back
    from California

    "It has been fun, but I'm one of the guys that admires the long cowl Model A Ford."

    Then you'd like the one I had for 57 years – no step plates or dingle balls . . .

    Ford Roadster.jpg
  22. spanners
    Joined: Feb 24, 2009
    Posts: 1,095


    I'd say if it's your car, do as you please and don't worry about "fitting the mold".
    Steves46 and wraymen like this.
  23. grumpy65
    Joined: Dec 19, 2017
    Posts: 929


    The new Calcaneus Step Plate, designed by leading foot and ankle surgeons, is designed to dial-in the desired correction with incremental steps of 5 mm, 7.5 mm, and 10 mm.

    • Plates create a firm buttress to prevent redisplacement of a calcaneal sliding osteotomy
    • Quick technique which requires little to no fluoroscopy for insertion
    • Patient satisfaction may be improved due to not violating the heel pad with an incision or a screw
    • Provides rigid fixation with an added dynamic slide compression slot for solid bone-to-bone contact

    You are going to have to be way more specific with your question.........................:confused::confused::confused:
  24. This thread will start the trend all over again, step away from the "Step Plates" HAHAHAHahahah!!!!.
    Happydaze likes this.
  25. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 3,115

    from illinois

    One might just as easily ask , " who in the world would drive a '54 Plymouth " ( or a '58 Edsel ?)
    John Lee Williamson likes this.
  26. I left them on my '29 just to annoy people enough to make them ask why someone has them on their car...
    same reason that I left the dummy spots on my '46 & '56...
    5.jpg 1.jpg
    Seems to have worked, too!
    Packrat likes this.
  27. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 3,766


    Those are cool! Where can I get them? I'm thinking about using six on each running board so I can scrape my boots when I get into my truck!!! LOL
    Budget36 and grumpy65 like this.
  28. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 7,942


    I haven't bough those, but I can tell you that orthopedic stainless steel plates go for incredibly stupid money (probably because your insurance :"pays" for them). Six of those plus screws would set you back on your project for quite a while.
  29. winduptoy
    Joined: Feb 19, 2013
    Posts: 2,316


    Why do they call them running boards any way? Buggy thing? A step plate is a buggy thing. Dinner plates look like a really low budget build.
  30. harpo1313
    Joined: Jan 4, 2008
    Posts: 2,105

    from wareham,ma

    IMG_20201024_184557.jpg They look good on some trucks.

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