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Features "The DUKE" - 1927 Ford T.R.O.G. Roadster

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by HEMI32, Oct 6, 2019.

  1. "The Duke" Build Pics - September 2016:

    frame mockup

    2016-09-25 (Cindy 1).jpg
    2016-09-25 (Cindy 2).jpg
    Cindy working on the front axle

    2016-09-25 (Tom & Justin).jpg
    Tom & Justin hard at work

    All images from the Walsh family archives
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2019
  2. "The Duke" Build Pics - October 2016:

    2016-10-21 (2).jpg
    2016-10-21 (1).jpg
    2016-10-21 (3).jpg

    All images from the Walsh family archives
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
  3. "The Duke" Build Pics - November 2016:

    2016-11-10 (1).jpg
    2016-11-10 (2).jpg
    2016-11-10 (3).jpg
    2016-11-10 (4).jpg
    2016-11-10 (5).jpg

    All images from the Walsh family archives
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
    Tim, chriseakin, loudbang and 5 others like this.
  4. "The Duke" Build Pics - June 2017:

    2017-06-27 (1).jpg
    2017-06-27 (2).jpg
    2017-06-27 (3).jpg
    2017-06-27 (4).jpg
    2017-06-27 (5).jpg
    2017-06-27 (6).jpg
    2017-06-27 (7).jpg
    2017-06-27 (8).jpg
    2017-06-27 (9).jpg
    2017-06-27 (10).jpg
    2017-06-27 (11).jpg

    All images from the Walsh family archives
  5. "The Duke" Build Pics - October 2017 - Long hair & creepers don't mix :):

    2017-10-30 (Cindy's hair caught in creeper wheels).jpg

    Image from the Walsh family archives
  6. CTaulbert
    Joined: Apr 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,253

    from Detroit

    Great car - thanks for the pics Todd!
    kidcampbell71 and HEMI32 like this.
  7. "The Duke" Build Pics - January 2018 - Grandson Rocky helps out:

    2018-01-02 (1).jpg
    2018-01-02 (2).jpg

    Images from the Walsh family archives
  8. "The Duke" Build Pics - March 2018 :

    2018-03-01 (1).jpg
    2018-03-01 (2).jpg

    Images from the Walsh family archives
  9. "The Duke" Build Pics - August 2018 :

    2018-08-01 (1).JPG
    2018-08-01 (2).JPG
    2018-08-01 (3).JPG
    2018-08-01 (4).JPG
    2018-08-01 (5).JPG

    Images from the Walsh family archives
  10. "The Duke" Build Pics - September 2018 :

    2018-09-03 (1).jpg
    2018-09-03 (2).jpg
    2018-09-03 (3).jpg

    Images from the Walsh family archives
    chriseakin, loudbang, clem and 3 others like this.
  11. tjm73
    Joined: Feb 17, 2006
    Posts: 3,402


    Wow. At a lose for words on the quality of this build.
    HEMI32 and kidcampbell71 like this.
  12. Anyone have any more info on the 314 car? Miller overhead? Cheers.
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  13. v8flat44
    Joined: Nov 13, 2017
    Posts: 859


    Well that's just Dukeskusting......because it ain't in my garage.
    Actually it is Fanduketastic. A W E S O M E !!! Thanks 4 the pics !!!!!
    chryslerfan55 and HEMI32 like this.
  14. Too much to consume in one sitting; going to take a week or a month. BTT
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  15. I notice on the table of quick change parts it appears you have engineered a full floating hub to carry the rear end load and not become detached in the event of a broken axle. Am I seeing things or just being an optimist as I look at the rear hubs on the table. Do you use a trimmed down outer half for its taper to attach the axle to what looks like full floating hubs that are secured by a thick snap ring at the end of the housing?
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  16. Cyclone Kevin
    Joined: Apr 15, 2002
    Posts: 4,080

    Cyclone Kevin
    Alliance Vendor

    Those are Cook’s Machine Works (CYCLONE) safety hubs, Ends of housing requires machine work and thread tapping. We still have the castings but Cook’s would have to do the machining. The bearings are available at most bearing houses. Many people have copied these hubs, I’ve seen several. Ours have our name on them. 1AA549D8-3DD4-478F-9509-1E185EC7236B.jpeg 704BB5C2-6270-4C04-B430-CB36D9113916.jpeg 7327E055-22C4-45BD-BEC3-DD216997B19A.jpeg E298AD28-18FB-414F-868B-08F511331177.jpeg
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
  17. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,886


    Outrageous. What an incredible car!
    chryslerfan55 and HEMI32 like this.
  18. So ... the HOT ROD Network (digital) article has hit the (print) newsstands:

    STREET RODDER - January 2020 - Cover.jpg
    Cover of the January 2020 STREET RODDER
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2019
  19. jimgoetz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2013
    Posts: 423


    Owning a 27 on Deuce rails makes me partial to them but this car maybe the finest ever built. It's no stretch to say this is an instant classic.
    loudbang and HEMI32 like this.
  20. Billy_Bottle_Caps
    Joined: Oct 16, 2007
    Posts: 252


    Wow, just wow!!!
    loudbang likes this.
  21. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,190


    What a fantastic build!
    loudbang likes this.
  22. I was unable to attend the TROG Santa Barbara Drags in March, so the first time I got to see "The DUKE" in person was in August at the Goodguys West Coast Nationals in Pleasanton.

    I took several iPhone snapshots of the car while on display inside the "Racecar Building" (on Friday & Saturday) and while it was outside (on Sunday), but none of those images do the car justice.

    That said, here's a few pics I shot on Sunday:

    The Duke @ 2109 Goodguys WCN - by Todd Olson (1).JPG
    The Duke @ 2109 Goodguys WCN - by Todd Olson (2).JPG
    The Duke @ 2109 Goodguys WCN - by Todd Olson (3).JPG

    Rocky Walsh sitting in The Duke @ 2109 Goodguys WCN - by Todd Olson.JPG
    Rocky Walsh sitting in "his" Hot Rod

    The Walsh family in The Duke @ 2109 Goodguys WCN Awards Ceremony - by Todd Olson.JPG
    The Walsh family (less daughter Ryan* away at college) accepting the "GAZETTE PICK"

    * NOTE: Ryan Walsh is also no stranger to Hot Rodding ... A few years back, she & her grandpa Tom built her bitchin' '40 Pickup (powered by a Baby HEMI) ... Here it is the first (& maybe the last?) time she drove it to high school:

    Ryan Walsh Baby HEMI-powered '40 Ford PU @ San Ramon Valley HS.jpg
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019
  23. As mentioned above, "The DUKE" was awarded the "GAZETTE PICK" at the 33rd Annual GOODGUYs West Coast Nationals.

    As such, the car will be featured in an upcoming issue of the GOODGUYS GAZETTE (digital & print) magazine.

    I'll be sure to post that article here when it is released ... but until then, here's a couple shots taken at Pleasanton by the Gazette / FuelCurve staff:

  24. Danbeverage55chevy
    Joined: Oct 26, 2019
    Posts: 26

    from Concord

    Awesome build. I didn’t realize we had such awesome clubs locally. I’m in concord

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    HEMI32 and loudbang like this.
  25. Such a nicely built and well engineered car! Hats off to all involved in the family build!

    loudbang and HEMI32 like this.
  26. Got to see it at the TROG in Santa Barbara this year. It is an amazing build. Fit and finish is excellent. Almost too well done for TROG.
    loudbang and HEMI32 like this.
  27. Here's the fuelcurve_header.jpg (i.e., digital media) version feature article about "The Duke":

    December 4, 2019 - Written by Damon @Nomad Lee with photography by John @NotStockPhoto Jackson (& Damon Lee)

    It’s said that those who cannot remember history are doomed to repeat it, but what about those pieces of history we want to repeat? When it comes to traditional-style hot rods, many of us have a certain sliver of history we’d like to revisit – or at least imitate. As it turns out, that’s not always easy, either. We’ve all seen plenty of “traditional-style” hot rods and customs that miss the mark, mixing and matching the wrong pieces or incorporating obvious contemporary elements that throw off the vintage vibe. That’s certainly not the case with this incredible 27 T roadster, built by the Walsh family – father Tom, his son Justin and daughter-in-law Cindy. It’s easy to see that this trad T incorporates all the right ingredients to capture the classic early-’50s era of hot rodding.


    For Tom, getting the history right on this roadster was partially a matter of living that history. He’s been into cars since the ’50s and has seemingly seen or done it all – street-based hot rods, drag cars, Bonneville racers, AMBR contenders, and more. Along with Gary “Goodguy” Meadors and Bill Burnham, Tom was a founding member of the influential Danville Dukes car club and has been a member of the Nor-Cal Early Iron and Bay-Area Roadsters clubs. Tom’s time with the Danville Dukes even inspired the roadster’s nickname – The Duke. Adding to their list of credentials, Tom and Justin are also members of the SCTA’s prestigious 200mph Club.


    The Walshes collected parts for this build for the better part of 15 years, gathering an original steel ’27 T roadster body, a ’47 Flathead V8, Halibrand quick-change rearend, and many more desirable pieces. The build eventually started to come together in Tom’s garage, where modified ’32 Ford frame rails created the foundation for a custom chassis that incorporated a spring-behind drilled front axle, split wishbones, lever shocks, and ’40 Ford brakes. The Halibrand quick-change center was incorporated into a ’40 Ford rear axle assembly, while 16-inch ’35 Ford wires with 5.00 and 8.90 Firestone Deluxe Champion bias-ply tires got things up and rolling.


    The 296c.i. Flathead was built by the late Ron Sterbenk, who ported and relieved the block before topping it with Sharp aluminum heads. A trio of Stromberg 97 carbs on an aluminum intake was employed for fuel delivery, with a Vertex magneto lighting the spark. The coated headers and straight stainless exhaust result in an authoritative bark when this Flattie fires to life – a definite blast from the past! A ’39 Ford transmission keeps the gear selection as traditional as the rest of the build.


    Beyond the tweaks needed to fit it on the custom frame, the core of the roadster body remains essentially stock. Jim Hendricks and Guy Ruchonnet made the necessary metal repairs, massaged the metal straight, and built a full belly pan, including a tidy louvered rear pan with outlets for the exhaust pipes. Marcos Garcia at Lucky 7 Customs got the nod to apply the beautiful British Racing Green finish. It’s the details that really help to complete the theme on this roadster, including era-correct B-L-C headlights, leather hold-down straps for the hood top, teardrop-shaped covers for the wishbone mounts, chopped windshield posts, a small tubular rear bumper, and ’37 Ford taillights.


    Speaking of details, the two-place cockpit is full of ’em. They begin at the bottom, where race-influenced floor panels were built from sheet aluminum with dimple-die lightening holes. The dash is filled with an array of basic Stewart Warner gauges. The reversed Model T steering wheel has a cloth-wrapped rim, while the shifter handle on the exposed ’39 Ford transmission is adorned with a Ford medallion from the 1933 World’s Fair. Sid @Hotrodstitcher Chavers gets credit for the minimal upholstery work, which consists of brown leather on the door, side, and rear panels, plus tastefully stitched cushions on the aluminum aircraft-style bucket seats.


    As the ’27 T roadster was taking shape, the Walsh family learned of the 2019 Santa Barbara Drags being put on by The Race of Gentlemen. The event’s goal was to recreate the midcentury street-race scene with traditional-style hot rods built using pre-’53 running gear. It was a perfect place for the roadster to debut and offered a target deadline for getting the build completed. The family not only got the ’27 T roadster done in time, they had a lot of fun racing it on the blocked-off streets of Santa Barbara, within sight of the Pacific Ocean. It was like taking a step back into history, which is exactly how Tom, Justin, and Cindy feel whenever they climb into the cockpit of this lean, green time machine.

    Last edited: May 18, 2021
  28. ... and here's the Goodguys Goodtimes Gazette - January 2020 - Cover Masthead.jpg (i.e., print media) feature article about "The Duke":

    Goodguys Goodtimes Gazette - January 2020 - pages 114 &115.jpg
    Goodguys Goodtimes Gazette - January 2020 - page 116.jpg
  29. Thanks for sharing!
    Amazing built :cool:
    loudbang and HEMI32 like this.
  30. Malcolm
    Joined: Feb 9, 2006
    Posts: 7,759

    from Nebraska

    Wow, what an awesome little T roadster. Thanks for posting all of the photos and info, Todd!
    loudbang and HEMI32 like this.

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