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Features The Ugliest Kustoms of the 50s

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by Jive-Bomber, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. i actually like this thing....what is it exactly?
  2. Dreddybear
    Joined: Mar 31, 2007
    Posts: 5,980


    58 Packard
  3. jroberts
    Joined: Oct 14, 2008
    Posts: 1,628


    I really admire some of the "customs" of the 1950's but by the latter part of the decade they had become so silly looking that it almost ruined my interest in "customs." As a kid they just didn't look real enough at times to be something I'd ever be interested in. For me cars, any cars, should be meant to be driven. So many of these customs of that period didn't look to be driven that I went in other automotive directions. Oh, and I sort of like the Packard. The pod like headlights aren't the most visually pleasing, but the those dual rear fins are quite unique and very cool. In my opinion at any rate.
  4. BlackJackPG
    Joined: Mar 23, 2012
    Posts: 156

    from Indiana!

    Dang, those are ugly. That would suck pretty bad to put as many hours as those guys in on those cars and come out with something like that... The craftsmanship is pretty good, it just doesn't work... Once you get into the 70's, 80's and especially the 90's just about every car made was as bad, if not worse, than those!

  5. froghawk
    Joined: May 9, 2008
    Posts: 852


    Well said, Highlander.
  6. propwash
    Joined: Jul 25, 2005
    Posts: 3,858

    from Las Vegas

    a reminder regarding that 58 Packard - those (and Studebaker's) grille openings were used on a lot of customs as they provided a basis for a wide mouth that could be filled (festooned?) with whatever adornment the builder found pleasing - vette teeth, drawer pulls, tubes, etc.
  7. Ugly is the new beautiful just ask my wife! She says this about me all the time!
  8. teejay99
    Joined: Sep 26, 2009
    Posts: 356


    Probably a few cases of beer involved with that shoebox . Butt-Fugly .

  9. Thats funny id rather have something different then look like everyone else!
  10. 55chevy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 280


    I first saw this 55 Chevy for sale years ago (20+) in northeast Indiana, it was white with red interior, ran across pics of it a couple years back, the green makes it look worse IMHO. Sort of an El Morocco wannabe, in fact, change the grille and most people would think it is.

    Attached Files:

  11. I love posts like this because it reminds us that the past is not as perfect as we tend to think/remember. Maybe it's the eye searing trauma from over stimulatinon that can cause the memory lapse..... I don't know, but these cars do offer a lesson.
  12. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,357

    Rusty O'Toole

    Jeez weren't things bad enough without starting any contests?

    However, now that this can of ugly worms has been opened.....

    My nomination for the worst custom of all time, goes to the previously mentioned Maratta Mercury.

    I concede that the Bailon 58 Chev and the Modern Grecian could give it a photo finish in the ugly stakes.

    But what it makes it such a standout is this. HE STARTED WITH A 1940 MERCURY 4 DOOR CONVERTIBLE.

    I submit that no other custom in history, covered so much ground from one of the rarest best looking cars made, to something that would make a Tazmanian Devil eat its young.

    The Maratta Merc:

    By this standard the Modern Grecian isn't even in the running, considering that it started as a 48 Studebaker 4 door sedan, and after being completely customized by the Barris Brothers, twice, is barely 100% uglier than when it started.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 21, 2013
  13. nochop
    Joined: Nov 13, 2005
    Posts: 1,837

    from norcal

    That Beach Boy Lil Deuce Coupe is butt f'n nasty IMO
    pecker head likes this.
  14. Dreddybear
    Joined: Mar 31, 2007
    Posts: 5,980


    I hope you mean in a good way. But I know you don't. Bummer.

  15. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    from BC

    ROFL! Yea, that one has a permanent home in the hall of shame...JEEZ!
  16. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    from BC

    EIIIIIEEE!!! Jeez, thats it, I'm outta here. this is more than I can handle!
  17. Rich Wright
    Joined: Jan 9, 2008
    Posts: 3,922

    Rich Wright

    Started out as a'39 merc 4-door Convertable...

    Yeah... all those '50s cars are ugly, but that's by todays standard. Back then they were pretty hot, and in many cases still are.

    Of course there were dogs then just as there are dogs now. the Grecian, The frank Marratta monstrosity, and, of course, Barris's golden Sahara '55 Chevy.
  18. Larry W
    Joined: Oct 12, 2009
    Posts: 731

    Larry W
    from kansas

    somebody should be beat for doing that.
  19. oldpl8s
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,399


    Those packard from ends remind me of a catfish

  20. Dreddybear
    Joined: Mar 31, 2007
    Posts: 5,980


    The Golden Sahara was a 53 Lincoln.

    This thread bums me out. No love for customs here.

    To stay positive- If there are any of you out there like me, Here is something to brighten your day. I especially love when they get to the part about the sonic braking.

    VictorPaul likes this.
  21. Post Apocalyptic Kustoms
    Joined: Oct 21, 2012
    Posts: 480

    Post Apocalyptic Kustoms
    from Outside

    An ugly Kustom is way cooler than a beautiful hybrid rice burner any day of the week.
  22. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,896

    from DFW USA

    Yeah, and Barris nearly died in it. You'd think he would have held on to that one.
    Nah man, you and me got this. I even have love for that Packard. And some for Edsels. :D

    *two chest bumps, then raises fist*

    Say what you want about OEM and custom cars from the '50s, but at least they were interesting. I'll take that any day over the ubiquitous silver boxes of today.
  23. There were at least three Besasie cars built...One was regular fixture at Milwaukees lakefront during the Summers. I worked for Ray Jr, at Excaliber Automobiles in the early '70's, and learned of some very cool cars he and his Dad (Raymond Sr.) built. Truly experimental and cutting edge to be sure. This is a slippery slope because there are a lot of ugly cars built both then and now, but it's truly odd to me that a guy like Bill Hines can be both revered and not laughed at for the Bats....Our Favorites were all pretty much guilty of occasional ugly and excess, but in the long run, we have all enjoyed something from their efforts.....Centurion9
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  24. [​IMG]
    That guy in the picture looks like Vladimir Putin. Maybe its a Russian custom. :D
    luima98, Sauli and D.Lee like this.
  25. Here's more Bill Hines....Funny thing is...when I was a young guy, I saw the Original Pearl White version of this car at the Milwaukee Autorama in 1961 and was totally blown away by it!!! The Red version was the intermediate car and here it is again in White. Back then, I thought it was, it's ugly, but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate it....:)


  26. hugh m
    Joined: Jul 18, 2007
    Posts: 2,142

    hugh m
    from ct.

    Found this photo of possibly the ugliest cutdown ever, also attributed to Mr. Marratta. Think it's from Waterford, CT, very early fifties. Kind of funny, because he had a good reputation as a builder, and promoter...

    Attached Files:

  27. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,357

    Rusty O'Toole

    I think we have a new champion. Bill Hines, the winner!

    I still think Frank Maratta should be dipped in dog shit for what he did to that Mercury convertible.
  28. I don't really think the majority of car guys understand what kustom is anymore. If you think taking a '54 Chevy and chopping it and air bagging it is building a kustom you don't really have a clue about kustoms. Atleast the original builders of these set out to do something different and stand out from the crowd. Seems like many are missing the intention of these cars. They never intended to be like everything else they intended to get show points, stand out, and be different. I honestly wish we could go back to how kustoms were built. Then I wouldn't have to see another thread on a Shoebox getting a 305 and air bags and calling it a kustom.
    Movinman likes this.
  29. BLAKE
    Joined: Aug 10, 2002
    Posts: 2,773


    I guess the only way to know where 'the line' is is to cross it.

    Is this actually better than the '55 T-Bird it used to be...?

  30. You get it Mitchell.....most on here DO NOT! but thats okay I stopped trying to wave the Kustom Flag on here a few years ago! The HAMB is no place for Kustoms! pretty sad!
    Chris Stapley likes this.

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