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Features Toronto Ontario Survivor

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by hotrod36, Feb 3, 2016.

  1. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    1955 T’Bird named “Scorchy”

    The original owner of this 1955 Thunderbird was Gordon Dennis O’Hara who bought it new in 1956 when he was 18 after the Ford dealer (Kennedy Motors?) kept it as a demo for a full year. He drove this car for a year before starting modifications. The car lived and went through its transformation in Oakville, Ontario.


    At age 19, Gord bought a new 368 cubic inch Lincoln Y-block crate engine from the Ford dealer and the transformation started. The original 292 T’Bird engine was installed in a ’55 Ford that he bought off a neighbour with a blown engine.


    The T’Bird known as “Scorchy” went through its modifications between 1957 and 1961 and still wears the red lacquer paint and custom interior that was applied in the late 50’s.


    Modifications include frenched headlights, custom front bumper, flared rear wheel wells, ’55 Merc wagon taillights, nosed, decked, and the gas door removed. At the same time, the interior was completed by Tony Macri’s T.M. Custom Auto Upholstering at 365 Dupont St., Toronto, in pearl white tuck and roll with vertical pleats in the door panels and kick panels, and silver flakes on a red carpet.


    “Scorchy” was entered in the 1962 Autorama where it placed first in its class. About a year later, the car went into storage and remained out of sight for 50 years!


    The car was built by Gord O’Hara and cruised the streets with 305 hp and 415 foot pounds of torque in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s, a sleeper in its time. It is a true survivor, untouched since being built, wearing 15 coats of red lacquer by Lonsdale Garage at 335 Lonsdale Rd., Toronto, and all body work done in lead.


    I was asked to appraise the car in 2009 after Gord O’Hara passed away. That’s when I fell in love with it. Five years later, I am the proud owner of this amazing documented piece of Ontario history. And if all that doesn’t blow your mind, this 1955 Ford T’Bird has 6,100 original miles.”


    “Scorchy” will be on display at the Motorama Custom Car & Motorsport Expo at the International Centre in Toronto, March 11-13, 2016 (416-962-7223). I would love to hear from anyone who remembers “Scorchy” and especially from anyone who has photos of this car at the 1962 Autorama. You can email me at jwhkustoms@hotmail.com or call me 905 706 5876


    Jamie
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 20,062

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    She's a beauty...great history lesson & thanks for sharing.
     
  3. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 11,103

    Blue One
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Alberta

    Really nice T Bird, hopefully you will get her out and put some serious miles on it and really enjoy it.
    6,100 miles is a nice bragging point, but it means that the car was never really used and enjoyed for what it is.
     
  4. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I was lucky enough to drive it already and have had some enjoyment. Unfortunately way too much slat on the roads to drive it now. To be honest, having only 6100 miles on it, makes the overall condition amazing. I can;t believe how well it has been preserved over the years. The interior is flawless still.
     

  5. ynottayblock
    Joined: Dec 23, 2005
    Posts: 1,954

    ynottayblock
    Member

    Thats gorgeous...nice find!
     
  6. damit....nice...enjoy !
     
  7. Jamie-You lucky Dawg! Good find-real nice custom-cool local history
     
  8. guy1unico
    Joined: Aug 30, 2006
    Posts: 971

    guy1unico
    Member

    I love that 55 bird...chrome reversed rims!
     
  9. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 16,990

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    That is about as perfect as a Tbird can get! Even better that it was done all those years ago. A real treasure you've found.
     
  10. young'n'poor
    Joined: Jan 26, 2006
    Posts: 1,280

    young'n'poor
    Member
    from Anoka. MN

    That car is too cool! The big Lincoln engine, the chrome reverse steelies, the really mild bodywork. The thing is a great example of a street car from the early 60's. I hope you blast all over in it this summer
     
  11. 19Fordy
    Joined: May 17, 2003
    Posts: 7,224

    19Fordy
    Member

    Those taillights are priceless. What a beautiful car.
    It's great to "save" old customs.
     
  12. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I am a lucky dawg. See you at Motorama in March
     
  13. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I actually added the chrome reverse rims. The car had 670 x 15 bias plys with 55 Meteor hubcaps when I got it.
     
  14. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    Thanks, greatly appreciated
     
  15. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I plan on laying down a few rubber patches, hopefully the Radar slicks aren't too sticky lol.
     
  16. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I'm glad I had the opportunity to save it also. Other than pertronics, and the hydraulic brakes being replaced. She is in as found mechanical condition. The only cosmetic change was the wheels and tires. Kind of hard driving around on 50 year old bias plys.
     
  17. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,974

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    That is probably the best-looking early Tbird I've ever seen. Love the '55s with no fender vents and no portholes in the top. That is absolutely gorgeous. You should take it to the Lone Star Roundup. ;) :D
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  18. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,024

    seb fontana
    Member
    from ct

    Smooth Bird, very nicely done must have been stored in the living room!..Be careful with the slicks though as the rear axle would be a weak point but may never be an issue..
     
  19. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I would love to, but wouldn't be able to take the time off work. Maybe convince my dad to tow it down for the weekend.
     
  20. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    Surprisingly enough it was stored in a non heated garage all these years. I figure it had to be heated, but just going with what I was told. Thanks
     
  21. Offset
    Joined: Nov 9, 2010
    Posts: 1,700

    Offset
    Member
    from Canada

    I lived in that end of town but do not recall the car. That said it is beautiful and I hope you get to add another 6100 miles. Very nice.
     
  22. Wow.....what a beautiful T-Bird.....perfect mild Kustom
     
  23. Chrisbcritter
    Joined: Sep 11, 2011
    Posts: 1,902

    Chrisbcritter
    Member

    Very tasteful mild custom - shows you don't need to do much to a T-bird to make it stand out!
    How does the Lincoln engine affect the handling? Is it a lot heavier than the 292? I haven't seen many early customs with Lincoln powerplants.
     
  24. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    Thanks,
     
  25. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    It drives nice to me, I'm not to sure how well it would do on a course but on the street I don't notice any difference
     
  26. hotrod36
    Joined: Aug 31, 2006
    Posts: 237

    hotrod36
    Member

    I'll called a few people to try and track info down on it but know one recalls the car. I'll keep trying
     
  27. PKap
    Joined: Jan 5, 2011
    Posts: 593

    PKap
    Member
    from Alberta

    That is amazing. Nice for us to appreciate such a well preserved, well done custom. Also profoundly sad that the original owner, for whatever reason didn't drive this car and enjoy the power he added, and the custom touches he did. I wonder if people told him that five grand was way too much to have in a car and it was "too valuable to drive"?
     
  28. Thanks for sharing
     
  29. Offset
    Joined: Nov 9, 2010
    Posts: 1,700

    Offset
    Member
    from Canada

    Jamie have you tried to contact anyone at the Roadmates in Mississauga? The other possibility is Bob McJanet from Performance Improvements in Etobicoke, he has a great memory.
     

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