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Hot Rods TRJ 78, A roadster to remember, Back story of the build.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by irishpol, Jul 15, 2018.

  1. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    Several people have asked me to post a thread on my involvement with the build of the'333' car.
    I was exited when Darren asked me to build this great old drag roadster, his energy and boyish enthusiasm were addictive.
    It took me 14 months get it done, which is a little longer than I would have liked. One of these days I'll get an assistant and stop working alone.
    The brief was to restore the car exactly to it's former glory.
    When the frame arrived it was showing years of misuse and poor modifications, it took 70+ hours to restore the frame back to the way it was.
    The front half of the roll cage was missing and had to be recreated using old photos as reference. The original seat mount was made from 4x2 lumber and was replaced with steel.
    The front crossmember was missing, as were the frame horns. I was able to determine the angle and location of the cross member because the flame cut ends were still inside the frame rails.
    The next task was to determine the location and shape of the rear axle mounts. The axle was solid mounted to the end of the frame rails at a point where the main roll bar hoop intersected the top of the frame.
    After finishing the axle mounts I moved on to correcting the push bar and battery mount to the rear of the roll bar.
    When I stripped the frame I able to find evidence of the location of all the other missing mounts and brackets.
    The next big job was to build the engine and transmission mounts, having done that I was able to shorten the toque tube and drive shaft to fit. The remaining things on the frame followed including mounts for steering, pedals, radiator shell, brake master cylinder and moon fuel tank.
    The body was also in need of extensive restoration. After removing a large amount of plywood, fiberglass and zinc roof flashing I set about restoring the bottom 8+ inches of the entire body.
    It would have been easy to use Brookville panels but Darren agreed with me that as much original ford body panels should be used.
    After I finished restoring the body I set about the modifications of the cowl top and the capping of the windshield mounts. Next I built the deck lid from scratch.
    Having assembled the body he next challenge was the firewall which Darren felt should be steel for safety reasons (having been a race car fire myself I willingly agreed) The floor was also built of steel for the same reason.
    After body working and several rounds block sanding the car left me to for paint... or so I thought?
    The only thing that kicked my ass was trying to build headers without making holes in the cowl sides. I must say I'm glad to see that Darren changed his mind and had headers built that go through cowl sides. Who ever built the new headers did a great job and has my respect. Building headers is like trying to solve a Chinese puzzle!
    My love has always been restoring vintage hot rods & race cars with history, so this was real memorable experience.
    Thank you Darren for letting me do this thing for you.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    I forgot to mention that I scaled up the graphics.
     
  3. Merak
    Joined: Jul 16, 2018
    Posts: 3

    Merak

    I saw this article and followed this build as Paul lives near by and I cannot believe that he did not get way more credit for the work done. Pretty damn unfair! Not right when someone takes credit for work others have done.
     
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  4. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    Merak,
    It happens more times than you would think!

     
  5. GordonC
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,661

    GordonC
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  6. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    Thank you.
     
  7. Malcolm
    Joined: Feb 9, 2006
    Posts: 7,498

    Malcolm
    Member
    from Nebraska

    Looks like you put a lot of nice work into that old roadster. Well done! I haven't seen the article on the car yet, but it seems you had it in primer and now it's bare metal?
     
  8. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    I'm not sure why Darren decided to run it in bare metal?
     
  9. manyolcars
    Joined: Mar 30, 2001
    Posts: 8,023

    manyolcars

    How is a 'back story' any different from any other story?
     
  10. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    You got me... I was trying to sound hip... I should know better at my age!
     
  11. Merak
    Joined: Jul 16, 2018
    Posts: 3

    Merak

    Did you make the shifter? Nice work if you did.
     
  12. TRJ
    Joined: Oct 4, 2003
    Posts: 312

    TRJ
    Alliance Vendor

    Very rarely do we encounter one of these cars that doesn’t have some kind of history. With this history comes gray area. As you may know, Doc Eiland’s “333” roadster was built and rebuilt a number of times in the past half century. We pride ourselves on our research and, whenever we encounter any sort of discrepancy, we work to get to the bottom of things. Just like every other Rodder’s Journal article, we do everything in our power to give credit where credit is due. Both Paul Wright and Pat Lesiak were mentioned multiple times in the story as well as the tech panel. Often times it’s difficult to determine the extent of work done by any one person—and we too noticed the car went from primer back to baremetal.

    We are proud to have the car in issue #78 of the magazine and would like to thank Darren for bringing the 333 back to life. John Jackson captured it at sunset in Central Texas, and we were pleased to see how it turned out. Congratulations to all those who have been involved with this very special Model A in the past 50+ years. We can’t wait to see it finished!

    Steve Coonan & Joey Ukrop
     
    kidcampbell71 and BELLM like this.
  13. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    Yes I did all the restoration and recreation of all the controls.
     
  14. Merak
    Joined: Jul 16, 2018
    Posts: 3

    Merak

    Clearly it is a real shame that you did not contact Paul and interview him as he did much of the work - I saw the car as it progressed. I am not sure as to why he was sidelined with the following "Metal work by owner & Pat Lesiak, liberty hill, Texas, with assistance from Paul Wright, Pflugerville, Texas." Paul was not assisted by anybody - he did the metalwork!
     
  15. KrazyKate
    Joined: Nov 11, 2007
    Posts: 13

    KrazyKate
    Member
    from Austin, TX

    Wow! what a cop out!!
    How about you admit your mistake & apologize to Paul!!
    He's been building hot rod for over 40 years and is giving of his time to all comers,
    He does' not deserve to be treated in this shameful way!!
     
  16. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    It would have been nice if they had taken the time to talk to me.
     
  17. irishpol
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 795

    irishpol
    Member
    from Texas

    PLEASE, lets keep this thread about the car.
     
  18. BELLM
    Joined: Nov 16, 2002
    Posts: 2,588

    BELLM
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I have the Chevy engine that ran in this car when it came to Texas in the '60s. I let Darren have several original parts that were on the car originally after determining he was really going to recreate the car. I almost bought the car before Darren's dad. I have followed the build thru every stage. There is a reason that the car is now in bare metal.
     

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