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History What Ever Happened to..........?

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by OG lil E, Apr 19, 2016.

  1. Thanks for taking the time to post this, Jim! Those old KKOA Leadsled'ers and Kemp Gazettes were so kool. They had a small town newspaper feel to them and it was as if the KKOA members all knew each other. The little notes and articles printed were like a note to a friend, neighbor or buddy.
    Unfortunately all club and association newsletters have lost that feel as the car hobby has become huge. That and the introduction of smart phones and social media has made it feel like the charming small town feel of customs is long gone..........E
    drdave, kidcampbell71, Sancho and 5 others like this.
  2. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,754

    from red oak

    Who has smart phones and social Media. I only have the HAMB. And a flip phone that is never on.
  3. Jim, you are a rare exception to the rule. Most people are "overly connected"..........E
  4. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 21,901

    Staff Member

    I also have no FB or any other social media other than the Hamb. I don't even have a flip phone, I have no cellphone at all. I had one and turned it off 5 years ago. One of the best decisions I have ever made....
    drdave, Hank37, OG lil E and 5 others like this.
  5. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,754

    from red oak

    My flip phone is a trac phone. The only time it`s on is when I`m out of town. But nobody has my number. Well, hardly anybody. I`m in the local phone book. If I don`t answer. Leave a message. Never sent a text in my life. And no E mail. I use my wife`s. I bet Sancho can find me. And tell me things I don`t even know about myself !
  6. What Ever Happened To..........? number 280.

    1949 Ford "Mild but Wild"
    Owner: Larry Dyke
    New Lebanon, Ohio

    This week's custom is one that we've touched on a handful of times here on the HAMB. I believe it was discussed over on the "Kustom Blues" thread, as well as here on the "What Ever Happened To..........?" thread, as well as a few other kustom themed threads. The information on the car is scattered all over the message board, so I thought it was time to gather up all the information that has been posted on it and put it in this thread. What better place to have it than right here, where old KKOA customs are discussed more than just about anywhere in the world? I thought that since this was a very influential custom in it's day that it deserved to be added to our growing W.E.H.T. list.
    The first time I saw the car was on the 1985 Leadsled Spectacular video that Rowdie shot in Springfield, Ohio. This seemed fitting as Mr. Dyke was from New Lebanon, Ohio which is less than 40 miles from Springfield. It only made sense for Larry to drag his sled to the show being that close. But, before we touch on that, I'm getting a little ahead of myself. The first record I found of the car at any KKOA show was at the 1983 Leadsled Spectacular which was also in Springfield. I watched my copy of the '83 show and I never did see Larry's car on it, but we know it was there as there was some coverage of the car in the KKOA's newsletter, the Leadsled'er. Larry's car was pictured prominently on the cover of the Volume 3 number 5 issue from late 1983.

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford a KKOA Lsldr cover V3N5 JSC.jpg

    Not only was Larry's car on the cover, but there was a nice picture of his interior in the same issue on page 27. Larry won "Koolest Interior" at the Spectacular that year.
    By the way, these first two scans tonight are courtesy of Jim Stanley (@stanlow69). Thanks Jim!

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford c KKOA Lsldr V3N5 1983 p27 83LSS Best Int JSC.jpg

    The next information I found on Larry's '49 was in the January 1984 issue of Classic and Custom Magazine in their coverage of the '83 Leadsled Spectacular. On page 33 there is a great color shot of the sled with an equally awesome custom F100 in the background.

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford d Classic n Custom Jan 84 p33 83LSS.jpg

    Classic and Custom must have really liked Larry's sled as they also got another great shot of Larry posing next to the car showing off his winning hardware for "Koolest Interior". Gotta love those lowering block trophies--koolest style awards EVER! Those of you with sharp eyes will notice the subtle pinstriping on the leading edge of the cruiser skirt. Nice touch!

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford b Classic n Custom Jan84 p36.jpg

    Moving on to the 1985 Leadsled, Rowdie got some great video of Larry cruising into the fairgrounds on the opening day of the event. I wish this picture was clearer--the '49 was just too nice for still photos.

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford e KLL 85LSS.JPG

    After the '85 Spectacular, I wasn't able to find any more video footage of the car at a KKOA event that I have videos and DVDs for. It became very illusive.
    Our own @KustomLincolnLady Deb Butler took a picture of the car that I found over on Rikster's site in the Kustom Lincoln Lady photo collection. I have no idea where the shot was taken. Maybe Deb will chime in and give us the details.
    In the photo you will notice some changes that indicate that either the car had some damage to the front end or an accident or just possibly an ownership change. The first thing I noticed is that the "Mild but Wild" letting on the lower front fenders is gone, as well as all the carefully placed pinstriping. Also, the great Cal Custom accessory grill was no longer chrome, but had been painted the body color of the car. After studying the photos of this car for quite sometime, I'm almost thinking the car had a complete repaint as Deb's picture looked to be a darker blue than the older shots. Of course this could be because of camera picture quality, old film or a number of other factors. This was the last car show photo I've come across.
    Fast forward to May of 2019. One evening I was surfing around Ebay when I came across a really cool chopped Ford shoebox for sale. When I saw the car it just had a familiarity to it so I started digging. Sure enough, after some quick detective work, I realized that this was the Larry Dyke '49. Sadly the car had been through a flood and was in need of a ton of work. The main thing that showed me this was Larry's car was the unique feature of a frenched antenna in each door. Here is a link to the post I made the evening I found the car. It's pretty much the same content as I'm posting here tonight, but there were some great comments from some of the custom family that frequents here on the W.E.H.T. thread.

    Like a dummy I only saved two pictures from the auction. I wish I had saved the shots of the interior, trunk and the engine compartment. It was definitely a project not for the faint of heart and would be a huge job to bring it back, but it would have definitely been worth it. Here are the only two shots I saved:

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford g Ebay.jpg

    Larry Dyke 49 Ford h Ebay.jpg

    If memory serves, the car never sold on Ebay, and it was never listed again. Did someone buy the ol' girl and try to resurrect this iconic sled? As of my writing of this, I haven't seen it reappear, but I'm still hoping that Larry's "Mild but Wild" will cruise once again!
    I apologize for this week's post being kind of a re-run, but this car deserves to be here and remembered for the great custom history it had. I promise the next post in two weeks will be new content that most of you haven't seen for a long time--or ever!
    I hope everyone had a nice Halloween. Here at home we had a good number of Trick or Treaters, but the numbers were way down from years past (of course except for 2020--I never count that because it was just a really weird time last year). I guess people are still a little nervous with what's going on in the world. I mentioned two weeks ago that our record for little ghosts and goblins was 383 back in 2016. This year was nowhere near that many with 139. Oh well, at least some kids were out having fun like old times. I hope you had fun too!
    Now we point the wheel towards Thanksgiving. Hard to believe that 2021 is nearly at the finish line. Time sure does fly when you're having fun, or not, depending on how your year has gone. At any rate, Thanksgiving is two weeks from Thursday, and I'm ready to sit down and enjoy a great meal! Get those appetites ready!
    Take care y'all, and I'll see you on the 23rd! E
  7. I was up late last night doing some research and going through my notes for the thread when I made a discovery I had completely missed.
    Back in July of 2019, I wrote about a sweet chopped purple '50 Chevy. It was W.E.H.T. #176 and was owned by a young guy (at the time) named Greg Dyke. At the 1985 Leadsled Spectacular one of Rowdie's gals did a nice interview with Greg and he gave a nice rundown of the car. Greg said he was from New Lebanon, Ohio and mentioned his Dad helping him with the car.
    Like I said, I had never put the two together until last night, Greg is the son of Larry. Both cars were at the '85 Spectacular and even though Larry and his '49 weren't interviewed, there was some good footage of his car cruising around at the show which was one of the pictures I posted last night.
    Anyway, just thought I'd throw that interesting nugget out there. Here is a link to Greg's write-up so you guys can read it again and put the puzzle pieces together. E
    drdave, Sancho, 54delray and 5 others like this.
  8. Update time! Update time!

    Came across another little bit of information on a car we featured quite sometime ago. Back in September of 2019 I wrote about a neat little chopped '41 Chevy that I couldn't find a whole lot of information on. Like I've said before, I really don't like posting a car without the owner's name or where he or she was from, but I still post many of these cars without the information because they were influential cars that many of us remember. Plus it gives us a record of the car that can be updated as information is uncovered, or not, depending on the luck of the draw.
    Well, I lucked out and found some information. The '41 was W.E.H.T. #185. A few nights ago I was going through my Leadsled'ers, Kemp Gazettes and Trendsetters when I came across this. It was a classified ad in the "Midnight Auto" section of Trendsetter, Volume 7 Number 4 from early 1992. It was on page 17. The car was posted for sale and the owner's name was listed as Hal (unfortunately no last name) from Mendon, Michigan. I know it isn't much, but every little bit helps.


    Here's a link to the write-up so you can refresh your memory about the car. I'll go ahead and update the header on Hal's '41.

    That's about all for now. See you later..........E
  9. What Ever Happened To..........? number 281.

    1960 Plymouth "Sea Cruise"
    Owner: Roland Weller
    South Vienna, Ohio

    Oh those tailfins! Hard to believe they were only around for a short time, but they sure made an impression. A person can't help but think of tailfins and be taken back to the 1950s and early 60s, whether you were there or not! This was a great time that will never be seen again. I'm sure it was a great time to be alive.
    I remember as a kid that finned cars always fascinated me. There were still enough of them around when I was small that you would see them driving around once in a while. Back when I was about four or five we had an eccentric neighbor named Ray that had a yard full of finned Mopars. He lived about four houses down from us. His yard was very overgrown and had a hedge around most of the property. We were forbidden to play in his yard or around his property, but we used it as a shortcut from the street to the alley. When we cut through his yard we had to hurry, as he would often run out of the house yelling at us to scram. You had to be careful when you cut through the yard as he had an underground pit for working on cars. I don't ever remember him using it though. I still remember him having a few DeSotos, Dodges, Chryslers and Plymouths, all from the late 50s and early 60s, and all of them with those tall, crazy fins.
    A few years later we moved to the house my family owned up until about 20 years ago. My older sister and I used to walk to the Ross Barnum Library all the time. I remember a house on the route that we always took to the library having finned Mopars sitting on the street. There were six of them! The two that I remember most were a '60 Chrysler as well as a '60 Plymouth. The Plymouth was in beautiful condition and on occasion when we walked by it was gone, so it did get driven. It was a tu-tone baby blue two door with white in the front fender coves. It had the stainless steel rear quarter panel trim and stainless skirts. Thinking back it might have been a mild custom as it had wide whites, Olds Fiesta flipper hubcaps and dummy spots and looked to be lowered a little bit. One day as we were walking past on our way to the library, the owner drove off in the Plymouth and it had the great sound of dual exhaust coming out of pencil tips. I told my sister that "Someday I want to have a rocket car just like that one!"
    The first time I saw this week's custom was on Rowdie's copy of the 1985 Leadsled Spectacular. I was immediately taken back to the long walks I took with my sister on our way to the library and seeing that wild Plymouth! The car had a very similar look.
    But, before I dig in to the '85 Spectacular, I have to go further back to the first time Mr. Weller's Plymouth was at a Spectacular. As far as my research went, the car was finished in 1983, and was taken to the '83 Leadsled in Springfield, Ohio. The car was shown on the video a few different times, and I was able to get a few good shots of the car, albeit a little blurry. Rowdie was set up interviewing the owners of certain cars as they passed, and that's when the '60 cruised by. As the car is rolling into the shot, the first thing that grabs you is the one off double tube grille and the vibrant baby blue paint.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr d 83LSS.JPG

    In the next shot you can see the car was nosed, had shaved door handles and a nice set of lake pipes.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr e 83LSS.JPG

    The last shot of this sequence of photos shows the stainless steel quarter trim as well as the matching stainless skirts. This really took me back. If you look closely you can see the dual frenched antennas in the front door that I'll come back to later. In this shot you can barely tell it's a four door.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr f 83LSS.JPG

    When Rowdie recorded the Leadsled Spectacular and other videos, the "fairgrounds cruise" became a big part of each video he shot. For the '83 Spectacular version while Rowdie was cruising the 'grounds and filming, Roland's car was spotted sitting next to another equally cool '60 Plymouth. More on that car in a minute as well.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr g 83LSS.JPG

    This was about all I saw at the show in '83, but Roland's Plymouth made an impression as it was photographed and appeared in the KKOA Leadsled'er twice. On the cover of the Volume 3 Number 5 issue there was a small shot of Roland's '60 as well as his friend's that were seen sitting together in the video.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr c  Lsldr V3N5 cov 83LSS.jpg

    Inside the same issue on page 19 there is a nice shot of the Plymouth once again, making note of the fact that four doors can be cool customs too.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr b Lsldr V3N5 p19 83LSS.jpg

    For some reason, Mr. Weller's Plymouth wasn't on the video for '84. I think this was because the show was in Des Moines that year and it may have been too far for him to travel--who knows? Fast forward to 1985 and the "Sea Cruise" was at the show once again. This was where one of three iconic parts of the 1985 video were shot. If you own the video you know what I'm talking about here. There were three different group video interviews that Rowdie did at that show that were pure genius. He gathered a group of wild custom Buicks to interview, as well as a group of four '60 Pontiacs, and a group of four '60 Plymouths. As far as I know this is the only video this was done on. I guess the timing was right to pull it off, and these interviews have become one of my favorite parts of the '85 video, although I have many favorite parts (lol)!
    Rowdie gathered the four '60 Plymouths to be interviewed. This had to be a first. I mean, how many shows could four custom '60 Plymouths all be at all at the same time?
    In the next shot we have the four Plymouth owners and Rowdie's gal Valerie during the interview.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth i 85LSS.JPG

    From left to right is Dan Thomas who owned the very cool gray '60 two door that was parked by Roland at the '83 Spectacular, and next to Roland's '60 for the four car interview. He was from Springfield, Ohio. Incidentally, he is standing in front of Roland's car during the interview.
    Next is Roland "hisself". In the interview Roland mentioned he was from Springfield, Ohio, but he may have moved later on which I'll touch on in a bit.
    Next is Valerie definitely not looking like one of the guys.
    The next guy is a then young kid named John Wheeler from Huntington, West Virginia. He had just graduated from high school and made the trip to the Spectacular on his summer vacation. He had an incredible black '60 convertible that was given to him by his grandfather's neighbor when he was 8 years old. The car is mostly stock, but it was a real head turner.
    Last but not least is Ron Myers of Kokomo, Indiana. He owns what is arguably one of the most famous '60 Plymouth mild customs of all time known as "The Mayflower". I plan on doing a write up on this car in the not-too-distant future. Incidentally, Ron is Rowdie's cousin.
    After the interview, Rowdie got shots of the cars as they were driving away. Here is one last (blurry) shot of Roland's car.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth j 85LSS.JPG

    After the '85 show I never saw the car on video again. A few years ago when I got a copy of the KKOA's first book from 1992 on Ebay, a lot of the mystery of Roland's Plymouth cleared up quite a bit. On page 84 there is a nice shot of the car, and a nice write up with many details on it. When I read it I was intrigued by the mention of the scene on the rear deck of little sharks that had "munched on street rods and muscle cars." Now that I would have liked to have seen. It also said that Roland lived in South Vienna, Ohio, not Springfield as Roland mentioned in the '85 interview. I looked on the map and South Vienna is about 11 miles east of Springfield, so the two cities are very close to each other. This somewhat clears up where he lived, but not really. It does seem to indicate that Dan (gray '60 two door) and Roland were probably friends that hung out together.

    Roland Weller 60 Plymouth 4dr a KKOA 1 p84.jpg

    About six or seven years ago I was scrolling through the classified ads on Craigslist. I do it all the time, as I'm sure many of you do too, spending thousands and lengthening my wish list. I saw an ad for a '60 Plymouth so I had to take a look. When I clicked on it I saw a very familiar car. It was Roland's custom! I'm sure it was his car as it had the same double tube grille, stainless trim and skirts, shaved handles and even the '71 Satellite hubcaps. I was blown away! What are the chances of that little Plymouth ending up in the Denver area after being built in Ohio? I wanted to go check out the car just out of curiosity and because it was a survivor custom from the early days of the KKOA. I decided not to though as I didn't want to waste the seller's time as it was priced way out of my price range at $6500 OBO. Looking back I should have inquired about the car as I would have liked to have known if Roland still owned the car and was selling it or it had changed hands and someone else was trying to sell it. I had the pictures of it saved, but unfortunately they were on my last computer that crashed. I wish I had transferred them to a flash drive or memory card. Oh well.
    That's all I have on this one. I've been on the lookout for this car since my last sighting of it was in my area, but it hasn't appeared. Maybe it was sold and went out of the state or even out of the country. We all know how custom lovers from overseas love finned cars. Be sure of this though, if I ever do see it, I'll definitely make an effort to check it out and report back to you custom faithful!
    Thanksgiving week! Can you believe it? Seems like it was just Halloween! In a way, I guess it was. I hope that y'all have a great holiday and a lovely meal, but please remember to thank Him for all He has done for you. Things might be rough for you right now, but they can always be worse. We all need to think positive. This is something I really need to work on!
    I hope the holiday finds all of you in my custom family well and you have a blessed Thanksgiving. I'll see you on Pearl Harbor Day.
    Happy Thanksgiving everyone! E
  10. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,754

    from red oak

    From the 83 KKOA show. IMG_20211124_0002.jpg
    drdave, John B, OG lil E and 2 others like this.
  11. Those are the ones Bill. You definitely haven't lost your touch in the detective department (lol)! Thanks for sharing! E

    Great picture Jim! I guess that Roland, Dan and Ron formed a friendship early on at the Spectacular. Never seen the three of them together in the picture from '83. Thanks for posting! E
    drdave, Sancho, John B and 2 others like this.
  12. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,754

    from red oak

    Are you sure? It was in this issue. IMG_20211125_0001.jpg
    drdave, Sancho, John B and 1 other person like this.
  13. I just dug out that issue and took a look at the picture again. I have seen the picture before, but I wonder if the Plymouth in the front of the picture is a different '60 than Dan's. That's what threw me. Behind the '60 in the front I see Ron's '60 (pre-scalloped version) and Roland's baby blue more door. On the '85 video none of the cars had that paint scheme or the molded lake pipes with the rounded rear edge that I've highlighted in the photo.

    3 60s at the 83LSS b.jpg

    Maybe this is Dan's car as he mentioned in the '85 interview that the car had been recently painted, but the molded lakes weren't on it in '85, and the door handles were shaved. Seems strange that after all the work of molding the lakes he would remove them.
    Could this be yet another different '60 that was at the Spectacular in '83? E
    drdave, Sancho, John B and 2 others like this.
  14. 54delray
    Joined: Dec 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,174

    from Fremont NE

    Seems appropriate today, as we count our blessings, (and I've got too many to list here) I'll say that I am sooo thankful for my HAMB friends, many who I have been able to meet in person. Also thankful for those magazine influences of the early 80's that really turned me into a leadhead at a time when my friends were driving Novas, Monte Carlos, Torinos, Cutlass', etc...

    Thankful for Pat Ganahl, Jerry Weesner, Tex Smith, Rogelio Cevallos and the like who had a big hand in putting out the Custom Cars series from Hot Rod (above, which made me think of posting this reply) and Rod and Custom, and Custom Rodder, Classic and Custom and more...
    drdave, OG lil E, Sancho and 4 others like this.
  15. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,754

    from red oak

    drdave, OG lil E, 54delray and 2 others like this.
  16. Sum54ford
    Joined: May 24, 2012
    Posts: 204

    from St. Louis

  17. Sum54ford
    Joined: May 24, 2012
    Posts: 204

    from St. Louis

    Looking through some old pictures I have and I spotted the Woody Benson Mercury in the background. Notice the shortened 49 Merc fender trim, dummy spotlights, and frenched antennas on the fender. Too bad I don’t have a better shot! I
  18. Great post Bill! We appreciate you too as you always have very insightful things to add. I look forward to hangin' out with you under our tree at the 41st! E

    You guys are really getting good at the detective work. I think @Sancho is rubbing off on you! I'm convinced that the W.E.H.T. #279 '49 Merc was owned by Woody Benson. I'll update the header on the post.
    So sorry to hear that Woody is no longer with us. Rest in peace sir..........E
    drdave, Sancho, Sum54ford and 3 others like this.
  19. Man, how did I get so far behind on this thread? Can’t be all these house projects, sure can’t be age and forgetfulness…..must be stupidity. Lol. All caught up now and I see I have missed some cool stuff. As usual, I don’t know anything about any of them, but sure do enjoy reading about them. Thanks for continuing to plug away Ed!!
    Sancho, 54delray, Sum54ford and 3 others like this.

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