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where is my 53 Ford custom? Found!!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by ss34coupe, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Chad - there was an article in a 1960 issue of Rodding and Restyling showing how to make this taillight modification to 52-54 Fords. My car was built first with 56 Olds taillights, another popular mod of the time. Is your car the same one with the 54 Desoto grill that I posted a pic of earlier in this thread?
     

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  2. Chad_The_Sailor
    Joined: Aug 10, 2013
    Posts: 79

    Chad_The_Sailor
    Member

    Ah cool, no my car had a 55 Plymouth grille in it ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1384359964.251249.jpg


    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  3. butchbov
    Joined: Jul 10, 2005
    Posts: 25

    butchbov
    Member

    I think it's great you found it & even better that you brought it home. I have a friend that tracked his first car down, a 69 GTO Judge, & saved it from a scrap yard in minnesota. He has it all restored & even found the origional license plate for it.
     
  4. Just went threw your thread.. great story. Awesome to see it back in good hands.
     
  5. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

     
  6. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Thanks guys!
     
  7. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    The convertible should be coming off the hoist this weekend and then the front sheetmetal will go on. Will be worth taking pics then because the project will actually look like a car. Will post them so you can check out the progress.
     
    volvobrynk likes this.
  8. Dave B.
    Joined: Oct 1, 2009
    Posts: 225

    Dave B.
    Member

    Just found this thread... I don't know how I can miss so many good ones, but I do.

    Great story - and good to know that the car is back with someone who will care for it.

    I didn't see any mention of paint/interior in the thread. Are you going back with the original color combination? I think that it looks very 'right' and period correct in those colors.
     
  9. first time i saw this... how cool, congrats on getting it back. looking forward to some more pics. Keep pluggin away at it
     
  10. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Dave B. - still have not decided on the color combination - it was a nice blue with white interior. Back in the day when I first owned the car, I liked the blue body color but was not crazy about a white interior. Other than going blue for the exterior and interior, I don't know what other than a white interior will work. Anybody got any suggestions?
     
  11. tapkoote
    Joined: Feb 6, 2013
    Posts: 70

    tapkoote
    Member

    I'll vote no on the white interior.
    Black-Light blue. or what ever.
     
  12. Olderchild
    Joined: Nov 21, 2012
    Posts: 476

    Olderchild
    Member
    from Ohio

    Great story found the one that got away. I've always like the old tuck n roll in blue and white not necessarily in stripes maybe blue with white seat inserts either way i like the tuck n roll ,how about the blue flake stuff :cool:
     
  13. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Some more progress.....
     

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  14. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Car is now off the hoist and on to painting the inside, floor etc, and assembly of the front sheet metal. Hey, in no time it is actually going to look like a car again! This pic is a reminder of what the inside used to look like....
     

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  15. Great thread keep going!
     
  16. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Well I have been plugging along on this project the last few weeks and am making some progress. Will have some more photos up soon to show what the old custom looks like now. These major rebuilds take a lot of time and effort!
     
    volvobrynk likes this.
  17. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    yes I know it has been awhile since I provided an update on this project. I have been working a lot on the 53 convertible, just not stuff that is photo-worthy. Today though is a different story, and here are some photos of the front suspension all rebuilt and finally together. Feels good to have the car back on four wheels. Next the front sheetmetal goes on. The front suspension is stock 53 Ford with coils and disc brakes from Jamco.
     

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    volvobrynk likes this.
  18. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Got the inner fenders and venting structure installed. You can see that I am missing 3 of the 4 hood hinge springs - so if anyone has some for sale, send me a pm. Next task is to install the front fenders and grill surround, then the hood.
     

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  19. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Couple more pics - now to cover all this up with sheet metal!
     

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    volvobrynk likes this.
  20. peter schmidt
    Joined: Aug 26, 2007
    Posts: 657

    peter schmidt
    Member
    from maryland

    So cool you found it I know of a convert that year sunk almost mid door but most the convertible stuffs still there if your missing any convertible only parts let me know and ill stop in and talk to the guy again
     
  21. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Thanks Peter, right now I have most everything I need but am looking for some hood hinge springs. Might be worth it for you to strip all the good parts off that convertible - parts like the folding top mechanism and all the stainless pieces that are on a 52-54 Ford are getting harder to find.
     
  22. peter schmidt
    Joined: Aug 26, 2007
    Posts: 657

    peter schmidt
    Member
    from maryland

    If I had a bit more space I would have tried to drag it home all ready and strip all the use able parts but my space is very limited unfortunately I doubt the hood spring are any good but next time I'm by there I'll takea look its a shame the guy said he drove it where it sits and just let it sink he's got a 53? Chevy sedan delivery too I've been eyeing up but last thing I need is another car.
     
  23. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,347

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I had a low mileage '53 Vicky that I drove stone stock for 2 years, '74-'76. Just couldn't do anything to it, the car was like new!
    I also had my roadster, and my F100 was still getting its drivetrain.
    Then I got the bug to customize it when I tripped over a pair of Foxcraft flare skirts at the Watsonville Swap Meet! Went out to the Bayshore Wreckers (south of S.F.) and took the grille out of a '55 Desoto...(similar to yours, but with the rectangular parking lights;) the whole unit just floated in the cavity like it was born there!
    Did the single '55 Olds taillights, flattened rear springs (on my anvil!) removed and cut 2 front coils, 6,70 X 15 WWWs, 2"...Drilled out rivets in front wheels, inset them 1/2"...
    My '55 Olds Fiesta hubcaps interfered with the tall centers, had to get some clearance!
    Found the hubcaps behind the office at Tully Auto Wreckers: $5 for the pair!
    Rear was too low to see the rear caps, (rear wheels were painted red...that long ago!)

    I have a couple of old snapshots, would send 'em in an email to someone that could add them here...
    Von Franco dug that car, wanted to paint it...I was knee deep in my new shop, Vicky stayed powder blue with grey primer over her shaved nose, deck, doorhandles...
     
  24. Tudorp
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 174

    Tudorp
    Member

    Great that you found it and saved it from a crusher or further decomposition. I do know the feeling though. back in 1980 I restored a 1966 IH Scout 800. Was like new when I sold it when I was transfered to Germany in the Air Force. Always regretted letting that old gal go. Many years later went looking for it, only to find it completely taken apart and in worse condition than your Ford was found. Broke my heart. I didn't save it, and left it were I found it. Kinda wish I did save it again, so I can contest that if you had left her, you would have regretted it regardless of the work ahead of you (again). Good on you.
     
  25. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Tudorp - you are probably right, I would have always wondered what could have been if I had let my old convertible go when I found it in 2007. It was in terrible condition then and it is a huge undertaking to bring it back to life. I guess I have become used to working on 34 Ford coupes, and 53 Fords are much bigger and more complicated cars. So I have to keep reminding myself to keep going on the convertible, that is the only way it will get done. Thanks for your comment.
     
  26. koolkemp
    Joined: May 7, 2004
    Posts: 6,007

    koolkemp
    Member

    I had forgotten about this thread! Glad to see that you are still plugging away at it, the end is coming into view!:)
     
  27. Tudorp
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 174

    Tudorp
    Member

    Not the end. The end would have been if he walked away when he found it. It's a new, new beginning . ;)
     
  28. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    I was away from this project for a couple of years working on another one, so am glad to be working on the 53 again. Thanks for the nice comment.

    Hopefully a new beginning to a long life for this car once it has been rebuilt.
     
  29. ss34coupe
    Joined: May 13, 2007
    Posts: 4,145

    ss34coupe
    Member

    Plugging away on the convertible top mechanism today, got all the parts cleaned up and ready to install. Want to get the top set up and then work on the door gaps. Nothing but work but got to keep going on it. Will post more pics soon.
     
  30. I have a tip for you on the 53 front end. If you really lower it you will find it is hard to bring the front end into alignment because there is very little adjustment in the cams when it is lowered. I found the trick in a 1955 little book. You make a 1 1/2 inch block and place it under the upper control arm mounting bolts. You need to make a notch in the block to clear the shock bump and longer bolts but it cures the problem and gives you plenty of adjustment.
    I have a 53 club coupe with a 390 and C6 in it.
     
    Atwater Mike likes this.

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