Thursday’s Thoughts

Roadsters, Coupes and Sedans are the models that make up most of the traditional hot rods I like.  I have always loved the Deuce roadster from my early teens.  I guess that was due to the coverage in the magazines as I don’t recall anyone owning a Deuce roadster in my little Midwest town of Decatur, IL.  There were a few coupes, Model A’s, Deuces and model 40’s that were being built while I was in high school but most of my friends were really into custom Mercury’s, Shoebox Fords and Tri-five Chevrolets.  We had a few car shows in our town and that is when I realized that I really preferred the Deuce 5 window that was chopped and fenderless.  Mike, a long time friend of mine, from Pekin, IL have a copper colored one with all the best including a SBC chromed to the max.  Mike came from a money family and could afford to build whatever he wanted.

During a show his car suffered an engine fire and he asked my dad if he could leave it at our house for a few weeks until he could come back and pick it up.  I begged my father and he agreed to store the car in our garage.  That was all I needed to set me on the Deuce trail for the rest of my life.  I could hardly wait to get home from school so I could crawl all over the car to see how it was built.  Keep in mind that this was best hot rod I had every seen and it was in my garage.  The standards today are far better but believe me this one was no slouch in the construction and detail department.  The car had a 40 Ford rear end that was chromed as well as everything else under the car.  My dad helped me take off the burnt pieces so Mike could have them redone.  The car only stayed with us for a few days and Mike came back to haul it home to Pekin.  I don’t know what happened to the car but it left a lasting impression on this 16 year old high school boy.

Fast forward to 1965 in Detroit, MI where I had just moved from Decatur to start my career with GM.  My wife and I were newly married and living in a rented house.  The Detroit News classified advertisements were the place to search for cars (no ebay or HRHL) in those days.  I would always go down and buy the paper on Saturday night to get first look at the hot rods for sale.  I found my Deuce 5 window within a few months after moving to Detroit and drove it home.  I kept that car and purchased three more 3 windows while living in the Detroit area.  The five window was finally sold when I moved to Atlanta in 73.  By 1978 I had purchased another 5 window from Danny Bowles and drove it to Chicago when I was transferred.  To end this saga my passion for the Deuce roadsters, coupes and sedans ended when I purchased my first 1940 Ford in 1985 and found I could really be comfortable in a hot rod…but then in 2010…(TBC)

More on my renewed passion for a Deuce in a future blog.

Stay Tooned!


Jim’s 5 window is very similar to Mike’s car in 1957 only is was cooper colored with a white insert and firewall.  He did not run a hood or the fire would have destroyed the hood from the heat.  I can’t recall for sure but I think he ran Firestone whitewalls.

Here is a recent build with the Ohio look.  The look is timeless and will stick with me to my grave.

I saw Bob O’s coupe long before I met him and it sure has the old school look.  The top is chopped 4 inches.

Mercury’s were big in my town also.  We had very few this nice but we did have some nice ones.

Shoebox’s were cheap and plentiful in Decatur.  I always wanted convertible but in the Midwest they were scarce.

Chevrolet’s were also popular in high school.  Mild customs such as this one were affordable and comfortable for the high school prom.  The Corvette grilles were still hard to come by unless you knew some late night auto people.

Dick in our group has a very nice chopped convertible that only the West side of town boys could have owned.  The top is chopped 2 1/2 inches and the top is made of steel tubing which provides a wind free environment going down the highway.

I think the 40 coupe with a simple clean approach would have been popular in 57 and is still a big hit today.  Steve you can’t pay too much when they look like this.

The garage mate for the above 40 coupe would be a nice tudor sedan built by Roy Brizio.  Now you are in TALL cotton.

Today’s Woody in the snow….not dreaming!

Bob in Ohio is proud of his woody in the snow photo.  I love the car and the photo but Bob you can have the snow.  Come to LA in the Winter Time.

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