David and Lisa Wehrly
Manhattan Beach, California
1932 Ford Coupe
The Wehrly boys built their '32 Ford right over 50 years ago, and the 1950 Cadillac 331ci mill that served them so well back then was lovingly rebuilt to original specs by Ray Zeller (Whittier, California). Early performance goodies include original factory dual carbs rebuilt by Chuck Smith (Valley Center, California), a Du-Coil ignition, and vintage handbuilt headers. Backing the Caddy mill is a TH350 auto trans converted to hook right up to the Cad bellhousing by Dave Smith Engineering (Exeter, California).
Since the original chassis had paid its dues and seen more dragstrip duty than most, it was permanently retired in favor of a fresh step-boxed unit from SO-CAL. Modifications to replicate the originals were made and components including a Magnum 4-inch dropped axle, SO-CAL hairpins and Buick-style drums concealing disc brakes, Pete & Jake's shocks, and a Vega steering box handle the front end of the chassis. Under the rear a Model A spring suspends the same Halibrand quick-change-equipped rearend the twins installed decades ago, but it has been updated by the Hot Rod Works for open drive and use of late-model 9-inch axles and brakes. A driveshaft from Inland Driveline transmits the power from the Caddy to the quickie.
The stunning good looks the Wehrly coupe displays today are the direct result of amazing tin repair by Bobby Walden and mirror-smooth, custom-mixed PPG orange paint laid on by Abe Rodriguez. The proportions unique to the Wehrly coupe come from the body channeled the width of the frame mated with full fenders (bobbed in the rear) and the unchopped and unfilled top. A 3-inch shortened grille shell and insert finishes the look.
Wheels & Tires
The four corners are supported by the same set of "no-hole" Halibrands first bolted to the coupe nearly 50 years ago. Now fully polished to an amazing shine, the 15x6- and 15x8-inch magnesium rims require almost constant upkeep to maintain that glow. Coker 5.60x15 tires are mounted up front with the original 8.90x15 Goodyear "Blue Streak" Indy rain tires still running in the rear.
The interior had seen its best days decades ago, so a completely new black Naugahyde upholstery job by Gabe's Auto Interior was a welcome addition, completing the restoration. Held over from the original build is the modified '40 Ford dash and Covico steering wheel with new Moon gauges added to keep track of the important vital statistics.