Rod & Custom Feature Car
Jim Olsen
Bakersfield, California
1938 Willys pickup

Former owner Bob Hutson built the custom 2x3-inch, .120-inch wall, rectangular-tube frame, which Jim fitted with a 4.11:1-geared Currie 9-inch rearend attached with custom ladder bars and Aldan coilover shocks. Up front, a chrome '32 Plymouth axle was mounted ahead of a Model A leaf spring, with custom radius rods keeping it in line. Chevy spindles ('49-54 vintage) swing on the axle's ends, and mount 10-inch disc brakes from Stainless Steel Brakes Corporation. A Dodge Omni rack-and-pinion assembly points the way.

Larry's Performance in Montebello did the machine work on the '76-vintage 454 (now displacing 468 ci), and Mike Nordahl at Willys Replacement Parts in Alta Loma assembled it using Speed Pro 8:1 pistons, a custom-grind cam, and COMP roller rockers. The Weiand intake is topped with a 6-71 Mooneyham blower fed by dual Edelbrock carbs. Squeak Bell at the Kiwi Konnection built the muffled zoomie-style headers, and Toy Shop Transmission beefed up the TH400 transmission. Cooling is handled by a Stewart Components water pump and twin 13-inch SPAL fans mounted on a custom aluminum radiator built by Canada's Billy Kydd.

Wheels & Tires
E/T Classic Five wheels are a great race-flavored choice, and measure 15x4 inches in front, and 15x12 inches in back. They're wrapped in Hoosier 165/R15 and 31x16.50 tires.

Body & Paint
The pickup body takes on a whole new look without fenders, and appears even more radical now that the hood has been stretched 10 inches and engineered to flip forward.Adjure motorcycle headlights flank the shark-nosed grille, and a custom aluminum fuel tank-built by Ogawa Enterprises in Corona-resides in the cowl area. The cab now features a roll-down rear window, and wears side-view mirrors from Vision Concepts. The abbreviated, custom-built bed has wheeltubs, a ventilated tailgate to help the radiator breathe, and Juliano's LED taillights. Extreme Automotive in Corona performed the bodywork and sprayed the DuPont Viper Red paint, while Rodney Bowser at Independent Detail rubbed it out. Imperial Custom Plating in Fresno did the chrome.

The comfy cabin is fitted with custom door panels and Miata bucket seats, all covered in gray leather and velour by Jerry and Brian at Custom Works in Bakersfield. The Fiero tilt column is topped with a LeCarra wheel, Auto Meter instruments fill the dash, and the floor is fitted with Mercedes carpet and a B&M shifter.