Clif NelsonAdams, North Dakota1957 Ford Fairlane 500Clif knows that a custom need not be radical to be cool, and his mild Ford is rolling proof. The subdued cruiser was actually almost finished when Clif bought it. The interior needed finishing, but an updated 351 Cleveland/C6 drivetrain was in place, while the body wore custom touches like dummy spotlights, hood louvers (256 of 'em!), a tube grille, frenched headlights, custom taillights, and a pearl white finish. Clif says he "drove the wheels off" the fine Ford until a run-in with a deer sidelined it. Fortunately, Clif's buddy Dale, a fellow Valley Cruiser club member, was able to fix the body and re-spray the white finish, while a local upholsterer stitched the white vinyl and maroon cloth interior. With both the outside and inside freshened up, this Fairlane is primed and ready for many more miles of cruisin' fun.
Merle BalkeKentwood, Michigan1948 Chevy FleetmasterMerle didn't have to wait for our March '07 issue to discover how cool fat-fendered cars are; he was already having rotund fun in his four-door Fleetmaster. Merle says he bought the Chevy off eBay, and it sounds like he's plenty happy with his purchase. The big sedan is set up with the usual, reliable street rod goodies-Mustang II-style front suspension, 350 V-8 backed by a TH350 automatic, and a 10-bolt Nova rearend. The dark purple paint is set off nicely with chrome steel wheels capped with '52 Chevy-style center caps from Wheel Vintiques and wrapped in BFGoodrich radial whitewalls. The cavernous cabin is upholstered in comfortable two-tone gray cloth, and Merle says the chassis and engine compartment are well detailed on this comfy, pudgy driver.