One of the most enjoyable parts of this job, even more so than attending shows, is opening letters or e-mails from readers that include pictures of their cars since it lets us know what our readers are building and driving. So when I pulled this solitary picture of Tim's mild custom '53 Chevy from the envelope, it put a smile on my face. He doesn't say whether he built the car himself, but it definitely includes all the right parts for a cohesive finished project, such as the '55 DeSoto grille, '54 Chevy taillights, frenched '53 Merc headlight rims, and the use of '53 Pontiac belt molding. The nosed and decked body and shaved doors, 188 louvers in the hood, dummy spotlights, and lake pipes don't hurt either! The two-tone green tuck 'n' roll matches the exterior paintwork.
While the Chevy may be period-'50s-perfect on the outside, the mechanicals ensure it can keep up with modern traffic, with a 350 crate motor complete with Edelbrock intake and 750-cfm carb, TH350 tranny with Lokar shifter, CEI power disc brakes, and Jamco 3-inch dropped coils, plus POSIES Super Slide rear springs. The factory power steering still works great, while a Walker radiator keeps the engine cool and Vintage Air A/C does the same for the occupants. Tim cruises Cincinnati in style with contrasting green pinstriping, and red steels behind those 'caps.
Tim Dalessandro Cincinnati, Ohio 1953 Chevrolet
Louis V. Messa Palmyra, New Jersey 1941 Ford Deluxe Coupe
Man, we love hammered coupes 'round here, and Louis' '41 hits the nail squarely on the head when it comes to chop proportions-not too heavy, but just enough to make a statement. With 3 1/2 inches removed from the front and an extra inch whacked from the rear, the back window was laid down "pretty hard," according to Louis. The vent windows are long gone, but the rain gutters remain, helping the visual flow from front to rear and avoiding too smooth a look. The hood was also pie-cut by 1 3/4 inches at the front to alleviate the nose-in-the-air look of many fat-fendered cars.
Speaking of fenders, they've all been smoothed and blended into the body, with the rear lights removed and replaced by '50 Merc housings smoothed to the fenders with custom lenses. The headlights have been frenched, and those pushbutton door openers are '41-48 Lincoln Continental items. Set in a valley on the front of the hood is a restored Caddy hood ornament, while out back the decklid is now free from protuberances. With all the bodywork complete, it was shot in DuPont Centari dark claret metallic single-stage enamel, before the cut and shut bumpers were installed.
Louis didn't stop when it came to the interior either, replacing the dash with one from a junkyard Chevette and adding '80s Thunderbird seats and a Billet Specialties wheel atop a GM column. Tan tweed and leather now cover the sumptuous interior, with Vintage Air A/C keeping the temperatures down.
Send your photos and info to: Rod & Custom774 S. Placentia Ave.Placentia, CA 92870or kevin.elliott@sourceinterlink