Rod & Custom Feature Car
Josh Mills
Marietta, georgia
1935 Ford Three-window Coupe

The chassis for the coupe started with a stock '35 Ford frame. In the front, a '40 Ford frontend was used with a 3 1/2-inch Mor-Drop axle, a stock '40 spring, and '41 Ford shackles. Steering comes from a '40 Ford steering box and mount that Josh rebuilt. To drop the rear of the car, the stock '35 rear crossmember was raised and the frame was C-notched. A de-arched '37 rear spring connects to the stock rearend with 4.11 gears and a Columbia two-speed unit is attached to drop the ratio to 2.94 at cruising speeds. The '40 Ford Columbia controls supply the vacuum to switch the two-speed unit. A '39 Ford pedal assembly and master cylinder combined with '39 Ford brakes provide the stopping power and '39 Ford Houdaille shocks supply the dampening.

The factory relieved 59L '46 Flathead was bored out 0.125 inch and an offset ground 4 1/8-inch Mercury crank was used to achieve a 284ci displacement. The engine was taken to Atlanta-area Flathead legend "Putt" Smith for machining, balancing, and short-block assembly. Lift and duration are provided using a Winfield SU-1A camshaft with N.O.S. Johnson lifters and valvetrain. Original Edelbrock raised block-letter heads sit atop the engine as well as an Edelbrock high-rise intake with dual 94 carburetors. Josh made a raised fan idler to clear the magneto with a '35 fan. An offset chromed generator keeps the battery charged and spark is provided from a Don Zig-prepped Harman & Collins magneto. The chromed Fenton headers are routed through Mellowtone mufflers. A lightened '34 flywheel with a '46 clutch and pressure plate connect the Flathead to a '40 Ford transmission with factory 19/25 tooth Lincoln gears that Josh assembled.

Wheels & Tires
A stock set of '36 Ford 16-inch wheels was used on all four corners of the coupe wrapped with 6.00-16 Firestones. The hubcaps were made by mating stock '36 Lincoln Zephyr caps, which had the stainless outer band, and stock '37 Ford center caps.

Body & Paint
After Josh tackled the usual patch panels, the original rumble seat was converted to a trunk, which accesses the modified neck to the '35 gas tank. Josh chopped 2 1/2 inches from the front and 3 inches from the rear of the top and used a five-window roof insert channel to replace the poorly done fill job that the car came with. The fender skirts are original '40 Ford that have been heightened and reshaped to fit the '35 fenders. The '38 Ford bumpers were used and a modified '41 Ford grille guard was used in the rear with '38 bumper guards. The '39 Ford taillights were slightly frenched into the fenders. The headlights are '36 Ford lowered 1 3/4 inches. The grille was filled at the top and fitted with a custom bull nose and peaked at the bottom to match the fender lines. Burt Litton, who used to be a mold maker for GM, made the initial bull nose prototype that was later cast and chromed. Three additional hood side moldings were added for a simple but streamlined look. The original running boards were sent to Hunley Acuff in Rossville, GA, for re-vulcanizing. Once Josh finished the sheetmetal work, he took it to Josh Deavers at Customs & Color in Woodstock, GA, for the bodywork and paint. Dan's Polishing in Adamsville, TN, and Pro Plating and Polishing in Decatur, GA, handled the chromework. All glass was done by Glass by Mark in Cartersville, GA.

Josh joined the bottom section of a '40 Ford dash to the top of the '35 Ford dash. This setup allows for the use of the stock windshield roll-out mechanism and looks right at home in the coupe. A '41 Mercury steering wheel connects to a '40 Ford column and drop with a chromed shifter. A '40 emergency brake handle was also used. A chromed Hadees heater knocks the chill off in the winter. The coupe uses '49 Chevrolet armrests and '36 Plymouth interior handles. Burt Litton of Hot Rod Interiors in Marietta, GA, handled the burgundy and off-white Naugahyde job and the roof insert. The rolled and pleated seat is a stock '36 flip-up unit that has been lowered to accommodate for the chop. Josh wired the car using a modified '40 Ford harness.