1941 Ford pickup
What's to say about Josh Scott's pickup that can't be summed up briefly? It's a satin blue, Flathead-powered 1941 Ford pickup dropped over chrome wheels and whitewall tires. He didn't fight to get it, nor did he struggle to bring it back from the dead. There's hardly an exotic part on the truck. Yet chances are you can't help but check it out. Don't worry, you're not alone.
Largely what makes it so right isn't what Josh did as much as what he didn't do. You might even say he just sort of let the truck happen. "It's a good story actually because I got screwed at first," Josh jokes, describing the ad for a 1941 Ford pickup in Kettle Falls, a town about an hour and a half north of his Spokane base. "I called on it and the guy told me it had been spoken for. I saw it in the morning so whoever got it saw it real early."
On a completely unrelated note, he visited his pal Dan Ray who'd recently happened into a 1941 pickup. "Man it's super cool," he continues. "'Aw yeah, that keeps leaving me high and dry,' Ray tells me. I asked him where he got it and he says, 'Oh, Kettle Falls.' He was the guy who beat me to it!" he says, laughing (Ray's trading reputation is such that getting beat by him is almost as savory as beating another mere mortal to the punch). "I got it anyway," he acknowledges. "I had to pay more for it but I got it."
The circumstances of the purchase weren't the only things that set the stage for the pickup's evolution. "It was already a hot rod at one time," Josh says. "It was metalflake blue with primer spots. That's why I called it the shiner—black and blue, you know?
"That first year I lowered it," he notes. To achieve that he swapped the stock axle for a dropped Super Bell, bought a reversed-eye main plate for the front spring from Chris Swenson, and had a buddy flatten the rear crossmember. Rather than find perfect wheels, have them disassembled, plated, and reassembled, he bought chrome 15x5 and 16x6 Gennie wheels from Wheel Vintiques. They sport Firestone 5.60-15 and 7.50-16 Deluxe Champions.
"The second year, I did the new engine," he continues. For the most part Dave Swenson rebuilt the 59A with a Merc crank, swapped out the cam for a Winfield SU1A grind, and capped it with Edmunds heads.
Its Edmunds manifold sports two Holley 94s and O'Brien Truckers filters. The '56 F-100 generator gives him 12V power. Josh's pal John Gunsaulis found the old chromed headers at the Portland swaps. Dan Ray did a 2-inch exhaust, no mufflers. "Is it loud?" he asks rhetorically. "Well yeah, but it's all behind you anyway so who cares."
The engine might in fact be the only part of the build Josh really pushed. Almost immediately after installing it he set out for the inaugural Billetproof Northwest show, a trek that took him clear across the state and over a pretty big pass. "That engine was super fresh," he recalls. "It had maybe 15 miles on it and I said, 'I'm going.'
"The third year we did the paint," he recalls. Korey Huenink and Dusty Smith did the lion's share of the work. "I just did lots of sanding," Josh admits. Huenink shot it a color Josh chose to honor the truck's history, TCP Global's Hot Rod Flatz Midnight Blue Pearl. "I love it but it chips really easily," he says. "Otherwise it's great; I wipe it down every now and then and you almost can't tell if it's dirty."
Josh grafted 1940 passenger car taillights to the rear fenders. John Logsdon fabricated the stainless nerf bars. James "Jimmy Go Go" Barth trimmed the seat in dark-blue and white vinyl.
Josh Scott's pickup is simple. It's also cool. And the two aren't exclusive either. In fact the pickup owes its coolness to its simplicity.
But don't think for a moment that simplicity results from laziness or disinterest. Any proficient engineer or designer will testify otherwise; simple designs are the consequence of lots of hard work. By depriving himself of attention-grabbing gadgets, Josh had to consider the one part that most builders overlook: the vehicle itself.
And that kind of work ain't easy. Josh Scott just made it look that way.