Jim Stockinger writes that he turns to “Yesterday’s Young Guns” first every time he gets a new copy of R&C, so hopefully he’ll get a surprise when he sees his old Poncho here. The ’60 Catalina was his first car, with a 389 that he reports ran good on the gas he pumped back then at 21 cents a gallon! As he says, “Of course a teen couldn’t get by without air shocks and chrome reverse rims in 1970!” These days he runs a ’50 Chevy that we featured in Readers’ Rods a couple of years ago, and is building a street/strip ’56 Chevy with help from son, Brian.
Mild customs like this ’52 Chevy are relatively easy to put together, providing you can find a base vehicle in decent shape these days! Dick stuck with the stock 235ci six-cylinder, though it has been rebuilt with a 3/4 race cam and solid lifters, dual Stromberg carbs, and an exhaust header feeding a dual system with glasspacks. The antiquated front suspension was swapped out for a Fatman Fabrications IFS, and the rearend lowered on Posies leaf springs.
After frenching the headlights, shaving the hood, trunk, and door handles—and at the same time converting them to electric operation—adding ’51 Chrysler taillights, and installing an Oldsmobile windshield, the sedan was painted a ’56 Chevy hue of greenish yellow, with gold and white pinstriping. The striping picks up on the new interior colors, also gold and white in rolls and pleats. Extra grille teeth, ’57 Caddy hubcaps, and new chrome complete the transformation. The Chevy is now rolling on wide whitewall radials.
After locating a stock ’30 A coupe on eBay, researching traditional rods, and talking to rodders from back in the day, Craig Paulsen set out on a four-year build, completing all the work himself except the chassis and roof chop. Kiwi Konnection provided the pinched Deuce chassis, to which Craig added a 3-1/2-inch dropped Model A axle on split ’36 ’bones and the stock spring with reversed eyes. Another ’36 wishbone locates the Halibrand quick-change–equipped ’41 rearend, with a Hot Rod Works torque arm and, again, the stock spring with reversed eyes, this time with two leaves removed. The 16-inch Ford steelies with Firestone Deluxe Champion tires complete the rolling chassis.
The ’50 Mercury 276ci Flathead was built at home using a Schneider cam, Johnson adjustable lifters, a pair of Stromberg 97s, and Offenhauser heads, then mated to a C4 trans with a Flat-O-Matic conversion kit. Once Chris Prince, of Sparks, NV, had completed the 2-1/2-inch chop, the body was mated with the frame. Plenty of original Ford parts were used throughout the project, such as a ’36 brake pedal, ’37 truck gas pedal, ’50 truck shock mounts, a ’32 grille shell, ’39 taillights, and an F-1 steering box and column. Non-Ford parts include a ’64 VW Bus steering box mount, military aircraft seatbelts, and a ’37 Plymouth heater. Sounds like the perfect mix to us!
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Mail vintage photos of you and your hot rod, along with detailed info to: Rod & Custom Magazine, Attn: Kev Elliott/Yesterday’s Young Guns, 1733 Alton Pkwy., Ste. 100, Irvine, CA 92606
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