Thursday, June 20, 2024
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One Hundred Percent Smooth Perfection – 57 Ford F100

I’ve always said it’s easy to make a good looking factory truck look cool. Most people would agree that the 57 Ford pickup isn’t factory gorgeous by any means. So, when a custom built 57 comes along like this one from Johnson’s Hot Rod Shop in Alabama, I really appreciate the builder’s ability. A quick look around the truck and you’ll notice a gorgeous paint application with graphite color used for parts that are traditionally chromed like bumpers, mirrors and the grille. The front bumper is tightly fitted to the lower valance and really fits the design theme of the truck. A big back window cab and perfect gaps round out the highlights. It’s 100 percent smooth perfection, front to back!

G Force Performance Designs & Builds New Belt Drive for LSA Supercharger

LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade
G Force Performance Products LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade

It’s never been easier or cheaper to add a supercharger to an LS engine. You’re probably familiar with the GM recall of thousands of GM OEM LSA blowers? Once they decided to replace the complete supercharger, it put a lot of them back on the street for sale at discounted prices. The OEM blowers were repairable with a little knowledge and work. Or, there are services out there to fix them for you. Either way, it made adding an LSA supercharger to your LS engine a whole lot less expensive.

There are some belt drive systems on the market for the LSA huffer, but none match what the design and engineering team came up with at G Force Performance Products. They designed a high performance belt drive system to turn the LSA supercharger without belt slip. By putting a little more tension on the belt and some smart positioning of larger idler pulleys, they managed to get the belt wrapped tighter and around more of the crank and supercharger pulleys. The result was minimizing, if not eliminating, belt slip.

They also used a two belt system, one for the supercharger and one for the other accessories. It’s smart because you can overdrive or underdrive your supercharger without changing the speed of your power steering pump or alternator.

One other thing we liked is that the pulleys and tensioner they used are off the rack pieces that you can easily find at most parts stores if needed.

They wrote a great article about their upgraded LSA supercharger belt drive system. It explains how and why they designed the LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade system the way that they did. You can read more about it here.

You can also buy one at their website: LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade system

G Force Performance Products LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade
G Force Performance Products LSA supercharger belt drive upgrade

Kustom Built Cars Educational Workshop – Hot Rod Restoration Program

The result of the build!

Kustom Built Cars Educational Workshop (non profit 501(c)(3) is a hot rod restoration program that teaches valuable skills to students out of high school as they rebuild a classic vehicle from start to finish.

Our 5-month workshop gives students hands on training which includes;

Disassembly, Basic suspension work, Color sanding, Rust repair, Basic engine rebuilding, Assembly, Metal work, Basic welding, Electrical wiring, Body work, Basic fabrication, and Painting.

Through training and mentorship this workshop aims to inspire the next generation to acquire the knowledge and skills in the automotive restoration and preservation industry by creating a hands-on experience. With over 30 years experience in restoring classic cars, Kustom Built Cars workshop wants to continue the 80 year tradition by teaching students who want to learn this unique trade that will help expand their opportunities and allow them to do what they are passionate about.

For more information or scholarship opportunities, please call (970) 697-8049 or visit

Hot Rod Tennessee Reaper – 56 Ford Panel Truck


We see our share of themed hot rods throughout the car show season. To be honest, they’re hard to build. Some concepts are just too over the top or just not done well. We saw this 56 sitting out back in the perfect location to shoot it. We nicknamed it the Hot Rod TN Reaper. An all black paint job sets the tone with a light painted hot rod theme down the side of the spacious panel truck. That’s probably one of those take-it or leave-it type items, but it’s a theme, and lots of people loved it.

We didn’t get too much info on it, but we could see it’s running fatty Hoosiers out back and disc brakes up front. Exhaust was routed out the body in front of the back wheels. Drip edges and both bumpers were shaved, and the front of the running boards were fitted tightly to the front fender to give this truck a smooth look.

Old School Mel-low Yellow 55 Chevy


Of all the fat fendered trucks, there are none fatter than the mid fifty GM trucks. This truck is old school with some modern touches. The formula is almost always successful. Take a big back window cab truck, splash on some gorgeous yellow paint, lots of chrome and the whitey whitewalls, and you’ve got an awesome old school hot rod. Red accents really add to the style! This 55 also sits just right with a low stance up front and a rake toward the back. An amazing wood floor in the bed is something to behold! It’s a beautiful build and worth a closer look!

Mike P.’s Unbelievable Custom 62 Chevy C-10 Pickup


Mike’s father had purchased the C-10 from the original owner who kept the pickup garaged its whole life. After owning it for years, he then sold it to Mike’s younger brother in his teens. He drove it for many years. It was then sold to a school mate of his. The truck sat for 5 years with intentions of restoring it. Mike then bought it and set out to build something nobody else had. Mike obviously has a lot of experience working on classic vehicles. Mike said, “It’s easy to rebuild a vehicle back to stock. I was not interested in doing that.”

Starting with an absolutely rust free truck is unheard of, but this 62 was perfectly clean! Suicide doors and a full tilt front end highlight the body mods, which Mike did himself. Mike spent many, many hours trying to figure out how to build the tilt front end and suicide doors along with the rest of the body mods. To get the hood to open properly, Mike added a hinge point on the frame 12 inches behind the bumper with electric actuators that open and close the front end. He also cut the roof off, insulated and removed the rain gutter, and then welded it back on.

Mike boxed in the frame which houses all fuel lines, brake lines and wiring inside. He kept the front torsion bar suspension, but completely rebuilt all components. The 62 rides on air bags with an on board air compressor. Mike installed a 2001 Chevrolet half ton rear end with 3:73 gears, narrowed by 7” to accommodate the 11” wide wheels. Classic industries 2” front drop spindles and disc brakes on all 4 corners bring this beast to a stop. A Hydraulic brake booster handles the stopping pressure. The parking brake is a 2” electric actuator that pulls the cables to set the brake that eliminated the hand or foot pedal inside. This C-10 is riding on Vision wheels 142 legend 5 in gunmetal grey. Front wheels are 8.5” x 18” diameter with 11” x 18” in the rear.

Under the hood is a 409 cubic inch small block chevy engine that has been balanced, crank ground, rods resized and bored .40 over. A 286 grind cam, Comp Cam springs and retainers with roller rockers control the valves. A high pressure high volume oil pump keeps the Chevy powerplant lubed. Induction is supplied by a sniper EFI system. Backing up the engine is a built turbo 350 with Gear Vendor overdrive.

Inside is an all leather interior. A full touch screen stereo with 800 watt amp, 2 – 10” subwoofers behind the seats and 2 – 5”x7” 3 way speakers in the front kick panels keep Mike rocking. Sound deadening was installed to keep the cab tight.

After 14 years of building, Mike says, “It has been a labor of love, but now it is time to enjoy it.” We couldn’t agree more!

Snow White 1990 Chevy C1500

We found this 1990 Chevy C1500 in Louisville, KY in 2021. These trucks were great platforms to build a low slung hot rod truck, because the design was perfect for it. Start with a good looking Bowtie pickup, add a cowl hood, slam it to the ground and add big wheel, low profile 5 spokes. It’s almost a formula to build an awesome truck, and it works! It’s definitely a favorite pickup design of ours.

48 Ford F1 Shop Truck

We saw this old school shop truck 48 F1 in Columbus in 2021 at the GoodGuys Hot Rod Show. Sporting a lowered stance, upgraded disc brakes and a straight body, this classic F1 was a great weekend cruiser!.Under the hood was a SBC with a 700R4 transmission.

Hot Rods Invade Kalamazoo For the 2021 NSRA Show

Hot Rodders from Michigan and surrounding states came out to the Kalamazoo County Expo Center for a weekend of fun and hot rodding. K-Zoo brings out a little bit of everything. While this show isn’t nearly as big as the NSRA Street Rod Nationals in KY, plenty of really nice classic cars and trucks were on hand of all types and years. There were plenty of used parts in the swap area. In fact, it was one of the bigger swap meet areas at the car shows we’ve been to. We loved visiting this show. If you haven’t checked it out, put it on your schedule next year.

Intense 53 Ford Pickup With A Blown Flattie


It just seems right that this 53 Ford truck has a blown flathead revving under the hood. 1953 was the last year for the flathead V8 in a Ford truck. Besides, who doesn’t like a blown flathead?

Looking around the rest of this 53, you’ll see a nice, quality build. You can’t miss this truck. The body is very straight with nice door gaps. And, oh, that color. We don’t know what it was called, but it’s intense! Deluxe grille teeth in a chromed grille up front round out the body highlights.

This ’76 Bronco is the Coolest of the mid-70’s Vehicles


The Mid-70’s weren’t known for great looking cars. We were in the middle of the fuel crunch, and performance and style were suffering. There were still a few bright spots in American auto manufacturing though. In that era, there aren’t many vehicles cooler than than the Early Ford Bronco.

This ’76 is an absolutely perfect Bronco. Beautiful workmanship, style and a fun summer ride make this a favorite. Under the hood is a V8 backed up by an auto transmission. Warn hubs, Warn winch and BG Goodrich rubber round out the highlights.

The Perfect 72 Suburban Family Cruiser!


We spotted this family cruiser 72 Chevy Suburban at the GoodGuys show in Columbus on the Midway. It’s in the resto-mod category with a mostly stock body that’s been smoothed of some trim and other mods. Under the hood is a 502 BBC and TH-400 transmission. Keeping that original style interior cool inside is an AC system. All of that ‘Burban body is riding on AirRide that gives it the perfect stance while maintaining road performance. Ten spoke Forgeline wheels fill the wells.

Barely a Truck, But Definitely an Incredible Classic Hot Rod


If all you need is a bed to be considered a truck, then this ’31 hot rod certainly is! It’s definitely 100% hot rod! We love that building hot rods can be so creative allowing builders to push the limits of what you think a hot rod is. We spotted this one at the 2021 NSRA show in Louisville, KY in line with a line of other really nice cars and trucks.

The chopped top, ride height and stance are all perfect. Add those FAT Mickey Thompson S/R radials with flame tread and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a classic hot rod.

Gorgeous Red 63 Chevy C10


From the 2021 NSRA Show we bring you this 63 Chevy. As resto-mod trucks go, this is one of the nicest you’ll ever see. It’s a near perfect build with just the right ride height and stance. The owner made a great choice with the 5 spoke wheel style and LS power under the hood.

Wild Lime Green 38 Ford Dually


It’s bright. It’s mean. It’s a cool ride! These style of pre-50’s BIG dually hot rod trucks with no fenders have gained popularity over the years. Like most, this ’38 is a custom build with semi styling, dually rims and tires in the rear and a big block Ford powering it down the road! With open exhaust, you’ll probably hear it before you see it!

1956 Volvo TP21 – Swedish Army All-Terrain Radio Car (Sitting On a Dodge Ram Chassis)

We found this 56 Volvo military “truck” at the NSRA show in Louisville, KY. It’s a really unique build using the Volvo body and a 1994 Dodge 2500 Chassis and diesel engine. We love anything unique and this certainly qualifies!