David and Gerri Yow were tooling around in their chopped '33 coupe a few years back at the Goodguys Nats when they were struck by an all-too-familiar condition that strikes street rodders every year. The condition is known as choppedius coupitis and occurs when an individual with a growing tempestuous relationship with their lowered roof reaches wits' end. The condition, while not terminal, usually requires drastic action. In the case of David and Gerri, that action was to sell their cramped coupe and replace it with something a bit roomier.
A retired civil engineer who has since returned to the work force assessing facilities for the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Nationals Parks Service, David found himself traveling to the southwestern United States upward of two weeks a month, leaving him little time to take on a large project such as a street rod build. In order for the Yows to continue enjoying the street rod season as participants, they decided to buy a finished car that met their roomier criteria.
In the summer of 2002, while at the NSRA Nationals, the Yows caught glimpse of a gorgeous red '37 Ford coupe that perfectly fit their bill. Steve Panarites in Jamestown, Indiana, built the car for Leonard Allen, and it was for sale. But it would not be until the following year at the Goodguys Nats that David and Gerri would be cutting a check for the coupe.
Since purchasing the coupe, the Yows have put plenty of miles on the '37, including trips to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee-a nine-hour journey where four of those hours were spent driving in the rain with no wipers in Charlotte, North Carolina-and most recently to the Goodguys Great American Nationals in Hershey, Pennsylvania. David said the coupe runs, drives, and handles excellently, as evidenced by the recent running at Lowe's Motor Speedway by a friend who claimed 125 mph on the straightaway!
The engine compartment in David's coupe is tastefully void of any unnecessary accoutrement
The excellent driving characteristics are no doubt due to the talents of Steve, who built the car. Steve crafted a custom tubular IFS sprung by Carrera coilovers with Ford Granada disc brakes. Originally, Steve had used a Mustang II manual rack, which David has since converted to a power unit. A center-bolt Chevy 350 was dropped between the '37's 'rails, topped by an Edelbrock intake and a Holley carb. A Billet Specialties dress-up kit keeps the engine compartment clean, while an MSD ignition and a pair of block-hugger headers help the engine perform reliably. Behind the Chevy mill sits a GM 200-4R. While not quite as burly as the 700-R4, the 200-4R offers the same overdrive capability, while its more diminutive size takes up less space-a definite plus in the street rod world. Putting the power to the pavement is a Ford 9-inch hung on Carrera coilovers with a pair of Lincoln Versailles discs at either side.
Once Steve finished fabricating and assembling the car, it was taken across town to David Rippy at Hot Rod Alternative, where David-joined by Bill Todd and Brian Stinger-got the fat-fendered Ford nice and straight before laying down the PPG Honda San Marino Red. From the paint shop to the upholstery shop, the car was then placed in the capable hands of the crew at Hudson Trim, who pulled the vanilla leather over the seat and interior panels.
David and Gerri didn't let their lack of spare time to invest in a street rod build deter them from enjoying the hobby. Instead of spending their free time in the garage, they can now take pleasure in being out on the open road, cruising from car show to car show, the way our hobby was meant to be enjoyed.
Hudson Trim in Frnklin, IN, stretched vanilla leather and tan carpet over the interior to
A pair of Classic Instruments Vintage Series gauges house a speedometer on one side of the
Hubcaps of 1946 vintage sit at all four corners on Wheel Vintiques steelies shod in Diamon