The term "hot rod" has been used for decades to describe a car that epitomizes individual performance. Whether it be acceleration, braking, or handling, it's all part of one hot rodder's dream. The ultimate hot rod blends aspects of performance and good looks to create one of one.
Performance and aesthetics are indeed a rare combination but when it happens you know it. Think back to the saying, "I can't explain it but I will know it when I see it." Such is the case with the '32 Ford highboy five-window belonging to George Poteet of Collierville, Tennessee.
No doubt the highboy has the looks of a hot rod and all that remains would be for each of us to take a hot lap to fully appreciate its performance. (Well, that isn't going to happen. However, for those who made it to the Grand National Roadster Show or the Detroit Autorama in early 2009 you had the opportunity to get an up-close look.) But we are getting ahead of ourselves. Oftentimes, "too many builders can spoil the hot rod." Not so in this case.
At one time or another each of us has managed to get out of step with our project. George was no different, his five-window was originally sent to Moal Coachbuilder's in Oakland, California, for the chassis and grille and then onto Dave Lane of FastLane Rod Shop in Donohue, Iowa. Dave was already underway with another of George's projects; the '32 Ford sedan delivery that graced the cover of the subscriber issue of Rod & Custom back in July 2008. Trying to keep with a timeline, the car was delivered to Rad Rides by Troy (Troy Trepanier) of Manteno, Illinois, where his staff produced the top chop and filled the roof. But then it was back to Moal to finish the project, which included more bodywork, paint, upholstery, and the all-important assembly.
The headliner is stitched in a military aircraft-style insulated covering while the Moal B
Some of the extensive bodywork included raised wheelwells, a large supply of aluminum used in the making of the decklid, rolled pans, frame covers, and the hood. A stainless steel piano hinge was used in the Moal crafted hood, accented by the one-off aluminum grille with a steel insert. Other subtle yet uniquely crafted Moal components include nerf bars, door handles, and mirrors. The bright finish was applied by Sherm's Custom Plating while Ricks Glass supplied, what else, the glass! The sheetmetal received liberal amounts of PPG British Racing Green paint applied by Al Aguayo and Mike Faccini from Moal. Forward lighting comes from OTB Gear in the vintage-style 682-J ("J" meant no parking light) Guide (or BLC) early headlights in the paintable case with chromed trim ring. The popular '37 Ford taillights are held in position with a nifty surround utilizing eight polished Allen button-head bolts. (Look closely and you will note that the nerf bars feature the same style of surround.
All good hot rods need a motor with a little 'tude to get them down the road. Keeping with the Ford-in-a-Ford theme, George opted for a Ford Racing Performance 351-inch, 415-plus horsepower V-8 with plenty of custom appointments. Readily visible is the Price Motorsport Engineering (Hope, Indiana) intake topped with a pair of Holley 1848 four-barrel carbs dressed with fabricated air cleaners from the Moal workbench, all resting between a pair of Blue Thunder valve covers. Other performance parts include an MSD ignition, Taylor wires, Powermaster alternator, Moal custom headers (2 1/2-inch exhaust pipe running under the chassis), and Turbo Tone mufflers. Shifting this power to the rearend is a Tremec TKO 500 box with a Centerforce clutch, Moal custom-made shifter, and a driveshaft from Drive Line Service.
We mentioned the rearend, what would you expect in a Ford? Yep, a Ford 9-inch with 3.89 gears, Trac-Lok diff, and Strange S/S axles fill up the housing. Holding everything in position are a Moal-fabricated four-link and Panhard bar, Schroder Racing torsion bar with Moal arms, Strange adjustable shocks with Moal shaft covers, Wilwood Dynalite calipers and 12-inch rotors.
Taillights are '37 Ford but they never looked this good; now housed within a metal surroun
The Moal Roadchamp suspension in front is based on a drilled and chromed I-beam axle with Schroeder torsion bars, Magnum (early Ford style) spindles, more Wilwood Dynalite calipers, and 12-inch rotors, again Strange-adjustable and Moal-covered shocks, plus a Moal center guide Panhard bar. Other Moal frontend appointments include hairpins, batwings, and torsion arms. Finishing out the brake system is a Moal master cylinder, pedal assembly, and bias bar (brake proportioning).
All of this suspension needs a true hot rod steering to keep pace. How about a Tommy Lee-built 12:1 power steering box operated through an ididit steering column twisted via a Moal custom wheel? We would be remiss if we didn't mention that the Moal Roadchamp chassis is configured as a tube space frame fabricated from 4130 chromoly with 1 5/8-inch main tubes supporting a 110-inch wheelbase. Holding the Roadchamp up are Blondel wheels, 15s in front and 16s in back wrapped with BFGoodrich Radial T/A rubber measuring 155/80R15 and 245/75R16.
For all the "eye candy," what may be the single most attention-grabbing feature of the Deuce is the interior. It has a distinctive feel, something you may have seen in a military aircraft. The headliner, overhead console, and the Moal Bomber gauges by Classic Instruments go a long way toward supporting this feel. Did we mention the aircraft seatbelts? Tom Sewell of Cambria, California, stitched the green leather and custom gray carpeting over the Moal-designed seat and custom panels. Dynamat is used for insulation while Vintage Air supplies plenty of cool (or warm) air. The overhead Moal fabbed console houses a Moal mirror, ignition, and fuel toggle switches, start button, a complement of A/C switches and four Moal Bomber gauges (oil, temp, fuel, volts). A Moal modified '32 dash is retained and encompasses a pair of Moal Bomber gauges (200-mph speedo and 10,000-rpm tach) by Classic Instruments.
Oftentimes the most exciting aspects of a hot rod can't be seen. It's true that while a hot rod looks great once painted and upholstered often the real "beauty and craftsmanship" lies beneath the smooth paint, bright chrome, and all those well-placed stitches. Please visit www.streetrodderweb.com and view numerous construction photos that will give you an even greater appreciation for all the talent that went into constructing this Deuce coupe. It's worth starting up the ol' computer to enjoy the making of this one-of-a-kind hot rod.
The Tom Sewell green leather interior is a blend of styles. You will see the '32 influence
The modified Deuce dash houses a very cool 200-mph speedo and 10-grand tach, both Moal Bom
The sporty car influence via the clutch/brake pedal combo. Moal is big on proper mechanica
The Moal Roadchamp front suspension is based on a drilled I-beam axle, Strange adjustable
Resting beneath loads of custom touches is a Ford Racing Performance Parts 351 outfitted w
The twin Holley 1848s rest on top of a Price Motorsport dual-four intake and custom-made M
A Moal signature component is this drilled and sculpted driver side door handle. Rather th
The painted aluminum Moal grille with steel inserts is truly a work of art and race car in