All of us have a story on where or how our project came to be. Cory and Michele Eberle’s story, of Ellis, Kansas, was a long time in the making; decades to be exact. Their ’25 Dodge touring turned two-door roadster pickup is a story unto itself. The ’25 Dodge touring body was living its life as a T-bucket-styled hot rod during the ’70s and belonged to Greg and Steve Kroeger. Cory had seen the car and thought it would be an inexpensive yet fun way to get a hot rod.
The time came in 2006 when Greg opted to pull the powertrain and put the car out to rest in a neighboring field. The bucket was tired and in need of some major refurbishing. Cory talked Greg into selling him the body under the stipulation that major reworking would ensurenamely a new frame.
Nothing says “get out of my way” like a 429 Ford big-block in a car weighing less than 2,0
From here Cory and fellow hot rodding friend Mike Keller, of Big Creek Restoration in Ellis began working in earnest. The first year of construction saw a new frame, battery box, ladder bars, steering box, and shock mounts fabricated. Next up was a powertrain, plywood floor, it will work for now gas pedal, and shifter. Giving the roadster some semblance of direction, the body was spray-painted in flat black with a bright red firewall and grille shell.
Come the winter of 2007, the frame was finished out and painted. The firewall, grille shell, and steering column were painted gray. So much for 2007 as the roadster saw little road time but 2008 was to prove to be a major turning point.
Cory and Keller thought it was time to shed much of the Model T identification and make the car more in line with its Dodge heritage. From here an original grille shell was rounded up and things began to happen. With a little help from drawings by Jason Rushforth the project zeroed in on a direction of looking like a factory-produced Dodge roadster pickup.
Frank Wallic made the bomber-style bench seat that is covered in 50-year-old dark brown le
The newly fabricated frame houses a pair of 32-1/2-inch ladder bars that locate a ’57 Ford 9-inch rearend with 3.0 gears, posi differential with 28-spline Ford axles all positioned by a Pete & Jakes Model A transverse spring. The rear brakes are a compilation of Wilson Welding finned backing plates and 45-fin Buick, 12-inch-diameter drums. Shocks come by way of Pro Street Rod (SM500s).
The front suspension is based on a ’37 Ford I-beam and split wishbones with ’40 Ford spindles, Pro Street Rod shocks, and again, a combo of Wilson Welding and Buick finned 12-inch drums. The master cylinder is a ’66 Ford fruit jar (single reservoir) with a custom-fabricated pedal assembly. The steering box is a Maverick while the steering column is made from 3-1/2-inch aluminum (hefty!)no visible support. The floating column is topped with a custom wheel with engine-turned spokes. At the corners are Team III (model E-T Altered) all wrapped with Firestone/Coker rubber. The ribbed fronts are 15x5 with 5.00-15 while the rears are 15x8 with grooved 8.20-15s.
The ’71 Mercury engine is a very mellow 429, pumping 365 hp in its youth. An Edelbrock Performer intake with a 625-cfm Road Demon four-barrel supplies the mixture that once spent exists through custom BCR headers. The 1-7/8-inch tubes are coated by Performance Coatings Plus while the cones come by way of Cone Engineering. A Best Radiator is responsible for the cooling chores while Ford Racing valve covers that are powdercoated with the centers milled and engine-turned inserts dropped in by Cory. More detailing is seen on the March pulleys as they are powdercoated and the backsides are engine turnedmore handiwork by Cory. Getting the power to the Ford 9-inch rearend is a C6 tranny.
Frank has a sense of humor and often places riveted tags on his seats. This tag states: Hu
The home-fabricated steering wheel sports engine-turned spokes. The steering column was de
The front wheels are ET Team III (E-T Altered) measuring 15x5 circled with Firestone/Coker
Wilson Welding finned backing plates are used with 45-fin Buick brake drums. The headlight
The body is clearly the focal point of this hot rod and is based on a ’25 Dodge four-door touring complete with a Dodge cowl. Now the body sits as a two-door with a fabricated pickup bed out of 18-gauge and a 3-inch chopped windshield by Lance Moland of BCR. The bed, back of the cab, and 2-inch lengthened body underwent Mike Keller’s hammer along with the 2-inch stretched doors. More BCR handiwork includes the 3-inch sectioning of the grille shell with a stainless steel wire mesh insert. Much of the bodywork was handled by Allen Stouffer while the PPG black was applied by Ernie Fink, both of BCR, while West Coast favorite Von Hot Rod applied the lines.
The vertically mounted headlights are ’38 Chevy pickup while the mirrors are roadster-style with Bob Drake heads. Instead of the traditional chrome brightwork this roadster pickup features loads of nickel plating by Dan’s Polishing.
A 9-inch Ford rearend is used with a Pete & Jakes Model A spring and Pro Street Rod shocks
Inside you will find a ’60s era VW hood shaped into service as a dash. Note the use of a ’49 Nash Uniscope pod with its individual gauges converted to 12 V by Redline. The suspended pod is another unique feature of an already-unique Dodge roadster pickup. Wiring for the instruments and other electrical necessities was handled by Kyle Kinderknetch of BCR using an EZ Wire kit. Another noteworthy interior accessory is the bomber-style bench seat utilizing aircraft seatbelts by Frank Wallic covered in 50-year-old dark brown leather by Gasper Auto Trim & Upholstery. The door panels are aluminum and leather wrapped while controls are hidden beneath the black Pyramid rubber covered floor in a box directly in front of the driver.
Hot rods come in all sizes and shapes, all colors and styles, and all makes and models. Building a one-off Dodge roadster pickup makes perfect sense to the hot rodder with individual tastes