More often than not, when someone gets involved in the hot rod hobby it’s because they already know somebody immersed in the culture. That’s how Eddie Lindsey, from Weston, Missouri, was drawn in. His dad, Gerald, had a full-time job at TWA when Eddie was a youngster but, on evenings and weekends, Gerald and his brother ran their own salvage yard, so Eddie was surrounded by vintage cars from a very early age.

Eddie has always loved the cars from the ’30s-70s and, from the time he was 15 until he was 40, he competed in demolition derbies (claiming the state championship for some of those years, too). A few years back Eddie thought he’d like to own a ’39 coupe, but first he’d have to sell his ’41 Chevrolet sedan to finance the project. That didn’t bother Eddie too much because, even though the car was a reliable street rod, he thought it was ugly!

He found this ’39 Ford DeLuxe sedan at an auction in Centralia, Kansas, but it was intended as a parts car as it was so heavily rusted. Some of the parts had been stored in a barn (a good thing) but others were strewn across a field rusting away. But, for $450, Eddie thought he’d got a good deal.

He spent the next six years working with his brother, Jim, and his dad on reconstructing the sedan, which was a chore, as every lower panel section and doorskin needed attention (it was probably some sort of karma coming back into play for all those other cars that were banged up in the demolition derby!).

A rolling chassis from Total Cost Involved Engineering got Eddie a good base to build upon. A ’57 Ford 9-inch (3.50:1) went in out back with a set of RideTech airbags and a TCI Engineering Mustang II–type IFS (with another set of ’bags) was installed up front. To fill the fenderwells of the ’39, Eddie chose a 20x8.5 and 18x7 Intro wheel combination, wrapping them in Goodyear Eagle rubber (225/40ZR18 and 275/45R20).

The engine Eddie wanted for his ride is something you don’t see too often in a hot rod: a ’57 Ford 312 Y-block. He didn’t have to look far for the block (his dad owns 20 or so ’57 Fords!) and Eddie enlisted him to assemble the engine after the block came back from Camble Machine bored 0.030. An F-code cam went in, and an Offenhauser manifold went on, topped by a trio of Barry Grant Demon 98 carbs. Other performance pieces include a muffler system from Butler Muffler, a set of Red’s Headers, a Mallory ignition system with Taylor wires, and a Walker radiator. The engine was backed up to a ’68 C4 trans, assembled by Smithville Transmission.