He did find solace in Brookville’s version. Unlike Ford, the company builds it using the conventional roadster cowl and doors. The unique cab backside yields as much interior room as a conventional roadster body, basically 9 inches longer than a real ’32 open-cab pickup.
Naturally, the body fits the Deuce chassis. The bed, as Crawford discovered, is a different story. “Brookville says that the bed fits a ’32 frame, but what it didn’t make clear is that it fits Brookville’s ’32 frame.” Naturally chassis modifications followed.
But it was in those challenges that Crawford realized his creative genius. For example, the lack of space for a conventional battery inspired him to mount two thin 6V batteries behind the seat. Making the entire exhaust system proved challenging but it offered him the opportunity to learn to TIG weld and to route the downpipes along rearmost primaries and tuck the entire exhaust system within the framerails. “This makes things pretty busy near the brake and clutch cylinders but it’s manageable,” he notes.
Steve Gerrig and Crawford shot the grille shell, body, and bed in PPG DP90LF primer in Crawford’s garage, “[A] big mistake if you value your garage,” he cautions. They shot the details—the firewall, engine, wheels, and chassis parts—in single-stage PPG Viper Red. Crawford lit the car with Bob Drake’s version of Arrow headlights and ’37 Ford taillights.
Idaho can get chilly at night, even during the summer, so Crawford mounted a Vintage Air heater on the firewall. He and Mike Maris wired the car with an American Autowire harness. So he wouldn’t have to work upside-down and backward Crawford attached the fuse panel on a magnetic mount that sticks to the firewall. “It cost nothing and allows me to take it out in 15 seconds,” he boasts.
“This was quite an experience,” Crawford admits, who’d until this one tinkered with and helped build other cars. “With enough welding wire and grinding wheels even an amateur can do this,” he concludes. “… it just takes a long time and a good attitude.” And we say it also took a good mind’s eye to see this project through even if it was his ear that inspired him. She’s real fine, his four-oh-nine.
Crawford chose a small Denso...
Crawford chose a small Denso alternator from a Kubota tractor and made brackets to fasten it low on the engine. “It only puts out something like 40 amps but it is more than enough for my no-frills car,” he says.
Though hidden by Moon spun-aluminum...
Though hidden by Moon spun-aluminum wheel discs, the 15x5 and 16x8 wheels are actually ’40 Ford-style Gennies by Wheel Vintiques. They wear Firestone 5.00-15 ribbed tires and 8.90-16 blocks.
Even wide-ratio four-speed...
Even wide-ratio four-speed transmissions behind torque-happy engines demand compromise: short gears for acceleration or tall ones for highway speed. Speedway Engineering’s Super Max quick-change axle at least makes those choices quick and easy.