Boyd's 'Vern Luce '33 chopped 3 window Ford' is considered by many old fart hot rodders like me as THE car that put Boyd Coddington on 'the map. He build that trend-setting coupe in 1981, and it was based on a design study by Thom Taylor - a designer of hot rods & customs who's work was seen in "Street Rodder", "Rod & Custom", and "Hot Rod Magazine" back then. That car did more to define the super-smooth/barb-less style of hot rods for the better part of a couple of decades.
Here's more, as told by Thom Taylor:
At the tail end of the above article there's a list of the many talents that were part of Boyd's team over the years; Chip Foose has been arguably the most successful of those in creating his own brand, and as most everything related to design & style, he's been influenced by, and learned his craft from many others, esp from his equally-talented father, Sam Foose. Chip Foose was only 18 yrs old when the Vern Luce coupe was completed (in '81), and he was still learning the trade working with his father, Sam Foose - who was perhaps best known for his chopped '48 Ford coupe w/ the black & white checker board painted firewall. (btw - that would be a cool version to build using Revell's chopped '48 Ford) I met both Chip & Sam at the Goodguys' event in Pleasanton, CA in 1989 when they invited me to display my chopped & channeled / track-nosed '34 roadster alongside Sam's chopped '40 Ford coupe (the car w/ the lengthened doors & slanted B-pillars), and Chip's baby blue w/ red scalloped, chopped '28/'29 Ford Tudor sedan. (that car was definitely old school w/ it's malbox-type 'swamp-cooler' hung outside one of the side windows, etc.- definitely not yet in the style that Chip is now known for)
Chip didn't go to work for Boyd until 1990, and that was only as a part-timer, and 2 yrs later was brought on as a full-time employee. Boyd's signature style was already well-established by then; it was that Chip further refined it, and pushed the boundaries, but basically remained true to what Boyd had started. Earlier in Boyd's career, it was Boyd's close friendship w/ John Buttera that had pointed Boyd in the direction that he was best known for. . .Backing up a bit - perhaps the car that first got Boyd noticed (by the magazines) was his John Buttera-influenced '26 Ford Tudor that had an early version of his later trademark IRS. Boyd was still a mechanist @ Disney Land when he built that in 1976, and was constructing his cars in his home garage.. This article is recommended, and the many photos may inspire some new model builds, too:
I need to add that it was Marcel Delay and his 2 sons that did a great deal of the basic fabrication of Boyd's custom hot rod bodies, and thus contributed greatly to Boyd's reputation and his signature-style. But, that doesn't diminish the contributions that Chip Foose made, either. The first car that Marcel did for Boyd was done in the early-eighties - as I recall (and correct me if that's not correct). That project was a turning point for Marcel who had been doing almost exclusively exotic fabrications for restorers before he discovered hot rods. My '34 was another of Marcel's earliest efforts - but, I was only able to afford to have him construct the hood tops, sides, and grill shell for my car. Marcel later went on to greater projects - 'Cadzilla', Chezoom, Alumina Coupe, the 'WhattheHaye' - a one-of interpretation of a '36 Delahaye, and many other examples of both his incredible talents & workmanship - and not just for Boyd, either. . .It was Delay that did the rough-in work for Boyd who then pulled the project together after he received the body & it's parts from Delay. Chip was an integral part of the Coddington team, as were many other talents that probably got burned-out working 24/7 for Boyd (as exaggerated on the pseudo-drama American Hot Rod TV series). And, for the record, the way that Boyd was portrayed on that over-the-top TV show was not the Boyd that I remember. Boyd was both a hard-nosed hot rodder & a fair businessman making a decent living - perhaps, one of the first hot rod shops to do that. . .Super Shops - the once huge aftermarket retailer - screwed Boyd big time when they ordered, took delivery of, and then never paid Boyd for a large number of Boyd's wheels. One thing led to another, and Boyd went thru Hell and almost lost everything, until he rebounded (that chapter was portrayed on 'that TV show') until he passed away.
Chip's a terrific car guy in his own right, and is a master of color, stance, and subtle detailing that's not always handled well by other builders. He's also a really decent gentleman, as were/are those who I mentioned in this overly wordy reply. . .Didn't mean to hi-jack this topic, but, it's important to get the facts correct, and esp to not ignore those builders - many who have since passed - who had set the stage for the future of customs & hot rods. It's designers/builders - like Chip Foose - that now carry their torches forward. . .