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'40 Ford Pickup....Traditional Custom Rod


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I've just finished this modification of an FM '40 Ford pickup (bought cheaply at a toy show because it was missing a few parts and was extremely dusty).

I changed the dog-leg doors for discreet hinges, lowered the suspension, swapped in a super-detailed smallblock Chevy engine (wiring, plumbing, tri-carb manifold, fuel lines, linkages mesh filters, PE wing nuts on Cal-Custom valve covers), fabricated a custom interior, lathe-turned a spare tire cover in ABS plastic, swapped in a late-model ford rear axle with aluminum individual-leaf handmade rear transverse spring/shackles etc.,and added a custom tubing dual exhaust (using both polished aluminum as well as polished solder .

I also made an opening cowl vent (including mesh), and finished the bed with veneer and aluminum strips. Headlights are simulated lucas flamethrowers in chrome bezels and the tail-lights are handmade tear-drops. Wheels are chromies on wide whites with smooth dog-dish caps. The radiator top-tank is fabricated in polished brass.

Paint is custom mixed purple basecoat/clearcoat over a pearl base, the lettering on the spare cover is a combination of hand lettering and modified 'model railroad Letraset', and the hood center trim, windshield splitter, as well as the simulated mylar fender-welting are all done in fine plated wire..








Edited by traditional
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Nice improvements! I really like the opened cowl with screen idea and the doors open much better. Great job on paint and the lowered stance is excellent. I'm a fan of the original flathead but, the SBC is much more common in the hot rod world. Nice job overall, I love it! :wub:

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I forgot to ask what type of clear you used, Clifford. Sanded and polished too?

Hi Jim,

I actually use two-part real automotive clearcoat (RM DC98) from BASF, sprayed with a 'touch up gun', only because I'm accustomed to using it with my other hobby of restoring our old cars with my brother.

It's expensive but it goes a long way and unless there is a minor flaw in the finish that will require rubbing out, it goes on very glossy and stays that way. Since it's a two-part paint (requires a catalyst hardener), it sets up reasonably quickly and can be handled or masked in a day without any problems. I've had no problems with it on either metal or plastic.

There are some serious dangers, however, with two-part paints in that they give off iso-cyanate fumes when spraying and must be used with the right safety equipment.....correct respirator mask and good positive ventilation. Fortunately, I have that equipment and I always use it.....I want to be enjoying this hobby for a long time.

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