The REAL DEAL unmolested 50's hot rod. Can't find one like this outside a museum
Price: - Item location: Manheim, Pennsylvania, United States
- Condition: Used
- Make: Other Makes
- Model: Custom built roadster
- Type: Coupe
- Trim: Roadster
- Year: 1959
- Mileage: 15,100
- VIN: SE7010PA
- Color: Beigh
- Engine size: V8
- Number of cylinders: 8
- Fuel: Gasoline
- Transmission: Manual
- Drive type: RWD
- Interior color: Brown
- Vehicle Title: Clear Want to buy? Contact seller!
1959 Other Makes Custom built roadsterFirst, I will be upfront and honest with any and all descriptions of this car. If you would like a picture of something, let me know; If you have a question, please ask. It absolutely infuriates me to buy misrepresented stuff over the internet so I refuse to sell stuff like that. Please read the entire ad before emailing questions.
This hot rod is located in Manheim, PA in a climate controlled garage (about 20 minutes away from me). Appointments to see the car can be made and are encouraged. It may take up to a day for me to get back to you with a specific picture request depending on what else is going on. Transportation from Harrisburg international airport can be arranged.
It is a passion and hobby of my fathers and mine to find classic cars (the weirder, the better) that have been stashed away from the public and bring them out of the garage. We (my dad is a master mechanic w/ 40+ years of wrenching behind him) and I get them running and driving and pass them on to people that are also passionate about saving them. I enjoy researching the cars history, writing, talking with people, and most of all working alongside my pops. We hardly ever finish a car or make decent money. You could consider us classic car matchmakers with short attention spans, lots of time, and bad business sense.
We planned to keep this car for a long time but an abundance of projects, a 19 month old son for me, and limited garage space means something has to go. This is an amazing example of an original unmolested 50's hot rod and quality craftsmanship. Not a remake, not a recreation, the REAL DEAL with an awesome verifiable story (We purchased this from the original builder). I believe this car should be enjoyed by more than just our family and friends and should be continued to be preserved. It really needs to be in a museum. The car has just over 15,000 miles since completion in 1958.
While you read through the description of this car you will ask yourself how the hell does this guy know all of this stuff? Answer: The car has a meticulous build book with everything listed from headlight bulb numbers to frame modification measurements. The gentlemen that built this car were engineers and machinists and quite meticulous and talented.
Here's the story: It was December 1955. 17 year old Ronald B. and his elder brother, born a decade earlier then he, sat at their families kitchen table in quiet Jonestown, Pennsylvania. The two sifted through stacks of Hot Rod, Rod & Custom, and Car Craft magazines they had collected over the last few years. Ron graduated in 1956 and spent his last years of high school drawling hot rods in his school books and dreaming of the new car culture born in Southern California just a few years earlier. He was an amateur mechanic and an engineering student. His brother, a machinist. Over the next year the two cherry picked the best ideas and aesthetics from publications and the best parts from local junkyards. In January 1958 construction began in their garage.
Most of the chassis is 1947 Ford. The frame was altered with the cross member repositioned and torque tube shortened 13.5 inches. The stock 3.78:1 rear was used as well as the wheels, brakes, backing plates, master cylinder, front shocks, rear sway bar, and steering box (with Crosley wheel and shaft welded on). It uses a model A front spring on a 32 Ford truck axle. The emergency brake is an altered 35 Plymouth unit. The battery box and the altered 12.5 gallon gas tank are from a 47 Buick as well as the sending unit.
The engine is a 303 from a 1949 Oldmobile 88. Interesting note, the 1949 Olds V8 is the first mass produced over head valve (OHV) engine. This particular motor is number 8A47961 and sports Gotha adjustable rocker arms and collapsed hydraulic tappets. The intake manifold had an inch trimmed off the carb pedestal. The 49 Olds 4 barrel carb had a 1/2 inch machined from the bottom and the venturi re-tapered.
The car is wired for 6 volts. The generator, voltage regulator, starter, distributor, fuel pump and flywheel are all 1949 Olds. It uses an altered 47 Buick radiator that was recently repaired. The guy we use (really old school guy) was able to salvage all the parts and re-brazed a connection. He commented on the quality construction and innovative design. It has a cooling system capacity of 16 quarts and runs 180-190 degrees even on hot days. The exhaust from the headers back is 50-52 Chevy and uses 47 Chevy motor mounts for muffler mounts. It runs cool and quiet.
The transmission is a 3 speed unit from a 39 Ford with 26 tooth Zepher (synchronized) gears. It uses an 11 inch Ford truck clutch, pressure plate, and disc. An adapter and bushing was used to adapt the gearbox to the motor. The shift and clutch linkage is custom and really trick. 47 Buick clutch and brake pedals were modified to work with swing type pedals.
The body is a 1931 Chevy roadster with the rear deck lid smoothed. It has a stock 31 Chevy dash with Rockne and Stewart Warner gauges. The top and side curtains are 31 Chevy that have been modified and recently redone in the original design with new steam bent bows, clear plastic windows, and premium cloth. The doors are 31 Chevy that have had the wood replaced with metal and use 50 Dodge outside door handles. The windshield frame is an altered model A unit. It uses an altered 32 Ford grille shell with brass welding rods for the upright spokes. The hood is a heavily modified 35 Dodge piece. The motor compartment side panels were custom made by Ron. The fenders were made by cutting down old Packard spare tire covers. The rear bumper is from a 49 Dodge with the ends cut off. Everything totally custom.
The wheel and trim color is Ford Torch red. The car was finished in 1957 Plymouth Buckskin beige and at some point has a coat of pearlescent clear applied. The paint looks great and has some very minor chipping where the hood meets the cowl and edges of the hood from removal and installation.
The car was completed in 1959, taken to Harrisburg (capital of PA), certified and issued chassis number SE7010PA. The car weights 2640 pounds and was designed to have perfect 50/50 front/rear weight distribution thanks to the mid mounted front engine.
The car starts, runs, drives straight, handles awesome and stops on a dime. Fire it up an go - the choke works as it should. It has plenty of power and shifts well with minimal grinding going in to third (only when its cold). No rattles, no squeaks. This car was over engineered for the rough PA roads. Welds are solid. Fender struts are 5/8" bar stock.
My father and I are both thin framed and over 6 foot tall and can get in and out easy after a little practice. It is tight but manageable with both of us in the car. The car is a little hard to see out the sides with the curtains in place due to our height. The radio (from a 46 Olds) turns on but doesn't work. It should be fixable (new tubes?) but who's listening to that?! It has a hidden heater and blower (behind a trick little shutter door) so cold weather cruising is comfortable. The car has a hidden spare tire accessible through a door behind the seats, under the rear of the body, accessible from the inside of the car (also has a cool little brass clasp). It has a super-solid, beefy, removable roll bar.
Since it was built in 1958 the only changes have been the removal of the custom front bumper (which we have), a coat of pearl, and coil over shocks in replacement of the buggy spring in the rear. That's it. New tires, a new battery, and a new top and side curtains were installed to "freshen it up". The car has had a recent tune up and oil change. The only bad things on this car is the oil pan has a large dent in it - It doesn't leak, but looks ugly and the transmission has a minor leak.
Ron daily drove the car through the early 60's - how cool would he have been back then!? He sold the car in the mid to late 60's to a young man who unfortunately didn't get to enjoy the car as he was drafted and killed in the Vietnam war. The family of that man kept the car in to the early 80's and sold it to another local man who didn't drive it or show it. Some time circa 2005, Ron's wife had seen the car listed for sale in Hemmings Motor News. It turns out the car was 4 miles from Ron's new home in Mechanicsburg, PA still owned by the guy who bought it in the 80's. He bought the car back and we purchased it from him.
My dad and I have seen and owned a lot of cars in our lives and can honestly say that this one is the most special. I never would have thought that I would own such a cool car. It is a piece of American custom car history that, unlike 99% of the rods out there, hasn't been messed with. The story, the workmanship, and the build book all add to the mystique and makes this car a collectors dream. They are only original once.
It will be the buyers responsibility to pay for and make arraignments for transportation and pickup. A $500 deposit is due within 48hrs after the end of the auction and will be accepted through PayPal or other methods minus credit card. The balance is due within 7 days from the end of the auction and will be accepted in cash, cashiers check, or wire transfer only. Bids from bidders with zero or little feedback will be cancelled unless you contact me and we speak on the phone. Thanks for viewing my auction.