SEMA 2015: 1949 Cadillac Convertible by Ryan’s Rod and Kustom

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Cadillac has always been the top tier automotive brand in the General Motors family. They have the biggest cars, the most powerful engines, and the largest price tags. Their symbolism as a product of quality, prestige, and luxury is known throughout the world. This makes them a popular target for hot rodders, low riders, and other customizers.

This particular Cadillac is a 1949 Convertible and was built by Chris Ryan of Ryan’s Rod & Kustom in Ninety Six, South Carolina. I saw it on display at the 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: 1950 Chevrolet ‘Vanilla Shake’

1950-chevrolet-vanilla-shake-frontWith so many builders in the hot rod world focusing on making rat rods and other rusty-patina-weathered creations, it is refreshing to see a true hot rod. This 1950 Chevrolet coupe belongs to Jerry Logan and was designed and built by Donn Lowe.

This is a hot rod that uses parts from a variety of other cars to enhance its visual appeal. Rather than all-out speed, this car is built for aesthetics with a ton of custom body work and fabrication that really showcases the skill of the builder. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: 1955 Chevrolet Nomad Custom

1955-chevy-nomad-sideNothing says hot rodding like a tri-five Chevy! This beautiful blue ’55 Nomad was on display at SEMA 2014, and it really caught my eye. This car was put together by Salvaggio Auto Design in Port Washington, WI.

This is one big, bold, and blue ride. It features a Chevrolet LS engine from Mercury Racing and a Bowler 4L80E automatic transmission. Continue reading

Hot Rods of Barrett-Jackson 2015

Just take one look at the Barrett-Jackson catalog and you’ll notice that there are plenty of Mustangs, Thunderbirds, Camaros, Corvettes, Chevelles, and Impalas in lovingly restored condition. That’s great if you like mass-produced cars, but does little to tickle the fancy of hot rodders.

If you are of the “built not bought” mindset, you will appreciate the ingenuity of cobbling together a car from whatever parts can be sourced or scavenged. With that in mind, I present 3 awesome hot rods that I saw at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale 2015.

1932 Ford Custom Roadster “Dicey Duce” – Lot #376.1
Sold for $25,300

bja-2015-dicey-duceThe Dicey Duce is exactly what you want in a period-correct hot rod! This 1932 Ford is powered by a Grancor Flathead V8 engine coupled to a Granatelli 3-speed manual gearbox. It has a Grancor intake manifold, MSD ignition, and an electric cooling fan. A few other upgrades make this nice to drive such as a rear coilover suspension, steel braided brake lines, and a dual exit exhaust system with muffler bypass outlets.

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1964 Buick Special 2 Door Wagon

There is something magic about hot-rodded station wagons. They are the automotive equivalent of having your cake and eating it, too! What I mean is, you get the power and performance of a hot rod plus the storage space and practicality of an everyday car. There are no compromises to owning a souped-up wagon.

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1957 Chevy Truck “QuikSilver”

I don’t normally post about trucks, but this one is really something special.

This customized 1957 Chevrolet truck belongs to Alan Beers of Owasso, Oklahoma. When I say customized, I don’t mean that the owner bolted on a couple of go-fast parts and a rollpan. I mean that every body panel on this truck has been altered in some way!

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1956 Buick ‘Nailed’ by Troy Trepanier

One of the premiere builders in the hot rod scene today is Troy Trepanier. From his shop in Manteno, Illinois, Rad Rides by Troy delivers some of the most unique automotive creations on the road today.

I got to check out their 1956 Buick “Nailed” on display at the 2013 SEMA Show and based on the crowd of admirers, I could tell this car was something special. At the risk of sounding cliche, this ain’t your granddaddy’s Buick!

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Scratch-built Ford C-cab

I’ve been following this project for quite some time over at a forum I frequent called Hotrodders.com. Just recently the creator of this machine, Randy, fired up it’s big block Chevy engine for the first time. If you like to spend hours going through an entire build thread, this one is worth your time. The video below goes through it’s creation in a picture slideshow step by step if that’s more your style. Do not miss this!