We’re excited to announce that the freshly printed Rodder’s Journal #73 will be heading to subscribers in the next week or so. This issue, both the subscriber and newsstand covers feature a supercharged, 525-horsepower 1957 Oldsmobile engine photographed in our studio. On the back cover, we showcase the “Long Beach Legend” 1936 Ford roadster during the golden hour. (Even though both covers feature the blown Olds engine, the subscriber cover—cover A—comes without a barcode or blurbs for a slightly cleaner look.)
Inside, TRJ #73 is loaded with hot rods, customs and stories from coast-to-coast and beyond. In fact, we photographed cars everywhere from the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee to the Hawaiian island of Lanai. From a chopped, big block Chevy-powered ’33 Ford to an East Coast custom survivor, there’s no shortage of exciting material dating back more than half a century. Gassers, roadsters, reliability runs, artist profiles, you name it—you’ll find it all in the newest Rodder’s Journal.
There’s more to Jeff Romig’s Three Rivers, Michigan-based ’36 Ford roadster than meets the eye. Initially, he planned to build a modern, high-power hot rod with his seemingly solid West Coast original. After discovering that it was far rougher than expected, he worked with the team at Hollywood Hot Rods in Burbank, California, to create the “Long Beach Legend.” Highlights include Lincoln flathead V-12 power and a number of Lincoln-Zephyr influences.
Hot Rods & Rock ‘N’ Roll
Jeff Beck is a world-class guitarist and a diehard hot rodder. He recently combined his two passions, cars and music, in a new hardbound book Beck01. In TRJ #73, we take an inside look at Beck’s hot rod collection—including his stable of Deuces—and throw in a few anecdotes from his career for good measure. We found his tail of buying the Dick Patterson Model A coupe from a Ford dealer in San Francisco during an early tour particularly interesting.
One for the Diehards
Gary Minor first caught a glimpse of Jack Peed’s Chevy custom at the Ram Rods’ car show at the National Guard Armory in Washington D.C. back in 1962. Then just seventeen years old, Gary couldn’t have imagined that more than a half century later he would own the very same 1950 Chevrolet. It was originally built by Sonny Daout, who did the extensive bodywork. Although it has been through several powerplants including the original inline-six and a Buick nailhead and several paint jobs the custom retains many of its signature features that garnered Gary’s attention all those years ago including the chopped hardtop-style roof, ’54 Buick sidetrim and a ’54 Chevy grille.
Los Angeles resident Chuck Gage is the current custodian of this very traditional ’28 Model A roadster pickup, but its history can be traced back to the immediate post-war period. It was originally constructed by a group of guys from Glendale that were members of the Trompers, an SCTA club. In fact, Chuck’s uncle was among this group. We were pleased to learn of the Model A’s history, but ere initially drawn to its traditional look. Full-fendered Model A’s have long been among our favorites and this one with its Deuce grille shell, wide whites old-style baby moons and a properly dressed flathead is just right.
The Jimmy Hatch ’34 Ford coupe has history as well, but from a different time and place. With its four-inch chop and big block Chevy engine it was considered to be the coolest coupe at the drive-in when started making appearances at a Maryland cruise night held at the Capital Plaza Hot Shoppes back in the mid-‘70s. The coupe has gone through several owners and has had its share of up-dates, but it still retains much of the hot-rod charm that Jimmy Hatch infused decades ago.
Pit Pass Polaroids
As a teenager growing up in Ohio during the mid-‘60s Dan Fuller had a front row seat to the burgeoning drag race scene in the eastern half of the country. We have long been fans of the hot rods Dan now builds. His latest Doane Spencer-style Deuce is particularly nice. But when you listen to him reminence as he looks through the photos he took as kid at the drags you can tell his first love is drag racing from the Gasser era. We show case some of his (and our) favorite images and chronicle his adventures, which included a trip to the Super Stock Nationals with the fabled Ramchargers team back in 1966.
Drawing the Line
We first became aware of Chris Picitelli’s artwork through the series of blueprint-style renderings he has done depicting both rods and customs. As we delved deeper into his work we realized that this is just one of a plethora of hot rod art styles he has mastered. We are enamored with his loose line drawing sketches as much as we are his full finished renderings. We felt his artwork deserved a deeper look in the magazine.
Parts is Parts
We expanded our Parts is Parts feature this issue to do justice to the beautiful blown Olds engine that was built by Tony Lombardi, proprietor of Ross Racing Engines in Niles, Ohio. Tony and his father Ross, who founded the business decades ago, are known for turning out traditionally styled powerplants that as powerful as they are good looking. The blown Olds that they turn typically make more than 500 streetable horsepower and are nothing short of automotive jewelry. We take a look at the engine as well as the parts and procedures that that go into these high horsepower nostalgia engines.