It all began when a friend said he was building a "Rat Rod",After seeing what he had done ( He owns a salvage yard by the way) My son and I decided we would attempt to build one for ourselves.
We didn't ask ourselves "ARE WE SURE WE WANT TO ATTEMPT THIS???? the answer was yes.
We found a n older model Ford Ranger rolling frame that had everything we needed to start We stripped of all of he "Unneeded parts" and on Craig's list we found a "47 ford pickup cab for $150.00 we got it.
Then we found a '55 ford bed we traded for it but it was waaaaaaaaaaaaay too long!!!!!!!!!!! So we narrowed it about 12" and shortened it 18" it fit good. Now we have something that looks like a pick up.
we found a good 351W with a RV cam and small block C6 with shift kit very reasonable $500.00 found Ranger headers then "Shoe horned" the whole thing into the ranger frame made the mounts for engine trans had driveline made bought gauges and made the instrument panel.
Then spent hours and hours with the electrical wiring headlights, tail lights, turn signals, brake lights, it took longer because we bought the terminals and the quick disconnect plugs so we wouldn't have a "Rats nest" for wiring and it eventually all worked"
We had to remove the power steering and go to standard steering because of the way the engine sat in the frame and relocated the oil filter also radiator had to be custom made 3 core from older Mustang.
Steering a whole different "Animal" with some geometry we solved it also and little tough steering until it starts moving then it is ok.
We let the grandkids decide on the color "Smurf blue" with black trim inside the bed and inside the cab then we added Smoothie reversed rims and baby moon caps and 14" tires.
Took it to the Exhaust shop for 21/2" pipe and twin Flow masters exhaust that dumps out just in front of the rear axle it sounded awesome real throaty and deep toned.
Was I worth all of the Frustration? Yes, it was a family project, and when the engine "Fired' for the first time and rolled out of the garage under its own power the feeling of pride of what we had done was enormous Sure it isn't "Perfect" But we built it with our own hands, sweat and little blood too.
We now have 2 more project cars a 1938 4dr Chev which is in progress and a 1955 Ford 2dr wagon also in progress 'We're hooked"
The "Rat is driven every chance we get to shows swap meets and just for the pleasure of driving it, and also father son grand kids experience that we all we remember.