Larry Purcell's 1941 Ford
1941 Ford Coupe owned and restyled by Larry Purcell of Colorado Springs, Colorado. When Larry decided to finally build a full custom coupe, he wanted to base his build on a 1941 Ford instead of the more popular 1939 - 1940 Fords. Even though Larry ran a custom body shop in the 1950s, he had never chopped a top before he started on this project. A healthy 6 inches were whacked out of the windshield posts and 7 inches were taken out of the back section of the roof. The front fenders were dropped an inch and the rear fenders were reshaped to improve the lines. Both bumpers were removed and the pans rolled for a unified look. Frenched 1954 Mercury headlight rims were grafted on to the front fenders and a pair of 1948 Ford taillights were frenched onto the modified rear fenders. Hood and deck lid were shaved for handle and ornamentation, and the corners on both units were rounded. The center hood seam was filled, the door handles shaved and the side trim shortened. The trunk and doors were operated by micro switches located behind the quarter panels, activated by pressing a knee against the panel. An antenna was sunken into the right front fender. The body was lowered by installing lowering blocks in the rear and by installing a 4 inch dropped Super Bell axle up front. Air shocks were installed on all four corners, making it possible for Larry to adjust the height of the car about 3 inches. Larry retired the old flathead, and replaced it with a 1968 Ford 289 engine from a Mustang that his son Nick had rebuilt. The engine was hooked to a FMX transmission and 1968 Ford Mustang 3.25 rear end. Larry stitched a black rolled and pleated Naugahyde upholstery for the car that he installed along with black Nylon carpeting. The stock steering wheel and column were kept, while the dash was fit with 1948 Mercury instruments. The pedals were taken from a sprint car. Once the bodywork was done, the car was painted in a black nitrocellulose lacquer by Dale Rieck of Kar Kraft Body Shop. 6.00 x 15 Denman wide whitewall bias ply tires were installed along with a set of single flipper bar hubcaps. Flared fenderskirts and dual Appleton spotlights wrapped up the style. Ted Tetman did all of the rust work on the body of the car for Larry. Ted did also perform the plastic work for the horn ring and the spotlight handles. Once completed, Larry had invested $6,500 and more than 7,000 hours on the car, spread over a 2 1/2 years span. Larry's coupe was finished on the 4th of July in 1978.
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