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Kustomrama is an encyclopedia dedicated to traditional hot rod and custom cars. Our mission is to keep history alive by protecting, preserving and sharing hot rod and custom car history from all over the world. More info...


Featured Stories

Roger Miret's 1954 Chevrolet - Morphine Roger Miret doesn't do things halfway. In 2010, after conquering the world with his band Agnostic Front, the godfather of hardcore set out to build what would eventually become his first full-fledged show car. Bill Cole's 1941 Ford 4 Door Sedan 1941 Ford 4 Door Sedan owned by Bill Cole of Redlands, California. Bill was a member of the Strokers of Whittier car club, and he lived in Whittier before he moved to Redlands. Teddy Zgrzemski' 1957 Chevrolet Nomad Receiving hydraulic lifts by Teddy's uncle, Bill Hines, back in 1964 or 65, the Nomad is believed to be the first lifted car of Michigan.

News

01.15.2020 - Frank De Rosa has passed away We just received the sad news that legendary Northern California customizer Frank De Rosa passed away today. 92 years old, Frank was a pioneer in the field, starting out customizing cars in Pittsburg, California, in 1943. A driving force and an inspiration for many of us. A sad day in custom car history. 01.10.2020 - The reserve was not met for the Aztec at the Kissimmee 2020 auction Friday, January 10, 2020 the Aztec crossed the block at Mecum Auctions Kissimmee 2020 auction in Kissimmee, Florida. The old Barris Kustom was one of the main attractions during the event, and it was estimated to bring in between $350,000 - $450,000. 11.15.2019 - Forey Wall has passed away We are very sorry to inform you that Forey Wall passed away yesterday morning on the day of his 106th birthday. Born in South Dakota, Glen and Forey started messing around with cars back in the 1920s.

Lost and Found

Found: Martin S. Papazian's Cordster A 20 year-long hunt is over, and the Cordster is now finally back in the Papazian family again. Found: George Contaoi's 1941 Mercury Coupe This long lost San Bernardino, California custom has been hidden since 1967. That was until the current caretaker retired and decided to start working on cars he bough 50 years ago. Lost: The John Toohey Hot Rods "Where are they now? John F. Toohey Sr. of Eugene, Oregon, was an enthusiastic and self-taught Northwest hot rodder that began building show cars in the mid-1960s. Passing away from a fatal heart attack in 1971, John had a short but productive career, turning out almost one hot rod a year.

Photo Archive

The Charlie Grantham Collection Charlie Grantham grew up in Los Angeles and went to Polytechnic High School. His family moved to San Bernardino, where Charlie became a member of the SCTA Road Runners while he was competing at the dry lakes. Unfortunately, Charlie has passed away, but thanks to his cousin Chuck Edwall, many of his photos have found their way to the Kustomrama Photo Archive. The Willard McPhatter Jr. Collection Willard McPhatter Jr. took these photos at the Charlotte Coliseum Car Show in 1965. Willard is Cory Vaughn's uncle, and the Charlotte Coliseum Car Show, is the first show he and his brother ever attended. The Bill Boren Collection Bill Boren was an active member of the Culver City Screwdrivers in the 1940s and the 1950s. He and Jerry Keldrauk were a regular sight at the dry lakes with their track nosed 1932 Ford Sedan. Unfortunately Bill passed away in September of 2014, but his memory lives on on Kustomrama as his daughter Karen has scanned and shared his old albums with us.

Marketplace

For Sale: Bill Carr's 1955 Chevrolet - The Aztec Your chance to own an important piece of custom history. Barry Mazza, who has been the caretaker of what many consider as one of the greatest Barris Kustoms of em all, has decided to part with the iconic custom. For Sale: Ron Maxwell's 1934 Ford Coupe 1934 Ford 5-Window Coupe originally owned and built by Ron Maxwell of Salt Lake City, Utah. Ron started the build in 1954. It ran under flathead and later Cadillac power, competing in B/Altered at strips around Utah. For Sale: Bob Betz's 1954 Chevrolet Bel-Air A beautiful custom with a 2 inch chopped top, one-piece hood, frenched headlights and taillights, custom interior, 1957 Cadillac hubcaps, Custom Bloomers skirts, and much more. 235 6 cylinder engine, 3-speed column shift, Jamco suspension.

Guides, Reviews & Recommendations

From Strip to Street - Kustomrama's Guide to American Racing Torq-Thrust Wheels The American Racing Torq-Thrust Mag Wheel is by many considered to be the most famous and recognizable wheel of all time. It started as an idea, and a need for a wheel that would give less weight, with strength and the cooling ability for race cars. Kustomrama Tire Buyer's Guide: Firestone 6.70-15 Tires Wheels, tires, and stance are three of the most important components of any car. Wheels can make or break any build. Bias-ply tires are a must if you want to build a period-correct traditional 1940s or 1950s hot rod or custom, and the Firestone 6.70-15 tire is a popular tire amongst traditionalists. Keep the Tradition and Traction Alive - Kustomrama's Guide to Buying Nostalgia Slicks Nostalgia slicks are very popular these days, and we see them on everything from vintage dragsters, hot rods, gassers, and even nostalgic street cars. They do work fairly well on the street, as long as you don’t try to drive on a rainy day.

Top Lists

Matt Townsend ranks the 3 greatest 1949-51 Mercury customs of all time Matt Townsend runs Townsends Customs & Hot Rods, a custom body shop in Riverside, California that specializes in restoration and customization of classic cars. In November of 2017 Matt had 17 1949 - 1951 Mercury customs under his belt, so we asked him what his All-Time Top 3 1949 - 1951 Mercury Customs are. Kevan Sledge ranks the 3 greatest customs of all time Kevan Sledge is a founding member of the So. Cal Shifters car club. Kevan has had a passion for cars since he was a young kid, and began building hot rods and customs as a hobby in the late 1980s. In 2011 he started up Sledge Customs, turning his hobby into a full time profession. Gene Winfield ranks his top 3 favorite builds Gene Winfield is a legendary customizer, painter and hot rod racer. Born June 16, 1927, Gene has been restyling cars since 1945, and he is one of the best known and most recognized builders in the world. They say choosing your favourite build is like choosing your favourite child! We Gene what his top 3 favourite builds are?

Featured Events

Motorama 75 Motorama 75 was an indoor car show held at Nidarøhallen in Trondheim, Norway. Also known as the Motormesseshow, the show was held April 24-27, 1975. Sacramento Autorama 2020 The 70th annual Sacramento Autorama was held February 14-16, 2020 at the Cal Expo in Sacramento, California. Visitors reported that the show had a great variety of cars, both indoors and out, and the promoter's staff could confirm that the crowd visiting this year's show was larger than usual. Grand National Roadster Show 2020 The 71st annual Grand National Roadster Show was held January 24 - 26, 2020 at the Fairplex in Pomona, California. A showcase of recently completed hot rods and customs, the show did also include some important survivor cars such as Jerry Anolik's Moon Rocket and Jim Seaton's 1955 Chevrolet.

Featured Projects

Lawrence Garrison's 1940 Mercury Convertible In 2011 Birger Meland of Lier, Norway bought Lawrence Garrison’s channeled 1940 Mercury from Pat Orosco in California. For a long time, the history of this old custom has been full of holes and rumors. In June Birger told us that he wanted to restore the car back to how it was originally built. We applauded the initiative and agreed to help him research the history of the car. Gil Ayala's 1955 Ford Thunderbird - The Wild Bird Gil Ayala's personal custom, a 1955 Ford Thunderbird, known as the Wild Bird, has been sold to Scandinavia. Gil's Thunderbird is one of the few known surviving Ayala Customs, and it is a great addition to the Scandinavian custom scene. The restoration. We followed the restoration of the car, and it's trip halfway across the world on Kustomrama. The Kustomrama Dream truck The Kustomrama Dream Truck is a tribute to the custom cars of the late 1950s. Being an admirer of Jerry DeVito's wildly restyled 1957 Ford Fairlane, that we all know as the Maze, Sondre Kvipt decided that he wanted to recreate this car as a Ranchero. The build was started in Oslo, Norway in January of 2014, lead by Sondre's brother Olav.


Recommended Reading

What we're reading now: GO with MOON! - 1950-2010 GO with MOON! - 1950-2010 is a full-color book filled with photos from the Moon archive. The journey starts in New Richland, Minnesota, and we get a little glimpse of Dean's life prior to moving to California in 1934. Recommended: Iacocca: An Autobiography The father of the Ford Mustang tells us how he changed the automobile industry in the 1960s and how he went on to save Chrysler. Recommended: Cool Cars, High Art: The Rise of Kustom Kulture John DeWitt grew up in Stamford, Connecticut in the 1950s, and like so many other teenagers back then, he would start getting ready for Friday nights early in the afternoon; "I would pull my car into the driveway, turn on the radio, get the soap and polish ready, and turn on the hose. I attended to the hygiene of my car with an attention to detail I never applied to my room."

Misc

Featured Video: The 1957 Norwalk Motorcade A movie by Bob Stephenson from the 4th annual Norwalk Motorcade, an outdoor car show sponsored by the Norwalk Coachmen car club. Keith Christensen was the first President of the club and a founding member. Featured Video: AutopiaLA: Jerry Moffatt's 1939 Ford Los Angeles Custom Shawn Davis of AutotopiaLA takes the historic Jerry Moffatt's 1939 Ford Convertible for a spin. Featured Video: Warren Dorrill's Shark - 8MM Home Video 1949 Ford Club Coupe owned and restyled by Warren Dorrill of Gallup, New Mexico. Warren was a well-known bodyman and painter, and his 1949 Ford custom was known as "The Shark." Filmed back in the 1950s, this 8mm video comes from the collection of Warren's family.




 

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