Brad Masterson's 1954 Chevrolet

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Summer of 2013, at the Inglewood Park Cemetery. Photo by Olav Kvipt.
In Dalhart, Texas. Photo by Olav Kvipt.

1954 Chevrolet Pickup beautifully restored by Brad Masterson of Masterson Kustom Automobiles in Lynwood, California. The truck was given to Brad by his neighbor when he was a baby. The neighbor had intensions of using it as a parts car, but he never pulled a part of it. The car was basically put away because of a broken front leaf spring, and a worn out steering box. The car just sat for years and years, until Brad decided to wake the car back to life. Hard times had struck Brad, his girlfriend was recently killed, and he just wanted to give up and die. One day he sat in the field next to the car, throwing rocks at it and thinking about the meaning of life. Suddenly he thought, you can't bring a human being back from the dead, but you can fix a car to get running again. A big tree was actually growing up through the bed of it. A rat had crawled in and died in the valve cover, so he cleaned this out, put fresh fuel in it and fired it up and put the pedal to the metal. It was running really badly, but it could do about 50 mph, so he headed to a washed out bridge, planning to drive it off the edge. Brad changed his mind on his way to the bridge, thinking about all the small things he could fix on the car, such as the cigarette lighter, rattling windshield, glovebox light etc, and how cheap it would be to make it usable again by updating the drivetrain.[1]

He installed a 350 Chevy mill and a 5 speed combined with the stock 3/4 rear axle. This way, the truck could be easily used on the freeways, and pull heavy stuff. He wanted it to appear as and old farmer's truck, that any of his friends could use, so nothing was done to the body. He rebuilt the brakes as well. On the sides, Brad lettered Fair Oaks Sidewalk Surfing Assoc.[1]

In July 2013, a top was made for the bed by Brad, Alex SoRelle, Olav Kvipt, Tadakazu Tadokoro, and Toshimichi Tanaka. The purpose of the top, was to make a home for the japanese while driving back and forth to Salina, Kansas for the KKOA Leadsled Spectacular. Tad, and Toshi of the El Radiall came from Tokio to hang out with Brad at the shop and join the trip to Kansas.The top was done in wood and canvas, and the top was covered with palm. Dre Johansson installed a toolbox on the left running board, and they got really use for that toolbox during the trip to Kansas. The previous white rims were painted yellow as well, to match the letters on the doors.[1]

Pit stop number one was just outside Los Angeles. A buddy of Brad had "fixed" the steering box just before the trip. He only had made it worse, and the car was almost impossible to drive. Dre drove it first, and wanted to turn around, not wanting to risk Olav, Tad, and Toshi's life. Olav went under the truck, and fixed the steering box at a Seven Elleven, and after this, the steering worked perfect. 400 miles later, the fuel pump began quitting. Olav and Dre got some equipment from the local fire department in Bernarillo County, New Mexico to get it fixed. However, they needed gas as well. While searching for gas, two police cars showed up, and the local sheriff, Jeff McGrew contributed with 5 gallons of gas. When the boys finally got the car up and running, they suddenly drove straight into a movie shoot at Zuzax Gas Mart.[1]

The second and last pit stop was 10 miles outside Pratt, Kansas. While Olav was driving, the radio suddenly went wild, blasting the volume to max, and refusing to go down. Dr. Dre was sleeping, and woke up as well. They were going 60mph, but slowed down to fix the radio. This was a good thing they did, because the left front tire blew all of a sudden! Brad drove to town with the tire, and got it replaced.[1]



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