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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

Bill Collins' 1951 Ford 1951 Ford two-door sedan owned by Bill Collins of Dallas, Texas. Bill lived in the Oak Cliff part of Dallas, and he was one of the early hot rodders there in the 1950s. Bill bought the Ford as a stocker, and he restyled and repainted it in the mid-1950s. Clyde Walther's 1940 Ford Convertible 1940 Ford Convertible owned by Clyde Walther of Stockton, California. Clyde bought the car off a used car lot in Stockton about 1953, and it had already been customized when he bought it. Garret Walther's 1940 Ford Coupe 1940 Ford coupe owned by Garret Walther of Stockton, California. The coupe was Garret's first car, and he bought it in 1955.


10.19.2020 - Stickers to the people! We finally have stickers for sale in the Kustomrama Online Store. Black stickers. Red stickers. Yellow stickers. 10.17.2020 - Spence Murray has passed away Yesterday we received the sad news that Spencer "Spence" Murray has left us. One of the last living pioneers of the hot rod and custom movement as we know it today. After eight long years of illness, Spence passed away on October 14 at home with his family around him. 10.08.2020 - Charlie "Chop Top Charlie" Brewer has passed away On October 8, 2020, the custom car scene was saddened by the news that Chop Top Charlie had passed away. Charlie is a well-known Ohio-customizer. Starting out in the 1950s, he is known for building some of the best customs in his part of the country.

Lost and Found

Mystery solved: Von Hunter's 1957 Chevrolet Corvette A week ago, we added Russ Cook's 1957 Chevrolet Corvette custom to the Kustomrama Lost & Found section. A lot has happened since then, and we now know that Russ' Corvette was originally restyled by Von Hunter of Portland, Oregon. Looking for info: Mikael Blomberg's 1932 Ford Roadster 1932 Ford Roadster owned by Mikael Blomberg of Motala, Sweden. Mikael bought the roadster from a fellow known as "Indian Mike" early in 2019. The car was advertised for sale as an authentic drag car from the late 1950s or the early 1960s. Looking for info: Russ Cook's 1957 Chevrolet Corvette 1957 Chevrolet Corvette custom owned by Russ Cook of Lake Oswego, Oregon. According to Russ' grandson, and later owner, Randy Koch the car was modified back in the mid 1960s. Probably in the Portland, Oregon area.

Photo Archive

The Cliff Riehl Collection Cliff Riehl was a member of the Road Lords of So. Cal. car club. He joined the club as a teenager in the 1950s, and helped organize the first, and only, Disneyland Car Club Day and Autocade September 5, 1959. The Greg Palen Collection Greg Palen grew up in Livingston, New Jersey. In the early 1960s, he rode his bike to the local shops to watch them build customs. Korky's Kustoms for example. That was one of the shops on his regular route. 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.


Don Kilby's 1951 Ford Victoria - The Slick Vic 1951 Ford Victoria owned and restyled by Don Kilby of Kensington, Maryland. While Kilby owned the car, it was featured in Customs Illustrated September 1963, and it became known as the "Slick Vic." For Sale: Ron Price's 1933 Ford 3-Window Coupe Unique 1961 Grand National Roadster Show winner and one of the few original surviving examples of Ed Roth's paint and pinstriping. For Sale: Richard Howard's 1954 Mercury Monterey 1954 Mercury Monterey owned by Richard Howard of Raleigh, North Carolina. Known as the 50's Legend, Richard's Merc has been featured in several magazines and it is the winner of many awards, including Best Paint at the World of Wheels.

Guides, Reviews & Recommendations

Bias Ply vs. Radial Tires - Are radials really RADIOACTIVE? Are radials really RADIOACTIVE? Are you rolling around confused? Check out our latest guide, and you'll hopefully end up with more answers than questions. Kustomrama Tire Buyer's Guide: Firestone 5.60-15 Tires Much more than just frontrunners for your hot rod. Show & Go - Kustomrama's Guide to the Cragar S/S Wheel BOOM! In 1964 the Cragar S/S rocket thundered off from the headquarters of Bell Auto Parts in Southern California. It was a major blast, and nobody knew back then how long the mission would last. A year, a season, or maybe a decade?

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

Disneyland Car Club Day and Autocade The Disneyland Car Club Day and Autocade was a car show held on September 5, 1959, by the Road Lords of So. Cal. car club. It was a spectacular one-day event that took place at Holidayland in Disneyland in Anaheim, California. The show was promoted as an annual show but was only held once. Gold Coast Reliability Run 2019 The Gold Coast Reliability Run is an annual event held in Queensland, Australia. The event is open for pre-1940 hot rods. Traditional style only. Most of the cars are Flathead powered, and it is capped at 30. Ozark Drifters Auto-Rama 1962 The Ozark Drifters Car Club Auto-Rama was an indoor car show sponsored by the Ozark Drifters car club. Sanctioned by the National Hot Rod Association, the first annual show was held at the National Guard Armory in Springdale in December of 1962.

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.

Kustomrama Styling Studio

1950 Ford Custom - Bongo Date 1950 Ford Coupe designed by Howard "The Weird Rembrandt" Gribble. Gribble drew this custom sometime around 1959, as a high school freshman. At the time he was busy restyling his own 1950 Ford, and this design shows what kind of ideas he had planned for the car. Panel Painted 1950 Ford Custom 1950 Ford Coupe designed by Doyle Bidwell. Bidwell drew this custom sometime around 1959, as a high school freshman. At the time he was busy restyling his own 1950 Ford Coupe, and this design shows what kind of ideas he had planned for the car. 1941 Lincoln Zephyr Convertible Custom Janne Kutja has been down in his archive again and found a design he drew back in 2006. This concept is based on a 1941 Lincoln Zephyr convertible. Main modifications include a chopped and leaned back windshield and a padded top.

Recommended Reading

What we're reading now: Middletown Pacemakers: The Story of an Ohio Hot Rod Club Author Ron Roberson is a third-generation Middletown Pacemaker member. His father and grandfather were founding members of the club, and Ron has been attending club meetings as long as he can remember. Ron became the youngest member of the club, and he hung around until it disbanded when he was 16. Recommended: 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.


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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