Raymond Patricco's 1934 Ford
Ray bought the car in 1957. He was 15 years old when he got it, and it had already been mildly customized, featuring a canvas top, a V'd windshield, custom front fenders, shaved gas filler, custom running boards, and headlights.
Fogged panel paint and pinstriping
Patricco decided to upgrade the appearance of the car, so he tore it down and gave it a two-tone green panel paint job fogged in gold with white pinstriped outlines. He never completed the build, and it went into storage in the 1960s or the 1970s.
Time capsule barnfind
The in-progress build stayed in storage until Patricco passed away in May of 2018. In September of 2019, Blair McClure of Pemberton, New Jersey, came across an ad for the car on Craigslist. Located in Whitehouse, New Jersey, it was listed as a 1934 Ford Convertible, "No pictures and a very vaguely worded ad saying that it "needed restoration" and "will be a fun car when done"," Blair's friend George Gudat of Green Island, New Jersey told Sondre Kvipt of Kustomrama in 2019. Gudat and McClure are partners in the car. "Not much to go by, but my friend called and got som dimly lit pics of the car in an old barn that were difficult to see what he had." He showed the photos to George, who couldn't believe what he was seeing; "A total time capsule custom hot rod that appears to be done in the early 60s!" After seeing the photos, Gudat and McClure decided to buy the survivor. The seller told them he had bought the car from Patricco's estate.
When Gudat and McClure bought the car, it still featured the custom paint job that Patricco had given the car five decades earlier. "There are also lots of white pinstriped accents throughout the car," George told Kustomrama. It had custom front fenders that were rounded off to meet the lower cowl. The rocker panels were removed and the lower cowl and quarters were modified to match. There used to be custom running boards attached to the frame, just below the door, these were gone when George bought the car, but the brackets remained. The stock gas tank had been moved inside the trunk, and the rear pan had the gas tank hole filled in. The cowl vent had been filled, and the cowl was shaved where the stock windshield stanchions and cowl lights would have been. Outside, the door handles were shaved, and it was dressed up with Guide 904A headlights and 1939 Ford taillights. The grille had a custom mesh inset of unknown origin. The interior was done in green mint with fitted carpets and custom panels throughout. It ran a custom dash with vintage Stewart-Warner gauges. A radio was mounted underneath the rear package tray.
"Currently it has a 322 Buick Nailhead in it but it appears the conversion was never completed," George told Kustomrama. A 1939 Ford transmission and a stock rear end completed the driveline. Hydraulic brakes had been added with a firewall mounted master cylinder and a custom brake pedal assembly made from a 1940 Ford pedal setup. In October of 2019 Gudat and McClure planned to get the car mechanically sound so it could be driven. "We're told the Buick Nailhead runs, but I haven't tried to get it running yet. There's a bunch of little things that appear to be unfinished. Wiring is one. None of the lights are wired and no switch. The seats were never bolted down and there are no holes in the carpets where they could've been. Throttle linkage is a piece of wire. .In my opinion, the Buick engine swap and possibly its conversion to its current state may have never been completed! "
When Gudat and McClure bought the car they were told that the car was originally built in the 1950s, and at the time it was black or dark-colored, flathead powered and ran a DuVall Windshield. "To support this detail, the 34 had an old black canvas top in the trunk with wooden bows, and guess what else? A "V" shaped wooden header that would have fit on a DuVall Windshield!" Closer inspection of the underside of the cowl showed holes where the DuVall would have been attached. The previous owner told Gudat that he looked for the DuVall Windshield, but never found it. George was able to track down Ray's wife Elaine, and she could provide an old photo and fill in a little bit about the history of the car.
Do you recognize the car?
Gudat and McClure are currently researching the history of the car, trying to find out who originally built it, and when. Please get in touch with Kustomrama at firstname.lastname@example.org if you recognize it and can help us fill in its history.
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