Kelly & Mark Skipper's 1951 Ford
1951 Ford Victoria restyled by President of the Royal Shifters Car Club in Fresno, California, Mark Skipper for his wife, Kelly Skipper. Mark bought the Victoria from Andrew Severin, the car was his Dads, Carl Severins car. Carl passed away in 2007, and in may 2010 Andrew confronted Mark to buy the car. A deal was made, and he told Andrew that he was going to customize the car, lower it, chop the top, two tone paint, white interior pleats etc. Mark asked Andrew for permission, and he answered with: "the car could not be in better hands, those are the things my Dad dreamed of doing."
Mark's plan was to restyle the car with minor body alteration, but a haircut was needed. Mark chopped the top and replaced the Victoria rear window with a 1950 Ford coupe window. Up front, grille teeth from a 1954 Chevrolet was installed, however, these were later replaced with 9 1953 Chevrolet teeth. The car was nosed and decked to achieve a cleaner appearance. Lincoln push buttons were installed in favor of the stock door handles. The headlights were frenched, and the 1951 Ford taillights were swapped for a set of 1949 - 1950 Ford units. The stock sidetrim was removed, and Mark got hold of a 1954 Dodge 2-door trim that he modified to fit the car.
The car was ment to be for his wife to cruise around with, so Mark had Tim McMaster to build and balance a Chevy 350 engine. His wife trimmed the engine after her desire, so she picked the manifold, carbs, and a set of Corvette valve covers. The engine was hooked to a rebuilt 700R4 transmission that was acquired from Roger Scott. The eight inch rearend was fit with 3.00 gears to give a pleasuring ride, even at high speeds.
The front drum brakes were improved with disc brakes for safeties sake. The frame was notched in the rear, and the car was lowered to a perfect period 1950s stance. The trunk floor was cut out, and Mark fabricated a new one and installed a 1970 Mustang 20 gallon tank instead of the stock 18.
A 1951 Ford automatic column was installed, a perfect fit against the 1951 Lincoln steering wheel. The dashboard and window moldings were sent to New Age Chrome in Fresno to get plated. Eduardo's Upholstery in Fresno was responsible for stitching up the interior. The dash was painted by Rob Tayler of Clovis. John Coleman did the wiring, converting the car to an 12V electric system.
Marty LeBar of Marty's Hot Rods of Fresno replaced the rockers and the lower front portion of the rear and front fenders. Once this was done, Marty, Jack and Ross Stemple went away doing all the bodywork and finishing it off in a two tone paint job consisting of Alpha Romeo metallic gold pearl and Chrysler 300 cool vanilla. And in the summer of 2012, the car was finally painted.
The car made its debut at the 2013 Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California, where it came 3rd in the radical hardtop class. The car also won at the Lonestar Roundup in Austin, winning "The Continental Pick", "Best of show" and "Mothers Polish Best of Show Pick". Later on the same year it also won Top 5 wild Kustom award, and Kustoms Illustrated editors award at the West Coast Kustoms Santa Maria show.
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