1957 Buick Special Rivera With its innovative styling, this 1957 Buick Special Riviera became one of General Motors crown jewels. This 2-door hard top model 46R has a 122 inch wheelbase and a 250 bhp nail V-8 to power it. The body lines were longer and lower than previous years. Reliability was considered excellent and featured better gas mileage than the '56. The body is very quite with great attention given to the interior design details including comfort and convenience for driver and passenger alike.
When Gary purchased this car in 1986, it was sitting on a K-Mart parking lot for sale. He drove the car as-is for two years before putting it in storage for the next 14 years.
Wives being what wives are, they have a way of making a point. Gary wanted to buy another car. Patti agreed, but with the stipulation that he had to complete the Buick. Note: Gary's newer car is still unfinished. The Buick, although in fair condition, needed restoration. American Auto Body did the body and paint. Gary had the skills to do the interior by himself. A friend Clark Elliot, rebuilt his nail head engine. All-in-all, the restoration took a mere two years to complete. The black paint has a heavy pearl, which shows off very in the bright sunlight. It sold new for $2,704 and was one of 64,425 manufactured during the '57 model year.
Gary & Patti Ugrin Billings, Montana
1967 Chevrolet Corvette You've probably heard the one about the 'Vette found in a barn ... yep, that's the story with this gem. When John & Ann purchased this 'Vette in 2006, they became the fourth owner. There was still a speeding ticket in the glove box from 1974.
This 1967 split window coupe is a true survivor with all matching numbers, a 327 cid, 350 bhp engine with an M21 4-speed transmission and a 3:70 Positraction rear end. The paint code is 988 -- Marlboro Maroon with a black leather interior. the starbust aluminum wheels were an option, made for only one year to accommodate the new wider tires used for this years Corvette.
John added some safety features such as power steering and brakes and spiced it up with an impeccable paint job by Rimrock Collision Center of Billings, MT
The 1967 Corvette became a car that never should have been built. Chevrolet had plans for an entirely new body, which got delayed by a year. The new body did appear on the 1968 model. This delay resulted in the '67 being regarded as a premium collector ca among sports car enthusiasts. Most of the emblems were left off of the '67, which made it the most appealing and sleek of all the Sting ray bodies.many of those who opted to wait for the 1968 model regretted their decision later on as the '67 became regarded as one of the "best of the best." The GM Mark of Excellence appeared only on the '67 Vett's door jamb and was exclusive to this model year. John & Ann Peycke Billings, Montana
1966 Mustang Convertible This car was purchased in Glendale, Arizona, in 2007. The 55 year old grandmother who owned it referred to her Mustang as "Sally." She mentioned that her little "girl" was kind of shy, but once she was out in the sunlight with the top down, she warmed to everyone. "Mustang Sally" had plenty of sunshine living in Arizona.
This car is an original C code with a balanced 289 cid V-8, C-4 Cruisematic with a 2:80.1 posi traction rear end. It was professionally restored by Chandler Auto Body Restorations of Chandler, Arizona. It has a Pony interior, factory air and allow street wheels.The dual Valance Trumpet exhaust tips provide a mellow tone to the pipes. With the GT package, it has firmer suspension, power front disc brakes and a wood trimed steering wheel. There were 72,119 convertibles made in 1966, with a total Mustang production of 197,190. The show room price was $2,653 ... or about a buck a pound. In 1966 the median age buyer for the Mustang was 31 as compared to 42 for the full sized cars. Craig & Karen Swenson, Billings, Montana
1955 Chevrolet half Ton Pickup Chevrolet pickups were at the top of their game when they made the '55 Chevy Half Ton. Its styling was innovative with the first wrap-around windshield in the industry. There were many features for the '55 like the egg crate grill and the unique hoods that covered the headlights. Visibility was enhanced with a full size rear window that was also a trend setter. New creature comforts included power brakes, a key start ignition complete with a 12-volt electrical system. Dennis purchased this Chevy in 1993 in very good condition. He was, however, not totally satisfied by it and began his own customizations. He started with a frame off restoration. He added a 350 cid small block, a Camaro 3-speed with a Camaro differential. Jim Vannoten did the body work and the very talented Kevin VanLaarhoven added the masterful ghost flames. Both men are from Billings, Montana.
The tombstone in front of the "Hot Rod Garage" serves as a testament to "Friends Building Hot Rods." Three good friends, Ed Jensen, Terry McConnell & Dennis Kaercher are in the process of building a '67 Camaro 502, a '55 Chevy Convertible 502 and a 1930 Chevy delivery van. This 6000 square foot garage was built by Dennis and his friends. it has an 1800 sq. foot luxury home at one end, complete with a pool side hot tub, which is great for parties and invitational car shows. Dennis Kaercher, Billings, Montana
1951 Ford Woody Country Squire The 1951 Ford Woody Country Squire will forever be remembered form the films made on Malibu Beach --- a surf board strapped to the top or hanging out the tail gate. The mystique of that era is still fresh in our minds when we see one of these beauties driving down the road. The Country Squire had very low production numbers (29,017), making them highly collectible today. Most are found in museums. The automatic transmissions were called a "Ford-O-Matic," and cost an additional $159. New for Ford was the Safety Glow Control panel with "Chanalited" instruments and recessed dash controls. This car recently went through a frame-off rotisserie restoration in California. As an homage to its surfing' history, this car features a unique surf board inside mirror and a few other amenities; Tan leather interior, bucket seats, 460 ci Ford engine, louvered hood, 10 inch front disc brakes, 9 inch rear end, maple frames, panels, 3-speed "Ford-O-matic" power steering, air conditioning, smooth fire wall, mahogany wood doors.
Also new wood on the wooden tail gate and a signed outside mirror complete this restoration done by Heiden Woodworking of Southern California. Milton & Rebecca Nickel Polson, Montana
1973 Pontiac Firebird Formula 400 The previous owner decided to take this Firebird Formula 400 apart, then he lost interest in the project. After a ten to twelve year hiatus, he probably forgot how it went back together. It was literally was packed into boxes. Nathan had always loved the '73 Firebirds and vowed to own one someday.
As a Master body & paint specialist, Nathan had a perty good idea of what needed to be done. After many long hours -- and the help of a friendly neighborhood banker-- Nathan built the car. It took him one grueling year.
This black beauty runs down the road as smooth as it looks. Of course it is helped down the road with a 400 ci block, a Tremec 5 speed transmission and a 3.08 differential. Nathan did all the body work and paint by himself. This award winner is a true testament to his skills and abilities.
These cars have a great history. John "The Duke" Wayne used a car like this to shoot McQ. This film put the Firebird through its paces chasing the bad guys. The Formula 400 gives the impression it's a fast car even while its parked. Only 10,166 were ever made and they sold for $3,276.00 Nathan Hale Bozeman, Montana
The Tank Car The man who owns this car refers to it as his "Outrageous Hot Rod." Randy Grubb originally built the car for a friend. It was crude by most standards and needed work done in all areas. This was a project with potential beyond what any man could ever wish for. Its fate was placed in the hands of a trusted and talented friend, Bernard Juchli, who has built many winning race cars throughout his illustrious career.
The guts of this car comes from a 2,100 pound, AV-790-5B tank engine originally designed for a M-47 Patton tank. This V-12 engine cranks out 810 horse (equivalent to approximately five 350 cid Chevy engines). Juchli installed an Allison 6-speed transmission geared to generate 800-900 rpms at 80 mph. The torque on this beast is monstrous ... more than 1,500 ft-lbs requiring heavy-duty torsion bars to prevent the body from twisting upon acceleration. They also added a new electrical system and massive brakes to rein this beast in. This air-cooled, 16 foot long, 10,000 pound machine is truly the ultimate hot rod ! The man pictured with Jay is none other than David North of Billings, Montana who designed the world famous "Toronado." Jay Leno, Car Guy
1961 Chevrolet Impala Finding a piece of junk. That's how Don Myers described this restoration project. With his knowledge of body work, Don was able to restore this '61 Impala in just two short years.
The restoration included a 350 crate engine coupled with a 3 speed overdrive, which makes for some great fuel economy.
A masterful paint job by Ron Henly and stunning interior work by Carol's Upholstery has made this an award winning show car. A rare bowtie hood release located just above the front license plate adds a special touch.
The Myers limit the amount of miles put on this beauty each year. They travel about 300 miles per year attending shows. it will never be in danger of becoming a "trailer queen." Don wanted a driver, something he and his wife could enjoy. Their delicate handling is sure to keep this car in showroom condition for years to come.
The bubble top Chevrolet is popular partly because its smooth lines give it both style and grace.
The car added a few inches and pounds beginning with the 1959 models. They were seven inches wider and about 300 pounds heavier than their predecessor. In 1961, the Impala's styling went in a new direction under the leadership of William L. Mitchell who replaced the retiring Harley Earl in 1958. Don & Georganne Myers Billings, Montana
1947 Nash Coupe The Nash automobile has had a very colorful past beginning with its debut in 1918. A man known as "Crusty" Charles W. Nash was president of General Motors, when he retired to build his own car, the Nash. The company he purchased in Kenosha, Wisconsin, produced a lackluster car called "Jeffory."
During 1947, there were 101,000 cars made. The Nash was the 10th in the nation. Profits were considered high. The decision was made to drop the 8 cylinder and concentrate on their proven 6 cylinder engine. George Mason, Nash's successor, knew a merger was the only way to guarantee their survival. Companies mentioned for merger were Hudson, Studebaker and Packard ... all now relegated to history and kept alive through restoration.
Dale's acquisition of this car was pure serendipity ... Dale had land for sale and a man had this Nash. The swap was completed in 2007 making both men very happy. The restoration was accomplished using a chassis, engine, transmission and rear end from a 1965 Rambler Station Wagon. Frank Momenson of Sheridan, Wyoming, did the conversion including body, paint, upholstery and mechanical. New, this car sold for $1,415. Dale Milligan Columbus, Montana
1967 Ford Galaxie XL A couple of years after Sandy and Roy got married, they bought a '68 Galaxy XL GT 428 cid, 4 - speed, white interior with bucket seats and a console. The car was all red with a gold stripe at midline -- full length. It is a gorgeous car and fun to drive. They kept it until the twins were born and then, with three girls in tow they jumped into life.
Looking ahead in time when their kids were on their own, they got to thinking how fun it would be to have a car like that again. Many sales and shows later, they came across this car at a weekly Saturday McDonalds Car Show (billed as the longest continuous weekly car show in the nation) in Scottsdale, Arizona. They looked at the car and thought it wasn't quite what they wanted (a '67, not a '68) and left. A few miles down the road, they looked at each other and decided they better go back and get serious! IT WAS GONE.!
The following Saturday, they returned to the show on the chance the car might be there again. IT WAS! After looking at the car again and getting as much info from the sellers they could, they told him they wanted to look at it in the daylight and if it looked as good as it does at night, they would take the car. It did and they did.
Their car was purchased new July,1967 in Winsted, Connecticut, and was passed to a son in Alanta, Georgia. It was then purchased by a collector in Phoenix who specialized in Fleetwood cadillacs (his parents had a Galaxie XL exactly like it) and they were in the right place at the right time when he ran out of space.
They got a lot of enjoyment from showing the car. Most people just look and then walk on. From time to time, however, it registers with someone that less than 1000 miles per year of it's life and is completely original with the exception of the top of one fender that had to be repainted due to an unfortunate incident with battery acid.
They have received many trophies, but the one they liked the most is the one they received from the Sports Depot Cruise in Manhattan, Montana. Of all the cars in the show, it was chosen "most likely to experience a romatic encounter." Roy thought Sandy might be upset about this, however her and her girl friends keep wanting to take the car out for the evening.....hmmmmmmmm
There were only 18,174 manufactured. They sold for $3,243 new and weighed in at 3,594 pounds. Roy R. & Sandra Rose Livingston, Montana
1970 1/2 Chevrolet Z 28 Camaro Beauty and the Beast best describes this muscle car of the '70s. Scott found this car in 1998 on a back street in Laurel, Montana. This is the 17th, 1962 to 1970 Camaro Scott has restored. The comical part is that he is a Lincoln automobile dealer, which makes his friends ponder his magical attraction to the Camaro. he simply replies, as so many of have before, "it's just an old love affair."
Every Wednesday evening for the past 16 years, you can find Scott working on a Camaro restoration. A lot of close friendships have evolved around the barbecues hosted on Restoration Wednesday's. They have chewed up tons of ribs -- and scraped a few knuckles -- all in the interest of the Camaro and camaraderie.
A close friend, Jimm Greer, did the body, paint and upholstery. The Z28 has matching numbers with an LT-1 350 cid engine producing 360 bhp. The transmission is a M-21 4-speed with a 12 bolt Positraction rear end. the ultimate sports car for GM was the Camaro Z28. Production figures reached 112,323 and the list price was just under $2,900.00 The car had a curb weight of around 3,190 pounds. Scott & Marcie Smith Billings, Montana
1967 Chevrolet Chevelle SS GM produced just 63,006 of the 1967 Chevelle Super Sport (SS) muscle cars, creating a legacy that carries on to this day. Chevrolet marketing coined the phrase "quick size" when they referred to the Chevelle. Its handling ability made it nimble in the corners and it would stop on a dime, as they say. The 396 cid SS had many new safety features like a new shock absorbing steering column and push button seat belt releases for both front and rear. They also created smooth contoured levers and dash knobs to prevent injury in an accident. The face lift kit for the '67 was subtle and refined for a lean aerodynamic forward look. Tom found this car in Missouri for sale through a Classic car Sales office in Nebraska. It's 100% stock and in excellent condition with the ID/Warranty plate intact. This car is a driver, yet it's super clean. Only a hand full of cars out there have never been driven in the rain--this happens to be one of them. When this car was new, it sold for $2,825 ... or about $.83 per pound. Tom Lala Sheridan, Wyoming
1934 Ford 3-Window Coupe When we look at a street rod, we all have a different picture in our mind. It usually relates back to the time when we were young. Maybe this is what really keeps us young at heart. Ken is a car guy through and through. Time doesn't diminish that feeling just because a gray hair may show up. Perfection would be the way to describe the work Ken does.You see the details when you look at his collection.
The Street Rod you are looking at is a 1934 3-window coupe, one of the most sought after classics of all time. It has a Kugel independent front suspension with disk brakes. As an added touch Ken upholstered Ford Bronco front seats.
This, by the way, was the first car Ken ever owned. It was his main form of transportation for his first two years of college. many of us have wondered what ever happened to our first car.....Ken knows.
Ken is a professional automotive painter who started back in the days when he was a teenager. He painted this 1934 red and then added orange pears for a stunning appearance. It runs down the roar with a 427 Chevy engine, turbo 400 transmission and a Corvette rear end. The restoration took years --- not uncommon timing when you build a dream. Ken & Dilys Neibauer Billings, Montana
1970 Plymouth Magnum Cuda Ed Randash is a true Mopar guy who has a flair for perfection when it comes to the restoration of his favorite Dodge cars. What he has done for this 1970 Plymouth Magnum Cuda is nothing short of the impossible. He has taken this Cuda to an entire new level of excitement. "Famous Dave Frank" of Bunzie's Rod Shop in Billings, MT had accrued 1800 hours of build time for this project. It was built from a 2006 Dodge Magnum SRT8 6.1 Hemi 5 speed automatic.It has an Altercation tubular front end. It has Custom Wildwood powder disk brakes on all wheels.The rear end is 8 3/4 inch with 4 link and adjustable coil over shocks. It uses 20 inch Dub wheels and directional tires with TPMS. Both the front and rear glass has been flush mounted with the drip rails shaved, the bumpers both front and rear have been narrowed.
He installed a Dodge Magnum dash, seats, center consol, climate control with electric windowed and door locks. In addition to the intermittent wipers it has a tire pressure monitor system and air bags. All of its electronics and wiring were transferred from Magnum to the Cuda. A custom engine cover, front and rear spoilers were added. This Cuda is an award winner with "Goodguys". Ed & Linda Randash, Billings, Montana
1930 Model ACoupe Close friends and co-workers often can be the best source for locating the car of our dreams. This was true in the case of the '30 Model A Coupe. Vern wanted an old car to fix up. Perhaps his father or grandfather had owned one in the past. His co-worker's mother had a '30 Model A that, much to her dismay, none of her children wanted.
When he first saw the condition of the car, he shook his head. He knew the car was worth less than he offered, but he wanted it. His offer was rejected outright. His desire out weighed his concern for the cost. He upped the offer and trucked the car back to Montana.
The frame off restoration took more than four years to complete. Vern wanted this car to be as authentic as possible, right down to the 24 1/2 horse power motor and the three speed transmission. He was able to find everything that he needed. It was as if Henry Ford was handing him the keys to a brand new car.
Vern did the upholstery and trusted the paint to Everlast. This stunner has appeared in dozens of shows and has won a total of 60 trophies to date. Style was key to the designers of the '30s. They reduced the size of the wheels by two inches and added larger tires to lower the car. The gas filler remained on the newly designed cowl in front of the windshield for a smoother appearance. Vern & Irene Johnson, Bozeman, Montana
1965 Chevrolet Corvair Ron Hill, a GM designer, made major changes to the '65 Corvair. The lines he applied were sleeker and highlighted the pillarless hardtop as in the Italian sports cars. This Monza has a true independent suspension that allows for superior driving performance. Years ago, Mark and Kathi owned a Corvair. They loved it. That affection lingered for years. On a warm Sunday afternoon they were on a typical afternoon outing. They spotted this '65 Corvair that had been parked in one spot for so long, it was taking root. The paint was faded, the tires were flat and the sun had destroyed the interior. They really wanted this sweet thing.
With no one home, they took a chance and left a note on the door. When the owner returned home, he told them to come back and pick it up. They were truly surprised. Three years and a total restoration later, the car is a gem. Mark did the body and paint. Harolds Upholstery of Billings did the interior. It still has the flat, 6 cyl engine 110 bhp with a factory automatic. Only 88,954 of these cars rolled off of the assembly line in 1965. They retailed for $2,347.
Mark & Kathi are thrilled to have this beautiful little car that's fun to drive and has so many unique qualities. Mark & Kathi Tronstad, Billings, Montana
1963 Mercury Comet Convertible
This 1963 Mercury Comet Convertible remains completely stock dating back to 1962 when it was new. Like many owners, Robert Eggebrecht traded it for another car. In the spring of 1991, he was looking through a local junkyard for parts and found this old convertible. That's right. It was the same convertible he had purchased some thirty years earlier. It showed the ravages of time, but was still in one piece and, more importantly, it was restorable. He took it home and started to work on it. Soon it became apparent that the restoration was going to cost more than he could afford.
In 2001, Dan Koch bought the '63 from Robert Eggebrecht and began the daunting task of a full restoration . Dan rebuilt or replaced everything on the Comet. It has the original 6 cyl. ,170 cc engine with the Dagenham 4-speed transmission and factory 3.50:1 gears. Custom interior, carpets and a convertible top combined with all new chrome was just the start. The paint color was kept the original "Carnival Red." Dan added electronic ignition, a Holly carb, baby moon wheels and many extras to make it his own. Dan and Jeanette enjoy driving and attending car shows in their iconic 60's Comet. K.Dan & Jeanette Koch, Laurel, Montana
1971 Chevrolet Chevelle Super Sport This 1971 Chevrolet "Chevelle Super Sport" was a mean muscle car developed during the 1970s. This car was in the category of "I just gotta have one." The man or women who lived for and loved extreme performance, felt right at home behind the wheel, whether it was on the drag strip or burnin' the point on the main drag. It was all about the horse power.
This car has a 383 stroker with a 100 shot of nitrous that can be applied if ever needed. The transmission is a tubro 350 coupled with a 12-bolt posi traction rear end. This power train has less than 600 miles on it. It has a "rev" limited with a BNM shifter complete with a lookout on the front. There is a computer chip installed to regulate the engine along with the Nitrous Oxide. The interior is in excellent condition with a rust free body. More than $34,000 was invested with this frame off restoration.
It's an age old story. A person puts in their blood, sweat and tears into a car and then must sell it for personal reasons. This is how this car landed on the block of a classic car auction in 2005. It has been an award winner at many shows throughout the country. Seanesy Gray, Billings, Montana
1931 White Bus A piece of our history has been preserved for others to enjoy with this 1931 Yellowstone Park Bus. This would have to be termed 99% original for those who study the past. Bus # 361 was repainted to its original yellow in 2004 for the Centennial Celebration of Old Faithful Inn. Historical records show this bus delivered passengers in 1931 when the Inn was only 27 years old. Eight buses were made for the Yellowstone Park Company, all still exist today. The new enclosed buses proved so popular that the wealthy would pull strings just to ride in them through the park. This 14 passenger bus has four long brown real leather seats, four doors on the passenger side and only one door on the drivers side.The floor and running boards are covered with tan linoleum. The tan canvas roof was designed to roll back, giving tourists an open view of the park. North Star Body & Trailer Repair completed the new paint job and Jerry Weitz crafted the upholstery. We owo a lot to people like Bruce Austin who understand the value and importance of preserving the treasures of Yellowstone National Park. Bruce Austin Nye, Montana
1929 Ford Highboy Roadster
A Highboy 1929 Ford Roadster like this one is meant to be driven. That is exactly what Rich & Sue enjoy doing. They live in a part of Montana surrounded by tall mountain peaks and lush green forest. The only problem they encounter is that the summers are just not long enough !
This Highboy was built during the winter of 1989 -90 in southern California by "Magoo", a respected car builder who is retired and enjoying the good life.
This car was bought and sold five times over a span of just a few years. Rich was able to contact all five previous owners and document his car's history.
It traveled the nation ... from California to New York, back to California, on to Minnesota, North Dakota and finally, Montana.
She's had a few modifications to the fuel and electrical system, and louvers were added to the hood. Of course paint chips are always an issue on a "driver", but that's a small price to pay. This Highboy is equipped with a Chevy 350 cid and a Turbo 350 automatic transmission.
1936 Buick Sedan Did you ever wonder what the neighbors may think when they see you dragging an old car home with the lower four inches rusted away ? Ask jay, that was the condition of this '36 Buick when he brought it home in 1985 - a recommendation from their local paperboy.
Restoration was a daunting seven year task. He did all the work himself. When you tackle a frame-off restoration and have to fabricate you own metal, you learn the hard way. Body, paint and everything but the interior, which he farmed out to Sea-Tac Auto Upholstry of Seattle.
The 350 small block Chevy with an automatic transmission came from a Nova that had plunged over a cliff. When you promise something special, she won't let you forget it. jay told his daughter that if he ever won a first place trophy, the car would be hers. He was chewing on those words as he watched his daughter, Nikki, load up his prize winning Buick in the back of a trailer and move it from his home in Seattle back to Montana. She loves the car and it has become a part of the family. "Thanks owed" to a loving Dad who kept his word.
1972 Chevrolet C-10 Pickup The year was 1969 when Brian's father was growing up. Like many young men, he was cruising around in his prized possession - a Chevy pickup. He told his son that someday his old truck would belong to him - it happened sooner than he thought. One day his "pride and joy" was driving his "pride and joy." A few years later, Brian spotted a 1972 short box Chevy in Nashville, TN. Someone spent many thousands of dollars and countless hours in a frame off restoration. When you examine a classic in depth, the trained eye looks for flaws in the most unlikely places. There were none. This pickup is not just for show, it's for a driver to enjoy, which simply adds to the fun. Power comes from a 350 small block with an automatic transmission and a 373 rear end. The Chevrolet short box pickup remains a collector's top choice for both investment purposes as well as personal appeal to the true truck enthusiasts. When the first V-8 was introduced to the Chevrolet line of pickups, the year was 1955. American culture was changing at a rapid pace. Shops specializing in restoration and customizing had become a big business.
1957 Chevrolet BelAir 2 Door Post One of the most popular cars of the '50's has become the classic of choice for many enthusiasts. These cars have activated the lure and appeal of a generation that today has made this one of the most popular classics ever. Who knows just what it is - the classic fins, bullet nose cones on the bumper or just overall styling in general. Perhaps it is a combination of style and performance. this beauty has a big block 454 with a 750 Holly carb. Couple that with a 6-speed and 373 gears and you are pumping out over 425 bhp, so fasten your seat belts and hold on for the ride of your life.! This car retained its heavy chrome bumpers and trim that it came with. Bill commissioned a fantastic flame job to J&C Body of Butte, Montana. A beautiful interior was added by Gotcha Covered Upholstery, also of Butte, who designed it to match the outside flames. Bill's youngest son has laid claim to his dad's car. No wonder!
1937 Ford Slant Back The 1937 Ford was a real trendsetter. It led the way by streamlining the body to reduce air resistance for better gas mileage. This car was pro-built by Sam Foose, father of Chip Foose of "Foose Wheels" and the popular "Overhaulin" television program. This is an excellent "driver" hot rod. The car is all steel with the exception of the hood sides. The body is pin straight and painted with a late 1990 Cadillac green. The original frame has been fully boxed in with square cross members added. They installed a Mustang II sub frame with 11 inch powder disc brakes for added stopping power. The engine is a ZZ4/350 with aluminum heads producing 350 bhp. A classic brass radiator was added for cooling along with powder coated headers and a Flomaster for the exhaust system. The transmission is a turbo 350 automatic with a Currie rear end. The electrical is supported by a 160 amp alternator with dual batteries to run the doors, windows, hood and trunk. Additional power was also needed for the 400 amp equalizer with its 14 speakers (mostly hidden) and the AM/FM Cassette 6-CD changer. Rounded door corners, Bear Claw latches and '48 frenched tail-lights add beauty to this stunning machine. The interior is leather and tweed and features 6-way power seats from a late model T-Bird. The steering column is from GM. It has a beautiful hand-painted wood grain dash with VDO gauges and a power retractable license in the rear. This car is a professionally built, turn key and just plain gorgeous.
1961 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Ron purchased this 1961 Corvette in Huntington Long island, New York, in 1963. It was in excellent condition. Now that he had this beautiful car, all that was missing was the beautiful women to ride around in it. Ron asked Maureen to marry him in the 'Vette ..... she agreed and the picture was complete.
After their marriage in 1965, they drove the car to Miami Beach, Florida, for their honeymoon. The Vette and their marriage are both classics of today.
The car is a true survivor ---- everything is original, including the Jewel Blue paint, which was only used on the '61s. It is equipped with a 283 cid 230 bhp engine and Powerglide transmission. An optional power top was added when it was purchased new. this car in considered a first generation Corvette. This year was the last with the external trunk and solid rear axel. The sports-car feeling is enhanced "elbow out the window" seating. '61 was also the first year for aluminum radiators and transmission cases along with a temperature control fan. The quality was at its peak in 1961, but started to slide in later years as GM started ramping up production to meet demand.
Only 10,939 were made and sold for $3,934. Ruppe's Corvette is truly a member of the family after 49 memorable years together. The family now lives in Hudson, Florida.
1966 Ford Thunderbird Convertible The 1966 Thunderbird became a proud moment for Ford. The styling was superb with its full width tail lights, cruise control and steering wheel buttons offered as a new option. In 1965 Clay and Joyce purchased this car sight unseen in Fayetteville, Ohio from its original owners. It was advertised in a newspaper by the Heartland Thunderbird Car Club.
Ford produced only 5,049 convertibles. Unique to this car was the 428 cid engine offered by Ford as an upgrade for a whopping $64. But the desirability of this car doesn't end there. It has red leather seats, Candy Apple red paint with a three tone red-on-red interior, and -- most important of all -- it has matching numbers.
It was a cold December day when they made the drive to Ohio to bring their new "honey" home in a trailor. A frame off restoration started in 2000 revealed major undercarriage damage from an earlier accident. This challenging restoration took a full five years to complete. Procraft Carstar did the body and paint work, Miller's Auto Interior did the upholstery; both business are located in Great Falls, Montana
Clay and Joyce have driven their honey to several Vintage Thunderbird Club Invitation Events where it now has senior car status. It sold new in Gary, Indiana for $4,734.23 and weighted in at 4, 496 pounds or about $1.05 per pound.
1966 Ford Mustang Convertible Detroit enjoyed its greatest success in 1966 with the production of the incomparable Ford Mustang. It caused quite a stir .... housewives entering contests to win their dream car, truckers crashing thru showroom windows while gawking .... you get the picture. Demand exceeded supply by 15 to 1. This frenzy was the work of car designer and automotive phenom, Lee Iacocca.
In the midst of the fray, was Steve Solberg's father. He sold this handsome new car to a couple from Great Falls, MT who taught school. In the '70s the car was placed in storage where it remained for more than 30 years.
Steve's persistence in trying to buy this car paid off. He purchased the car from its original owners with a mere 64,000 miles on it. It needed a new top, upholstery and fresh paint, Springtime yellow. The car is equipped with a 6 cylinder engine and an automatic transmission. It produces 12 bhp. Ford sold this car for $2,653 and produced just 72,113 convertibles that year.
1965 Chevrolet Impala SS Many years ago, Larry and Rhonda owned a car like the one you see above. Larry was carving out a future for himself and his new bride. That's when opportunity knocked in the form of a parcel of land that he simply could not pass up. He needed this property more than a car. The choice was tough. The car was sold. This car, which was the second love of his life, was gone but not forgotten. Many years later, they found a car similar to the one they had previously owned. This '65 Chevy had all matching numbers, a 327/300 hp engine, power windows, tilt steering wheel and power brakes. It was loaded. Larry retained the original color scheme, Evening Orchid with black leather interior. The graceful lines of the fastback were limited to the convertibles and the hardtop coupe models. This car features the SS emblems, bucket seats, and a central gearshift console with an optional tachometer. GM considers this SS to be the best performing Chevy in history, with its stiffer springs and shocks, 4-speed gear box and ultra quick power steering. Only 243,114 Super Sports were built making it a prized collectible. They weighed in at 3970 pounds and sold for $2,947 at the Detroit assembly plant for GM.
1955 Chevrolet BelAir
Whenever a '55 Chevy BelAir goes by, heads turn, especially when it's a striking yellow like this show car. The ride in this car is one of the smoothest ever experienced. The deep pile carpet is pure white with the yellow Chevy "bow-tie" emblem sewn into it. The restoration time was a full two years. Rimrock Collision Center did the body and paint; Harolds Upholstery did the interior. Both businesses are from Billings, Montana. A professional frame off restoration made this car a contender on the show circuit. Features on this Chevy include: 454 big block, turbo 350 transmission, dual 500 cfm Edelbrock carbs, MSD electronic ignition, Dakota digital dash, power windows, Pioneer sound, LED tail lights. It also has braided stainless hoses, 9 inch Ford diff, disc brakes, air, keyless entry, remote entry, white leather interior and many more special items.
1967 Pontiac GTO Convertible
What better way to enjoy life than cruising along with the top down on one of the most coveted convertibles, the '67 Pontiac GTO. Ed always wanted a "goat" from his days in High School. He had the itch but not the scratch. With a family to raise, the dream would have to just remain just that. For a while.
Ed worked hard to build a successful business. When he spotted this 1967 on the Internet, he convinced his brother-in-law to fly to California with him to check it out. He was pleasantly surprised, the car was exactly as advertised. The GTO Association of America has examined this car and determined it meets the judging standard for earning the Concours Gold Award.
This car has: 400 ci 360 bhp engine, hood tach, his & hers Hurst shifter, original bucket seats, Rally 1 wheels with wide oval red line, GM Gardner exhaust system, complete PHS documents, original Harris radiator, re-built factory gauges, original factory radio, all matching numbers. Only 9517 of these beauties were built. They sold for $3,165 new ... that's about $ .90 per pound. Ed & Marsha Neeriemer Sheridan, Wyoming
1965 Mercury 100 Pickup
Powerful and smooth. The 1965 Mercury 100 rides like a car with its Twin I Beam front suspension. There are two front axles --- a shock felt on one wheel is not transferred to the other. This has helped Mercury eliminate the dipping and diving associated with sudden stops. This rare truck has Mercury's new 352 cid V-8 engine with a factory Positraction rear end. Mike added the factory tri-power carburetors with the Mercury air cleaner, power steering and power disc brakes. Very few came with an automatic and the custom trim package. This package consisted of a custom cab, gauge package, tinted glass and chrome reversible bumpers front and rear. Another interior item was the zippered door pockets. Mike added the tuck and roll white leather to the roof. The rarity of this original truck has made it a true collector's item. It has won top awards at every show that it has been entered in.
1927 Cadillac Touring Car This 1927 Cadillac was one of eight purchased by the Glacier Park Transport Company, which succeeded the Glacier Park transportation Company in 1927. These cars were purchased with the intent to gain publicity for the touring operations in Glacier National Park and Waterton International Peace Park. they hoped this would help attract the President of The United States to visit the park. Correspondence in the park archives indicates they had been successful in achieving a Presidential visit. The owner of GPT Co., Howard Hays, had influential friends in the Park Service and with the railroads. All of their efforts paid off when Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his family toured the park in August of 1934.
This car, and seven others like it, were used for the Presidential visit; only four of the cars have survived. This one remains its original color, Ripe Mountain Ashberry. This was the Presidents favorite color and was used for the park fleet. This car was removed from the park service in 1950 and later sold to the heir of the park company. It spent the next 55 years as an event car for Glacier national park. In 2005, a non-profit educational Montana public service company, The Jammer trust, was organized to preserve vehicles such as these for future generations.
1946 Ford Pickup
Tell a man that you just can't do this and then stand back and watch.! ! ! This pickup owner proved it could be done. We all agree it is a Ford, however is it more Mustang or More Pickup.? A 1998 GT Mustang 4.6 V-8 Front clip was covered using the hood and front fenders from his 1946 Ford pickup. The complete power train had to be extended 13 inches. The Ford GT dash was used but had to be shortened 12 inches on each side yet he was able to use the GT gauges, Mach 1 stereo sound system with AM/FM CD radio and air conditioning. A give-a-way happens to be the Mustang wheels. He used a Green Titanium paint accented with black trim. This was created in his garage doing all the work without hiring any outside help. His wife dubbed it a "pick-tang" for the first three years. As more Mustang parts were added to the '46 she decided it should be called a "mus up". It took about 9 years and 3 months to complete working 3 days per week.
1970 Buick Grand Sport Convertible
The beautiful 1970 Buick Grand Sport qualifies as a survivor and is one of the very best preserved cars that I have seen. Jim purchased this car new off the showroom floor when he returned from overseas duty in the military. He also acquired a new love by the name of Sylvia, whom he married in 1972. This car was their only transportation and served them well in the early years for work, play, and moonlight drives with the top down. They knew they wanted to keep this car and placed it in storage for many years. It does get a chance to enjoy the sunshine for a few days each summer. Actual miles on this convertible are only 3,800 miles and still has the original bias red line tires which appear new. The top is dark brown to match the interior as well as the exterior. Jim & Sylvia drive it about 100 miles each year -- just enough to ensure that this Buick will be in their family for many generations to come. This Buick is a stage one. It has a 451 cid engine, a high lift cam and a quadrajet carburetor. Everything is heavy duty including the function air scoops. The 360 bhp engine delivers 510 foot pounds of torque to the rear wheels. When GM came out with the saying "light your fire", they really did do it right. Only 1,416 were made in 1970. They retailed for $3,469.00
1970 Pontiac GTO - The Judge
When you lose a car that was a large part of your life, you lose a little bit of yourself with it. Loren purchased his "Judge" new when he graduated from UW in Madison, Wisconsin. Ten years and three children later, his "Judge" pulled a trailer from Wisconsin to Wyoming. In 1980 he was forced to sell his "Judge," something he refers to as a huge mistake. In 2005, he began to search for his original car, to no avail. He did, however stumble upon a restoration shop in Nebraska that specialized in GTOs. The shop owner knew of a GTO body in fair shape in Arizona. Loren jumped on it the very next day and made arrangements to have it shipped to Nebraska for a frame off restoration. He located a rebuilt GTO 455 cid engine, 4-speed transmission and a Posi 3.55:1 rear end along with new suspension. An Edelbrock 850 carburetor and manifold to help generate more than 390 bhp. The interior and paint were designed to match his original in "Grenada Gold." The owner of the car said, and I quote, "There is no doubt that I am trying to "relive" my college days, it's fun! Driving a "classic" makes me feel young again. All the work and money is well worth it when you get a thumbs up from a stranger." A special thanks to Loren's son-in-law for his technical advice on rebuilding options, even though he is a Mopar guy. Only 3,269 Judge Coupes were made and they sold for $3,500. This is truly "Old School Muscle."
1929 Ford Tudor
If Henry Ford were around today to see what we have done to his beloved '29 Ford, he would be amazed. through the years, the "Tudor" has been changed in a thousand different ways. they have been made into trucks, snow coaches, dune buggies, and rat rods ..... just to mention a few. In this case , an LSA Corvette engine with 375 bhp was installed and making it look like it belonged there. A 700R4 transmission was added with a 9 inch Ford differential, making this truly a street rod to recon with. This application has left many shaking their heads wondering how they fit it in where they did. Barbara wanted this to be an award winning street rod. that's just what she got. The body work was done by Wally Norley, Butte; upholstery by Kirk Grantham, Billings; paint by Jamie Loehr of Anaconda, Montana. The total restoration has taken just under four years to complete. Barbara Dickinson, Butte, Montana
1958 Chevrolet Impala Convertible It's not unusual for a car enthusiast to take on a monumental task, one from which others would shake their heads, shrug their shoulders and walk on. Many of our spouses do just that ... shake their heads and wonder what we are thinking. They are also the first to cry "Shotgun" when the task is complete. A farmer had this car stored for more than 20 years in a barn. It was a total basket case. Ray had to take it down to the bare frame to begin the restoration. Nine years and untold hours brought this beauty back to life ... and what a beauty it is.
It has a 348 cid Turbo thrust V-8 tri-power with a power glide transmission that tosses out 315 bhp. This car has full power assessories plus a Wonderbar radio and a continental wheel kit. Tom's Body Shop of Grand Forks, No. Dakota., did the body and paint; Queen City Upholstery of Dickinson, No. Dakota; completed the interior.
Impala served as Chevrolet's only convertible. It came all dressed up with fender skirts, white wall tires, color coded door panels and steering wheel. Brand spanking new this gem would set you back about $2,841.00
1932 Plymouth PB Coupe Beauty and craftsmanship go hand-in-hand with this 1932 Plymouth PB three-window coupe. The car was resurrected from a farm in western Massachusetts and was in pretty rough shape. After harvesting parts for many years, the 12-year-long restoration began. The car was built by Lazer Automotive in Granby, Mass., by Chuck Lofand, Leo Martin and John Cook. The old frame was damaged; new rails were fabricated from the firewall forward boxing both front and rear and adding a 6 inch dropped front axel. John's friend, Charlie Strand, found a 392 Hemi in Thermopolis, Wyoming. The engine was rebuilt by Dutcher Automotive in Greenfield, Mass. Bob Walker owner of Hot Heads in North Carolina, helped supply the needed parts including his High Rise Manifold. The valve covers are replica Donovans and were a birthday gift from his wife Charlotte. It has a 9-inch Ford 3:70 Posi rear end with a 727 tourque plate transmission. Scotts Sheetmetal of Chicopee, Mass., made the 19 gallon stainless steel tank. Ed Ruggeri crafted all the stainless items; John gave them the final polish. Wood body parts were replaced with steel, Masserati bucket seats were covered with Ultra Leather by Bill Newth of Springfield, Mass. Prior to painting with a Dupont Merlot red base, the body was coated with epoxy primer then recieved cool car undercoating. This car has been driven more than 14,000 miles in the last three years. They trailer it behind their motor home and drive it at their various stops accross the nation.
1929 American LaFrance Firetruck
America has a long tradition of honoring the courage and dedication of our firefighters. When Ron decided to restore this old 1929 American LaFrance, it was more than just a fire truck. It was a way to preserve our heritage. He purchased this truck from an antique dealer in Loveland, Colorado, in 1999. The restoration took nine years to complete. The seat was only a frame. Every valve had to be taken apart and rebuilt to its condition when it was new. It was then painted fire engine red and re-lettered by Ogden Auto Body of Ogden, Utah.
Built in Elmira, New York, in 1929, it would pump 750 gallons per minute. Its water tank held only 60 gallons making it completely dependent on fire hydrants. It's 22 feet long and a full seven foot wide. It is powered by a 150 hp 6 - cylinder in-line engine. It has a brass bell that the driver would ring while on the way to a fire along with the siren. During production in 1929, four wheel brakes were added. The first fire truck was guilt in 1905. Each of them was made by hand at great expense.
1968 Dodge Coronet R/T Convertible Only a convertible can offer you the freedom of the road, the wind in your hair and the warmth of the sun for an experience unlike any other. This is the feeling Doug and Paula look forward to when they go cruising in this classic Dodge convertible. Doug acquired this car in 1994 and took four years to complete the restoration and make it his own.
The body and paint were done by Maaco Collision Repair & Auto Painting of Billings. Jim's Upholstery and did a superior job on the interior making this a true show piece.
The 1968 Coronet R/T was revised to make it the best looking mid-sized Dodge yet. The body was rounded like a fuselage, long and low. It ranked among 1968,s quickest and most roadworthy performance machines to become part of the "Scat Pack." This car remains a top choice for car collectors. The price remains at a premium for a convertible. These cars sported an enlarged 273 ci engine that produced 275 bhp. Only 10,849 were built and they sold for $3,613 .... just a mere $1.00 per pound.
1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 The Mach 1 Mustang fastback coupe is one of the most coveted of all muscle cars. This candy apple red beauty has a history that is bound in a storied past. It has survived two divorces and a 351 Winsor engine with Ram Air induction that never received a bath and had to be taken apart and rebuilt to factory specs. This car remained in storage for ten years. A Ford 999 report confirmed that the matching numbers on this car were indeed correct. With a little TLC, this car earned "Wyoming Muscle Car of the Year" for 2006 at the Rocky Mountain Rendezvous Car Show in Riverton, Wyoming. The 1969 Mustang, with its longer nose, quad headlights, and a seven inch longer body than its predecessor made for a very significant upgrade. Built on a 108 inch wheelbase, it weighed in at 3,175 pounds. Only 72,458 rolled off of the assembly line and retailed for a whopping $3,139.00
1948 Mercury Convertible
Edsel Ford created the Mercury in 1939 to fill a special place in the Ford Motor Company line up. Production had a rocky start with World War II looming on the horizon. By 1942, Mercury, along with other car manufacturers, ceased production for the war effort. Production resumed in 1946. By the time this car was built in 1948, sales approached 7,586 convertibles. This car sold for $2,002.00. Oldsmobile,s similar car sold for $2,003.00 and the Dodge was $2,189. This was the price range that Edsel Ford wanted to compete in. This car has a colorful history. Jimmys parents, Art & Marlene were married in this car before selling it in 1954 or '55. By 1974, Jimmy's father got word that the car was in a boneyard 450 miles away in Glendive, MT by the North Dakota border. Art paid $700 to retrieve it. The car was in rough shape. It took a frame-off restoration that lasted for nearly 20 years, Art, the dad along with his sons Jimmy & Jason and a good friend David Kemp completed the work to make it a dream come true. The original Maize Yellow was created and looks stunning under the black convertible top. Don Lennox of Billings did the tuck and roll naugahyde interior to match the paint. The 239 cid engine with 100 bhp and "three on the tree" transmission are still part of this beautiful automobile.
1956 Ford F-100 Pickup
Ford scored a big one with the 1956 F-100. It proved to be an instant success among pickup fans. The buying public spoke when they referred to its styling calling it solid, well built body, rugged, yet it appealed to women. When they moved the front axel back, it gave it the appearance of being nose heavy. Safety was a major concern, so in 1956, they made major changes to prevent government regulations from taking effect. They added a collapsible steering column, double grip door latches, a new wrap-around windshield and a twelve-volt electrical system. The restoration consisted of a frame-off rotisserie, low car floor shifter with a no-limit chrome dash. The engine was a crate 392 cubic inch on a Mustang II front suspension. A C-4 overdrive transmission, tilt forward hood with a diamond plated box bed was a must. A chrome tilt steering column, VDO gauges, bucket seats with a M/T Classic II polished wheels sporting ultra touring tires, four inch wider rear fenders make this a real show truck. They then added a new designed console and used a Russ Francis wiring harness.
1970 Plymouth Superbird The Superbird of the 70s earned its wings when Richard Petty won eight major victories in just one year. They were designed for the NASCAR racing circuit. There were only 1,920 Birds ever built. The cars built for the racetrack were slightly modified with roll bars welded to the frame for protection at high speeds. On the racetrack, they would run up to 220 mph. Street-legal Birds topped out at around 140 mph. Its speed was proven when Pete Hamilton averaged 150 mph to beat every Dodge and Ford.
Both on and off the track, they all used bias ply tires with inner tubes. The rear wing was adjustable to prevent the tires from shredding with too much down force.
The Superbirds accounted for 21 of 38 Grand National wins in 1970. This car was purchased at a Silver Auction in Idaho in 1996 from the original owner, who purchased it new while living in California. When he went out to look the car over after the auction, he found the husband and wife in the car crying. He asked them if they were happy or sad regarding the sale. Their reply was “both.” The only item ever added to this car was an ARA air conditioner hanging below the dash. This low-mileage car is equipped with a 440 engine and a 4-barrel carb. The engine produces 390 bhp, has a 3-speed TorqueFlite automatic with an added torque converter and 323 gears in the rear.
1962 Chevrolet Impala SS 409
A yellow convertible on a warm summer evening, a beautiful girl beside you and the wind blowing through your hair - it doesn't get any better than that. The history of this car was relayed to me by Wayne is a classic all by itself. In 1967, when Wayne was just 19, he saved every penny, nickel and dime for the day he could purchase his "409". This car was sold in Cody, Wyoming, to a policeman, who years later sold it to Gordon Tomlinson, a friend of Wayne's. Gordon sold it to Wayne with one stipulation... he had three months to pay the $1400 asking price before he (Gordon) left for Vietnam. Working three jobs, Wayne still needed $200, which his buddy Lyle Jones loaned him at the last minute. In 1984, the 409 had about 133,000 miles on it. Wayne decided to park it in hopes of restoring it in the furure. Twenty two years later the restoration began and took more than 2 1/2 years. He employed Clint Patterson of Clint's Classic Restoration, in Glendive, Montana to restore his "409". Albert Allan of Richland upholstery, Fairview, ontana , installed the top and also all the interior work. Don Whitcomb, a master mechanic from Billings, rebuilt the "409" engine, M-21 Muncie 4-speed and the 4:11 posi rear end. This car has all matching numbers and retains its 204 barrel carbs. His wife Laurie has given him 100% support in building this car - and also kept writhing the checks needed so that we could complete it. A very special thanks to the "Badlands drifters Car Club" of Glendive, Montana, who made all this possible. Wayne & Laurie Bauer, Billings, Montana
1969 Dodge Charger “The General Lee”
Watching the Dukes of Hazzard on television has inspired many kids to want to be like them. More importantly, that someday you will have the chance to own and drive the General Lee. This dream came true for Gabriel in 2004 when he purchased this 1969 Dodge Charger. It was a mess when he acquired it. But a mere four years later, the restoration was finished, complete with the Dixie horn just as in the show. His four year old son calls it the du,du,dut,du car for the sound that the horn makes. As for the license plate, it reads “YEEHA 01.” This Dukes of Hazzard Tribute sports a 383 big block, 4 speed transmission and 8 3/4 inch posi rear end. It has custom interior with a 01 and rebel flag embroidered in the seat and door panels. The bush pusher is home made. Gabriel & Teresa Hink, Billings, Montana
1933 Buick Sedan Series 60
Buick has a long and storied history. A pioneer in the car market that blazed its way into the hearts of the American family for the next 90 years and still going strong. The 1933 Buick Victoria was to be one of the most elegant cars produced for its time. Featured in the book Hot Rods & Classics by Duane Demars on page 58. This car was sold new in Odgen, Utah in 1933. When you take on the task of restoration on a car this old, parts and trim can be very hard to come by. And yes, this car was rebuilt to 1933 factory specifications which included a coat rack behind the front seat as well as a "bud vase" for your flowers. This all steel car would prove its worth in the years to come.
1929 Ford Model A
The secret to building a street rod is to make it different than anything you have ever dreamed of in your lifetime. Take a step back in time to the 1981 U.S. Nationals in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This street rod was judged good enough to qualify as one of the top 10 in the entire United States. It is cars like this that set the standard for the best there is to offer in restoring and rebuilding the classics for many years to come.
This 1929 Ford Model A with its 5-inch chopped top is a far cry from the days when it rolled off Mr. Ford's assembly line. The engine is a 327 cid Chevy with a 400 automatic transmission coupled with a 9-inch Ford rear end. The front end has a Kugel independent suspension with disc brakes. The man who owns this classic purchased it in 1989, with the reputation of being one of the best painters in the area he gave it a stunning paint job. The Opal "Signal Green" was a very popular color in the 1980s. Drive this car in a parade and you will be sure to have heads turn only to dream of the day they will have their own classic.
1966 Pontiac GTO (Gran Turismo Omologato)
General Motors launched this high performance family car in 1964 by chief designer David North, now retired and living in Billings, Montana. This car was to provide the excitement we needed in the '60s at a time when our boys and girls were returning from a very unpopular war. The 60s proved to be the start of the true muscle cars. The cost of a car was a big factor, about $.87 per pound compared to $10.78 today. For our returning men and women from overseas it was a car that they could afford. If you wanted a GTO equipped the way you wanted it, no problem. You could add the following to your basic car: floor shifter, 389 cid V-8, quick steering, stiff shocks, dual exhaust and premium tires all for about $300. A 4 speed gear box $188, Metallic brake lining, heavy-duty radiator and a no-slip rear end $75. Some people referred the Ferrari to the GTO, the Ferrari cost $20,000 and the Pontiac GTO $3,800. In a drag race the GTO would be the winner, the down side would be it would lose on a road course. When the '66 came out, the body had been extended 3 inches, the rear fenders had a "coke bottle" appearance along with smoother body lines. Vertical head lights would remain until the '67 production year. These cars have long been the choice for the serious car enthusiast who wants quality, styling and true performance for all occasions. Another important factor, as the family grew you did not have to deprive your self of your dream machine.
1964 Ford Fairlane 500
This 1964 Ford 500 is all stock with matching numbers; 21,431 Sport Coupes were to come off the line in 1964. Only 4000 of them had the K-code. As we found out, only 110 have known to have survived. The color, Guardsman Blue is a true factory color. This car has a sportier trim, bucket seats, console and gauges. The engine is a Hipo 289 with a 4-speed top loader transmission and a 3:89 rear end. A Ford Hipo power plant will add about 1 bhp per 1 cubic inch of displacement. On the drag strip the Chevy 309 was great competition . This car was smooth yet with a lot of power and very good gas mileage.
From the day of Henry Ford, cars of this size have been the mainstay of the family home. It may have been a convertible, a station wagon or just a plain four door sedan. Detroit has come a long way from the 1940s when 50,000 miles were considered the maximum life for a car. By the 1960s, we were driving 100,000 miles, yet today 200,000 is not out of the question. It was about this time when a once-in-a-while car would come with electric windows and, yes, air conditioning. The tires were still bias ply with radial tires not very far away. A ride like this one sold for about $2,500 and gas was about 25 cents per gallon.
2001 C-5 Corvette
An American dream come true. The Chevrolet Corvette is a true American sports car. The C5 featured a hydroformed box frame that offered an improved structural platform. They then moved the transmission to the rear of the car. This would form a rear mounted transaxel assembly. The engine is a 5.7 LS 7 with a 4-speed automatic. The top panel provides a clear vision to the stars and could be considered a semi convertible as it can be removed and placed in the rear compartment. I also have a Buick Park Avenue Ultra 3.8 turbo and this gets better gas mileage than the Vette. Yes, it will take some practice to learn how to get out of it. I remember the very first Corvette to be sold in Montana and wonder why I ever waited so long to own one.
1968 Chevrolet Camaro "Super Sport"
A true classic, Camaro's don't go to the after life, they are given a second chance at life. Even a donor car will give life to another Camaro. General Motors would allow you to build your Camaro to match your life style. These are some of the changes you were allowed to make. Stiffer springs & shocks, D-17 Wide oval Tires, modified hood & insulation, bumble-bee nose strips and the ever popular "SS" emblem. You could add a 396 Big Block for another $400. Custom carpet along with bucket seats and a fold down back seat. A luxury interior with all the gauges and a console with a shifter for Turbo Hydra-Matic, heavy duty 3 speed or 4 speed manual. The Rally-Sport package added a hidden headlight grill for a $105 extra. Extras in 1968 were tinted glass, radio, heater, clock, cruise control and air conditioning. Want the time? Add a clock. Mechanical options were, sintered metallic brakes, vacuum brake booster with ventilated disc brakes power steering. If you wanted the steering used in race cars you could have Fast Rate manual steering. Positraction limited-slip differential and your choice of many axle ratios. The price could go from $2900 to $5000 in the blink of an eye.
With the 60s, Chevrolet responded to all the turmoil in our nation with a size and style car to fit every need, each car had distinct car lines. Unlike today, designers could be creative.
1955 Chevrolet Bel-Air When General Motors designed the "Chevrolet Bel-Air" they hit the nail on the head. There had never been a car produced that would capture the buyers of all ages like the Bel-Air. It was a major departure from the body styles that would be the 49s through the early 54s. Looking back it was a very practical well built car with lots of leg room and would seat six adults. As the years would roll by the new term "aerodynamics" would start to rule the automotive design of all cars. It would be in the 60s that the personality would start to fade. Those of us who grew up in that area considered it the start of Classic Cars
Bone Yards ... One Man's Trash
To the undiscerning eye, a bone yard is just a bunch of rusting vehicles --- dinosaurs from our not distant past. To the men and women bitten by the restoration bug, these sites are not unlike an archaeological dig. It is in these bone yards that they find the parts to reconstruct the hot rods and classics from the golden age of automobiles. The true car enthusiast sees beyond the dented fenders, broken glass and even past the rusted floor pans and rocker panels. He or she will go to great lengths to convince a spouse that "it's not as bad as it looks". Once the objections are overcome, there is no turning back. The restoration is under way. Visits to bone yards become routine, we scavenge for the perfect "donor" car. If we locate the right one, we will use as many parts as we can. Every part we find saves us money. It may be something as simple as a fender or a piece of chrome...a find is like winning the lottery. Bone yards come in all sizes, from a few cars to thousands. They are just located just over the rise or fifty miles from civilization. Some are easy to find, others, well that's a different story. Perhaps a cup of coffee and a casual inquiry in the local diner will elicit directions. Who knows ? It's all part of the quest to fulfilling a dream. A dream that began in a bone yard.
1929 Ford Tudor
If Henry Ford were around today to see what we have done to his beloved '29 Ford, he would be amazed. Through the years, the "Tudor" has been changed in a thousand different ways. they have been made into trucks, snow coaches, dune buggies, and rat rods ..... just to mention a few. In this case , an LSA Corvette engine with 375 bhp was installed and making it look like it belonged there. A 700R4 transmission was added with a 9 inch Ford differential, making this truly a street rod to recon with. This application has left many shaking their heads wondering how they fit it in where they did. Barbara wanted this to be an award winning street rod. that's just what she got. The body work was done by Wally Norley, Butte; upholstery by Kirk Grantham, Billings; paint by Jamie Loehr of Anaconda, Montana. The total restoration has taken just under four years to complete. Barbara Dickinson, Butte, Montana
1935 Ford Coupe
Togetherness would be one way to descrbe this 1935 Ford Coupe because two people had to sit so close together! Ford called the "The Universal Car." There wasn't any other car in the world used by as many people as the Ford. It gained its reputation as being the symbol of faithful service. This new model provided an improved ride along with new smooth body lines. It out sold all other cars produced in 1935 largely due to its performance driven 110 bhp Flathead V-8 engine. Speed could easily top 100 mph if you dared to drive it that fast. This was also the last year Ford would have external horns on their cars. You had to spend an extra $20 if you wanted the tudor trunk style over the fordor fast back. Production totals were over 87,326 for the year. When the owners purchased it in 1993, it was from a very good friend who needed the money more than the car he loved. This good friend, who later passed away, was a professional mechanic with a vision for building classics. Another good friend of the owners has adopted this car and takes it to shows for them. Keeping this car original has led to great excitement among car buffs.
1932 Ford Roadster
This is what dreams are made of. This is a "Montana Fiber Teck Body" by Roger Krug. The great upholstery in this car was installed by Kirk's Upholstery located in Lockwood, Montana. Eric's Cylinder Service of Billings, Montana installed a 389 small block giving it all the power you will ever need. A 700R transmission was installed by Ron Struss of Big Sky Transmissions with a 8-inch Ford 373 posi rear end from Wes Nelson of Pro Fab Motor Sports. All Extra Chrome of Salt Lake City Utah did a great job producing show room chrome. The fabrication and assembly along with the paint by Reggie's Rod Shop, Reggie Dangerfield has 30 years as a primer body shop and "ROD" builder doing business in Billings, Montana.
The popularity of the '32 Ford roadster just keeps getting better. Age has nothing to do with it, 16 to 90 years we all love to get behind the wheel and cruise with the wind in our hair and an eye out for the local police patrols.
1956 Ford F-100
This 1/2 ton Ford Pickup was one of the best success stories Ford ever envisioned.
Built with heavy gauge metal, no way can you dent these trucks with a kick to the body. If you can find one of these trucks today, I would pick it over a 2018 any day of the week. Yes it was basic with no electric windows, carpet or a fancy heater, but the truck was everything you would want.
For 1956, Ford introduced the "Wraparound" windshield. This was also the year that the interstate highway became connected to a nation wide 41,000 miles to travel. The stock 272 c.i. V-8 engine
offered 167 b.h.p. The way it was geared you never had a lack of power. A newly designed grill and dash it gave it a "Back To The Future" look. The truck you are seeing has become an award winner from paint to the drive train.
In 2015 I purchased this 1970 C10. It had a Standard small block Chevy 350 that appeared old and used and covered in oil from leaky valve cover gaskets and who knows what else. The engine bay was yellow while the exterior paint was blue and the carburetor appeared older than me! I loved driving this truck and it quickly became my pride and joy. But after driving it for a year I quickly began to realize that the truck was lacking power and performance, so I began to transform the guts of this truck from mini to mighty. I began this journey by ripping every bit of the old Chevy 350 out and painting the engine bay black. I then purchased a small block Chevy 400 and had it bored 30 thousands over making it a virgin block. I then added a Crane Camshaft with .572 lift; transforming this engine to 406 cubic inches of basically a power-hungry gas guzzling motor begging to tear up some tires. After installing the engine, I also added a self-tuning Fitech EFI 600hp Throttle body for the finishing touch. My truck now glows both outside and under the hood thanks to some hard work and a little bit of elbow grease! Thanks, CMYRYD, for this opportunity to show off my pride and joy!
1967 Cadillac Convertible
One of the greatest gifts a man can give his best friends is something they will truly love. That is exactly what Ed did when he purchased this pink Cadillac for his wife in 1995. One of the challenges we face as restorationists, is to make it our own. Ed is a master body and paint specialist, so customization wasn’t a problem. With Cadillac excellence in mind, Betty chose high quality leather, the color and the ornamentation. This car has won many a “women’s choice awards”. This car is the most sought after for parades in Butte, from high school events to the famed, annual Evel Knievel Days. It remains a symbol of the great Elvis Presley. Even Bruce Springsteen had a hit in 1984 with a “Pink Cadillac.” The styling was state-of-the-art with its forward racked grill and front fenders. New features on the ‘67 included the Mylar instrument cluster, automatic levelers and a telescoping steering wheel for driver comfort. A price of $5,639.00 made this car a favorite of the well-to-do. The factory produced 18,202 Cadillacs, that was considered a successful run by GM top management.
1950 Ford Business Coupe
One of a kind mild custom coupe, the man & wife who own this car have put several hundred thousand miles on it. Before moving to Bozeman he was the President of a college in Florida. Upon retirement they decided to move to Montana where their children live. Ford only produced 35,120 making it one of the rarest collectible cars of the day. The new price at the time was only $1,333.00. The designers of the '50 Ford had creative an American icon in the world of classic cars. Trips to Montana and many car shows from coast to coast where it won many awards for a mild custom.
1934 Ford Coupe
This beautiful green 1934 Ford Roadster is the result of many hours of dedicated detail to what was once a “farm fresh” project car. The price paid was $250 in 1968, which at that time, was considered to be a lot of money. All of the body work, upholstery and paint were completed by the owner, Tom McGarry and his wife Rita. This car had a complete, frame-off restoration, at which time a 302 V/8 was installed using a C-4 transmission and an 8-inch rear end. When Ford produced these cars, they ran over 100 mph with their new flat head engine. They are as popular today as they were then.
1933 Buick Sedan Series 60
Buick has a long and storied history. A pioneer in the car market that blazed its way into the hearts of the American family for the next 90 years and still going strong. The 1933 Buick Victoria was to be one of the most elegant cars produced for its time. Featured in the book Hot Rods & Classics by Duane Demars on page 58. This car was sold new in Odgen, Utah in 1933. When you take on the task of restoration on a car this old, parts and trim can be very hard to come by. And yes, this car was rebuilt to 1933 factory specifications which included a coat rack behind the front seat as well as a "bud vase" for your flowers.
This all steel car would prove its worth in the years to come.
1964 Pontiac "GTO"
GTO = Gran Turismo Omologato (Grand Tourer)
The GTO made its mark in automotive history. It was designed by Mr. David North, chief designer for General Motors for 33 years. David is now retired and living in his home town of Billings, MT. The car you are looking at is just as it came from the factory with its tri-power, only the wheels have been changed. GM was all a buzz with excitement for this new GTO, which attracted a younger buyer with its style, power, and performance on the roadways of our great nation. It was to become the first of what would be known as the "Muscle Cars" of the '60s. The GTO package included a 4-speed floor shift, 389 V-8 with Tri-Power, optional. Quick steering, stiff shocks, dual exhaust and premium tires. Metallic brake linings, limited slip rear end and a heavy duty radiator. The driver just had to supply the lead foot along with a lot of gas which sold for $.30 per gallon in '64. This GTO sold for about $3250 off the production line. If you find a GTO you will have hit the jackpot.
1958 Chevrolet Impala
In Coffee Creek, Montana a good friend of mine purchased a new 1958 Impala, When he drove it over 100,000 miles, everyone was taken back, no one ever thought a car could go that far. Its still running and looks like new today. In 1958 Chevrolet underwent a major body update making it heavier, about by 600 pounds, it became longer by stretching the wheel base from 115 to 119 inches. Chevrolet was looking to a new market and found it with the all new designed Impala. Sadly to say, this body style would be a one year only for this great style. A not-so-new 348 big block was available that was a modified truck engine (which Chevy understandably failed to mention). The standard engine was a 283, 185 bhp. Chevrolet deserved credit for bucking the trend of tailfins in '58 however made up for it the following year. Today it is more popular than it was in 1958.
1950 Mercury Coupe
Perfection. A dream come true in the eyes of Ike Reisenauer and his wife Rita. Ike is a retired pipe fitter that has decided to follow his dream, designing his classic car and following up by touring this great United States taking in car shows. About a month after this photo was taken at Flathead Lake in western Montana it appeared in a spread of Good Guys publication.
They purchased this car in Dallas, TX, then drove it back to Casper, WY, where the restoration would take place. The top was chopped 5" before adding channel molding and frenching in the headlights and laker pipes. A Cleveland 351 engine coupled with a C-6 transmission. Cadillac hub caps just added that special touch. Cars of this quality are out there, but only a few will compete on this level.
1956 Ford Victoria Sunliner
It was a wonderful time in our lives when a car like the "Ford Victory" could be spotted a block away and we would immediately know what it was. A special thanks to the owner for many months of dedicated work to recreate this masterpiece. The 1956 received a mild face lift over the '55 along with a more powerful engine. Safety was a main concern with Ford with their new dished steering wheel and break-a-way rear view mirror. The crash proof door-locks and padded dash along with the sunvisors would add $16 to the price. Ford's suppliers could not keep up when it came to seat-belts, as a result only 20% of the cars had them. Over the next several years performance was stressed more than safety. The 272 was the standard V-8 producing 173 bhp, while the new 312 produced put out 225 bhp. Ford also offered a mid-range 292 that would make 200 bhp. You would pay about $2400 for this car back in 1956.
1956 Plymouth Belevdere Convertible
The designers were busy at work when they designed the '56 Plymouth, which introduced the forward look 'meaning the new tail fins.' Along with this came the new revolutionary pushbutton Powder Flight, a 12 Volt electrical system, with an optional Highway Hi-fi, a record player that used special platters with a tone arm that kept it in the groove on bumpy roads.
It was in late 1955 when Plymouth burst onto the scene with dramatic all new styling and a new V-8 power, exactly the tonic it needed. Modest fins sprouted from the rear fenders with the '56 models.
Later in the year Plymouth would introduce the Fury which was an upgrade with more power. It would do 0-60 in just 10 seconds and reach 110 mph. With a few tweaks it would run 145 mph on the Daytona speedway. For about $2475 you could buy a new convertible off the show room floor.
The Batmobile ... Made famous by "Adam West"
Yes, Billings has its own replica of this famous car, It is a 1966 crime-fighting machine that has become the most famous car in the world. Adam West was known as a super hero in his films during the 1960s on ABC with a career that spanned 63 years. No other actor ever played the part of Batman in any television series. H earned his Star for the Hollywood Walk of Fame as Batman. His other works included such titles "Lawman," "Cheyenne," "FBI Story," "Colt .45," and more recently, as a voice actor on "Family Guy." The famous Batman logo was used to light up the L.A. Harbor upon his death at age 88. In the early years, the Batmobile had no real name or any resemblance to the iconic car of today—it was bright red. After the car had its initial appearance it was made into the "Batmobile" as we now see it. George Barris of southern California was the genius car designer who did this work of art. Built on the frame of a concept Lincoln Futura, this car sold at the Barrett-Jackson auction for $4,620,000. The very first two Batmobile cars are owned by a doctor in Virginia and are un-restored, the 3rd is owned by a man in Arizona. If you were a child growing up in the days of "Batman & Robin" you will remember the good guys always would win. We would lay down on the floor by the radio mesmerized by the tales during his radio show.
1956 Ford F-100 1/2 Ton
Quality beyond most trucks. Many bold and true stories have been written about this truck - sustainability and working design. A major selling point was the height of the tail gate, 24 inches which allowed for better loading which was easier on the back. This I know to be true as I had a '56 on my ranch way back then. These trucks had the proven Ford V-8 for power. The bigger lure was the was that of the ruggedly tough but handsome styling the designer came up with. It was equipped with a set back front axle that gave it a nose heave look as though it was hunkering down. Ford emphasized safety with energy absorbing steering wheel and double grip door latches along with an all new 12-volt electrical system. A new grill, wrap around windshield with a wraparound back glass. The $1500 "Custom Cab" would be pocket change by today standards. I for one would love to once again own one of these trucks.
1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Hardtop
After 60 years there still is not a classic in this category that has been able to knock this car out of the number one spot. It has remained the crown jewel of General Motors throughout all these years. Expect to pay premium dollars to get one of these in any condition. The '57 was known as the definitive car of the '50s with its styling along with a choice of seven engines. Five of these were 283 V-8's ranging from 185 to 283 bhp. The last of these was a "Ram-Jet" fuel injection which added $500 to the cost, unfortunately it attracted very few buyers. It did give GM the bragging rights to claim 1 bhp per one cubic inch. The Corvette was a popular choice for the fuel injection. The Chevy equipped with a four-barrel 270 bhp could do 0 to 60 in 9.9 seconds. It could also cover the quarter mile in less than 17.5 seconds at over 110 mph. It became a star at NASCAR and other events when on the track it averaged 131.076 mph. Thru the next few years the Bel-Air received several accolades for its performance.
1969 Mach 1, Mustang
A "FORD" all the way! It's built for both men and women who enjoy high performance in their sport cars. We may have different tastes yet we respect great muscle cars whenever we see them. Where else can you get that great feeling of acceleration that sets you back in the seat. The Ford Mustang "Mach 1" made its debut in April of 1964. It was designed to attract a younger type of buyer. The 426 cid (7.0) Cobra Jet engine was introduced in late '68 in the GT models and the GT500KR. The color of this car is "Calypso" which was used only in 1969 and 1970. Ford produced 72,558 Mach 1 in 1969 which retailed for $3,139.00
1960 Mercury Hardtop
Who in their wildest dream would ever believe a car with this styling and quality would become a thing of the past. Sad but true, it happened here in the good old United States of America. Mercury could tell as far back as 1957 that they would have to change their way of designing cars as everyone was looking to the compact cars. They had so many old timers who still believed in the full size cars for both safety and room that handled the highway with ease. By 1960 compacts were ruling the highway and was the choice of the retired and new families due to the lower cost of operation. The '60 Mercury definitely had a bigger body and a four-inch longer wheelbase. Styling was still square but more sculptured, marked buy a mile wide grill, huge bumpers at both ends enormous front and rear windows. 1960 production would top 271,000 for a very good year. It is the opinion of the author that "Mercury" should never have been discontinued, it was a great car .
1949 Packard Coupe
A true barn find, well very close. The man who owns this car found it in the most unusual way, this business man purchased an old building in downtown Billings, Montana. The basement was full of the remnants of old construction equipment from days gone by. Try to picture in your mind construction debris eight feet deep, He told the seller if he had to clean it out he could also keep the spoils. After a few days of removing debris, they found a large tarp covering up something. Upon removal they found this '49 Packard underneath in perfect condition except for the hood where some form of fluid had destroyed the paint. After a short time at the body shop followed by a detail shop it arrived at a local car show. This car sat on a 127 inch wheelbase and came with a 282 cid engine producing 120 bhp straight eight. It was considered a true luxury car for its time. Its style remained traditional with an upright sloping radiator and a chisled hood. Craftsmanship was excellent on all models. FOB factory pricing ranged from $3900 to $4800 depending on the Packard model.
1956 Chevy 1/2 Ton Just look at what you can do with a truck, the sky is the limit. Out west we have a way of life that includes at least one truck per family along with our other cars. The choice we make reflects our life style. This '56 you see has had major renovation, built in southern California using a 78 Camaro frame, channeled in the rear so it could accommodate a five-inch drop. Air suspension was added allowing this truck to be lowered within two inches of the ground. The frame will only have a 1/2 inch clearance at the door. Original wheels have been replaced with Foose wheels, 18-inch in the front and 19-inch in the rear. The engine is a 305 Chevy small block coupled with a 350 Turbo Automatinc Transmission. The truck bed is solid oak flooring with all new chrome and the latest digital dash. The paint that was chosen is a Pearl White 3-stage giving that appearance of 3-D depth.
1948 Frazer Sedan
Early in 1945, Frazer was looking for a partner who also was loaded with money, along came Henrey J. Kaiser of the West Coast who was also interested in building cars. A 1947 Frazer Manhattan was to be the car for the masses built to be what every family may need in a car. Joseph Frazer came from a very rich family and had a desire to build his own line of cars. He felt the time was right as the war was over and production of cars had been halted for the war effort. His Frazer Manhattan sold for just $2712 at the production plant. The Frazer offered a very large interior at 64 inches, its front seat was one of the largest in production. Well over 80% of its total width was for passenger comfort. It would be 1951 before Frazer would be able to offer an automatic transmission. It is very rare to find one of these cars today to even restore. Only 36,120 of these cars were were built for 1947 production.
1957 Ford Thunderbird
This '57 Ford Thunderbird proved to be the fun sports car he always wanted. The special "diamond black exterior & white diamond leather exterior"would make any owner proud. This car also has three tops for you to enjoy depending what you desire for the day. New for 1957 Thunderbird styling were a redesigned bumper and grille along with a 312 c.i.d 285 bhp. The tail lights were canted and were special for the 1957 Bird. Optional port holes on the top along with the spare tire could be on the outside.
1950 Mercury Coupe Full Custom
Enduring the test of time - even after 67 years this car is still desired by collectors. A product of Ford Motor Company, it was built to withstand every type of abuse mother nature could throw at it. The Desota grill was a popular add-on even to this day. These cars were chopped, dropped, lowered, well to say it all, it was a dream machine to customize. When Ike & Rita found this car for sale it was in Dallas, Texas. They drove from Casper, Wyoming to buy it. In doing so they had a bonus when they met the owner of the Dallas Cowboys. They are now retired and have a very nice motor home with an enclosed trailer to keep their baby in.
1957 Chevrolet Bel Air
The classic that never faded from the most popular of all cars. What ever kind of car you ever wanted, this was it. Style, comfort, ride, speed, room and a very low cost of operation. Thru the years we have chopped, lowered, removed emblems and just made it our own. From the 1955, 56, 57 these cars became know as the "double nickel cars". These cars command our attention more now than when they were in the show rooms around our nation. Sometimes the story of how a person ends up with a car can also be very intersting. Upon returning to Montana to the family farm he just parked this car next to the barn where it sat for the next 25 years. The car could be seen from the road and thru the years many have stopped to buy it. He was getting tired of this as every week at least one person would stop. Then one cold morning while at the local town cafe out of frustration he said I'm going to sell that Chevy just to get it out of my hair, another man overheard him and asked what he wanted for it. He thought for a moment and said $6000, the other man said "sold" and paid him on the spot. This car sold new for $2,229 with only 166,500 made.
1970 Oldsmobile 442
There were many muscle cars produced during the '60s and '70s that would become the most sought after classics of our time. Oldsmobile produced just such a car with its 442. This car came with a 455 cid V-8 putting out 370 bhp. Oldsmobile came up what could best termed a cartoon character when they were marketing the 442 AS Doctor Oldsmobile W-Machine. There were quite a few problems due to the governments new emission control standards. Fortunately, GM had the type that the buying public wanted. They were in the top 10 in the nation. This was only one of 830 produced with a Hurst 4 - speed. New selling price was $3,151,00.
1966 Ford Thunderbird
It was a very proud moment for the top brass at Ford when the 1966 Ford Thunderbird first came off of the production line. The styling was superb with its full width tail lights and its cruise control and steering wheel buttons. Only 5049 of these 1966 Ford Thunderbirds were built. Unique to this car was the 428 cid power plant upgrade for just $64 when ordered new. It also came with real leather seats, three-tone paint with Candy Apple Red. It was a bitter cold day when the present owners made the trip to Ohio to haul this car to Montana. It sold new in Gary, Indiana for $4,734.23 and still has matching numbers. Clay & Joyce Busch of Stanford, Montana are the proud owners.
1947 Willys C-J 2 A Jeep
This Jeep was the civilian version of the world famous "Jeep" that helped us win World War II. A few minor changes had to be made after the war. The war version had eleven leafs per spring, that was reduced to seven leafs, the 4-inch headlights that folded to light up the engine were replaced by large headlights. A tail gate and a brake light was added with the spare being moved to the side. During WW II all production of vans, trucks and tractors were halted as the iron was used for the war effort. Willys sold these Jeeps as an Ag Jeep, it was then used on the farms across America until production of large tractors could once again hit the ag market. You could get up to 14 pieces of equipment - from plows to buzz saw's. The radiators were about 4 inches thick for farming, so if you did add a heater you would never get any heat out of it. If this were today, OSHA would have a fit. The best after market heater was a Gas Heater that sat next to the gas tank, by the way the driver also sat on top of the tank. It would keep you warm and also reduce your mileage to 4 mpg. Lewistown, Montana sold more Jeeps in 1947 and 1948 than any other city in the nation.
1961 Corvette Convertible
When talking to Corvette owners they mostly agree that this is the true Corvette with the solid rear axel. Corvette nationwide is considered the true American Sports Car. I agree to that having owned a total of 86 cars from the time I was in high school. Only one of them happened to be a Corvette. The 1961 with its external trunks were history after 1962, these trunks allowed for space to secure golf clubs and other personal items. The overall construction of the '61 Corvette was considered the best in history for quality of those built in Saint Louis. In 1957, General Motors went along with a ban on factory participation auto racing. Corvettes had to find a way to satisfy both the racing driver and also the person who just wanted street performance. To purchase a Corvette of this year you can pay from $50,000 and on up, that is if you can find one for sale. Serial numbers range from 10867S100001 to 10867S110939.
1929 American LaFrance Fire Truck
America has a long tradition of honoring the courage and dedication of our firefighters. Ron Lucero of South Ogden, Utah decoded to restore this old 1929 American LaFrance, it was more than just a fire truck. It became a way to preserve our heritage. The restoration took nine years to complete. The seat was comprised only of a frame.
It was built in Elmira, New York in 1929, it can pump 750 gallons per minute. Its water tank would only hold 60 gallons of water making it completely dependent on fire hydrants. The body is 22 feet in length and a full 7 feet in width. It is powered by a 150 horse power 6 cylinder in line engine. It has a brass bell for the driver to ring while on the way to a fire along with the siren. "This fire truck is a tribute to all our firefighters" past and present.
1964 Ford Fairlane 500
A rare one, indeed. This Ford Fairlane 500 Sport Coupe is completely stock. This car has all matching numbers, paint, power train, upholstery. Out of 21,431 sport coupes produced in 1964 only 4000 carried the "K Code." Only 110 were known to have survived. The Guardsman Blue is the original factory color. The sport coupes came with a sportier trim, bucket seats and a console and gauges. It was equipped with a "289 Hipo engine." On the drag strip it was a strong competor against the Chevrolet 409. This car sold for about $2500
1951 Chevrolet Sedan Delivery
Yes, this is a true story, It was the fall of 1978. Mick's dad had been looking for a Sedan Delivery to use in his business to make deliveries of flowers. He wanted this to look like the one that he and his bride started the business with. It needed a ton of body work, which proved to be the tip of the iceberg to make it what it is today. Just four months later Mick's dad passed away. The job now would become the task of the family to make his dream come true. To give you an idea what they were faced with, both doors were welded shut, the bumpers were also welded on and the roof was caved in. The old 216 cid engine was in need of major work, from the looks of the oil it had never been changed. It now runs like a dream with the old 3-speed on the steering wheel. Mick called upon his friends with the Big Sky Street Rod Assoc. to help. In just 45 days, this sedan delivery was up and running, all painted along with graphics and lettering. How did it get its name ? Mick's "MOM" was the driver with 3 kids in tow in the back end while flowers were being delivered around town. What better name than "PANIC WAGON" could you come up with. This Delivery Van represented the first Christmas with out their dad, "The Founder" and to their mom Betty, The "Panic Wagon Driver."
1950 Ford Business Coupe
This is the body style that every classic car enthusiast searches for when he or she wants the true 60's show car. To find one would be like winning the lottery. This American Icon that you are looking at has over 400,000 miles on it. The couple who own this car lived in Florida where he was the president of a university, upon his retirement they made their last trip to Montana where their children live. Trips back and forth wore out two or three engines over the years. This car would be considered a mild award winning custom, at first it was purchased as a daily driver while he restored his '32 Ford. The car now has a 267 V-8 Chevy engine with a 700 RA overdrive transmission and an 8-inch 3.55:1 rear end. More than 40,000 have been driven going to car shows coast to coast. They plan to enjoy this jewel for many years to come.
1956 Airstream Luxury Trailers
The first Airstream was built in the 1920s in a backyard out of Masonite by a student lawyer by the name of Wally Byam. It was in southern California where the weather was warm year round. The name was not given to it until 1936, over 80 years ago. The rounded design of this trailer made it very aerodynamic when pulling on the highway, cross winds did not affect it. The fuselage was like that of our airliners. It received its name after the very first trans-Atlantic seaplane. During the great depression of 1936, there were over 400 trailer builders, yet only Airstream survived. Airstream had a guideline for who would be the best prospect to buy an Airstream. If you drove a Chevrolet you might afford the smallest trailer, if you drove a Oldsmobile you were considered more likely to purchase the next step up in size.
After World war II, Airstream Parks sprang up and the public had a new form of recreation. A major buyer was the military who would place them in the cargo hold and would have an Airstream to stay in where ever they were.
1957 Ford "Thunderbird"
The wind in your hair and the warm sun are just what the Doctor ordered for a nice Sunday drive with your favorite girl. Mine happens to be my wife of 58 years. The two major sports cars of the '50s were the Corvette and the Thunderbird, both great cars made to express who we really are, and the youth we never want to lose. Restyled for 1957, the Thunderbird was given a new grill and front bumper. This Bird came with the optional 312 cid engine with had 285 bhp. This became one of the most recognized iconic sports cars of the year, it has been on postage stamps, television, movies and advisements. Ford GM Lewis Crusoe could not understand why we could not have a sports car like Europe had at the "Paris Auto Show." Crusoe asked Designer George Walker about it. He made a call to Michigan and told them he wanted a sports car by the time they got back from the Paris show. It had been on hold for some time. This T-Bird came with bucket seats, hard top and a soft top which was a power top. Many options like push button radio, automatic windshield wipers, Dial-O-Matic power seat which controlled the volume of the radio. The T-Bird could hit 146.3 mph, during the Daytona Speed Weeks, although speed wasn't what the new Bird was all about. Rather it was a stylish, luxurious, upper-middle-class cruiser. Yes, this was the perfect car to give your girlfriend or wife for a cruise up-town for showing off.
1991 Buick Reatta Hard Top
Very few men can say they gave their wife a car that they designed and walked through the assembly line at General Motors. This was a one and only Montana "Sky Blue" color made special for his wife "Pat." This is no ordinary man, David North was retiring as "Chief Designer" having spent thirty-three wonderful years in this position. We often wonder where a car gets its name, In this case David and his wife loved a western movie called "Giant," she also helped him with the nominating of the brand name. This is a sports car that seats two with ample leg room, and comes in both a convertible and a hard top model. The "touch instrument panel" was unique to the industry in '91. Those at Buick knew this car was being made for David & Pat and went out of their way to do some very special enhancements that would not be on cars for the next several years. Of the many cars they were privileged to have owned this was a "keeper" and will always be known as "Pats Car."
1923 Ford T-Bucket
1923 Ford T-Bucket The 1923 Ford Model "T", one of the greatest cars of all time for the car buff to work on. Far more of these cars have been the project of the chop shop than ever were restored to their production glory. As we all know the final image is in the eyes of the beholder. Components of this car will show up with a Harley-Davidson under it or yes, even a VW Bug. The 1923 T-Bucket in the photo has a General Motors 406 big block that has been stroked and bored. The Dino has peaked this mill at 460 bhp. This car was purchased unfinished about 12 years ago. It's Fast , try zero to sixty in just 1.5 seconds. Henry Ford was in heaven when the first Ford Model "T" rolled off the production line in 1922. He tilted the windshield back a slight bit on the runabout model. If you wanted an electric starter with an ammeter that would cast an extra $65. Most of these cars sold for about $298 & $295, compare that to today's price. The Turing car and the Runabout accounted for about 2/3 of all their sales.
1959 Triumph TR3A The Triumph was a great sports car that gained world wide acceptance. It was in the month of June 1984 that production came to a halt in England. The production company Leyland would close all production plants for the last time. The company had a long history of manufacturing some of the world's most beautiful sports cars. It was in 1983 that a German by the name of Siegfried Bettmann decided to move to England. His first venture was a bicycle factory. The White Sewing Machine Company gave him the operating capital to get started. Business was good until the end of World War I, at that time the Japanese entered the market with motorcycles which dried up the profit that they were making their living with. In the 1860s there was a demand for cheap cars in England. 59 different car companies sprang up about the same time. Triumph was one of them with a new factory that produced the cars that the public demanded. Its sad to say however their cost of production did them in.
1964 Ford F-100 Custom Cab
Pickups like this never rolled off the production line unless it was for the CEO of Ford Motor Company. The owners of this truck purchased it new and treated it like one of the family. Jonas' dad ordered it with the factory 292cid V-8 & limited slip differential. Factory options included the spotlight and the AM radio. Now is when you wish you lived in the good old days, the price new was just $1979.49. In 1964 Ford offered a wide selection of pickups, Chevrolet tried to match them one-for-one which made for some great competion. The Ford's styleside box featured a double wall design which prevented the loads from ever making dents to the outer box panels. This was the first pickup to have a lever in the center to release the tail gate. This new F-series made available options like Air Conditioning, two tone paint. Another great feature was the tail gate height of just 24 inches, a far cry from the new pickups of today. White side wall tires were common on all F-100 pickups. Owner; Tim & Joan Sleeth Billings, Montana
1948 Chevrolet Suburban The future was upon us with this type of transportation. This Suburban was restored by a master rebuilder who has done many show cars in the past. With only 36,000 original miles, this 216 cid six-cylinder was still like new. This old engine had small cups at the end of the connecting rods to pull the oil up to the engine. Unlike most engines it was void of an oil pump, the later 262 six-cylinder motors did have an oil pump. The transmission was a four speed with a very low first gear. The factory radio and fog lights were factory options along with the sun visor over the windshield. Mark Tronstad of Billings, Montana restored this classic to factory specifications in 2014.
1950 Hudson Pacemaker Coupe
Hudson used the term "Step Down" for their lower look of the 50s. It referred to the dropped floor pan surrounded by steel frame girders. The Supermatic were applauded for toughness and handling, as well as a smooth highway ride. When Hudson introduced the Pacemaker coupe, it accounted for almost half of the 1950 production of their cars. The Pacemaker used a 232 cid 112 bhp in-line six cyl engine. An available option in 1950 was the Super-six 123 horsepower aluminum cylinder. You could have your choice of three transmissions, mechanical overdrive, Drive Master, and new Supermatic, which had a new crusing gear with a button on the dash, which allowed you to shift gears by just letting up on the gas. "Step Down" meant that you would sit within the Monobilt frame, with box-section steel frame on all sides for safety. This was a full six passenger sedan with the most room of any car built to date. With a price of $1959 you would pay just $ .56 per pound to buy this car.
2014 Shelby Cobra GT500
"Yes" its fast by any standards, when you add a 662 bhp power plant you better hold on to the seat of your pants and grit your teeth. The electronic Line-Lock is a special feature that should be used only on the track. This feature allows for you to keep the front brakes locked up which will allow you to smoke the rear tires for a solid quick start. The launch control will integrate the brakes, traction control along ensuring a smooth consistent start. The message center will provide instance performance metrics in the center of your instrument cluster. You know there is power when your car provides longitudinal g-forces and acceleration times plus automatic and countdown starts. Some drivers like to adjust their powersteering. You have 3 options, Normal, Sport settings and comfort. The fun just gets better with the manual six speed transmission. It is the smooth shifting that the owners like the most.
1953 Studebaker Champion
What a wonderful custom this car has become, only a master craftmen can pull this off and make it flawless. This car started off as a 2-door hardtop, Ron chopped the top 4 1/2 inches and made a flush mounted windshield, the rear window was slanted back 7 inches and made up with 3 fabricated pieces. It takes a lot of time to flare all four fenders to perfection. A new trunk lid had to be fabricated along with hawk fins and a Mustang spoiler. A Mustang 3rd tail light and Chrsyler door handles. Century rear view mirrors, the front end was nosed & decked along with smoothed bumpers. A special engine cover was fabricated. Power windows and seat along with keyless entry and a new alarm system was added. Montana weather requires both a heater and air-conditioning. A few of the add-ons were a cruise control, 8 speaker sound system and a complete Cobra interior. Firewall and transmission tunnel Mustang, Jaquar independent suspension front and rear. Also added were power steering, 4 wheel disc brakes, 3:03 posi, 4.6 L -4 overhead cam 32 valve engine. 5 speed Tremec transmission, remote twin oil filters - 9 quarts, complete EPA emissions.
Donar cars that were used: 1953 Studerbaker, 1986 Jaguar XJS and 1999 Mustang Cobra.
Paint: House of Color Kandy Tangerine, Black PPG Concept, 18 Gold Leaf strip.
Complete build/design by Ron Tesinsky / Westside Customs, Billings, MT
1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Hardtop
Red as Red can be. That is what this stunning Bel Air is. They say beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, make no mistake this car makes us all beholders. Many '57s have been restored, however few have obtained the clean, crisp elegance this car has became. The selection of engines were no less than six V-8's from 185 to 283 bhp. The 283 was courtesy of "Ramjet" a fuel injected engine. Their were few takers at $500 per add-on, it did however give GM the bragging rights for 1 bhp per cubic inch. The Bel Air Sport Sedan equipped with a four barrel 270 bhp would do 0 to 60 in just 9.9 seconds. Peddle to the metal in the quarter mile you would reach 110 mph in 17.5 seconds. We all look for a good buy in life, this car new was only $.70 per pound.
1951 Ford F-1 1/2 Ton Pickup Built to last at a time when there were few garages to work on them. White sidewall tires were a common site on pickups of this era. This '51 Ford had a facelift with a new grille and hood trim. The box underwent a change from a steel floor to a wood floor. The stock engine was a 239 cid V-8 which was rated at 100 bhp. For 1951, Ford offered a total of three engines to choose from. This newly designed cab with its one piece windshield was referred to as a million dollar cab. This was also the first year the name tag "F-1" was used. A selling point was that the tail gate was only 24 inches off the ground. It seems like everyone I talk to is looking for a 1948 to 1951 to restore. A personal note: I drove a 1950 Ford 1/2 ton during High School while living on a ranch 40 miles from town, dirt and gravel roads and it held up like it was a tank.
Shelby Cobra Replica The story as I was told. Lets call this a "Fathers Love." This car started out about a couple years ago in a secret location in Billings, Montana. This Father wanted to give his son a very special gift when the day came that he would be married. I was told this car was moved around and hidden like a child playing Hide & Seek with all of his or her friends. This car was truly built with all the compassion and love of detail a father could put into it. Rest assured that I was told about this from one of the many who had a part in making this a reality. Some may make a feeble attempt at a task like this, not this father, he did it right addressing every small detail to perfection. I was informed the son is on active duty as a Commander in the United States Navy. I believe the wedding has now taken place and this was the father's gift to his son and his new bride.
1961 Studebaker Hawk The "Hawks" were the last Studebakers to be designed by the legendary "Loewy's team." They were good looking and a blast to drive. They operated on curves like a true sports car and hugged the highway at high speeds. The Hawks were descendants of one of the most popular of all, the Starlight Coupe. The 1961 Hawk was up-dated receiving two-tone color panels and a four-speed gear box. Brooks Stevens was given the task to take over the design as an outsider of the "Hawks." One major change was the Mercedes-style grille, Studebaker was distributing "Mercedes-Benz" at the time. The optional 225 bhp would give this Hawk a top speed of 120 mph and 0-60 in less than 10 seconds.
1939 Plymouth This was a workingman's car. Good reliable transportation that became the staple of the American dream. Most of these cars got about ten miles per gallon with an average speed of about fifty-five mph. Gas was about 10 cents per gallon and a quart of oil around 8 cents. When my wife was in High School in 1954, her parents had a car like this. She and her girlfriend would cruise around all evening on $ .50 cents worth of gas. The present owner has kept this car all factory and looking like it did in 1939. In that year many body types were available, coupes with or with out the Rumble seat (many would call it the Mother-in-Law seat). For 1939, that one year only Plymouth would offer a convertible with a rumble seat. A car like this sold for about $740 at the dealerships, by the end of World War II this car would sell for over $900. Plymouth. Ford & Chevrolet made up the top three cars in the United States. Back in the 30s Plymouth "Binder Twine" was used on almost every farm in America. That is the origin of the name Plymouth for automobiles...not Plymouth Rock.
1930 Desoto I was the bride of Mr. Chrysler and Mrs. Plymouth. I came with 18-inch wheels and a six-cylinder engine. My air conditioner would consist of six windows down at 30 miles per hour. My new parents thought I should get a face lift to compete with the big boys, and here I am. My power train now has a 1978 440 cid with 1971 heads, I'm hopped up just a little with being bored .030 and with a Isky Cam. I added a Mopar suspension with a Volare front clip and a massive 30-gallon fuel tank. Talk about hard times, I have a touch of road rash, but I'm not to bad for one who was "born" when there were only 48 staties and has survived Prohibition, the Great Depression, and World War II. Added to that were several armed conflicts and 15 Presidents. I have earned my scratches and worn tires as I have traveled all over this great United States of America. I am proud that my owner went to war to defend our way of life. God Bless America.
1932 Ford Pickup, The "Deuce"
Fords from 1932 are known as "Deuce" to the world of car lovers. There are national meets for the "Deuce's" that bring thousands together for reunions. The '32 probably has been customized and modified more than any other car. It is considered the ultimate hot rod or better known as the holy grail of hot rod builders everywhere.
OSHA would have fits if today they mounted the gas tank under the drivers seat like they did in '32. When production commenced in March 1932, a powered V-8 model was a sensation from the word go. It was the start of the end of the four cylinder as it was soon to fade into the history books. Introducing a new car in 1932 would prove a real challenge as this was the worst year for the great depression. Very few people had a desire to purchase a new car or truck, however the V-8 gave them a leg up on the other makes.
The marketing department only had in mind to sell the V-8 to the car buyers, that was until the truck buyers wanted it. Ford caved in and the rest is history.
1954 Chevrolet Two Door Post - Bel Air
With a major face lift in 1964, GM sales increased over the previous year. The Bel Air was considered the top of the line and came with a high compression Blue Flame Six that produced 115 brake horsepower. Unlike the old 216 cid these engines now have oil pumps for greater performance. Chevy set the standards for automobile production with the World War II in the past. Over 1.17 million cars & trucks were sold during 1954, a welcome release to GM stockholders. Though sound and reliable the '54 lacked in excitement for style. With the coming of the V-8 that would change. The basic body style of Chevy starter in 1949 and would continue until the last production car of 1954.
1934 Ford 3 - Window Coupe
There is something about the color red, when it is on a '34 Ford like this it stands out even more. I may place a different picture in our mind when we look at a street rod. Maybe this is what keeps us young at heart. Time doesn't diminish that feeling just because a gray hair may show up. You may describe a car like this as perfection.
A 1934 Ford 3 window coupe is the most sought after of all cars. This classic has a Kugel front suspension with disk brakes. The newly upholstered Ford Bronco seats is a great added touch. Want power? This has a 427 cid Chevy with a turbo 400 automatic transmission and a Corvette rear end.
1956 Ford F-100 1/2 Ton Pickup.
When this truck was made, Ford Motor Company made the height of the tail gate a main selling point by being just 24 inches off the ground. Ford knew that if they did their job they would not have to worry about Chevrolet. The wrap around windshield and the option of a large back window gave this truck a "Back To The Future" look. The larger 272 cubic inch V-8 offered 167 brake horse power. The Canadian version of this truck was called a Mercury. This truck possesses quality that would never be repeated in later years. Seat belts were just made available however very few ever ordered by the dealers do to the cost which added about $9 to the base price.
For the collector this is a crown jewel that the person restoring can do so many different things.
1957 Chevrolet BelAir Hardtop (The dream car)
This car had such special styling that everyone seemed to fall in love with it. True love is very hard to explain, yet this car could make it happen. You could say this is a mild custom with its Twilight Royal Metallic paint, Edelbrock Performer 50-100 Nitrous System, 2 inch Ceramic headers into 2.5 inch Flowmaster exhaust, GM 12 bolt positraction rear end. IDITTI polished steering tilt column, and the list goes on and on.
Chevy earned the term as the definitive car of the 50s. The new car buyer had a choice of seven engines, five of these were V-8s ranging from 185 to 283 bhp. One of these was introducing the "Ram-Jet" engine for a hefty $500 extra, sad to say but very few were ordered at that cost. A challenge for Chevy was to make a two year old body look fresh for the 1957 production year. A new cowl proved to be an expensive change. "Finny" would be the best way to describe the rear end with its several pointed fender tips. Properly equipped, the '57 Chevy was a formidable track competitor. NASCAR was one of the events where Chevy did very well.
1966 Ford Thunderbird Convertible
Fun in the sun & wind in your hair, it doesn't get any better than this. The 1966 Ford Thunderbird proved to be a game changer in the automotive field. Thunderbird styling was superb with its full width tail lights, cruise control and steering wheel buttons which were offered as an option. This car is a true classic with only 5,049 convertibles produced. This car has the 428 cid engine that Ford offered for $64 extra and was rated at 345 bhp. But the desirability of this car doesn't end there, it has red leather seats, Candy Apple Red paint with three tone red-on-red interior. When you get a classic car that is 50 years old and still has matching numbers, it's rare. A popular accessory was the swing away steering wheel and the swivel drivers seat. With a price tag of $4879 the price per pound was just $1.09 per pound.
1957 Oldsmobile Starfire Hardtop
A great car just floats down the road at 100 miles per hour. To this day the author can not understand why General Motors would discontinue this great line of cars. They had style and grace and were built with great quality. The Ninety Eights were the top of the line, perhaps they were just too good. The Rocket V-8 engine was equal in quality to the Buick Nail Head engine. It was a 371.1 cid with 277 brake horse power. An option was the Tri-Power (three carbs) lifting the bhp to 300. The wide mouth grille was restyled, the windshield pillars were reshaped with more of an angle. A stainless steel sweepspear would start at the beltline and flow to the rear for an ideal two-tone area ending with the tail lights. Only 17,791 of this model were produced with a cost of $.92 per pound.
1986 Chevrolet Pickup ... "A Hot Ride"
This pickup was acquired in 2000, the best part of the purchase was all the parts were there. Most buyers would think it came from a salvage yard, but not a person with forward vision. This was an opportunity to make he dream truck that comes about once in a lifetime. The frame-off took three years to complete. It now has a 502 cid with a 871 blower and electronic fuel injection system. They installed an ATI turbo 400 transmission with a 4:11 Mark Williams rear end. This truck was clocked at 127 on an old airport runway with power to spare. This truck has came a long way from the "three on the tree" with a "six cylinder engine".
1956 Oldsmobile 98 Holiday Sedan
The "Rocket Circle" on top of the dash was an option offered from 1956 to 1960 by General Motors. It was for preferred customers which allowed a place for your initials and the number of Oldsmobiles the customer has owned to date. The engine was a 324 cid Oldsmobile Rocket V-8 producing 230 bhp. The transmission was a Jetway Hydra-Matic which gave it a snooth start and good mileage. 1956 brought about a "Panoramaic" wrap around windshield, power brakes and power steering. Distinctive spinner wheel caps to Old's were soon to be copied by most all automotive cars on the road. The 1956 gains a large gaping "mouth" front grill inspired by the 1953 Starfire Car Show. All models that were produced totaled 485,000 and sold for about $3,480 or about $ .85 per pound. Two and three tone paint were all the rage.