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Part 2: Chop Top and Bodywork
I stripped the body from the frame and took tons of measurements to find what front suspension would be most suitable. Being a poor teacher in the cold Midwest, innovation came into play...(note kitchen chair jack stands...an investment that could have saved a hernia operation later!).
The 4 1/2" chop came first. I figured if I messed up the body, I could always use the frame on something else! I'd never chopped a custom before so I planned it on paper and marked it to the body with masking tape. I made the cuts with a jigsaw. What a job! The purchase of a sawzall would be in the future! In the pictures you can see the rake chop and how I had to add material for length as the top came down. It tapers from 4 1/2" in front to about an inch in the rear. I made the doors pillarless by welding the doorposts to the body and rolling the lip inward for power windows.
The compound curves of the 'J were a challenge, and I moved many lines to recreate the car. I lowered the body by mounting the Mustang II suspension farther up into the frame. I smoothed out the front fender bodyline by cutting it out and re-welding it back together flush, thus shortening up the fender -- similar to sectioning but not really befitting the definition of the term. I shaved all the trim as well as the drip rails. I welded the rear fenders on and the seams shut. I extended the rear fenders down and rolled the scoops around the tires. I added a sunken license box, tunneled the taillights and frenched the headlights with mid-50's Ford bezels. After removing door and trunk handles, electric remotes were installed.
Click here for Part 3: Custom Hood Scoop
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