Tag Archives: troy ladd

  • Hollywood Hot Rods- How To Chop a Mercury with help from Eastwood

    Chopping a Mercury with help from Eastwood
    By Jim Aust/Hollywood Hot Rods

    Every since the first sleek new 1949 Mercury hit the street crafty restylers have lusted after examples with the roof a bit lower than the factory offerings. Sam Barris was among the first to chop his own personal Mercury, and the process would be repeated thousands of times over the next seven decades. Just as the title “custom” means, personally designed customs each have a unique style and equally unique method of creation.

    The guys at Hollywood Hot Rods have built a series of much loved custom vehicles so it’s only natural that they would have chopped a few Mercury’s along the way. Refining the process to a science, Hollywood Hot Rods get the job done lowering a lid on a Mercury (or any vehicle) with the help of various tools from The Eastwood Company. For this demonstration an Eastwood Shrinker/Stretcher is used to a few of the vital steps in the process completed. Follow along as Hollywood Hot Rods shows how they lowered a roof on this 1951 Mercury.

    Chopping the top on a Mercury is so popular at Hollywood Hot Rods that they have to wait in line for their turn under the knife.

    The easy part is removing the top, the tough part is putting it back on correctly.

    After lowering the roof the desired amount, the corners of the windows now require reworking to close up the gaps created in the process.

    This view shows the great deal of work that will be necessary to reshape the rear corners of the quarter windows.

    The first step is to trim out the rear corners so that new corners can be fitted in place.

    To fill the corners small strips of sheet metal are cut and folded 90-degees in a sheet metal brake.

    Next up the Eastwood Shrinker/Stretcher is used to shrink one edge of the custom new pieces to replicate the look of the factory corners in the newly required radiuses.

    The newly fabricated pieces are carefully fit into in the trimmed out window corners.

    The new window corners are tacked in place and checked again for proper placement before final welding is completed.

    Once the final welding is finished the corners are shaped with a die grinder equipped with a barrel drum sanding head.

    On this particular chop the decision was made to round-off the upper rear door corners rather than retain the square factory style corners.

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    Rather than cut the original door corners into multiple pieces, Hollywood Hot Rods prefers to create new sweeping corner from fresh sheet metal.

    Repeating the earlier process, new inner door corners are made with the Eastwood Shrinker/Stretcher. Once the new door corners are in place they are welded and smoothed the same way as the window corners.

    Just a few steps transformed this Mercury from a stocker to show stopper! Hit the Hollywood Hot Rods Website to see more of their work, enlist their services, or buy some sweet HHR gear!

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  • 2012 Street Rodder 40 Ford Road Tour Car Debuted

    The last time we checked in on the Street Rodder 40 Ford build, the crew at Hollywood Hot Rods was putting the final touches on the car and tuning the engine.

    Recently Street Rodder debuted the car at the Hollywood Hot Rods headquarters in Burbank, CA. They kept the guests baited by keeping the car covered up until after Troy Ladd and the SR crew said a few words. We were lucky enough to get a few behind-the-scenes shots of the event.

    All in all the car came out great and the roof chop that Troy and his crew performed with the help of Eastwood Metal Fabrication Tools looked spot-on. The metallic paint was flawless and the Ford Racing V8 sounded fantastic through those individual throttle bodies!

    Jerry Dixey is a lucky man and by now is already cruising the west coast in the Ford on the first legs of the 2012 Street Rodder Road Tour. Make sure you watch this space for full coverage as Eastwood and Street Rodder kick off the East Coast leg of the Road Tour at the annual Eastwood Summer Classic on July 14th! If you're local make sure you cruise out and see some of the best classic cars in the Mid-Atlantic and catch some great deals on Eastwood products!

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  • Street Rodder Road Tour 1940 Ford Nearing Completion- reassembling a 1940 Ford

    The last time we checked in with Street Rodder and Hollywood Hot Rods the paint on the body was still wet. Since then they've been busy getting the car ready for the first leg of the Street Rodder Road Tour and it's unveiling this weekend. We got these sneak peeks from the crew over at Street Rodder Magazine just the other day.

    After rolling the car back to Hollywood Hot Rods from the paint shop, Troy and crew were ready to start buckling down and assemble the Ford. This is the fun part most times, but it is a tedious process installing all of those freshly painted, chromed, and powder coated parts!

    With the exterior starting to look pretty complete, they moved on to the interior. The team decided to go for a classy, but custom retrim in the 40 Ford. They had some help from a local interior shop to help them meet the deadlines, but it is coming together great. We are loving the color-matched piping details, it really pulls it all together!

    With the Ford looking more like a complete car Troy and his crew moved on to mounting up the drivetrain and making the new Ford Racing Coyote V-8 crate engine live. They opted to go with electronic fuel injection to get the most power out of the engine AND the best fuel mileage possible (for a flowed 5L 302 Mustang Boss Engine that is!). Instead of screwdrivers, carb synchs, and their ears, these guys are using a computer to tune the engine so this car will run as well as the latest pony car from the Ford stable.

    With things really coming down to the line for the Road Tour and the debut this weekend the team at Hollywood Hotrods is really buckling down. Stay tuned for the finished pictures of this beautiful 40 Ford and make sure you come out to the kickoff of the east coast leg of the tour on July 14th at the Eastwood Summer Classic! Thanks for watching and we'll see you in July!

    -Matt/EW

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  • Street Rodder Road Tour 2012 Car in Paint

    It seems like just yesterday we were visiting with the lads at Hollywood Hot Rods and the Street Rodder Road Tour 1940 Ford Project. We recently got some updates from Troy and the crew at Street Rodder Magazine and wanted to keep Eastwood fans up to speed.

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    With some help from Eastwood metal working tools the crew at Hollywood Hot Rods finished the chop on the 40 Ford. They recently sent it off to have a fresh coat of paint sprayed onto the car. Below is a spy picture of the tub still in the booth! It should be on its way back to Hollywood Hot Rods shortly for them to work some more of their magic and get the car roadworthy. Stay tuned for more updates along the way and be sure to come see the car in person at the 2012 Eastwood Summer Classic. This year you can be one of the first to see it in person as we kickoff the East Coast Street Rodder Road Tour!

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  • Eastwood Visits Hollywood Hot Rods and 2012 Street Rodder Road Tour Car

    You may remember that we announced about a month ago that we would be the Official Tool Sponsor of the 2012 Street Rodder Road Tour Car. This meant that the crew at Hollywood Hot Rods would be using our line of tools, from brake line tools to metal fabrication tools, they used it all! We recently had the opportunity to stop in and visit with Troy Ladd and his crew. We got the full tour and checked out the progress on the 40 Ford they were putting together for the 2012 Road Tour.

    Hollywood Hot Rods has been based in the Burbank area for a while now. Their location is in a part of town where you might not expect to see a hot rod or fabrication shop situated, but that's the beauty of Southern California. They make the most of their space and really pack it full of project cars! Just like their builds, everything had its well thought out place with each car being nestled into its own little piece of hot rod heaven. Everywhere you turned seemed to have a corner filled with more killer projects and tools, it was definitely overload of the senses for a custom car enthusiast!

    Finally we were able to check out the current status of the 40 Ford being built for the 2012 Street Rodder Road Tour. We had seen some spy photos of the chop being done to the roof of the car, but it was something else to see the finished product in person. With the help of some key Eastwood metal working tools like our Pro Hammer and Dolly Kit, Shrinker Stretchers, Bullseye Picks, Adjustable Profile Gauges, and many more they had the Drake body looking like it came from them with the chop. They really have chops down to a science and it showed with how flawless the metal work was!

    All in all it was a great trip and Troy and his crew were very gracious hosts, heck even the shop dog gave us a warm welcome and goodbye! We can't wait to see how the 40 Ford progresses and what other tricks Hollywood Hotrods and Street Rodder Magazine have in store for the car. Make sure you keep watching the blog for more updates on the 2nd annual Eastwood Summer Classic where you can see this very car in person!

    Check out the slideshow below for some of the highlights from our visit with Hollywood Hotrods!

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