Given the formula "less is more," Gary and Donna Moline's '59 Ford F-100 is, more or less, one heck of a classic custom pickup. First impressions tell you that this Ike-era 1/2-ton has been customized. Blazing-orange solids with '60 Ford hubcaps wrapped with Coker Classic wide-whites is the first giveaway. That and the custom-mix Mint Green paint that's tastefully accented with Corinthian White on the cab's top. The truck's front and rear sections have a few modifications, too, but only the trained eye will spot them. First impression: This is a mild street custom.
But, look again, check out the hood. Even though the Ford script suggests that a stock hood was used to cover the V-8 engine (more about that bad boy later),'59 Ford aficionados by now are itching to tell the rest of us yahoos that the horizontal grille above the Ford script has been filled. Moreover, that four-letter word, F-O-R-D that is, originally was implanted on the grille itself. By removing them and placing them on the filled hood, and by re-plating the cross tubes, the front assumes a whole new character. Finally, the bumpers--front and rear--are '56 Ford F-100 pieces.
The rear section? That's easy, those vile-looking vertical taillights were exorcised from the sheetmetal, and in their place are a pair of round lenses from a '50 Pontiac. If you're crying "sacrilege" that a couple of (gasp!) GM components found their way onto this FoMoCo product, rest assured that practically everything else--other than the front disc brake conversion and the engine's Chevy H-beam connecting rods--used to make this classic 1/2-ton hauler unique originated in Dearborn or from Ford-related vendors elsewhere.
But before we tour the FoMoCo add-ons, let's take a closer look at the truck's body. Again, Fordophiles will say that there's something visually wrong here. And they are right because the rear fenderwells actually started life at the front of a donor '59 Ford truck that has gone to its just reward in hot rod heaven; Gary grafted the sacrificial front fenderwells to the rear of his F-100. The wing windows were also surgically removed to make way for the one-piece door windows now in place.
When Gary began the project a couple of years ago, the first thing he did was yank off the body to expose the sturdy framerails that make this F-100--like all others in Ford history--Ford tough. The chassis was then given a Mustang II front suspension kit that has GM (there are those two ugly letters again) disc brake conversion. To lower the truck ("I make 'em as low as they'll go," says Gary about all of his hot rods), the rear axle housing was relocated to the top of the leaves. Also, a pair of Ford Explorer rear disc brakes means there are rotor-and-caliper assemblies on all four corners to stop this classic truck.
There's another reason Gary and Donna insisted on disc brakes for all the wheels. For power, you'll find a Ford 460 engine that's been stroked and bored to 502 cubic inches by Ken Myers of P&M Automotive in Baldwin Park, California. As a former drag racer, Ken knows that while bigger is better, to make an engine the best you need to build it using only quality component's. To that end, he mounted an Edelbrock Performer in the cylinder valley, topping that classic intake manifold with a Holley 750-cfm four-barrel carburetor. Ken is always selective when it comes to camshaft grinds, so in the interest of building a torque-monster street engine, he inserted a custom-grind camshaft, topping it with 429 Cobra Jet valves and Crane springs. The exhaust manifold is from Sanderson, and the 2 1/2-inch stainless steel pipes emit a hearty, bellowing noise that earmarks this custom as a truck. "I have no problem towing with this truck," says Gary. An understatement if ever there was one.
Finally, just so that Gary's passengers don't forget that this is a truck, not a hoity-toity car, he left the interior as Spartan as can be. Beyond the gray leather seat cover and headliner that Howard Mongold stitched, there isn't much to make the cab's occupants feel as though they need to give this former work vehicle the white-glove treatment. Oh, sure, the smoothed-and-filled dash is tastefully dressed with VDO instruments and the Alpine stereo provides plenty of cool tunes for the road, but for the most part, the crew's quarters boasts minimal appointments. By maintaining the minimalist approach to styling, Gary and Donna Moline have proven that less certainly can be more.
|Facts & Figures|
|Gary and Donna Moline|
1959 Ford F-100
|Rearend / Ratio||Ford 9" / 3.00:1|
|Rear suspension||leaves, traction bars|
|Rear brakes||Ford Explorer discs|
|Front suspension||Mustang II|
|Front brakes||GM discs|
|Master cylinder||Walton Fabrication|
|Chassis plumbing||by owner|
|Front wheel make, size|| solids, 15x6 |
|Rear wheel make, size|| solids, 5x8.5|
|Front tire make, size || Coker Classic, 205/75R15|
|Rear tire make, size || Coker Classic, 235/75R15|
|Machining / Assembly||P&M Automotive|
|Camshaft||custom grind, 279/284 duration overlap|
|Valve covers||Ford Motorsports|
|Manifold / Induction||Edelbrock Performer / Holley 750|
|Exhaust / Mufflers||Sanderson headers / stainless steel|
|Body mods||widened rear fenderwells|
|Paint type / Color||DuPont / custom-mix Mint Green and Corinthian White|
|Headlights/Taillights||Ford / '50 Pontiac|
|Bumpers||'56 Ford F-100|
|Other body items||single-piece door windows|
|Dashboard||smoothed and filled|
|Insert / Gauges||custom / VDO|
|Stereo / Speakers||Alpine|
|Air conditioning||Hot Rod Air|
|Wiring||Mike "Sparky" Sparks|
|Steering wheel||custom three-spoke|
|Material / Color||leather / gray|