We all know there's plenty of horse trading, as it were, in the old truck world, whether it be for parts, labor, another project, or who knows what else. Well, ever since Jim Musick was a kid, all he wanted was a '64 427 shelby Cobra and a '54 F-100-a tall order and a somewhat unlikely pair, but what the heck-and as real good luck would have it, he snagged a Cobra.
You would think it would be the other way around, but Jim was having a hard time finding an F-100 until 15 years ago, when he drove his restored '63 Econoline pickup to a show where he and the owner of a "daily driver at best," '54 Ford crossed paths. A deal was struck, the two exchanged pink slips, and Jim logged a few years of seat time in the F-100 before deciding to do something about it. This transpired in the days when Pro street was king and the truck took on a large set of skins in the back with almost bicycle-looking tires up front, which wasn't a bad thing given the time, but life began to take a precedence and the truck would never be finished in time to still be "in style" given Jim's original vision. Late in '06, Jim was ready to get back to work on the F-100, but this time he knew he needed a little help to get the project done to his standards. Through the grapevine, Jim heard about a local Columbus, Ohio, shop called Garret's rod shop that had been turning out some top-notch cars lately, so he decided to pay them a visit.
Sooner than later, the '54 was at Garret's and they were going to town. Jim had already done much of the chassis work on the truck, including the No Limit Mustang II and 4-link as well as handling much of the general mechanical chores, so Garret's got started on the tired and rusted old tin. After the needed patch panels were in place, they radiused the A-pillars, shaved the whole truck, removed the driprails, installed one-piece windows, roll pans, fog lights, custom LED taillights, and custom running boards, just to name a few mods.
A stunning 18 weeks later, the team at Garret's was finished with the bodywork and preassembly and got busy spraying the satin PPG Performance red paint in an effort to keep the F-100 ahead of the trends this time around. The bold paint job called for some equally daring rolling stock, which came in the form of Billet specialties' 20- and 22-inch wheels.
To complement the paint, Garret's recommended Jim take the Ford over to Lyon's Custom Trim in Brookville, Ohio, for one of their high-quality upholstery jobs. Their subsequent work covering the six-way power '92 Oldsmobile buckets and just about everything else inside the truck with red leather netted a red-onred scheme with silver accents that'll bring a tear and sunglasses to your eyes. Flaming river components make up the steering system and include one of their power rack-and-pinions, tilt column, and steering wheels.
We caught up with Jim and his truck at the '07 Columbus Goodguys show, where it was the truck's first time out, and Jim was smiles for miles. Jim thanks Garret's rod shop-they helped make his lifelong dream come true. Congrats to all!