We have no doubt that street truck enthusiast Jim Brubaker's orange pearl, ghost-flamed '56 Ford F-100 big-window pickup is destined to win its fair share of Oscars on the car show circ, er, make that, truck show circuit. It's got "star quality" written all over it!
You see, Brubaker is used to dealing with class acts. As President of Physical Production for Universal Pictures, "Big Jim" demands nothing less than perfection from all those around him, so it should come as no surprise that the movie mogul expects the same when it comes to his hobby.
Transportation industry veteran Dennis De Waay gets the credit for spearheading the actual build on the F-100, which due to the constant state of flux, has oftentimes been described as a "work in progress." For example, the chassis beneath Brubaker's big-window features a fully chromed and polished, Tri-C Engineering-prepared Kugel Komponents IRS outfitted with Air Ride Technologies ShockWaves, and a pair of highly detailed Wilwood Engineering disc brakes all proudly displayed beneath a 1-inch thick laminated safety glass pickup bed floor. If it's hard reading that, imagine being responsible for putting it together! Up front, the Effie features another Tri-C/Kugel Kollaboration: a polished and chrome-plated IFS, again sporting Air Ride's ShockWaves, a set of Wilwood disc brakes, and a polished Kugel-prepared Mustang II rack-and-pinion steering unit. Wheels and tires on the '56 come in the form of 18- and 20-inch Rallys from Intro, wrapped with Toyo low-pro radial rubber.
When it came to selecting the right powertrain, Jim wisely elected to "put a Ford in a Ford." Underneath that forward tilting F-100 hood, you find a highly detailed and polished Joseph Granatelli-machined and assembled, 2002-vintage Ford 351W EFI engine. Internally, the 5.8L Ford medium-block features a set of 9.5:1 compression JE pistons along with a set of ARP-equipped 351W connecting rods, and a cast-iron 351W crank riding on Clevite engine bearings. Also along for the ride is a COMP Cams roller cam and kit along with a Melling high-volume oil pump. Topping off Jim's 351W short-block is a pair of Ford Racing Turbo Swirl big valve aluminum cylinder heads featuring 2.02-inch stainless steel intake, and 1.68-inch stainless steel exhaust valves with ARP rocker studs, COMP Cams 1.7-ratio roller rocker arms, and COMP Cams pushrods, valve springs, and retainers. A set of Billet Specialties valve covers not only looks good; they also protect the valvetrain hardware. Bolted in between the 351W's lifter valley, you'll find a chrome-plated Ford Racing/GT-40 intake sporting a K&N filtered Granatelli Performance 70mm electronic throttle body and a set of 42 lb/hr Ford Racing electronic fuel injectors. Ignition duties are handled by an MSD Pro-Billet 351W ignition system firing a set of Autolite spark plugs through MSD spark plug wires. Exhaust duties are handled by a set of thermal-coated Rewarder headers spinning the spent exhaust gases back through a pair of Flowmaster three-chamber mufflers. Backing up Jim's potent 351W is a BS Industries-prepared Ford E4OD.
Credit for the outstanding House of Kolor Ultra Orange Pearl basecoat with Ultra Orange Pearl and Egyptian Gold pearl flames goes to Jimmy Hartman from Oxnard, California's, Hog Wild Creations. Prior to paint, Hartman and co-workers Anthony Conchola, Eric Zatz, and Mike Maraga shaved the F-100's driprails, and removed its door handles. In the process, they also extended the Effie's rear fenders 3 1/2 inches as well as extending the running boards. Other modifications include the installation of an LED third brake light below the back window, along with adding a rolled rear pan (featuring slotted LED brake lights, and a clear glass floor), building a custom tailgate, and installing the aforementioned forward-tilting hood kit.
Jesse Calderon from Saticoy, California's, Jesse's Interiors covered the F-100's Glide Engineering seats, its sculpted door panels, custom console, and headliner in soft cream leather and suede accentuated, with Mercedes-Benz tan wool carpeting. Other creature comforts include a Vintage Air climate control, a Gennie shifter, a leather-wrapped Colorado Custom steering wheel, and a Sound Master's-installed Kenwood audio system.
Now you know why we at CLASSIC TRUCKS magazine say that Jim Brubaker's '56 Ford F-100 big-window is "IN A CLASS OF ITS OWN!"