The body mods are very subtle and every piece of sheetmetal on the truck is original as are the grille, taillights, and bumpers. The bumpers were relocated closer to the body with bolts welded to the back for a smooth appearance and the edges of the rear bumper trimmed to match the truck’s body lines. A total of 54 louvers ventilate the tilt-forward hood. The gas door was relocated from in front of the rear quarter panel to above the driver side taillight, using a subtle tap-to-open door. Unique eyebrows add a distinctive ’50s look to the headlights. Prior to paint, the entire body was dipped and stripped to raw metal, then Marvin from His Place, Inc., in Emmitsburg, Maryland, sprayed the PPG Metallic Silver, accenting it with Wimbledon White inside and out.

Inside, eight hides of white Italian leather were used to cover the distinctive 1964 Thunderbird seats, complete with bucket seats up front and the unique wraparound seats in the rear. Everything was trimmed to remain below the window height. The dash is all new with eyebrows over the Auto Meter gauges to match the unique eyebrows over the truck’s headlights. A drop-down control panel for the air suspension keeps the dash smooth and motor music eliminates the need for stereo.

The rear seats create the front of a special compartment for all of the truck’s wiring, relays, and breakers, as well as the starter relay, electric fan controls, and the electric vacuum pump for the power brakes. The box also holds the compressor and reserve tank for the RideTech air suspension as well as the F-100’s Optima battery. The back door of the box contains 60 louvers, similar to the hood, both done by Dave Buete. Other talented craftsmen include the Martz Chassis team who accomplished much of the metalwork inside and Robert Jewel from Main Street Upholstery in Thurmont, Maryland, who did the stitch work, including the seats, headliner, and carpet.

What’s the best part of the story on this radical Ford panel? Mark admits that when we caught up with him at this year’s F-100 Supernationals, it was the first time the truck has ever been on the road legally. He took the title in a week before we photographed his distinctive Panel and put its first set of legal plates on it in 41 years! How’s that for a story? For all their talent and assistance, special thanks goes to Gary and Andy Martz, John Ward, Bill Kuhn, Robert Jewel, Phil Benedict, and Mike Flowers.

Mark & Vickie Cresap

Jefferson, Maryland
1955 Ford F-100 Panel

Chassis
Frame: custom-fabricated stainless steel
Rearend / Ratio: Winters 9-inch / 4.30:1
Rear suspension: four-link, air ride
Rear brakes: SSBC 12-inch disc, four-piston calipers
Front suspension: polished MII-style IFS
Front brakes: SSBC 12-inch disc
Steering box: ’70 Thunderbird rack-and-pinion
Front wheels: 17x8 American Racing Torq Thrust II
Rear wheels: 17x9.5 American Racing Torq Thrust II
Front tires: Falken 255/50-ZR17
Rear tires: Falken 285/60-ZR17
Gas tank: 30-gal aluminum

Drivetrain
Engine: 547ci Ford Racing
Heads: aluminum
Valve covers: powdercoated steel
Manifold / Induction: Weiand dual-quad / two Quick Fuel 750-cfm
Ignition: MSD
Headers: custom-built Jet Hot coated
Exhaust / Mufflers: custom 2½-inch / 22-inch stainless with cut-outs
Transmission: Richmond six-speed
Shifter: Hurst

Body
Style: F-100 panel
Modifications: tilt hood, shaved, fuel filler relocated, smooth running boards
Fenders front / rear: stock
Hood: louvered stock
Grille: stock, painted
Bodywork and paint by: His Place Inc., Emmitsburg, Maryland
Paint type / Color: PPG / silver, Wimbledon White
Headlights / Taillights: halogen / LED
Outside mirrors: stock
Bumpers: modified stock

Interior
Dashboard: modified stock
Gauges: Auto Meter
Air conditioning: Vintage Air
Stereo: none
Steering wheel: Lecarra
Steering column: ididit
Seats: ’64 Thunderbird
Upholstery by: Robert Jewel, Main Street Upholstery, Thurmont, Maryland
Material / Color: leather / white
Carpet: black