View Full Version : Stretch body build

old round fart
01-30-2013, 02:22 PM
Just picked up my new stretched body and to say I'm impressed would be a gross understatement! I went to Mt. Home last summer to talk to B.C. & Josh and was impressed with everything I saw.
I built a '23 in 1972 and drove it from Atlanta Ga. to Memphis Tn. for the NSRA Street Rod Nationals. I have had street rods and race cars, but nothing beats a bucket.
I have retired to Norman Ok. and am planning a very different T. I have been planning this project for several years and if you guys would like to see a build and don't mind long stretches between updates, I would like to document some of my challenges.

Some of my goals are:

1. Comfort for long drives.
2. Lower stance (easier to get in)
3. Longer door (easier to get my three hundred and plenty lb. body in.
4. Sit as low as possible in the car.
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01-30-2013, 03:21 PM
Awesome!! Looking foreward to following your build. Be sure to post pictures along the way!!!

01-30-2013, 09:54 PM
Looks like you copying the wrong stuff. After you click on the "i" beside your picture, a new small screen will show up. You need to copy the writing that is inside the large box that starts and ends with (img). Then paste that to your reply. They had to walk me through this also, so don't feel bad.
Your kinda in my neck of the woods. I you want, send me pm, and I will send you my cell #, so you can give me a call for some help with this. We wanna see your project.

old round fart
01-31-2013, 10:24 PM
This was my first car built in 1972. This gives you some idea of just how twisted my mind really is!


Thanks to Lee for getting me sorted out!

01-31-2013, 10:27 PM
WOW that is one cool looking T you had!!!

01-31-2013, 10:50 PM
Man, John you must of had a passport just to walk from one end to the other. Great hot rod!
Now, lets see picture of your new project. Hope you stop by Tulsa weekend of the 15th for the Starbird Show. I will be at the Tulsa Roadsters display. Here is a link to our web site.

old round fart
01-31-2013, 11:24 PM
Lee, thanks for your help tonight. Your club looks alive and well, and I will try to make Starbirds. John Hancock

The first thing I did was build a cart to put the body on. Total investment was about $20.00 so that will help make the build more enjoyable.



02-01-2013, 08:01 AM
Like the cart John. I built one also and it's made working on the body so much better. I see you fly R/C planes! I also fly! I mainly fly giant scale.

old round fart
02-01-2013, 01:54 PM
Thanks Mike. Yes, I'm afraid I'm afflicted with more than one hobby. The Yak is my only big plane, I fly Senior Pattern too, but since I moved to Ok. I don't do that much because I have to go so far for contests. Planes fit the budget better, but my real love is cars!

02-01-2013, 01:56 PM
Kinda like the cart I made. Mines a bit more beefy, but my car probably weighs almost triple. I do the airplanes also. but mine are control line. Thing of the past, huh.

old round fart
02-01-2013, 10:14 PM
I tried control line but never made it all the way around! At least with radio control you can get an experienced pilot to get it 2 mistakes high and have a shot at him saving it til you get used to flying, then it's not so bad.
The weather is going to be nice this weekend so I hope to at least get the floor cut out. I have a pattern cut for one side and picked up the wood today. I hope it gets warm enough to glass it in, but I doubt it will. I don't have heat in the shop.

old round fart
02-02-2013, 09:02 PM
Had a good day in the shop today. Had an idea about how to more easily generate the pattern for my floor. I drilled holes every 2: and put in "t" nuts and 1/4" threaded rod I could adjust to touch the body from the kart. Then transferred the measurement to 1/4" ply to make my pattern. About 10 min. with a grinder had a good fit. Made one for each side, connected them with scrap straps and made a 1/4" whole floor pattern. Fine adjustments and then the 3/4" floor was cut.




old round fart
02-02-2013, 09:08 PM
Made a picture to see how low I can get in the car. This one I'm sitting on a 4x4 on the floor level.


This one is 1 1/2" above the floor, which is more of my goal.


I think I would really be more comfortable with a center steer car, but I better not go there!!

02-03-2013, 12:02 AM
Good idea for the pattern maker. Sure beats the way I cut up huge pieces of cardboard to cut and trim, cut and trim, and...etc..etc. Gotta remember that trick. Looks like you sit plenty deep in the body. Most drivers and passengers sit much higher. Should be pretty easy to make a seat to set the way you want.

old round fart
02-06-2013, 09:07 AM
Haven't updated in a few days, but I am working. Got some mini bear claw latches and am working on getting them to fit together and work right. Have thrown away 3 test pieces and got frustrated and went in the house to get a fresh start today, More later! John

02-06-2013, 03:38 PM
John, Did you figure out about how to go about cutting in the doors? Am curious how you are or went about doing it.

old round fart
02-06-2013, 09:56 PM
Lee, I haven't heard anything, so I'll continue to get the braces in before I cut the doors. I did get the practice rear jams done, but didn't have the time to take pix. I'll do that tomorrow.
Cal. Custom Roadsters has hidden hinges for the passenger door, so I ordered one. If I can figure out how to reverse it to use on the drivers door, I'll get another one. Hidden is my first choice. John

02-07-2013, 08:14 AM
My delivery has hidden hinges. If you like, I can take a pic or 2 and post them so you can see how Spirit does it. Its a pretty simple way that they do it. Well, at least it looks simple. I bet B.C. can fix you up with a set.

old round fart
02-07-2013, 08:50 AM
I would like to see them. Might be easier to use and not have to engineer CCR's for the drivers side. Thanks.

02-07-2013, 10:35 AM
John, never saw a Spirit stretch body without an insert and floor.
Sure gives you lots of options on how to set your body up and interior. I have the same body and really like the driver's opening door. Keep in mind though you will probably need a tilt column to get up and around it to get out the door though. If I had it all to do again, I would start off like you did with this body shell and make my build starting with the "room needed for the left foot", then set the column based on that. Also, an idea I had if I were to build my own floor would be to drop the floor to level of the bottom of the frame in the area between your heels. A buddy of mine just built a Cobra replica car and did that and the car is so much more comfortable to drive, even more so with a clutch.
Keep us up to date with your build. There are a couple really good builds going on here, hope to see your progress too.

02-07-2013, 11:47 AM
Here are some poor shots of the hinges. Really not anyway to take good pictures of them installed.
1st shot is door closed..top angle
2nd shot is door closed..side view
3rd shot is door open..rear view
4th shot is door open..side view
Hope it helps a bit.

old round fart
02-07-2013, 01:02 PM
Welcome to me build Steve. Foot room is a premium in these little cars, but the distance between the frame and the trans is so close, I'm not sure it is worth the effort to sink the floor there. I'm hoping I can get the steering column to go through the firewall high enough to allow me to have a little more foot room. I will be stretching the door 12" more than the stock door to make getting in easier. I'm WAY TO FAT TO FAT to fit in a stock T so I'm starting with the body and if I can get that to work, I'll build the frame.
Lee, those hinges may work. I have the CCR hinges on the way, so I'll check them first, then call Bob. Thanks for the pix.

old round fart
02-11-2013, 10:07 PM
Don't have any pix, but I am making headway. Got some hidden hinges today and was very disappointed! All that came was the part that bolts to the door and that is what they call a hinge. No return on door parts on the invoice, just the$107.00 price tag!
I will work on the hinges I have to see if I can make them hidden, and if I can't they will just have to show.
Had to modify my pattern making tool. Had to make the woos thicker and epoxy the T-nuts in. Works better now.
Talked to Josh at Spirit today and he doesn't think I will have a problem cutting the door out before I get the jams in so I may cut them out after the floor and top wood is in there. Started gluing the top wood in today. Will get the floor tomorrow if the weather stays warm enough.

02-12-2013, 09:34 PM
To bad about the hinges. Sounds more like a half hinge deal to me. I thought a hinge had to wiggle in the middle. Oh, just a thought, maybe thats why they called them hidden..........sorry John, my mind jus ain't right sometimes.
I picked up my tank today. Had it custom built to my specs. Of course my specs aren't the same as the tank ended up being. It will work ok with a couple of minor re-works. I quess I should of had them redo part of it, but I have been waiting on it for 3 weeks, and was at a stopping point without it.
Keep us posted on your progress, and take pictures as you proceed. We all like pictures.
ps. Starbirds is this weekend. Have the roadster ready to go. Stop in if you get this way..

old round fart
03-03-2013, 08:39 PM
Well, I was finally able to get back to the shop today and make a little progress. I have had MANY failures and re-do's that didn't work, but I feel pretty good about today's labor.
I went to the body shop supply store and got this adhesive and I quess it will work, but was not exactly what I wanted. I was looking for the consistency of bondo, but this was more like honey.


With the floor fitting as close as it did, I just put it in the crack and it filled all the space and didn't drain out so I think it will work. I will try to find something a little thicker for the rest of the wood.



03-03-2013, 09:35 PM
I would still fiberglass the floor in, just wet some mat and lay it up the side of the body and onto the wood. I would then brush the wood with resin to seal it.

old round fart
03-03-2013, 10:07 PM
Yes, the adhesive is just to seal the floor to the body. I'll glass 2" either side of the seam and add 2 layers to the whole floor.

old round fart
05-04-2013, 09:56 PM
WOW! When I started this I knew it may be a while between updates, but I didn't expect 2 MONTHS! I'll try to do better. I have got to redo the hinges again, but I wanted to show what I have now. The Bear Claw latches are in the door jams and glued. The cross bars for the hinge bars are there to be screwed and glued. After I get the hinges installed and welded, I will finish cutting the door out and glassing everything in.

This is the hinge. It needs a little more radius and I decided to weld the part for the door to mre accurately position it in place.

This is the latch. It is latched then both pieced glued to the body.


This is the frame for the door. As you can see, I will have plenty of room to clear the steering wheel when I get in!

This has been a fun and very frustrating project for me. My skill level is way below where I want it to be, but it's been 30 years since I did this and I think it is good to make me get out of the recliner! The skills will improve I hope! I'll try not to wait so long to post more. Like they say on TV "Thanks for watching!"

05-04-2013, 11:29 PM
Nice wide door there John. Keep moving forward and keep us in pictures. Getting ideas on my next build.

05-05-2013, 08:30 AM
Looks to me like you are doing a pretty good job there John. Wish my roadster had a door.

05-05-2013, 11:53 AM
nice work keep the picture coming.

Carolina Man
06-17-2014, 04:49 PM
John any new updates?

06-18-2014, 05:39 PM
Cliff, I think John may have put the bucket aside for a while. He may even want to sell it. I know he has a shoebox now that he is building. You might give him a call if you looking for a bucket.

Carolina Man
06-18-2014, 06:10 PM
I talked to him a few days ago I think he plans on getting back to it.

old round fart
06-23-2014, 02:52 PM
Cliff is right! It didn't take me long to burn out on the shoebox! Still can't get away from the buckets! I went to a nostalgic drag event last weekend and that got me dreaming again and thinking about stretching the wheelbase again. I think I have figured out a way to make a tube frame out front and run the radiator in the bed like the guy on the bucketeer site. Anybody want a '50 Ford coupe? LOL

old round fart
06-30-2014, 10:57 PM

This looks kinda lpke a T bucket. What do you guys think?