Updated: Sep 10
While attending local car shows you will be bombarded with beautiful show cars, expertly detailed, and parked on mirrors so that one can admire not only the visible hard work put into the car on the top as well as the details under the vehicle as well.
While no one can argue these are not amazing representations of the owner's dedication and investment to their craft, my eyes are always drawn to the Rat Rods.
Wherever they go the rats draw major attention whether it be positive or negative, people always have a strong opinion about the rust buckets.
The one thing that stands out the most to me is the individual that owns the car; they are strong and independent.
They choose a lifestyle that resonates with me; is not easy, the ride is rough, and all the comfort elements are often removed from the rides. I have seen seats made of metal with no cushion or even wood bench seats modified to fit in the cabin.
Back in 2020 I went to a car show and came across the rat in this blog and just fell in love. On the surface it looks like a rusted pile of junk but then as you move closer you quickly admire all the attention and detail that went into this build.
I appreciated the car even more after I spoke with the owner and learned about all the wrenching that went into this build.
I recently had the opportunity to sit down with the owner and find out more about this Rat Rod.
In true outlaw fashion the owner asked not to be identified so we respected this rebels request.
The ride starts with a coupe 1930 model that had been chopped two inches the owner found the body, he decided to take another three inches off for a total of five inches.
The cabin sits on a custom Z frame that allows for the center of the car to sit lower than the front and back.
The Engine and Transmission
The power comes from a beautiful gas guzzling Chevy 355 motor with dual tunnel RAM with velocity stacks attached to a three-speed automatic Chevy 350 turbo transmission.
The engine has been bored over .30 essentially making this 350 a 355.
Coming off the block are Lakester headers with baffles to keep the noise out of ticket range yet still maintain that beasty growl.
In order to keep this beast feed the small factory gas eight-gallon tank that was located in the front was swapped for the battery and an eighteen-gallon tank was installed in the rear. Now this was no easy feat as the rear suspension had to be customized for the tank to fit.
The larger tank allows about fourteen miles to the gallon with approximately 50-60 miles between fill ups when driving the speed limit but who drives normally in a car like this???
So still expect a lot of stops at the gas station after opening those two, four-barrel carburetors!
Suspension, Brakes, and Tires
The rat has a suicide front end that is considered a straight axle, but it's a drop axle with an inverted spring offering some suspension. Shocks were custom mounted behind the axel to provide a little softer ride.
The front tires sit on a 15-inch rim and are a radial biased tire made to look an old school tire.
The rear shocks are crossovers with a coil and shock combination that can be manually adjusted for racing or comfort.
The back tires are these crazy 33-inch mud tires that you typically find on an off road vehicle like a Jeep Wrangler.
Disc brakes have been installed at all four corners of the rat for stopping power.
It’s All In The Details
The owner incorporated his personality and soul into this build.
Starting in the front is this super bad ass rat holding a wrench welded to the radiator guard and below that is a custom painted grill.
Other than padded seats all the creature comforts have been removed.
The inside is loaded with stickers highlighting the driver’s personality, an ammo can as an arm rest, and a killer devil head on top of the gear shifter.
The roof has been cut and reinforced with wood inserts. When the sun is to warm or the ride is hit with inclement weather a green canvas can be snapped into place
There are additional references to the owner’s military service and his time in the Marines.
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