Streetside Classics-Dallas/Fort Worth
5400 Sandshell Dr
Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth, TX
The Ford T-bucket is one of the most enduring and endearing styles in all of hot rodding. The idea has always been that the T-bucket was built from scavenged parts, with a focus on unbridled horsepower, low curb weight, very little comfort and even less aesthetics. But many of them, such as this bright orange roadster, are just too cleanly finished and detailed to be considered junkyard dogs anymore.
Finished a few years back and based on a quality fiberglass body, the shape is archetypal T-bucket, with the tall, vertical windshield and stubby pickup truck-like bed out back. Nobody's really sure how this exact iteration came to be the standard, since Ford pickups never looked like this, but today it's the accepted style of the T-bucket and it just looks right. Every inch of this one was properly prepped, eliminating any waves or distortions in the bodywork, and because someone was sweating the details in the beginning, the fiberglass will be in great shape for years to come. The paint is vivid orange, which is a nice change from either the primer black that has recently come back into fashion, or the excessively metallic or pearl hues that characterized T-buckets of the '60s and '70s. In fact, just about everything on the car was bathed in that orange paint, including the frame and most of the suspension. There are a few chrome and polished bits that add some welcomed contrast, including a Model T style radiator shell, the straight-pipe exhaust, the dual skulls flanking the license plate frame (check out those cool eyes!), and King Bee-style headlights that all work together to give this streetrod a traditionally cool look.
In their back-to-basics style, many T-buckets had bare interiors with nothing more than a blanket for upholstery and if you were lucky, maybe an oil pressure gauge. Not so here, where there's cushy black vinyl upholstery and a full array of Equus white-face gauges keeping an eye on the small block up front. Stitched up in traditional pleated fashion, the wrap-around bench seat and interior panels are nicely done, and this one even features a neatly-tailored carpet set. The 'doors', of course, are simply for show, because no true T-bucket driver does anything other than hop over the sides and hit the road. The steering wheel is a fat wooden-rimmed unit mounted in traditional, nearly horizontal, T-bucket fashion matched by a slender, custom 'skull' shifter. They even put the pickup bed to work holding the fuel cell and remote-mounted battery. Nice!
The engine is a 350 cubic inch Chevy that's been mildly built for a little extra pop and features long-tube headers for that high-performance sound, along with an Edelbrock RPM intake and Edelbrock 600CFM 4-barrel carburetor that helps the block breath easy. Dress up gear includes a custom air cleaner and matching valve covers adorned with flame patterns, and those aforementioned headers are exactly what every T-bucket wears: long-tubes blowing through massive side pipes. This one is happy to run all day on pump gas and stays cool thanks to a custom radiator and electric water pump. The chassis is nicely finished, with most of the details out in the open for easy examination, painted to match the body or polished up for a little added pop. The front clip is a zero-drop straight axle with a Heim 4-rod set-up and a 'spring-behind' leaf spring stack (along with front disc brakes), while out back there's an early GM 8.2-inch front loader with a Heim 4-rod and Panhard bar set-up on coilovers. In between, you'll find a quick-shifting TH350 3-speed automatic transmission with an installed stall convertor that helps manage the shift points. The only rolling stock you can put on a T-bucket are skinnies up front and massive meats out back-in this case, they're gigantic 31x16-15 Hoosiers on shiny Centerline 'Convo-Pro' aluminum wheels.
Remarkably, it seems that T-buckets are as popular today as they ever were, and their combination of outrageous looks and potent performance makes them a real party to drive, with this one being nicer and more affordable than most. Call today!
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