1940 Ford Taking Shape


Jim’s 1940 Ford Standard

Today, I stopped by Jim’s shop – as I always do on Saturdays – and found the 1940 Ford taking shape, essentially fully mocked up.  My cousin Jim has put a lot of effort into his latest creation.  So I took a bunch of photos so this blog post would show off the current progress.

So the following pictures show the front of the car.  I’ve talked about the aluminum hood before because, well…  It is just awesome.  The heat extractor comes right out of the pages of the sales brochure for the 2014 Camaro SS (like mine).  This aluminum hood is light as a feather too.  But…  The hood is not the only remarkable detail.  Take a look at the grill, the “Ford” emblem latch release and the frenched headlights…

Pretty nifty, huh?  Well, there is more…  Next, let me show you how the doors are shaping out.  There has been a huge amount of work done here:


Check out the door/body tolerance…

In an earlier article, I wrote about how Jim had chopped the top on the 1940 Ford.  It required not only cutting the posts, but also adding material to stretch the top to compensate for the change in the roof’s geometry.  This change also forced alteration of the rear windows.  The next challenge required altering the shape of the doors.  As you might have imagined, Jim had to cut and add material to the doors so they would fit properly.  And if you haven’t noticed, check out the precision in the door/body gap.  It is very tight.

Artistic Features

Jim builds cars to suit him and by definition this means some features might make sense just to his tastes.  “Must be nice”, huh?  I call these “artistic features” and the 1940 Ford already has several…

Trunk Hinges

Here is the completed trunk hinges shaped to match a person’s hands.  The aluminum hinges are made from a milling machine, files and an air powered engraving tool – that is all!  Before you say “Nah!”, ask yourself how you would craft this from a thick chunk of aluminum?

Door Handles

Jim’s skill are once again showcased in the door handles for the 1940 Ford.  Take a look:

img_3997This door handle is made, not bought.  I asked Jim about it, and he said in his mind it represents a vase with two rose buds in it.  The rose buds have petals and yes, this is all hand-made from aluminum.  The button operates a latch mechanism of Jim’s own design (more pictures later).

Here are a couple of pictures showing the door handle from a few a couple of feet away:

Running Board / Exhaust

Because Jim wanted to keep things simple under the frame, he made the running boards serve two purposes:  a) finish the look below the body and b) exhaust.  Yes, these running boards serve as exhaust pipes.  You can see this in the two pictures in the previous gallery and in the next photo:


Back of the Car

From the back of the car we can see the recessed tail lights.  You can also see the scars on the roof of the car from the welding of more panels used to solve the missing material from chopping the top.

The Engine

The 1940 Ford has been designed to use a Chevrolet LSx engine…

img_4015And as a bonus, you can see what the hood latch mechanism looks like.  Yes, this is yet another bit of Jim’s handy work.  The latch has been made from scratch and features a hinge for the hood, opening forward.  The “Ford” emblem (seen below the “V”) is attached to a rod that actuates the latch release.


Here is the inside of the doors.  This looks very simple but it shows the door latch release mechanism and the power window actuators.

A great deal of time and engineering went into this effort.  You see the rods that actuate the door latch from the inside have to clear the window runners.

2 thoughts on “1940 Ford Taking Shape

  1. tysonhugie

    The level of craftsmanship here is pretty incredible! Those door handles have so much detail in them. This car is really going to be a showpiece when all is said and done. What are his plans for the paint color when it gets to that point?

    1. bowtie6 Post author

      Thank you for the comment, Tyson. The door handles are indeed a bit over the top but there is a reason for them…

      You see, in answer to your question about the paint color: Jim is thinking about a very, very light “rose” color scheme; and hence the name of his ride will be Rosebud. I’m not 100% exactly sure how this will turn out, but that is his plan. I’m very curious how this is going to turn out and even thought paint is a long way away, I’ll document it here.


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