The 2010 AMSOIL / Street Rodder Road Tour Shadow Rods XL27 roadster pickup
Approaching 375,000 miles would be an impressive milestone for any car but what about 15 cars? To say you built 15 cars and their cumulative miles are in excess of 300,000 says a great deal for the cars, along with the products and builders. The STREET RODDER Road Tour project began 15 cars began with the intent to prove that you can build a street rod using industry products and then drive it anywhere at anytime.
In the Road Tour history, 15 vastly different cars were driven approximately 25,000 miles per year, built by nearly a dozen different builders, and assembled with numerous industry products yielding the same results: a street rod you can drive. The assortment of pre- and post-’48 coupes, sedans, roadsters, phaetons, pickups, etc., have attended many NSRA, Syracuse Nationals, and Cruisin’ Ocean City events visited dozens of street rod shops and industry manufacturers, while touring various museums, collections, historical sites, landmarks, and much more. But more importantly the cars have and continue to be exposed to the very rodders who buy the product. The Road Tour cars have always been accessible for one and all to see to make their own findings.
This year’s AMSOIL/STREET RODDER Road Tour Shadow Rods XL27 roadster pickup is the latest in a line of successful projects. Based on a Shadow Rods XL27, the roadster pickup and chassis a rolling street rod shop showing off the latest in product and build standards.
The Shadow Rods XL27 chassis was delivered to Zane Cullen of Cotati Speed Shop for assembly, some good ol’ fashion fabrication, painting (PPG paints), and a bit of wood working. Cullen took the chassis replete with a Super Bell I-beam axle and a Moser-equipped 9-inch Ford rearend (AMSOIL filled) and began to apply his outstanding craftsmanship efforts. You will see at the corners Pete & Jakes socks, Wilwood disc brakes, and Wheel Vintiques wheels wrapped in Coker rubber. (The XL27 will be showcased at varying times with one of four wheel-and-tire combos: Wheel Vintiques powdercoated red steelies outfitted with Canadian Merc caps surrounded by Coker bias-ply skins; Wheel Vintiques cream-colored artillery wheels with caps and rings; again wrapped in Coker bias-ply, Wheel Vintiques black powdercoated rim and red centers with stainless wires and radial Coker rubber; and last, Wheel Vintiques black OE steelies with spider caps and the popular Coker Dirt Track front and rear rubber.)
Other chassis components include the Flaming River steering box, Totally Stainless fasteners, and loads of brightwork applied by Sherm’s Custom Plating. Between the ’32 ‘rails is the powertrain made of a Smeding “big” 427-inch small-block Ford V-8 (based on a 351 with 460 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque filled with AMSOIL engine oil), a Gearstar-prepped Ford AOD overdrive that Gearstar develops into a Level IV with a 10-inch lockup converter (AMSOIL filled), which includes Lokar Performance Product shifter and cables, and the Moser nodular centersection (AMSOIL gear lube) is used along with a 3-spline TrueTrac differential, 3.50 Motive Gear ring-and-pinion, custom alloy axles, and the brand-new Moser 9-inch round back housing. Other engine appointments include a PerTronix ignition, Patriot headers and exhaust system with SFI VaraFlow stainless mufflers, and Aeromotive fuel system, and custom C. Cook Enterprises air cleaner and valve covers.
The Shadow Rods PPG Sonic Blue painted body (outfitted with a C. Cook. Enterprises hood and grille shell and filled with an Alumicraft grille insert) is loaded with plenty of Dynamat to quiet and cool the occupants, Rod Tops top and window curtains (the truck is equipped with Steele Rubber Products weatherstripping), Wise Guys seating in conjunction with Time Machines Unlimited interior, and Flaming River steering column and wheel. The Vintage Air heat/cool system, Custom Autosound stereo, Auto Meter gauges along with the Greening Automotive lighting are coupled via Painless Performance wiring. Keeping the pain and brightwork shining and looking like new falls to California Car Covers’ latest new product Golden Shine car care products. (Of course, the real challenge will be teaching Road Tour chauffeur Jerry Dixey how to use a polish rag!)
Visually one of the focal points on this year’s ride is the pickup bed. The bed wood comes by way of Bed Wood and Parts, add to this a very nifty rack, cargo locking system from Mac’s Custom Tie-Downs, and custom gear bags. Cotati built the good-looking “floating” platform that sits above the bed (Bed Wood and Parts) and between the wooden sides, which holds the oversized gear bag made by Francis Minaglia.
The interior is loaded with street rod delights, like a Time Machines Unlimited interior and the Wise Guys fully adjustable, heated bucket seats. The dash is fitted with Auto Meter gauges, Vintage Air heat/cooling ducts and their respective control knobs, suspended from the dash is a Flaming River steering column and wheel. Other rodding components include the Lokar Lakester Series throttle and pedal pads, shifter, and one very important item you can’t see but surely can hear – the Custom Autosound Secret Stereo.
When you read this article, Dixey will have driven the ’10 Road Tour roadster pickup nearly 15,000 miles well on his way to 20,000-plus miles for the summer. That’s pretty incredible when you think about it – a street rod driven upwards of 25,000 miles in one summer from coast to coast. How many of us have driven our street rods 25,000 miles, regardless of the number of summers, and thrown in nearly faultless performance? I dare say precious few. The Road Tour proves you can have a good-looking, well-performing street rod using nothing more than what’s available.
In its 15th year, the Road Tour has proven you can drive a street rod anywhere at anytime.
The very cool headlights come by way of Greening Auto Company.
The potent Ford comes from the Smeding catalog and offers 427 inches producing 460 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque. Plenty of AMSOIL engine oil makes sure the engine runs true to form. Air cleaner and valve covers are from C. Cook Enterprises. The patriot headers provide plenty of exit room for spent gases but also give the roadster pickup a certain ‘tude.
“Styles” laid down lines that accented the brilliant PPG Sonic Blue pain, making it stand out even more.
The bed sides are neatly trimmed wood by Bed Wood and Parts.
Another Greening treatment are the taillights.
The Wise Guys adjustable seats with heaters was upholstered by Time Machines Unlimited, which did all the interior stitchwork. Other appointments include Lokar e-brake, shifter, and pedals.
The steering column and wheel come by way of Flaming River. Auto Meter gauges and the Vintage Air heating and A/C controls are more dash-mounted pieces.
Custom Autosound provides the cool tunes via a hidden stereo that’s remote controlled, which for most of us would be fine but for Road Tour chauffeur Jerry Dixey it requires going to night school! (Jerry, I just couldn’t resist.)
Lokar got the nod for the interior “foot work,” which includes a Lakester throttle pedal and pedal pads in the chromed and drilled finish.
Auto Meter supplied the traditional-style gauges. Pictures from right to left are the oil pressure, fuel, and volt gauges. The four knobs operate the Vintage Air heater and air conditioning functions.
Pete & Jakes supplied several of the suspension components, including the steering arms, I-beam axle, tube shocks in front and perch bolts.
Wilwood black finish Dynalite calipers are used along with dual-bolt pattern hobs.
The Pete & Jakes Viper coilover shocks are found in the rear while traditional P&J tubes are up front.
The Wheel Vintiques cream-colored artillery wheels with caps and rings are wrapped with Coker Firestone DeLuxe Champions.
The Wheel Vintiques black powdercoated rims with red centers with “V8” caps sans rings and stainless steel spokes are covered with Coker Excelsior tires measuring in front 6.00x16 and in back at 7.00x18.
The Wheel Vintiques OE black steelies roll with spider caps all surrounded by the always-popular Coker Dirt Track rubber with 5.00x15 in front and 8.20x17 in back.
The Patriot exhaust features a pair of stainless VaraFlow mufflers with electric motor and valve assembly allowing you to tailor the exhaust sound while you drive.
An external Aeromotive electric fuel pump is attached to the framerail. Note the batter kill switch located alongside the pump.
Mac’s Custom Tie-Downs supplied the VersaTie aluminum track and the custom soft luggage (that anchors to the track) giving Road Tour pilot Dixey plenty of room to hide his laundry as he spends a summer of fun relaxing his way across America in the Shadow Rods XL27. Note the Shadow Rods gas tank neatly tucked at the forefront of the bed.
The VersaTie tracks utilize quick-release anchors to hold cargo in place and feature quick release operation. A single stud tie-down ring lock into track in one location.
The incredibly good-looking bed wood and the sides were crafted by Bed Wood and Parts. Te VersaTie aluminum track comes from Mac’s Custom Tie-Downs and the tank is Shadow Rods.
Zane Cullen and his staff fit a great deal between the Shadow Rods ’32 ‘rails, which includes a Smeding 427 Ford V-8, Gearstar Ford overdrive trans, plumbing, wiring, and exhaust system, just to name a few. Exhaust system focal points are the Patriot VaraFlow mufflers that fit neatly between the Shadow Rods control arms and in front of the Moser0equipped Ford 9-inch rearend. All the brightwork was handled by Sherm’s Custom Plating.
Cotati Speedo Shop got the nod to make the handy, good-looking “floating” rack (with wood from Bed Wood and Parts) that sits above the bed and between the wooden sides. The gear bag was made by Francis Minaglia who also helped with the installation of Rod Tops/Time Machines interior kit, the top, the carpet, and the tonneau cover.
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