Those who attended last weekend’s O’Reilly Auto Parts World of Wheels in Omaha got to see this super cool 1929 Ford out of Wichita, KS. The car was home built and is owned by Galen Esslinger. The “Ferris Flyer” this week’s Meguiar’s Ride of The Week!
How this car came to be: A few chassis parts were given to a friend of Galen’s that he had collected before falling ill preventing him from building the car of his dreams. Always wanting an open wheel 29 Roadster, Galen purchased the parts and started contemplating the project. Intrigued by how hot rods were built when troops returned from WWII, especially Southern California hot rods, he started referencing any resource possible to learn how to do the build. Especially mixing and matching parts to make them fit. Over the next several years he collected parts and gathered information form all over the United States. After many hours of mocking up the chassis, the hunt was on for a body.
One of his best friends, Gaylon Ferris (car named after his family), had inherited a ’29 roadster that had been sitting in a building for decades in Merck County Nebraska and he graciously sold it for the project. The roadster was pretty rough. It had been used to pump irrigation water for many years and used as the beater around the farm. After many months of work, the body was salvaged for the project.
In March of 2013 (6 years after purchasing the original parts), the chassis was complete and Galen was able to fire the motor. It took another 4 years before The body was completed and ready for final assembly, interior, and ready for its first drive.
The Hot Rod in Bullet Points:
- 266 Cubic Inch Full Race 8BA Flathead
- Custom built headers and hand built straight pipes
- Original Henry Ford body sits on an original frame
- 1933 Ford Axle (Dropped 3” in the early 1950’s)
- 1932 Ford unsplit Wish Bone
- 1932 Grill Shell and Insert with a ’32 headlamp bar
- Original ’32 center cross member & pedals
- Early Ford enclosed drive shaft
- 1936 banjo rear differential
- 1939 hydraulic brakes
- 1948 Ford F1 steering box and column
- 1946 Harley-Davidson headlights
- 1932 grill and a 1931 Ford Deluxe Roadster folding top
- AC comfort provided by Vintage Air
- Gauges are mounted in a vintage Chris Craft dash panel
- 1940 Ford Wheels with ’38 caps and rings with vintage Dunlap tires.
- 1939 Ford, Lincoln Zepher 26 tooth gear set
- Stressed leather with Vintage Mercedes top material and carpet
The car has the original windshield and the top assembly was chopped 2 1/8″. The rumble seat has been converted to a trunk lid and the rear floor and was raised to accept the step in the frame. The fuel tank was moved from the cowl to a 1927 Ford tank placed behind the seat, hood converted to 1932 Ford Center Hing and1948 Ford F1 front shock mounts have been installed. Sporting a chopped 1931 Ford Roadster folding top complete with custom steam bent wood bows that have been reshaped. The car is cared for with Meguiar’s.
“The most fun of the build were the people I met along way, learning the history and the techniques of the past” Galen said of his project.
Thanks for the great story and awesome hot rod, Galen! Interested in showing your vehicle at an Autorama event? Please visit www.autorama.com! For more information about the great line of Meguiar’s Car Care Products, please visit www.meguiars.com!