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Little Classics Feature: 06 February 2014

A Classic Ford Transformed

Little Classics are delighted to be reporting on the remarkable transformation of a classic 1935 Ford Model Y into a fully custom built Hot Rod. This extensive nut and bolt restoration allows us to gain an entertaining insight and expert advice as we bring you regular updates and Q&As, from start to finish.

Classic Hot Rods can divide audiences, from the greatest of advocates to those who believe classics should be kept original. However, lover or hater, you can’t deny the character and presence of a well-designed and professionally built custom Hot Rod.

This professional restoration will be undertaken by Mike Hill at Survivor Customs, who is renowned for his expert workmanship in the Hot Rod fraternity, having won numerous awards and featuring on the front cover of Custom Car Magazine. This will be no run-of-the-mill weekend project, but a fantastic story, bringing an enviable classic restoration to life.

Classic Ford Model Y RestorationSo, this is where it all begins, as this lovely little classic Ford arrives in a sorry and somewhat unloved state on the back of a trailer. Mike has his work cut out.

Phase 1: The Ford is completely stripped to its bare shell

Classic Ford Y strippedClassic Ford Model Y Restoration strippedThe first stage was to completely strip the Ford Model Y to the extent that all that remained was its shell. After dismantling the Ford, the roof had to be cut by four inches and the body had to be shortened by a further 12 inches to create the truck shell.

Classic Ford Model Y TruckThe image above shows the extent to which the Ford has been stripped. After being stripped it was then welded, cleaned and polished.

The next stage was to build the Custom Chassis. Since this restoration will be completed in-house without any outside help, Mike had to build a complete custom Chassis (below).

Classic Ford Model Y Chassis


Phase 2: The Rolling Chassis

The front of the Chassis was taken from an old Ford truck (Fig 1 - below). The grill was then adjusted to fit the Model Y and a fully custom built front axle and a quarter elliptical front suspension was created.

The engine mounts were fabricated and fitted to the Ford Model Y (Fig 2 - below).

Classic Ford Model Y Custom Hot RodPhase 3: Fitting the Gearbox

Here you can see (Fig 3 - above) that the custom fabricated gearbox has now been mounted and adjusted to fit the Ford Model Y crossmember.

After mounting the gearbox Mike had to shorten the BMW E30 prop shaft by 4 inches (Fig 4- above). This allowed the 5 speed BMW M60 gear box which came from a Kia Sportage be be fitted.

Classic Ford Y Hot Rod restorationThe BMW M62 alternator was then relocated beneath the engine (Fig 5) and was modified with custom made mounts and adjuster. This was a necessity to help create more clearance on the chassis.

The original brakes and clutch (Fig 6) on the Ford Model Y were relocated and modified to fit the in-house custom built chassis.

Classic Ford Y truck Hot RodThis restoration may have only just begun, but the Ford Model Y has already come a long way, shrugging off its original stance and giving signs of its new intentions. The classic Ford has jettisoned years of grime, rust and paint, beginning a complete transformation into something a whole lot more imposing. This all sits on a new custom built chassis, giving hugely improved capabilities to cope with the thunderous power expected from its new heart; a 3.5 BMW M62 engine!

We will shortly be bringing you the next phase of this classic Ford transformation, but you can also keep up to date through the Cherished Vehicle Insurance blog. They will be hosting a question and answer session with Mike next week, so if you have any questions you’d like answering head over to CVI’s Facebook page and tell them your questions. They’d love to hear your thoughts on the project!


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