-This story was sent to me by Henry Beecher. Thank you, Henry! -

My name is Henry Beecher, I live in Texas City, Texas. 

This is my journey into building my first hot rod. 

I’ll start with a story that my buddy (Anthony) told me that put a fire underneath my ass. He told me a story about his dad, that he always wanted an old BMW. He had the money, but never bought one. Then it was too late, he passed without ever getting that car. 

In the beginning of 2021, I started searching for a Model A coupe. I told all my buddies what I was looking for and the search was on. I got a call from another car guy (Michael) about a 1930 body in Buda, TX. He sent me some pictures and told me that this is a great deal, with a solid body. This was in April 2021, and I was hesitating to jump into building a car from just a body - as I have never built one before. 

Not trying to make this a sob story, but on April 18th, 2021, my dad passed away.  I thought back to the story that Anthony told me about his dad. I thought to myself, don’t wait do it now. 

On April 24th, 2021, I went to my favorite car show - The Lone Star Deluxe, in Texas City TX.  After thinking about it, going over it again and again in my head - I said to myself, let’s do it. I called the guy in Buda, told him that I wanted the body and could be there the next morning. 

The next day, my brother and I loaded up and headed to Buda. A 3 plus hour drive, but in Texas that’s not very far. When we pulled up and saw the body sitting on top of some scaffolding, Michael was right - this body was solid. Little to no rust for a 91-year-old car. I got a body, frame, and grill. I was very excited to get this journey started.

I took the body to the shop I was working at the time to store it while I made room in my garage for it. I was starting from the ground up – and needed to get started with everything! I was going to build a frame but since I had never done it before, I decided to buy a frame so that I had a solid foundation to build from - I went with Boling Brothers. I’m glad I did. 

After receiving the frame, I continued to build the foundation of the car as the body still sat in the shop collecting dust. For the rear-end, I went with a Ford 9 inch with 3.55 gears from quick performance.  I built a 383 stoker with a TH350 transmission, with the help of my friend Bryan. It’s February 2022 now, moving along pretty good with the build. In May 2022, I finally brought the body home.  To get it on the frame, I built a truss from the wood the frame came in. It worked like a champ. I can’t count how many times I lowered and raised that body on that frame.

It took a couple of months, but I finally got the body down on the frame. That was a very good feeling, it finally started looking like a hot rod.

I continued to get as much as I could done in my spare time as the year ended. 

Rolling into 2023, my motivation was at an all-time high. I was looking forward to hearing this hot rod rumble. By February 2023, I had the steering completed, battery mounted and the gas tank in place. In March 2023, I started working on the inside sheet metal.  I made the drive shaft cover from an old fire extinguisher. 

I wanted to drive this car to the car show where I had decided to start this journey, The Lone Star Deluxe, two years after making the decision to build, but couldn’t get it done in time. I wasn’t going to rush things now, as I had come this far in a reasonable amount of time. 

When it came time for the wiring, I was not a fan at all. I called up my friend Glenn, we set up a day to get it done. It took both of us 12 hours, but we got it done. Let me tell you that wiring is a pain, even if it’s a Painless kit ha-ha. Finally ready for the next step. 

At the end of May 2023 - my friends Bryan, Glenn and I were at my house. Today was the day to finally hear this hot rod come to life. When it finally started up, I couldn’t get the smile off my face.  I was like a little kid on Christmas.  After every alarm went off in my house from the exhaust fumes, they asked me if I wanted to drive it around the block - HELL YES. We turned up the idle screw up a little, there was no gas pedal yet. I drove it around the block with the biggest smile on my face at idle. 

Just to think a couple of years ago I had a Model A body and now I’m driving around the block. I was very proud. 

In August 2023, I drove it to my first car show and won a trophy.  

Thanks for letting me tell my story. I am still working on the Model A and looking forward to building another hot rod in the future.


Alay Parker

Very cool story glad to know you and your journey

Henry Beecher

Thank you Jake for tell my story. Your podcast is awesome. Keep it going. Because it keeps US going.

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