The Coal Bin Roadster

Project Description

I would describe this car as a traditionally styled hot rod/salt flat inspired car. It isn’t a true period-correct traditional car, I don’t have that much skill or patience! I wanted something that I could drive everyday. I didn’t want it so nice that I wouldn’t park it in a parking deck for 8 hours, so it is perfect for me! I have a lot of fun driving this car, rain or shine. When I bought the car, I was told it was used to store coal for the winter in Michigan, hence the name, the Coal Bin. Trust me you don’t drive a roadster in the winter in MI anyway!

Project Owner

Owner/Builders  Matt Hurley / Colfax, NC Chassis by Alan Thornton of Flatlanders Hot Rods
Car Designer  Matt Hurley
Social Links  Instagram:  @Hurley50

Car Specs

Year/Model  1930 Ford Roadster
Body Type  Ford Steel Body
Chassis  ASC 32 rails, Pete and Jakes axles and parts
Engine Specs  1964 Chevy 283, bored 60 over, mild cam
Brakes  Front: 1939 Lincoln Drums / Rear: 9″ Ford Drums

Wheels  1940 Ford
Tires  Coker Excelsior Stahl Sport Radial
Paint  Satin Black, wetsanded and buffed to gloss
Interior  Still under construction
Body / Metal Work  Matt Hurley

The Start

Before: I found the car behind a garage with the rear quarter upside down in the ground. Obviously, it didn’t run. My dad found the roadster because he has the pulse on all the cars in my hometown. I traded two Maytag hit and miss engines with a $25 refund. I took the fenders off first and my dad got it running before I started working on it 6 months after purchase.
After: I couldn’t wait to change the grill shell. I worked on the car most nights and weekends for almost a year. I worked alone mostly, but I had help from my dad when he came down. I called him a lot and shipped parts back and forth. It took a year to make it driveable. My first ride was amazing even though it ran horribly because the timing was off. Now, it is my daily driver.

About the Build

What led you to build this specific car?
I’ve always wanted a roadster.

Are you a professional car builder?
No, it’s just a hobby. I design furniture.

How long did the build take? (from zero to riding the car)
It took about a year to get it to driving. My wife hated that year.

Other than yourself, whom else did you find invaluable as a relationship to make the car a reality?
My wife and my dad.

How often do you use the car?
Almost everyday

When showing the car what do you tend to point out the most?
The dash panel, by Grace and Co. parts

What part of the build results surprised you the most?
The stance turned out well.

What part of the build turned out to be so hard you’d avoid it in the future?
Fixing rust. Next time, I’ll start with a better car.

What wisdom gained from your build experience would you offer to someone considering building a car like yours.
Finish the entire car before putting it on the road or it will never get finished.

Closer Look

Photo Credits:  Matt Hurley, Phillip Planes

Share Your 32 Ride

If you own a 1926-1932 fenderless, highboy/vintage styled car and would like to share your build experience with the Fuel32 tribe, send us an email with a short description and a few car pics for review. We're always looking to celebrate the success of the vintage car craftsmen.

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