Table of Contents
- 1 Tell me the story behind this one, what made you want to customize this 1936 Chevy truck? Was it something you already had?
- 2 It must have been quite exciting to launch into a project so big. Was this your first project like this? How did you feel at the time?
- 3 It’s great to see you have so much faith in yourself. Was there any point when you felt like you might doubt yourself or have any second thoughts when working on this project?
- 4 This truck has amazing character. Where did you get the ideas for the small little bits of detail?
- 5 It must have been time consuming, how long did it take?
- 6 Ha, I quite like that analogy. What would you say was the most challenging part of the build?
- 7 Tell me a bit about the engine and the modifications.
- 8 Related
You may have noticed recently that we had a special guest share his custom car project with us including behind the scene photos. Sean Puz is a metal fabricator in central Florida with a little bit of a hobby going on the side. We’ve already taken a look at his insane ratrod and so today Sean is going to share with us his very first project, his 1936 Chevy conversion.
Before I get into the nitty gritty of Sean’s interview, you can follow Sean’s incredible projects through his Facebook page, his Instagram, his Pinterest or via his website. And if you have any of your own questions for Sean, drop them in the comments below.
Tell me the story behind this one, what made you want to customize this 1936 Chevy truck? Was it something you already had?
A few years ago, I began to notice ratrods. I’d actually had similar ideas already as a kid and when I was 17 I had a ‘different’ car – everyone called it the Mad Max Mobile. Jumping to today, I decided to build one. I’m blessed that this was something I was capable of doing.
These days it’s a lot easier to find inspiration with the internet, so I’d been doing some surfing. I was looking at loads of different cars, ratrods and custom builds but I decided I really liked the 1936 Chevy truck, and me being a huge Chevy fan, that’s what I wanted. Luckily I found this one in North Dakota, so I bought it and had it shipped to Pittsburgh – where I lived at the time.
It must have been quite exciting to launch into a project so big. Was this your first project like this? How did you feel at the time?
This was my first project like this at this scale. Previously I’d only done cosmetic alterations but this one was a total re-do. I stripped everything except the cab and the grille and then set to work.
I guess it would have been pretty scary if I’d stopped to think about it, but I believe enough in myself that fear doesn’t really come into play. I’ve done a lot of other projects that give me the confidence I need and so I knew it would turn out the way I wanted it – also because I knew I wouldn’t stop until it did.
It’s great to see you have so much faith in yourself. Was there any point when you felt like you might doubt yourself or have any second thoughts when working on this project?
I never really doubted myself. If I think it’s a project I can’t handle, I just won’t do it. It’s as simple as that. As far as second thoughts are concerned, it’s kind of the same thing.
The main issue I had for the most part was ‘when will I ever be able to drive this!?’ Sometimes it becomes very hard to keep going on a project when there’s this amount of work. There just seems to be so much that goes into it, it takes a while before you begin to see any real results. But once I got past that bit, the more I did, the more incentive I got – thank God!
This truck has amazing character. Where did you get the ideas for the small little bits of detail?
Yes, the truck has tons of details. I like to look at other people’s work up until a certain point but I don’t ever want to ‘contaminate’ my own thinking. Fortunately I’m quite an ‘outside the box’ thinker and so most things come to me naturally.
Before I’d even bought the truck, I spent ages visiting as many flea markets as possible. They’re the best places for these types of projects. Then it would be a nearby junk yard is always nice and, last but not least, a Fathers’ garage to rummage through. Ha! I find it easy to walk through a market, or a junk yard and see something and say ‘I know where that’s gonna go’.
It must have been time consuming, how long did it take?
Yes! Ironically, this 1936 Chevy took a year and a half which is the same amount of time as the new ratrod. It just goes to show that re-doing something can take just as long as building something from scratch.
I feel that doing both these projects can be compared to a woman having a child. So similar except I have to work a lot harder and the pregnancy lasts longer, but at the end of it all, I have a newborn too.
Ha, I quite like that analogy. What would you say was the most challenging part of the build?
The most challenging part? Well, like the ratrod, I’m inclined to say the whole thing, but building the bed and framework for the dump mechanism with this one was tough. Getting the engine and transmission located was tough. But, probably, the hardest part was the front suspension. Whew! That took a lot of work. And many do overs. I’m glad it’s done!
Tell me a bit about the engine and the modifications.
This is my favorite part. So the engine is a GM performance crate engine – these are awesome. This one is a 6.2 liter, all aluminum engine and very similar to the new Corvette engine, except this one has a carburetor just like the ratrod. To me, it’s not a hotrod if doesn’t have a carb – that might be a little old school.
This engine has 545 hp and 470 foot lbs of torque. The transmission is a turbo 400 from GM which was built by a good friend of mine. The rear end is from a race car which is called a quick change because you can change the gear ratio in minutes. There are also Ohlins race shocks and springs which make it an incredible ride.
Mechanically, this truck is all brand new. It even has power brakes, power rack and pinion steering and power windows. This fools a lot of people. When I’m driving about a lot of people think it’s just a pile of junk, until I leave them in the dust! I’m really pleased with how this 1936 Chevy rides, runs and handles.
Thanks again Sean. This 1936 Chevy truck is amazing and I think it’s a real testament to your skills. It’s great how you can use your talents in such a creative and inspiring way. If you missed seeing Sean’s Ratrod, you can find it here. But if you have any questions for Sean, drop them in the comments below!