Getting A Little Exorcise At Gillam Drive

Gillam Drive 2014 133

This blog often calls for more people here in Western Australia to make use of the motoring heritage of this state when planning a hot rod or kustom car project. And that heritage is not just about the pre-1948 American-sourced cars that we know and love. I want to see more pre-48 British and European cars entering the hobby. I want to see the pre-90’s Japanese cars treated the same way – not just current rice rockets with Nismo stickers and 888 licence plates, either…

Imagine my pleasure at seeing this Ford Consul on the day. It is a 50’s model from Great Britain and from the looks of it, well maintained. This is a feat when you look at the light construction of some of the post-war British cars and the parlous state of their engines and electrics. See previous blogs that dealt with Whiteman Park and Pinjarra car shows to see what I mean. If you have an electrical background try to look at some of the wiring through cracks in your fingers…

Gillam Drive 2014 135

Now the bonnet was not up on this Consul but I suspect a small engine in there. If the owner has replaced it I hope we get to see what it has become, but as the interior has been left stock, I suspect the mill has too. No bad thing, if it works. Note the interior is of the era that saw white or cream steering wheels and dash panels – not something you generally see today as all the designers try to darken down the surfaces to reduce glare. I think that they realise the severe slopes on modern windscreens would throw back images of light panels no matter what angle the sun was at.

But as an aside – A new cream-coloured Fiat 500 pulled up to the lights in Berwick Street on Friday and I noted that interior dash panels, instrument housing, and steering wheel were in cream colour. It was delightful – if the car was better built and/or cheaper to buy it would be desirable on style alone.

Gillam Drive 2014 134

Back to the Consul. The reason the bonnet was down is instantly evident. Take it from me that while the black base colour is stock Ford Consul, the artwork is not… Love it or hate it, you can’t avoid seeing it and being impressed with the degree of artistry and amount of time that must have been spent painting it. I take it that the artwork is sealed under protective glazes – it would be criminal to park under a tree full of birds otherwise. Likewise I hope that the owner does not park it down at Safety Bay in the constant salt wind or out in the open when hail is in the offing. We saw enough of that a few years ago…

Gillam Drive 2014 136

The especial nature of this paint job and the transformation that it does to a standard car are greatly encouraging to those of us who drive standard little sedans and have little prospect of performing major rodding surgery on them. It means that we can eventually revitalise the cars with a trip to the spray booth. The problem will be trying to design something nice – I have already started Photoshopping pictures of my Suzuki.



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