"Get On It!"

The Year of the Rat - Rat Rod Inspiration - Part 1

by motorfoot 8/9/2008 4:59:00 AM

Are you looking for your dream car? Are you researching the new car offerings, but nothing is compelling you? Oh sure, there are a lot of great new cars on the market and more about to arrive in dealer show rooms, but you can't shake that feeling in your gut that something's missing, something's wrong.

Well my friend, you are not alone. The Apocalypse is neigh. Revival is on the way. Behold, the Rat Rod!

"When an industry gets too consumed with itself, whether it be politics or music, the very fans that support the industry start feeling left out..."

Rat Rod, you say? A hunk of rusty old iron? Yes, I say, and here's why. When an industry gets too consumed with itself, whether it be politics or music, the very fans that support the industry start feeling left out, disconnected, discontent. And that is the breeding ground of reform. And reform always goes back to its roots for correction and direction. The Rat Rod is having an impact on our collective psyche. And that's a good thing.

I see several positive aspects about this phenom:

  • A revival of personal creativity.
  • A reintroduction, albeit indirectly, to tratitional hot rods.
  • A reminder of our do-it-yourself roots.
  • A transformation of your garage into a workshop and social gathering spot, cause you're going to need a little help from your friends!

Maybe you have thought about taking up welding, or try your hand at spraying paint or flames, or taking apart an engine? With a rat rod, you can try stuff with no worries. What can you screw up? Can you ruin the resale value? Hell no! Well, maybe a little. But who cares, you bought it cheap!

Lets get back to the basics, back to the roots. Lets build something, and let the others buy $80,000 hot rods. And if you can't build it, so what? Just buy something cheap and do what you can. The point is to jump in and give it a try.

ebay Finds

Just within the last few weeks, I have witnessed some pretty cool rides for less than 13,500 on ebay. Below are just a few examples.

I really wanted this one. The body is original 1928 Ford and no rust holes! It had a unique side profile with 20 inch rear wheels. It sold for 13,500.

This is a 1931 Dodge 3 window coupe. I don't hear about Dodges too often but this one looks mighty fine. The current bid for this is 13,700. It will probably go for a few thousand more due to the style and paint. There is a Bacardi like bat on the rear, and the name of the car is Bootleg Special.

The bids on this 1929 were not high enough to meet reserve so it didn't sell. It has four link rear suspension with air bags. It was really bare bones with a sheet metal bench, a dash consisting of a metal rod to support a few guages. For those who don't build frames, or chop and channel, it would have been a perfect starting point for the remainder of the customization.

Agree or disagree? Do you relate? Share your thoughts here - comment on this article now. 


eBay Rats - More pics in MOTORFOOT Gallery.

MFTV - MOTORFOOT's collection of 30 Rat Rod / Hot Rod videos on YouTube. 

MF Video - Check out the the video pictorial of this article on YouTube! 


Rat Rod photo "Gone Postal" used with permission from artist Michael Ulman. Photograph by Craig Roth.


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