Aiea, Hawaii, heavy equipment operator Charlie Souza received the remains of a 1956 Ford F-100 big-window pickup for free from a good buddy. The friend figured Souza would probably part the old truck out, or eventually dispose of it entirely, since it was in such bad shape.
"You can imagine the look on his face when I drove up with the finished product," commented Charlie. "I knew exactly what I wanted to do with the old Ford right from the start."
There aren't many classic Ford F-100s running around on the island of Oahu, especially big-window F-100s. You can probably count them all on one hand. With that thought in mind, Souza set out to build the nicest F-100 in the 50th state. Has he accomplished his goal? You be the judge!
"The first thing I did was replace the chassis. It was old and all rusted out, and not really worth rebuilding." Rather than go to all the time and expense to hunt up a suitable replacement, Souza ordered up a new 2x3-inch mild steel custom replacement chassis from Sacramento, California's Wood Brothers. Charlie's new set of framerails features a '78 Lincoln Versailles independent front suspension complete with late-model Lincoln Versailles four-piston front disc brakes and power steering and a set of KYB gas-charged shocks. Out back, Souza's '56 F-100 enjoys a '78 Lincoln Versailles nine-inch disc brake rearend and 3.00:1 gearing, riding on a Wood Brothers four-link suspension with Aldan Eagle coilover shocks.
In the wheel and tire department, Charlie selected a set of E.T.'s new "Gasser" wheels, sized 15x3 inches in the front and 16x12 inches in the rear. To that he added a set of P195/20R15-inch front and P295/60R16-inch rear BFGoodrich Radial T/As, which give the old Effie a genuine hot rod look.