The unique body mods on the F-1 are what attracted Mike to the truck in the first place, beginning with the 3 1/2-inch top chop; shaved door handles; and wider fiberglass front fenders, rear fenders, and running boards. The hood was smoothed and the original chrome accents around the side louvers eliminated. Painted to match the body color, the factory Ford grille bar was fitted with a set of tri-bar headlights, providing plenty of illumination when Mike and Susan return from late-night cruise-ins. Around back, a shortened '56 Ford bed modernizes the profile of the vintage truck. It's fitted with oak slats, painted-to-match steel strips, and a new rear pan with bright LED taillights. Twin exhaust tips exit behind the rear wheels on both sides. The bumpers on the truck account for the majority of chrome on the body. The F-1 rolls on American Torq-Thrust rims, 15x6 in front and 15x10 in the rear, wrapped in BFGoodrich 60- and 70-series T/A radials. The burgundy paint with ghost flames was the perfect finishing touch to the exterior.
Susan and Mike spend lots of time inside the truck enjoying the comfortable bench seat upholstered in matching burgundy tweed. Upgrades include a Billet Specialties steering wheel and VDO gauges set in a reworked dash. The Vintage Air blows cold and the Panasonic stereo, with its pair of 6x9 speakers mounted under the seat combine to add a grand touring touch, making the truck a fun, long-distance cruiser. The custom headliner along with the Billet Specialties door handles and window cranks complete the interior mods.
While Mike is sticking to his original approach of "not making the truck a ten," he still has lots of plans for improving his favorite weekend driver, including upgrading the bed, adding new bumpers, and redoing the interior. It will never be a trailer queen since he and Susan would miss the fun of driving their cool custom cruiser to shows throughout the Southeast. One final note: judging from the list of awards that Mike listed in his tech sheet, apparently, you can have your cake (trophies) and eat it (drive your truck) too!