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1931 Ford "Bonneville" Roadster


Thomas C. McGinnity 1931 Ford Roadster, Street Rod/Racer


We started collecting parts for this project back in the mid 70's. VWT (Jim Briglia) made a body for us to Chassis Dynamics specifications (Bob Cuneo) constructed the Hot Rod from parts supplied. Cheech at the shop did all the tin work. (Dash, Floors, Side panels, etc.) We used the 1978 rules book published by SCTA/BNI(Southern California Timing Association / Bonneville Nationals Inc.) to build the car for runs at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, and some local street racing. 

The motor was a left over crate motor for the 1976 deTomaso Pantara. The C6 tranny was out of a new heavy duty Ford Van which was being converted to diesel power by the dealership. 
We added a 6-71 GMC Blower, 2-4's, Herb Gebler in Maryland made the 180 degree Stainless Steel headers. It has a Winters Quick Change rear end, Koni coil over shocks with ladder bars and a panhard bar. 4-Bar (Reimer Machine Works in Canada) front suspension with his 4.5" dropped tube axle. 

The top photo shows the car as it is now. In the early 80's we experienced a Fuel cell fire, which did in the fiberglass body. Read an article about a California company that was stamping out body panels for 1931 Ford roadsters. We figured out what was needed to assemble the roadster around the roll cage. They were planning on vending at the Fall Hershey Swap Meet, so we met and loaded the pieces into fellow WSRA club member Rupe Keil's Ford station wagon. 
You can see the excellent quality of their pieces, as we paint & make tabs to mount the sheet metal. We are using Art Morrison Rod Ends and assorted bits for the ladder bars, etc. 

Over the week end we tack welded the rod end bungs in place for a trial fit-up today. We want to be able to lower the car and keep the proper pinion angle. 

Colin Gentle of GT Marketing, Inc. designed a logo for our race wear and such. 


For earlier articles on this re-build go to:

For more on this rebuild go to