1957 Ford Custom 501ci Big-Block Gasser Gold

- in Cars

Don Gordon’s 1957 Ford Custom is not just some rough and tumble ode to the bad boy doorslammers of drag racing’s Golden Age. The attention to detail on this car means it’s as gorgeous as any show car. In fact, it’s Gasser Gold.

Like most builds, this one really started years before Gordon could do anything but imagine owning such a car. He was a kid gearhead building models of his favorite cars and admiring what he’d see in magazines or driving by him on his hometown streets. He wasn’t brand loyal either, but when a friend of his brother’s stopped by the family home with a 1957 Ford, Gordon was smitten. “I’ve loved ’57 Fords ever since,” he says.

1957 Ford Custom Gasser Gold left side
At the same time, the Gasser classes were still very popular in drag racing and Gordon loved the look of a nose-high, straight front axle car, though when he was finally able to drive a car the class had all but faded away and muscle cars took their place in his imagination. He would own a few muscle cars throughout the years, including a 1971 GTO Judge clone and a 1970 340 Dart.

When Nostalgia Racing started to become popular Gordon noticed and the idea of building his own gasser to drive on the street began to gain traction. For raw material he knew it had to be a 1957 Ford and it had to be a 2- door sedan. “I always wanted a post car because they just seemed to look cooler, tougher than a hard top,” says Gordon. “They were lighter and just more plain…not a lot of trim, radio delete…so that’s just the way I wanted to go.”

1957 Ford Custom Gasser Gold right
He found two candidates in Wasaga Beach, ON, one a 1957 Meteor 2-door post and the other a 1957 Ford Custom, also a post car. While both cars were essentially in similar shape, the Ford was just a little better so he decided that would be the car he would work with. “I didn’t know at the time how rare the Meteor was,” Gordon admits. “So I took the best parts from it then sold it to a friend of mine.”

The Ford project started and Gordon had a very clear vision of what he wanted to build: a bare bones, subtle car that would appear to be very much a Gasser someone in the 1960s would have built, only nicer.

1957 Ford Custom Gasser Gold dashboard
The first order of business was finding a builder that would be true to Gordon’s vision and he went through a few before he finally settled on Rob Purcell out of Harriston, ON. Purcell is a master craftsman and the car proves it. For instance, instead of just replacing the trunk sheet metal with aftermarket pieces Purcell custom fabricated many pieces, including a neat compartment for the battery and a relocated fuel filler neck and the results are gorgeous.

He also replaced the floors and floor braces. Under the hood he fabricated inner fender braces and a rad support that really clean things up while letting you know this was meant to be mimic a race car, thus the lightening holes.

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