BOB RYDER April 26, 2023 All Feature Vehicles
John Bailey’s grandfather and his dad Robbie were the main influences in his life who got him hooked on custom cars and trucks.
He remembers growing up with his dad’s ’56 Ford F-100, and all through high school John was the guy with bitchin’ rides.
John and his wife Karen were celebrating their twenty-sxith wedding anniversary while attending the Barrett-Jackson auction in Palm Beach, Florida, where they noticed an eye-catching Yellow Flash ’65 Ford F-100 Flareside pickup highlighted with silver pearl flames. Karen fell in love with the truck, and like all good husbands, John exchanged a stack of greenbacks for the pink slip from the previous owner/builder Glen Van Buskirk from Castro Valley, California. After driving the ’65 for about six months, John decided to personalize the truck to his taste. He and his friend Tim Davis began the journey together.
Van Buskirk had removed the cab, front fenders, hood and bed, exposing the factory chassis. John and Tim extracted the twin I-beam front end and replaced it with a Jim Meyer Racing IFS cross member with upper and lower control arms that sandwich a pair of ’78 GMC truck spindles with Wilwood 13-inch cross-drilled, ball-milled, vented rotors with six-piston calipers. A Mustang II rack-and-pinion gives Yellow Flash lateral direction. The rolling bling is in the form of a pair of 18 x 8-inch Budnik Rocker polished satin aluminum wheels covered in 225/45R-18 Goodyear Eagle tires.
The original QA-1 coil-over shocks to allow for adjustable front suspension ride height. The factory rear leaf spring suspension was eliminated and substituted with a Jim Meyer Racing 4-link setup that anchors the Ford 9-inch rearend stuffed with 31-splined axles, 3.73 gears and a limited slip unit.
The factory gas tank was removed from inside the cab, and a 20-gallon stainless steel gas tank from Rock Valley was dropped in between and behind the Ford 9-inch rearend.
A Jim Meyer Racing panhard bar was mounted to the frame rail and rearend housing, and a pair of QA-1 coil-over shocks supports and dampens the rear suspension. In the rear, 20 x 10-inch Budnik Rocker polished satin aluminum wheels were wrapped in 275/45R20 Goodyear Eagle rubber.
The factory Ford-Edsel series V-8 was swapped out for a 1996 Ford 460-ci engine with EFI by the previous owner. John decided he wanted more grunt under the hood. The engine was totally disassembled, cleaned, machined and reassembled with all new performance components by Brinkley’s Auto Machine in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. The factory crankshaft was machined .010 and fit with a set of SCAT H-beam connecting rods and SRP pistons with Total Seal rings. A healthy Comp Cams camshaft and double roller timing chain kit were added. A set of Comp hydraulic lifters was linked to the Comp Magnum roller rockers with Magnum pushrods. The factory cast-iron heads were machined and set up with Comp single springs and Sportsman stainless steel intake and exhaust valves. A pair of chromed stock center bolt valve covers caps the valve train. A Pure Power 5-quart chromed oil pan was installed underneath the block. To circulate the engine’s coolant, a Weiand high volume aluminum water pump was bolted on, while a Be Cool four-row aluminum radiator completes the engine’s cooling system.
The electrical system stays charged with a Power Master 130-amp chrome alternator. A set of custom billet aluminum pulleys routes the serpentine belt. The rest of the electrical system is comprised of an MSD Blaster coil, Electronic Engine Control distributor and Taylor Spiro Pro 8mm blue silicone ignition wires. A pair of K&N air filters ensures clean air enters the fabricated Deetz Performance aluminum air box that feeds the EFI throttle body. A pair of Jet Hot ceramic-coated Sanderson shorty headers collect into a 3-inch exhaust that flows into a pair of Flowmaster Hush-Power II muffs. When all was said and done, the mighty 460 produces 400 lb-ft of torque and 425 hp.
The Ford C6 automatic transmission was rebuilt by Chuck Carter Transmissions in Davidsonville, Maryland. Chuck installed all new clutch packs, planetary and stator gears with a 10-inch convertor and 2,800-rpm stall. A Lokar tall shifter was also bolted up.
The original body mods, prep and paint work were split between Deetz Performance and Bartoni Auto Body of Dublin, California. Before sending the truck over to Bartoni, the cab, front fenders and custom one-piece Flareside bed were body dropped 8 inches. The front and rear 1965 bumpers were also narrowed for a snugger fit. The factory doors were shaved, and a pair of 1982 Fiat Spyder door handles was fused into the door skins, and one-piece electric side windows were installed. Bartoni was responsible for straightening and finishing the body’s sheet metal then priming and block sanding every little imperfection. The exterior/interior was sprayed PPG Flash Yellow, and then a set of very cool silver pearl flames with blue pinstripes was laid by Basil Platt of Concord, California. Some of the road chips and other minor imperfections were touched up by Nelson Body and Paint in Maryland. The truck bumpers were chrome plated by Hayward Bumper in Hayward, California.
Inside, the factory gauges and speed cluster were removed, filled in and smoothed. The original owner installed Autometer white face gauges, and water temp, fuel level, tachometer, speedometer, oil pressure and volt gauges were neatly inserted were the factory cluster used to reside. Keeping the audio simple, the crew at Ultimate Car Toys of Dublin installed a Ford six-CD head unit with iPod adapter into the dash. The sound was amplified by an Alpine unit that powers two tweeters in the dash and two 6-inch speakers stuffed in the kick panels; a pair of 8-inch subwoofers was mounted behind the bucket seats. A Vintage Air system with vents was mounted into the dash, and an Ididit chrome tilt steering column was capped with a Budnik Shock split grip black leather four-spoke black powder-coated billet aluminum steering wheel. The custom interior was created by the team at Finish Line Interiors from San Jose, California. A layer of Dyamat was installed before laying down the black carpet. A pair of 2008 Chevy Tahoe bucket seats was covered in dark charcoal leather and separated by a custom storage center console.
John’s Yellow Flash ’65 Ford draws attention wherever he rolls. The first two shows he attended, the truck took home an assortment of trophies. It’s pretty cool when you raise your garage door and see your ’65 Ford F-100 Flareside parked next to your ever-so-cool custom ’61 Ford F-100 unibody.