Oscar Gamble’s Hot, Red and Righteous 1932 Ford
Editors Note – The West Coast Nationals has always attracted the country’s top street rods and new creations from influential builders. Goodguys celebrates their presence by making this event the home for the Goodguys/BASF America’s Most Beautiful Street Rod award. This honor recognizes beauty, style, and refinement in 1948-and-earlier street rod construction. Five finalists are selected, and then a committee evaluates and ranks the finalist on beauty and design, in addition to quality-of-construction elements like fit, finish, and attention to detail. George Poteet’s gorgeous “Three Penny” ’36 Ford Roadster was named the 2019 winner, but each of the finalists warrants a closer look such as Oscar Gamble’s 1932 Ford shown here.
How many red ’32 Fords are on the road today? Many thousands, probably. But you’d be challenged to find a red 1932 Ford as tight and on-the-money as Oscar Gamble’s all-steel ride. It just looks right from top to bottom.
How did this shiny coupe with the just-right stance come to be? The story goes that Oscar used to walk by one like it when he was 14. That planted the seed to own one someday. Years passed and he found this three-window after it spent 40 years in a barn. Yes, there are still barn finds left, they’re just harder to locate. Teenage dreams and barn finds turn into award-winning rides.
Starting with the all steel three-window coupe body, today’s version of Oscar’s 1932 Ford is the result of Brad Starks Rod and Custom’s construction efforts, topped by brilliant custom-blended Axalta paint called Blue Blood Red by Randy’s Body Shop. The body is slightly modified with bobbed fenders, reworked front frame horn covers, and a host of other minor refinements and tweaks. It’s as straight and tight as they come.
The Ford rides on a frame built by Brad Starks’ crew that features a Vega steering box and five-inch dropped Magnum axle. A nine-inch Ford rearend housing 3.70 gears rides in back. Kinmont-style brakes from Johnson’s Hot Rod Shop handle the stopping chores. Real Rodders wheels sit on the corners – 15×5-inch in front and 16×8 in the rear.
Power comes from a 500-plus-horsepower 6.2-liter Chevy LS3 V8. A Borla induction system sits between Greening Auto Company valve covers. Stock headers feed the waste gases through a custom exhaust system built by Brad Starks Rod and Custom. A GM 4L70E transmission handles the gear selection chores.
The stylish interior features brown leather on the door panels and Wise Guys seats, courtesy of Steve Holcomb at Pro Auto Custom Interiors. A Big Ol’ Gauge package from Classic Instruments sits in a custom woodgrain dash fabricated by Brad Starks. A custom shifter mimics that of a column-shift three speed.
Hot, red and righteous, Oscar’s 1932 Ford coupe is one of those timeless street rods that is sure to look great for decades to come.
Photos by John Jackson