Paul Sykora's 1937 Ford Coupe
(from Volume 16, Issue 182)

Even when you try to conjure up images of a wild street car in your head, it is hard to top what Paul Sykora has made into a reality with his 1937 Ford Coupe. Not only is the car absolutely beautiful, it is also brutally fast. Indeed, if you want to see jaws drop, just stand around this ‘37 Ford at a car show - or better yet, see the reactions when it is started up. I guess it is easy to see why Paul chose to call the car “Blown Outta Proportion”.

At the heart of this beast is an Awesome Engines 540 cubic inch big block Chevy assembled by owner Paul Sykora and his friends, which runs on methanol and produces 2,000+ horsepower. Components used to achieve that include a Lunati crank and rods, Wiseco pistons, Dart Big M heads, mechanical fuel injection set up by Ralph Gorr on a custom intake, an Enderle “bug catcher” with 5-9/16 inch butterflies, and a BDS 1671 super-charger currently set up to produce 28 pounds of boost. Sparking the mixture is an MSD ignition, while a set of stainless steel 2-1/4 inch headers and exhaust tubing were crafted by Randy Casey, with a set of Burns stainless steel mufflers cutting down some decibels. When you put out that much horesepower you need a strong transmission, so Paul chose a Jeffco billet 4-speed with neutral and reverse gears, a Browell bellhousing and a Bull Racing 2-disc clutch. The third member is a Moser with a 40 spline spool and axles, Weld Racing wheels were used all around (16x16” double bead locks in back, and 17x5” front runners), Hoosier tires were wrapped around them, and brakes on all four corners are Wildwood 4 piston calipers.

The backbone of the car is a chrome moly chassis by Randy Casey at The Race Car Factory, which was powder coated, and is NHRA certified to 6.00 elapsed times. Custom fabrication of miscellaneous parts was done by Kevin Harbin at Sunbelt Metal. Allowing the car to achieve the perfect profile when parked, yet be raised up for driving is the job of the Air Ride Technologies system, which utilizes a Ride Pro 2 control system and the Shockwave 3.0 shock and air spring combos.

Surrounding the full roll cage is a Wild Rod Factory fiberglass body, which was painted in a two-tone silver and black color scheme. But the real attention grabbers are the custom flames, mock trim, and artwork that was laid down by Isaac Hernandez of Isaac’s Custom Graphics in Ocoee, Florida, using BASF R-M Carizzma paints throughout. The intertwined cobalt and tangerine flames are pinstriped with lavender and lime green, and really make the car “pop” no matter what the setting.

While the interior is mostly an all business affair, with the roll cage and race attributes like Simpson safety equipment taking center stage, there are still a host of creature comforts common to more sedate street rods. Those include power windows, air conditioning, a 1,500 watt Alpine stereo and DVD system by Soundcrafters in Daytona Beach, full complement of Auto Meter gauges, blue baby ostrich seats and interior accents by Howard Krusey of Complete Auto Upholstery in Altamonte Springs, and a headliner by Jimmy at The Stitcher.

The car was unveiled at the 2007 SEMA show in Las Vegas, where it won a Designer Award from Hot Wheels for Best Attitude. Since then it has done very well at many other shows, both national and local, always with great crowd response. Paul enjoys all the comments the car gets, and he works hard to keep it looking top notch. While all the chrome work was done by Spacecoast Plating in Melbourne, Florida, it was Paul himself that did all of the hand polishing throughout the entire car. The daunting task of maintaining it also falls upon Paul, but he told us that even though all of his friends like to tease him about how much he loves to polish, to him it is just therapy.

Now that the car is completed, Paul’s plans are just to hang out and enjoy it with all of the friends and family who spent endless nights on what at times seemed like a never ending project, helping him bring it all together. Of course, there’s always room for more therapeutic polishing! CN