We’ve all heard the phrase, ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day.’ And neither are Hot Rods and Custom cars. In 1981 Art Laws owner of Timberline Dodge formerly in Portland Oregon was in southern California on a car buying trip, when he came across a 1965 Dodge A-100 pick-up. The truck had been used as a delivery truck. It was in pretty rough shape, but it was an original V-8 automatic, very rare and very hard to find. The majority of these trucks were 6 cylinder, 3-speeds. Art had been looking for an A-100 like this to use for his own dealership, since it had the right power train, Art bought the truck and shipped it back to Portland.
Once it had arrived at his shop, he had his mechanics go over the truck and it was determined that the engine and transmission needed to be rebuilt. Work commenced immediately and the engine and trans were out of the truck the next day. The truck was rolled over to the body shop with the idea that when they had the spare time, they would work on the body and paint work it needed.
Over the years the truck sat in the body shop without much work being done to it. In other words, it was put on the back burner so to speak. In 1993 the motor was finally finished and it sat on an engine stand in the showroom on display for years.
When Art retired in 2009, the truck still sat in his warehouse awaiting completion. In December 2013, Ed McLarty, a friend of Arts was asked if he wanted to help Art finish the restoration. Ed agreed and he worked on it until its final completion. That is, if projects are ever really complete.
The truck wasn’t an easy project because of its rarity with so few being built and so few remaining most companies don’t make after-market parts for this vehicle. It’s also very hard to find good used parts. What made it even harder was that a lot of the parts to the truck were missing by the time Ed started working on it.
Ed says that the truck couldn’t have been completed without the help of the following: Wild Cat Auto Wrecking, Vicious Brand Auto Art, Russ’z Auto Upholstery and Restorations, Mt. Hood Glass, Industrial Finishes and Terry Sorvik.
Now that it is finished Art and Ed are looking forward to displaying it at the Portland Roadster Show and a couple Good Guys event this summer, along with Beaches Cruise-In on Wednesday evenings at PIR in Portland.