Howard Gribble was born in Wilmington, North Carolina. When he was 8 years old his family moved to the South Bay area of Los Angeles, to the town of Torrance. While in junior hight school, Howard started to notice customized cars in the area featuring scallop paint jobs, pinstriping and flames. Howard started drawing pictures of the cars he saw cruising the streets. By the time he was in high school, custom cars dominated his interests, and he started collecting car magazines.
At age 15 he got his first car, a 1950 Ford sedan. Howard was going for the George Barris style, and began restyling the car by shaving the door handles and removing the emblems. Due to a limited budget, the project never really took off. Early in 1965, Howard bought a 1961 Ford Starliner from a used car lot on Hawthorne Blvd. in Torrance. He traded it in for a 1957 Chevrolet 2 door sedan. This Starliner was very clean, white with red interior, and equipped with the "Police Interceptor" factory option. This package consisted of three two barrel carburetors on a 390 cubic inch V8, along with heavy duty extras like beefed up three speed transmission and suspension pieces. After installing a pair of 10 inch wide slicks, enjoying his factory muscle car for what it was worth, Howard ended up with a blown head gasket, crunched transmission and a bad rear end. He then decided that he wanted to turn the Starliner into a boulevard cruiser instead, and he had Carl Darling help him customize the car. Unfortunately, the car was tragically wrecked only a short time after it made its first public appearance.
Howard Gribble's Cars
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