From Kustomrama
Jump to: navigation, search
Kenneth Kamp's Otter is a fiberglass bodies two-seater built by Kenneth Kamp of Norwood, Ohio. 9 Otters were built, the first one was completed in 1953.
The 1954 Edwards America Convertible, envisioned by Sterling Edwards, melded European design with American muscle. Built on a Kaiser-Frazer Henry J chassis with an Oldsmobile "Rocket" V-8 engine, it was a rare blend of fiberglass coachwork and robust performance. Norman Timbs helped design the car for Sterling.
The 1955 Debonnaire Convertible, designed by Phillip Egan and built by Replac Corporation, showcased a unique fiberglass body on a 114-inch wheelbase Ford chassis. Debuted in Motor Trend July 1955, it blended sports car allure with American boulevard cruiser style. Production ended abruptly after just six units due to a factory fire in 1956.
The first ads for Diablo Speed Shop's fiberglass T-Buckets appeared in Hot Rod Magazine August 1957. The price was $149.50. Photo courtesy of Hot Rod Magazine.
Ed Roth's Outlaw was Ed's first experience with fiberglass. The build was started in 1957, and it made it's debut two years later as the Excaliber at the 1959 Disneyland Car Club Day and Autocade.
Bob Knessel's Sports Custom of Bell, California. Featuring a Fiberglass body, Bob and his dad spent three years constructing the car. According to an appearance in Fawcett Book 413 How to Build and Race Hot Rods, Ed Roth was involved in the build, and rumors has it that he gave it a Metallic pink paint job once the bodywork was done.
Jim Logue's 1954 Ford convertible of Long Beach, California. Completed in 1958, Jim's Ford featured hydraulic lifts from aircraft surplus parts to alter the ground clearance. Jim's Ford is the first known custom car to be fitted with hydraulic lifts on all four corners, and it might be the very first custom to ever to incorporate this groundbreaking modification. Jim's Ford is also known as "The Fabulous X54," and he used cardboard and fiberglass over the metal when he restyled the car.
Buzz Pitzen's 1923 Ford fiberglass-bodied Model T roadster of Redondo Beach, California. Buzz bought the body from Diablo Speed Shop in Walnut Creek, California, and it is believed to be the first fiberglass T Bucket ever made. Known as the Glass Image, the build was completed in 1960, making it the worlds first known Fiberglass T-bucket hot rod.
In 1964 a picture of the Glass Image was used to promote Fiberglass "T" Roadster Bodies manufactured and sold through a company called Roadster Engineering. Scan courtesy of T Bucket Plans.
Milt Mallory's Atlas Swallow of Castro Valley, California. The Atlas Swallow is a fiberglass sports car that emerged from a collaboration between renowned automotive innovators Bill Burke and Mickey Thompson in the early 1950s. Milt discovered the car in a wrecking yard in Hayward around 1963-1964. He had the car most of his senior year at Hayward High, and he hot-rodded it by installing a 1956 DeSoto Hemi that he sourced from a friend's mother.
Steve Scott's Uncertain-T of Reseda, California. Built by Steve in a small family garage, the build was started in 1960 and completed in 1965. He was 17 years when he started the build. The inspiration came from a cartoon that a friend had made in class. The very distinct body was made out of fiberglass. Steve mocked up the chassis before he began constructing the body. This had to be done in order to decide all the measurements, angles of the body, and so on. He used a conduit bender to shape electrical conduit and brazed the pieces together to form a skeleton for the plug. An actual Model T cowl was used as a starting point for the plug. Steve spread polyester resin over fiberglass cloth and matte barehanded, as he didn't like the lack of sensitivity from using gloves. Thin throw-away gloves were useless, as they kept sticking to the resin and pulling off. When he was done for the day, a lot of paper towels and a pan of acetone were waiting. He knew this wasn't good, but he didn't plan to do it as a living, so it didn't matter to him.[1]

Fiberglass Bodied Cars

Ed Roth's Outlaw
Steve Scott's Uncertain-T
Buzz Pitzen's 1923 Ford Model T Roadster - The Glass Image
Kenneth Kamp's Otter
Bob Knessel's Sports Custom
Milt Mallory's Atlas Swallow
1954 Edwards America Convertible
1955 Debonnaire Convertible



Did you enjoy this article?

Kustomrama is an encyclopedia dedicated to preserve, share and protect traditional hot rod and custom car history from all over the world.

Can you help us make this article better?

Please get in touch with us at if you have additional information or photos to share about Fiberglass.

This article was made possible by:

SunTec Auto Glass - Auto Glass Services on Vintage and Classic Cars
Finding a replacement windshield, back or side glass can be a difficult task when restoring your vintage or custom classic car. It doesn't have to be though now with auto glass specialist companies like They can source OEM or OEM-equivalent glass for older makes/models; which will ensure a proper fit every time. Check them out for more details!

Do you want to see your company here? Click here for more info about how you can advertise your business on Kustomrama.

Personal tools
Help us