Mr. M's Custom Chrome Center

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Mike's personal driver, a 1962 Impala named the Mint Julip parked outside Mr. M's Custom Chrome Center. Photo courtesy of Mike Smith, provided by Howard Gribble.[1]
Red Pierce's 1957 Oldsmobile advertised for sale outside Mr. M's. Photo provided by Howard Gribble.
A Joe Andersen painted 1956 Chevrolet Bel Air parked outside Mike's Crenshaw and Rosecrans shop. Photo courtesy of Mike Smith, provided by Howard Gribble.
Mr. M's Custom Chrome Center of Lawndale, California. This card comes from the collection of Howard Gribble. "Guess I was driving past Mr. M's for about a year before I went in. That was because I needed chrome rims for my new 1967 Impala." Howard believes Mike put him in touch with Red to install the hydraulic lifts too. "And later, he got Steve Feinberg involved in doing a professional show sign for me. The wheels took a long time to be delivered, and they weren't on the car until Red was already working on the lifts. I remember going by the shop to take the wheels and tires to have the rubber mounted on the new chrome wheels. Red's dad was the only one there, and he wouldn't let me take them because he didn't know me." According to Howard, Mike had most of the custom accessories available at the time. "In a roundabout way, he introduced me to the guy who supplied 5 Buick Skylark wheels that eventually made up the 4 I needed for my Rivie. And he invited me to show my Impala in San Diego along with three other cars that Anderson painted, including the Lemon Drop Rivie that he owned by then. For whatever the reason, Mr. M's shop was gone by the very early 1970s." Photo from The Kustomrama Business Card Collection.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s Pete Limpert's 1936 Ford tudor sedan was shown at various Southern California car shows with a sponsorship by Mr. M's Custom Chrome Center. Photo by Pete Limpert, provided by Howard Gribble.

Mr. M's Custom Chrome Center was a custom accessories and wheel shop run and operated by Mike "Mr. M" Smith. Mike opened up the shop in 1964. It was located at Crenshaw and Rosecrans in Gardena, California, and most of the cruisers in the South Bay area bought their stuff from Mike. Later Mike would relocate his shop to 16209 Hawthorne Blvd. in Lawndale, California.[2]


  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named kid
  2. Howard Gribble


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