The Kopper Kart clone
Vic Collins used to visit John Pazsik's shop when he was just a boy, and developed a love of custom cars from his dad, building 1/24 scale models, and going to car shows. When he got his drivers license, he went through a series of old cars and trucks. He eventually settled into a shoebox Ford, that he had another Jersey customizer, Bob Nitti (co-owner of the Barris Aztec) do some body modifications on. When BOb retired, he came to my shop for more custom work. I installed Studebacker fins on the Ford, and later shopped the top. VIc also found the George Wallace 61 Dodge I now own, another Pazsik built custom.
Vic got the bug to build a replica of his favorite custom truck, the Kopper Kart, and eventually bought a 55 GMC to do so. He and his brother did some work on it, but eventually came to me, as they did not have the equipment, time or place to do the job right. The project struggled along for a couple years, stalling quite a bit, until I saw on the HAMB ( an internet traditional rod and custom forum) that someone else was building a clone of the Kart as well.
This other builder, John Maurice, had been collecting parts, and chopping and sectioning the truck, until he had to move to New York CIty, where building cars isn't very easy. Vic bought out his project, and together with ours, was the impetus to "git'er done!" We made a pact to complete the truck in 16 months and debut it at the Detroit Autorama, exactly 50 years from then the real truck made it's debut in California.