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Ed Jacques 1942 Ford Exquisite Custom Car Design


Exquisite Custom Car Design


The customs created by the Valley Custom Shop are always subtile, no matter how dramatic the body changes are. They are always styled with an overall concept in mind. Not a car with a front that doesn’t fit the rear of the car. Or one with modifications done just for the sake of making it different from the rest.


SlideEdJacques-41FordWhen I came across this wonderful rare color photo of Ed Jacques 1942 Ford coupe I knew I had to write a nice story about this fantastic Custom Car.

Ed Jacques 1942 Ford is no exception to this. The car is very well designed and subtile changes were made thru-out the body to ensure a wonderful overall body design. Ed’s Ford is a 1942 Ford, most likely built in late 1941 at the Ford factory it uses a 1941 Ford front end with 1942 Ford main body.

The car has been featured in magazines, and I have written a bit about it on the HAMB in my Valley Custom Shop Spotlight post. But the more I look at this car, the more respect I get for the work and especially the design abilities of the Neil Emory and Clayton Jensen of the the Valley Custom Shop. When I spoke with Jensen’s family at the 2011 GNRS, I asked them if the family knew that their father was part of something really special. And they all said YES we knew that the cars created by the Valley Custom Shop where in a different league than the cars from any other shop. The way Neil and Clayton where able to work together, step back to check the designs and create masterpiece after masterpiece was almost magic.

In an magazine article for a Dutch magazine I once wrote that the Valley Custom Shop created Custom Cars that where more like Factory styled Customs. Like cars, that if it was up to the designers it would be like that, how they would have rolled of out the factory.

Ed Jacques 1942 Ford is no exception to this. The car is very well designed and subtile changes where made thru-out the body to ensure a wonderful overall body design. Ed’s Ford is a 1942 Ford, most likely built in late 1941 at the Ford factory it uses a 1941 Ford front end with 1942 Ford main body.

Here a similar solid rod grille as on Ed’s Ford is built for Ray Charbonneau’s 1953 Studebaker.This view shows the back side of the grille and how the rods are welded to the shaped surround.

The first thing you notice on this car is how low it sits and that the car is not chopped. And the first is rather unique for a Valley Custom Shop Custom. Usually their cars have much more ground clearance than this Ford. But Ed insisted on it being low, and the Shop made sure it was lowered the right way, with a kicked up frame in the rear with the inner wheel wells raised and dropped axle in the front. The next thing that jumps out to you is the grille. A wonderful hand made piece created out of 5/8″ solid bar stock. The Valley Custom Shop has created similar styled grilles for the Dick Flint roadster and for the Ray Charbonneau’s 1953 Studebaker.

This rod was shaped to fit the stock grille opening, and hand bend over a wooden die. Rods where welded in between. The welds were filed to shape and everything was hand sanded until it was completely smooth, then the grille was send out to be plated. I could not find a photo of the work done on the grille used in Ed’s Ford, but below is similar work done onRay’s 1953 Studebaker custom grille.

The overall appearance of Ed’s 1942 Ford is elegant,like a good designed Custom Car should be.

To make the car look even lower than it already was the Neil and Clayton lowered the front and rear gravel shields and bumper mounts, and installed 1946 Ford units.

To make sure the car could still steer the front wheel openings where opened up and finished like it came from the factory that way. The headlights where frenched in for an ultra smooth look, and the two pieces of the hood where welded together and a wonderful sharp peak was created in its center.

An article in the June 1953 issue of Popular Science showsNeil and Clayton finishing the paint work on Ed’s Ford.


At the back the top trunk corners where rounded and a set of 1947 Ford taillights where lowered and molded into the body with home made longer than stock mounting pods. They sit now slightly above the rear bumper and add a bit more visual lowering to the back. A set of long 1941 Ford fender skirts was installed and only a very small amount of white wall can be seen dropping underneath from it.

All four fenders where welded to the body, and finished of with a wonderful radius blend from fender to body.
The door handles where shaved and pushbuttons for the solenoid openers where installed inside the chrome side trim. And the top door corners where rounded with the same radius that was used for the trunk. Details like this make this car stand out from the rest.


The stance of the car is perfect, low overall, but slightly more in the back for the instant but subtile speed boat look. And once all the body work was done Valley Custom Shop painted the car in an ultimate dark green metallic lacquer. The interior in dark green with white piping and white rolled panels was done by Floyd Tipton, who handled a lot of the Valley Custom Shop interiors. The hubcaps are aftermarket pieces that are subtile and fit the rest of the car perfectly.

The engine bay was very well detailed, especially for 1953.Everything that could be unbolted was either painted glossy, or chrome plated.


The end result was a magnificent custom car that was mild and still wild… but with an overall elegant understated appearance. The car was featured on a double page spread in the Hop Up May 1953 issue as well as a full page in the Best Hot Rod book from Fawcett books in 1953. If the car survived, and is still around today is something I don’t know. I hope it is… but I have not been able to find any information about what has happened tho this classic Custom Car.








Rik Hoving

Rik is the CCC editor in chief. As a custom car historian he is researching custom car history for many years. In 2004 he started the Custom Car Photo Archive that has become a place of joy for many custom car enthousiasts. Here at CCC Rik will bring you inspiring articles on the history of custom cars and builders. Like a true photo detective he will show us what's going on in all those amazing photos. He will write stories about everything you want to know in the realm of customizing. In daily life Rik is a Graphic Designer. He is married to the CCC webmaster and the father of a 10 year old son (they are both very happy with his excellent cooking skills)

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