1963 TBIRD Custom Tracking down History

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    Rik Hoving

    I’m posting this for Marke Kemp

    A rodder friend over here in Australia has put me onto this site for some help.

    As I have purchased this custom 1963 T-Bird and now trying to track down who it was built by in the late 60’s.

    It then had at least two new owners in a 2 year period then sold to Glen Jenning who is a big car collector here in Australia, then to me. The car is unrestored and all steel modifications so well done that 50 years on still very good same Egyptian themed interior with lights and gizmos. In an old craigs list ad from 2007 the car was called the scorpion in gold letters above back window

    I hate to give this car up but here goes. This is a piece of American Automotive history. It is a 1963 George Barris Ford Thunderbird comissioned by Los Angeles furniture store owner Eddie Leon. After the original owner passed away it sat for several years

    The car is a rust free California car with 98,000 original miles. It was labor of love for Mr. Leon through the end of the 1960’s after seeing Ford’s Caravan of Cars in 1965. The car was completed in the early 1970’s with the installation of a 1963 427 Ford Top Oiler or Center Oiler engine. In 1975 a set of ported and polished 1966 (C5AE) Medium Rise heads (2.19 intake / 1.73 exhaust) were added. I estimate the horsepower to be very near 450 which isn’t bad for a low (9.5:1) cruiser.

    It has a trophy in boot (trunk) best custom 1968, so it must have been created pre 1968. The trophy was best Custom Car 1968 San Mateo. Indicating it was an Southern California owner. The owner leo lived and ended up in vacaville in 2005

    I had found an old Craigslist ad from 2o07 saying it was a Barris built car for Eddie Leon from the Leon furniture shops across the states (his name all over car including badge on bonnet and on dash also says build one of one she is called the scorpion).

    The work that has gone into this has to be a well known or at least very skilled builder. Everything is done in steel, and no cracks or signs of shrinkage or stress fractures. It now is missing the chrome bars grille that can be seen in the smaller photos, but otherwise it is very much the same as it was when built, all of the lights and voice control is still working on the dash, hard to believe after all these years.

    Anybody knows any history of this wild T-Bird Custom?














    If you have more info on the history of this car, stories, or perhaps some old photos, please add them here to this post, hopefully we can shed some more light on the history of this Bird.



    Enjoy the beauty of Customizing

    marke kemp

    hi thanks for posting , the car is not for sale as I have just brought it after chasing the owner for past 8 years iam after any information on who build this car thanks in advance

    marke kemp

    Big update last night ,we found a pile of documents in the boot, so cooool, and through that got info of owner Eddie leon and address, so found a phone number at long beach, rang vey late last night, and spoke to chip leon ,eddies son he is 71 years of age, and eddies wife Norma who’s name is also on the dash is still alive and in her 90s, he was amazed that the car is in Australia and I tracked him down, now the car was brought late 60s, engine built mid 70s, and then sent to kolor me customs in late 70s and customized by Vini bergeman, he is was a well known car customizer and in the record books for building the world’s biggest limo ,iam so pleased to get some light on her history

    Rik Hoving

    That is great news Marke, I hope you will be able to find some old photos of it as well.

    Enjoy the beauty of Customizing

    Robert Jewell

    This is a Wild Bird. I absolutely love it. Not the biggest fan of the dash. But hey it wasn’t built for me lol. So awesome to know it’s still around after all these years.

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