From the day I laid eyes on Frank Gray's 1951 Willys pickup I was in love. I have always had a soft spot for anything Willys and these trucks are just beyond cool. Frank grew up around a Willys pickup on the farm and had very fond memories of them. Frank knew he wanted to have one in his fleet to drive around and enjoy. What he forgot was that 1950s trucks were more like tractors than trucks and the top speed of 40 mph was just not for him let alone the lack of steering, braking or any creature comforts. Frank contacted Lamb Fab to take this classic American pickup into modern times without loosing the character and appeal it was born with. A 1986 Jeep Wagoneer was selected to donate its chassis, suspension and axles. This gained modern power steering, power disc brakes, a mid way boxed frame and much much more regidity than the origional tiny Willys frame. The frame was lengthened to match the wheelbase, custom fabricated body mounts were built and the classic looks met a much more useable platform. Next was the powertrain. No flat head 4 cylinder for Frank, a 2005 Vortec 5.3 and 4l60e automatic transmission were sourced from a 2005 Cheverolet Silverado along with the transfer case. This fuel injected power plant pushes this truck along with authority yet runs and functions like a brand new pickup with all the reliability and throttle response one could ask for. Many custom body mods were made to make a more stream line looking truck without taking away from the feel of the Willys. It will take a very well trained Willys enthusiast to point them out but they completely "fix" the stance of the truck. Inside Mercedes benz carpet and bomber jacket leather were used on a modified bench seat to create the most comfort possible in such a tiny cab. The original gauges were restored and converted to run modern electronic internals. An all electronic climate control system was installed to allow frank to have heat, defrost, A/C and everything in between. From the very beginning this truck was built to be driven, and driven it is. Frank frequently takes this pickup all over the valley and even takes it on joy ride road trips. Watch for this one in JP Magazine soon!!!
1974 Plymouth Baracuda
This is Keith Pierson's 1965 M151 aka Mutt (that's really what they were called) Lamb Fab performed a complete engine/engine compartment restoration on this one. The engine was in good condition mechanically but barely ran and cosmetically it had seen better days. All of the fording lines and ventilation systems were returned to their stock positions and working order. This cool little piece of history roams around mesa and can be seen at most of the local military shows!
1953 Ford F-100
This is Eric Button's 66 Cadillac Sedan Deville. It received a custom fabricated air ride suspension with fast valves. It sits on 22in wheels and is currently in the booth for a full custom paint job!
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1966 Cadillac Sedan Deville
This is Mark and Courtney Larsen's 53 ford f-100. Courtney's dream was to drive an old f-100 farm truck. When Mark found her this truck its cost clipper straight 6 and 2 speed transmission had a max speed of 50mph. It had non power drum brakes and no power steering. It handled like a farm implement and rode like one too! Courtney could not drive it and it was not safe in todays traffic. With their need for comfort, safety, reliability and drive ability I set out to create their perfect farm truck while maintaining its factory looks they had fallen in love with. I installed a 2005 vortec 5.3 computer controlled drive by wire engine low in the chassis backed by a 4l60e transmission. The front solid axle was traded for a custom upper and lower control arm suspension with power rack and pinion steering and a sway bar. It uses mustang geometry and large camaro disc brakes. The frame was boxed for strength and to improve rigidity. A modern power brake master cylinder and booster were hidden under the truck in a custom bracket.The rear suspension was modified for better ride quality. The entire truck was converted to 12 volt and a vintage air system keeps the inside comfortable in all climates. An aluminum dash and vintage series Autometer gauges keep tabs on the vitals without sticking out like a sore thumb. A tilt steering column and a floor shifter for the automatic along with a complete re location of the pedals make things much more comfortable. Key less entry, power door locks and an alarm were installed for more convenience. The front axle center was moved forward to center the tire in the wheel well and the whole truck was lowered just enough. Basically this pickup is the best of both worlds. Modern reliability, handling, performance and comfort wrapped in classic style. This truck truly has it all.
Many of the projects we do here at Lamb Fab are inspired by memories, Jason Bankey's 1981 Cutlass is a perfect example. Jason had a Cutlass years ago and had many fond memories of it. One thing he always wanted to do with his first Cutlass was a v8 swap. This time around Lamb Fab was able to make it a reality. Out went the old tired v6 and in went a good used 350 and th350. Before the power plant went in a full engine compartment refresh was completed. The engine and transmission were also disassembled, completely cleaned and re sealed before being put together and stuffed under the hood. Many new parts such as ceramic coated headers, an Edelbrock carb, hei distributor etc were installed to wake up this small block. While the Cutlass was hanging around the shop a full custom exhaust was installed and the air conditioning system was hooked up and repaired. Now Jason can cruise in comfort while enjoying the v8 rumble. This little car is truely a blast to drive, and I hope Jason enjoys every min of this blast from the past.
1951 Willys Pickup
This is Don Pierson's 1995 VW Cabrio. Don picked this car up for a fun open top economical cruiser. It was a bit tired looking and had a few mechanical issues but now its freshened up and turning heads. A new set of black/polished 17in wheels and smoked taill lights top it off and make it stand out in the water cooled crowd.
This is Mike Wixom's 1950 CJ-V35/U. When Mike obtained this jeep he had no idea it was something special. He, as well as the previous owner thought it was just another cj2a like it was titled. After some research it was found that this jeep is in fact special and very rare. This jeep was one of 1000 built in 1950 for the United States Marine Corps. It was designed to be able to run under water and carry vital communication equipment. It is now one of under 60 registered survivors (running or not). In the form that Mike obtained the V35 it looked like just an old tow behind jeep. After a 100% frame off end to end restoration it once again wears its original colors, just like it did when it came out of the Willys Overland Motors in 1950! With Mikes research and dedication to the project and the work here at Lamb Fab this jeep is nothing short of amazing. It was unveiled at the town of Gilbert Veterans day celebration 2010. To preserve a small piece of American history for future generations, and to see the reactions of the Veterans as they remembered their time on canvas seats just like the V35's made it all worth while! Im sure Mike would have to agree! Update!!! Check out the full feature on this Jeep in JP Magazine!!!!!!
This is Mike Wixom's CJ7. Lamb fab has done a few odds and ends on it including modifying a set of crusher corners and installing rock sliders. This jeep literally rocks.
1969 Chevy Camaro
Coyote Swapped Ford Bronco
This is Todd Lamb's 1987 Jeep Wrangler. It houses a vortec 350,700r4 transmission, atlas ll 3.8 transfer case and curry 9in front and rear axles with Detroit lockers. It has a set of Trail Ready hd bead lock wheels and 37in bfg Km2 tires. Just recently we stripped the whole thing down and had it painted in its new orange color. Look for this one on your local trails, trust me you cant miss it!
This is Todd Lamb's 1969 Camaro. This was built from the ground up by Lamb Fab. The goal for this project was not only for it to look good for future shows but also for it to perform with the best of todays sports cars while being comfortable enough to drive out to dinner or go on a road trip. This is no trailer queen! First thing was to stiffen the chassis enough for big power and corner carving. Everyone knows that first gen camaros are some what torsionally weak. Couple this with 40 years of use, big power and traction and it spells disaster. Because of the in the weeds ride height that was desired normal sub frame connectors would not do(they also look terrible hanging down). Custom fabricated sub frame rails were built that make this a full frame car and completely tie the entire car together. They weld into the rear frame rails, pass half way through the floor and then come back down to meet the sub frame. They also tie into a rear cross member that provides a drive shaft safety hoop and a seriously strong platform for the rear triangulated fully adjustable four link suspension. The rear axle is a narrowed 12 bolt with 4:10 gears and a Detroit locker. Air ride technologies shock waves provide adjust ability and dampening control. Up front Air ride technologies upper and lower control arms and drop spindles were used to achieve the desired stance and to improve handling in the corners. Another set of Shock waves were called upon for adjust ability and dampening. The rear wheel wells were "mini tubbed" allowing the 12 in wide rear wheels. Speaking of the wheels. These are a one off billet set custom cut to my specs by Intro wheel. Fronts are 18x8 and rears are 20X12. Power to make this a serious contender is a custom built 4 bolt 454 connected to a t56 6 speed manual sourced from a Dodge viper and a center force racing clutch. The big blocks massive camshaft can be herd through the in house custom built nascar oval exhaust. To slow things down 15in cross drilled and slotted rotors were used up front with 12in matching rotors out back along with CPP calipers and billet hubs. Todd wanted to keep the camaros classic look inside and outside. Outside got a few very discrete body mods and super sport trim. Inside got factory 69 camaro deluxe trim, a custom in house built dash panel with auto meter gauges and a Billet steering wheel that matches the wheels. If the hugger orange paint doesn't grab your attention the distinct big block rumble will force you to take notice as this one passes by!
1987 Jeep Wrangler
This is Dawn Farci's numbers matching b5 blue 1974 Baracuda. Dawn has owned this car since high school and wanted to restore it to its origional condition. Everything on this car is rebuilt, referbished and or replaced. The last picture is its final day at the shop, loaded up and headed back to Dawn's garage. It truely is a thing of beauty and will continue to turn heads for many years to come!