What makes a Rat Rod a Rat Rod?

Posted by at 21 June 2014, at 11 : 35 AM

What makes a Rat Rod a Rat Rod?

I’ve read up on “How to build a Rat Rod” and asked myself if any of them have any benefit over others. The reality is that many beginners, as well as professionals, build these cars and the only law should be how cool can you make it.

Be sure that you don’t misrepresent them with Hot Rods, which are normally classic hot rods that are high polished and contain tons of chrome. And don’t confuse them with Muscle Cars like Mustangs, Chevelles, etc.

Rat Rods are old, rusty looking or most of the time primered pieces of art. They can be very basic, almost like what you would consider a jalopy. Most owners build their Rat Rods themselves as they are very easy vehicles to build.

No one can tell you how to build it, but let us give you some ideas. You can turn almost any vehicle into a Rat Rod. Just do it with some class and knowledge of how these vehicles should look. Don’t go out into your garage and spray satin silver paint on your Mercedes if you understand what I mean. Some of the more popular vehicles are 20s, through 50’s vehicles. Fords and Chevys are more popular. Don’t be afraid to go outside the box. Make a statement and build a Hudson or a Metropolitan.

Keep in mind that many of these cars do not utilize the same engine. Most Rat Rodders appreciate the look of the older style motors (like flathead Fords). But does it really matter what it is powered by? The louder – the better. Be heard. Don’t look like everyone else. You want to stick out in a crowd and really show people that you have arrived. Really think about what you are doing. No rust bucket is too ugly when building your car.

Use your creativity as well. Go through your garage and look for interesting accessories to add to your car. Why not have a beer tap as your shifter handle? How about that old bench seat out of your grandmas old Caddy. If it doesn’t fit, be creative, make it fit. Customize it!

Get the ride height set correctly as well. The lower – the better. Chopped roofs are traditional. Many people can’t chop a roof themselves, but lowering the car is beginner friendly. Lots of ideas can be had by simply looking at photos, going to shows, or looking through magazines.

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