LANA OíNeill isnít your stock-standard 16-year-old gal.
Nup, sheís usually found in the shed with her dad Bill, covered in grinding dust and weld splatters. Sheís been wielding the tools on her own sweet í27 T roadster, a build that she started when she was just 12!
As a kid I had a miniature 1932 go-kart that was purple with flames, which I sold to Daniel and Sandra Horne (Iron Maiden SM, Oct í16) for their daughter. With that money, Dad found me a steel 1927 T-model roadster body at the 2012 Croydon swap meet.
Weíve chopped the body eight inches and sat it on a Model A chassis thatís been stepped up 100mm to lower the car. Iím going to use a pair of í32 rails as covers on the outer lower edge of the chassis to make it look more full in the body.
At the back weíve added a Toyota HiLux diff mounted by a triangulated four-bar and coil-over shocks. Iím not set on the rims and tyres, as I also like the traditional late-1940s-built T roadsters that are black with steel 15- or 16-inch wheels.
Itís a 2.0L four-cylinder Toyota 18R-GU twin-cam factory race engine out of an early-70s Toyota Celica. Behind is a Toyota five-speed íbox. It will be cheap to run and also fast, but most importantly I can drive it while Iím on my Ps.
Dad and I work on it together but he does most of it while I learn along the way. Iíve done a welding course, and I do a lot of the grinding. I plan to paint it myself as Dadís a spray painter by trade and Iíve watched him work his magic my whole life.
The plan is to have it finished in the next two years to coincide with my licence.
Dad has been in The Spades hot rod club since he was 16 and they had their 50th anniversary last year. A few of my young rodder mates and I have formed our own club called Voodoo Kings to keep the tradition going.
They think Iím crazy but theyíre proud of me and reckon itís cool that as a teenage girl Iím building a car with my dad. Iíve also formed the Lanaís Hot Rod Gang rockabilly band with my brother, uncle and a family friend. The money from the gigs goes back into my project.
Dad, as he is such a great role model. He helps me achieve my goals and he wants the best for me. If it wasnít for him, I wouldnít be building this car. I love creating those memories together.
Dad, Bob Maloney, Early Hot Rod Parts, Hell Bent Hot Rods and all my friends and family who are helping me throughout the build. s