Custom Model T, Blastolene, Fuel Curve

Custom Model T Truck – Blasting Down the Boulevard

If you are going to build a Custom Model T Truck, you might find inspiration here. Only this Custom Model T Truck doesn’t have much Model T left. It’s a piece of art – an expression of a special man.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Michael Leeds has been doing this a long time. If his workshop was any indication, this is a guy with a clear and deliberate passion for what he does. Michael Leeds is more than just a proper gearhead, though, and it’s pretty clear straightaway the guy is an artist first and foremost.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Making up half of the Blastolene Brothers, you’re likely already familiar with Leeds’ work. Today we’d be taking out one of his less-known and more recent creations. It’s been eight years of tinkering for Leeds, but his latest build has just recently been deemed road-ready by the State of California.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Thus, he’s only just begun to enjoy the thing in the wild. With the car based in Santa Cruz we took what California considers to be a 1924 Model T Ford out for a drive on West Cliff Avenue. As expected, every single person who passed by had some sort of reaction to his creation.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel CurveCustom Model T, Blastolene, Fuel Curve

Just going for a casual cruise, the car looks out of place everywhere you take it. Leeds says this is his favorite thing about it, just that it’s “so not normal.” The retro-futuristic feel of the car as it breathes fuel and spits out power around town is so intense; you can’t help but experience the thing as it rolls by you.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve


It’s powered by a small block Chevy making a conservative 350 horsepower. In a car this light and this cool, power output doesn’t really matter anyway. What matters more is how that tunnel ram intake with two Demon carburetors looks sitting atop the V8.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

What matters is the presence of the car as it hammers by with the exhaust forced out of hand-made headers. What matters is how it feels when power is sent through the Camaro rear axle and out to massive ’1936 Ford wire wheels which measure 16×15 inches out back.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Inside the car all you have for support is a homemade foam pad and a bit of rubber covered up by quilts and scraps of antique Persian rugs. It’s not for everyone, but no one can accuse Michael of not being creative and building this car exactly as he wanted to.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Every square inch of the thing is deeply personal in some way; he’s owned the steering wheel since he was 17 years old, for example. The whole car just started out as metal tube and the project was completed with his two twin boys.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

Leeds sees the car as fine folk art more than a vehicle. The car and the process is his connection to the material world where he’s just “a person” with tools in his hands. He says he’s “always been captivated by things on wheels that go,” and that building a car is a sort of “prosthesis.” The brake lines are an extension of his nervous system; when something is off with the car he can feel it.

Custom Model T Truck, Fuel Curve

With his mechanical prosthesis complete, we’re sure Michael will be turning heads with the build for thousands of miles to come.

Custom Model T Truck Photo Extra!

Trevor Ryan is a track day photographer from Northern California. He has experience in many different areas of photography but always comes back to automotive work in the end. To him, nothing is more rewarding than creating an amazing image of a car. Having purchased a ’66 Mustang almost six years ago, he had no choice but to end up immersed in car culture sooner or later. He also owns a ’99 Miata that he takes to the track. He has love for every part of car culture and besides track days often makes it to drift events, Cars and Coffee, tuner shows, and anything else he can find.

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