Central West Car Club | Ron Tanswell revives 1956 Ford Customline

NEW LIFE: Ron Tanswell's 1956 Ford Customline was originally going to be a parts-car for another Customline project but it was in such great condition, he restored it instead. Photo: Jeff McClurg
NEW LIFE: Ron Tanswell's 1956 Ford Customline was originally going to be a parts-car for another Customline project but it was in such great condition, he restored it instead. Photo: Jeff McClurg

Long before the introduction of the now defunct Ford Falcon in Australia, the big Ford on Australian roads was the Customline.

Ron Tanswell from the Central West Car Club in Parkes remembers them well, having owned a few as his daily drivers back in the 60s and he's just finished restoring this beauty.

It's a 1956 Ford Customline four-door sedan that was originally going to be a parts-car for another Customline project.

But it was too good for that so it got a revival all of its own.

"I bought it in 2014 as an unfinished project," Ron said.

"There was a chassis with a body and everything else was pulled apart so it took two trailers and a ute-load to bring it home, but it was all there."

Fortunately for Ron, a lot of the hard work was already done.

The body had been repaired, the seats and interior had been re-trimmed and the engine was reconditioned.

Ron pieced together the mechanicals and the driveline himself, and prepared the body for paint.

He then decided he was sick of waiting on somebody else to paint the Customline so he took that on himself too.

The car has only been completed and registered in the last few weeks and it looks like Ron's done a fantastic job.

"It's got the original matching numbers 272 Y-block V8 engine and a 3 speed manual transmission," Ron said.

"The colour is the original Buckskin Tan and white with a fresh cream leatherette interior."

For Ron the Customline brings back fond memories.

"It's not like driving an old car because this is what we regularly drove," he said.

Ron told me he's always been a Ford fan since his youth and in particular favours the Customline.

"I bought a Ford Deluxe V8 when I was just 14," he laughed.

"But my parents wouldn't let me keep it!"

This certainly won't be the last we see of Ron and his Customline.

He plans to drive it regularly when he gets the opportunity.

When the Parkes Elvis Festival kicks off again in 2022 he'll be putting it in the parade; and he's already started work on his other Customline so look out for it in the future too.

For more about the CWCC, visit http://www.centralwestcarclub.com/ or find them on Facebook.

Or maybe come and check out a few of the member's cars at their Friday night street meets, held on the second Friday of each month at the outdoor Coles carpark in Clarinda Street in Parkes.

MORE CAR CLUB STORIES: