We didn't see as many crate-engine dealers at HRR as we have in years past, but Roush Perf
Held every March in Indianapolis, Indiana, the Hotrod & Restoration (HRR) trade show offers a different look at what's new in parts and accessories for our classic Fords.
You can find shiny wheels at SEMA and that killer new stroker engine kit at the PRI show, but the HRR show is more about the hot-rod mentality-looking good, being comfortable, and getting noticed. You'll see upgraded fuel-system parts, air-conditioning kits, LED taillight conversions, EFI conversion products, and much more.
This year's show highlighted the 75th anniversary of the '32 Ford, arguably the car that started the popular hot-rodding culture half a century ago. But don't think this show is just about street rods with flame paint jobs and running boards. The hot-rod mentality is quickly moving from street rods and cars of the '50s into our cars of the '60s and early '70s. Billet interior trim, custom steering wheels, updated wiring with more circuits for accessories, better handling suspensions, and more are creeping into our classic Fords, and we think it's a great way to expand the love for our cars.
Flaming River Rapids Steering Wheel
Thunderbird Rack-and-PinionA visit to Flaming River's [www.flamingriver.com; (800) 648-8022] new products section was where we spotted the company's latest steering-wheel creation, the Rapids (PN FR20162; $400.67). This fresh, new billet and leather design offers a central horn button centered within the billet spokes with black leather overwrap on the rim between the spokes. The Rapids steering wheel is 13.8 inches in diameter and requires its own adapter (FR20162AD; $92.60) to mount.
Flaming River also had its new Thunderbird rack-and-pinion cradle kit at the show ($2,820 for an aftermarket wheel column kit; $2,950 for an OE wheel column kit). Designed to work with the company's recently released Thunderbird tilt column (included with the rack kit but also available separately for original or aftermarket steering wheels), the Thunderbird rack-and-pinion kit is a true bolt-on, with no welding or frame modifications required for 292 Y-block-powered '55-'57 'Birds, and it retains the stock turning radius.
Aeromotive H.O. Fuel Pump Kit
This new fuel pump kit, PN 17245, from Aeromotive [www.aeromotiveinc.com; (913) 647-7300] is an all-inclusive system for carbureted street cars and can handle up to 600 hp without the need for a separate fuel-pressure regulator. Internally regulated to 7 psi, the billet H.O. fuel pump flows 550 lb/hr or 90 gph (at 5 psi) with 3/8-inch NPT inlets and outlets. The kit includes Aeromotive's own fuel filter, braided fuel line, fittings, wiring, relays, and terminals for under $600.
BrakeQuip Custom Brake Hoses
We stopped at the BrakeQuip [www.brakequip.com; (877) 431-0075] booth when we spied the company's colored brake hoses. Depending upon your level of custom-build needs, a colored brake hose or even a custom line/hose might be in your future. While BrakeQuip doesn't sell direct, it can-through its phone or online customer service-direct you to your nearest BrakeQuip dealer and they'll be glad to make up whatever you need, pressure test it, and have you on your way. Lest you think that stainless braided lines are overkill, BrakeQuip has over 500 brake fittings and can make rubber brake hoses as well for all sorts of custom brake projects.
Grant Products Heritage Diablo Wheel
Known for more than 40 years as the largest manufacturer of steering wheels, Grant Products [www.grantproducts.com; (800) 952-6947] has an interesting wheel for those who love flames. The Heritage Diablo steering wheel features a polished-aluminum three-spoke design with CNC-cut flame licks and a polished billet-aluminum horn button with a Grant oval logo. The Heritage Diablo wheel measures 14-3/4 inches in diameter with a 2-1/2-inch dish. Grip options include a flame-pattern, high-gloss grip in black or white; and a black leather or mahogany wood grip. Pricing runs $414 for the leather grip, $425 for mahogany, and $440 for the flame pattern.