A feature here at the Daily Driver is the Car Crash. Breathe easy – no actual cars were harmed in the making of this crash. That would be a crime, and a cryin’ shame. Our Car Crash is much more fun – in a “crash a party” kind of a way. If you’ve ever seen a vintage car and wanted to see the interior or wondered about its restoration process, then the Car Crash is just the post for you. Join us as we explore the details of a gorgeous vehicle…

We see many a kustom, hot rod, muscle car and other beautifully odd creations in our travels to shows… but this one literally stopped us in our tracks.  What the heck is this rolling piece of metal sculpture – and where has it been all my life?

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Meet “RODriguez” – a kustom built by Junichi Shimodaira of Paradise Road, a shop in Nagoya, Japan. This breathtaking kustom was finished in 2003 and has won several awards in both the United States and Japan. Purchased in 2005 by Chuck Schauweker, he takes it to plenty of Southern California car shows and continues to win award after award. We first met Chuck at the Brea Baptist Church Car Show,  and let me tell you – he loves this car – and loves to share with everyone even more.  And we LOVED hearing about it.

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The car started life as a 1930 Ford.  The all steel body was wedge cut 4 inches, channeled 8 inches and smoothed. The custom built grill houses 1959 Cadillac running lights.

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The fenders are hand crafted out of steel.

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A stock Olds Rocket engine rests between the rails.

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The frame has been Z’d and boxed from front to back and runs a TCI drop axle in the front and a Chevy 10-Bolt with a Posi in the rear.

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Look at that custom built steering wheel and steering column support! The line between art and function are definitely blurred here, and that’s a good thing.

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The rear taillights are 1958 Caddy running lights.  We love the pinstriped art on the back, too.

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We ran across Chuck and “RODriguez” again at the Benedict Castle Concours (check back later this week for coverage).

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RODriguez certainly makes us wonder what else Japan has to offer in the way of wild automotive creations.  With its intense stance and truly unique and stylized look, this has quickly become one of our absolute favorite hot rods, and we can’t wait to see Chuck and his Japanese kustom at upcoming shows!

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