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Caroselli Design logoContact Henry Caroselli
Caroselli Design
214 Main St., Unit # 15-B
El Segundo, CA 90245
(310) 322-2767

© Copyright Caroselli. No images or text located anywhere on this site may be reused or republished without expressed written permission from Rodster, Inc., d.b.a.: Caroselli Design. The Rodster Street Rod design is protected by U.S. Patent # D450,284. "Rodster®" is a registered trademark of Caroselli Design.
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What is Kit Car Magazine saying about the Rodster® Street Rod?

Kit Car

September 2002

Family Rod

The Caroselli Design Rodster is unique by itself, but this one was expanded to become a four-seater that can accommodate an average family

text and photos by Mike Blake

Quality time has become a buzzword in America, and quality car time fits right in with that philosophy of spending more of your off-hours with family. The fun of having a kit car and the strategy of spending more time with your family may seem mutually exclusive, however, when you're faced with the prospect of owning a two-seater or a roadster.

As a result, more and more kit car builders are turning their thoughts to four-seat, family-style kits. Two such hobbyists are Jim and Joan Drucker of Larchmont, New York, who took a Caroselli Design Rodster and turned it into a four-seat Family Rodster.

The buildup and modifications were done by Bob Venezia of Some Assembly Required in Huguenot, New York. Bob builds custom cars and had previously built the Druckers a Suzuki Swift, which he converted into a beach car -- no roof and cut-down doors. The Druckers told Bob they wanted a '50s-style hot rod for the family -- a fun car they could enjoy with their two teenage children.

The concept of a four-seat Rodster was Bob's vision. Bob showed them the Caroselli Rodster; he explained the conversion, and the Druckers left the rest to Bob.'

The car is the same size as the Rodster and fits on the same shortened ';92 Blazer S-10 chassis. Bob added 1/2 inch-square tubing with a 0.065-inch wall thickness under the outer skin of the header and riveted a 1/8x1-inch aluminum strip through the plastic header cap to provide a small gap for the new top to slide into.

Bob modified the tonneau cover by 4 inches to allow for a Wrangler C-7 jump seat addition. He removed the B-pillar braces on the Rodster to allow access to the rear seat and welded the fold-up brackets from the rear seat of the donor to the sport bar to re-brace it. Then he cut the tonneau cover by 3 1/2 inches to allow for a hardtop conversion as well.

Bob then added rear hinges to the rear seat to allow it to fold down for cargo and bonded an aluminum plate to the inside cover above the B-pillar to accept bows for the convertible top, and violą! The two-seat Rodster became a family rod.

Bob also lowered the Beltech suspension by 3 inches for a better ride and installed a GM 4.3L V-6 engine. He harvested nearly everything else from the donor car--aspiration, ignition, transmission, wheels, shocks, brakes and gauges.

For a nice '50s hot rod look, Bob added a 15-inch Grant wood steering wheel, Dolphin Gray upholstery from East Coast trim, and gray nylon carpet; ubiquitous, '50s-esque fuzzy dice hang from the rearview mirror.

He had the car painted PPG Radiance Candy Apple Red with a gold base, and he installed the black canvas convertible top.

Bob's creativity and work allowed the Druckers to gain their dream; a spiffy hot rod they can drive around Larchmont, with their children enjoying the ride as well.

Until someone comes up with a four-seat Cobra or GT40, those who don't want to ride around in a Hummer kit might do well to consider a four-seat Rodster. As ads of yesteryear declared, "It's fun for the whole family."

Caroselli Design
Dept. KC, 128 Center St., Unit B
El Segundo, CA 90245

Some Assembly Required
Dept. KC, P.O. Box 171
Huguenot, NY  12746