Jeff Rankin
Camarillo, California

Bob Condie
Milpitas, California

What is the Rodster®?
What's different about the Super Deluxe version?
What is the Sedan Delivery Street Rod?
The automotive press writes about the Rodster®.
Rodster® Owners speak.

View the Rodster® buildup process.
About the Rodster® donor vehicle.
Cruise the Rodster® price list.

The Rodster® goes on the Hot Rod Power Tours.
Awards for the Rodster®
What is a Hot Rod anyway?
Why a Rodster®?
Who designed the Rodster®?
Turn-key Rodsters®  for sale!
Can you use a V8?
And there's a 4x4 Rodster®.

Frequently Asked Questions: the Rodster® FAQ.
Tell us what you think: e-mail.

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.
  Legal Notice.
Contact Webmaster

What are Rodster® owners saying about the Rodster® Street Rod?

A few words with JOE WEIDNER

Leola, Pennsylvania

How did you find out about the Rodster Street Rod?

I originally wanted to build a ‘32 Ford coupe kit car. One night while I was looking on the internet I found the Rodster website. Ever since I was a kid I have liked the look of the ’40 Ford and this really got my attention. I went through the website numerous times looking at the Sedan Delivery.

Why do you like the Sedan Delivery?

With most of the kit cars there is only room for two. But with the Sedan Delivery there is room in the back for two more people and it can be a very practical car. I live in Pennsylvania where we do not have sunny or warm weather all of the time. This would really be more usable in this area.

When you decided to order the car how did this process go?

There were not a lot of things to decide on when I ordered the kit. I knew what I wanted to do with the car before I ordered it.

Did the kit come in time?

The kit arrived sooner than I expected. In my daily job I deal with a lot of suppliers. They tell you anything to get you to buy their products, but when it comes time to deliver they always have a hand full of excuses as to why they are weeks later than what you were promised. This did not happen.

Did you get your manual ahead of time?

Yes, I did. I wanted to start getting the car ready so when the kit came I would be ready to install it.

Was the manual easy to understand?

Yes, it was for me. I am very mechanically inclined and this served as a very good guide. I read how the kit is normally installed and made some changes in the way I did mine.

What kind of changes and custom touches did you make?

There is a list of things that I did:

1) I used the original hood latch and mounted it to the top of the firewall. Then installed the spring and safety catch on the hood. Now you can open the hood from inside the car. It pops open when you pull the latch and the safety catch keeps it from accidentally coming up if something fails.

2) There are gas springs mounded on the right and left side under the hood. The brackets are fiberglassed to the hood and bolted to the frame. They help lift the hood and hold it open when the hood is up. There is almost no effort required to open or close the hood.

3) Two pieces of 1/8” fiberglass were cut and fitted between the rear fenders and the existing wheel wells. They were fastened to the body and fiberglassed to the new rear fenders. This gives the fenders support and keeps stuff from being thrown up into the fender space.

4) There is a joint in the new rocker panels where they are put together. I did not fasten these two pieces together. I made a bracket that is fastened to the existing inner rocker panel and the bottom on the new rocker panels. This bracket gives it support and also allows you to remove the rockers without removing the rear fenders.

5) The rear fenders are fastened to the body with hex head sheet metal screws and construction adhesive. This allowed the fenders to be drawn in tight to the body.

6) The hood hinge was reworked to allow it to be adjustable. There are angle brackets on the frame that are slotted. This enables the hinge block to be moved up and down, front and back. This gets the hood to line up almost perfectly with the front quarters.

7) The rear lights were removed and filled in with sheet metal. There are ’39 Ford taillights in their place.

8) The side mirrors were removed and the doors were filled in with sheet metal. Peep mirrors were used.

9) Brackets were made for the radiator out of angle iron with gussets for support. They are mounted in rubber to eliminate vibration from the frame.

10) A 4” channel bumper was fabricated using some of the original bumper brackets. It is tucked in front of the radiator and clears the hood. The shelf brackets were eliminated and the inner fenders are bolted to the new bumper. This made everything in the front solid.

11) The rear bumper was sectioned 1” and moved forward 1 7/8”. This kept the rear bumper functional and now it looks like it’s part of the body.

12) The headlights were reworked. Originally there was about 5/8” of the bulb retaining ring sticking out past the trim ring. Now the trim ring and the retaining ring are even.

It sounds like you made some good changes.

I feel that I took something very good and made it a little better.

What did you buy for a donor?

Around here a two wheel drive S-10 Blazer is difficult to find. I started looking in junkyards for a two-wheel drive frame. Once I found a frame, I looked at a couple of four-wheel drive cars. I found one with a rust free body and an interior almost like new. The 1985 S-10 I bought did not have an engine or transmission.

How long did it take to change the frame?

It only took a couple of hours. I used a two-post hydraulic garage lift to raise and lower the body on the frames. It was a piece of cake to do and I would do it again.

What did you do to the frame before you installed it?

I degreased it and tore it all apart. At that point I replaced almost everything that could be replaced and painted it.

What did you use for a motor and transmission?

I rebuilt a 350 hp., four-bolt main 355 cu. in. Chevy with a 650 Holley carburetor and used a reworked 700R4 that has a shift kit and all of the latest upgrades. It also has a 2800 stall speed converter.

How many hours do you have in the kit?

I did not keep exact time on each part of the project but I feel I am close with my hours. I made so many changes to the original donor it should be broken down in areas. The installation of the kit took about 150 hrs. The preparation of the frame and the change took about 100 hrs. The engine and transmission installation took about 200 hours. The upgrades to the kit took about another 150 hours and wet sanding and buffing the car took 30 hours. The total time in the car is about 630 hours.

How many months did it take you to do your car?

I bought the donor on October 22, 2002, ordered my kit on October 24, 2002 and had the car finished on February 21, 2003.

When did you do the work?

Almost every night and weekend was spent in the garage. I had two weeks off when the car went to the body shop.

Did you paint the car?

No. I had the painter do the body work and he put a lot of clear on the car so that I could wet sand and buff it. I have about 30 hours in that work.

Are you going to build another Rodster Sedan Delivery?

Yes, in fact I am looking at a couple of S-10 Blazers right now. I think I just have to build a few more, it was so much fun.

Are you going to do anything different the next time?

Yes. While I was building this Sedan Delivery, neat ideas just kept coming up. I am running out of toy space so I think I would like to build cars for other people and keep thinking up new stuff to do to them.

What do you think the price of a car should be?

They are like any Street Rod; the more unique they become the higher the price will be.

Is this your first project?

No. I have been working on cars for 40 years. I have had a lot of project cars and trucks.

Have you worked with fiberglass before?

Yes. I have had a few boats and Corvettes that I have done fiberglass work on.

How many miles do you have on your car since it was completed?

About three miles. That is about three times around the block. I have applied for a licensed but have not received it. I expect it any day.

You said that you had the car at a show already.

Yes. Two days after the car was finished I trailered it to a show and got a trophy with it.

What were the comments you got with the car?

The most asked question was “What Is It?” People really liked the car and thought it was neat.

Would you care if anyone would contact you about the kit?

No. I would be glad to talk to anyone and share ideas and information.

Would you be interested in building a Rodster for someone?

Sure. I think that would be fun. I would be glad to talk to anyone interested in having a car built for them.

What do you think of our website?

It is really great. I have read all of the articles from the Owners. It is neat to hear about the cars. I wish every one would contribute an article about their car.

OK, what’s your e-Mail address, should people want to contact you?