I thought i’d tell you about some friends of ours who love their old school Fords and have some wicked stuff in their portfolio.
The guys i’m talking about are Skull and Pistons Garage (S & PG). Full of rock ‘n roll attitude and style, S & PG are knocking it out of the park in the UK custom scene.
I met them at a launch event at the Ace Cafe a little while ago and what they are doing blew me away. They are so slick and full of enthusiasm, spirit and passion.
Who are they? In their own words; Skull & Pistons Garage is born from Helen and Stephens infinite and slightly obsessive love of cars and is a British brand, established in 2014, specialising in the customising and renovating of classic British cars. They create head turners, full of nostalgia and style. Forget that aftermarket, bolt on approach, we’re talking custom work that looks like it came out of the factory that way. Stylish and full of rock ‘n’ roll attitude; they’ve been doing it in America for years, now it’s our turn.
From big builds to sold-as-seen classics, Skull & Pistons Garage brings classic vehicles to a wider audience, making our projects an obtainable, practical, reality when previously classic vehicles could have just been a fantasy.
This clean, classic, 1600GT Cortina received a 4” roof chop which was a bitch to do but it’s been done properly, no half measures, and has been done so well it looks like a factory job. To make it work they had to chop the roof up, widening and lengthening it in the process. This was made even more complex by challenges offered up by a 4 door shell, and the result is flawless.
S & PG’s Cortina reeks of subtle changes and modifications that have taken many, many hours to complete, some have been done over and over again because the finish or look wasn’t didn’t meet the exacting standards of Helen and Stephen. They have retained the 1600GT crossflow lump but rebuilt it and bolted a set of 40’s…...perfect.
S & PG take no prisoners. There are no corners cut, no half measures. This Cortina is entirely rust free, straight as a die from tip to tail and the paintwork is show quality with a glass like finish. We’ve written about this build before so won’t labour the point. This drop dead gorgeous build is a mix of gangster style and a modern twist on a classic custom build.
When you walk around the car and take time to drink in the exceptional attention to detail, you start to notice more and more cool and subtle touches. From the expertly smoothed rear end with frenched custom rear lights to the shaved rear doors. From the hispec callipers wrapped in minilite style Rotas, to the detailed underside with colour matched suspension bushes, this car is breathtaking.
So what's next? Plenty! Next up is a rare in the UK MK3 Cortina pickup imported from South Africa. It's had a hard life but due to the dry climate, there is almost no rust, making this perfect blank canvas. This is going to get the custom muscle car treatment with subtle bodywork mods to clean up the silhoutte, a bespoke interior and GT40 replica wheels. To make it more comfortable to drive there's going to be power steering and electric windows and the cherry on the cake, a V8 with type 9 manual box. skull-and-pistons-cortina-pickup
After the pickup there’s a 1964 MK1 Cortina estate waiting in the wings. If you thought chopping up a MK2 1600GT was sacrilege, what will the purists think about a rare MK1 estate? I'm particularly looking forward to this one and will be saving up my pennies in anticipation.
The MK1 will be restored and customised, sleeper style, with a solid nod to originality, it already has a 1500 GT Harris tuned engine on twin 40s which is a hell of a way start. Slammed on air with 2L Duretec, uprated brakes and suspension, big chrome smoothies and power steering, this is going to be an epic build.skull-and-pistons-cortina-estate
You would think that's enough for now but in the background, Helen is undertaking a mammoth build of her own. The Mini Rat Rod or “Monster” is a personal, no budget, project. The shell was purchased for peanuts and needs heavily reworking.
On the to-do list of jobs is de-guttering, de-seaming, paneling in the rear side windows, new ladder chassis, breath some S & PG attitude into the donor V6 engine and much, much more. When it's done It’ll be a Mad Max infused, post apocalyptic, Frankenstein’s Monster of a bitchin’ Mini Rat Rod.
I've said it before and I'll say it again. Skull and Pistons Garage are the next big thing in the UK custom scene. You can get regular updates and find out more on their website and the guys are very happy to talk about bespoke commissions.
I’m proud to know the guys and can't wait to see where Skull and Pistons Garage take the scene.
Have a look at their film here....youtu.be/NaGbKAdCilE