The whole thing with customizing is to take a car that everyone has and make it your own. When "Topo" and his nephew "Junior" set out to make something different, they went with the "go big or go home" motto. A friend named Martin brought Topo along into this lowriding thing quite a few years ago. Martin owned a few lowriders and would take Topo along with him to the shows to see what was going on in the scene back in the day.
Later on down the line, when Topo was old enough to drive and in the market for a car, his brother Tino surprised him with an '85 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham. The stage was set for a lifetime dedicated to one of the modern day staples of lowriding and Topo has built nothing but Caddies every since. Having done quite a few cars, Topo felt it necessary to step up his game and spend quite a few nights staring at the ceiling through the purple haze. When the smoke and his mind cleared, it was obvious what he had to build and that was something that GM had neglected to, a two-door big-body convertible.
Engineering on something like cutting a four-door car down to two doors at first glance seems like an easy deal. Topo and Junior spent many days brainstorming before they started the project. Since none of this had ever been done before to their knowledge, it was up to them to figure out even the most mundane things, like body moldings, the length of the doors and the door panels, just to name a few. There were many trips to the junkyard finding parts that would work.
Take for example the convertible top, which is from a Chrysler LeBaron convertible. Topo spent plenty of time there eyeing up convertible tops and came to the conclusion that the LeBaron top would work. With some modifications, it works like a charm. As a matter of fact, the project was going along more quickly and smoothly than anticipated. With the 2005 Lowrider Magazine Super Show looming around the corner and things going so well, they figured that they would put themselves into high gear.
Shooting to have it ready to debut at the Super Show had Topo and Junior pulling quite a few all-nighters to have the car ready in time. In the end, the car made it, though not quite complete, but that's where Sheen Jones of North Carolina comes in. The new owner made some changes to the car, like changing out the top, adding a Continental kit and having the side glass made, which in itself was a $6,000 expense! In the end, what you have is a car that's totally unique and the perfect addition to this topless issue.
Owner: Sheen Jones
Vehicle: 1995 Cadillac Fleetwood
City/State: Charlotte,North Carolina
Club: No affiliation
Engine/Drivetrain: Stock 350 LT1, with painted plastics and some cleaning to keep things moving.
Body/Paint: The heart and soul of this car is the love that "Topo" and "Junior" at Bowtie Connection in Artesia, California, put into making it what it is. The car was cut and welded until what emerged was a big-body two-door convertible. Abraham at G's Auto Body in Long Beach, California, straightened all of the panels and prepped the car for paint. Levi of Lynwood, California, took a roll of tape and laid out a few patterns before going to work with the spray gun. With a combination of pebble-base pearls and a water drop effect hidden in the paint, it's certainly a show-stopper. Angelo came in after the fact and pinstriped the entire car to complete the outstanding paint job.
Interior: What seems to be a seemingly stock and simple interior actually took some work to make happen. The door panels, front and rear, had to be modified to fit along with the back seat. All of the seats were done in gray leather and the custom-made convertible frame was fitted with a custom gray canvas top. Fredrico Rivera at Bowtie Connection performed all of the upholstery work.
Sound System: Two Rockford Fosgate Punch 1000s make sure that all of the speakers are properly powered. An Alpine head unit is the brain of the system and the Kicker tweets and mids are the arms that tickle your eardrums. Three 10-inch Crossfire subwoofers in a box in the trunk rattle you to your core. Two Alpine 7-inch screens offer up some visuals. Topo and Junior performed all of the work at Bowtie Connection.
Setup: When bouncing down the boulevard, the owner has the Hop Shop in Santa Ana, California, to thank. One Whammy pump makes it all happen with its square tank along with six solenoids, six batteries, 6-inch front cylinders and 10-inch telescopic cylinders in the rear. When you cut a four-door and make it into a two-door, some stiffening is in order and Cesar at Homies Hydraulics in Paramount, California, took care of the frame reinforcement.
Tires: P155/85-R13 Winston
Wheels: 13x7 L.A. Wire with blue spokes and gold nipples, mmmmmm