I meet the coolest people at Forgotten Fiberglass headquarters here in Tampa, Florida. Today, via phone, I met Doug Shinstine from Washington State.
Doug has known about a Woodill Wildfire lurking around the Northwest United States for nearly 50 years. It just kept disappearing and reappearing and disappearing. Finally, about 25 years ago, a friend of his (Brandon) grabbed it and stored it in his garage as a future project. Twenty-five years later, the project was passed from Brandon to Doug – but not without a story or two!
This Wildfire was drag raced for years, and may have been a sports car at birth. When Brandon bought it, he put it in a garage with future hopes of restoration. But then he started working on the garage, and as you’ll read below…the car got walled-in – with no way out. Doug, literally, had to cut the garage open to get the car out last Fall – the first time it saw daylight in years!
(Attn: Mike Phillips from Autogeek / What’s In The Garage – This would have been quite an episode for you to film for your show! – Maybe you too Tom Cotter!)
Rather than my retelling the story, let me share with you the letter – and then phone call – I received from Doug today about the Wildfire. Here it goes…
Letter From Doug Shinstine (May 22nd, 2011):
In August of 2010, I bought a 1954 Woodill Wildfire from “Brandon” (good friend of mine) in Tacoma Washington. The car is nearly complete and in a disassembled state. The car title and body tag along with all old photos were tossed in a fire by an upset wife years ago.
The vin # on the current title is dk 100 and the story I’m told is that it’s the 4th car produced in 1954. I have the names of several previous owners and am trying to locate them to hopefully find old photos and info. Brandon owned the car for 24 years and years ago he decided to fill in and side over the garage door with a plan to cut in a new door on the opposite end of the garage.
While he did fill in and side over the door, he never got around to cutting in the new door. On the day I picked up the car the chassis was outside under a tarp and the body was still built into the garage. I think the photos of cutting the Woodill out are wonderful..
I told Brandon that when the car is restored he and his garage would be a big part of the story. I believe the car was originally Olds powered and then a s.c.Ford flathead and finally a 430 Lincoln. The car’s local drag racing history was with the Lincoln and that’s probably how I’ll restore it
Hope you enjoy the photos..
So….we can add another Wildfire to our roster of “found cars” and Doug shared with the exciting news that a good friend of his has another Wildfire that may be undocumented, so we may be adding a second Wildfire to our group shortly.
And…I just got off the phone with Doug and he assures me that the Wildfire will get restored – soon. He has one car ahead of it but is looking forward to beginning restoration on the Wildfire soon. Doug’s no stranger to restoring – and creating – very special cars. Recently, he created the 1934 Dusen Arrow – a blend of a 1928 Dodge Senior Roadster body, Pierce-Arrow dashboard, and… a Duesenberg motor. Click on the link below to see pictures of his very cool rod:
I think we can expect to see some great things in store for this Wildfire from Doug.
Go get ’em Doug! We’re all rootin’ for ya!
Hope you enjoyed the story, and until next time…
Glass on gang…
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