Custom Mods AND Complete Restorations

nos·tal·gi·a (n-stlj, n-)


1. A bittersweet longing for things, persons, or situations of the past.

2. The condition of being homesick; homesickness.

We've all been sitting around a dining table or at a party or wherever, when the conversation suddenly turns to "the good ol' days".  Depending on your age, that can mean alot of different things!  My husband and I are "baby boomers".  Born in the fifty's and raised before the invention of video games, personal computers, cell phones, cd's and dvd's, and what have you!  We grew up knowing that you came home for dinner when the street lights came on, not when mom called you on your cell phone!  We played "kick the can" and "stick baseball" in praries and parking lots.   We grew up listening to people like Elvis, Buddy Holly, Jimmy Hendrix and the other "father's of rock and roll".  As teenagers, we wore "mini skirts" and guys dressed like "greasers" and we all waited with baited breath for the day when we could drive......
And, we had cars........big, beautiful, bad, mean, gas-hungry, muscle cars!  Yup, those were the "good ol' days"!  The days when the big block motors roared and engines like the "hemi" were born!  Our cars were made of "iron" that was beautifully styled into bold curves and delicate lines that simply screamed "look at me"! 
The days of the muscle cars are unfortunately gone.  But the beauty of these fine works of engineering art lives on.  My husband, Larry Blackman, and his partners are dedicated to bringing back the "good ol' days" of the muscle car by restoring these fine vehicles back to their original beauty.  They pride themselves in being to take these old, rusted, forgotten, iron wonders and bringing them back to life! 
They have years of dedicated experience in the field of restoration and custom modification.  They have been taught by some of the most famous car builders in their time and have produced many show winning "original restorations" and custom modified "hot rods". 
Whether you are into muscle cars, motorcycles, restorations or custom mods, we can help your dreams become a reality!  Join us in taking a look at the following shots of some of our "magic creations".....
Check back often, as there are many more to come!


Welcome to Our Works in Progress Page!
Here you'll find all of our current
works in progress....
The vehicles presented here are currently being restored or customized at our loation.  Some of the vehicles are for sale and some are just for show.  Vehicles that are for sale are for sale by the owner and Denney's Auto Body and Custom Shop will provide you with the contact details for you to get in touch with the owner regarding any sale information.  LDJ Auto Body and Custom Shop is not involved in the sale of any vehicle and all sales are the sole responsibility of the parties involved.  LDJ Auto Body and Custom Shop and it's employees assume no liability regarding the sale of any vehicle presented by it's owner and no warranties are either expressed or implied by LDJ Auto Body and Custom Shop.
"1957 Chevrolet Two Door Hard-Top"
This 1957 Chevy 2-Door Hard Top project is currently in progress.  The chassis is finished.  The frame has been blasted and painted. (California frame)  Rebuilt motor.  700r4 transmission, rebuilt rear end, 2" dropped spindles, rear springs pocketed for wider tires.  Front disc brakes.  Unisteer rack & pinion steering.  All brake and fuel lines are installed. 
Body is pretty solid.  Needs to have metal work completed  Have complete front end clip and all trim.  There is no glass or upholstery.  Lot's of money already invested in this pretty car.  Owner says sell her as is.  He has too many projects in progress and something has to go!  His loss is your gain! 
Please contact us for price and owner contact details.  (813) 644-4497
Updates to our projects page will be posted regularly...... so please check back often!
The Cutlass 442 is a favorite of every muscle car enthusiast!  It's distinguishing stripes allow for great color combinations in a variety of paint colors.  This 1970 Cutlass 442 Convertible is a fine specimen of the ragtop version. 
This car came to us with most of the body work finished and our job was to correct the body work flaws and complete the job with a custom paint job.  She'll be finished using a  tiny silver "mica" flake infused in an "Infinity" based black paint with a custom pearl white "original design" 442 racing stripe!
This car will no doubt be a "head turner" when finished.  The following pictures show the car as it arrived to us.  We'll be posting regular updates by the week so check back often.  The proposed finish date will be around the third week of November!
UPDATE!  This beautiful specimen is now ready for the paint booth.  After a couple weeks of straightening and fixing some of the original body work on this car, she's ready for paint.  We're all excited here as this will be the first "finished" project out of the new shop!  Kudo's to owner, DA, who has chosen a simply fabulous color scheme which we know will be a knockout design.  She'll be dressed in black mica flake, a deep black with the tiniest hint of mica flake to bring out the gorgeous lines of this classic muscle car.  Add to that some pearlized "off white" (to match the pristine drop top) 442 classic racing stripes and she'll definitely be a show winner.  Here's some pics of this wonderful custom classic in primer and ready for the booth.  As you can see in these comparison photos, all body work has been straightened and the body lines fine tuned.  Take special notice of the door alignment, which was definitely a problem on this vehicle.  For our do-it-yourselfer's out there, bear in mind when working with one of these particular classics, meaning the Olds Cutlass, Chevy Monte Carlo, or Pontiac Grand Prix, always replace the door hinge assemblies as these door are enormous and the shear weight of the door caused problems on these vehicles even when these beauties were new.  The newer style door hinges are better engineered and made to more evenly distribute the weight of these monster doors and will also save wear and stress on the fender areas where the hinges are mounted.  In most cases this is extremely important in these older vehicles because a lot of them have major rust problems in the lower fender area and old hinges will definitely allow enough play to cause stress cracks in your body fillers and even worse, the paint, once the vehicle is painted.  The same goes for the hood on these muscle cars. 
The hood on all of these vehicles is huge.  It's made to house some of the larges cubic inch motors ever built!  So definitely look into replacing the hood hinges also.  It will be well worth the extra couple of dollars when it comes time to line everything up.
Check back with us soon!  This car should be finished by the end of the weekend.  We'll definitely be putting up some finished photos! 
A number of you have inquired regarding whether this car is for sale or not.  According to her owner, she is not for sale at this point.  We'll let you know of that status changes. 
See you soon!
Larry and Dee Blackman
LDJ Auto Body and Custom Shop

Well, the 1970 Cutlass 442 project car that we have been working on here went into the paint booth yesterday!  It's always a great feeling of accomplishment when a project car reaches the paint booth.  Regardless of whether it was a complete, ground up restoration or just a new custom paint job, these older beauties are what it's all about.
Here's some pics of the 1970 Cutlass 442 as it went from primer to paint!  The final pics will be posted tomorrow.
Shown here with sealer in place, she's ready for paint.  As with most all of our custom jobs, this vehicle was finished using all DuPont products. 
We endorse and recommend DuPont products here at LDJ and have been using them for almost 30 years now.
After allowing the sealer to dry, she's ready for the first base coat.  The following pictures show the progress from base coat thru the application of the pearl white 442 racing stripes.
With the black base coat in place, it's time to start the racing stripe.  The stripe is taped off and sprayed using a tri-color pearl by starting with a white base coat and then the pearl.  The stripes on this car are the original configuration and included the two large hood panel accents.

With the stripes in place, the car is ready for the final clear coats.  The car was finished in DuPont Black Mica Metallic with a tri-color pearl white original 442 racing stripe.  The finished product will sport 6 coats of DuPont clear to protect the finish.
Check back tomorrow for the final shots of this beautiful car after wet sanding and buffing.  We'd like to thank the owner for allowing us to follow the work of this vehicle so we could take you through the steps of a custom paint job.  The finished car will have chrome 1970 Cutlass 442 bumpers which were fitted prior to the paint job.  


As I told you last time, the chrome bumpers and eyebrows arrived over the weekend and she was sooooo beautiful in her new bling, I just had to run the pics!  So here for your enjoyment is the finished 1970 Cutlass 442 Convertible in all her "chrome bling"!
We also want to thank her owner for letting us show her off here!  Many of you have asked about whether or not this great car is for sale!  As far as we know right now, she is going to be his driver for awhile.  We'll be sure to let you know if we hear anything about the car going up for sale! We'd love to hear your comments and see some of our reader's projects!  Please let us know what you think AND send those pics in!  We'll publish them right here so we can all discuss these great cars! We look forward to hearing from you!

Larry and Dee Blackman
LDJ Auto Body and Custom Shop

Shown below are some of the completed paint pictures before the chrome arrived.  What a beautiful car this turned out to be:

1970 Volkswagon Baywindow Bus Make-Over

Our newest project arrived today at LDJ Auto Body and Mechanical in Gibsonton, FL. We are doing a custom "make-over" on a 1970 VW Baywindow Bus. Our "babyboomer" friends will relate to this one!

What a great vehicle! The nostalgia in this one runs deep and I'm sure our "VW loving" readers will agree. The bus is actually in really great shape. The owner plans to use the vehicle as a "rolling billboard" for Hawks Electric Tatoos, his tatoo shop in Tampa, FL.

We're excited about this one and hope our readers will be too. We will be featuring the bus in an upcomming article next week when it is ready to go back to Joe to have him and his partner cover the sides of the vehicle with original artwork! The vehicle will then come back to us for a clear coat and finishing.

Register now for updates so you don't miss this one!

Happy Motoring!

Larry and Dee Blackman
LDJ Auto Body and Mechanical
Gibsonton, FL


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