Owner Of The Los Angeles-Based Hollywood Hot Rods Shop, Troy Ladd, Leads By Design
Take a walk through any custom car show and you can’t help but
Troy Ladd in his shop – click to enlarge
appreciate the current quality of cool cars being cranked out by America’s top-level car builders. Enthusiast magazines celebrate the achievements of these creative artists and massive trophies adorn the show car displays validating the hundreds of hours of time spent hand crafting these automotive sculptures. So when your peers and media bestow special acclaim on a custom builder, you know there is something truly innovative occurring.
Such is the case with Troy Ladd, owner of Hollywood Hot Rods in Los Angeles. Named 2007 Trendsetter of the Year and the 2010 Builder of the Year, Ladd’s cars are truly unique. They blend a combination of cool exterior design and color with, in Troy’s case, engineering that often goes overlooked upon first glance.
The original concept for the Raybestos Ford pickup – click to enlarge
Troy’s most recent creation, the Raybestos ’32 Ford pickup, is a plenty cool machine true to the original concept with throwback ’32 styling, race-bred knock off wheels and slick interior styling along with that purpose built SOHC engine and Hilborn fuel injection. But while it would appear to be a really nice throwback ’32, that engine/fuel injection combination is a long way from “basic,” incorporating a hidden electronic brain that makes the engine far more streetable than any original Hilborn mechanical fuel injection system could possibly be. Even the engine, which appears to be a classic Ford “mill,” is in actuality a very sophisticated, state-of-the-art 2011 Ford Coyote 5.0 liter engine
– the one used to power Ford’s current run of 5.0 liter GT Mustangs.
“When the engine showed up on the doorstep from Ford Racing, I didn’t even know what it was. It was kind of this spaceship-looking thing,” stated Ladd. “We reengineered the Coyote engine to look like a single overhead cam engine with classic fuel injection. The key was to make it look correct for the ’32 Ford pickup platform.”
This fresh Ford Coyote 5.0L engine sports that cool Hilborn injection and high tech engine management – click to enlarge
The FAST™ XFI™ fuel injection system
was the chosen fuel management system for the project because of its versatility and performance capability. While this car has seen some limited racing, it is definitely expected to cruise and run properly, handling traffic when encountered and putting that Coyote power to the ground when demanded. Ladd himself took on the challenge of getting the fuel injection management system to work with the Ford Coyote engine and Hilborn injection – a challenge he gladly accepted.
Explains Troy, “Designing the fuel management system was a matter of understanding the basics of what it takes to make an engine run. I felt that if I had a solid vacuum signal and some basic parameters for the engine, I could take the FAST™
system, bury the critical modern components under the billet engine valley pan and run the Hilborn style injectors so that they looked like the original configuration. I think we did a pretty good job here.
The FAST™ XFI™ and XIM™ boxes are hidden under the dash – click to enlarge
“I had plenty of folks that thought this was impossible especially on such an advanced engine as the Coyote,” continued Ladd. “But I like these kinds of challenges and knew that it would not be that difficult once I thought the process through. The result is a great running engine that has massive Coyote power and really looks like the classic mechanical injection is running as originally designed. And when you drive it . . .”
The FAST™ system used on the Hollywood Hot Rods Raybestos pickup uses the standard XFI™ system along with the XIM™ Ignition Module
that ensures that the spark plugs are firing at exactly the right millisecond – a high demand function on this high horsepower Coyote engine that sports aggressive camshaft lobe profile design and precise ignition timing.
Neatly tucked under the engine’s center valley pan are the FAST™ fuel injection components – click to enlarge
The XIM™ Ignition Module for the 2011 Ford 5.0L Modular V8 Engines offers simple operational ignition system control and optional programmable ignition system control, independent of the fuel delivery method or any factory computer. This straightforward solution to coil-on plug ignition control is a complete kit that does not require an OE computer or XFI™ – but will work with these components if they are part of your system. When used with an XFI™ Fuel Injection System
, the XFI™ software is used to control the extensive list of XIM™ tuning options. When used as a standalone unit, a few flips of a switch will set the engine type and timing settings, and then you’re ready to run. Easy-to-use adjustment dial ports then allow full control of custom tuning ignition options. The ignition control system works with carbureted, XFI™, EZ-EFI®
and even classic injection systems. Best of all, no special tuning or expertise required.
As is well documented on the internet in both video and story format, the Hollywood Hot Rods pickup runs well and has a great sound whether running open headers or through the mufflers. The Ford Coyote engine, with those custom-made SOHC-appearing valve covers has fooled more than one hot rod “expert,” a fact that generates great pride in Ladd. And why not? Doesn’t everyone want a classically styled, reliable and potent hot rod pickup that this is both fast and fun? You bet!
The Raybestos Ford pickup includes these components parts and cutting edge technology:
- 1932 Brookville Steel RPU body and custom fabricated box (BrookvilleRoadster.com)
- From Ford Racing, the all new 5.0L Ti-VCT “Coyote” V-8 engine from the upcoming 2011 Ford Mustang – deconstructed and re-dressed with vintage accessories to resemble the iconic 1963 Ford 427ci SOHC race motor (FordRacingParts.com)
- Custom vintage-style stack fuel injection setup from Hilborn -- operated by a FAST™ XFI™ engine management system with XIM™ for modern reliability (HilbornInjection.com)
- Tremec 5-speed manual gearbox (FordRacingParts.com)
- Aluminum Speedway Engineering quick change rear axle
- Complete Raybestos Brakes package (Raybestos.com)
- Bias ply Firestone Indy roadster period correct tires at all four corners from Coker Tire (Coker.com)
- One-of-a-kind custom gauge cluster by Redline Gauge Works (RedlineGaugeWorks.com)
- Custom shifter, linkage, pedals and assembly by Wilwood Engineering
- “Lakes” style headers will be handmade by Hollywood Hot Rods, with oval cones, fabricated from polished stainless steel components provided by Megs Exhaust Builders Warehouse (ConeEng.com)
- WIX oil and fuel filters (WiXFI™lters.com)
- Traditional style tuck & roll interior
- Powder coating, metal coating, and media blasting work by Pacific Coast Powder Coating (PacificCoastPowderCoating.net)