PEOPLE LIKE US

SAM ĎTIKIí HARRISON > CLEARVIEW, SA

STORY CARLY DALE PHOTOS BRENTYN WAKEFIELD

SAM ĎTikií Harrison and his beautiful wife Molly are not only stalwarts of the South Australian custom scene, theyíre also a part of the furniture at Chopped. We caught up with the ever-approachable Sam as he wielded his pinstriping brush at the 15th Kustom Kulture Weekender in Adelaide.

Tell us about your ride.

Itís a í52 Pontiac, nicknamed The Yak. Itís running a straight-six with a ĎTraumaticí. I bought it locally about seven years ago as I wanted an old 50s car, and this is something different.

What condition was it in?

Everything had been pulled off the car and put inside the body; it was all hanging out every which way. I then built it at my friend Steveís house with help from our clubmates in the Grinders CBB and a few others.

What are the body mods?

Well the roof was chopped off when I bought it, but the metal was all jagged from the cut so we tidied all of that up. Ashley Cave showed me how to weld and do bodywork, while Sean Fitzsimmons showed me the shrinker/stretcher.

We then frenched the headlights, and shaved the door handles, filler cap and boot trim. Ashley also did the interior. Another mate, Aaron Bray, did the grille and surround, and rounded the bonnet corners. Michael Ahrens did, among other things, the exhaust and the suspension to make it sit right.

Then it went for a long test drive?

About two weeks after I got it running we drove it straight to Chopped 2010, 800km away. It blew up on the way back. The tranny was playing up, then it lost all the oil onto the road 300km from home, seizing the motor. It was 3am and I started a new job several hours later!

Any further plans for it?

Yeah, apart from a V8, Iíd love a stark white padded Carson top and to lengthen the doors. I want to paint it a really dark metallic copper Ė the colour is like a Coke bottle held up to the sun.

Possibly Iíll add some shoebox tail-lights, but Iím not sure, as everyone wants 50s Pontiac tail-lights and this already has íem. I just want a smooth 50s custom. But not showy, more like the young guys had them back then.

How long have you been pinstriping?

I started when I was 19 years old, so Iíve been doing it for about a decade. I always loved art and painting stuff. And now I have a signwriting background, which is a help.

Who taught you?

Ray Moondog. Before I knew how to ístripe, he said to me: ďIíll teach you, but once I do and youíre big and famous you need to say that you learnt from Moondog.Ē

Moondog is also part of the KKW team. How many have you been to?

Iíve had a stall here for the past seven years and laid lines on cars at every one. Iíll do handbags, shoes, Eskies, helmets, saws, guitars; whatever.

Today Iím ístriping Chris from the Adelaide Rumblersí Ford sedan.

Whatís the weirdest thing youíve ístriped?

A prosthetic leg. It was a mateís mumís boyfriend.

He asked that I ístripe it while he waited. It was pretty cool and he was really happy with it. s CHECK out Samís work on Facebook at Pinstriping By Tiki.

About two weeks after I got it running we drove it straight to Chopped, 800km away