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I can't believe I missed this thread! , my uncle worked on the French connection in a workshop behind their cottage in Bedford, I remember getting a glimpse inside with some sort of drinks cabinet and my brother helped with something to do with the speakers in the back as our uncle Dougie's wrist was to big to fit in, I fell In love with the the car back then and wondered how it is, I even done a short video on YouTube . I hope the car is still around and being used. 馃殫馃殭馃檪馃檪馃憤馃徎馃憤馃徎
 

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I remember the car before and after it became the French connection it was originally metallic blue and a genuine 351 boss mustang , a pretty rare car which at the time meant nothing , it belonged to a mate in strood who was an ex motorbike/sidecar racer down in Kent and was for sale along with a few others he had at the time , he dabbled in a few yanks he sold it and it went to dartford just up the road , I dont remember the buyers name now but at the time we all used to hang around another mates paint shop in Rochester , Pete darwell he owned mech spray and still does ,he was the man to go to in those days for any form of custom paint , the car was brought to him for custom paint and transformed into the original French connection paint job and ray done all the mural work , we were all fascinated at the time by the little Sony rear view camera in the car, quite a few best paint trophies and magazine cars rolled out of that little shop at miles place in Rochester kent in the early days of British customising , here's a few some of us older folk may remember , puddle jumper pop , American graffiti corvette , my own old pop the magician, my old and
ex mark lamode gto then known as sweet painted lady , Ian Dawes black 41 Willys Pete works alongside his son Darren at mechspray and his wife Joan still takes care of the office side of things mech spray are now one of top corvette restorers in the country , I still take a wander up there for a mug of tea relive the old days and see what's in the shop whenever I,m back home they have a fantastic photograph collection of old paint jobs from the golden era of british rodding/customising.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
I remember the car before and after it became the French connection it was originally metallic blue and a genuine 351 boss mustang , a pretty rare car which at the time meant nothing , it belonged to a mate in strood who was an ex motorbike/sidecar racer down in Kent and was for sale along with a few others he had at the time , he dabbled in a few yanks he sold it and it went to dartford just up the road , I dont remember the buyers name now but at the time we all used to hang around another mates paint shop in Rochester , Pete darwell he owned mech spray and still does ,he was the man to go to in those days for any form of custom paint , the car was brought to him for custom paint and transformed into the original French connection paint job and ray done all the mural work , we were all fascinated at the time by the little Sony rear view camera in the car, quite a few best paint trophies and magazine cars rolled out of that little shop at miles place in Rochester kent in the early days of British customising , here's a few some of us older folk may remember , puddle jumper pop , American graffiti corvette , my own old pop the magician, my old and
ex mark lamode gto then known as sweet painted lady , Ian Dawes black 41 Willys Pete works alongside his son Darren at mechspray and his wife Joan still takes care of the office side of things mech spray are now one of top corvette restorers in the country , I still take a wander up there for a mug of tea relive the old days and see what's in the shop whenever I,m back home they have a fantastic photograph collection of old paint jobs from the golden era of british rodding/customising.
Just to clarify details on the creation of French Connection:-
The owner, I think it was Mike Standen, brought the car in with it's previous red custom paint and said he wanted something different.
I had been watching slides of Paris at a friends house which gave me the idea, I spent a couple of days at home designing every last detail of the paint job down to the pin striping on the door mirrors. I produced water colour paintings of side, rear and top views of how it would look. NO ONE else was involved in the design, Darwell knew nothing of it till I turned up and showed him and the owner.
I told the owner it was 'all or nothing', no changes were acceptable by me. Luckily he loved the design.
P Darwell painted it white and lacquered it - I did ALL the artwork.
Darwell later claimed at the Olympia show that he did it and no mention of me and in interviews that he did it and just called me in for the murals - untrue.
I swore I would never work with him again.
Incidentally - You mention 'Puddle Jumper' - my work. And 'American Graffiti' all my design and work and several others - all done before the false claims over 'French Connection'.
Bear in mind I was always freelance, I never worked FOR anyone.
If only Darwell could have accepted he was an excellent body and paint man and NOT an artist and I was an artist and NOT a body and paint man we could have made a great team.
But I have never taken credit for others work and will not accept others taking credit for mine.
Best paint shop I ever worked at - 'Eureka' in Deptford - Pete and Dennis were brilliant and a lot of fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Here is one of them...
. And the second
hope you like., it took me about 3/4months of detailed work to recreate(as best I could). I was glad to have seen The Car in my uncle Dougs( Doug Thompson, Upholstery) Garage in Bedford (Kimbolton Rd) what an absolute Dream of a car, the workmanship!
So you re-did it after I re-did it.
 
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