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This Guys Garage: Wayne Galligan / Mesa, AZ

By , Photography by Wayne Galligan

Let's just flog the obvious: Car crafters are about as non-traditional as you get. In Los Angeles, you're more apt to find a Prius plugged into the wall in a Santa Monica garage than a hot rod. But in Wayne Galligan's garage, we find both a very cool chopped hot rod and a full-blown nitro Funny Car. Yes, that's Kenny Bernstein's original '80 Chelsea King/Budweiser King Funny Car. And, yes, it runs. It's “a cackler,” as Wayne calls it. It took him about two and a half years to complete the restoration, and the car regularly appears at events where Wayne lights up the evening sky. That car alone would be enough, but parked next to it is Wayne's chopped and channeled '32 Ford pickup. But don't stop there. Look up the word “eclectic” in the dictionary, and this photo should be in there, because Wayne is also immersed in other pursuits. Back in the mid-'70s, he messed with a Junior Fueler in the Texas Fuel car circuit with a nitro-injected, small-block Chevy, front-engine dragster. He has built custom motorcycles and three-wheelers for years, and the back portion of his garage is sprinkled with examples. Plus, Wayne says he ran an HDRA Pro Stock Harley drag bike back in late '90s, running as quick as 8.90s with a 103ci V-twin. He's semi-retired now, but you'd never know it by the machines parked in his garage. The sign just above the back door says it all: Welcome to Wayne's World. Indeed.

A. The extra-large toolbox, compressor, and serious-sized parts washer tells you this is no poseur garage. Wayne says he has more than 500 1⁄24- and 1⁄16-scale models on display inside the house. He also has a very understanding wife.

B. If a fuel car and a radically chopped and channeled hot rod aren't enough, there are Harley engines on the bench, and if you look closely, there's a NOS nitrous bottle tucked under the bench just for fun.

C. Wayne discovered the Bernstein car in 2004 in Montana, where it had been running as an alcohol car. That's now a running 525ci Hemi between the framerails. It runs on 90 percent nitro with custom Tom Prock pistons from Venolia, "the nastiest Crower cam you ever heard," Wayne says, and a 10-71 blower running 50 percent over. Says Wayne, "It shoots 5-foot flames out the headers at idle. It's great."

D. This is Wayne's son Brandon's '78 shovel head.

E. That's a handbuilt '32 Ford pickup body that's been chopped, channeled , and sectioned over handbuilt rails. Wayne says the cowl and dash are original so he has a real title, but the rest is handbuilt. With a 9-inch, three-link, and a TH350 trans, it's a driver.

F. In the corner is a '68 mini-50 Indian.

G. The engine is a 327 short-block with a 4-71 and zoomies. Wayne says it only weighs 1,800 pounds, which means this thing scoots!

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