Ron Covell, of Freedom, California is considered one of the best-known professionals in his field. Born in San Jose in 1944, Ron nurtured his automotive passion during his high school years in Los Gatos by building a flathead-powered channeled Model A coupe, followed by a Deuce 5-window. After high school he enrolled in a collision repair program at San Jose City College, and built an aluminum body for a '23 T roadster as a class project, which he still owns.
During his college years, Ron honed his skills by working for San Jose race car body builder Arnie Roberts. After graduating, he started his own business building bodies for the chassis built by the legendary dragster builder, Kent Fuller. After ten years building dragster bodies, Ron's attention was drawn towards street rods. One of his early projects gained national recognition - a Tom Daniels designed track roadster built for Tom Prufer, and featured in a series of articles in Rod Custom magazine.
Ron returned to school in the early 1970's, studying sculpture. He was very much inspired by the work of Don Potts, who was on his graduate committee, and Michael Cooper, who has become a close personal friend. Ron received a Master's degree in Sculpture from San Jose State University in 1976.
Since then, Ron has spent much of his career working on street rods and custom motorcycles. His cars have won America's Most Beautiful Roadster awards at the Grand National Roadster Show twice, and he has done work on several other cars to win this coveted award, as well as many other awards at car shows across the country. His work on cars and motorcycles has been featured in countless magazine articles, in this country and abroad.
Convinced that other people had an interest in learning the skills he had spent a lifetime developing, Ron held his first metalworking workshop at his home base in 1993. The first workshop was such a success, he started offering them on a regular basis, and soon started traveling the country to help fill the demand. His workshops continue to grow in popularity, and over four thousand people have attended so far. In 2001 Ron held his first international workshop in White Rock, British Columbia.
Ron and his wife, Aloma, market a line of DVDs by mail order. His popular column, "Professor Hammer's Metalworking Tips" has run in Street Rodder Magazine since 1995, and in 2000 a second "Professor Hammer" series, focusing on issues unique to older trucks, was launched in Classic Trucks Magazine. Ron has written technical articles for Street Rodder Magazine, Classic Trucks, Super Rod, Metalcrafter's News, Sport Aviation, and Hot Bike magazines.
What does the future hold for Ron Covell? After spending a lifetime building cars and motorcycles for other people, he now looks forward to the time when he can again build a project for himself. Expect to see something rather unorthodox emerging from the Covell shop in the near future!
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