Watch: Someone is cloning Ed Roth's 'Beatnik Bandit'

Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s “Beatnik Bandit” is arguably one of the most important cars of the “show rod” era. The bubble-topped show car captured the hearts and minds of kids and drove the custom car world to further extremes. The wild paint, hand-constructed fiberglass body and space-age design made the car an icon of the era. Even though it didn’t see much road time, thanks to its insane tiller operation, the Beatnik Bandit has traveled countless miles as a scaled-down Hot Wheels version.

The Beatnik Bandit was shuffled out of Roth’s stable to fund more off-the-wall show cars, but it kept circling Roth’s orbit. Roth later traded his “Mysterion” to get the Beatnik Bandit and “Outlaw” back. Roth finally sold the Beatnik Bandit in 1970, reportedly for the princely sum of $50. The owner then placed the car in a museum, which was later acquired with the Beatnik Bandit as part of the deal. Unlike the “Golden Sahara,” the Beatnik Bandit was restored and lives as a permanent installation at the National Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada.

Even though the car still exists, that’s not slowing Fritz Schenck from creating a clone. Under the YouTube banner FritzFink, Schenck is showing most of the re-creation of the Beatnik Bandit on YouTube. Sadly, Schenck started the project before jumping onto the video platform, which means we missed the creation of the body.

This first video installment gives some background on Schenck before bringing the viewer up to date on the status of his clone. He also shows how he made the molds for the seats, makes seat bases and gets the seats ready for finishing.

It might not sound like much, but Schenck’s first video is 42 minutes long. That should give you an idea of how long and drawn out this process is. You can check out the start of this video journey above.

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