A shop without a building.

So I am currently between buildings. I moved out of my shop on Denver Ave before having a new building built. I was forced out before I was ready. I have been planning a new building for a few years now but in my busy life I put it on hold. I am going to take my life as a car builder out of overdrive. It is time to put everything in a lower gear and build some of my own projects starting with the AMX I have owned since highschool. I sold off or gave away most of my larger tools. My new shop is going to stay clutter free.

1952 Chevy Upholstery

The seats were in great condition. With the springs and padding all in tact I was able to reupholster them with no problems.

Exhaust on 52 is done

Exhaust is done from the angle plug compatible stainless shorty headers to the exit behind the rear tires. I used the Warlock x pipe made by Flowtech. It features flow intensifier cutouts. This makes for an easy transition to uncork the headers. The mufflers are a 2 chamber keeping the interior drone to a minimum while still giving the tailpipes the great V8 sound.

I made the exit behind the rear tires. I will add a tip to get it beyond the fenders once the box and fenders are installed.

Putting in electrical, steering, Vintage Air, wipers, stereo into cab final time.

I assembled inside of cab for final time. The power brake master cylinder and vacuum booster. The bracket for brake pedal. The steering column, hooked it up to the steering box. Wired up the 22 pin bulkhead connector, put in speedo and gauges along with GPS antenna for speedo. Installed the Vintage air unit with heater. Installed wiper assembly with new electric motor. Installed Vintage radio and hidden antenna. Wired up the engine, finished the wiring headed out back. I hooked up the battery and tested all circuits. Everything worked as planned.

Engine and Transmission get mounted

The transmission and engine are mounted about 3 inches back from the Firebird original location. I tried four sets of headers before finding a set of shorty headers that fit the angle plug heads. I used the later model metal engine mounts and wekded them to the crossnember. I used 1957 Chevy motor mounts mounted them to the motor and it fits perfectly.

The transmission cross member was a left over from a modified Mustang I did a few years ago. I bolted the cross member to the frame and welded a plate to cross member to use the original 700r4 mount.

The Front of Frame Boxed and Reinforced

The front frame and suspension is from a mid 1970’s Pontiac Firebird. The frame had already been mated to the truck frame when it came into the shop. I Reinforced the splice with angle iron and then used iron plate to box it. It will now withstand some abuse.

383 Engine and 700r4 are ready

The 383 with the Scat forged crank and rods. Wiesco forged pistons, Howard’s Rattler cam, Crane Fireball heads, topped with Fitech fuel injection.

The engine has been broken in on the shops engine stand. The 700r4 transmission has been torn down, wired for lockup convertor to only engage in overdrive and to unlock when brakes are applied. A 2500 rpm convertor is used.

Cab of 1952 Chevy Fitment

The cab and fenders are put on the frame for test fit. The doors are adjusted for closure and gap. Front fenders and hood are also adjusted for fitment. All shims are labeled and bolt locations noted. Then it all comes back apart.

Four Link Rear Suspension

  • The four link is nearing completion. The truck is a 1952 Chevy, but the back half of the frame ends up being from a 1941. There is splice I have to redo but I thought they just shortened frame to a short box. 
  • I was cussing Speedway Motors for the poor fitment of the 4 link kit until I finally figured it out. With some time I got it all to work.

After removing 8 layers of paint big surprises on the 1960 Studebaker Champ

Studebaker Champ

This Studebaker Champ was built in 1960. Sometime in  it’s life it was blue then yellow then yellow again and then gold. It was never sanded down between colors but it did get lots of primer coats between colors.  I chemically peeled the multiple coats of paint only to find 4 to 5 gallons of plastic filler in the doors and 3 fenders.

I have had worse in my career. I had a 57 Chevy hardtop years ago that the bottom half of the car was sculptured with Bondo up to two inches thick. The difference is the customers the 57 Chevy owner seemed to think it was my fault and I should fix it for free. The Studebaker owner understands old cars are just that. By the way the 1957 Chevy didn’t get fixed for free.