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Projects Bad Banana Resurrection - 55 Chevy Gasser

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Bad Banana, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 4,122


    Great build, Great Hisotry, glad its coming back to life.

    After a few passes with a 427 Crower Injected small block, you might be interested in a 327 anymore?

    Keep the updates coming
  2. lorodz
    Joined: Jul 26, 2009
    Posts: 3,728


    great build
  3. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    Good point.:D

    Update on that. I went to my buddies place last weekend to look over that 427 and we discussed it. That aluminum engine has some issues and it is not all together and missing some pieces. He has a pretty stout aluminum headed iron block 406 (600+ hp) that is complete and has been run some already that will actually work better for what I want to do. We decided we are still going to use the Crower injection on the 406. So.. scratch what I said about the 427.:( It would be cool but as I said before.. I need to get this done ASAP. It is more important to me for it to run without problems right away then what the engine is. I just want a motor in it for now.. We'll build something later more specific for it ;)

    Also.. I was talking to another friend of mine who has a Mr. Gasket Vertical Gate shifter which is what this car had in it the last part of it's career. He says I can have it. :D So... I havn't given up on maybe making this thing stick out of the gate. We'll see how it goes.

    I did get the roll cage yesterday. Looks like it will work great. It is what the car needs to tie it all together being a hardtop. I think that will be the most time consuming part (and the interior tin work). The drivetrain, suspension, steering will be a snap since I have most all of that already.

    I have some O/T vehicle maintainence to do this weekend but I hope to get that out of the way and get back on it sometime later this weekend. I probably won't take many pics until i am ready to put the frame back under the body and start the cage. Until then, I'll try to get more of the old pics scanned and posted.

    BTW.. I have over an hour and a half of my Dad talking about the car on video I shot last week. I interviewed him in his kitchen and found out some stuff I was too young to remember. I need to edit it and post it. I want to also talk to the guy who helped him build the car back in the 60s and who was the guy he actually bought the car from. Together they ran the car at various tracks in central PA. I even have some local newspaper clippings of stories about them from that era. I really want to get them together and interview them both at the same time. I may wait and get that footage too and then edit it into one video before I post any of it.

    Stay tuned... :D
  4. Falcon Gasser
    Joined: Aug 29, 2007
    Posts: 940

    Falcon Gasser

    This is really cool, you are doing great job on this and the background information is got me hooked.

  5. jim_ss409
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 202


    Great project!
    I can't wait to see it done and running down the track.:D
  6. BrianInPa
    Joined: Mar 30, 2010
    Posts: 34

    from Milton

    I have a photo of the Bad Banana that is dated 1966. I beleive it was taken at Numidia dragway in PA.
    My dad did some drag racing in the mid to late 60's and often raced at Numidia, and a couple times at Green Pine.

    As soon as I saw this thread, I did some digging and found the photo. I'll try to get it scanned and post it for you.

    In this photo, the car had the straight axle installed, radiused wheel wells in the back, and wide white wall tires up front.

  7. mt94ss
    Joined: Jul 25, 2010
    Posts: 310


    Great thread... keep the pics and story coming!


  8. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    That would be great!! :D

    I have been sorting pics today and the car didn't get the straight axle until the winter of 66-67. It came out in the spring of '67 with that set up.

    But either way, I would love to see it! Please post it!!

    I have been working on it today. I'll try to take some updated pics and post later tonight. I do have some more pics from 1965 scanned and I will post those later too.
    catdad49 likes this.
  9. Pinstriper40
    Joined: Sep 24, 2007
    Posts: 3,406


    I've been waiting for a no-bullshit thread like this. I can't wait to see it in action again!
  10. Hey Bad Banana,
    Very nice '55 Chevy Hardtop! I remember the "Bad Banana" car runnin' Numidia and Maple Grove, Pa........Not sure if you have this pic??? I just picked up a '66 Nova SS out in Ludington, MI! Enjoy the '55!! :) ***Keep clicking to make image larger***

    Attached Files:

    catdad49 likes this.
  11. alterbob
    Joined: Nov 10, 2009
    Posts: 112

    from Butler,Pa.

    Hey Rusty I figured this was you Good Luck on the Build, hope your dad is feeling better. Bob Bauer
  12. busch
    Joined: Jan 19, 2010
    Posts: 176


    Good luck on getting her back together, This has to help your dad every day thinking about the car and the chance to see it run again
  13. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    Bob!! Yea.. It's me. Dad has seemed better since I started this build. I hope it is good medicine for him. I hope to take this thing back that way when I get it done. We'll have to get together.

    I don't have that pic but I can tell you it is from 1968. I have some with it in this configuation that I haven't scanned yet. Thank you very much for taking the time to post it!! :)
    catdad49 likes this.
  14. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    Car update. Still not much to see. I am still working on cleaning up the frame and added some gussets and welds on stuff that was bolted in it. I took off some unused body mounts keeping with the "light as possible" theme. I hope to have the frame ready to go back under the car sometime this week depending on how much time I get to work on it.

    OK.. Here are some more pics from 1965 and some of the local newspaper clippings.

    For a short time he had the name "the fugitive" on the car in early '65. Also a rare look under the hood at that time. Still was a stock 270 hp 283 but had an Edelbrock cross ram with two AFBs on it and headers.

    The '57 wagon can be seen in the one shot.


    More Green Pine action in color!!


    You can see a pair of homemade hood scoops for the cross ram here.


    Here is one of the pics from the paper and below that is a copy of the original pic.




    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  15. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    These pics are from 1966. The car started the season still in primer but was painted during the summer and finally became the Bad Banana. There is only one pic that I have of it yellow and unlettered. Still towing with the '57 wagon early in the year then got the '57 Nomad. Also you will see in some of the last pics the guy my Dad bought the car from in '64 and who helped him work on the car during this time. The guy's nickname was (and still is) "Speed"



    Slicks in he trunk




    Drawing a crowd with the new paint


    Here it is lettered.




    I'm not even two yet



    In action with the new paint scheme


    Dad and Speed




    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  16. Falcon Gasser
    Joined: Aug 29, 2007
    Posts: 940

    Falcon Gasser

    Great pictures Rusty, you have some neat history to go along with the car.

  17. Baron
    Joined: Aug 13, 2004
    Posts: 3,553


    What great pictures to have. Most of us were not smart enough to take pictures back than. Or if we did, they are long gone. I have very few of a couple of my early cars,but very few. These pictures really bring back a lot of great memories from the late 60's. THANKS !
  18. slammed
    Joined: Jun 10, 2004
    Posts: 8,151


    A great story, and the old pix really tie everything together. You are a man w/ a mission! Good health to you all.
  19. richie rebel
    Joined: Oct 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,184

    richie rebel

    rusty,put the stock grille back in it,good pic's,i'll be watching the build....richie
  20. str8axle55
    Joined: Dec 19, 2006
    Posts: 355

    from MA

    Those are some great pics and the history is amazing. Your dad must be real proud of you doing this, I`m sure it cheers him up a ton. I have a few pics of my dad`s old 55, wish he held onto it. Keep up the good work.
  21. Dude, it needs to go back to the 1968 version! That looks amazing with the yellow steelies and chrome reverse in the rear.
  22. lorodz
    Joined: Jul 26, 2009
    Posts: 3,728


    sweet pictures .....
  23. 8FLEET9
    Joined: Feb 9, 2009
    Posts: 733

    from MASS.

    great car/story/build/history/everything. this story has definately given me personally the best insight into "the way it was"

    good luck, with everything.
  24. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    You haven't seen the pics from 1967 yet ;)

    I have been spending the last few day in the shop. Just me, a 1/2" drill and a 3" wire wheel going to town on the frame. It is about 85% done. I was considering taking it and getting someone to blast it to speed things up but I can't bear to just drop off that frame and hope I get it back in a week...or two... or three... or ever. It'll be done in less than a week this way. My old drill will be pretty tired when I am done though...LOL:D

    I know pretty much every inch of that frame and all of the holes drilled in it for mounting different stuff over the years tell their own story. I was standing there looking at it the other night and was wondering what these large holes were for in front of the rear spring mounts. They went all the way through the frame. :confused:. Then it dawned on me that was where that original traction bar was mounted back in late '64. Holes are still there.. I confirmed it by the location shown in the old pics.

    I'll get some current pics for you guys once the frame is cleaned up. I am going to go pick up the engine in the next week or two. I think I will get the drivetrain mocked up before I mount the body and install the cage.

    As for more old pictures .. you guys aint seen nuthin yet.. ;):D
  25. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    Nah.. It will look like the pic in my avatar mainly because that is what most of the parts I have are. I love the bowtie where the grille is supposed to be. :)
    catdad49 likes this.
  26. This has got to be one of the best threads ever on the HAMB. Best of luck to your Dad and you.:)
  27. On a side note, what ever became of the '57 Nomad tow vehicle? Is it still in the family?
  28. nutajunka
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,466


    Get a cup brush on an angle grinder, it will cut your time more than in half. Sounds like you need to save all the time possible you can. This thread reminds me so much of my dad, and the time we spent in the 60's, wish he was still here. Good luck and best wishes to getting it done in time.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2010
  29. UnsettledParadox
    Joined: Apr 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,107


    coolest damn story every! im glad i get to witness this!

    this pic is killer!!

  30. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana

    It is long gone. There are more pics of the Nomad in 1967. I'll have to ask dad whatever became of it. It disappeared when my dad bought a new 1968 GMC pick-up. I think he said the glide gave up at some point because he was towing with it. I'll find out and post it later.
    catdad49 likes this.

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