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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. alterbob
    Joined: Nov 10, 2009
    Posts: 112

    alterbob
    Member
    from Butler,Pa.

    Hey Rusty Did Scott Henderson paint the car in the 80's at riechels garage? I think I remember that. How about pics of your red and white Impala. Keep working on it .
     
  2. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Not this car. I had a '55 2 dr sedan street car that Scott painted back then. This car was always a racecar and has been yellow since 1966.

    Major set back today. I was driving home from work and a girl pulled out in front of me in a full sized pickup (ran a red light) and I T-boned her at about 50 mph. I am pretty banged up and my truck is totaled. I only had liability coverage on that truck and I am not sure if she is even insured yet. The cops were very clear I am not at fault and there was a ton of witnesses. It was a very nice older rust free S-10 I drove to Alabama to buy because there is nothing but rusted junk here. Combination of solid truck, the air bag and seat belts likely saved my life. I guess God figures my work here is not done yet. ;)

    Even still.. I am out my daily driver and need to find something to drive pretty fast. I still need to go to work tomorrow. The wife has tomorrow off so I can use her car. I have the weekend to figure something out. I have a one ton truck I use for towing my trailer but I can't drive that thing daily. At least not for long.

    Things could be worse. I walked away from a very serious accident. Worst one I have ever personally been in.

    Stay tuned.. I'll be back on the project soon!! :D;)
     
    catdad49 likes this.
  3. Glad to hear you walked away, and sorry to hear about your truck. Good luck on your search for replacement.
     
  4. Onemansjunk
    Joined: Nov 30, 2008
    Posts: 220

    Onemansjunk
    Member
    from Modesto,CA

    Glad your Ok!!!! Wish i could help you with this part of History!!!! I'd even sweep up for the honor.
     
  5. Trashed & Hammered
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 589

    Trashed & Hammered
    Member
    from HR,Oregon

    That really sucks you got in a wreck today! Good to hear you're not hurt.
    Update us when you can.
     
  6. Love these kind of post!!:D
     
  7. Great thread!! Love all the old pics! Great story!
     
  8. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    OK.. Sorry I haven't updated the thread lately but I have been side tracked a bit. As I mentioned, I was in an accident in my DD and it is not repairable. I have secured replacement transportation and things are slowly getting back where they were. I am still pretty sore and there are a bunch of loose ends I need to tie up yet invoving that accident. Other driver was 100% at fault as per the police report. I'll post just one O/T post and a couple pics on here just to show how serious it was and as a reminder for everyone to ALWAYS WEAR THEIR SEAT BELTS!!! :eek: I firmly believe that someone was looking out for me that day. Losing a couple weeks on this project seems minor compared to what could have happened. :(

    Then we will try to get back to the build. I will really try hard to scan and post some more historical pics of the car as well as updated current pics this week. Thanks to everyone for your patience. :)

    BB.... just damn glad to still be here..... :D

    s-10 1.JPG S-10 2.JPG S-10 3.JPG
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  9. Baron
    Joined: Aug 13, 2004
    Posts: 3,555

    Baron
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Wow...that was a hard hit! Glad you are OK. You are very lucky by the looks of your S10.
    x2 on the seat belts.
     
  10. alterbob
    Joined: Nov 10, 2009
    Posts: 112

    alterbob
    Member
    from Butler,Pa.

    Glad you are ok . Hey Rusty I won my first event Pgh Raceway Nostalgia race I ran with the gassers 5 rounds won the money. Bob
     
  11. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Update.. I'll start with some current pics just to show you guys I haven't been goofing off... ;):D

    The frame is clean enough for now. I also have the rear axle housing pretty well cleaned up enough for mock up. I have cleaned up the steering box and mount. I need to mock the steering column, pedals, shifter so I can place the seat properly to the roll cage. Speaking of the shifter, the shifter for the glide I am going to use for now is mounted to the trans. The trans needs mounted to the engine so I can add a midplate since this car always ran a stick trans and used the original 55 bell housing mounts. I can't use those mounts on the glide, so I need to use a mid-plate for now. I can cut it back out later if I want to go back to a stick. I also want to make sure I have the trans crossmember where it needs to be. The holes are there but the brackets from the crossmember to the frame are gone. I do have the trans crossmember itself and plan to use it.

    I also have the engine here now. I went this past weekend and picked it up. It was at a friend of mine's shop about 5 miles from my Dad. He went with me to pick it up. He is going to make the cover for the injectors to keep the dirt out while the engine is shut off. I was hoping I could talk him into doing something to help this project along and put his hands back on the car in some way. The stroke has taken a lot of his strength in his hands away but he thinks he can make a vinyl cover. He even volunteered to make two. One out of white vinyl and another out of clear vinyl. I am looking forward to it. I am sure they will both look and fit fine. :D

    Here are the pics I took recently. Not the best but my shop is hard to get good pics in.


    65.jpg

    Front of the frame after clean up


    66.jpg

    Rear traction bar crossmember

    67.jpg

    Here are the modified '61 Corvette frame mounts. You can see exactly where they go once you set them against the inside of the frame. You'll see better later..


    69.jpg

    Steering box and mounting plates

    71.jpg

    Injected 406 on the stand. I am working on mounting the fuel pump right now. Not started yet when I took this pic. You can see the Corvette engine mount behind the water pump. That is not a replacement. It is the original one dad had on the car it's whole life. It has been interesting digging up these parts. Some he has and some I have. Together... we have found probably 80% of the car. Some of it we know is gone because we know where it went. There are a few pieces we suspect could still turn up in either one of our shops.. :)

    70.jpg

    Here are the headers. I am thinking of changing the collectors to 3 1/2" since that is what it had before and you can see them with the wheels up (see avatar). I'll leave them at 3" for now but I will cut off the flanges..

    I'll post some of the historical pics from where I left off before (1967) later... :p
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  12. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Bob .. Congrats on your first win!! You will always remember that!! :D
     
  13. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    More old pics... These are from 1966-1967. That was when the car got the straight axle and fiberglass front end. They started working toward moving as much weight off the front and moving it back. The car needed to weight 3113 with a 283. At one point he had 63% of the weight on the rear axle without any engine set back.

    72.jpg

    Here is the same rear crossmember I took a pic of in my post with the recent pics. This is the '57-64 Olds Pontiac rear

    73.jpg

    Here it is up on blocks while the frame gets modified.

    74.jpg

    Body back on the frame but the trans tunnel is not cut out yet. Straght axle is in. Note the 'Vette in the forground. That was Speed's car.

    75.jpg

    76.jpg

    78.jpg

    Brand new fiberglass one piece front end.

    79.jpg

    Here it is before the front is painted yellow.

    77.jpg

    Here it is back together. I believe it had been run by now since it has shoe polish on the windshield. Looks like the spring hanger is off. Not sure why but must have been working on the axle.

    80.jpg

    Ahhhh... A TRAILER!!! No more towbar!!! Big time now!! :D

    83.jpg

    Here it is before front end paint early in '67

    84.jpg

    Action shots from '67

    85.jpg

    86.jpg

    This was taken Labor Day 1967. Broken left axle and they didn't get it fixed at the track that day. By now though the car was getting pretty well sorted out and was becoming a dominate car in the local D and E Gas class at the local tracks. Note the FED in the background..

    81.jpg

    There's that goofy kid again...

    82.jpg

    Interesting pic here. Note gas prices, windshield was cleaned by station attendent, they were getting gas for both the Nomad and the racer.

    87.jpg

    Last pic from 1967. Some of the "dust collectors" that dad used to refer to them as.

    I need to scan the next batch of pics. Hope this holds you over for a while. :cool:
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  14. Those old pics are so cool!
     
  15. jesse1980
    Joined: Aug 25, 2010
    Posts: 1,355

    jesse1980
    Member

    very cool car, i got a old 55 drag car too. glad to see we are all saving these cars, and god bless your dad.
     
  16. lorodz
    Joined: Jul 26, 2009
    Posts: 3,728

    lorodz
    Member

    awsome story ,awsome pictures ,,,,great job ...cant wait to see the rest.
     
  17. Redz Rodz
    Joined: Oct 4, 2002
    Posts: 490

    Redz Rodz
    Member

    yea, great gas prices & they were giving green stamps too !!! i got some camping gear when my parents cashed in the books, i licked all 1500 stamps , cool build project you have going,getting a 57 nomad for a tow car would complete that package !!!
     
  18. Falcon Gasser
    Joined: Aug 29, 2007
    Posts: 940

    Falcon Gasser
    Member

    [​IMG]

    Thats a nice looking motor Rusty, it looks nasty. See you Saturday at Milan?

    Jon
     
  19. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 48,348

    squirrel
    Member

    This is neat!

    [​IMG]

    looks like they might be the Revell 55 chevy models? I have a bunch of the kits...built my first in 1973 :)

    Thanks for posting the pics and story!
     
  20. Mattbee
    Joined: Feb 5, 2010
    Posts: 990

    Mattbee
    Member

    Sweet build. That is a just awesome you have all the old photos. Matt
     
  21. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Update.. The rear axle housing is back in the frame for mock up. Did that last weekend. I don't have the rear shackles in it yet. I'll have to make them last to get the stance where it needs to be.

    88.jpg

    Been working on the engine this week. The injector has been sitting on a shelf in a machine shop for probably 10 years and was full of dust and debris. I took it all apart and cleaned it then put it back together and put it on the engine. I also roughed in a throttle linkage set up just to see where that will fall. No pics of the linkage yet.

    Took the engine off the stand and bolted the trans to it with the midplate. I clamped the original frame mounts back were they were on the inside of the frame rails. You can see exactly where they went so I bit the bullet and just welded them back in place.

    89.jpg

    Found the original fuel pump and mounting bracket dad used from the late 60s on the hilborn set up he had. I have it mounted on the engine. Only thing I need now is the belt which I ordered last week and should be here in a few days. Also note in the pic below the water pump pulley. That too is original from this car. I also have the original homemade electric water pump motor pulley. I had used that motor on my Vega but that old motor finally gave up and I got a new motor. I will use the new motor with the original pulley set up on this car. You will see a lot of stuff that was "swiss cheesed" in this thing. The fuel pump bracket is another example although you can't really see it in this shot.

    The rubber mounts between the frame mount and engine mounts are original also. I had the rubber part but dad had the metal part. I didn't realize he had the pieces he had and he didn't know I had the parts I had. Pretty cool how this thing is coming together..;)

    90.jpg

    I also was digging through some boxes and found the crossmember to frame brackets (I thought they were gone) and after some swapping around we figured out which one went where and in what direction. We set the engine/trans down into the frame and the bolts all fell into place!! Just like it was made for it!! :D Imagine that!!:cool:

    91.jpg

    The midplate I have was exactly the right width and will just need simple L-brackets to attach it to the frame. I am also going to add engine limiters to the side of the block since I can't use the bell housing mounts with the 'glide. For now, I have given up on it being a stick again coming out of the gate. The crash has drained my savings and I have to just use what I have for now. :mad:

    92.jpg

    Note swiss cheesed steering box brackets

    93.jpg

    94.jpg


    I hope to get the front axle and springs cleaned up and back under it today. I have some O/T stuff I need to do first but that is where we are going next anyway. I haven't had time to scan old pics lately. I'll try to get that done soon. 1968 is next and that was the year the car went undefeated in class everywhere it ran!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2016
    catdad49 likes this.
  22. cooljunk
    Joined: Dec 18, 2007
    Posts: 423

    cooljunk
    Member

    Looking good Rusty. Shure looking forward to seeing this car on the track next year.
    Jeff
     
  23. Falcon Gasser
    Joined: Aug 29, 2007
    Posts: 940

    Falcon Gasser
    Member

    Rusty you are moving along at a good pace, the frame looks good and it must feel good to see the motor sitting in it.

    Jon
     
  24. OahuEli
    Joined: Dec 27, 2008
    Posts: 5,069

    OahuEli
    Member
    from Hawaii

    Rusty, Thanks for starting this thread. Between the bond you and your Dad have and all the history and pictures of the car, its gotta be the best thread going. I'm looking forward to seeing this done. As for the 4 speed, I hope you can get to it eventually. I rowed a vertical gate shifter in a 327 powered '67 Chevelle back in the mid-70s and that shifter made a BIG difference in the 2-3 shift. Lots of fun to drive!
     
  25. 60 ford
    Joined: Nov 23, 2007
    Posts: 1,806

    60 ford
    Member

    Great thread I love these old drag cars the fact that It was your dads is great. Thanks for sharing it with us.
     
  26. c-10 simplex
    Joined: Aug 24, 2009
    Posts: 1,333

    c-10 simplex
    Member

    i kinda just glossed thru it, so maybe you mentioned it, but obviously the front end is not original, but is the rest of the frame stock---dimensionally wise?

    Also, what size/backspacing rear wheels were on the car in the last incarnation(centerlines)?
     
  27. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 829

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yes.. it is stock 55 frame from about the firewall rearward. The wheels are actually Crager Super Tricks and are deeper in the rear than the front. I don't know the back spacing off hand but I should have the wheels out for mock up in a couple weeks.
     
    catdad49 likes this.
  28. lorodz
    Joined: Jul 26, 2009
    Posts: 3,728

    lorodz
    Member

    looking great
     
  29. Butch M
    Joined: Oct 14, 2008
    Posts: 1,577

    Butch M
    Member

    WOW that is so cool love the old pic's. and the new ones to
     
  30. c-10 simplex
    Joined: Aug 24, 2009
    Posts: 1,333

    c-10 simplex
    Member

    i'm just amazed you can fit such wide tires on a stock 55 chevy.
     

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