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Thread: 1955 Chevy Bracket Car

  1. #21
    Registered Member chasracer's Avatar
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    My Dad could sell the proverbial snow to an Eskimo and he knew how to do a lot of stuff around the house but it wasn't exactly precision work - it was close is good enough work.

    My parents gave me the old RCA set for my room when we got a new tv in the main room. With only 3 channels I would watch a few shows but the overhead light in the ceiling put a lot of glare on the old black and white set. So I had seen dimmer switches at my friends house and I went to a hardware store and got one. I read the directions and replaced the regular on/off switch. I guess the next day, my mom noticed the switch and about freaked out about it. She made dad pull it out and make sure it was right. He took the cover off, pulled the dimmer, looked at it and put it back together. Said it was good. I think I was 13-14, I had already done an engine swap in an old '62 Ford that he gave me to keep me away from mom's Chevy - I did that at 12 years of age.

    About a 1/2 dozen years later, my dad wanted to upgrade the single light bulbs in the garage with fluorescent light fixtures. I had a friend in the electrical supply business and got everything we needed. I hung the fixtures, 3 in the garage and one outside in a storage area and ran all the wiring back to a switch box next to the door. Dad ran a new wire from the fuse box over to the light switch. I had to get home - already had my first son - and he said he would finish it up. He called me later and told me I did something wrong. Every time he tried to turn the lights on, the fuse would blow. I went by after work the next day and we looked at it. I knew I had the fixtures wired correctly. In the switch box he had connected the ground and hot side to the switch, when you flipped the switch it crossed and popped the fuse. He looked at it and said, oh well, I don't know anything about electricity anyway!

  2. #22
    Registered Member BamaNomad's Avatar
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    the mark of a good man is to take all that we're given by our dads (and parents) and move forward... learning and doing more! Good job Chas...

  3. #23
    Registered Member chasracer's Avatar
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    Made a good stab at the driver's side rocker panel. I didn't get it tacked in place yet, I thought about it and figure I had better bring up a door and make sure things fit and look good before going that far.

    I did a little trimming on the replacement panel and just hung with some Clecos so I could start getting the rocker in place.

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    I then needed to cut out the bottom piece of old rocker that was still in place under the door post. That took a fair amount of swearing but I finally got it cleaned out. The Goodmark pieces don't have what I would call nice, crisp lines but for this car I think they are fine. I had to do a little bit of hammer and dolly work but got the front part in place and put a couple of Clecos in it, then got started on the rear of the panel.

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    Next was cutting back the inner rocker panel a bit more underneath the rear window to make additional room. Once again, I had to do a little bit of bodywork to get a decent fitment. I will have to do some more trimming on the replacement panel too but it's close.

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    I also had to go searching for some TH350 parts for the transmission build. I found most of it but the gearset is still missing. I have an upper corner storage area in the garage and I'm going to have to dig a bit more in there to see if I can find it. I also ran across another 36 element sprag and drum which I had completely forgotten about. That was a nice find.

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  4. #24
    Registered Member busterwivell's Avatar
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    you're making me tired with that much work all at once!

  5. #25
    Registered Member chasracer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by busterwivell View Post
    you're making me tired with that much work all at once!
    Ha! That's okay I have entire weeks where I don't get around to anything. I do have a goal though, I really want to make the first test and tunes with this car and those begin around here in March. That's only 6 months out and I have to build a complete chassis, wire and plumb it, build the engine and trans plus put some paint on it. Whew! Makes me tired just thinking about it.
    Remember the "13"


  6. #26
    Registered Member chasracer's Avatar
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    Had an interesting but kind of laid back week. Messed up and didn't get very much done on the '55 however I did manage to get the outer rocker panel and the replacement panel tacked in place. I checked things with the door before doing so and the lines along the rocker and door edge bottom looked pretty good. I am still not sure who made the doors but they're cool in that they are made in two pieces, the inner framing and the "door skin" are separate. This is going to make it easier to get the inner part hung correctly and when that's done all I have to do is glue the outer piece to it. It sounds easy but I can already tell that getting the inner part on there is going to be a real trial of my patience. I wanted to keep the original door hinges on the car but the doors also have to be setup so that they can be opened, lifted and removed from the car too. I also would like to use original door latches but I will have to obtain some new ones.

    I keep batting around the idea of a Mustang ll frontend on this thing but without being able to sell off the front end stuff I have now, I am not seeing a way clear to make it happen. Using the stuff I have now is possible but to do so I need to figure out if I want to use the original frontend K-member or build a new, lighter one. Putting together something lighter would make it a bit more bearable but of course a lot more work.

    So while I'm thinking about all of this I'm also trying to collect my fee for building that last transmission. I understand that sometimes things come up and there are setbacks but I also see times when someone wants something right away but then doesn't want to pay for it in the same fashion. I do very good work and if there's any issue I will make it right but I'm also not a business in the general sense of the word. Anyway it took a couple of trips but finally got that taken care of and of course there is always "something else". It was decided that they wanted to have a transmission temperature gauge which is always a good call if you have plans to lean on it pretty hard. So, had to take the aftermarket pan back off of it and bring that back to my shop. Drill a hole, tap it and put the temperature sender unit in. Now it's another trip back to their place to deliver the pan and put it back on the trans. Just makes my day ya know?

    Had a couple of our regular rides that needed some normal maintenance work and just in the last couple of days finally got the right parts for the repair work on a customer car. Getting parts is really turning into a struggle lately, I ordered stuff close to 10 days ago and one part, an alternator showed up but was the wrong one. So here we go again trying to get that straightened out.

    I also have a broken race car that I am trying to get repaired. I had a starting line accident in it at Summerduck Dragway. Car went out about 45-50 feet and then turned hard right into the wall. Busted up a lot of fiberglass and bent the right front wheel. I had some issues before with the car moving to the right on launch and had triangulated the chassis to set the rear end square in the car - what I found out this week is that was a bad mistake. I got some information from a guy down in S.C. about a different way of squaring the chassis and what I had before was off quite a bit. It took about 6-8 hours of work spread across a couple of days and I'll start with some slow launches to be sure it's right before applying any serious power the next time I get to take it out.

    So next up for this week is looking at that front end stuff seriously and getting the inner rocker panel in place on the left side. The back end of that is going to be tricky as the wheel tubs are going to run into it. I think I will end up just tacking the last 12" of it in place until I know exactly whether any of it needs to be removed. I also need to clean out the left side air duct area - it's full of debris and I need to clean up the sheet metal at the foot board area a bit.
    Last edited by chasracer; 09-17-2021 at 09:55 PM.

  7. #27
    Registered Member BamaNomad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chasracer View Post
    Ha! That's okay I have entire weeks where I don't get around to anything. I do have a goal though, I really want to make the first test and tunes with this car and those begin around here in March. That's only 6 months out and I have to build a complete chassis, wire and plumb it, build the engine and trans plus put some paint on it. Whew! Makes me tired just thinking about it.
    The longest trek begins with the 'first step' and follows with the subsequent steps.. one at a time..

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