Author Archive for Peter

Flaming River new key tilt column

Noticed that Flaming River have now introduced a tilt steering column with an integrated key.  It comes in two models, a floor shift or column shift format.  This would suit a rod or custom replacing the ignition sticking out of the dash.

I’m a fan of Flaming River after putting in my collapsible tilt column in the 57.


Re-wiring the Chev

I decided in early 2007 to totally re-wire the car. It was at this time that I also did the interior strip and insulation in preparation for the air-con. It ended up being a big year of mods – re-wire, air-con, collapsible column and power steering.

The wiring in the car hadn’t caused too much grief, apart from ignition components that came from the Premier.

I picked up a new 21 circuit wiring kit a few other goodies from my mate Glenn at Airide.

I started by completing stripping all the old wiring – very satisfying – it went everywhere and had been sliced into, re-routed and messed up the engine bay. Some was original so glad to see it go after 50 years.

It took about 6 weeks to completely re-wire, and a lot of reading up and talking to people to get the best design. The main features are:

Optima sealed battery now in the boot

21 circuit fused box with labeled wiring GM colour coded

Hidden wiring in the engine bay – routed through the guards

50 amp fuse from starter motor to fuse box

Circuit breakers used for feeding hot power to relays and fu

Ignition module and coil hidden under the dash.

Dakota Digital LED Tail lights

Dakota Digital Thermo Fan computer

A couple of shots:

Looking behind the instrument cluster, fusebox on the right, at left is the big 50 amp fuse. It still looks messy under the dash even with new wiring!

Ignition module and coil

Under centre of dash – housing ignition module, coil and DD Thermo box. To the left of the stereo is the HT wiper motor.

Dakota Digital LED Tail light, an easy install and adding to the amount of DD gear in the car. When wiring the tail lights, got tripped up on the need to wire in diodes to stop power going to indicators when brakes applied.

Pictures of the 57 Coupe

While my Chev is at Als getting a Turbo 700 fitted I’ve borrowed his coupe to give it a detail since it’s up for sale. The car drives very nicely, although the driving position in a coupe is a bit different to a 4 door sedan. There’s more headroom and rear leg room in a sedan although you do get a bigger boot in the coupe.

Click on the pics for high res photos

Turbo 700 for the Chev

This weekend we swapped the Turbo 400 3 speed auto in the Chev for a Turbo 700 4 speed giving me an extra gear and hopefully better fuel economy and quieter highway cruising. I bought the 700 off my mate Al who’s also installing it – thanks Al!

The swap was fairly straightforward just requiring the transmission cross member to be modified as the Turbo 700 sits slightly back more. Some fiddling around with the kick down cable to hook up to the current accelerator cable was also required. The transmission came with a Lokar dipstick and kickdown cable. Eventually I’ll be replacing the current accelerator gear with a lokar one as I’m keen to put in a Lokar Midnight series accelerator pedal.

I’ve just sent the tailshaft to be shortened (Knox Driveshaft Services 9758 4015) and waiting on my shifter to arrive. I’ve ordered a 8 inch floor mount Lokar shifter, again in the black (the new Midnight Series).

Forgot my camera when were doing this but will post some pictures when we fit the tailshaft.

Al’s 57 Chev for Sale

57 Chev for Sale

Price: $64,000 (Australian Dollars) NOW SOLD

My good mate Alan is selling his 57 Chev Bel Air Sports Coupe. The car is a very tidy example of the popular 2 door coupes, and has been updated to be a daily driver with comforts including power steering and 4 speed auto (Turbo 700).

He recently purchased a very nice 57 Nomad which means now the coupe has to go.

Alan is pretty handy with the tools and has down a lot of tidying up and improvements to the car to make it a reliable and safe cruiser. The car is driven regularly and fully road registered.

Driveline Specs
350 engine with 4 bolt mains, reckon putting out about 350hp at the flywheel
Edelbrock RPM Hi Rise Manifold and carby
Block huggers with twin exhaust
Re-built Turbo 700
Diff is a 10 bolt salisbury

Original Bel Air interior. New seat trim kit put in.
2 speed wiper motor conversion concealed under dashboard
Speedo converted to klm’s
Original Bel Air steering wheel reduced to 14inch diameter
Lokar pedals
Central locking and Alarm with immobiliser

Paint: Matador Red
Wheels: 15*7 front. 15*8 rear
Rubber: BF Goodrich white walls 215 front, 255 rear

Suspension and Steering
2 inch drop spindles with Pedders Sports shockers
Front end sway bar
Power Steering – new 605 box

Front discs, Rear Drums
Polished booster and master cylinder

Other bits
110 litre stainless steel fuel tank
Space saver spare under boot floor


Third brake light, 3 point retractable seatbelts for 5 people, middle front is lap sash.
Indicator lights have been moved to reverse light position (originally the brake lights were the indicators)

Price: $64,000 (Australian Dollars) NOW SOLD

A real blog for me!

I first started the Classic Garage website in early 2002 to document the restoration of a old Vespa I bought. I also had a HT Premier at the time that I’d owned for about 10 years which I’d also done a lot of work to. Not many blogs were around at this time, especially about classic cars.

I haven’t updated for a while for a couple of reasons – running a business, young kids, hassle of updating because the software I was using. The site was originally handcoded in HTML/CSS but I switched over to City Desk a year or two later as I’m an avid reader of Joel on Software since about 2001. I also switched to a Mac about 1.5 years ago so running City Desk on Windows was a pain, hence the infrequent updates.

Well here’s to a new start using WordPress, some new articles on the Chev and me ranting about other things that I’m into.