Body Mods - Dave's 1953 Chevy

Here is my pride and joy when I first brought her home.

When I went to pick it up it had been sitting in the field so long that the car was starting to sink into the earth.  I had to put my SUV into 4-wheel drive to get it out of the hole.  I brought along an air tank and added air to all the tires... amazing they all held air!!  It was a scary trip as I flat towed it all the way home behind my 1995 Ford Explorer (That is the last time it will ever be behind a FORD!).

The main problem was the Chevy weighs a lot more than the Ford, and the whole mess went whatever direction the Chevy wanted to go.  But I kept it under 40 and I finally made it home in one piece!!!

The body overall was in great shape, but there was some rust in the usual places (i.e., Drivers side floor board, Both rear lower fender areas, the Front Body mounts and the inner door jambs)

Here is the Passenger side Lower wheel well being repaired. I ordered the Parts from The National Chevy Assoc. I have ordered quite a few items from these people and they have always been fast and courteous.

Here is the Passenger side after some Body work (just a little grinding and some primer to prevent rusting). I also repaired a small hole in the front of the wheel well as well as removed the door handle and filled in the holes. I'll be using a remote door switch so I don't need the handles anymore.

floor

The Drivers side Floor was pretty rusted out so I ordered a new Pan from The National Chevy Association. The new Pan perfect and looks just like the original (which really isn't that big a deal because its just going to be covered up with carpet).  Remember This Car is going to be driven daily and to every show I can make!!

The floor boards have been all fixed are are now painted with several coats of POR-15.  The Stainless cover leads to the new dual master cylinder.  (The original style used a round access cover to add fluid to the original master cylinder.  The new panel allows for easier access.


rust

As I said above, the Front Body mounts were badly rusted out on my Chevy. I called all around the local area but nobody had a Chevy with good front body mounts.  I called the National Chevy Association and they said they could get me a pair (both of mine are bad), but after waiting for 3 months, they sent me back my money as every Chevy they had in stock was also rusted in the front mounts.  I finally called a Junkyard in Mesa Arizona called Desert Valley Auto Parts (DVAP), (I have ordered parts from them before and they aren't cheap, but the parts are always in great shape, and as a last resort they have always come through!!).

So far I have the Passenger Side completed.  I cut out the old rust one and then cut out the matching area with the new pieces I got from DVAP.  I clamped the new piece in position and then Mig-welded into place.  It was a pretty easy process, I just took my time to ensure I had an exact fit.  I think it came out great, and next I'll do the drivers side which is not as bad as the Passengers side was.  (But as you can see by the Photo, its still pretty bad).

I have totally replaced both sides of the body mounts along with POR-15'ing them as well as most of the frame.  I have installed Stainless Steel inserts on the firewall.  I first welded up all the holes in the dash and then added several coats of POR-15 and then I cut the Stainless pieces to match.  They are held in place by stainless rivets.  I think it looks great and will really offset the yellow engine!

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Copyright May 2011 Eugene Blanchard