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WTF? (Where’s The Fun?) - June 2014

Nova Specialist

Who: Bill Oertel

What: '68 Nova SS

Where: Kansas City, KS

Why: In his email, Bill says he's owned more than 25 Novas over the years. "I wanted to build that very special last Nova," he says. A friend found this car for him, and it was less than 20 miles from his house. It was an original small-block, four-speed car with a 12-bolt rear. Wanting more power, he purchased a 383 and a TKO-600 transmission, which he and friend John Findley installed. He rebuilt the rear with an Eaton Detroit TrueTrac and added CalTracs traction bars. He upgraded the front suspension with Heidts tubular upper and lower A-arms and installed a quartet of Baer 13-inch brakes. The Butternut Yellow paint and black vinyl top are original to the car.

Alternative 55

Who: Tom Jones

What: '55 Chevrolet pickup

Why: Tom and friend Todd are building a cool drag truck. They're gathering the ingredients to assemble a 1,400hp twin-turbo LS engine, and the chassis was just NHRA-certified to 8.50s. This is going to be a cool build.

Pro Street Barn Find

Who: Michael Pisano

What: '57 Chevy

Where: Hamilton, NJ

Why: Michael's father used to buy hay and straw from this car's previous owner, and he remembers first seeing it stashed in that guy's barn when he was 15. Looking for a car after turning 20, Michael went back to the barn and was pleased to find it still there. It had been an NHRA Stock racer that the owner parked after the 283 scattered. Michael paid him the $2,000 asking price (this was in 1978—it would cost 10 times that now!). He and a friend tubbed it in 1978. He dropped in a 454/TH400 combination, complete with dual Weber sidedraft carburetors. In 1987 he stripped the car to bare steel and had it painted in its current blue finish by Mark's Yardville Auto Body.

V8 Volvo

Who: Michael Yount

What: '82 Volvo 242

Where: Charlotte, NC

Why: In the April '14 issue, staffer John McGann confessed a secret desire to own a V8-powered 240 series Volvo, and it didn't take long for a reader to reply with pictures. Michael sent pictures of his 242 and made John drool over the spec sheet. It is a '92 model year Ford 302 with AFR cylinder heads, Explorer intake manifold (the junkyard version of the GT40 intake), a custom-ground Buddy Rawls cam, a Tremec T-5 five-speed, and a Ford 8.8-inch rear with a TrueTrac and 3.55:1 gears. Koni sport shocks and Eibach springs account for the killer stance, and the Voxx wheels are shod with Continental tires. At just 2,980 pounds, Michael says the car is not only light but also has a near 50/50 weight distribution.

Go to School

Who: Jason Glennon

What: '01 Pontiac Firebird

Where: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Why: Jason is an instructor for the Motive Power Program at Algonquin College in Ottawa and sent some pictures of some of the fun projects he and his students are working on. They built this Firebird as a race car, stripping it down to a mere 2,900 pounds and building the LS1 engine up with a Comp cam and long-tube headers, among other things. They also added tubular control arms, an adjustable torque arm, and a Panhard bar. "All this was done by the students with no prior experience," he says. Next on the list is an S-10 powered by a twin-turbo 4.8L. Kinda makes you want to go back to school.

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