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1967 Chevy Nova Wagons - Wagons Ho

Relatively Rare, These Novas Represent the Birth of a New Network

Photography by Steve Campbell

Tech Notes
What: '67 Chevrolet Nova wagon

Owner: Bob Santana, a heavy-equipment operator for Arcadia Water Company

Hometown: La Verne, California, nestled against the base of the San Gabriel Mountains

Engine: The 350 V-8 was originally a fuel-injected motor that was pulled from a wrecked Chevy. Bob bought the car from Enrique Cruz of A&A Auto Body in Santa Ana, California, who had swapped in the 350 after rebuilding it. Cruz retained all of the stock innards but polished many of the exterior pieces as the small-block went together.

Induction: The engine was originally fuel injected, but Cruz went traditional when he rebuilt the V-8. The new system features a polished-aluminum intake and an auto-choke, 600-cfm, four-barrel carburetor. Both are Edelbrock products.

Exhaust: The headers have been coated with ceramic and feed 1 1/2-inch tubing to dual, turbo-style mufflers.

Drivetrain: The 700-R4 overdrive automatic combined with the swapped-in V-8 necessitated a shortened driveshaft that turns 3.36:1 gears in the open differential. The tranny was upgraded with a mild shift kit, and the original trans crossmember was replaced.

Suspension: A set of 1 1/2-inch front lowering springs (which take two coils out of the stock wraps) works with rear 2-inch-drop blocks and the stock monoleaves to set the wagon's slightly raked stance. The front shocks are Doetsch, and Monroes control the rear. Bob retained the stock front sway bar, and all of the frontend bushings were replaced.

Wheels/tires: Bob likes the classic look of the American Racing vintage Torq-Thrust D wheels, which were polished by Mag Masters in Santa Ana, California. All four were originally 15x7s, but Bob had the front pair narrowed by Eric Vaughn of Vaughn Machine Works in Monrovia, California, to 5 1/2 inches, and they carry All Climate 195/65R15 tires. The unmodified rears are clad in 225/70R15 BFGoodrich T/A Radials, and the stock drum brakes still reside at all four corners.

Body: Bob is amazed at how straight the Nova is. When he bought the car, Cruz told him that it originally came from New Mexico with minimal rust. Bob refurbished the front grille, striping and repainting all of the inserts. The original white body received a new coat of PPG Silver Blue Metallic, and Cruz striped and polished all the body moldings. Bob obtained many of the moldings and small parts at Modern Performance Classics Nova in Orange, California.

Interior: The cabin of the wagon looks very much as it might have when the car was new more than three decades ago. Bob refinished the factory, two-spoke steering wheel, and the carpet, headliner and seats were redone in showroom fashion by Salvadore Reyes of Reyes Upholstery in Huntington Beach, California. The 400-watt stereo system is made up of Pioneer components, but Bob hopes to upgrade the speaker enclosures in the rear storage area.

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