Because I watched the car roll in, and knowing six-speeds are relatively uncommon, my next question was almost superfluous.
"So what's in it now?"
"Oh, Blake had a spare six-speed at his shop. We spent last night putting it back together," as if that was what normal people do on a Sunday evening with a couple of friends and the local pizza guy on speed dial. "Yeah, I gotta be careful with this one, though. It's a stock box, so I can't lean on it. There aren't anymore spares!"
Then the stories started. "We had to limp it back to Blake's shop because we only had Fourth gear. We musta ran about a dozen stoplights because we couldn't stop. This little motor will pull right down to 1,000 rpm with the fuel injection. It's cool."
I'm hooked. Chad beats on his Nova like its last appearance was on Grand Theft Auto, his buddies all like to thrash, and we learned later that it's run 10.16 at 141 mph. Best of all, Chad's not afraid to pass along the credit. Hats off to Blake Hughes for making all the TIG welds and imagineering happen. David Veldeman, Chris Huels, and Jerry Durty were also big contributors, but Chad says he couldn't have built this car without Blake's 417 Motorsports. Friends and fast cars-you don't need much more than that.
Who: Chad Moskrey
What: '67 Chevy II
Where: Green Bay, Wisconsin, where the cheeseheads live-but by now he's moved back to Des Moines.
This is by far the coolest part of this whole car. Blake Hughes owns 417 Motorsports in Springfield, Missouri, and he built the 6.0L iron block 408ci stroker motor starting with a 4.00-inch stroke Callies forged-steel crank, Compstar rods, and a set of Wiseco blower pistons. The Cam Motion hydraulic roller cam is not worth detailing only because the engine idles almost like a stocker at 850 rpm. The heads are a better story because Blake started with a set of LS6 castings that were then ported but retain the stock 2.00/1.55-inch sizes. ARP head studs and GM MLS (multilayer steel) gaskets conspire to keep the heads in place-a wise move when the plan revolves around twisting up a pair of Precision 64mm turbochargers to 20 psi. There's also a custom-fabricated 417 Motorsports intercooler with a core designed to chill 1,200 hp. A FAST 72mm throttle body is mounted to a 417 elbow that adapts to an Edelbrock Victor Jr. LS1 EFI manifold. The whole affair is controlled by a GM computer and tuned using Chris Huels' expertise with HP Tuner software in speed density mode. Chad reports that once it was tuned, the throttle response and overall part-throttle performance was excellent. An Aero-motive A1000 electric in-line pump delivers the fuel to Precision 96 lb/hr injectors. Blake also built the custom 13/4-inch headers that feed to a pair of 3 1/2-inch electric cutouts so Chad can get noisy when he feels like it. Chad also uses a twin-12-inch Spal electric fan assembly along with an Optima battery that ensures everything remains cool.
With four-digit power, Chad knew he needed a trans that wouldn't fold under pressure. TIC Performance delivered a Viper-spec T56 trans and Chad bolted it up to a Quick Time bellhousing using a Spec 11-inch flywheel and twin-disc clutch and pressure-plate assembly. The problem with the trans on our photo day turned out not to be catastrophic, and TIC quickly rebuilt it.
Despite the massive power numbers this Nova can generate, it all funnels through an externally stock 12-bolt rearend housing using a set of 3.42:1 Motive gears and Moser 30-spline axles that eliminate the whole C-clip idea and add a sense of reliability.