Jim is a man of few words. The Body Palace in Huntington Beach finished the body in Boyd Red then buffed out and reinstalled all the original chrome trim.
Santa Ana Speed (Santa Ana, California) cleaned up the holes with a 0.030-inch overbore, balanced the block and rotating assembly, and sunk ARP studs in the deck. The short-block was then assembled with Speed-Pro 10.5:1 pistons and rings, pinned to the stock 427 connecting rods, and put to bed with the stock forged crankshaft in the 2-bolt main bearing cylinder case. Santa Ana finished the short-block with a complete Comp Cams hydraulic-lifter valvetrain system: 224/230 degrees duration at 0.050, 0.515/0.521 inch lift, valvesprings, 3/8-inch pushrods, guideplates, and timing chain. They paired the stock 5-quart oil pan with a Melling oil pump and sealed the bottom end. Jim capped the block with the stock (but pocket-ported) oval-port cylinder heads assembled by Santa Ana with 2.19/1.72 valves and Comp Pro Magnum roller rocker arms. A worked-over Edelbrock 750-cfm carb is matched to an Edelbrock RPM intake manifold. An MSD Pro Billet HEI ignition system provides 20 degrees of timing at idle and 38 degrees full out. Those heat-coated Hedman headers measure 1 3/4 inches at the primary pipes. The big-block, notorious for operating hot, runs temperate due to a Mattson radiator sporting twin thermostatically controlled fans. A Centerforce clutch assembly passes torque to the M20 wide-ratio four-speed, 1350-series U-joints, and a 3.31:1-geared 12-bolt. "I have two other 12-bolts built by JS Gear in Huntington Beach fitted with 3.73 and 4.11 gears. I swap them in and out depending on my mood," says Jimbo.
The frame features a 115-inch wheelbase and is augmented by Hotchkis components. In the rear, lowering coils, a 1-inch antisway bar, and control arms (the upper ones adjustable) cohabit with Edelbrock shock absorbers. Baer Track 12-inch discs replace the old drum brakes. Up front, Hotchkis coils are paired with Edelbrock shocks and a 1 3/8-inch antisway bar. Jim's Chevelle acquired a quicker directional reaction via a '74 Trans Am steering box.
Hoops & Rubber
While Jim could have easily blown the budget right here with more than he really needed, he propped moderately priced 17x8 Intro wheels with moderately priced sticky 245/45 and 255/50 Kumho rubber. Braking is by a Baer Track system posing 13-inch discs on the stock spindles and a 12-inch disc conversion at the rear.
It's 1966 all over again, only better. The only deviations from stock are the Auto Meter tachometer on the end of that custom mount, Auto Meter ancillaries, a Hurst Competition Plus shifter, and the spiffy Grant steering wheel. Fiber Technology in Huntington Beach sheathed the seats in stock vinyl.