Aside from what we mentioned above, The Smoke used all the original panels with Mark adding custom work wherever necessary. He built a smooth, uncluttered radiator close-out panel, smoothed the inner fender panels, and extended the control arm openings to close that gap to the engine bay. The firewall was also smoothed and modified to accept the Wilwood triple-master cylinder assembly. In order for the fat T56 to fit the body, Mark simply constructed a new tunnel. He eliminated holes that went nowhere, relocated the factory-style wiper motor underneath the driver-side fender, smoothed the bottom side of the hood, filled the rocker panel trim holes, and shaved the bottom of the inner fenders smooth. Elsewhere, he finessed the rocker panel pinch welds, constructed the 3-inch-wider wheelstubs to retain the factory appearance, and made the bottom of the deck run crisp and clean. Brother Rich rubbed the carcass and painted the lower body PPG Black and custom-mixed Gold for the surfaces above the fender line.
The plain yet intricate juxtaposing of little-used colors, craftsmanship, customizing, and imagination entailed in the engine compartment tattoos your frontal lobe and is something you'll not soon forget. For this exclusive envelope, Mark based the 498 on a forged Scat crankshaft and connecting rods swinging KB forged pistons with a 10.2:1 compression ratio. Camshaft is an Edelbrock hydraulic flat tappet (specs unknown) and is accompanied by all the Edelbrock valvetrain goodies. The oil pan, pickup, and pump are stock. Mark built the top of the engine with out-of-the-box Edelbrock square-port heads, Performer RPM intake manifold, and an Edelbrock 800-cfm carburetor. He put many, many hours in the aluminum cowl air intake system. His has a single cowl duct while Smokey's had one on either side of the engine. Though they have a handmade vibe, the rocker covers are stock items. MSD components throw a vibrant spark in the cylinders, the contents of which are extracted by custom 17/8-inch primaries made by Mark and wrapped in Heat Shield. Rich got busy with the mandrel-bent 3-inch exhaust that he bent tight to the undercarriage, over the axle, and terminate at the back of the car. To accommodate the frame kick-in for the wheeltubs, he spent lots of time on this part of the build. Torque is transferred to the T56 by a McLeod twin-disc clutch assembly. Grunt unravels down a custom prop shaft and ends at the 4.11:1 gears on the Posi-Traction carrier.