One look down the flanks of this car and you know that the techs at Hot Rod & Custom Stuff wore out a sanding block or two and maybe their stock of expletives. Clean seems to have been the operative word during that time and to that end, HR&CS removed the door handles, side-view mirrors, driprails, and body markings. The firewall also underwent the shaving and smoothing act, leaving it absolutely naked . . . and quite remarkable. To receive the 305s without worry, Hot Rods laid in DSE mini-tubs. The whole deal came together very well under the coats of PPG custom-mix Driftwood Metallic.

Wheels & Brakes

Monster stoppers repose not so nonchalantly behind those dark-hued, cranky-looking nodulars. Wilwood gave their all, 14-inch rotors pinched by six-piston calipers. Master cylinder, booster, and so on, were relocated beneath the dashboard proper. Boze Friction wheels are 18x8 and 20x11 and capture Michelin Pilot Sports in sizes 225/35 and 305/25.


Sun sizzles and sears down near the border so it’s shady glen in here. Somber interior falls hard for lighter hued exterior and the whole thing works visually and technically. Ryan faces a MOMO steering wheel and a Covan dashboard stocked with Auto Meter carbon-fiber gauges. Ryan’s Chevelle departs from the norm even more with its Isis modular wiring system—a master cell is connected to various power cells (front, middle, and rear) and all are connected by a single, small-diameter (maybe 1/2 inch) bundle. For example, taillights connect to the rear power cell with a few inches (not several feet) of wiring and the wiring can be of lighter duty. Vintage Air chases the sun demon away pretty well and what it doesn’t will fade inexorably into the audio wave. A Kenwood KDL-X494 head rams through a pair of Kicker 650.4 amp and Boston Acoustic speakers. Armando’s Custom Upholstery in San Jacinto, California, is responsible for all the work, including supple leather, the flowing custom-built center console, and the Glide Engineering seats.


Mr. O’Tool has a big ace up his sleeve. Rather than wrangle and reconfigure a 40-year-old system that was inadequate when new, Hot Rods infused the Chevelle with a sophisticated Roadster Shop (Mundelein, Illinois) Fast Track chassis. In this sphere, it is the mother of all rails, folks, and one that can even be augmented by an independent rear suspension system. Ryan’s Chevelle retains a live axle, however. The comprehensive Fast Track system spiderwebs the undercarriage together and is therefore high on rigidity, adjustability, and accessibility. Further, it tucks stealthily up under the rocker panels. The space between the front frame stubs accommodates a Thunderbird power steering rack. Based on C6 uprights and Z06 hubs, the tubular control arms provide revised steering geometry and low mass. The system incorporates double-adjustable coilover shock absorbers and a splined 11/4-inch diameter antisway bar. In the rear, a modified four-link setup works another set of AFCO coilovers. Note that the Roadster Shop’s structural boon has eliminated the need for a rollcage and a rear antisway bar. Now that’s using a hot rodding head. CHP