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1957 Chevy Bel Air sport sedan (Bertha)


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More work done today.  Door primed with high build primer and blocked out again, replacement quarter panel gone over and any little prang tapped out and back side cleaned, and wheels sanded again for another coat and center caps checked for fit.  
 

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Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
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Looking better now.  Back half cleaned and a coat of rust converter curing overnight.  Will start again tomorrow and finish cleaning, epoxy prime, and RaptorLine.  Then weld on the quarter in very small spot welds.  
 

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More work done.  I’m still fighting the quarter panel, I messed up the cut so I have to do some splicing. This is the last rust repair I have in a door to fix, will get it cut out and patched tomorrow. Gauge cluster mocked up and trying to decide which side I want the 2” tach.  
 


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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I'm impressed with your determination and your workmanship!

 

My '68 wagon has that style wheel (available with the disc brake option) and I also have original 67/68 police hubcaps that is also the same style as yours.

Edited by mrspeedyt (see edit history)
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  • 1 month later...
On 4/1/2022 at 7:27 AM, mrspeedyt said:

I'm impressed with your determination and your workmanship!

 

My '68 wagon has that style wheel (available with the disc brake option) and I also have original 67/68 police hubcaps that is also the same style as yours.

Thanks!  Been working 6-7 day weeks lately so very little progress but now I’m somewhat out for summer (teacher) and only teach 2 classes over the summer.  This means I will get far more done.  
 

  1. Finished up the trans linkage and pan (Lokar cable shift)
  2. Fuel lines finished
  3. Tires, mounted, balanced, and cleaned
  4. Firewall finished
  5. Some of the exhaust rehung. 
     
  6. And last but not least, pressure washed the front porch.  Yeah….   Not car related but Honey Do’ed so it had to be done.   Gotta love the Southeast, everything molds, rusts, and mildews here in a matter of minutes. 

 

Some photos from today. 
 

Tires finally mounted on wheels. 
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My spare tire, it’s a 165/80R15 on a 15x4 wheel.  Fits perfectly in the original spare location.  
 

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Exhaust almost finished, transmission done except torque converter cover, and wheels/tires mounted to check fit. 
 

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Back down on all 4 and checking that everything fits with the suspension loaded.  Put the steering wheel in, first time she has been truly steerable in 15 years. 
 

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Testing out the interior and deciding on the dash color. I think I’ve settled on the Inca Silver for dash.  The gauge cluster is Inca Silver, I think I will go with the silver entirely inside instead of a black dash.  It will have black carpet, and black carpet on the bottom of the door panels, but that is all the black in the car.  
 

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More work done.  Less than I wanted, but it was a lazy day. Brake bracket in semi gloss, other parts in semi gloss, grille bar in semi gloss, and fender in final primer ready to block sand. Another coat of primer on roof/quarter area. 
 

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A bunch of stuff done today, then interrupted by dislocating my forearm apparently.  Radiator brace all finished up, hood sanded and script and Vee holes drilled, and a coat of epoxy primer. 
 

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Finally found some photos from 2007-08 of when I picked up the 57.  You can see the level of rustiness and crustiness it had.  
 

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I’m starting out the wire routing, it’s an American Auto Wire Classic Update Harness.   After I RaptorLine the inside floors and finish the rust repair in the doglegs, I will start running wires front to back.  
 

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50 minutes ago, Andy J said:

Man,you've come a long way! It's really looking good.I love seeing projects like this taking shape.

Thanks!  It’s a 3 year project that’s taken 15 years. 😁

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Worked the knee dent out of the dash, seam sealed the seam of the floor to toeboard, and bedlinered the toeboard and around the perimeter of the floor.  
 

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Color and clear. Inca silver. Only one bit of dirt in the clear, no runs.  
 

 

Color coat
 

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Clear.  I had already shut off the power to the left side of the workshop before I remembered to take a photo. 
 

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Dash cut and buffed, the top turned out ok, it could have been better.  Some of the parts test fit including the front speaker, emergency brake, and heater controls. 
 

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Looks great! I'm really enjoying watching this project take shape. First car I ever bought was a '57 210 2 door sedan for $110.I drove it just like I bought it for a couple of years,then hopped it up with a very hot 327,4 speed,and 4.56 positraction rear end.Sold it to buy a very nice '55 Bel Air 2 door HT for $175.Don't have neither today.I'm still sick about it.

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Once you get the Trifives in your blood, it’s hard if not impossible to get rid of it.   Although mine does take many donations of my own blood. Lol!  

Some of the work from today.  
 

Holes drilled and fender louvers fitted. 
 

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Headlight buckets and trim fitted. 
 

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More bites of the elephant done. I sent photos to my wife (she is on vacation with her sister and nephew in Maine) and here is her response…. I have never been so offended by something I 100% agree with..  hahaha!  As I said, it’s a 3 year project that has taken me 15 years.  
 

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More stuff in place to check alignment and measurements. Also the new bumpers arrived and I checked them over for any dings or rust, they look good!  
 

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I have been looking for screws like that for my '51 Pontiac! All the Phillips heads are all buggered up.I wonder if they will work on my Pontiac?

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Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, Andy J said:

I have been looking for screws like that for my '51 Pontiac! All the Phillips heads are all buggered up.I wonder if they will work on my Pontiac?

As long as the thread is 5/16 fine thread, you’re good.  I’ve had several over at TriFive comment that it would make more sense to get them in stainless to prevent rust, and that does make some sense.  You can also find them on McMaster.com. 
 

Stainless version. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00X2V7M0K?ref_=cm_sw_r_cp_ud_dp_MZ2ZVZZJGM0ZD12GSD51

Edited by AURktman
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Fighting the electrical spaghetti monster now.  Just getting the dash and engine compartment done, will finish the rest after I finish the bodywork. I want to get the car to where it runs and moves under its own power so it will make moving it in and out of the workshop easier.  I’m getting a bit old and broken to keep pushing it in and out manually.  And I’m only 48. 
 

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Posted (edited)

Getting wiring installed and dash finished up.  I will get her running next week then cocoon the dash forward and finish the roof and back half. 
 

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Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
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Posted (edited)

Everything fitted, trim and switches in permanently. Cluster will come back out to get all the wires connected. Still have to add the trim edging around the cluster.  Then install glove box and door and ashtray and it’s finished. 
 

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Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
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Posted (edited)

I know most won’t see this as a milestone, but I picked up a battery for the 57 because I needed it.  After 15 years I finally needed a battery.   I would post more photos but I worked on electrical all day.  Although I made a bunch of progress, you can’t tell because it “looks” the same as it did yesterday. Ha!  
 

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Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
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