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1957 Chevy Bel Air sport sedan (Bertha)


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Well,  Bertha lives!!  I will need to change out those mufflers (maybe) next winter, they're a bit too loud (maybe... lol)

 

 

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I will complete the steering wheel/gearshift and brakes tomorrow and it should move around under her own power!  Transmission filled, cooling system all wrapped up, and had the rear wheels moving under power for the first time in 36 years. 
 

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Posted (edited)

Getting more done, the cooling system and wiring under the hood is finished.  Also connected up the tach and fuel gauge. 
 

 

 


 

I also swapped out the brake booster bracket for a straight bracket that is close to the firewall.  Much better fit overall.  
 

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Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
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She moved under her own power for the first time in 36 years!  I need to bleed the brakes better, but I will get her moved outside tomorrow evening and do a proper engine break-in.  I have to get the body the the point where the roof can get painted and glass installed.  
 

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More bites of the elephant done. Front fenders prepped and in sealer outside drying.  Will paint those first thing tomorrow morning.  I still have to bleed the brakes again, I had great brakes then none a day later. I attribute it to the fact that I hadn’t bled the rears and the fronts need bleeding again. But cooling system all finished (electric in front, mechanical behind) and she sat outside running through the RPMs to get broke in a bit.  I put her back on her chrome wheels. 


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Finished the front fenders and passenger front door.  They need a good wet sanding, but that will happen after the Nationals.  I just want to get the car there and home in one piece.  
 

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10 hours ago, Dan Cluley said:

Great color.  Is it going to be solid or two tone?

Thanks!  Two tone, white roof.   

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13 hours ago, avgwarhawk said:

Love the shade of blue. 

Thanks!  It’s roughly a 4:1 mix of VW Strato blue (1959) and Porsche Aetna blue.  I spoke to the woman that owns the paint company I order it through, I am sending her some spray out cards and a small bottle of the paint so she can match it.  It will get called “Bertha Blue” 

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1 hour ago, drhach said:

I'm curious why you didn't paint the body before installing the glass.

Roof is painted, that was the only area that I had to get to before installing glass, especially around the top windshield area.  I painted the area where the gasket sits so it won’t rust.  There is a LOT of bodywork still to do on the drivers side.  

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Passenger doors somewhat aligned properly, latches and strikers installed, everything hooked up and handles installed.  Lock works too. So many firsts on this car in the last month!  It’s languished over 15 years getting bits and pieces done.  
 

 

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16 hours ago, AURktman said:

Roof is painted, that was the only area that I had to get to before installing glass, especially around the top windshield area.  I painted the area where the gasket sits so it won’t rust.  There is a LOT of bodywork still to do on the drivers side.  

Makes sense. I figured you had it thought out, i just wasn't clear from the pictures. Keep up the good work she's looking great.

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9 hours ago, Dan Cluley said:

I've done exactly one set of seats, so I'm not really an expert, but my gut feeling is that maybe you need thicker padding?

 

Does that use molded foam, or is it built up with batting?

I have 2 layers of 1 inch foam, I just need to redo the hog rings so it doesn’t look like a bad boob job.  I will also run some thin padding around the front to fill in any gaps.  

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Headed to Bowling Green, KY tomorrow morning for the Nationals.  I will be parked in the “Scratch, dent, and rust” section.  😁

 

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Pics from the show.  As always, it was a blast!  Put about a mile on her, it’s quite fitting her first mile is at the TriFive Nationals. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Photo from the official event photographer, I’m in love with it! 
 

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Now back to the work.  Instead of the rear drivers door that was on there, I will redo this one.  Everything north of the trim line is in great shape and dent/rust free.  I will form a new patch for this.   

 

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  • 1 month later...

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