FEATURE CAR
September 2020
Rick Crawford
1955 Chevrolet Bel Air Sedan




 

My love affair with the 55 Chevrolet Bel Air started in 1955 when I was just 8 years old.  My Dad and I went to the new car showing at the local Chevy dealer in my home town.  Man, I was blown away seeing a new convertible, a hardtop and a sedan. Over the years my love for the car was put on hold.  You know how it is with military, school, marriage and a career or two.  I finally got too the place in my life where I was beginning to look for a 55.  After looking for several years, I ran across the one I have now.  It was born in June of 1955 in Atlanta, Georgia and spent most of its life in Florida.  It had been restored about 9 years before I got it but had some issues but I was willing to accept those and address them.  The paint needed to be polished out, brakes needed to be up dated and the engine set up was basically what I wanted but I had to make some changes .... that were needed of course!  Some things you can do yourself but when it comes to performance engine setups, I pay the pros to do those things.  I'm happy with the car but I still have some issues that are going to have to be addressed.  Big blocks run hot and in Texas they run doubly hot so my next phase will be cooling issues.  It is a 468 cubic inch gen IV pushing 600hp, Turbo 350 with a B&M shift kit, 850 Holley with an aluminum intake (air gap).  The heads are aluminum heads with a Comp Cams hydraulic roller camshaft.  The block was decked and planed locally and all machine work was done locally.  Headers are stainless steel custom built by R&D Engineering in Bend, Oregon.  I added Posi Traction with a 300 gear for cruising with 4 wheel power disc brakes to stop it and a Ididit steering column through rack and pinion power steering guides it with the air conditioning blowing.  Custom Dolphin gauges keeps all the vitals for me.  A custom aluminum drive shaft with 2 inch lowering blocks are in front.  The people my wife Carol and I have met since we made the purchase have been just the greatest!


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