Quite an interior upgrade...
Quite an interior upgrade from the lowly Biscayne trim package! Don Carlile had Gabe's Auto Upholstery create custom bucket seats, stitching them up in burgundy-colored leather. The dash is a '59 unit (outfitted with Auto Meter gauges) and contains controls for the Hot Rod Air system. A 14-inch American Retro steering wheel bolts to an ididit column.
Most of the time ownership of a hot rod is fueled by desire-the desire to own something that expresses your individuality. The problem is a lot of folks think the same thing is cool, which means, more often than not, you'll find an abundance of them (think red '32 Ford roadsters).
What you really want is what no one else has, which is the approach Don Carlile went with after deciding he'd like another nice car (he still owns the '39 Ford convertible that was on the cover of the May '03 issue of STREET RODDER), so he started looking for a '62 Chevy.
But while it seems everyone wants an Impala, or at least a Bel Air, it was the low-level Biscayne that caught Don's eye (partially due to the fact not a lot of people liked them). When it came to finding a stocker to purchase, Don, who lives in Carmel Valley on California's central coast, found a likely candidate in Ohio. An auto dealer had it, and it was already equipped with a 350, 14-inch redline tires, and stock hubcaps. Don bought the car and then drove it around for six months while he figured out what he was going to do with it.
Once his ducks were in a row, Don, with the help of Pete DeMaria, disassembled the car, going as far as removing the body from the chassis. The frame got powdercoated at Cross Link's in Salinas, California, and then DeMaria got to work reassembling the chassis with new parts. A pair of Heidts 2-inch drop spindles went in, as did a Posi rear end (3.08:1) with QA1 coilover shocks and a Hotchkis Sport Suspension rear sway bar. A similar shock and sway bar combo went in up front, and each corner got 14-inch Baer disc brakes. Budnik wheels, 19x8.5 and 19x10, were wrapped with Yokohama 225/40ZR-19 and 245/45ZR-19 rubber. Other items, such as replacing the stock gas tank with a similar-sized stainless steel unit, were also installed at this time.
The drivetrain went in next: a 6.0L LS2 backed to a 4L60 transmission. The engine is topped with an intercooled Magnacharger unit that works with the EFI system and breathes through a K&N filter and a cold-air intake fabbed at Barry White's Street Rod Repair Company (SRRC) in Corona, California. A Hot Rod Air water pump and a Mattson crossflow radiator and fan help keep the fluids cool while a set of Bassett headers and MagnaFlow mufflers help draw the hot exhaust away from the engine. An oil pan from an '02 Camaro, valve covers from Katek (with the car's "Hurricayne" name added), and a front pulley system from Vintage Air round out the engine parts list.
Once the body was reattached to the chassis and now a roller, Don delivered it to SRRC for some body and paintwork. SRRC turned the major metalwork over to Marcel's Custom Metal (also in Corona) where Marcel and his sons, Marc and Luc, went to task by adding a '59 dash and created in the new, smooth cowl section void of any air ducts. Marcel's also created new inner fender panels and hand-carved strips of brass to make the base for new, thinner chrome side trim.
Both the front and rear bumpers...
Both the front and rear bumpers are one-piece and void of any bolt heads, while the design of the grille-a one-off unit designed at SRRC and laser cut and fit to the stock opening-is copied in miniature inside the front bumper.
Back at Barry's, the team designed a one-off grille, which had its pieces laser cut to perfection. Another mini grille was also created for the hole that was cut into the bumper, right where the front license plate would normally go. And speaking of bumpers, both front and rear were shaved of mounting bolt heads and re-chromed. SRRC also removed the wind wings and added electric door locks from Nu-Relics. From that point the Biscayne was rolled around the corner to Tony Correia's Speed Shop Custom Paint where it received several coats of a custom-mixed DuPont paint.
Coming down to the finish line all that was left was the interior but, in a car as big as a Biscayne, that's a lot of material! Gabe's Street Rods Custom Interiors in San Bernardino, California, got the call and added burgundy cut pile carpet before installing custom bucket seats stitched up with burgundy-colored leather. Gabe's also created the mini emblems added to each seatback.