Sunday, August 7, 2016

New Power in the House

As a friend said the other day, "Wow! That was fast." Indeed. I got very lucky and found a great replacement engine almost immediately, which is now sitting next to the truck waiting to be installed. Hopefully we'll at least have 'er in place before I head out to Ohio for next weekend's family reunion. It's a Chevy 235, just like the engine that's coming out, only it's a few years older, from a car, is in much better shape and has its own great story.

Upon reading about my engine trouble in a Facebook group for '47-'54 GM truck enthusiasts, my new friend Matt commented about having a good 235 for sale. We started messaging back and forth, spoke on the phone in the middle of the week, and today I made the hour drive and purchased the motor.

The car is a 1953 Chevy Bel Air that has spent most of its life to this point in New York City, including many years just sitting in a parking garage. After the owner passed away, a maintenance man did the research and tracked down the family. They live far away and were not interested in the car, so they just signed it over to him. He got it running and was trying to sell it when he saw Matt's Ford Ranger pickup and loved it. They ended up doing a straight swap, Matt drove the car for a bit and it ran great, but he decided he wanted more power and pulled the 235 in favor of a V8, which he is currently building.

I'm not sure of the exact elapsed time, but this is pretty much where I come in. In the midst of our messaging, Matt says the odometer reads 110030, then quickly adds that "The 0 is the tenths, so 11,003 miles."

Yup. A 1953 engine with 11,000 miles on it, at a very fair price, and some nice little extras thrown in. The decision was easy. We'll have to swap in my bell housing, flywheel and clutch, but thankfully Chevy made the parts interchangeable, so it should be a fairly smooth swap-in. Looking forward to that first fire-up.

Donor '53 Bel Air in the parking garage where it sat for years

Bel Air motor came home with me this morning

Sitting next to the truck waiting to supply the power

And now we're that much closer.

Thanks for stopping. See y'all down the road!


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