My Nova

page 23


April - October 2015

Since the last update I was able to sell more parts of the '64 which helped to offset the costs and got me some more space in the garage. After assessing the condition of the sheet metal I decided to continue with the '64 body and use the '62 for patch parts since it requires less bodywork, at least less bodywork in visible areas. This meant I needed to clean the underside and that is one of the most terrible jobs on the car. When I did the '62 lying on my back under the car I swore I would never do that again......and now I was at the same point again. I decided to buy a rotisserie to make my life easier and it did, this is one of these tools you wish you had years before! It's a joy to be able to just stand next to the underside of the body for scraping off the coatings and not having all the debris fall all over you. Still it is a lot of work but not as bad as it was before. The rotisserie I bought is adjustable and has spindles and hydraulic jacks that allow to you to pick up the body at relative low heights and fine tune the center of gravity for rotating it. I had to made brackets to attach the rotisserie to the body, I got some angle iron and after some cutting, drilling and grinding I was able to mount the body and lift it off the ground. My garage is not very big and to be able to rotate the body inside the garage I needed to modify the garage door. I made some supports for the door rails out of steel strip and then cut out the original support from between the new brackets and now I can (just) rotate it inside the garage. This allowed me to work inside the garage too but now with the body hanging in the rotisserie I can easily roll it in and out the garage by myself so that also makes life easier.

Now I started more disassembly and the hours and hours scraping off the under body coating, a lot of work but very nice to see the result. Now end of August the body is completely stripped form everything that unbolts, the underside is clean and I will start making sheet metal repairs which will be a bit of a challenge but I'm keeping the end result in mind and will just take it step by step. The big repairs will be the cowl area, rear wheel tubs, the rear of the trunk and the trunk drop offs/rear lower quarter. There are also lots of smaller patches throughout the floor, unused holes and some minor pieces that have rust damage. The rocker panel lip had a lot of areas where it was bent, probably caused by jacking up the car. This is a simple fix but will make a big difference in appearance so I straightened these parts. I did get help from my son Lars on a regular basis, I guess he wants the Nova done and out of the garage so we can start on a car for him. It is very nice to do things together and also the extra pair of hands do come in handy at times.

I cleaned up the dash pad, made some small repairs and re-covered it with black vinyl to match the rest of the interior.

By now it was time to cut up the 62 body....a lot of work but I wanted to cut out every piece I might be able to use to fix the 64. The leftovers went to the scrap yard, it felt a bit strange cutting up the body I've had for over 6 years but it was the sensible thing to do. It also gave me some space in the garage again.

I continued with disassembly of the doors, making the first small repairs on the floor and cleaning the floors on the inside. Mid October and after 13 years I finally have electric power in my garage!! So happy, this will make my life and working on the Nova a lot easier, I can now work when the weather is bad or when there is no daylight. Power also means I can start welding in repair pieces myself. I am pretty new to welding so my welds aren't pretty so the floors were a good place to start since the welds will be covered by seam sealer, underbody coating and carpet. The pieces are in solid but I will need to do a lot of practice before I will start on any visible parts.

Put the front seats in the car for a test fit so I can see where I need to make mounts. I like the way they look in there.

Now first my (by now) annual trip to the SEMA show in Las Vegas and when I get back I will need to do some work on the Camaro but I will continue on the Nova soon.

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You can reach me by e-mail at: camaro-rs@planet.nl