Chevelle Technical Features

Why Don’t They Make That Part?

One of the most common questions in classic Chevy car circles is: “Why don’t they make this part for my car?” As a supplier and manufacturer to the aftermarket for many years, we will attempt to answer this question and shed some light on manufacturing parts for the aftermarket and classic car market.

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Tire Cleaning: 101

This may seem like a super simple little project, but believe me, when your tires have been coated in primer overspray, it’s not.

Our project Chevelle was in the shop undergoing bodywork, primer, more bodywork, more primer, some finessing bodywork, a little more primer…well, you get the idea. The car was moved around in the shop (a lot) over the course of the months, and quite often, our wheels and tires were the unlikely recipient of some nasty overspray, rubbing compound, etc.

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Cut To Fit Plug Wires

Making cut-to-fit spark plug wires

Time: Approximately 2 hours

Tools: wire cutters, crimping pliers, razor blade, Sharpie marker

What you’ll need: set of quality spark plug wires (boots and terminals included), white dielectric grease, wire socks (recommended), wire looms

Tip: When cutting and installing a new set of wires, mark each end at the boots with its designated cylinder number. This will serve as a great quick reference in the future.

Here’s what you’ll net: more reliable spark delivery to the plugs and a cleaner looking engine compartment: set of quality spark plug wires (boots and terminals included), white dielectric grease, wire socks (recommended), wire looms.

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Carburetor: Quick-Change Vacuum Springs

arburetor: Quick-Change Vacuum Springs

Time: approximately 30 minutes

Tools: small Phillips screwdriver

Here’s what you’ll need: Holley quick-change spring housing, vacuum secondary spring kit

Tip: During the test and tune process, keep track of which springs help or hinder your carburetor’s performance. They make it easy by color-coding the top of each spring.

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Installing Valve Cover Gaskets and Studs

nstalling Valve Cover Gaskets and Studs

Time: approximately 1 hour

Tools: a pair of 3/8” boxed wrenches, putty knife, deep-sockets and socket wrench

Tinware: valve cover gaskets, gasket placement glue, valve cover studs,

Tip: When replacing your valve cover gaskets, it’s a good time to think about other similar upgrades such as valve covers, breathers, or plug wire retainers.

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Timing Chain Removal and Replacement

Tools: standard socket set, standard wrenches, crankshaft socket, breaker bar

Tinware: new timing chain, new timing cover (optional), timing cover gasket, gasket sealer, oil pan gasket (optional)

Tip: Before getting started, check out the clearance between the oil pan and the crossmember to see if there’s enough room to remove the pan.

Performance gains: A new timing chain and sprockets will deliver consistent performance and reliability.

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Drum Brake Rebuild

Time: 3 hours approximately (per pair)

Tools: lug-wrench, flat-blade screwdriver, rubber mallet, needle-nose pliers, various specialty brake tools (recommended)

Cost: rebuild kits approximately $250 for 4 wheel drum brakes

Tinware: brake shoes, drum brake hardware kit, other items may be necessary depending on the condition of your existing parts

Tip: When rebuilding your brakes, only disassemble one side at a time. The other side will serve as an accurate point of reference when putting all of the pieces back together.

Performance gains: Better brakes! Periodically replacing your shoes and rebuilding the brake assemblies will drastically increase your chances of ever seeing old age.

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Installing New Weatherstripping

Time: approximately 30 minutes (for one part: eg. door, trunk, etc.)

Tools: putty knife, utility knife

Cost: price varies depending on seals or number of seals

Tinware: new weatherstripping, weatherstripping adhesive, weatherstrip remover (aerosol can).

Tip: If you happen to break or lose a plastic retainer during installation, try using 3M weatherstrip adhesive in its place. The glue is super tacky and forms a lasting, watertight seal.

Performance gains: a quiet, weatherproof interior and trunk

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Understanding And Installing Torque Converters

Time: 1-2 hours

Tools: standard socket set, standard wrenches, torque wrench

Applicable years: all

Cost: $200-300 (average for non-specialized units). Prices on ultra-high performance torque converters can run into the thousands of dollars, depending on application.

Tinware: torque converter, transmission fluid

Tip: Consult with torque converter manufacturers before selecting a new converter.

Performance gains: well-balanced driveline, smoother shifts, maximize your engine’s power band

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