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Vall's gassers

My 1946 Austin gasser against Toymaker's Evil Twin, twin engine dragster at Billetproof drags 2012.

At the Portland Roadster show in 2013. Best in Class in Nostalgia Hotrod Class.

2012 Billetproof drags Toutle Wa.

Billetproof 2012

1946 Austin gasser, 327 Chevy bored .040", camel hump 2.02" heads, Isky Cam, Holley Pro Dominator tunnel ram, twin Holley 450's, Dougs headers, TH350 with manual valve body, Pontiac rear axle with 3.73 posi, Dutchman axles.

Headed out racing, with my '69 Suburban tow vehicle.

1963 Falcon Futura gasser. 454 big block Chevy bored .040", Edelbrock Performer aluminum heads, Weiand tunnel ram, twin 600 Holleys, Dougs headers, Crane hydraulic cam, Crane roller rockers, Pete Jackson gear drive. Super T10 four speed. 8.8" Ford axle with 3.73 limited slip. mid 60's Econoline straight axle

Bug catcher scoop. Just cut the hood opening and edged it.

new lettering painted on.

The big Chevy 464 c.i.

At the Billetproof Drags Toutle, Wa. 2013

Relocated Moon tank, with new Richies brackets and custom built mounts. Swapped in '61 grille.

My latest project car. 1939 Chev Master Deluxe Opera coupe. Another gasser project.

Delivereed to my curb, and ready for 6 months of rust repair.

Tail panel removal. Totally rusted out.

New tail panel welded in.

New floor panels going in.

New rockers going in.

Floors completed and insulated.

350 SBC engine. Full roller 1990 motor fitted with 70's LT1 heads, Howards roller cam.

New front axle going in. 1958 Chev 1/2 ton truck axle narrowed 5" and converted to disc brakes.

New 8.8" Ford posi rear axle. 3.73 gear raatio.

Engine/trans going into the chassis. Trans is a 700R4 overdrive 4 speed.

Engine in place.

Front suspension completed and painted.

Engine completed.

Dashboard painted and instrument cluster built.

1952 Pontiaac steering wheel fitted to 1990 Chev truck tilt column.

Old school Towel City pie crust slicks on American Torq Thrust TTO wheels. As cast centers.

Body stripped to bare metal. Fiberglass trunk lid.

Epoxy sealer shot.

A horrible fitting fiberglass frontend!!

Relief cutting the hood to try and bend it to fit.

Located a pair of steel front fenders! So dumped the fiberglass one piece frontend. Will use the hood off the frontend after more fitting.

Fenders on. Reinforcing plate built to tie fenders and grille together. Hood pins to hold the glass hood on.

'32 Ford radiator fitted, and aluminum 3/8" rod braces bent up and fitted.

Pushed outside for the first time in 9 months!

Divider panel for backseat area.

Pontiac Vibe bucket seats.

Trunk cover box to protect fuel cell vent lines and wiring.

New Quick Fuel 650 double pumper to replace Demon 700 carb.

First start up of the 350 Chevy roller motor.

Exhaust system with electric cutouts.

Undercarriage cleaned and painting beginning.

Modified Hurst shifter to shift the 700R4 automatic trans.

Modified headlamp reflectors now setup for 1157 turn signal lamps, and LED headlamps.

Hand built ladder bars.

Fitting garnish moldings and discovered one was incorrect for a 1939 opera coupe with sliding 1/4 window option. Of course none available, and if they were I couldn't afford it! So time to slice and dice the bad one and bend, shape, and weld it to fit.

After cutting it, and removing the excess length and height, I bent it to match the other side. Once I could lay the pieces on top of the good pattern, I tacked it back together and welded it solid. Then polished all the paint off.

Had to also cut the relief slot on the glass side to allow for the knob that slides the window open. But it fits good, and looks just like the other garnish molding now.

After a brake bleed I took the '39 out for it's first test drive to adjust the trans TVR cable on the 700r4 OD trans. All went perfect, with no glitches or issues, so a success!

Finally mostly done, except for paint and windshield glass. A quick cleanup today.

Cleaned up the engine bay, and gave it a quick wash to remove sanding dust from the bodywork.

Finished up the interior old school. I did it in diamond tuck pattern.

All new carpet I happened to have a roll of black laying around, so used it here.

New paint on the frame was trashed by overspray, so I scuffed it again, and shot it gloss black over again.

Back "seat" area. This car had a backseat when new, but I decided to not try to find one, and deleted the backseat.

Not sure why, but images loaded from my cell phone keep posting 90 degrees off.

With the help of a suction cup glass tool I was able to install rear glass by myself. A great little tool for under $10!

After a bit of driving the old Pontiac 18" wheel proved to be just too big. Swapped it for a Joe's Racing 15" wheel.

After getting estimates to have my bucket seats redone, I was in such shock I finally decoded to take a shot at sewing them myself. Began searching for a used commercial machine, and found a refurbished Japanese made machine. So started stripping the covers off.

Ripped the seams apart, and used the old material as a pattern to mark out my diamond pattern upholstery. Then sewed the new inserts together.

Got the patterns sewn in, but quickly realized I'd made them a little big when the first seat was too loose. Pulled it back off, cut down the inserts, and re-sewed them. 2nd time was much better, and they fit! On to the 2nd seat, and it went well the first time! Got both seats done, and reinstalled the seats. Interior is completed now!

A setback after just 500 miles! My engine developed a lifter noise that I couldn't adjust out, no matter how many times I tried. All testing I did showed perfect compression, and no cylinder leakdown, yet it still made the clicking noise! Finally contacted Howards Cams and tech told me I likely had a plugged roller lifter. So took the intake off and replaced all 16 roller lifters. At the same time I swapped out all 16 valve springs to "high lift" .550" springs, and installed a set of forged steel Comp Magnum roller rockers. These rockers were designed to clear stock valve covers, so allowed me to retain my old vintage Weiand finned aluminum valve covers. After a couple day's work, it's purring again, and sounds great.

A trip back. Billetproof drags at Riverdale Raceway Park

My recent 1200 mile trip in the '39 Chev coupe! Wonderfully uneventful, and a joy all through the drive! The full roller 350 SBC got around 19 mpg, and purred along at 70-75 mph the whole trip!

A stop along the 1200 mile cruise.

At Grande Coulee Dam.

Grande Coulee Dam


1276 car nuts gave this a thumbs-up. Do you? Thumbs-up


Anonymous on Apr 17, 2020 said:

Very very nice. I love the work. Cheers.

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1946Austin on Apr 18, 2020 said:

Thanks! It's been tough at times with all the rotted metal, but fun once I got through replacing it all.

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Anonymous on Apr 25, 2020 said:

1946Austin - I came across photos of your '63 Falcon and fell hard for it! I know you sold it, is there any way you could connect me with the new owner? Let me know and we can connect on Bangshift. Thanks, Thor1

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1946Austin on Apr 26, 2020 said:

Sorry, all I know is he lives near Tacoma, Wa.

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ghpcnm on Sep 11, 2020 said:

I'm in love with that Falcon...THUMBS UP !!!

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1946Austin on Sep 12, 2020 said:

Falcon was sold 18 months ago to make room for the 1939 Chev coupe. Can't keep them all.

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azmusclecar on Sep 16, 2020 said:

My wife calls me a "GASSER" but I don't look anything like your car. Your car is gorgeous. And we are about the same age. Can't say that about me anymore. That car will still be running, WHEN I"M NOT. Beautiful.

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1946Austin on Sep 17, 2020 said:


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57timemachine on Oct 30, 2020 said:

Beautiful work and I commend all your amazing efforts on all your cars. Real nice to see a gasser that is something other than a Willy's. Did you ever get any flak from Ford guys for having the Chev big block in your Falcon. My younger brother has a stock original 1962 Falcon sedan that we restored together. Cheers.

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1946Austin on Oct 31, 2020 said:

Thanks! And yes, I got several Ford guys who were irate when they realized the big block in my Falcon was a Chevy, and not a Ford! Some commented, while some simply shook their head and walked away. But the vast majority of people loved the BBC in a Falcon. I personally prefer Chevy engines, but when it comes to hotrods I accept just about anything guys want to swap in them. Gassers rarely ran engines of the same manufacture as the bodies, so it was never an issue back in the days of Gas Class cars.

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57timemachine on Nov 1, 2020 said:

As much as I am a GM guy (Chevy and Pontiac), just like my dad was before me (Chevy, Pontiac and Buick). I love all cars and all engines. My younger brother was always a GM guy (Chevy) until he bought the Falcon four years ago. I had never worked on a Ford until he got the Falcon. I have never understood people that just think what they are into matters and nothing else. Especially that stupid rivalry between Ford guys and Chevy guys. Come on folks we are all in it together for the greater good of our love for old cars. I appreciate all your cars here, no matter what engine is in them.Cheers.

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1946Austin on Nov 2, 2020 said:

I've owned Chevy cars, and Chevy powered cars most of my life, so I use Chevy engines because I know how to assemble them, and build them. The SBC in my '39 gave me some trouble because it's the late gen 1990 factory roller motor and one piece rear main seal. I had a steep learning curve during assemby, and found Chevy had changed many things on these motors, so some parts I had planned to use I could not. Cams are different being roller camshafts, but also have a different bolt pattern on the timing gears! And crankshafts are different on both ends, so take different timing sets, and also different balancers and flywheels. And they're a bastard on balancing as unlike a std. SBC they aren't fully balanced internally. But unlike a SBC 400 they're not fully externally balanced either. They're half and half, and take a special flywheel to complete the balancing. And of course they have the one piece rear main seal, which is a totally different oil pan too! I had to get rid of all sorts of parts I planned to use, and buy new to use this engine. But at least the late SBC still accepts the early heads I had, so that was a good thing. None of those ugly center bolt vaalve covers, and the weird intake manifolds with hardly any bolts to seal them!

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57timemachine on Nov 9, 2020 said:

That sure sounds like a lot of work but cheers to you for getting it together.

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57timemachine on Nov 9, 2020 said:

That sure sounds like a lot of work but cheers to you for getting it together.

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Mario on Nov 29, 2020 said:

You have a beautiful 39 Chevy and incredible how much time you put into getting it to where it is today. Great job in rebuilding and restoring it.

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Anonymous on Nov 29, 2020 said:

Thanks! Can't say it's all been fun, but once the rust repair was done I did enjoy the rest.

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