© see info on the photos. (Rik Hoving Kustoms)
1957 Chevy John Gomez - Bailon
John Gomez from Hayward, California.
Joe Bailon performed all the custom body work on John's 1957 Ch ...more
evy HT. A new grille cavity was handformed. The hood peaks where extanded downwards to meet the new grille opening, and on the top of the hood a scoop was created flowing nicely into the two peaks. Canted quad headlights where set into modified front fenders, and at the rear the fenders where extended and peaked, and a set of 1959 Cadillac taillights set into custom windsplits. Both bumpers where removed and roll pans created with chrome nerf bars on both ends protecting the body. In the lower bullets of the rear pan a set of antennas was tunneled in. Joe also created a side scoop in the lower rear quarter panels, styled after a 1958 Chevy. Gene Winfield painted the car. After extensive modifications by another customizing icon, Bill Reasoner, it was renamed “The California Nugget,” after which it won a series of awards, culminating in an ISCA Grand Finale Championship in 1982. Over the years, this car has received so many custom modifications, it’s impossible to list them all. Suffice it to say, the wraparound windshield was chopped three inches, and the coupe was fitted with a hardtop from a ’57 Buick. The body was sectioned and dropped over a hand-built square tube frame. Hand-formed fins extend the rear of the car and a molded rear bumper has been contoured to match.
A custom grille was fabricated and headlight assemblies from a 1962 Chrysler were adapted to fit the fenders. Many suspension pieces and the engine block were gold-plated and hand-engraved, a process which took over a year to complete. The hardtop was painted with a wild candy purple/blue blend over a magenta stripe, with a yellow lower accent that highlights the wheel openings and rocker panels. The body was then ghost-flamed for maximum visual impact.
Under the scooped hood, with its molded twin Chevrolet nacelles, is a highly modified 327 cubic inch 1968 Chevrolet Corvette V8 with a Potvin style, crank-driven 6-71 GMC supercharger, fed by a pair of side-draft Weber carburetors. This competition style induction system is only rarely found on street-driven cars; it was more prevalent in the 1960s on dragsters and Bonneville racers, to facilitate a low silhouette. A mirrored surface under the hood helps display the highly polished engine. As a rule, customs don’t often have highly modified engines; this car is an exception. A sturdy Muncie four-speed manual transmission handles the shifting, and it’s linked to a fully independent Jaguar E-Type suspension setup.
In 1997, the car was torn down, rebuilt, further modified, painted by Marcos Garcia, and re-introduced as “The Legacy,” in deference to its long history. A custom sculpted leather and vinyl interior was handcrafted exclusively for this car. Other exclusive interior appointments include a custom-crafted overhead console with a Sony CD/Tuner and a Sony 4-inch color TV/VCR monitor.
Displayed again at many subsequent ISCA events, “The Legacy” won many “Best of Show” and “Best Custom” awards, and once again, it became an ISCA Grand Finale Champion. Invited to be displayed in Sweden, Finland and Australia, “The Legacy” was always warmly received. This is the only custom car that has won the prestigious ISCA Grand Finale Championship on two separate occasions, in the 40-year history of the Association.
- Album was created 6 years 11 months ago and modified 6 years 7 months ago
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