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Locked up for too long- John’s HG wagon

October 10, 2022

When John parked up his HG Holden wagon in his mother in-laws shed, he never thought it would be nearly 20 years before he got to hear the sweet Rumble of 70s Chevrolet goodness again.

But, that’s what happened.

Stumbling across a couple of very nice Toranas out on an Australia Day cruise (hint: that’s us) and striking up a conversation, John decided it was about time he entrusted his old girl to someone who could exterminate the cobwebs and drive the old girl, once again.

So what’s special?

Well this time capsule of a Holden wagon was a genuine one family car. Sold to John by the original buyers son.

Before selling, the young guy had shoe horned a Camaro 350 into the bay, a th350 box in the tunnel and just about the whole Bilstein and Selby’s catalogue underneath.

As we rolled the wagon into the workshop, all of the team here at the Central Coast’s premium vintage car workshop, Gassed Automotive – fell in love.

It’s a great example of a time when parts were cheap, modifying was simple and hopped up street cars were rolling the roads en masse.

We’ve rebuilt all four corners of the braking system as well as having the booster reconditioned and upgraded, new master cylinder, some new brake lines and every line removed, flushed and inspected otherwise.

The front calipers were pretty much locked, so they got a thorough rebuild as did the rear drum setup.

The Bilstein shocks were suprisingly still 100% functional, so they got a quick clean and we’re reinstalled.

Up front, we rebuilt and tweaked the carby, fanned up a custom MSD lead set, rebuilt the distributor, fitted up a new high-performance coil and fresh plugs.

Every fuel line needed replacing or soaking to remove the 20+ year old hunk.

We gave the transmission a full fluid flush, check over and service, noticing the turbo 350 has been hopped up with a shift kit, back in its 80s glory years.

We rebuilt the tailshaft with a couple fresh Universal joints, the diff with new bearings and seals, new centre gasket and dealt with some minor rust of the housing then slapped some new bushes on the shocks, leaf springs and sway bars.

Underneath the front we fitted a mix of rubber and nolathane to the control arms, swaybar and shocks.

Electrically we had to do away with a bad 80s immobilizer and rewire a few sins of the past. We’ve also converted the old girl to h4 semi sealed beams, trying to keep as period as possible looks wise, but adding in some modern safety.

Finally, we’ve rust treated and cavity waxed the bejeezus out of every nook and cranny.

With everything tested and ready to hot the road again, John couldn’t believe how much he’d actually missed that chev Rumble and the feeling of rolling down the road in something as unique as the wagon.

Want to know why people like John are choosing to bring their cars from Sydney to us here in Berkeley Vale, on the Central Coast?

Call or send Gassed Automotive a message and find out why we are the Central Coasts best mechanical and full service automotive specialist for modern, vintage and historical cars of all makes and models.

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