Rod & Custom Feature Car
Parke Bishop Jr.
Elverson, Pennsylvania
1953 Chevy 150 Sedan

Owner contact info:

Some new round-tube crossmembers and a transmission mount reinforce the stock GM framerails. The front of the car rides on a Heidt's Mustang II-style stainless IFS with polished tubular arms--and 2-inch dropped spindles for the slight rake. An anti-roll bar, air bags, and Pete & Jake's shocks complete the front suspension. The rear features a Currie 9-inch limited slip rearend with 3.42:1 gears, a triangulated four-bar, and ShockWaves from Air Ride Technologies. Parke added Baer disc brakes all around--13-inchers in front and 12s in back. A round Moon style aluminum fuel tank is tucked behind the rear seat.

A six-pack of Hilborn motorcycle throttle bodies on stainless tube manifolds and a custom-fit Offenhauser 230 valve cover give an old-time look to the '69 Chevy 250 inline-six engine, even though it's a Hilborn electronic fuel-injection system. S&S Machine in Pottstown did the machining, with assembly by Ted "Squeak" Slaybaugh. The exhaust manifold is custom built from 1 7/8-inch primaries feeding into a 2-inch main rail, then split to dual 2-inch pipes with Pypes mufflers. The 700-R4 automatic and 2,500-stall converter were built by Coan.

Wheels & Tires
The Colorado Custom Sugar City 18x8 and 17x7 wheels add an edge to the look of the '53. The Z-rated Toyo T1R radials are 255/40ZR18s and 225/45ZR17s.

Body & Paint
Lots of bodywork was done to the 150 sedan sheetmetal, much of it by Will Wynn at BareBones Restyling. The hood probably received more attention that any other piece. The center seam was filled and the hood was pancaked and piecut to lower it an inch at the nose, which was shrunk in the center and leaned rearward. The front fenders were reshaped for the Mercedes 300 series headlights, tilted to roll with the body lines. The taillights use LEDs with vacuum-formed lenses in 1953 bezels. The turn-signals from a late-model Volvo were mounted in the rockers. No need to change the good-looking '53 grille much; this one was just tucked in 1 inches. The bumpers are stock but lowered an inch in the front and -inch in back. Derek White at Street Visions in Elverson laid down the two-tone paint, using DuPont Hot Hues colors: Sinful Cinnamon and Ginger Bronze. The body is chrome-free; all exterior brightwork is a brushed nickel finish, done at Advanced Plating in Nashville.

Seating is provided by front buckets from a 2000 Saturn and rear seats from a 2000 Chrysler LHS, covered in beige and black leather and vinyl by RP Interiors in Horseheads, New York. The textured black inserts have a carbon fiber appearance and the design seems influenced by the two-tone upholstery on '57 Bel Airs. An aluminum center console houses the Gennie shifter with a SoCal bullet knob. The pedals are from Clayton Machine Works, and the Budnik Four-Thirty model steering wheel is mounted on a Flaming River stainless column. The dash was painted in a non-gloss coat of the body color and the factory instrument panel was modified for the Mooneyes gauges. The original rearview mirror was flipped and installed on the dash. The finned radio delete plate is hinged to allow access to the Air Ride switches and gauges. The glovebox door conceals the custom panels for the Hot Rod Air controls and stereo. The Kenwood sound system with Vibe amplifiers and speakers was installed by Kenny Heller at Dynamic Autosports.