1953 Chevrolet Corvette - Kool Kustom

Collector John Goodman Now Owns A True Piece Of Custom-Car History

Iain Ayre Apr 9, 2009 0 Comment(s)
Corp_0905_13_z 1953_chevrolet_corvette Front_view 1/19

A brief ride down to the fish docks under the Ballard Bridge in Seattle in the Kustom was memorable. On the day of the shoot, the Corvette was reluctant to start but eventually fired up, spluttering and spitting as it warmed up. Keeping three carbs in tune is a pain anyway, and in a barely-used car it's worse. Triple SU carbs are one reason why so many E-Type Jaguars finished up with Chevy engines. The idle finally settled down enough to drive off, and the heavy clutch and gearbox and the large gobs of available torque are a disincentive to changing gears, so Second and Third did nicely. The ride is fairly stiff but still very acceptable even on some rough Seattle side roads.

If I owned this car, I would probably drive it everywhere, so it's probably for the best that John owns it instead. The thermostat may be sticky, as the very cool-looking temperature gauge suggests a rather uncool tendency to boil. Fortunately, the dockside location isn't far from the building that houses the Goodman collection, so the engine was switched off and left to cool down quickly as the photo session proceeded.

After a few hours of looking through a Nikon at the car, I still think it's more fab than the already-fab stock C1 Corvette. I will be gently pushing John to take it to a few shows next year so that more Corvette enthusiasts can get a look at it. Hopefully he can take a hint.

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