Outside, most of the car retains its original post-car theme, with the exception of the body-color bumpers from VFN Fiberglass, which Thomas believes gives the car a smoother look. Larry also kept the car very original looking with the color swatch, Roman Red, which was an offering on all Biscaynes in 1962.
The car was completed just months before the Super Chevy Show last January in Bradenton, Florida. Winning an Editor's Choice award at that event is the jewel in the crown for Larry Thomas ... so far. He plans to keep on driving it around to shows in the Southeast and to flog the hell out of it every chance he gets.
"It was awesome winning the Editor's Choice award," Thomas said, "since I just completed the car a few months previous. It was a tremendous satisfaction."
Boy In A BubbleThe more luxurious (at least in terms of original equipment offered) is Ronald Jekonski's bubbletop '62 Bel Air. This body shop manager from Palm Chevrolet (Ocala and Gainesville, Florida) spent a good amount of time searching out the perfect candidate for his project, and eventually found a '62 in Tennessee (after finding bondo-mobiles, and cars that resembled Swiss cheese in other locales).
Jekonski's bubbletop packs a Chevy 572 big-block crate motor, with virtually all GM parts. The engine is a modern-day work of art, with a massive Demon Tri-Power carburetor setup, and a Demon intake manifold. Headers come by way of Sanderson, mated to a Magnaflow 211/42-inch exhaust. The sum of the power parts equals about 620 hp, more than 1 hp per cubic inch, which is always an impressive number without other performance add-ons like a supercharger or nitrous system.
The car absorbs the road with an Air Ride Technologies suspension, and puts the power to the rear wheels via a Moser 9-inch rearend, with 31-spline axles, 4.10 gears, and Positraction. Perhaps one of the more interesting areas on Jekonski's car is the brake system. Ronald brought that over from an '05 Corvette Z06, so there's no doubt that the '62 bubbletop stops in a hurry.
Jekonski did all the bodywork himself on the classic lines of the '62, along with the spectacular '06 Viper Red color scheme. The car also comes equipped with power steering and windows, and air conditioning from Vintage Air.
Each of these '62s has interesting characteristics in their own right: Jelonski's wild approach to braking, and Thomas' radio-delete soundtrack that's music to our ears. To be sure, over the years fewer and fewer of these cars turn up to shows around the country. That's why we're so pleased that Larry Thomas and Ronald Jekonski have taken the time and effort to preserve and improve upon a couple survivors from 1962.