1963 Chevrolet Corvette - Concealed Weapon

Dren Adams' Sensational Split-Window Packs LT5 Firepower

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But the engine was another story. "I actually found the engine up in Fairbanks, Alaska," Adams says. "It was a new crate engine that I'd bought as a spare for my other ZR-1s, just to have." To it, he added a new-in-the-crate ZR-1 six-speed manual transmission he'd located in Florida, and with that, he (and Eckert's) had all they needed to restore and update the midyear.

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In all, it took about three years to transform the split-window from "carbecue" to the coolness seen here.

What's it like to drive? Need we ask? "It's a dream! It's really nice to drive," Adams says enthusiastically. "But it's nothing like the new 2010 ZR-1 I've got."

Is there another ZR-1 project in Adams' future? Maybe. "I've got a '54 Corvette right now, and I'm contemplating whether to put a ZR-1 engine in it or not," he says. "I'd hate to, because it's all there and all original, but the front end's got to be replaced on it."

If he does it, that "'54 ZR-1" would be in good company, though. Not only does Adams have this and the five other ZR-1s among the 13 Corvettes in his collection, but he's also got the "Poor Man's Corvette" that he built in high school, which he bought from his former shop teacher and restored.

But, as times have changed, building a Corvette of any kind has become a more-dollar-intensive proposition than in the past. The big piece of advice that Adams has for anyone considering any sort of Vette project? "Have a nice bank account!"




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