Chevy Nova Full Tube Chassis - Fit To Be Tied

The Chassisworks Nova Gets Cut Apart...Then Reconnected

Terry Cole May 1, 2001 0 Comment(s)
Sucp_0105_18_z Chevy_nova_full_tube_chassis Inner_frame_rail 2/36

The inner frame rail goes straight back from the front pad to the rear crossmember. Note the Chassisworks frame connector was still connected on the passenger side. In order not to disrupt the alignment of the front-end clip in relationship to the car, we did one side of the new frame rails at a time.

Here's the mounting point of the inner rail at the rear crossmember. At this point it was important for Mando to make sure that the two rails were at the same height level and parallel to one another. A small piece of box tubing did the job well. This level is where the aluminum floor will sit, so it was also important to make sure it wasn't so high that the driver would hit his head on the underside of the roof.

With the driver's side frame rails in place, the attention was directed at removing the passenger side unibody structure and frame connector. This is the mounting pad that the Chassisworks front clip bolts to.

Sucp_0105_19_z Chevy_nova_full_tube_chassis Rear_crossmember 3/36

A torch was used to sever the box tube connector from the rear crossmember.

Once cut off, the piece was simply lifted out and another gusset was made to cap off the rear frame rail.

A small bottle jack was employed to get the right-side, inner frame rail level with the car and the other side. Nothing's worse than to have one side different from the other. The only problem we ran into was that the roll cage was inboard of the right rocker panel about 3/4 inch more than the left. This was negligible, though, and didn't pose any alignment problems.

Sucp_0105_20_z Chevy_nova_full_tube_chassis Mounting_pad 4/36

From this view you can see just how much of the floor and firewall was cut away and where the new frame rail attaches to the front clip and the existing roll bar.

Again, the importance of making sure everything is correctly aligned is prime. Here, Mando measures the distance from the rail running alongside the inner rocker panel to determine where the center rail would fit. With the cage off the aforementioned 3/4 inch, he had to shorten the distance the same amount as the driver's side.

Once the four front-to-rear frame rails were in place, work was begun on connecting the front strut rails to the roll cage. First order of business was to cut some more sheet metal from the windshield wiper cowl. When complete, this area will be trimmed back as far as where the hood ends.




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