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1964 Corvette - The Timberwolf Speed Shop C2 Project Car: The Beginning

CF and Corvette Restoration AZ team up to build the ultimate C2 street fighter from a humble "carny" Corvette

Kim Ian Madsen Aug 15, 2007
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Incredible Hulk - As we approach the Vette for the first time, the excitement builds.

We are going to take you on a journey, not only of space and time but one that includes fiberglass and steel. This journey will encompass the transformation of a domesticated Corvette into a C2 beast, changing a Dr. Jekyll into a Mr. Hyde if you will; one that will lurk the streets at night and rule the roads by day. When its oily lifeblood is warm and circulated, a treacherous scream will be heard coming from under its muscular skin. A scream that will be heard from far, far away, almost like a pack of hungry timber wolves on a clear night.

In serious horsepower circles, this C2 beast will never be tamed. It will always be lurking and waiting to wreak havoc on the unprepared car builder. For the one who has not bulletproofed every aspect of his or hers car's components, the beast will wreak havoc on every cubic inch of their being. This beast isn't human or animal, it's the C2 Timber Wolf Corvette that has a heartbeat with a personality all its own. This car has an insatiable appetite for whatever gets in its way, and when the beast is hungry, it goes on the road looking for whomever or whatever it may devour. Soon in your town, around any corner, at any stoplight, the beast called the Timber Wolf C2 may be on the road leading to the "Taillight Zone."

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Where, oh Where? - There is a C2 coupe under there somewhere.

Yes, imagine reading this with the low monotone voice of Rod Sterling with a lit cigarette burning in your hand, tilting your head a little to the side, enunciating the words, "Taillight Zone." We just couldn't resist! A C2 Vette named Timber Wolf. It gives literary license to mate machine to animal.

When you think about a journey, any journey, many times you have a preconceived notion of how the final destination will turn out. When you are planning a special car project like this one, there is an excitement that generates energy in the planning and preparation. You plan, prepare, take notes, make drawings, and have visions at night of how the project should turn out. But as we all know, project cars can and will take on a persona of their own. This is the story of how the Corvette Fever/Timber Wolf Speed Shop C2 project began.

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Interior Moves - Kim contemplates the interior, thinking about what can be.

When the head office of Primedia got in touch with Corvette Fever to discuss the Timber Wolf project and the possibility of building this car, a big decision had to be made. Who could possibly help build a car of this magnitude in the short timeframe dictated by Timber Wolf? due to the flurry of restoration sales activity over the last couple of years, many, if not all, of the great restoration shops currently have two to three years of work already spoken for. CF contacted Corvette Restoration AZ in Tempe, Arizona. After several intense phone calls, the shop found a way to take the project on. Great! Now we had to come up with a build plan and find a suitable car to rebuild ASAP. This would not be an easy process given all the parameters of the build, but everyone was excited to get started.

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Dusty Trails - Tumbleweeds and dust notwithstanding, the car is complete and looks perfect for our project.

As the Timber Wolf project ramped up, the next step was to find a suitable donor car. The search was finally narrowed down to three potential cars: a '67 coupe in Rochester, New York, a project car owned by John Blanding; a '66 coupe in Phoenix, Arizona, more or less a finished car; and a '64 coupe that was purchased many years ago by Jerry Sawyers, proprietor of a carnival concession company in the Washington State area.

Jerry is now retired and has amassed an incredible collection of rare musclecars. In years past, when Jerry would set up his carnival all over the U.S., he would wander through the parking lot searching for vehicles for sale. The shrewd, astute business man that he is, he would purchase notable and rare musclecars for pennies, and then leave them sitting in the parking lot for the duration of the carnival to make the carnival appear busier. When the carnival was over, he would stash the purchased vehicles in a warehouse and leave them, moving on to do the same thing in the next town.

When Jerry was told about this project, he offered to sell this '64 at a fair price, less its running gear. The stock powertrain was to be replaced anyway so a deal was struck, and the car was brought from Jerry's storage area near Phoenix to the Corvette Restoration AZ shop in Tempe. Ironically, we searched the entire country for a car, and the best one was located only a quarter-mile away.

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Lookin' Good - After the car was back up on its feet, it started looking better and better.

The car is a red '64 small-block, four-speed coupe with a stock black interior. The car hadn't been driven in many years, but it had been properly stored (between Washington and Arizona) so the chassis was solid and rust-free.

After the Corvette was delivered, the old engine and tranny were prepared for removal, and the body was stripped down to bare fiberglass, revealing some prior front-end collision damage that was poorly repaired. So the decision was made to hang a fresh jig-built front end and a '67 big-block hood on the car, provided by Jerry Geizler of Corvette Image located in Oregon. Corvette Restoration AZ uses Jerry's parts exclusively, and the quality, fit, and finish are excellent. The rear fenders had also been previously cut out to mount wider tires, which were, unfortunately, poorly repaired back to original.

Currently, the body is being transformed with a wide body kit, giving the car the ability to apply all the forthcoming horsepower to the road with some substantial rubber. "Cheetah Bob," the builder of Bill Thomas' continuation Cheetahs, graciously fabricated the fender flares using Corvette Restoration AZ's own molds. These wide-body parts are made to order and really make the car's beastly-styled attitude-wider shoulders with a super muscular stance.

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The front wheel is now back on and rolling.

A few highlights of this kick-butt, modified C2 coupe that CF and Corvette Restoration AZ are building for the Timber Wolf Speed Shop:
* It will be powered by a 393ci small-block "Maxi Mouse" stroker motor, built by noted engine builder JD Machine of Lake Havasu City, Arizona. Preliminary dyno numbers are quite impressive: 475 BHP and 480 lb-ft of torque at only 5,600 rpm.
* Hedman headers will expel the spent fuel into original side pipes.
* A Be Cool radiator and fan system will be keeping all that horsepower chilled.
* Classic Motor Sports Group supplied a new five-speed Tremec transmission and all the related hardware.
* Vette Brakes & Products has provided all their latest and greatest brake-and-suspension components to bring the car into the 21st century in fine style.
* Al Knoch supplied one of his dead-on black vinyl interiors.
* Corvette Clocks by Roger will refurbish the instrument panel and clock.
* A Vintage Air A/C system will keep the cabin chilly.
* Custom Auto Sound provided their latest high-end sound system.
* Flaming River is providing a polished tilt column and steering wheel.

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Wheelin' & Dealin' - Kim negotiating the purchase with Jerry Sawyer.

Do you think you know classic cars? Well, here's your chance to prove it. Timber Wolf is transforming six classics back to their original glory in the Timber Wolf Speed Shop-then they're giving them away! The Timber Wolf C2 project car is part of this promotion. But if you want to drive home a winner, you'll have to use your "gearhead."

Here's how it all works: From May 15 to November 1, you'll find a code under the lid of every Timber Wolf can. Enter that code at TWSPEEDSHOP.COM, pick a car, and estimate how much you think it will be worth once the transformation is complete. For a better estimate of its value, you can watch web videos of each car's transformation and read articles right here in Corvette Fever on our car, as well as in Street Rodder ('32 Ford coupe), Mopar Muscle ('69 Super Bee), Hot Rod ('57 Chevy), Mustang Monthly ('69 Mustang Sportsroof ), and Car Craft ('67 Ford Fairlane). If you're the first person whose bid is on the money, that car is yours!

Stay tuned. There is a lot more action coming your way as we continue to build this incredible Corvette right here in the pages of Corvette Fever.

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What's Up? - James surveying the scene and contemplating the build.

Corvette Restoration AZ is a state-of-the-art restoration facility located in the heart of metropolitan Phoenix. With 10,000 square feet of shop area and a spray booth, the experts headed by Kim Ian Madsen are able to handle all types of restorations and resto-mods. For the last six years, Kim has provided breakdown assistance for the prestigious Copperstate 1000 Road Rally, sponsored by the Phoenix Art Museum. He coordinates three mechanics and six trucks, including three tow trucks provided by AAA Arizona. Approximately 85 exotic cars travel 1,000 miles in four days through the scenic secondary roads of beautiful Arizona. It's a challenging task, but Kim and his crew manage to make astonishing repairs on the road to all types of vehicles.

The crew at Corvette Restoration AZ includes Kim Ian Madsen, owner with over 30 years of shop ownership; James Breck Alvord, body shop manager and fiberglass maestro; Nikki Miller, office manager extraordinaire; Eric Martins, ASE certified tech and Vette suspension expert; Troy Westerman, shop fabricator and welder; Dean Vitullo, fiberglass expert; David "Fuzzy" Dungy, all-around go-to-guy; Elio Diaz, bodyman and painter; Shaun Guerin, combo guy; Steve Neel, C1 expert in pursuit of NCRS master judge level; and Jeff Stemshorn, paint finish expert.

Corvette Restoration AZ
Tempe, AZ 85281
(480) 804-1484

YOU COULD WIN THIS CAR, or one of five other classics at the Timber Wolf Speed Shop. Go to for details.

No Purchase Necessary to enter or win in the Timber Wolf Speed Shop Promotion. For Official Rules and how to obtain a free code, visit Starts 12:01 a.m. CT 5/15/07 and ends 11:59 p.m. CT 11/1/07, or while supplies last. Open to legal residents of the contiguous 48 U.S. & D.C. (excluding VA & MA), 21-or-older, tobacco users, and for those with a valid U.S. driver's license. Void in VA, MA, and where prohibited.

Sponsor: Pinkerton Tobacco Co. LP.

Al Knoch Interiors - Interior
ATI Performance Products - Engine Balancer
Automotive Racing Products (ARP) - Main Bearing & Cylinder Head Bolts
Be Cool - Radiator & Fan System
Billet Fabrication - Billet Valve Covers
Champ Pans - Oil pan & Pickup
Classic Chevy 5-Speed - TKO Tremec Transmission Elite Kit
Coffman Manufacturing - Radiator Core Support
Comp Cams - Camshaft kit, Pushrods, Timing Chain & Cover, Plugs, Rocker Arms
Corvette Central - Sidepipes, Exterior Lights, Battery Tray, Window Seals
Corvette Clocks by Roger - Gauge Cluster & Clock Rebuild
Corvette Image - Corvette Front End Assembly & Hood
Corvette Restoration AZ - Paint, Bodywork & Assembly
Custom Autosound - Stereo & Speaker System
Detroit Speed & Engineering - Power Steering Pump
Diamond Racing Products - Pistons
Eagle Specialty Products - Crankshaft & Connecting Rods
Eaton - Differential (Posi Unit)
Flaming River Industries - S/S Tilt Column, Steering Wheel & Adapter, Steering Box, Alternator Kill Switch
Hedman Hedders - Headers
Holley Performance Products - Carburetor, Intake Manifold & Water Pump (Weiand)
JD Machine - Engine Block, Assembly & Dyno
Mahle Clevite - Main & Rod Bearings
M & H Electric Fabricators - Wiring Harnesses
Melling Select Performance - Oil Pump & Intermediate Shaft
Mid America Motorworks - HD Side Yokes & Seals
Motive Gear - Ring-and-Pinion, Install Kit
MSD Ignition - Distributor, Starter, Coil, Plug Wires, MSD6AL Box
Paragon Reproductions - Grille, Mirrors, Trim & Fasteners
Quanta Products - Gas tank & sender
Racing Head Service - Cylinder Head Assemblies
Vette Brakes and Products - Brakes & Suspension Components
Vintage Air - A/C & Frontrunner Pulley System
Willy's Carburetor & Dyno Shop - Holley Carburetor (build)



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