In Episode 8 of Roadkill we introduced you to the greatest engine swap project ever—a Hemi into a 1955 Chevy Bel Air. Nearly two years later, we finally get Mike Finnegan's Mopar-powered Tri-Five on the road, but not without a few problems along the way. Blown head gaskets, frayed wires, and severe sleep-deprivation are all overcome as Finnegan, Freiburger, and friends push to get this polarizing project car running again in time for an epic road trip.
The BlaspHEMI '55 Chevy rides on a Jim Meyer Racing Gasser tube chassis with Viking coilover dampers and Firestone Cheater slicks out back. Up front the car has a tubular straight axle, parallel leaf springs and tires small enough to fit on a VW Bug. The rear axle is a John's Industries 9-inch with 5.43:1 gears. The Hemi began life as a 528ci Mopar crate engine, which Finnegan rebuilt with a 0.030-inch overbore, ported aluminum heads, and a Comp Cams solid roller cam. The mill is topped off with a Hilborn stack injection system with EFI controlled by a FAST EFI ECU. An Aeromotive Stealth fuel tank and pump provides the fuel while MSD provides the spark. The engine is backed by a Tremec Magnum six-speed manual gearbox with an American Powertrain installation kit and a twin-disc clutch. The car was wired with a Speedwires kit and the guys built their own fenderwell headers using parts from Hedman.
To save weight, the original steel front clip was swapped out for a lightweight fiberglass tilt front end from Unlimited Products and the windows were replaced with lexan parts from ProGlass. The rollcage is a 10-point arrangement built from chrome-moly steel and TIG welded to the floor and frame. To save a ton of time, High Tech Auto Wraps covered the car in flat black vinyl instead of paint while the last of the parts were installed onto the car.
Roadkill appears on the Motor Trend channel. http://www.youtube.com/motortrend
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