'56 Chevy Dirt Track car...some guy I know.

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I grew up in an automotive family. My dad ran a service station/automotive repair shop, and always had a hand in race cars, so I guess it was only natural that I was interested in it too. I was working for him changing engines at 13, at 14 I rebuilt my first small block Chevy, and at 15 I bought my first race car, an old beat up '56 Chevy from local racer Ray Matthews, that we painted in white latex house paint....with brushes, of course. Hey, it looked great from the stands! I ran in the A-cadet division at Athens (Georgia) Speedway. That was in 1970, and that ol' car lasted 'till the end of the '71 season without me killing myself. We built a car from the ground up for '72, sticking with a '56 body. My dad's favorite late model driver had a black and orange car, so we decided to paint mine the same colors. We reskinned the car for '73 but stuck with the same color scheme.

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I've always wanted to build a model of my old race car, and finally talked myself into doing it. I started with the Revell '56 Delray kit, but the separate chassis/interior floor configuration doesn't lend itself well to building a race car. I ended up keeping the body, but using a chassis from the old Revell tri-five series...the ones with the opening doors. Most all the other parts came from the parts box, and I had to make up my own Volkswagen gas tank. The stock grill just didn't look right, so I used an MCG photoetch grill. The paint is Model Master Hugger Orange and gloss black....and yes, we tried to keep my car very clean, at least the side you were supposed to see (my dad was funny about that, lol), so not much weathering.

I'm very happy with the way it turned out, and although it took awhile to finish (I've been working on it off and on for a couple of years now), it was an absolute ball to build. Best of all though, it takes me back to the best time of my life. Man....I miss the 70s!

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Edited by roadhawg

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Posted · Report post

That's awesome! Great job!!

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Posted · Report post

thats is beautiful there bud

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Posted · Report post

Love the car and the story too!

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Posted · Report post

That is a very nice looking model.

It looks just like the one in your pictures-You did a very nice job !

I'm with you-I miss the '70s too.

Cheers. Larry

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Posted · Report post

That, to me, is the purest form of modeling. Doing something you have a fond emotional connection to, drawing on those memories as a reference, reliving the 1:1 build to some extent and ending up with a killer recreation of your car. Can tell this was a labor of love and you remember every inch of it. Really a well done, authentic piece.

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Posted · Report post

Thanks, guys!!!

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Posted · Report post

I love your model and great story too!

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Posted · Report post

Great job , brings back a lot of memories.

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That is one cool build Tommy! I love it! Nothing is as cool as a replica build IMO. Great work!

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Posted · Report post

Super cool!!

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very nice build Tommy! I was fairly young in the 70's but I miss them too, spent alot of time at tracks watching cars like this, I do miss it, my dad was Mo. NASCAR champion in 1953, way before my time, but I still have the big brass trophy sitting right here, great job on the 56!

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Posted · Report post

Very nice!

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Great job on the Five Six.... Hope to see you soon!!!

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Very nice,great story too.

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WOW!!!!,as said great story and I love the build,these are true race cars and true drivers......thanks for sharing.

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Awesome Car!! I really love this build! Great Job!

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Posted · Report post

Really nice model, excellent work..

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Posted · Report post

Now THAT is COOL!

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I'm very happy with the way it turned out, and although it took awhile to finish (I've been working on it off and on for a couple of years now), it was an absolute ball to build. Best of all though, it takes me back to the best time of my life. Man....I miss the 70s!

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This is why we do what we do. I'm happy how it turned out also, well done.

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Posted · Report post

Man, that is way cool Tom. I love '56 Chevy's anyway. B)

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You guys are too kind! Thank you!

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You're a lucky person to be able to build a great replica of your own actual race car, not just a "what if..." vehicle. Nice story, nice build. Do you have any other memories that you might be able to recreate in scale?

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Posted · Report post

One of the coolest models I`ve seen in a very long time. Nice job.

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Beautiful job on this model, congrats.

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