Thursday, February 2, 2012

1955 Chevrolet Front Bumper

Meet Lucille, my 1955 Chevrolet 4 door custom sedan.  I bought her 23 years ago as a bone stock 210 with a 235 "Blue Flame" straight six with the original interior in perfect condition.  The engine seized up on me while I was in college.  So when hurricane Floyd hit in 1999, she was stuck and I was living too far away to get her to safety.  She ended up in about 4 feet of water practically ruined.  I came very close to selling her when I realized how much work (and money) it would take to restore her but just couldn't bring myself to do it.  Since I couldn't sell her the only choice I had left was to bring her back to life.  Well, with lots of help from friends and family, she's getting there.

The latest addition was a one piece "smoothie" bumper from Danchuk.  The standard bumper is a 3 piece unit.  The two seams are hidden by vertical bumper bars and mounting bolts are visible on the ends of the bumper.  I wanted the cleaner look of the smoothie version; no seams, no bumper bars, no visible mounting bolts.  The new bumper came with all the necessary mounting brackets and hardware which bolted to stock locations on the frame.  No drilling or welding required.  Installation took maybe 45 minutes by myself.

I love the clean look of the new bumper.  Overall I'm pleased with the product, but I don't know who packed the nuts and bolts for this thing.  I had two extra bolts and I was missing two nuts, and at least four washers.  No big deal but Danchuk is usually pretty good with stuff like that.  Quality of the chrome is very good but it looks like the surface prep on the bumper could have been better.  If you look closely you can see slight vertical lines in the bumper and a mild wave where one of the brackets was welded on the back.  So it may not win you any trophies at Pebble Beach but it looks perfect from 5 feet.  Lucille's no trailer queen, she doesn't mind.  Next up is the rear bumper.  I've got something custom planned for that too.  Stay tuned.