It’s officially, official. The RideTech Corvette has started it’s journey to being restored in 48 short hours. Now you see this isn’t some basic restoration where they are washing the car, slapping on a set of wheels and adjusting the timing – no this is a full blown restoration, in 48 hours. Broken up over three, 16 hour days, we are standing by-often times getting in the way to snap a picture or two.
Before starting there was a buzz in the air of excitement. Months of planning, thousands of traveled miles, and hundreds of parts all combined at RideTech to make this happen. Right before the action started, a meeting was held to discuss a few last minute things and to stress the importance of safety. Just because there’s a rush to get the car done in time, doesn’t mean that there should be corners cut for starting.
Starting promptly at 8:00AM EST, the garage door rolled up, the timer started and the Corvette was fired then driven inside. Like a swarm of bees, the entire crew went to work on the ‘Vette. Everything was going to be removed from the car, sans the glass.
Amazingly, within one hour and ten minutes, the entire motor and transmission were slid out! If it was me, I might have the oil drained and the radiator out in that much time. Parts were flying off the car left and right, and a pile of used parts started to amass off the side.
One thing that was quickly found out is this car wasn’t a virgin Corvette, even though it looked great before disassembly. The front right corner had been in an accident at some point in its life, and repaired. This didn’t cause massive problems, but did cause some real-world problems. Some of the fiberglass pieces didn’t fit quite right, and a few bolt holes were off. Luckily they were able to modify and fabricate some new parts, and work through the bad repairs of yesterday.
The team continued to hustle and the entire car was completely disassembled by noon. This ‘Vette went from a running and driving car, to a shell in a mere four hours. Sometimes we had to stop and remind ourselves this was a car build, not a chop shop!
Inside the RideTech headquarters is where this was all taking place. The car is in the middle of the floor, with lights and cameras all around. On the perimeter is work benches, with each section of the car splayed out like a surgeons table; one had all the old gauges and wiring with the new laying next to it. On another table was the Lingenfelter 659 horsepower LS, getting outfitting with a Centerforce clutch.
The afternoon remained productive, with reassembly already starting. Lots of small details were starting to happen, as boxes were opened and figured out. The new RideTech rear suspension was assembled under the car, and the installation of the Baer brakes. Inside the cab healthy amount of BoomMat was installed to keep things cozy and new brake lines were being hand bent off to the side. American Autowire started to wire up the car, a tedious and time consuming process that will save tons of headaches later. On the outside of the car the front valance was getting plenty of love, and the Vintage Air was starting to get fitted along with the oil tank for the dry sump system.
All-in-all, a few weeks worth of work was accomplished today. Stay tuned as we bring you more coverage from days two and three!
To recap the days work: The car was fully stripped down the bare bones. The front and rear suspension were installed, along with the rear brakes. The transmission tunnel was modified for the new T-56 transmission. The entire body was sanded down smooth and the front valance received a ton of work. That’s just the work that was actually done to the car. There was lots of work going on just off the camera, like installing the clutch and transmission along with the Vintage Air front runner system.
Tomorrow at 8AM sharp the engine and transmission are going to get nestled in, so make sure to tune in! Also, just out below for a full gallery of pictures!