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Discussion Starter #1
I am a little late starting a build thread but I guess it is better to do it late than never.

I have always admired the first generation Novas. My dad bought a 1963 Chevy II Nova 4 door when I was in high school sometime around 1993. He found a low milage, unmolested, car in fantastic shape. There was not a speck of rust anywhere on the car. If I remember right, it was always stored in a garage until the little old lady that owned it died and the kids rolled it outside where the paint quickly faded. We repainted it, installed some new seat covers and went through the motor and he drove it around for several years. If it would have been a 2 door, I would have hot rodded it a long time ago. Dad still has the car but has not driven it in years. The paint has since faded yet again but the car has been stored inside for about the past 15 years.

I bought my 1964 Nova in March of 2013. Below is the original ad that caught my eye. The other pictures show the actual condition of the car when I went to see it. It looked nothing like the picture in the craigslist ad. The floor pan was totally removed, the trunk was rusted out, the front clip was off the car, the doors were off the car and the door skins had been removed, and the right rear quarter panel had been removed. It is a lot more of a project than I really wanted but he had bought a new Scott's Hotrods front end with every upgrade they offered, had all new sheet metal (except for a trunk lid) for the car including a new cowl induction hood, billet grill, chrome iDidit steering column, complete one piece floor pan, gas tank, etc. Most of the parts were new in the box and came with the car. The allure of the new parts was more than I could say no to. After a little negotiating, I brought the car home and started work.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
My first project was installing the new floor pan. Trying to get a one piece floor pan into the car proved to be a challenge. I finally put the car on my (newly acquired) lift, and attempted to put it in from the bottom. It would almost go...but not quite. I ended up cutting about 16" off of the back of the floor pan and welding it back together once I got it in the car. I was a little surprised at how easy installing a new floor pan was. However, the previous owner did remove the old floor pan and had the correct spot weld cutter to pop loose all the spot welds with out destroying the sheet metal.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
My next project was installing the new quarter panel on the right rear of the car. The previous owner had removed it. I got a brand new one with the car when I purchased it. After a little clean up with a grinder and some careful fitting, I got it welded back on. I had some pretty nice looking gaps before I started welding. The gaps seemed to tighten up some as it pulled when I was welding but I think I am still going to be in good shape. I looked and I did not have any pictures with the fender off before I started painting the inside of the fender well with POR15.

For anyone getting ready to start this project I would recommend buying a a couple good spot weld cutters and buying a bunch of vice grips. When test fitting the fender, I used the vice grips to hold the fender exactly where I wanted it. I must have fit and removed the fender 30 times but it turned out pretty well.

I also took the time to tear out the trunk floor. Some parts were easier to get to with the fender off so it was a perfect time to drill some of the hard to reach spot welds.
 

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Looking good keep us posted we all like pictures especially Nova pictures of course you could throw in a pretty girl once in awhile too
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My next project was mini tubs. I was initially attracted to the pro-street look but evolved to the pro-touring after doing some homework and realizing what my goals for the car were. Because of this, I wanted more tire under the back but I did not need 20" of tire. Instead of notching the frame to make more clearance, I decided to add about 2" to each of my wheel wells. This pushed my wheel wells over to the edge of the frame and allows me to keep my back seat for a stock looking interior.

I started the mini tub project after I removed the driver side rear quarter panel and realized how much more access I had to cutting the wheel well.

Rather than buying a mini tub kit, I bought a punch/flange tool at Harbor Freight. I cut a strip of metal and flanged both sides and punched it for the spot welds. My first punch/flange tool froze up on me and I had to take it back and get another. If I were doing it over again, I might look at buying one from Eastwood. However, it did the job.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Next on my list was the rear suspension. I looked at the Church Boys Racing multi leaf spring set up and was quite impressed with the videos of how their car handled. However, I started comparing the cost of the leaf spring set up to a coil over shock and 4 link kit and the price was almost the same. I looked at several different 4 link kits and finally decided to go with a Scotts Hotrods kit since I already had their front end on the car.

My first purchase was new rims and tires. I ended up going with Torque Thrust II wheels with the bright PVD finish. It is kind of like a black chrome. I tried to buy locally but Ebay was about $200 cheaper on the wheels.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I removed the old mono leaf springs and rear end and started mocking up my tires under the wheel well. I centered the tires up where I wanted them and got a measurement from wheel flange to wheel flange. I purchased a 9" rear end and sent it out to have it cut down and purchased new Mosier 31 spline axles.

As I previously stated, I purchased the Scotts Hot Rods 4 link kit. It came with some nice brackets and the rods had right and left hand threads to make them easy to adjust with out taking a rod end loose.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The 4 link was pretty easy to install. However, the instructions were terrible. They were generic for 4 link kits and were not very detailed.

I wanted to set my pinion angle at 3 degrees. I made a stand out of wood to support my pinion and hold it at a perfect 3 degrees. I don't have a picture of it but it sat where my floor jack is the picture below. Building a pinion stand made the project MUCH easier. Not only did it keep the pinion angle perfect, but it also kept the rear end from rolling around while I was trying to get everything square under the car.

I used zip ties (making an X) to hold my brackets on the 9" housing. This allowed me to move the brackets inboard and outboard to get everything in line during the fitting process. I used welding clamps to hold the front brackets in place on the frame rails. I then checked to make sure the brackets on the rear end housing were perpendicular to the floor. It was a trial and error process. After I got one side right, I tack welded it in 3 places and moved to the other side. The pictures below are of the link bars zip tied to the rear end. The other 2 pictures are of everything tack welded in place.

I am pretty happy with the 4 link kit. It came with Alden multi adjustable coil over shocks that are identical to what I have on the front. It should allow me to dial in my suspension for just the right ride/handling qualities that I want.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I had only tack welded my motor mounts in place so I pulled the motor out to weld the mounts in solid. I decided at this point I wanted to test fit my core support, inner fenders, outer fenders, etc. I wish I could say everything fit but it turns out there were some problems. With the Scott's Hot Rods front end, there is a box built in to the front of the frame rails. Because of this, you drill out the spot welds on the core support and remove the box on it. Once you do this, the core support sits down between the frame rails. The fist thing I noticed is that the core support brackets did not line up with the holes in the core support. They were off by a couple of inches. I called Scott's Hotrods and Jeff said there was a problem with some of the frames. I ended up having to cut the brackets off of my frame and Jeff mailed me a new set of brackets.

The new brackets arrived and I bolted them to the core support and tack welded them in place so I knew they would be in the right location. I then tried to fit my new inner fenders and found that they were about an inch too long to fit between the firewall and the core support. After many cuss words and a lot of frustration, I called Jeff to confirm some measurements. It turns out that they built the box on the end of my frame to the wrong specs. It was about 3/4" -1" too wide. Jeff sent me yet another set of core support brackets and I used a jig saw with a metal cutting blade to remove about 1" from the front of my frame. I will say that Jeff did give me excellent customer support and made it worth my while by throwing in a new set of inner fenders since I ruined mine by trying to trim them to fit. It should be noted that I initially was using the TCI inner fenders. Jeff sent me a set of Chasisworks inner fenders and they were a much better quality piece. They come with a bracket that bolts from the firewall to the core support that has the proper radius in it to make the outer fenders curve to match the hood. The the inner fenders bolt to this bracket. The inner fender kit also comes with a rubber boot that covers up the hole where the A-arms go through the inner fender with all stainless hardware.

Once I trimmed the front of the frame, I bolted the new brackets to the core support, bolted the inner fenders to the core support and then welded my new brackets in place. I then test fit my outer fenders and all of the holes lined up perfectly.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Below are some pictures of the trunk pan. I bought a 3 piece kit. The center part dropped right in. However, since I did a mini tub, the side panels required a little bit of fitting. After a little trial and error I finally got them fit. I am going to remove the splatter paint from the wheel wells and treat everything with POR 15 before I weld them in solid. The worst part about putting in a trunk pan is removing the old one. It is a tedious process but the new trunk pan fit amazingly well.
 

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Your build is lookin Great! You are sure taking the time to do it right. It is going to look killer with the big rears and BTW the wheels look great. One thing for sure, Once it's done the Chev2 is going to be Nice. Thanks for the thread and details of what is going on as you go.
 

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Wow! You are doing some great work there! :yes: It's going to be a beauty! It's great you can build all the updated technology into it. My first car was a 64 2 dr post... Look forward to your continued progress! Love the wheels!
 

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Thanks for the words of encouragement guys. I have a lot of time and money in the project and a long way to go. I have a baby due on May 2nd, so I am trying to get as much done as soon as possible. I have a sneeky suspicion that once the baby arrives, that work on my Nova will be much slower. A buddy of mine and his wife had a baby this week. He made the comment that he would be, "in baby jail for the next 2 - 6 months."
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Some progress on the Nova today. I stopped by the fab shop yesterday and they had not even started on my car yet. I stopped by again this afternoon and he had finished building back the one tube on the drivers side header. However, he had not even started on the 3 tubes on the passenger side that I had to cut loose. I hung around a while and gave Brian a hand. With some pressure to get back on my project, an my, "moral support," progress started happening quickly this evening.

Brian was able to reuse most of the tubes that I cut out. He cut, fit, and ground the tubes until they fit tight enough that he could TIG weld them back together. We then used some masking tape to hold them together so we could fit the next piece. Once he had all of the pieces cut, fit and taped in place, we unbolted the headers and removed them from the car. The tape held them together well enough that he was able to take them to his bench to weld them up solid. I stuck around long enough for him to remove the headers from the car. Hopefully, they will be done tomorrow afternoon. Done or not, the car is coming back to my shop so I can get some work done this weekend. Weather is great this time of year and I already lost one weekend waiting on Brian.
 

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Well, progress on the headers was slow again today. About the time we were making progress on the headers, Brain ran out of gas for the TIG welder. Naturally, it is a Friday evening and we can't get more gas until Monday. Brian got enough tack welded that we were able to test fit the headers in the car one last time . I loaded up the car and brought it back to my shop to work on it this weekend. Early next week, Brian should have more gas and finish up the headers. I have to know the headers fit correctly before I can disassemble the front end and send the parts out to have powder coated.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Looks great. What size wheels/tires did you go with on the front? Do you have any rubbing issues with them and the swaybar? Thanks
Well, before I found SNS, I purchased my wheels. I have 240-45-17s for the front and I do have tire clearance problems. It might work if I put the standard height spindles back on but with the 2" drop spindles, it is going to rub when I turn the tires. I am thinking about modifying my front fenders to give me some more clearance. Not sure what I will do yet. I have a little more time to think about it before I have to do anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Well, before I found SNS, I purchased my wheels. I have 240-45-17s for the front and I do have tire clearance problems. It might work if I put the standard height spindles back on but with the 2" drop spindles, it is going to rub when I turn the tires. I am thinking about modifying my front fenders to give me some more clearance. Not sure what I will do yet. I have a little more time to think about it before I have to do anything.
Oh, and when fully turned, the tire on one side rubs on the sway bar and the tire on the other side rubs on the frame rail.
 
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