StanceWorks: ’55 Chevy Barn Find: From Trash to Truck in One Day with Deboss Garage [Ep. 2]

Posted: 2022-12-25 13:00:16
Author: StanceWorks
Be sure to check out Episode 1, and the rest of the build over on @DEBOSSGARAGE! #ApacheStroker

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Last but not least, check out the rest of the gang that helps to make this project happen:

00:00 – Coming Up!
01:27 – A Rust-Free ’55 Chevy
04:21 – The Boys Take Over the Shop
08:28 – Cutting off the Front
12:03 – Replacing the Door Hinge
17:21 – Mike Returns
20:00 – Front End Mockup
24:14 – Modifying the Fender Wells
30:56 – Tackling the Rear Suspension
34:09 – Welding it all up!

StanceWorks Video Transcript

Foreign What’s up guys you have been waiting to find out what’s going to happen with the 55 Chevy that’s been in the back of the shop for uh almost two years now uh well the answer is the guys from dubos garage have come down to the Stanford’s headquarters and we’re gonna thrash on

This thing over the next day and a half day day and we’re gonna cut the entire thing apart cut the front end off we’re putting a Camaro front end on this thing tons of new suspension components we’re gonna put a four link on the rear end

And get it rolling and out of the shop you guys are gonna what we are going to drag that then down to Pismo Beach LS swap it put a manual transmission in it get it running get it sort of legal for the road and then drive at 3 500 Miles

Home it’s easy it should be a fun project a little bit atypical for the channel but I’m excited to dive into it these guys are a who to watch if you haven’t seen their Channel head over you can watch the first episode of this build on the boss garage subscribe check

Them out they do awesome stuff across the board looking forward to it man all right let’s get into it foreign So the 55 Chevy project that I introduced all the way back in the beginning of 2021 is finally getting a new home with the boys from the boss garage and they want it for the exact same reason that I did because it’s completely rust free so let’s watch me spin this up again

I thought you know what I need to feel it so I’m not going to grab an impact just crack it loose and pull it up According to Rich and the boys who hail from Ontario Canada finding a truck with a patina like this means that the underside would be completely rusted away removing 70 year old Hardware without the use of a torch is a borderline foreign concept to these guys

But believe me when I say I was more than happy to rub it in their face that this is the status quo for Southern California given that we made quick work of disassembling the 55 getting it stripped down to just the bed the body and the bare chassis

Now for those of you that aren’t familiar with this truck or what’s even going on here I bought this project when I first started my channel just two years ago it’s been relatively low on the priority list and once I realized just how much work it was going to take

To build something I was truly happy with I decided it was probably best to pass this project on to some guys that I knew would actually see it to the finish line you see rich in the gang are familiar with a project like this one not only do

They know their way around a truck they know how to get one put together quickly which is why I didn’t hesitate to agree when they said they wanted to smash out an almost complete build in just 48 hours the only problem they wanted to get started literally on the day that I

Returned from Sema to say we were all exhausted is an understatement couldn’t really pass a safety effect if the truck as is nearly pass the safety in Canada thank you at least bring cracks in half but the e-brake still works great work look at this you could sell this Hub as a whole

To like somebody who has a 55 yeah new rubbers in the in the brake cylinder and it’s good to go clips for sale on eBay four hundred dollars some mint brake shoes still good now these are the good kind full of asbestos I can’t believe I’m saving this e-brake cable foreign

That I had just returned from SEMA I did have one other obligation that I had to attend with my recently completed Ferrari project I loaded up the trailer and took off for the evening leaving the boys behind to do what they do best I gave them free reign of the shop told

Them where every tool I could think of was and then left them to their own devices I knew they’d make some good progress but I only plan to be gone for a few hours I figured how much could they really get done Are they really just coming over again oh yeah What happens when you pull a rivet together you squeeze it so the steel inside swells inside that hole so even if you cut the head off she’s still big so an air hammer would do great text Mike see if he’s going Before we cut the front frame we’re going to level the back half and the front half on the front ears And then we are going to Level side to side and that at least we have some sort of reference to put the front when we weld the front on because we need the front ears of the Camaro to also be level so we don’t weld the suspension

Like this my alignment guy is going to free oh happy with that good cutter the issue is because our leaf spring is broken we don’t know where the exact center of it is even if even if it wasn’t broken the Springs could be sagged and we’re kind of guessing so

Best thing we thought to do is to put a level on the shackle keep the levels straight up and down that will move the axle to the same spot then we’re going to scribe from the axle center of the axle up then we’ll make a mark farther back and that way when we

Cut we can put the tire roughly in the same spot foreign Our Center mark from our axle and found a point way at the back now we have a reference point from the back so from the very back we can find our center of our new axle and we can also measure and record where our radiator support is going to go so

From our Central Point at the back that’s not going to be touched we are 69 and three quarter to the inside of this T so we can measure and make sure that our frame sits like this properly when we weld it together we also measured the

Height from the floor now that we’ve all like since we’ve leveled our frame front and back and side to side we can measure off the floor hopefully we don’t move anything but we measure from the floor down that’s 23 to the top and then because our ears might be in a different

Spot we also measure Center to Center on these radiator supports and that is 30 inches so we can pop these rivets off and then uh move these brackets over to whatever I don’t even know how that’s done we’ll figure that out afterwards but now we can cut the frame and roll it outside

And we should pretty well be done with this Andy Sawzall King describe it so we just saw us all everything With no fear the debasking cut the entire front of the truck clean off nothing in front of the cab mounts is important from here on out including the engine because this one is going directly in the trash it’s completely useless [Laughter] I think we’re supposed to do again

All right so we’ve removed the stock 55 front suspension that’s because the leaf springs are broken and they handle terrible they would not be able to keep you in a straight line if you’re going to do an engine upgrade so we have to upgrade the suspension somehow the best

Economical way that we saw that is to take a second gen Camaro or Firebird subframe and weld that right to the frame of the 55. a couple things to keep in mind you will have to worry about your ad support and your Bumper Mount but that is not the biggest thing the

Biggest thing is trying to get it square and true to the frame so that your frame isn’t sitting like this that that This Way Forward back there’s a lot of measurements you got to do but it’s straightforward and we want to show you guys how to do it we’re going to upgrade

The suspension a little bit on the Camaro they’re much better than the 55 but they’re not fantastic the geometry is a little off casters um a little bit off so it doesn’t handle as good as it could but you don’t have to this can be done on a very simple

Budget these are anywhere from 300 to 800 depending on on what’s in your area and it will greatly increase your stability and suspension smoothness of the ride and um because there’s a lot of aftermarket support for LS swaps into Camaros you can get bolt-on kits if you

Wanted to do an LS swap then we’re going to rebuild the engine and and stick a new transmission in it um because we like going into the nitty gritty and we’re going to show you that whole process doesn’t mean that you have to you can go to junkyard and grab a

5360 and just throw that in there have tons of fun with it as it is in the stock Camaro suspension we’re going to try and cram in a little bit more when you do put the weight of the truck and the engine and transmission on this the

Geometry of this will change where those tires end up so most people weld them forward a little bit and then as the weight comes on those tires roll back a little bit so about three quarter inch to an inch if we can get four or five

Guys to stand on there and compress it maybe we’ll try and weld it so that it stays put into that spot and um and then we can don’t have to worry about how much changes we can put these tires exactly where the old ones were now you

Could take this and stick it right underneath the frame cut yours front frame rail so it kind of butts up onto here and then you can just weld it on the bottom that kind of looks like a hack job we don’t really want to do that

So we’re going to gusset on the inside clean that up really nice flare it out a little bit so that it matches the side of the frame rails properly so first things first we’re going to roll this out You’re Gonna Roll the other parts out and uh get to work way better

Rich keeps saying these California bolts don’t rot but we broke off three so let’s let them soak tonight and get him out in the morning now keep in mind this is all still progress that’s happening in the handful of hours I’ve been away from the shop

All in one single evening to say these guys work quick is an understatement okay so the bottom hinge was completely shot um and it’s funny that the steel on the sides is in great shape it just pulled out on the back of it so what I did was

I cut a piece of Steel out of um some Square Tubing that we had in the shop I’m gonna put this down in the bottom here like so I took the top hinge off of the door because it was easy to get at so you can see where the edge of

The door is and I’m close and I’m adjustable anyway so but basically the edge of the door is right there we’ll double check that on the other side I’m going to use the passenger doors reference as to the height of this even though that is adjustable on the hinge here you can see

The slots in there so I can make the hinge go up and down on the truck side and on the door side I can make the hinge go this way so I’m just going to use some spray paint we got a spray paint bomb that’ll Mark where the holes

Are going to go then I’m going to drill where the paint is weld nuts on the back and then weld this in place put the door back on super simple those three and five eighths from the edge of the door to the edge of the bracket so from here to there

Three and seven sixteenths from the bottom of the door to the bottom of the hinge so I might have to get that goes there all right nice so now just drill in the middle of that and then weld the nuts in the bottom Okay so they can slide so I’ll bolt them down now and then just pack them with the MIG welder and then a weld installer now for a bit of clarification when I say this truck is completely rust free it’s completely rust free for a truck that’s sat in a field for 30 years

There were a few spots that needed attention the main one being the lower door hinge on the driver’s side door pocket but instead of over engineering a fix that takes days to complete like I would do rich knocked out a solution in the matter of an hour Oh There we go thank you now it’s just moving the hinges back and forth until it’s sort of closed but all my butt holes line up so that’s exciting I gotta go in a hair more that’s not bad I’m gonna leave it alone for now until we torque it back down

Again and then I’ll fine-tune the last a little bit top needs to come in a bit that way the bottom can come out of here but my uh my gaps are okay my Gap is okay here if anything we can go ahead forward but that’ll do for now

Now you may have been wondering what’s going on with all of the grinding going on in the background and the answer is we want this thing to be clean enough to paint once the time comes there’s 70 years worth of dirt and rust we’ve got

To take care of so just uh one last thing before we go I’m just gonna clean up a bunch of these welds because they are just terrible I don’t know whether it was Factory or somebody just had a terrible day and didn’t care but there’s splatter all over the place no

Penetration and that probably was fine for the Camaro at its time but we’re gonna add a little bit of horsepower so we’re gonna add a little weld Thank you really good yeah comes off Supreme’s cut put a new piece of Steel in the back as well a couple nuts to the back of it check that out all right so this is the end of day one Mike is back he had uh some stuff to do

With the Ferrari and SEMA so he was gracious enough to give us a shot but tomorrow we get Mike’s expertise on helping keep this thing square and straight so we’ll be right back and it will be tomorrow and my eyes won’t be bloodshot and I won’t be slurring my

Words because I’m really tired here we go all right it’s a new day I’m done with all the Ferrari stuff we’re back in the shop as said these guys got all the dirty work done thankfully uh saved me a lot of effort but now we’ve got to take

This front clip attach it to the 55 Chevy Chassis we need the front wheels of this thing to be about 50 inches or 50 and three quarters in front of a line that we previously put on the chassis so now we’ve got to do some careful measurements we need to make sure that

This chassis is square and that it’s true it’s plum just make sure that it’s all right because once we stick it to the old chassis it’s kind of one and done so the nice thing is no matter if we weld the frame this way that way forward backward still going to handle

Better than stock especially considering it had a completely broken leaf springs so yeah let’s uh let’s get this thing up in the air let’s start cutting let’s welded and uh hope that by the end of tonight maybe we could have it on the ground I that you know what that would be incredible

Because we’re actually ahead of schedule I can’t believe I’m saying that but we’re ahead of schedule so we’re feeling good we had the book the trailer rental for a day earlier but if we could have it rolling tonight holy crap that is that is incredible all right let’s go

Come on let’s get this out of the way so this Dimension is eyeballed 25 inches from Wheel Center Line yep but then measuring from the back I just eyeballed each side and then came back to measured from the back of the chassis up it’s 28 and three quarters pretty spot on what

If we put the level on it make a mark on the tire and then go across the tide I think I have a laser we could put a uh just run a line straight across the top of the wheel center line foreign Tires so that’s got to be Center in the wheel well the issue is that when the suspension compresses the tires go back about three quarter to an inch it’s a long yeah let’s start over [Laughter] start foreign the 71 front end to the 55 chassis but

The way we want to accomplish it is as close to factory as we can conjure while knocking the whole project out in a matter of two days by interlocking the two chassis one inside of the other we can get a lot of overlap and therefore a lot of strength

From the two existing parts but if we want the truck to track correctly we’ve got to get everything as straight as possible good these rivets also held the bracket for the clutch we’re going with a hydraulic clutch so rather than taking them out because they swell in there I just

Grinded the heads off the back of it I’ll just grind them flush and then just weld them again because they’re tight and they haven’t moved nice uh quickest way to keep those keep the cab Mount secure the job I was tasked with was successfully mating the two chassis together

After making sure the front chassis was true straight and Plumb I cut a pair of long notches that can slide inside of the 55’s chassis rails so that we can weld everything thoroughly as you might guess this was a measure twice and then measure again before cutting anything because if we mess this

Up it requires a lot of surgery to correct any material we cut off that we wind up needing would need to be re-added to make sure the whole thing can go together appropriately this is the disappointment in the guy that works on Imports the chassis that

Was in the Ferrari is 10 times worse than this is better yeah really nastiest crap you’ve ever seen really interesting so I just like talking [ __ ] yeah Oh my goodness yeah there’s gonna be a bunch of guys going Detroit diesels there’s also the chance that these rails pink went like that once we cut the back end of it off you know what I mean oh yeah yeah no more more than likely

That’s why I said we’ve got lots of flex with it so let’s grab some c-clamps clamp it in and uh see where we’re at as long as we’re tight on the bottom of the frame rails yep we should we’re fine all right got it Loosely where you want

It if I tighten this down yeah I like butter I cut this wide knowing we need more than we need less I could see your luck of disappointment like what happened that took zero effort to clamp that fight cool all right take some measurements what do

We do for this way we could probably pick it down like yeah lifting that back that so that’s that’s the tricky part we can change the Caster like crazy but but even still it’s only it’s only this much so even even if you’re off a couple

Inches it’s not in short we’ve got this extra distance on our on our wheelbase yeah so if there were 26 and 7 16s okay and then yeah from here to here is 25 so we can cut it off of this so we can cut it off of this that seemed

Easier so if we know these are going to stay where they’re at we could take another piece of uh box tubing and finish the Box in yeah on that side let’s do that let’s do that because then we’ve got the support yeah that can’t like rip up then either right yeah yeah

Let’s do that okay cool with our final measurements figured out we put our game plan into action and made our Final Cuts we cleaned up all of our edges and prepped them for welding and made sure that all of the exposed steel was ground down to a new Fresh layer

With everything prepped we slid the front end into his final resting place and then we took one more round of measurements and made sure everything was level before we welded it into place Ready one two three I got mine lined up okay you’re on the whole thing is okay where is the uh you’re good you’re just I think you’re catching that uh material on that ship you got it okay we got it okay we’re good yep Are the rubber is in the back next up what happened Today We got a lot of interference because yeah this isn’t even so hmm maybe it was better that we measure uh yeah you know what no no because this is all one piece but we can we can go off that mount um that mount goes onto that Fender

There right the inner Fender right there Now before permanently attaching the two halves to the chassis by welding them completely we decided we should test fit the front end and make sure everything is going to clear after all it’s imperative that the front wheels line up perfectly in the middle of the front wheel arches

After a bit of bending cutting and tweaking eventually the front wheel wells fit over the new independent front suspension but only just yeah so a lot of that’s extra Yeah I’m still hidden right foreign we removed and reinstalled the front end more than a dozen times before we felt like there was enough clearance in the wheel wells that we could actually send this thing down the road after all the front suspension needs to articulate and

Not hit any sheet metal or it’s going to clunk as this thing gets driven let’s throw a bolt in if we can get a bolt in that top I’m gonna throw the tires on it make sure the wheels are kind of in the middle right and then we’re then we’re

Rocking so we might as well like all this is is the fenders all the way back doesn’t matter if it’s tilted up or down throw the tires on Super Tires it So we’ve got the whole front end clamped into place it’s tacked together we’ve got the front wheels positioned in the fender Wells now it’s just a matter of kind of shimming it into place I think we’re going to move everything forward about a half inch to get it all perfect

Because as the front wheels articulate they’re going to move back in the wheel wells about three quarters of an inch I want to make sure that when the weight is on the car it looks proper so with that I think we’re going to now move to

The back end of the car we want to make sure that our wheelbase is accurate before we lock anything into place in the front we have to get the rear set up mocked up and in place yeah so we got this kit from Summit um Heights makes this uh so it’s just a

Bracket but what it does is utilize the spring shackle rivet holes you have to drill them out a little bit um and of course make sure that they all line up might have to tweak one hole a little bit here and there but once we’ve got the brackets on the front we can

Position our axle in the back make sure that our four links are all the same height and then from there we can measure forward again to the center line of our tires and make sure that the front isn’t cocked like that now Mike’s pretty good so I have complete

Confidence in them because it’s been going really really smooth that’s great that’s very brave of you I appreciate the confidence yeah we also want to kind of see height wise where we’re at because the truck’s sitting a little lower than we expected now we’re going to put much bigger tires on it so

We should be okay but we might have to end up sea notching the the frames I don’t think we do but we’ll throw everything together see where we’re at and then make our decisions as we go because that’s how it’s been working so far so it’s working pretty good awesome

All right we are on this truck now for a solid 24 hours and this is how far we’ve come I I’m very ecstatic in 24 hours I mean like we’ve been on one day and we went to the hotel and actually slept a good night’s sleep too yeah so we

Understand so anybody that watches my channel knows I’m uh I’m a slow Guy this is definitely the fastest thing that’s ever happened in this shop and it’s definitely fun to be a part of we’re uh we’re just flying through it these guys are crazy so so we are gonna paint the chassis a

Little bit after my first stolen we’re going with a matte black I actually like the matte black With everything mocked up on the chassis side we need to get the axle test fitted into place so that we can measure both its alignment with the chassis itself and get the pinion angle perfect runs at full droop so if we set this one up same height in an ideal scenario that

Would be bulletproof back here yeah yeah take the front brush tire put it on the left and put the same distance to the floor as the front tire on the left that’ll tell us our ride height then we can figure out the shock length and then that’ll get us somewhere close to the

Opinion we got to go up way up right that’s a 90. that’s kind of what I had I had done yeah so if it’s if it’s two degrees as long as the the incline between them isn’t also two degrees so that you don’t start in line with each other then it’s okay yeah There you go okay now we’re 178. oh that’s two degrees no 180 yeah 178.8 it’s got to go foreign Angle on our pinion as it sits right now we kind of checked it throughout the travel make sure that our bars are all the same length we’re still just gonna tack that we’re going to weld that solid solid until we have our transmission in we if we run intuitions with pinion

Angle that’s something that’s annoying all the time so we’ll be blowing new joints finally by feeling vibrations in our seat we don’t want that On it so we see like a little weight on this one so what we’re trying to work out right now is exactly what the right height of the truck is going to be the main problem being we don’t actually have the proper wheels and tires on hand

So we’re kind of shooting in the dark but we’re going off some kind of Base numbers some base assumptions and assuming we’re probably going to have a 28 inch diameter tire so what that involves right now is getting the axle the proper height off of the floor and

Then we also want to make sure that the truck is roughly at the right height that we want so we can set everything up correctly once this thing is sitting on the ground we kind of mismatch everything right now if we miss shoot we’re going to wind up with some

Suspension problems and we don’t want that so ideally we’re going to get this all set up correctly based on some guesses but I think we all feel pretty good about it yeah fingers crossed now we just got to set our wheelbase make sure that the front is positioned

Exactly where we want it that’s why we set this up everything looks pretty good we’re going to move the front forward about a half inch and then finish welding unfortunately we did not get the shocks for the back and it’s probably not a bad deal because we might have to move this

Um out because our ride height is so low this is not a lot of difference here I have a feeling we’re going to need to move this up quite a bit in order to have an appropriate length shock in place At this point in the build it seems like it’s finally time to start laying down some welds everything is straight true and level we need to burn it into place and commit to what we have now as the viewers of my channel know I haven’t touched the MIG welder in a long

Time but after a bit of discussion for some reason these guys decided I should Don the hood and burn everything into place if you have a piece to go to fill in uh So instead of making a single one we’re gonna fill the entire tube the entire C with square tube it’s going to be so strong it’s gonna be awesome when we jump it So this is just for the remnant Pokemon we want this nice and tight against the frame if there’s a head of a rivet there so we’ll just uh see some space for that so we got everything all welded it’s fully in place it’s not going anywhere I

Feel pretty good about it the way that we decided to do this was to essentially as you guys saw earlier I kind of cut an L shape into the 71 Camaro subframe we slid that into the 55 chassis and then we use some 2×3 Square stock slid in

Between them to kind of box everything in cut it all to Contour really nice and then we capped it with a piece of original chassis so that it’s all kind of contiguous and flows like it was kind of made that way I wouldn’t say that it necessarily looks Factory but I don’t

Think that anybody that winds up back in this wheel well is ever going to say man that was thrown together this thing is super Stout I feel really good about it I can send these guys down the road feeling confident that uh whatever trouble they get into next it’s gonna stand up to

And check this out I’m pretty stoked about that yeah you really couldn’t ask for it to uh to go better especially with how quick it went would we say one day in four hours including about eight hours one hour and one day at two hours one day and two

Hours 46 and a half hours we disassembled the whole track put the four link on fixed the hinge on the door clean and strip the entire frame so it’s ready for paint and then uh prepped the whole front assembly and have the front yeah the whole front’s clearanced it

Fits it all bolts back on Axel uh is all welded up it’s this is pretty pretty impressive you guys you guys were quick so dude we appreciate everything man we really appreciate your shop and uh it was awesome hanging out got a little bit more to do yet I’m

Gonna have to check that out on our channel the boss garage where uh we drag it down to a different part of California and keep working on it yeah so make sure you guys head back to the boss garage’s Channel you can finish this build there once the next episode

Goes up I’m excited to see how this goes this is uh I feel invested in at this point hopefully you guys do uh this should be sweet so awesome thanks a lot man appreciate it you’re awesome and I hope we can do this again something something new if you want like a really

Quick job that you need like some some hustling Canadians call the Canadians we’ll be out right on guys foreign