The purpose of this Blog

This blog is to detail my 46 years (1973 - 2019) with a 1928 Chevrolet tourer, affectionately called "The Red Chev".

The acquisition, restoration, improvements and my experiences over the years are covered in as much detail as I can remember.

Some of the later postings include car club outings and other vintage car items that I hope will be of interest to people.

If you have the time, scroll back to where it all began in 1973 and follow the journey so far.

Thanks for dropping by.

Regards Ray Dean

See my new section "The Red Chev - Repairs, Improvements, Maintenance and Technical Details" located on the left hand side of the screen.


Sunday, February 12, 2012

The beast lives. A 1938 Lasalle breathes again (with updates of 10th March 2012 and 23rd June 2012)

A mate of mine Les Francis is making very good progress on his 1938 Lasalle 4 door sedan, a true giant of a car.

I have known Les since the early 70's and he played a significant role in getting the Red Chev on the road. Those who have read my blog from the beginning would have seen Les's name mentioned on many occasions.

Over the years we drifted apart, and after catching up again in 2010, Les introduced me to the DVHCC.

The Lasalle project commenced in July 2009, and the first time I saw it was in March 2010. It certainly looked like a car that needed a full restoration. Les had every stage planned, but was not able to control the future. Neither an engine block that was too far gone to rebuild or two attempts at breaking his leg did not stop Les on his mission to bring the beast back to life. With mobility around the house, let alone the garage restricted by a leg brace, the restoration slowed, but never stopped.

On the few occasions that I have given Les a hand, it has given me an appreciation of what must have been automobile luxury back in 1938. Compared to my humble 28 Chev, everything is so big, solid and robust. And to use an old saying "There is nothing like the sound of a V8"

I look forward to seeing the Lasalle as a regular club car in a few months, and for my sake I hope I never get in his road.

"The beast lives, long live the beast" I have included a few photos of the Lasalle below.

Update Saturday 10th March 2012
Called in to give Les a hand for a few hours this afternoon and we were both pleased with the result. The Lasalle is now a few more steps closer to being completed and on the road. We were able to fit the front guards and head lights, and although not finally tweaked or tightened up it was enough to give Les a true indication of what the result of all his hard work had achieved. Combined with this was the upholstery which apart from the seats is completed and looks great. A new exhaust system tops off the progress that Les had made in the last few weeks.
Anyway enough of the words, pictures speak louder. Please find below some photos of the Lasalle after today's session.

Update 23rd June 2012 (Its Finished)

Very pleased to let you know that Les had the car passed for club permit registration on Friday 22nd June.

I saw the new baby this afternoon, and its impressive, but as I say, the pictures below will tell the story better than I can.

Well done Les, I am sure you will have many years of enjoyable, and comfortable motoring.


  1. I must have been a magnificent car in its day, even owning one would have been an event among the neighbours.

    Would like to see the front guards on for the complete "look"...

    just wonderful...

    1. I would be interested in knowing it as where it was built as General Motors of Canada limited built Chevrolet after 1918 as plant 9 and 1927 cadillac had no VIN but built LaSalle and Cadillac in Canada and McLaughlin /Buick droped the McLaughlin after 1942 as Fisher body was the Body producers for most car build ,and Ford P M O

    2. Hi Anonymous,

      All I know at this stage is the rolling chassis was imported from the States, already converted to RHD, and the body was made by General Motors Holden (Formally Holden Motor Body Works) in South Australia.

      I hope that partially answers your question.

    3. The La Salles were imported as CKD's from Detroit. They included, with a complete set of components for a running chassis, all sheet metal ahead of the front doors and the rear guards. The body shell and doors were Holden shared with Buick and other GMH models. I have always thought, in fact, that the "marriage" of the US fronts with the Holden body shell left a bit to be desired and I believe you can see it if you look long and hard enough at the two drivers side long shots above - the line from the bonnet through the doors to the rear just doesn't seem right. What a CKD kit consisted of was not consistent. GMH even imported some Cadillac 60 series and La Salles (50 series) at one stage with plywood firewalls as they sorted out how the GMH body would be matched to the US GM front panels.

      Sometimes components such as tyres, batteries and front and rear bumpers (among other things) were left out of the "Australian CKD" pack. This information came from '37 and '38 factory build sheets researched for me by a member of the US Cadillac La Salle Club.

      The Yanks always love seeing Oz Caddies and La Salles because of the all-leather upholstery - it was almost unheard of in the US but standard fare out here.