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.


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

1933 Chev ( A Nice Example)

This little beauty is on Ebay

 Here for sale is a 1933 Chevrolet Master 4 Door. This is a completely original vehicle. The only thing not original is the color of the wheels. They were orange and I had them painted black and installed new tubes and Firestone WW tires.

The motor is a 6 cylinder,single carb. The transmission is the original 3 speed manual stick on the floor. The car was in running order before I put it in storage and pulled the starter motor out of it back in June 2010. I had it running the day I pulled the starter. I bought this 33 back in 2000 and drove it home, so it could be rolling without a problem.

The interior was complete when I bought it, but I have removed the headliner and door panels. they were original and dried out(mohair). The canvas roof has been removed as well. The seats are solid. The body and floor is rust-free.All of the original glass is intact (left rear cracked).

I have replaced the following parts: tires,tubes,ignition switch NOS,6 volt coil NOS,rebuilt fuel pump NOS parts,new battery,and I have new brake lining(not installed). Very Complete Car! Everything Works! Buyer responsible for transporting vehicle once paid for.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Saturday, October 27, 2012

USA 1935 - 1939. During some tough Times


This was just a mere 70 years ago...

It sort of makes complaining about no mobile phone service, high gasoline prices, not
enough cable channels, etc., all seem a bit ludicrous.

How long have you owned a car?


Mr. Allen Swift ( Springfield , MA.) received this 1928 Rolls-Royce Picadilly P1 Roadster from his father, brand new in 1928.

He drove it up until his death in 2005... at the age of 102!!!

He was the oldest living owner of a car from new.

Just thought you'd like to see it.

He donated it to a Springfield museum after his death.

It has 1,070,000 miles on it, still runs like a Swiss watch, dead silent at any speed and is in perfect cosmetic condition. (82 years)

That's approximately 13,049 miles per year...

Following is the listing from the Springfield Museum

New Springfield History Museum Made Possible by Connecticut Entrepreneur

General Museum News

January 30, 2006
The Springfield Museums have received a gift of $1,000,000 from Mr. Allen Swift of West Hartford to purchase the Verizon building at 85 Chestnut Street in Springfield for the purpose of creating a new history museum. Swift also donated his 1928, one-owner, Springfield-built Rolls-Royce automobile to form the basis of the new museum's transportation collection.

Swift, who died in October 2005 at the age of 102, was a legend among Rolls-Royce collectors for owning his green Phantom I, S273 FP Rolls longer than anyone in the world had ever owned an individual Rolls-Royce. In recognition of that fact, Rolls-Royce Motors presented him with a crystal Spirit of Ecstasy award at the Rolls-Royce Annual Meeting in 1994.

Swift and the Springfield Museums were brought together through a network of antique automobile collectors. In 2002, when he was 99 years old, he approached the Museums to discuss finding a new home for his Rolls-Royce. Confident in the Springfield Museums' ability to care for the automobile and to tell the story of Rolls-Royce manufacturing in Springfield, Swift indicated that he would donate his car if a building could be found to house it.

In the summer of 2005, the Springfield Museums became aware that the Verizon building, adjacent to the Museums, was available for purchase. Joseph Carvalho, president of the Springfield Museums, and Guy McLain, director of the Connecticut Valley Historical Museum, shared that information with Swift and described how the building could be converted into a museum. In September, Swift's attorney informed the Museums that Swift would donate the money to purchase the building.

The Springfield Museums will take possession of the building in June and will launch a fund-raising campaign to renovate it. When complete, the new Museum of Springfield History will display wide range of remarkable artifacts that tell the rich and multidimensional history of this city.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Very Proud to say "This Guy is a Mate of mine"

The following posting is from Monty the 1928 Chev

Our 1928 Chev is now registered - We made it!! 


Today I walked out of the "Vicroads" vehicle registration office in Warragul with the correct papers in one hand and my "WF 1928" black and white Victorian number plates in the other to make old Monty a fully road registered vehicle once again after many years of sitting idle, plus I might add that there was a large grin of achievement stamped across my face....

I always said the first place I would drive the Chev to when I got it registered was up to the Trafalgar cemetery with a couple of cold beers, admire the view and have a quiet one, well that did happen today.

Many thanks must go to each and every one of you that have looked in on this blog from time to time over the last couple of years, it really just started as an idea one night to keep dads memory going, to keep his face up on the computer as it was only a few months after his passing.

I had very simple intentions for this car when I first got it running back in November 2010 as I was completely happy with just getting it started and driving it out of dads workshop and out into the sunlight for a better look, maybe give it a little clean up and then put it over in our signshop and start to workout a few things about it, then drive it occasionally around the block on Sunday mornings, the fact that it was moving again was enough for me and the thought of this dismantling this car into bits and rebuilding everything again was just too big a project get my head around, it sort of hurt just thinking about it at the time being just a novice mechanic who played around with motorcycles.

At the time a source of help and information was dads brother "Digger Fowler" who could confirm a few things about its originality and also that the mileage on the speedo which was showing 10,400 miles was correct, uncle also knew the location of the Hill End farm where dad had brought it from, a trip a few months later we would both take together and locate the property and talk to the neighbour of the original owner, so thanks uncle for your help once again.

After a month or so I started to develop itchy feet as the fascination with the Chev began to take hold and I soon found myself trawling the internet for 1928 vintage car forums and information, I soon built up a friendship on an American Chevrolet site with a bloke 100kms down the road in Melbourne called Ray Dean who had a fully restored 1928 Chevrolet.
Ray at the time was very helpful with discussing any problem that I had with the car and also Ray was a little curious I was later to learn as he was very keen to come out from the city and have a look at this original "barnfind" Chevy with the low mileage that I spoke of, which he did one Sunday morning when I noticed an immaculately restored burgundy and black 28' Chev quietly appeared in our driveway and after the first meeting a very good friendship based on car talking bullshit and Aussie banter soon developed.

Ray I cannot thank you enough mate for your unbelievable knowledge of these old vehicles and for all of your help both with your spare time on weekends with the many hours spent in the resto shed and with your time tracking down and locating parts on the internet., for your support over the phone when things went a little "up shit creek" from time to time and for your encouragement in just keeping the restoration moving forward and getting it finished.

From myself, Lisa, our kids and the Fowler family Ray, thank you very much mate, such a great effort and send me that invoice one day when you remember that you keep talking about.. Cheers Mate

Well that's about it from me, I am hanging up my blog for awhile, I have personally achieved a goal that I dreamt about as a young kid and now I need to step back for a bit and have some Sundays with Lisa and kids who have been great while this all has been going on around them and I love them for helping it happen.
I will post a photo from time to time about any trips that unfold in Monty that we make, but I have done what I wanted to achieve but only in a much shorter time, to be honest when I started I thought maybe it would take 4 or 5 years but not 16 bloody months. I now have a lovely "patina" style vintage car to drive, maintain and get enjoyment from for the rest of my life and I know dad would be very proud and happy with the end result and as true to his word, I stuck to his wishes.

"We'll get it running, but we're not painting it all fancy".

In Memory Of Our Father Wayne Fowler 1939 - 2010

"A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others."

Thank you - Grant Fowler

Below is a repeat of the first page that I wrote on this blog back in November 2010, explaining why this restoration was happening.

It's something that just happens in life, it probably already has happened to you, if not, then it will and you cannot escape it. one day everything changes so quickly...

Our family experienced a roller-coaster ride on the "Leukaemia Express" from May until the 14th July 2010 when my father Wayne Fowler, a very active, fit and only at the age of 71 years was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of AML Leukaemia dad lasted just 6 weeks & life changed so quickly for us all.
Dad was very active, ate healthy, enjoyed people, looked forward to his yearly month long camping & fishing trips up north in the "Gulf Country" of Australia with his brothers and best mate George, 30 trips in total I think they done over the years, yes dads sudden illness was a big shock to our family, friends and also the local township of Trafalgar where he lived for all his 71 yrs.

Dad worked with his older brother "Digger" in their own business "Fowler & Sons" shifting & relocating entire buildings & houses across Victoria and also hiring out a fleet of cranes for more than 50 years up until they both retired and sold up the business in 1997. It was during these earlier years that dad came across an old Chev sitting out under a lovely big shady tree in a farmers paddock near the small township of " Hill End" 30kms north of Trafalgar towards Mount Baw Baw but the Chev was minus the front axle, dad got talking to the owner about the Chev, "I've ripped out the front axle & wheels and put it over there under that old farm trailer to use for the hay", well they both came to an agreement, dad would replace the farm trailer axle with one that he had back in the workshop and put the original axle and wheels back under "Monty", dad returned to the farm a few days later with the help of his dad & his brother Digger to switch the axles over and bring the Chev back into Trafalgar on the back of the truck where it would find its new home in the old workshop of "Fowler & Sons" Kitchener Street Trafalgar, I was 3 at the time and my brother 5 years of age....
One thing I can tell you is that mum was none to happy to see it being taken off the back of the truck and driven into the shed, it cost dad 60 pounds in total to claim his name to the Chev, mum was not too pleased.

Over the past forty years Dad and uncle Digger worked very long hours, away for weeks shifting and relocating buildings, what spare time dad did get was mostly on a Sunday and he would use this time to enjoy himself with mum & us kids in the garden and his large veggie patch, while always keeping a close eye on the workshop directly across the road from our house as work always came first, dad loved his job and lived for the business so the old Chev just sat there collecting dust in the workshop. Dad never wanted to sell it, he had a good few offers but always said "No sorry, I won't be selling it day"....

As a kid I was always playing in & roaming about the old workshop, shadowing my father while he worked, I'd get covered in grease and years of old thick dust which seemed to of blanketed everything, climbing up in the old timber loft was an adventure where I would then climb all over the unused truck tyres which were lined up a long rows to reach the large timber air vents that run along the full length of the workshop wall where I would stare down out our house across the road and call out a bit of cheek to a passer-by walking along the footpath knowing that if things got a bit heated I had dad directly under me repairing a truck or welding up some sort of machinery, he would be there for backup, but things never got that far...

For years we played around the workshop and the Chev was always parked in the same spot, jacked up on timber blocks as the workshop had a hard packed dirt floor and sitting directly beside the big old bench saw and arc welder but "Monty" did have some sort of purpose at "Fowler & Sons" and that was to store all the large heavy canvas building tarps inside & on top of him to a point where you couldn't see a car at all from 10 feet away and when you are a little kid trying for the life of you to move some of these tarps, balancing with one foot while standing on the large black running boards of the car just to have a peek inside it was impossible, god knows I tried it many times but the best I could always see was the old wooden steering wheel & a row of dusty unreadable dials on the dashboard which I would quickly give it a few turns, make some loud engine noises and jump back down again, often in time with dads voice who had just walked around the corner to grab some more welding rods only to catch me out, "Hey what are you doing muscles, get down from there!"
Dad did however bring "Monty" out into the sunlight on 3 occasions that I can remember over those 40 odd years and it was always with laughter and a bit of fun from the other blokes in the workshop who would quickly be lining up for a ride and a quick few laps around the workshop yard and then back in the workshop he would go and park it up against the old rusted corrugated iron wall making way for the dust to start gathering and laying down another 10 years worth of thickness on it until next time the same routine is played out for a bit of light entertainment...

So that brings us up to this present day, November 9th 2010, nearly 5 months since dad past away and I want to bring "Monty" out from the darken workshop and do what dad probably would of wanted to do all those years ago but just didn't have the spare time to do it and I think about this a lot while looking back over his life and the last thing that dad would of wanted to do after having spent all week driving trucks, cranes and then fixing and repairing them late into the night over in the workshop so that they could be back out on the road for work the next morning at 6am to earn a dollar while already have working a 12 hr day out on the job up to his knees in mud or crawling under buildings, I am pretty sure that the last thing he would of felt like doing was restoring a bloody old car in his spare time, as it was not through his lack of ability or mechanical knowledge either, but he did not want to part with it just the same...

Lets just clear one thing up, the name "Monty" how and why?.I have only just started calling the car this over the last month to my wife & kids and the name as stuck, dad didn't call it anything, "Monty" was dads father name "Monty Fowler" and dad was "Montague Wayne Fowler" so I thought why the hell not, it's very fitting and beside he looks like an old "Monty"....

Monty is a 1928 Chevrolet - National Tourer with only 10,400 original miles on the speedo, mechanical it is "all there", only a little rust in the rear body, but 90% of the woodwork and the interior is stuffed but I have time on my hands and a willingness to learn and also a little dream burning away in the back of my head to turn it into a roadworthy, drivable, cute little "Sunday" car that it is......We'll just wait and see.

Yesterday, Tuesday 9th November 2010, I organized a mate to come around to dads workshop and have a go at cranking it over, I tried the weekend before but I'm just a bit hesitant in case I burnt or shorted something out with not knowing what and how to start it but before this happened Uncle Digger who by the way had owned one of these when he was a young fella to roar around the Gippsland hills in told me that the mileage was correct and that it is mechanically "all there" and would turnover easily, he was correct.

Trevor arrived with his toolbox, tested this and that with his electrical gauge and you know some blokes are just a natural with machinery and the way Trevor made his way around an engine block with his head buried right down in amongst layers of grease he reminded me of dad as he rigged up a gravity fed fuel line to bypass the "autovac" fuel system which uncle digger had warned me was trouble, we sorted out the dials and switches on the dash which was all very simple when you have someone that's knows what they are doing.

After about 30 minutes Trevor calls out "Kick it in the guts now Grant", so with me behind the old wooden steering wheel with my bum squashed down on the old metal spring bench seat and looking through the dusty front windscreen I braced myself as I pressed my left foot down on the starter button, it wound over, fired up and jumped to life straight away, we both roared laughing as Trevor looked up from under the bonnet, old "Monty" sat there purring and was idling away so sweetly. We both could not believe how strong and responsive the little 4 cylinder engine was, there was no smoke blowing and as we had the back wheels jacked up off the ground they were turning slowly so Trevor got in and went through all 3 gears, "the gearbox feels nice and tight" he called out, it was just lovely to hear the Chev running again after all these years but this time it will not be parked back up on blocks in the darken workshop, "dad it is staying out of there"

I will keep dads word, mechanically it will be kept running nicely and always on the battery charger so that I can push the starter button anytime and it will "fire up", body wise kept as it is "original" and in a state of "patina", the interior well time will tell but reupholstered in an old looking leather finish which I'm not to sure how to achieve this but there are many cluey people around the Gippsland area with vintage vehicles of all types so the contacts are easy to find as over the years I have signwritten and pinstriped many old restored trucks and I am always bumping into these people.

This will be a long term hobby but please do drop by from time to time to have a read or call by the workshop for a chat anytime.

Mum and Dad

Monday, October 22, 2012

Monty is finished. RWC passed. Registration next.

To the good people of Trafalgar. Lock up your animals, dont park your cars on the side of the road, and make sure your you look left, right and left again when you cross the street.


Because Monty the 1928 Chevrolet will be back on the roads tomorrow the 24th October 2012 after an absence of over 50 years.

Grant's last job will be rocking up to the local Vic Roads office with his Road Worthy Certificate in hand, and walk out a few minutes later with a road registered 1928 Chevrolet National Tourer.