The purpose of this Blog

This blog is to detail my 43 years (1973 - 2016) 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.


Saturday, April 4, 2015

"Gatsby" the 1928 Chev from Blacktown, Sydney, New South Wales - Update (its now finished and running fine)

Danny Harris emailed me today with the final restoration installments for Gatsby the 1928 Chev

Before the latest posting, the story so far is

Now for the update as at 4th April 2015

June 2014
Ok Still doing the trim, found out that I was missing the piece of wood that goes most away around the back, my first thought was that I don’t need it…. but then when I sat the back rear seat in, I noticed it was sitting up higher, about the size of the timber that should have been there, so I got a length of Tassy oak and started to trace and cut it to the shape of the car. It was a lot of hard work for my jigsaw, but I had to do with what I had. I used a piece of 32x60mm and cut the 60 down to 40mm to fit the shape. cut and shape, cut and shape…..oh and the flapper disc helped heaps around the corners of the wood.

It is a shame that the car has some nice wood in it, yet most of it will all be covered.. well I have an idea on that.. stay tuned.
As for the seats I got hold of some brand new padding that was to be used to line elevators during service, cut it to shape and covered each seat as a backing over the springs first, this was done with hog ties… the padding looked like it was made from like a horses hair with scotch guarded cotton drill on each side ..
The car also came with a sun visor, but no glass in it ( I am told it was to have a green glass with circle patterns in it) I went to an acrylic/Perspex place and got a new smoke tinted piece cut for $35


July 2014

Windscreen arrived , when going to take the screws out for the top frame sides, I found that they were rusted in, Getting the arms of the side window frame un done was impossible,  I guessing they haven’t been undone in 90 years? So I had to drill them out and re tap the thread, another new thing I learnt. I put the rubber around the glass some sealant in the frame, then put the glass and rubber into the frame, I strapped it up around the sides  over night. 

With the wood around the back, I put a thin foam under and up the back and only half way across the top, my theory was that when I did the seat trim on the front half this would then leave a flat surface for the trim to sit. I was also lucky enough to get a piece of the cow long enough to go all the way around in one piece .


Ok most the trim finished, but I am not happy with my sewing on the door pocket flaps, so I may have to re do them, the rest of the car came up better than I expected for an armature’s first and second last go.

With the door trims, I sewed a square 4cm in around, my theory there was that I had somewhere to tack the nails to the wood, however knowing I would have to take them off again to re-do the pockets, I ditched the nail idea and I bought some small plastic Christmas tree clips and drilled a 10mm deep hole near the corners to hold them. yeah ok I know its not the original way to do it, but no one will ever see, they sit tight and I can get them off again with ease.
Mmm What is this…..oh well …

Not even finished yet and I was able to pick up my first bit of pussy in it today, at least he likes the soft seat ..(covered in a picnic rug to protect the leather from him)
Door boards were cut out of a redicoat Masonite, it’s a masonite that has a semi waterproof white coating on one  side. I cut them to shape then sat them in the car with the seats in before drawing the pocket hole, this way I was assured the flaps would open in the car while the doors are closed. The doors also got the thin layer of foam under the leather. (white side on the other side )

Then it was a matter of following the Blue chalk line a drew on, sewing the leather to the foam.
Now  for the wood idea… As I said earlier I was unhappy that the car has so much wood in it, yet I have just covered it all up!, firstly I wasn’t sure if I was going to have enough leather for everything, so my first thought was to put thin wood behind the front seat. My second thought was to put a wood trim around the back and back sides, after all leather and wood go sweet together. And this is the result, again the purist will hate it, and probably hate me for doing it
Carpet.. ok done this much my self.. I don’t really want to go and pay to get carpet edge trimmed as new off cuts this size for the whole car are next to nothing, so what I did was used the same wood trim for the edge of the carpet, this also made a weather lip, as my sills didn’t have that standard lip on them.

The difference of color is one is with the flash on and one without…
Well… What do you think???
August 2014
Windscreen ready to go in, when putting it in a had a hint from a club member to make sure that the posts are pulled back tight before tightening them, as later if I was to get a canopy measured up, it would help prevent it from moving and sagging, so I put a couple of straps on it pulled it firm before tightening the bolts.
Ok windscreen in, Trim done, Brand new mirror $15, Brand new Wiper $25(filling Station)
The next thing I had to do was to get it ready for registration.. I am choosing to start of with Club Registration. I laid under the car for hours checking every bolt and putting in what felt like 100 new split pins. A couple of new grease nipples, finish of the wiring adjusting the brake light switch… ect.
Wiring… after I cleaned the headlights and put the 6v H3 halogens’ in… I went to solder the old wiring to the light socket and to my surprise the heat of the soldering iron started to flame down the original cloth wiring.. so I quickly decided not to use the original wiring harness and opted for black trailer wire instead. This was neat , and also gives me spare wires if I decide to ad Blinkers later on.
Tires….these all have good or new tread , however some are starting to show slight cracks on the sides, I am not sure which are the best or newest tires, I bought 2 brand new tyres and will wait until I drive it around for a day and see which of the tires I got with the car start to crack and replace them.
Horn…. the horn with the car has no cover over the back, (still need to get one) and instead of sounding like the old Aaarrrhoooogah .. it sounds more like a sick duck! …Quack. But it works and should pass for Registration, I had to get a new horn button but got an old brass tap block off fitting and made that to fit for now, I also had to soak down the center of the steering column for a few days with wd40 and hammer a steel BBQ squire down the center to get all the foreign particles out, probably the old wire, but finally was able to thread a new wire down with ease.
Body Number… I had to stamp the engine number on the body, I could get a pack of number stamps for $22 but letter stamps were about $70 and I only needed 1 letter once.. luckily a truck place next to my work had the stamps and I didn’t had to buy any..        Stamped and done.
Going for Registration..

Attempt one….I live on a hill and while adjusting and testing the brakes at home, I was unhappy when I went off down the hill.. so back home again and adjust all the brakes to perfection..
Attempt Two…. Of we go.. 1/2 way there and it stops, I check and there was no petrol in the vacuum tank.. my first thought was the vacuum tank wasn’t working (remember I have only driven to the letter box and back before) but then the good news the petrol tank was empty, this was good news as I now Know that the vacuum tank was working fine and has sucked up the 10 liters I had put in the back months ago while running it. luckily a petrol station just behind me
Attempt three… Stopped ….blocked carby, well I guess this is what happens when you let the tank run dry on a 86 year old car, so I cleaned out the carby , re adjusted the float.. and I guess I need to install a fuel filte
I must say its starting to look good though even when stopped on the side of the road.
Attempt  fourmade it the 3 kms to the motor mechanic and guess what! it passed , first go.. 
After I got home and check a few things I notice that the radiator was near empty, it was leaking out of the front of the water pump, while trying to tighten the big brass nut at the front I noticed after a turn it got looser, damn thing was threaded..
I remember reading about a recondition water pump on this, Ray’s the red chev’s web site “My 1928 Chev” I was able to get the guys number (thanks Ray). I rang him on a Wednesday we agreed to send each other a pump, my old and he had one ready already reconditioned to send me.. and on Friday he was true to his word as I had a pump at my front door, reconditioned , with new bearings at the top and new bearings at the bottom for only $215.  I gave it a quick engine enamel paint and had it on Friday pm.


Next step is insurance, paperwork, and then the RTA
Ok all registered, and I am very happy with the plates I got too..(has 28 in the middle)
The week before going to the mountains I heard there may be rain coming, eager to go on this run I pulled out the sewing machine again and sewed up a touneau cover thingy for the back out of some waterproof leather I had. luckily we only got about 5 minutes of heavy rain, but it did its job anyway
Below a picture when from when I took it up the mountains. Runs good smooth quite and doesn’t overheat.. couldn’t be happier with it
Well that’s my build from find to now.. hope you enjoyed it and see our You Tube video below. 
The story of “Gatsby” from Danny & Sharon.

Comment from Ray

"You have done a great job Danny, and should be very proud. Another Aussie 28 Chev on the road"



















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