1 HISTORY OF CAR
The Corvette made its first appearance at the 1953 Motorama show in New York’s Waldorf Hotel.
The real brains behind Corvette was Harley Earl the Design Vice President of GM it was he who saw an opening for a two-seater sports car because of the vast amount of English one’s being imported (MG’S & Jaguar’s ).A new revolutionary material was used for the body, fiberglass and still is today.
GM soon became a where that people who had seen the car at the show wanted to purchase one as soon as possible. As demand to put the car into production was so great GM managed to get the first Corvette to roll of the production line at Flint Michigan on the 30th of June 1953 that’s only five months in the design stage compared to the usually 5-10 years.
Why go for fiberglass? because of the War and shortages of materials, fiberglass was quicker to put into production. The first power came from a straight six engine (stove-bolt) 235cc that came from a tractor with increased compression to a new high of 8-1.
In 1955 the V8 engine was offered as an option, which was up graded from a 231 to a 265 with 9.25 compression, 4 barrel Carter carb and a dual-point distributor making 210bhp at 5200rpm. In 1963 a revamped Vette appeared that was based from a car that was tested at Sebring in the late fifties it was to be called Corvette Sting-ray. With a small block 327 and power options from 259bhp, 300bhp and 340bph. In ‘63 the independent rear suspension replaced the solid axle making the weight go from bias 51/49 to 47/53 which meant for the first time most of the weight was over the rear end. In ‘64 hydraulic lifters were introduced. In ‘65 four wheel discs brakes became an option. More power was called for by customers and as Mickey Thompson had already put a 396cc in the Sting- Ray late in ‘62 that he was racing GM soon followed. The bottom end of the engine was from GM passenger cars while the top end was all new which was developed for stock car circuits that had an unusual valve arrangement that lead then to be known as the porcupine heads  with 11 to 1 compression, solid lifters and a single four barrel holley it produced 425hp while the blueprinted one delivered 442hp straight out of the crate
Every year Chevrolet would update the power of the V8 and in ‘67 they added the L-88 this came with Aluminum heads an 850 cfm Holley carb and 12.5 to 1 compression which made 560bph. At Bonneville that year a 427 Vette with Hillborne injection came first with a top speed of 192mph.
In 1968 a new shape appeared the C3 the Marko Shark getting its name from the design; it had vacuum pop-up head lights and wiper door for the recessed wipers. Fibre Optic’s were used to monitor all the lighting circuits.
By 1969 you could choose almost any option including the rear axle ratio of 4.56 to 1 just for drag racing although only about 20 were ordered.
From 1972 it was downhill a 350 was down to 225bph. 1974 saw the 454 down to only 270bhp while the 350 in ‘76 was only 165bhp. Corvette sales were still good with a record high in ‘69 with 38,000 sales that rose to 37,000 in ‘75 but then rose again to a new high in ‘76 with 46,000 models being sold. 1978 was the 25 anniversary which saw the biggest body change’s for years with the most powerful engine only producing 220bhp but was up from the previous years.
1984 saw the all new C4 Vette with 31mpg and 205bph things were looking up. This model remained until 1996 with power in the ZR1 Vettes now up to 375 in ‘92 to 405bph in ‘95 at 5800rpm.
In 1997 along came the all new C5 a much more refined car and more suited to the European market not only was the styling better, but so to was the access no more door sill’s to get over, with 340bph in ‘97 raising to 405bph in the 2003 50th anniversary model with the LS6 engine. A restyled C5 made an appearance in 2005 the C6 with the LS7 engine option this is now making 505bhp (Z06).


2 HISTORY OF YOUR CAR
I purchased this 1971 Corvette Stingray in 1982 on a lovely sunny Saturday April 17th at 11
.20 am.
This is one of only 7,121 convertible made in that year. The base convertible cost when new was $5,259 it came with Brands Hatch Green paint and interior but when I purchased it the colour had already been changed to black. The re-spray was poor and it was a year later before I had it re-sprayed black with multi-coloured graphics. This was to remain on the Vette for 23 years before it was to get a new re-spray, again black but this time with ghost flames. The goal is to keep this car roadworthy all the time while maintaining, changing, or upgrading it, which I have achieved most of the time, accept mainly for the re-sprays. Until 2006 this was raced with the original 350cid engine, but then this was removed for safe keeping. The rest of the running gear is all stock items i.e. this is 100 numbers matching numbers car but all components have been rebuilt or modified once or twice.

 

 


3(a) MODIFICATIONS MADE TO CAR


 Engine

World Products Motown Small Block

Forged Steel 4340 Crank

Eagle H-Bean Rods

Crower Mechanical Roller Cam

Dart Pro 1 Heads

JE Forged Pistons with Total Seal Rings

Electric Fan/Fuel Pump and Water Pump

NOS Occasionally 

(b) GEARBOX
Stock case rebuilt with Hughes components and BM shifter in the stock console

BM Convertor


 (c) BACK AXLE FRONT SUSPENSION
The back axle has the stock case but has been rebuilt using Eaton Posi differential with S/S clutch plates,20 spline inner shafts larger outer shafts  and a Drag Vette 6-Link kit with safety loops  The IRS sits on heavy duty trailing arms with adjustable shocks

Front suspension now has coil-over struts with adjustable shocks and original A-arms

Wilwood brakes on all four corners

 

(d) CHASSIS
Stock


(e) WHEELS AND TYRES
Special made to order 8x15 Budnik Switchblade, with Drag radials.

(f) INTERIOR
Stock


4 BEST TIMES AND SPEED
 10.4 at 129 many times at Santa Pod


5 FUTURE MODIFICATIONS
It’s so secret even I don’t know

 

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