Raymond McAvoy

Year 1974
Make Chevrolet
Model Nova
Body Style 2-door sedan
VIN 1X27D4W284914

Engine 350
Carburetor 4 bbl.
Ignition points
Exhaust single
1974 Chevrolet Nova
January 14, 1997: I have spent the last four or five years restoring it to a semi-original condition. The drivetrain, a 350 CI engine with a 4 bbl. carburetor mated to a 350 TH transmission, is all original with only 26,000 miles. I recently had the exterior repainted from an ugly tan to bright blue metallic. While the car is stored in my garage this winter, I am removing the interior to have the seats reupholstered.
1974 Chevrolet Nova engine compartment

1974 Chevrolet Nova rear

1974 Chevrolet Nova trunk

1974 Chevrolet Nova

1974 Chevrolet Nova

1974 Chevrolet Nova engine compartment
This is the engine compartment before the 350 was installed.

After I cleaned all of the oil and dirt off of my engine, I found that it still had a lot of orange paint on it, so I repainted it orange. It is date coded September or October of '73, so it may have been built before the color change took place. Maybe different assembly plants changed colors at different times? The only option that I have is power steering. I would like to add power brakes along with the discs if I could afford it. My car is painted "bright blue metallic," which is a '74 GM color, but not the original color for my car.

1974 Chevrolet NovaI left the rally wheels the color that they were when I bought them. I think that they were painted the same color as the car when they were on Camaros. I was not sure what color to paint them, so I left them. The chrome inserts were also Camaro parts that I left on the wheels because I like the looks of them. I would not even think of buying 36 new inserts to dress up wheels without them, as they are over $6 in parts catalogs. That would cost over $200, more than I paid for my complete set of wheels!

The chrome around the headlights was in such excellent shape that I did not have to do anything to get it shiny. I was really amazed at the condition of the chrome parts on the car compared to the rest of the body work. Both bumpers on the car have not been replated, but I did use a lot of rubbing compound to shine them up. Since the photos were taken, I have replaced the front bumper with the one from the '73 parts car. The original bumper had some dents in it (probably don't show in the photos). The only difference that I noticed between the '73 and '74 front bumpers is that the '73 has wider air intake slots (?) in it. Other than that, it bolted in place perfectly.

1974 Chevrolet Nova interiorThe jack that is behind the spare is one of those newer style scissor jacks. I have the original under the lip[.] The reason that I have the other jack is because one of the jack slots in the rear bumper was all bent up. You may notice that the rear bumper has some non-original black guards on it. I installed these to cover up the bent slot, but now I can't use the original jack, so I carry the other one.

I can relate to [a car] being in various states of disassembly. Mine was like that for about 3 years. Close to a year of this time was spent locating a body shop that had the time to take on my car and do a decent job without charging a fortune. Once I had found one, I had to wait several months for them to get time to start on my car.

While I was waiting, I cleaned up all of the trim, emblems, bumpers, and other parts that I had removed in preparation for the paint job. Once I got the car back from the body shop, it didn't take me very long to get it back together because I had everything cleaned and ready to put back on the car. One problem that I did have was finding room to store all of the parts until I was ready to reinstall them.

I can't wait for spring so that I can get my car out of the garage and start driving it. It may be a while though, as we still have about 3 feet of snow here.

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1997 Aren Cambre.