Click the photos for an expanded view of each.
The finished spare tire storage well.
The final finish is applied to the trunk floor.
An original type spare tire was purchased from Coker tire in Chattanooga TN.
February 28th 2005. A new fuel tank, sending unit, and reproduction factory exhaust from Late Great Chevys in Orlando Florida.
March 3rd 2005. A reproduction trunk mat, and cardboard trim panel from Late Great Chevys complete the trunk interior restoration.
March 6th 2005. The front sheet metal was removed to finish the engine mechanical systems, and test run the engine.
Great care was taken to reassemble the front sheet metal without scratching the new paint. A genuine Chevrolet assembly manual was used to insure proper assembly, and alignment to factory specifications. Original type sealants were used in the joints of the body components to isolate them from vibration, and prevent damaging the paint.
March 8th 2005. This was a factory undercoated car, and the rubberized spray undercoat from Wurth was used throughout the restoration.
March 9th 2005. The engine compartment is finished.
The original build code grease pencil markings on the cowl were still visible. These markings were reproduced in their exact location to replicate the look of the under hood area as the car appeared when new.
March 12th 2005. A popular heat shield, sound insulation was placed into the floor and interior door panels to deaden the road noise. 3M spray adhesive was used to attach the material to the floor.
March 13th 2005. The restoration took one year of Jim's spare time. Jim estimates that 1000 hours were invested in this restoration. With the exception of the engine rebuild, and the final paint work, Jim, did most of the work on this auto. This photo is from the first test drive.
She runs great on regular grade pump gasoline. Delivering an average of 11 to 13 mpg. The car will cruise comfortably at 65mph.
The interior is original with the exception of the carpet and back seat upholstery. The carpet and seat upholstery were purchased from Impala Bob's in Arizona.

Jim's Impala was born on March the 11th 1959 at the St.Louis assembly plant. The original owner stopped driving the car in 1965, and parked it in the garage. Just like Rip Van Winkle, after the 36 year sleep and two year restoration, she has awakened to a world much different.

Photo from the Flora Indiana "Hog Jog" car show. June 18th 2005

The fins of the 1959 GM model year represent the most outrageous styling ever! The influence of the "space race" and the fascination with rocketry are obvious. The tail lights simulate rocket exhaust. In the rear center of the roof, an exhaust duct is simulated, and has no purpose except decoration.

The moldings that run the length of the side of the car simulate a rocket. When they break into two separate moldings in the center of the rear door, these are the jet stream "vapor trails" that follow the rocket... Diamond Back Classic radial wide white wall tires complete the 1950s look.

photo from June 24 2005

The instrument cluster is aircraft like. Scott's Speedometer service in Michigan restored the speedometer. The clock was cleaned and lubricated. All instruments are in working order.
Rockets are featured on the top edges of the front fenders. They are followed by moldings that simulate a jet stream vapor trail. Somewhat functional aircraft like intake ducts are seen in the front edge of the hood. The front bumper and grill protector with two rubber cones was a popular dealer installed option on 1950s automobiles. The "Fine 59" Indiana license plate was mounted on Jim's 1959 ElCamino in the 1980s. Photo taken in June 2005.

Thank you: Marty Snell, Tim Snell, Mike Pavuk, John Boyce, Alex Miller, Late Great Chevys, Main Street Body Shop, Fowler NAPA, Mike's Machine Shop, Auto Body Supply, Etter Tire, Bennett's Garage, Lafayette Auto Trim, Dubber's Alignment, and EBAY!

photo from June 27 2005

Ressurrected from a 35 year sleep, she now roams the backroads of Indiana making appearances at auto shows, and collecting trophies in the "original restored" class.

photo from September 16th 2006

Colfax Indiana show, September 2006

Second place in Stock Restored 1958~1972 class.

Danville Illinois September 15 2007

June 15 2008, the fourth summer she roams the Indiana Prairie.

July 26 2008

The Impala has been winning trophies like crazy this summer of 2008.

She draws a crowd everywhere she goes.

August 7 2010, the sixth summer she roams the Indiana Prairie.

Additional image click here

1959 Impala Sedan Blue Indiana
Historic Fowler Indiana Theatre

March 2015, Historic Fowler Theatre, Fowler Indiana

(built in 1940)

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