Originally Posted by Vintage Classic
I’m curious, what year impalas have you owned? Not trying to hijack the thread.
When my family moved to Florida from northern Ontario Canada we drove down in a brand new two door sedan three in the tree 235 six powered 1958 Bel Air. The dealership tried to sell my dad a used 1957 two door Bel Air hard top that had been in the possession of the sales manager; but who would want a 283 horse fuel injected '57 with a four speed on the floor equipped with electric windows no less. Came time to trade in the '58, it was about worthless compared to '57.
Dad bought an Evening Orchid 1965 Impala two door sport coupe with a 283 four barrel but this time with a PowerGlide and factory A/C as mom was the designated driver. In his travels dad came across an orphaned car at a dealership in Clearwater that was trying to sell it desperately. Nobody wanted it because it had a 350 horse 327 and it was a 9C1 optioned car. It had been ordered for the chief of police but when the city council got the bill they refused delivery and fired the chief. It was a 1968 Ermine White Caprice four door hard top car. Fifteen inch rally wheels hiding four piston disc brakes up front. It had a TH400 transmission which was an improvement over the PG. My mom liked it because it had four doors so she could take the women in the garden club out to lunch.
My first Impala was a 1985 305 four barrel four door sedan with the Taxi Cab package (9C6). It had a 200R4 transmission and the big 8.5 inch differential instead of the 7.6 inch normally used with a 305. It also had HD cooling (oil transmission and power steering pump coolers along with a four core radiator). Non descript car that after it's first 130,000 miles I pulled out the power train and replaced it with a ZZ502 crate engine and a 4L80 transmission. Also swapped out the 2.73 rear gear for a 4.56:1 ring and pinion with an Eaton Positraction differential using 30 spline axles. Drove that for five years but wanted more (only running low elevens). I put the 502 in my Suburban and built a 582 using a Dart big M sportsman block. That got me in the low nines as it had well over a thousand horsepower with a 250 shot of Nitrous Oxide.
When my wife retired from the Sheriff's Office they put her low mileage never wreck 1989 Caprice with HO 305 engine up for sale and I bought it at auction. Pulled the 305 and replaced it with a 406 that I had built out of a pile of aftermarket parts (the only GM part was the block). That became my daily driver as I was tired of the 582 (it was like constantly driving on ice so you had to constantly drive without ever relaxing for a moment). After seven happy years and probably 70,000 miles the stock block broke in half as I was running over 500 horsepower.
Though not Impalas I owned at different times 27 '55 Chevy two doors (most had either 427 or a 331 SBC under the hood) and all were four speed Muncie equipped. Had four 1967 or '68 Camaros with one '70 Camaro all with 427's or a 454 for power (never owned a '69). Add to that add another 19 Novas either a 1969, '70, or a '71. These were all either base 307 SBC or six cylinder cars that I bought to install a BBC in place of the stock motor. All of my Camaros and Novas ran in the tens, but I built a few to be cornering monsters for autocross.
I also owned a 1961 Corvair convertible Monza with the 110 horse motor that I upgraded to the 140 horse variant to autocross. Finally I had a 1963 one ton Chevy Apache truck that I used to tow my race cars. It had a 235 six under the hood with a three speed that broke so often I never used reverse as it wouldn't move the truck without stripping the gear box.
Got tired of replacing the three speed box so I pulled a five speed out of a two and a half ton dump truck (it had a PTO for the hydraulic pump) and yanked the whimpy six for a 400 cube SBC that I had rebuilt as a 406. I used a the 14 inch clutch out of the dump truck to get the power to the dual rear wheels though I never raced it.