1967 Chevelle owned and built by Ken Mack
The first time I saw this car it was at a car show at the Tradex in Abbotsofrd and was not finished but had enough cool pieces to know this was some serious promod mojo happening here. Shops all over the Continent are turning out wicked Promod versions of all our favourite muscle cars with all sorts of bolt on hi performance pieces and subtle body modifications…but this is the first one I had heard of that was built by a finishing carpenter.
This was not the crazy over the top no expense spared shop build that make shops famous. This was a do-it yourself project done on weekends and evenings. I am not saying anyone could of done this but Mike Mack had been around lot’s of cars and with some patience and a lot of skills he was able to pull it off.
He had built lot’s of Chevy I’s back in the day and was no stranger to buying fixing and flipping, but the desire for some serious performance was top priority on this build. This car was bought in 2007 but started working on it in 2008 and then finished 2 years.
The reason a promod version was picked for this car was that sitting in his garage was a perfectly restored numbers matching 1969 RS Camaro driven twice a year and a 1970 Z28 with an LT-1 and M22 4 speed that also got driven only occasionally. Ken wanted a car that was enjoyable to drive for long distances with a good sound system and massive performance.
Recently he had built a 1968 Nova with some big power and decent brakes and also a similar 65 GTO for a friend, but knew he wanted more.
As luck would have it a long time friend knew of this 1967 Chevelle 396 4 spped sitting in a garage in Ladner and although it was not a driver it had great floors and was a great partially dismantled shell. The perfect car to start a full restoration on…but Ken immediately cut out the perfect floors to make room for a custom Chassis.
A “Roadster Shop” RS Chevelle frame that was the 37th such frame they had built was used. When placing the body on it Ken realized the floorboards, as perfect as they were, had to go. Ken wanted a low stance for this car. The car’s floors were completey fabricated and look like a piece of art…now all covered in coating and sound mats. The car was lowered over the chassis for a better look and better handling using a Detroit speed front suspension with tubular a arms and a 4 triangulated link rear suspension modified a bit.
The body got some very subtle modifications such as shave door handles and drip rails along with modified inner fenders and the complete interior was extensively modified. To come up with inner fender took lot’s of time to design and took about a week just to fabricate the sheet metal for the engine bay.
The engine was a new Chevy LS-3 from “Street and Performance” with a Magnuson supercharger and 411 gears and a Tremec 6 speed with the big overdrive to compensate for the 4:11 gears on the highway. To bring all this rolling goodness to a halt is Wilwood 6 piston 14” discs on the front and 13” 4 piston on rear.
So far all the parts are pretty straight forward but Ken’s master skills at woodworking really shined in the interior . After being sidetrack and not able to work on the car for a while his mind worked overtime to come up with the “Two Hump” dashboard using 2 specially hand hammered and shaped pieces of metal and are welded together and covered in leather. This happened in a marathon overnight session after weeks of thinking about it.
The front seats are Recaros found at the Coastal Swapmeet that have the headrests removed and raised backs. The backseats are copies of the Recaros made from wood and skinned in the same Leather. The patterns used in the Interior were designed by Ken and a friend and then stitched by a professionsal. The headliner was also done by the pro out of suede. Ken also designed and built the console out of wood and steel and had it covered in Leather. ”Vintage Air” was installed to further prove this car was going to be driven and driven lots!
Also using his skills as a carpenter he built a paint booth and they painted the car himself in the homemade paint booth. The underside is also completely painted and finished as nicely as the top.
The Roadster Shop’s frame’s crossmember had to be slightly modified to fit the bigger 6 speed so the transmission cross member was relocated by Ken to the same quality and look of the “roadster Shop”
The final piece before hitting the road is the killer “Assante” wheels that Ken found on the manufacturers website that were a new design and truly add to the look of the car. Of course the wheels are a massive ?” x ?” on the front and a bigger ?” x ?” on the rear.
After initial assembly and after the first drives, something just was not up to snuff and much tinkering and playing by Ken was needed to sort out the mysterious height problem in the front. Needed to lower it Ken re-fabricated mounting points on the frame to all the car to sit lower. Also new Neoprene bushing were swapped to get rid of a clunk inherent with these swivel end links.
After getting the car finished some test runs were used to further shakedown the car and after a drive to Vernon to a car show with his Brother Mike he and Mike started an a 1969 Camaro Promod for Mike. Of course after that Camaro a 1967 Nova and then a 1969 Camaro Convertible are going to get the same special “Carpenter” treatment.