'64 Nova
Being a young hot rodder at just 26, Joe Seeno doesn't have the usual stories of buying a first car for less than what a carburetor costs today, or that he regrets selling this or that. At 10 years old, Joe got the idea in his head that he needed to have a '66 Nova. As soon as he could, he scouted the Northern California Goodguys show in Pleasanton for one he could call his own. Daunted by the staggering price tags on decent cars, and the terrible condition of the ones in his price range, he broadened his year search to any pre-'68 Chevy II. He spotted this '64 with no motor or transmission, but a straight body and a price he could afford. The seller kindly trailered the car to Joe's house and the transformation began.

He started with a 283 and T10 four-speed to get it going under its own power. The next project was to strip the body of all decorations and fill in the leftover holes for the smooth look he sought. During this process Joe came across a 350 that took the place of the 283. The first paintjob was a two-tone blue and silver adorned by flames to break up the contrast. After five years, the four-speed was traded for a more freeway-friendly five-speed, and the two-tone was stripped and repainted in the single-tone blue you see here. Since then, the 350 made way for a more sophisticated 400. Lucky for Seeno he's a do-it-yourself kind of guy, so all of these changes didn't cost him bank.

Joe Seeno, 26 • Salinas, CA
Type: 355ci small-block Chevy
Block: four-bolt main
Oiling: Melling oil pump with front sump oil pan
Rotating assembly: cast crank, Eagle I-beam rods, flat-top Keith Black pistons
Cylinder heads: ported iron
Camshaft: Edelbrock Performer hydraulic, .488-/.510-inch lift
Valvetrain: Edelbrock sure-seat valvesprings with Crane Energizer roller rockers
and 2.02/1.60-inch valves
Induction: Edelbrock Performer Air-Gap intake and 600-cfm carb
Ignition: GM HEI distributor, MSD wires
Cooling: three-row aluminum radiator with an electric fan
Fuel system: electric fuel pump
Exhaust: Summit full-length headers, 2.5-inch exhaust, Flowmaster 40-series mufflers
Fasteners: ARP stainless
Transmission/shifter: '92 Camaro T-5 manual
Rear axle: GM 8.2-inch 10-bolt, 3.08 gears
Front suspension: CPP subframe kit with tubular upper and lower control arms, ¾-inch sway bar
Rear suspension: chrome multileaf springs, Competition Engineering slide-a-link traction bars
Brakes: Summit drilled and slotted rotors front, drums rear
Body: shaved moldings
Paint: custom pearl blue metallic, all bodywork and paint done by the owner
Wheels: 18x7 and 18x8 Coy's C-5
Tires: Nexen N3000