1954 Nash Healey LeMans Coupe page 8
Interior sand blasted to confirm the state of the inner body
Still some welding and minor repairs to be made, which will happen once the shell is ready to go into the rollover jig
Sandblasting around the headlight openings and ready to go off for primer.
The outer body has now been primed by "The Healey Factory" in
Melbourne. They will also complete the outer body painting when the
Now there is primer on the shell it is much easier to appreciate the
high standard of workmanship by Jerry in metal finishing the body
I decided to fit a Nash accessory clock rather than the ash tray
usually installed. I found this old clock on Ebay, not working. I wet
sanded the perspex lens and re polished. As can be seen below, after
modification the adjustment knob and regulator screw are now dummies.
Now modified and working fine.
Trial fitting of the engine and trans. The engine fitted in 1960 didn't
come with the car and was probably a 283. I'm using a 327 as they are
pretty easy to come by, and should supply plenty of power in standard
Trial fitting of the steering box for the right hand drive conversion.
The Nash steering box housing is reversible and is the same type as an
XK120 and MKV11 Jaguar. The chassis was manufactured by Healey with the
right hand drive mounting points. New right hand drive worm and nut
assemblies are available for the jaguar thankfully. The old Chev engine
mounts have been removed also and the chassis rail cleaned off ready
for new mounts.
The steering column now in place in the right hand drive position, with
mounting modified to suit. It will be welded in place when all
dimensions are confirmed. As I intend using the car as a daily driver,
I have decided to go with a GM Turbo 700 4 speed auto rather than the
Nash gearbox and overdrive, which also didn't come with the car. The
engine and trans are now aligned and suspended in position ready for
mounting. It required removal of the original rear engine cross member,
which will be modified and re installed at the front of the engine, and
a new removable cross member installed for the rear gearbox mount.
Weight distribution has also been checked with some 20 litre drums
filled with water placed in the boot, in the radiator position and
interior to simulate the finished weight. Using a hydraulic ram to lift
each wheel around the car it took 40000KPA to lift the rear wheels and
45000 to lift the front, so given the the Chev engine is lighter
than the Nash 6 and further back in the car I'm happy with weight
Notes on the restoration.
It took me a while to decide what to do with this car and bring about a
reasonable result. Early on I looked into returning it to original, but
found that finding all of the parts that were missing would be very
difficult, and it didn't sit well with me undoing all of the work done
by Roy Stetina. After being in contact with the Stetina family and
learning the history of the car it seemed the best thing to do as much
as practical was to retain the cars provenance as the 1960 Stetina
Corvette Healey. To meet current registration standards the car and
modifications will be inspected by a consultant engineer to verify
safety and compliance with rules for cars of this type. Braking system
will be upgraded along with other modifications to meet those
standards. Hopefully the end result will be a comfortable, safe and
easy to drive car in all types of modern road conditions.