Last time we left you, our project Brass Tacks Blazer saw the finishing up of the outside sheet metal work at Status. Now it is time to tackle the intricate metal work on the inside of the roadster. The first step is the foundation, bracing the body to eliminate flex due to the cut roof. Then it is onto the rear tubs and notch cover before the entire floor is recreated.
Being that it is a Blazer roadster, everything is considered interior and not a cab with a bed attached. Simply throwing some bucket seats in with a notch cover and flat floor wouldn’t cut it; not with all of the other custom metal work going on. There would be a few requirements dictating the design. First, a rear set would be needed and built to fit inbetween the tubs, this meant that the floor would nee to remain as low as possible in the front section while raising up to expose and clear the mandrel bent frame and Currie rearend. The rear section would house all of the goodies and would be built up for a flat floor with compartments for the Kinetik batteries and Pioneer sound system.
The first was to tackle the wheel tubs. Sure a set of trailer tubs could have been used or made from sheet metal but taking one look at the C-10 tubs that came factory with a nice beveled body line we looked to keep that heritage intact. While the ‘67-72 and ‘73-87 tubs look very similar, the later model tubs are much longer and were way too big for our needs even for the 22×12-inch Colorado Custom Segundo wheels wrapped in Toyo Proxes STII 305/40 tires. With some reworking, the ‘67-72 tubs would be perfect. The notch cover is both form and function providing the bracing for the custom rear seat and mounting place for the custom acrylic cover. AM Hot Rod Glass custom formed the notch cover acrylic piece based off of the measurements providing a clear vision of the rear suspension.
Being that this Blazer is a 1976 model it features a half top that was removed as well as the top of the windshield frame for a roadster look; bracing is needed. Before anything was cut off, the body was fully braced to ensure no flexing.
When ready, bracing was added along the sides by the doors and along the floor before the temporary bracing was cut away. This ensures that there is no flexing and that the doors will always line up perfectly.
With the entire rear floor cut out for the mandrel bent rails and rearend; the first step was to place the 67-72 C-10 rear wheel tubs over the tires to check for clearance and see where it would need to meet up with the floor.
First a pattern for the front floor section is made and sheet metal is cut and bent based on the pattern.
Bead roll lines are added to strengthen the sheet metal.
A frame from box tubing is made for the floor. This area will see people climbing in and out and sitting on the rear seat so strength is needed.
With the floor done, a frame to hold the rear seat in place is made that flows over the notch cover.
The wheel tubs are raised greatly to fit the rear tires and will need to be extended to meet the floor. This is done using sheet metal and forming the curves by hand.
The body line on the tubs is modified to follow the contour of the radiused notch cover.
With the tubs welded up, the rear floor section is next.
Recesses are made to house a pair of Kinetik 1800HC batteries, a pair of Pioneer 10-inch shallow mount subwoofers and the amplifiers to power them. All will see flush mounted panels soon to come.
To show off the innovative chassis work and polished Currie rear end, a window will be made in the rear notch cover. Kris Birtciel and Dustin Deleon start by marking the radius of the curve over the notch cover frame.
The width is then measured and the specifications are sent over to AM Hot Rod Glass in Ontario, California where a custom piece of high clarity Â¾-inch acrylic is formed to match the contour.
Here is the formed piece of light bronze tinted acrylic from AM Hot Rod Glass ready to be trimmed and installed. The piece was formed for optimum clarity and no distortion.
The notch cover panel is then cut to showcase the AM Hot Rod Glass acrylic window and the suspension work below it.
The rest of the custom sheet metal work will include a ’32 roadster style dash created from scratch and restyled pillars to complete the roadster look. Stay tuned.