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    JAILBIRD #1981 #Holden-Commodore-VC / #Holden-Commodore / #Holden

    It’s true. This kind of perfection shouldn’t be legal.

    You might say some cars are asking for it. Well, this VC has been on the local constabulary’s radar for almost a decade now. Queensland’s fi nest haven’t exactly taken a liking to it in the past, but with the car’s latest build that has all changed. It’s not only more powerful overall, but now moderately legal, too.

    Truck driver Lee Jenkinson (36) grabbed the VC in 1998 and wrapped up the most recent build late last year. You’ll notice that a lot remains the same, but in the engine bay and under the car are a range of new toys that would bring a smile to any fan’s face. The turbo LS package is good for 580whp (E85) and nines in street trim, and that, my friends, is very, very quick.

    Says Lee, “After my photoshoot eight years ago my car has undergone a big transformation. I went for a drive in my mate’s VK (OVK253), a 1000hp street-driven VK, and I had to have this set-up with an LS turbo.

    “First the car went to Silky Fab to be full tubbed, with a shortened and braced 9in, 31-spline axles and Strange centre with the 19x13in Simmons. A new moly tailshaft was built to handle 1500hp. I was sick of the rebuilding the old Trimatic, so an unbreakable Turbo 400 was built by Geartorque to handle 2000hp. Hopefully there are no more box dramas.

    “The engine is a stock Holden LS2 with rod bolts studs head gaskets and a small custom grind Comp Cam. It’s run 9.9@120mph at Willowbank rolling 100m due to the wrong diff gear choice. New diff gears should see early nines, maybe with more boost. The car has been tuned by Ben Hunt at Rotary Motorsport. Yes, a rotary tuner, but he’s one of the best tuners in the business. The car is now a pleasure to drive.”

    At the moment the car only revs to 6000rpm, which is nice and safe t s, head studs, big just the way Lee wants it. Built by Jason at CPE Engines, it’s a dream. The 4.5in exhaust now splits to dual 3in with shotguns out the rear. You’d think it would blow eardrums out, but it’s very quiet and manageable. “I can actually take my wife out on cruises now,” laughs Lee. The paint and interior remain the same.

    One thing that always grabs attention are those wheels. Everyone loves a true beaut set of Simmons, and these ones are top of the pile. The rears are 19x13in Simmons FR19 that leave little room in the full tubs. Rubber to squeeze onto them doesn’t come cheap, as you would imagine, but that doesn’t mean Lee is about to go light o g g n the throttle either.
    In all, it’s come together a treat. “I’m so happy with how my car is under the bonnet now. It’s quiet and best of all I get no attention from the QPS. That said, one QPS did say “beautiful car, but the rear wheels may be too wide.” Hmm, you don’t say…

    Thanks: “Ben Hunt at Rotary Motorsport (3205 1133), Silky at Silky Fab (0490 238 209), Jason at CP Engines (0434 079 884), Fez for the trick paint, Kent and Dallas for helping along the way, boys from HiTorque, and a big thanks to my wife Sam for letting me spend all our cash on my pride and job again.”


    TECH DATA NITTY-GRITTY

    ENGINE: #6L-LS2 eight-cylinder.

    PERFORMANCE: 580whp (E85), 9.9 @ 120mph.

    ENGINE HARDWARE: Four-bolt mains, #ARP mains stud kit, Comp Cam custom turbo grind camshaft, #Haltech PS2000 engine management system, CNC Billet Inc manifold, eight 2000cc injectors, #Garrett-GTX47 at 9psi, single 4.5in exhaust system split at the diff into twin 3in, Monster head gaskets, #Plazmaman intercooler, #PWR radiator, custom intake and piping.

    DRIVETRAIN: Turbo 400 three-speed, The Convertor Shop 3200rpm stall convertor, manualised valvebody, full race box, full Strange moly one-piece driveshaft, braced 9in, 31-spline Strange centre (3.25), full spool.

    SUSPENSION: Pedders coil-overs and swaybar front, QA1 coil-overs rear with Pedders swaybar, factory SL/E brakes.

    WHEELS/TYRES: 19x8in front and 19x13in rear #Simmons-FR19 wheels, 245/30 front and 325/25 rear Nitto Invo semi-slicks.

    BODYWORK: Glasurit custom mix in two-pack.

    INTERIOR: Haltech dash, Auto Meter tacho, oil, water and boost gauges, TRS harness, wooden steering wheel, custom console, ratchet shifter.

    You’d think it would blow eardrums out, but it’s very quiet and manageable. “I can actually take my wife out on cruises now ”

    “I went for a drive in my mate’s 1000hp street-driven VK, and I had to have this set-up with an LS turbo”

    Red-on-red is always great in a VC oldschooler like this, but there’s nothing oldschool now about what’s under the hood.

    The Glasurit custom mix remains and still sizzles eyeballs in the sun. How’s this for a fun box?
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    THE PROFESSIONAL / #Holden-Commodore / #Holden #Holden-VK #Holden-VK-Calais

    With 600rwhp and some of the best engineering in the biz, this ain’t amateur hour, folks. Words: Jason Round. Pics: Scott Paddy.

    To become a pro at something, you’ve got to put in the time. Spray-painter Nic Cheah (29) knows this better than anyone given the hours he himself has poured into his #1985 #Holden-Commodore-VK Calais. Purchased in 2012 and completed in 2015, it’s been a long haul. If you think a build this sails smoothly, think again…

    Says Nic, “The first time I got it tuned on a stock 5.7, we bent a rod. The first time I entered it into Motorvation, I fried the twin-plate clutch, decided to ditch the sixspeed and went with a Powerglide. After doing the auto conversion, the converter failed straight away. I was pretty much over it by the end, but my end goals were near, so I didn’t let it stop me. I moved forward. Persistence is the key.”

    As for the hardest part of the build in Nic’s opinion, it’s the age - old enemy we all face – time. “It would have to be the time it takes to build your dream car. Even when funds are there at your disposal, building cars takes time and patience. You have to be passionate about your project. I find that will help drive you to the end so you can enjoy it now rather than later.”

    If he could do it all again, Nic says he’d probably start with a one-owner car with an unmolested shell and go from there. That’s not to say he hasn’t enjoyed the ride of this build. In fact, there have been many upsides. “The friends/contacts I’ve made through the build and who have helped with the project is definitely what sticks out for me. Without the help, the car would not be what it is today.

    “The build took roughly four years and I never took a break from it. It was really go-go-go just so I avoided changing my mind and redoing things again and again - keeping up with the Joneses, so to speak. I stayed true to myself in my goals and how I pictured the finished product, and built it for myself. It is very easy to lose direction and let things go stale, but I kept my goals in arms reach. My most memorable moments would have to be fi ring it up for the first time, taking it for a spin and, of course, doing my first skid in it. You could not wipe the smile off my face. It was priceless.”

    Right now 14psi is pretty low in the boost game, so plans for the near future are to change some of the top end, get in a bigger turbo, bigger fuel system and crank it to 20psi-plus. Having already taken out Best Undercarriage and Runner NITTY-GRITTY Up Best Sedan at Motorvation 28 2014, not to mention hitting the Top 10, more appearances are planned. From the interior to the respray to the tubs, the work throughout the car is really A grade. This is a VK of the highest order and one that’s loved by Commodore fans whenever it goes. Nic’s pretty proud of the effort he’s put in. The only thing left to do now is to sit back in that Devonish seat and do away with tyres.

    Thanks: “Grgich Performance, Leighton Panel and Paint, the boys - In no particular order Mills, Benno, Mitch, Mooz, Lance. Proshine, Trim Car, WA Performance, Promptow, Clear View Windscreens, Final Drive, SCM Race Engines, Paul at City Discount Tyres Myaree.”

    TECHNICAL DATA NITTY-GRITTY

    ENGINE: #6L-EFI (LQ9 iron block, LS1 heads) eight-cylinder


    PERFORMANCE: 500-600rwhp, 1200ft.lb, 10.3@129mph

    ENGINE HARWARE: Block machined, bored, decked, chemically cleaned, blueprinted, balanced and crack-tested, TCI pressure plate, standard crankshaft 24-tooth reluctor, #Manley rods, #SRP pistons, steel rings, mains stud kit, Clevite mains and rod bearings, 241 standard #LS1 heads, Lunati dual-valvespring kit, #Noonan-Racing valve covers, Comp Cams camshaft, Morel lifters, Trend 7.400 pushrods, #ARP stud kit, doublerow timing chain, Mellings oil pump, Meziere electric water pump, #PWR cooling fan and radiator, standard LS6 inlet manifold, 87mm throttlebody, #Garrett-GT42 turbocharger at 14psi, LS3 coils, LS1 computer, twin #Bosch-044 fuel pumps, Turbosmart fuel-pressure regulator, Aeromotive filter/s, stainless -8 fuel lines (E85), stainless #Grgich-Performance T4 turbo manifolds and custom 4in into 3.5in single exhaust system with #Magana flow hotdog.

    DRIVETRAIN: Sportsman BTE Powerglide, 1.80 straight cut gears, Allfast billet stall convertor (3800rpm), sheet-metal 9in diff (3.25).

    SUSPENSION/BRAKES: Front coil-overs by #Velocity-Auto, rear #QA1 single adjustable coilovers, Macdonalds Bro four-link upper and lower tube arms, tubs by Grgich Performance, 296mm slotted and drilled rotors front and 286mm slotted and drilled rotors rear, VT calipers front and back, #QFM brake pads.

    BODYWORK: Standard #GM bodykit, burgundy over silver Standox 2K respray.

    INTERIOR: Custom leather and velour re-trim, Group A HDT remake steering wheel, VS Devonish seats front with Scheel headrests, VK Calais rear seat with Scheel headrests, beige velour headlining, Auto Meter gauges, custom dash, Pioneer head unit.

    “You have to be passionate about your project”

    “Persistence is the key”
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    THE CORRUPTOR #1999 #Holden-Commodore-VS / #Holden-VS / #Holden-VS-ute / #Holden / #Holden-Commodore
    Lock up your daughters, KRUPTN’s in town / #Holden

    Plasterer 27-year-old Clint Stevens is a man who has always had a mission. As you can see, it’s an epic one, the kind of stop-start build that reads like a Grisham novel. Says Clint, “I love the shape of the VS ute and I was also inspired by #KRUPTA .” He built the 1999 VS ute to be a tough street car. In his ownership for 15 years, it’s been a long ride, but what matters is the end product. Spoiler: It’s absolutely wicked.

    “I bought the ute as a stock V6 manual in 2005. It had a set of wheels, a nudge bar and a few dents and scratches here and there. I was on my red P-plates back then and my old man wouldn’t let me have a V8, so I settled for this with the dream of one day getting an eight between the rails. I loved the ute KRUPTA and wanted to have something just as tough.”

    After having the ute for a few months, Clint was looking at getting it painted, so he went to his mate Patto’s work and had a chat with his bosses Mick and Matt at #W&G (now #RYLESS Smash Repairs). It was soon booked in with a few new bits and bobs. Clint liked the standard colour, so it was just a matter of getting everything fixed and prep. One day Mick put forward the idea of putting a pearl over the top, with Clint over the moon about how it ended up coming out. The re-trim came next, but nothing “over the top”, as this remained Clint’s daily.

    “My good mate Patto informed me his uncle had a fresh 5L sitting in the shed, so with no hesitation I went around and bought it and put it aside for a rainy day. The V6 copped a bit of a hard time and the clutch finally let go. This was the rainy day I’d been waiting for, so I went on the hunt for a gearbox. I sourced a T700 and in went the 5L.”

    The boys at Goulburn Battery Factory wired a few things up and soon it was cruising better than ever. It was off to Canberra for a Stage II shift kit and minispool. “Broke apprentice wages don’t go far when building a car, so I was keen just to enjoy it.”

    Fast-forward a few years and the hunt for a blower was on. This led to a trip to Sydney for tuning the Haltech, but when Clint learned he couldn’t run his current box with it, he sourced a new gearbox set-up. “A few other potholes and the car was running, but I was not happy with the money that was spent and the workmanship on the car. I put up with it for 12 months before my mate Brad from Brad’s Auto Repairs talked me into a cam change, which turned into getting stroked to 355 while there was no engine in.”

    Clint thought he may as well do the bay while he was at it, so Patto was on the job again with a few late nights in the shed. Life commitments got in the way, but after a year everything was back together again, including many changes inside and a new exhaust courtesy of Chev at Liverpool Exhaust.

    “After talking to a few people I decided to go a 1L surge tank that feeds into twin 044 pumps. My mate Cooky helped make up a tray to mount everything on, while my mate Glen helped out with a few other bits and pieces. After the abortion of a wiring job from the last workshop, I took the ute to Gentech in Canberra for them to sort it out. It made 485hp on its run-in tune.

    “In Goulburn, the cops don’t like anything other than stock, so with it not being engineered there was a lot of night and country road driving. Just when I thought everything was going well, the convertor blew to bits the night before I was taking it to a show.” Unfortunately, metal had gone through the box, which is when the two-speed Powerglide went in. “What a change that made. It was a whole new car to drive.”

    But everything did need to squeeze under the bonnet if it was going to be engineered, so Clint’s made Glen’s dad Gary Bell took a standard VS bonnet and made a reverse cowl for it. Finally, engineered, it’s now out and about doing exactly what those plates preach, and that’s just the way we like it.

    Thanks: “Kylees (W&G Smash Repairs, 0248214521), Brad’s Auto Repairs (0413645072), Steve at United Motor Trimmers (0248211987), Rob at Comp Coat, Cam at Walled Up White Walls (0403285004), Gentech, Joe at Central Coast Performance Transmissions, mates who have helped, Kain for the cheap parts, Brad for work for the engine bay and other bits, Jason Cook for the fuel system and other bits, Payne Trevanron and Matt Cole for bodywork other than W&G, Glen and Garry Bell for everything they have done to get the car to where it is now, my dad, mum and girlfriend Daniell for being understanding with the build, Chris Degan for the cooler the engine work, Jamie Patton pipework.

    TECH DATA NITTY-GRITTY #Holden-Commodore-VS-ute

    ENGINE: #Holden-304 stroked to #Holden-355 eight-cylinder

    PERFORMANCE: 485hp (run in, E85)

    ENGINE HARDWARE: 304 block, #Scat crank and I-beam conrods, #SRP pistons and #Hastings rings, #Camtech camshaft, Crane pushrods and lifters, port and polished cylinder heads, #Gold-Crane 1.65 rockers and stainless valves, Crane valvesprings, #ASR sump, JP high-volume oil pump, 44lb 440cc #Bosch injectors, two #Bosch-044 fuel pumps, PWR intercooler and radiator, #CAPA side-mount supercharger, twin Ford AU themos, Haltech engine management system, Turbosmart boost controller, Hurricane exhaust system, Torquepower intake manifold.

    DRIVETRAIN: Two-speed Powerglide, billet servos, fully manualised, TCE 3500-3800rpm stall convertor, PWR cooler with fan, spool.

    SUSPENSION/BRAKES: King Springs Suplerlows, Pedders shocks, Pedders swaybar rear, VT twin-piston calipers front with slotted rotors, slotted rotors rear.

    WHEELS/TYRES: 20in VE GTS Clubsport wheels, various tyres.

    BODYWORK: Tungsten with blue pearl respray (PPG), VS SS front bar, hard cover infill panel on rear, reverse cowl bonnet 75mm.

    INTERIOR: Bock Scheel seats front and rear, full re-trim in tan leather with custom flames on rooflining, #SplitFire gauges, #B&M Pro Ratchet shifter, #SplitFire gauges, Speco steering wheel, flames on door pods, #HSV symbol behind seats, Alpine head unit, front speakers.

    “In Goulburn, the cops don’t like anything other than stock”

    “I love the shape of the VS ute and I was also inspired by KRUPTA”

    It’s all engineered now, too, thanks to the reverse cowl above.

    Clint’s main advice to himself next time around would be not to do things twice. Coming soon here will be billets and a set of tubs.

    There’s a lot of detail you might miss at first, including the flamed roof-lining.

    “Just when I thought Everything was going well, the convertor blew to bits”
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