Out of the barn – Joe’s 1955 Chevy Gasser
Once a daily driver in the early 60s, this 1955 Chevy Gasser sat still in a barn in Murfreesboro, TN for 45 years until it caught the eye of a fellow car enthusiast from Middle Tennessee. However, getting his hands on it was a little harder than he anticipated. Originally purchased from a small-town dealership in Woodbury, TN, this ol’ shoebox originally traveled the streets of Nashville and Murfreesboro by a school teacher, Ms. Mears. She taught at Vanderbilt University and Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU).
For years it was her faithful ride until she passed away. The 1955 Chevy Gasser got parked in the family’s barn in 1967 where it settled in for a long, long slumber. Ms. Mears’ son was to inherit the Chevy but it appeared there was no interest in taking it back on the road. It wasn’t until 2012 when Joe Jones spotted the car in the barn that this timepiece was brought back to life.
Joe made several attempts to contact the family inquiring about the car, leaving several notes, but all he received was silence. Then he got a break. Turns out, a friend of Joe’s had a son that went to school with Ms. Mears’ son, the one who inherited the car. Her son ended up selling the car to Joe’s friends and as soon as he found out Joe bought it from them, not even two weeks later.
Persistence paid off for Joe and he began to do a little transformation on it. Having always favored gassers, he thought this would be the perfect opportunity to build a 1955 Chevy Gasser of his own and let’s just say, it wasn’t a bad decision.
Leaving the original paint and many of its original stickers, it began to take shape. A Vanderbilt school sticker was left on the left rear window, and a faded MTSU sticker was weathered but still affixed to the back glass. Being a gasser, it need to shake the ground. Joe yanked the stove bolt and put in a 383 4-speed with Hilborn stack injection, white open headers and a classic Moon Tank to finish the aesthetic. Bingo!
To achieve that classic gasser stance, Joe installed a straight axle with shackles and leaf springs pointing the nose hi in the air. As you can see the reinforced ladder bars get it squatting just right.
The vintage 60s vibe continues right through the cabin with a green flaked Superior steering wheel, and a mix of dash-mounted gauges including the Dixco tach and some vintage SW units. Spot on!
Since the transformation, this gasser has driven many miles and attended several shows in the southeastern region. It won “Period Perfect” award at Goodguys Nashville, and “Best Gasser” at Beatersville.
It’s been quite the eye-catcher with its solid build and vintage dragstrip vibe. As it rumbles through town or down the strip, it will definitely grab your attention – much more fitting than hiding in a barn. This car was meant to be seen and heard!