Alan Danehy has always had a deep affection and admiration for the classic cars of the 1960s. In 1992 he found himself negotiating for a wrecked 1964 Chevrolet Impala convertible with no engine. He paid a junkyard dealer in Francisco, near Evansville, Ind., $1,500 and hauled the car back to Indianapolis.
The restoration was a labor of love, but family, work and other commitments cut into his time to devote to the project.
A good friend donated a 327 stock engine that he sent out for a complete rebuild. The Powerglide two-speed transmission was still intact but also required rebuilding. The dashboard was destroyed, and GM did not offer restoration kits back then as they do today. He found various shops willing to work with him in restoring it.
Alan and four good friends spent many nights and weekends doing all the metal work on the body, restoring the quarter panels, rusted- out floor pans and trunk. A refurbishing kit for the interior, with all new materials, was ordered from after-market suppliers and fitted to the seats, including retro carpet. A new convertible top and wheels with rare Firestone Hawk tires brought the Impala back to life in 2013. To finish the car, a bright red paint scheme was chosen.
It took Alan 21 years of frustration and dedication to realize his dream. His smile was infectious as he told the tale of his Impala’s rebirth. He is always proud and happy to share his adventurous story at cruise-ins and car shows.
Until next time, happy cruising!