The Build – Part 2

It’s been too long since my last post, car has been to a bunch of shows…but that will be another post.  So, back to the build story.  HPT had just finished up at ADM Performance.

The story continues……

I drove out of Texas with a HUGE grin from ear to ear and had just an incredible drive home. She was a sleeper…. Even without Supercharger badging and just the stock 1LE hood, she still had all that HP – so much get up and go. I knew I had made the right decision with Andy and ADM. I was home in time for Christmas, with my present sitting in the garage.

But what was next? How could I make her mine, like no one else’s. I was combing over the forums, looking for parts and pieces. A ZL1 rocker panel was the first body mod, then LED side markers. That’s when I saw the next step…on the Camaro5 Forum. USW Forged made a post offering a discounted price for a set of their wheels for a car coming to the Camaro5 Fest if they would agree to be a booth car. I was already planning on taking my car to the Fest so I could run her down the track with the Cowboy. So swapping stock wheels to something custom was a perfect next step. I opened up a conversation with USW, and they made the process quite easy. USW wanted to showcase the Elimin8R wheel, and would make up a custom color to specifically match the color of my car.

USW Wheel Design Drawing

USW Wheel Design Drawing


It was a go – new wheels and on display in a booth at Camaro5 Fest. And that lead to the rest of the build process. Matt, from USW, introduced me to Tommy Z at the Fest. Tommy and I started talking about my car and how it was a great starting place to build something special. Of course, as with all plans and designs, it grew, as did my friendship with Tommy. 😉


First time HPT was on display, USW Booth. (Camaro5 Fest 2014)

First time HPT was on display, USW Booth. (Camaro5 Fest 2014) 

USW and Oracle Lights also opened the door for my car to be a feature vehicle at SEMA. I had always wanted to go to SEMA. For any of us that watch car shows on TV, it’s all about the SEMA builds. It was THE place to see cool cars and the next gen products.

But before SEMA came the Nashville Goodguys Car Show, where Tommy and I started working on a few sketches for the SEMA build. We started with a basic plan of smoothing out the gills on the rear quarter panels, cutting in some vents on the front fenders, and relocating the fuel door. And, last but not least, figuring out a way to give the supercharger a little more room under the hood.

HPT at Nashville Goodguys 2014.

HPT at Nashville Goodguys 2014.

Nashville Goodguys 2014 was our chance to hang out and get to know each other.   The plan was set, and after the show, off my car went to Grand Rapids for mods. It was an emotional event watching the car being loaded on the trailer.   To be honest, I was a little worried. But I knew Tommy was the right guy for the work. I had seen picture of his cars he had worked on prior, and knew his reputation. Tommy Z was the guy to get this done.

Car Loaded up for the trip north. So the project began. His buddies over at Halo Supercar started work on the fuel door relocation. While at the Camaro5 Fest, I saw how the Oracle car had the fuel door up on the top of the rear quarter panel and loved how that looks. The original concept Camaro had the same thing, just on the left side.



fuel door 4

Fuel door modifications at Halo


After finishing up at Halo, it was off to the mad scientists workshop. Tommy started work on smoothing the gills, adding in front fender vents, and the mysterious “Mohawk”. He and I both wanted to do something special to the hood’s heat extractor. After installing the supercharger under the stock hood, it was a tight fit under the extractor. I wanted something that would give it a little more space, let in more airflow, and give it a one-off look. Hence the “Mohawk” – the centerpiece of the car’s new look. Along with the new look, came new wheels. Tommy had the idea of putting on a set of one-off custom USW wheels. Yes, another set of USW’s. Cause a guy can never have enough sets of wheels…. Of course he was none too happy when I told him I wanted the shiny set of custom wheels painted black. So we compromised by leaving the lip chromed. He was 100% right on that one, it did make the look.


Work in progress...

Work in progress…


The build was progressing, and SEMA was getting closer. It was coming up on time to do some finishing touches, sand, and go to paint. I wanted to get my hands dirty, and actually help out, so Tommy and I worked out a schedule for me to go up north and help out. That’s when things got crazy…crazy good.

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