READERS’ ROCKETS

TONACIA LONG 1969 HT HOLDEN PREMIER

SEND photos of your car and a few details of what went into the build to Readers’ Rockets, Street Machine, Locked Bag 12, Oakleigh, Vic 3166 or email readerscars@bauer-media.com.au. Please note: Send us copies of prints as we are unable to return your photos.

TONACIA LONG 1969 HT HOLDEN PREMIER

“MY GREAT grandfather had the first Holden dealership in Cloncurry, so Holdens have been in the family for a long time. Before the Premier I had a onetonner, but it wasn’t big enough for the family, so I sold it to buy the HT as a cruiser. I’m its third owner and I’ve had it for about eight years now. It was 100 per cent original when I bought it, but the 186 wasn’t going to cut it, so we put in a 383ci small-block Chev, Turbo 350 transmission and a nine-inch diff. It had to go fast but I wanted to focus on torque, which is what we built the motor for. It’s a great cruiser with plenty of grunt that’s awesome to drive; I can drive it to the track and run 10 or more passes, then drive it home. My PB is 12.23, and my partner has run 11.87 in it. This year we’ve upgraded the transmission to a manualised reverse-pattern ’box, and added a new fuel system, which has helped with the times at the track. My partner is a coachbuilder and we have another project on the go at the moment, so once that’s sorted we’ll strip the HT and give it some love!”

KEVIN SHARP EJ HOLDEN UTE

“CHECK out my EJ ute. It is running a mildly worked 186 red motor, backed by a Toyota Supra five-speed gearbox. Keeping the engine cool is a Davies Craig water pump, a PWR radiator and twin thermo fans. Up front is an HR Holden crossmember, with a big Hoppers Stoppers disc-brake upgrade and rack-andpinion steering. The rims are 17-inch Intros.”

JAY CARTER VF SANDMAN UTE

“MY VF Special Edition Sandman ute has had a bunch of upgrades thanks to Brett Stewart from Formula Tech/ Walkinshaw Performance. It now runs one of their W547 supercharger packages, as well as a Walkinshaw custom sticker kit and painted supercharger cover. It also has a Pro Billet short shifter and lowered suspension. There are still a few more mods to go with this. I will be changing out the stock heads for a set of CNC-machined Higgins ceramiccoated heads; replacing the standard brakes for Walkinshaw AP four-pot calipers and slotted/drilled rotors; and strengthening the driveline, gearbox, driveshaft, differential and more.”

CHRIS COYTE 1963 AP5 VALIANT

CHRIS is the proprietor of Coyte’s Customs and has plenty of big-cube toys, but he built his current AP5 Val retaining its 225ci six-cylinder. After spending a good amount of time beating 40-odd years of abuse out of the Valiant, Chris manned the spray gun himself. The only other person to lay a hand on the car was Tony from Revival Custom Signs, who did the ’striping and boot artwork. The slant-six runs a cam from Pentastar Resto Parts, a fat set of extractors, and a Cain intake manifold topped with a 465 Holley. Just like the paint, Chris tackled the engine build himself, and backed it up with a pushbutton 904 Torqueflite. Chris built the AP5 to cruise with his wife Kate and daughters Holly and Ashlee.

DION ELLIS HJ HOLDEN

“THE HJ? Yep, nothing special; it was my nan’s daily, and my missus bought it off her for my birthday a while back. I painted it and had a local guy do the seats and door trims again. Other than that it’s a stock-as-a-rock 202/Trimatic family cruiser. I’ll build a driveline for it one day, when I can decide on a reliable combo. Hopefully I can get some of my future work in the mag one day!”