Andy Bonds Road Legal 56 Chevy
I'd been a fan of this car for a while. I knew the old owners who I got on well with and enjoyed many happy days at the race track. The Chevy 56 did really well on track taking many Street Eliminator records. After many years of good service the owners retired the car and it disappeared for a while. As you can imagine many rumours started going around, as being such a well known record breaking car on the scene. Who bought the car, what's been happening with it, where is it going to race and on and on. It wasn't until new owner Andy Bond rung me with some great ideas for some photo shoots on the new car and would I be interested in doing them. I then got to hear which rumours were true or not. Does a bear do its business in the woods! So yes I was happy to help with his request.
I've met Andy a few times over the years as I've been one of the sponsors for the Street Eliminator class. I guess he had seen my work on other class cars and liked what he saw.
Andy has had the car painted not wrapped, yes painted! The results are outstanding, it really looks like its sat in a barn unloved and gone rusty. Andy came up with the idea of doing a 'barn find' photo shoot to unveile the car. He found a suitable farm and we set a date. It was only a few miles from Andy's, so being a street car no trailers were use for this shoot. The barn was perfect for this as was the farms workshop with old tools and machinery as a back drop. Tractor fans amongst you will notice what I've been told is quite a rare beasty in the back ground, but if we could draw you back to what's under the cover that would be appreciated. With the cover placed over the 56, it didn't quite look right. It was a little to clean and stood out to much. Now was the time for the dressing. Andy disappeared and walked back in with a large hand full of straw which soon found its self scatter around the floor and on the cover. It looked better but still not quite there. What would happen to a car parked up over time. If your like me it soon becomes a handy bench where tools you can never find again collect. After placing a few key items on the car the final touch was a few larger items gently laid on the car. We all stood back and agreed that it was about as good as we could get.
Behind the scenes. That cover looks a little too new.
It's all in the dressing up.
We had to get Andy in the shoot. Uncovering his neglected car that has sat years in the barn ;)
Looks as rusty at the back end as well.
A nice touch was to let the tires down, giving it an even more neglected look.
I think as staged photos go, this isn't bad at all. Even the straw on the tractors tyre was carefully place.
I love to use lighting when photographing a vehicle as it really makes them pop and stand out. But the man with a plan (Andy) said can we take more natural looking photos, maybe even a little grainy, to give a more real look. I think we pulled it off.
A little dust off, tires pumped up and some lighting added on the car, this is the result.
The following day we all headed to a disused airfield, So the Chevy could stretch her legs for the very first time.
We had a job keeping up, but just managed to get that 'rolling' shot.
A local scrap yard made a fitting back drop for another mini photo shoot.
This was a funny shot. The crane operator was more nervous than Andy. Andy kept saying go down more, keep going, come on you have a few inches still. One wrong move and the car would be crushed. The poor operator needed a stiff brandy after this maneuver.
After many careful test runs Andy and his team 'Ugly Sister' started to get to grips with the monster 10.6 liter V8 Twin Turbo power plant. And the times gradually started to fall. Tuning it themselves they made small changes at a time (this takes a while but is the best way to do things.)
If you were wondering where the name 'Ugly Sister' comes from. It's because Andy owns and immaculate 55 Chevy. So they named the 56 Ugly Sister.
Best quarter mile time of 6.90 seconds and his best speed across the finish line is 212.92 mph.