Adding the attitude

Dom then once again enjoyed driving the Chevy every day until making a bad decision - he tried to drive it with no brakes and crashed it once again. Unsurprisingly, the car found itself back at Burnham Autos again for repair. Also unsurprisingly, the work wasn’t limited to just what was needed to get it back on the road. The stopping issues were sorted out by a disc brake conversion with under-floor servo and, as the back end had now started to sag, a new rear chassis

section was added. That wasn’t the extent of things

though, as the decision was then made to sort out

the interior. Stripping everything out revealed

some badly rusted metalwork, so this was

cut out and replaced. The bucket seats that

had been fitted some time in the car’s past

were junked in favour of a bench seat, a new

steering column fitted, all the switches re-

positioned and the interior re-trimmed in Zebra

hyde and metalflake vinyl with new red carpets

and headlining.


Having been on the hot rod scene on and off since the 1980’s and having changed many hands during its creation this ‘51 Chevy Kustom has been proudly owned by Dom Gash since 1998.

Wanting to both improve and personalise his ‘Deadsled’ Dom approached Paul initially to have Burnham Autos look at making the ’51 Chevy a ‘pillarless’. Having agreed to take on the work, the car moved into the Burnham Autos’ workshop where the pillarless conversion was completed and electrically-operated Hillman Avenger side windows fitted ( yeah try finding one of those these days!! ).

Dom picked the Sled up and started using it as his daily transport - that is until the day the throttle stuck open as he arrived at work - the car’s progress halted abruptly by a stack of RSJ’s necessitating its return to Burnham Autos.


“a traditional hot rod with psychobilly attitude”

Excerpts reproduced with kind permission of Custom Car magazine.

Switches have been moved under the dash for a cleaner look, while the 24-inch Gennie shifter is topped off with a skull shifter knob that Paul Burnham brought back from Paso. The ‘Flake’ wheel is neatly finished off with a ’59 Caddy tail light centre cap.

Back to Burnham Autos for the rebuild!

The damage incurred from Dom’s collision with the RSJ’s was such that the front 12 inches of sheet metal had to be cut off the car, the subsequent rebuilding seeing the addition of ’53 Mercury headlights,  a ’53 Chevy grille with extra teeth and a ’56 Chevy front bumper, narrowed to fit. Whilst the car was at Burnham’s it would have been rude not to have had some other work done, so air bags were fitted all round, Paul Burnham expaining how the front ones were fitted on top of the wishbones - something worth checking out when you next see the car. The front suspension geometry was then corrected and a flipped Audi 100 power steering rack fitted, a combination which eliminated the horrendous bump steer the car had previously suffered from.