In the build: Slammed FB wagon, Cummins-powered Ford Jailbar and more!

Rescued FB Holden wagon, Cummins diesel-powered Ford 'Jailbar' pick-up, family heirloom HQ Monaro, slammed 454-cube C10, a Drag Challenge-bound VN Berlina plus more


Presenting a mind-blowing array of cars in the build, from pages of the 2023 Street Machine Yearbook.

Steven Serone
FB Holden

“My dad and I are building this 1960 FB wagon in our shop – everything from engine to chassis work – and it’s almost finished.

We found the wagon out in a paddock and thought we’d save it from rusting away, so once we got it back home, we cut the whole floor out and started from scratch with the chassis.

We grafted in an LX Torana front end, and out back we added a universal four-link from The Rod Shop. It runs a tunnel-rammed, dry-sumped LS1, backed by a TH350 and Ford nine-inch diff.”

And true to his word, the FB was indeed finished in short order, with Steve bringing it (and his Drag Challenge-proven EJ sedan) to Summernats 36 for some cruising and skids.

Paul White
1947 Ford ‘Jailbar’ pick-up

“I’m Alister from OPM Fabrications, and we’re currently building this Cummins diesel-powered Ford ‘Jailbar’ for our customer Paul White.

As you can see, a lot of custom work is going into this one. We’ve created a new 150mm heavy-duty, full mitred and fish-plated chassis as the base for the build, and installed a front live axle assembly (custom designed and fabricated in-house) that uses Superior trailing arms and has been engineered by Dr Tim.

Out back, there’s a fabricated 35-spline nine-inch diff, Superior trailing arms and Panhard bar. The engine is a 5.9-litre Cummins Gen 2 12-valve turbo-diesel, backed by a 47RE transmission.

We’ve also installed an AirDog fuel lift pump and a custom keg fuel tank. Plenty of work still to go, but it’s coming along nicely.” Words: Alister Spong

Justin Dawson
Holden HQ Monaro

“I started the build on this 1971 HQ about three years ago to remember my dad, who suddenly passed away. This car has been a part of my family for over 35 years – Mum and Dad actually started dating when dad first started the build on the car in the mid-80s! I can’t count the number of people that tried to buy it off Dad over the years, but he was so stubborn he never sold it – and thank god he didn’t, as I can’t think of a better way for his grandkids to remember him.

For the first part of the build, I’ll be running the 253 that Dad ran in it, but one day I hope to replace it with something bigger. For now, it’ll be a pretty sweet cruiser. As far as rust repairs go, there was barely anything – Dad had it stored undercover in Glen Innes for 30 years, and the cold, dry air definitely helped it, as there was only a small amount of rust under the front windscreen to cut out.

Most of the repairs that needed to be done was simply due to the car having had copious amounts of crap stored on top of it over the years. I finally pick the car up this weekend from the paint shop, where it’s been for almost two years. You can see the whole build on my Instagram page @oldboys_hqmonaro.”

Arthur Hoad
Toyota HiLux

““Buckle up, gearheads! Picture this: a 1975 Toyota HiLux, the granddaddy of cool, currently being transformed into a street beast that’ll make even Optimus Prime do a double take! We’re not just building a car; we’re crafting a masterpiece on four wheels.

Under the bonnet, we’ll be throwing in a modified 1KD-FTE engine, which will be backed with an auto ’box swiped from a HiAce – because who said Toyotas can’t have a little family reunion? The electrical system is also getting a futuristic make-over with plenty of Haltech wizardry.

This ’Lux is going to be low and slow – so low it’s practically hugging the pavement like it owes it money – and thanks to airbags, it will be able to drop it like it’s hot at the push of a button! And just when you thought it couldn’t get any cooler, we’ve strapped on a service-body toolbox – because this HiLux doesn’t just ride, it hustles!”

Simon Kingswell
Chevrolet C10

“My C10 was featured in Readers’ Rockets back in September 2021, but it’s undergone quite a bit of surgery since! My mate Dave and I are screwing together an ex-USA 454 for it using a Scat stroker crank and rods and Icon pistons to give us 496 cubes.

Joe at JC Engines has done a cracking job on all the machining and balancing, and he also went through the Aeroflow heads. There is also a 1050cfm Air Systems carb to go on top of a Dart manifold. We are hoping to have the mill fully assembled and on an engine dyno soon! A purpose-built, CAD-designed rear clip was procured to suit my body-dropped truck, and Clint at Alternative Metal Fabrication stitched it all together and moulded it into the front end of the frame.

After a bit of voodoo in the front end, it now it sits the sills on the ground! Clint also fabbed up the sides for the front tubs and fitted them to the inner guards, and I’m very happy with the result. It’s running 15×10 steelies on the rear wrapped in Mickey Thompsons, while up front are 17×7 rollers clad in 235 rubber.

Brakes are Wilwood discs with six-pot calipers up front and four-pots out back. The TH400 is still yet to be assessed and potentially rebuilt. GJ Drivelines provided a three-inch, single-piece tailshaft, and the cab tunnel has been raised to clear it.

A brand-new airbag system will replace the worn-out gear that was previously in the car, while the plan for the external bodywork is simple: leave it be! I hope to have it back on the road within the next 12 months, and I want to extend my thanks to all the people and businesses that have supported me to this stage! You can find progress pics on Instagram @simes_slammed_rides.”

Josh Niclair
HR Holden wagon

“I bought my 1967 HR wagon in 2005 as my first car. I enjoyed my P-plate years in it with a 186, three-on-the-tree and bench seat. After that, it went bucket seats, a 202 six, VK injection and a Supra five-speed.

Nowadays, it’s running a VN 5.0-litre V8, auto ‘box, Commodore diff and disc brakes, and with a bench seat and column-shift once again. The custom wheels were made from a set of vE space-savers.

I’m currently in the middle of doing a full custom leather and suede interior; it will be my business card on wheels. It’s been a lot of work, but I’ve done all of it in the shed with some mates. There will be plenty of cruising and car shows to come.”

Blayke Pettersen
Holden VN Berlina

“I’m currently giving my VN Berlina a complete overhaul, doing all the work myself, including the motor, fab work, tubbing it to run 275s, and plumbing it all up.

It will run a 5.3-litre iron block LS that I have built from the ground up, and I have also installed an 80mm turbo kit and made all the pipework for the four-inch stainless exhaust system. Behind the LS will be a fully manualised, reverse-pattern, transbraked TH400 gearbox, and a shortened nine-inch diff with 35-spline axles and a Strange centre.

I’m now getting close to being able to fire it up, and I’ll then get it ready for Drag Challenge next year to use it for what it was built for.”

Got a sweet ride that’s currently in the build and want to share it with our readers? Email photos of it (2MB+ each) along with some details on the build to: [email protected].