Video: Getting Dad’s Ute ready to road-trip!

In this episode of Carnage, Scotty puts the finishing touches on his dad’s VE Valiant ute to get it ready for some big miles

Photographers: Matt Hull
Videographers: Matt Hull

It’s nearly roadtrip time for Scotty and his Dad’s VE Valiant ute, but before that he takes us through the last little bits of prep he had to do for the 3600 kilometre round trip from Melbourne to Queensland’s Willowbank Raceway in this episode.

For those out of the loop, Dad’s Ute is a 1968 VE Valiant ute Scotty’s father left him when he unfortunately passed away from cancer around 10 years ago. Last year Scotty got to work reviving the old ute, building a fresh 318 small-block for it, fixing the rust and getting it roadworthy.

After COVID-19 curtailed his chances of taking it up for Mopar Sunday last year, this year it’s all systems go. Having already registered the car, Scotty had been driving it around in preparation for the big trip and identified some small areas to improve on before the big trek.

First was the RPM on the highway. The old 318 loves a drink, so to keep the fuel use somewhat reasonable during the long freeway stretches Scotty fitted a switch for the lockup converter, as well as some taller rear tyres to keep the RPM nice and low at highway cruising speed.

While he was in there he also fitted a tacho, which’ll be just as beneficial at the track as it will be on the road. Last time Scotty raced the VE at Heathcote it was without any RPM reading, so hopefully it’ll be one ingredient to help him crack a new PB at Willowbank.

The taller street rubber would be great for the high miles, but fairly useless on the track. To remedy that, Scotty nicked a used pair of 235 drag radials from the VN and had them fitted to a shiny new pair of 15×7 smooth steel wheels, so traction shouldn’t be a problem at Willowbank.

With all that done Scotty loaded up the back of the ute, and in the next episode of Carnage you’ll see him hit the road for the drive up to Queensland – with plenty of drama along the way. Don’t miss it!