As you've seen on these pages, Bill Goldberg has built a '65 Dodge Coronet two-door sedan with a Hemi engine. It's quite a nice car, but the finishing touches transformed it from a Hemi-powered Coronet sedan to the undeniable look of a '65 factory A-990 Super Stock. The inspiration for its transformation into a race car look-alike was a photo Goldberg found on eBay of an original A-990 sedan owned and raced in 1965 by Richard Schroder. This photo became the roadmap for the period look he wanted for his Dodge.
In 1964 and 1965, Chrysler used a large hoodscoop with a rectangular opening on its Hemi cars. This scoop is as good or better than any "Hemi" fender emblem in defining what's under the hood-it's an icon for the '64 and '65 Hemi cars. Today, Kramer Automotive makes an excellent fiberglass reproduction of that scoop. The bottom flange has tabs on which J-nuts are fitted. The installation is straightforward and calls for centering the scoop on the hood with the rear edge of the scoop matching the rear edge of the hood. The outline of the scoop was drawn on the hood with a grease pencil. With the scoop flipped over, a template was made of the mating surface and its tabs. This was placed on the hood, and the holes were drilled for the mounting screws. There is a small flange at top of the scoop for a J-nut for the center support. A piece of 3/8-inch steel fuel line was cut to length for that support.
The instrument panel features...
The instrument panel features a heater- and radio-delete. Also missing is the control for the blower switch; the hole has been capped with a decorative stainless steel plug. An era-correct Sun Super tach is attached to the top of the instrument panel-redline 6,500.
The Who's Next Hemi with its high-rise manifold sits high in the Dodge engine compartment. So high in fact, the vent tube on the Demon carburetor contacted the underside surface of the hood. The center of the carburetor was marked on the hood, and a circle was drawn for the area to be cut away. The air cleaner selected was a 16-inch-diameter K&N unit designed to fit over the large 850 Demon carburetor. A slightly oblong hole was cut in the hood surface with a saber saw using a fine blade. The hole measures 17.5-inches front to back and 18.5-inches side to side. The extra half-inch on each side is to ensure the air cleaner will not contact the hood when the engine torques side to side on its mounts. The hood's inner structure was cut away by Orange County Rod 'N' Custom when the bodywork was being done. After the hole was cut in the hood's surface, Goldberg used a highly flexible, black plastic, door edge molding to cover the raw cut edge-a low-cost solution that gives a professionally finished look.
In 1965, the color was attractive...
In 1965, the color was attractive and it included details in the seat covers and trim panels that added interest while not adding weight. The rear seat was deleted, and a cardboard panel covers the area where the seatback was previously located.
Chrysler created a functional, but bare bones, interior for its '65 A-990 cars. This '65 Coronet would be an exact reproduction of Chrysler's minimalist approach to race car interiors. Chrysler didn't feel that coat hooks, armrests, or sun visors were required for the original A-990 cars, and neither did Goldberg.
Gary Ball was selected to create the highly accurate door and quarter trim panels. Chrysler replaced the front bench seat with a pair of Dodge A100 van bucket seats, and Ball located a pair and expertly recovered them in the original Champagne colored vinyl in the original pattern. Chrysler attached these small bucket seats to the floor with lightweight fabricated aluminum brackets. Goldberg acquired a set of these brackets from Joe McCaron. Once installed, these brackets provided no adjustment for the seat. In the rear-most installed position, Goldberg was so close to the steering wheel he felt as if he was driving his son's pedal car. He measured the distance from the seatback to the gas pedal on his daily driver. it scaled 43 inches-3 inches longer than the factory installed position of the buckets-so new holes were drilled in the floor, and reinforcements added to the attaching bolts to relocate the seat brackets 3-inches rearward. These brackets usually attach to the floor with two bolts each, but Goldberg added an additional bolt to each seat for safety. Now his 6-foot, 4-inch frame fits comfortably in the car.