LONG DISTANCE HAULER – 1954 FJ Holden

For some people, getting the right car, the right job and the right finish are the most important things. For Trevor Floyd, they were all that mattered. Distance was not an issue. Trevor doesn’t live on the outskirts of the city though; he is not even close to being just around the corner, he actually resides in Kununurra. If you thought you had issues getting parts or building a quality car then spare a thought for poor old Trevor! It is a real mission for the big man.

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Even sourcing the right body for the build had Trevor heading off on a 5,500km return journey to a country town in Victoria. “It was back in ’88 when I first got the car. I rushed into tearing it apart as soon as I got back to my shed and there it sat, in pieces and going nowhere for about 12 years. I just thought I had no chance of actually doing some decent with the car. I had pretty much given up and just left it to lie there” Trevor said. Flicking through a magazine or two, Trevor’s interest was starting to rekindle and after seeing an RB-powered FC Wagon built by some guys in Queensland he was well on his way to getting the fire burning properly. The passion to build the FJ right was ignited!

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“The car was built by a shop over in Brisbane called Oz Rods. The style and the ethos behind the build was something that I liked so I gave the guys a call and it wasn’t too long before I was towing the Effy over there for the build to commence” That trip? Well, a measly 7,000kms return. “The guys had me create a wish list for the car. All of the things I would like to do or have and then they could advise me on what was a reality and wasn’t really an option. Thankfully, it was all a reality. Their honesty and professional approach was a godsend. The team there sent me weekly updates via email – lots of photos and lots of info so I could see how the build was progressing. It made the process a lot easier for me to handle. It wasn’t like I could just jump in the car and head there”

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First on the to-do list was the big one – the bodywork and she needed some attention alright. Trevor wanted to maintain the old school style of the car but add a few modern tweaks here and there. The car now wears VZ SS vents in the front guards, a recessed rear number plate, Lokar tail lights and some neat looking door mirrors. The rear of the tray copped plenty of love to straighten it out whilst a set of mini-tubs were employed and the fuel flap removed and hidden inside, above the custom alloy drop tank. With the body sorted and looking better than ever it was time to choose a colour. “At first all I can think of was a deep, dark blue but after I went to MortorEx in 2011 that idea was turfed right out the window. There was a ’37 Slamback that caught my attention straight away. It was in this wild HOK Tangerine colour and it just stood out like dogs balls. I knew right there and then that was the colour for the ute so I told the guys at Oz Rods to sort it out for me”

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Inside the car, it is picture perfect. The body colour wraps around the hand formed dash, into the doors and over a custom console that houses the entertainment system and sat nav. Lashings of billet goodness appear throughout and look the part combined with that trick looking ’59 Chevy instrument cluster. The seats were originally from a Nissan Pulsar before they were given some extra attention and wrapped in that gorgeous leather goodness. The trick door panels are a standout feature inside.

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To power the machine, Trevor decided that a modern donk was the only option. The sensible thing to do was look to what the General had on offer and it was a V6 Commodore engine that was to be given a new life in the FJ. “I wasn’t really too interested in power really, reliability was more of a concern for me” explained Trevor. That didn’t stop him from warming up the 3.8-litre motor though. The engine copped a set of ported heads, Hypertec pistons and a Lunati camshaft. Custom headers were a necessity. Backing up the motor is a shift kitted Turbo 700 box with an LSD equipped 10-bolt rear end. Of course, the underside had to cop some attention; none of that old junk was going to fit the bill so Oz Rods fitted a Rod Tech front end that incorporates rack and pinion steering and coil over shocks. The back half of the ute was treated to a Rod Tech 4-link that embraces coil overs. Commodore discs reside on all four corners these days and a partially hidden by the 18×8 Avanti wheels on 235/40 series rubber.

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With the build complete, it was up to Trevor to embark on another road trip and this time he went via Adelaide – adding an extra 7,000kms to his travels! The extra drive was worth the effort though with the recently completed FJ snaring Best Interior, Best Body and also Best Paint. To say that Trevor is wrapped with the build is an understatement. “The car is gorgeous. Everything I asked for, the crew at Oz Rods delivered and the quality really is second to none. Those blokes really know how to build a car. I am not too scared to drive it either – that is the whole point of cars right?” Driving? Sheesh, we thought you would be just about sick of that by now mate!

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