1972 Custom Corvette Interview
Below is an interview Vini Madrigal at SEMA
-Owner of the 1972 Corvette-
Rick: "We are with Vini Madrigal at the very front of the SEMA Auto Show and this is a 1972 Vette but it looks pretty extraordinary to me. You've done a lot of work on this thing, customized a lot of parts. Let's start at the bottom and work our way up. What did you do to this?"
Vini: "Well as far as the bottom side goes, everything as far as suspension and drive train goes it's an LS3 525 Chevy Performance connected to a 6 speed transmission. The suspension is Ridetech. They're upper, lower control arms. The new true track turn system up front and all there stuff goes the same in the rear."
Vini: "As far as the top goes, everything is very subtle. We haven't tried to do anything too far out the box but just make the fit and finish really nice. So the main things that we changed that are big is we made the rear spoiler, side vents and we did everything to the engine bay. The engine bay is all hand built, the intake for the motor. The firewall's been shaved and everythings been smoothed up as far as the rest of the car goes too."
Vini: "In general everything it's all fairly stocked except for the gaps have all been dialed in. The bumpers have been sucked in, the peak taken out of them and so on."
Rick: 'I've owned one of these things. Very loose, they rattled a lot. You've kind of addressed all that and when I stood over there and saw it from a distance, as soon as I saw it I said that thing has been fixed."
Vini: "Yeah you could look at the headlights, the headlights on these cars don't ever shut level and they don't ever have the same gap all the way around. The door panels are always sticking out. The bottoms of the doors are in and out. In general it just makes that Corvette fit bad but I guess at that point and time that's just the way stuff was. The kind of competition we have nowadays, if the stuff doesn't fit right you don't have anything. So everything has been stepped up to a whole different level at this point."
Rick: "I don't know what it is but the end result is it looks more modern."
Vini: "It does. As far as looks wise it was fairly stocked but up to date. So it's been lowered, got the big wheels. It's got the big brakes on it. It's got the modern drive train, chassis and suspension so you can drive it everyday. You can actually beat on it. You can use it and abuse it but you're still driving a 1972 Corvette as far as the outside goes. That's the big thing nowadays, people taking there old cars and making them handle like a new car and actually being able to drive them as to where in the past they looked cool but just couldn't drive them. It wasn't any fun but you got all the modern amenities in this. All the new gauges and that kind of stuff to where you can actually enjoy the car and not have to worry about breaking down or hitting something. That kind of stuff."
Rick: "So on the technical side before we wrap it up, how do you make it fit better because when I'm looking at them I think that's the way it is so do you put more bolts on it or what?"
Vini: "It's a fibreglass body which we do a whole lot of metal work. That's what we're known for so this is kind of a new thing for us. On a metal car you just kind of beat and bang it until the thing fits and add and take off and so on. On a glass car you can't do that. If somethings to long you have to make it shorter. If something sticks out you have to cut it in half and make it narrower."
"So it's one of those deals where you have to add material where as in metal you can manipulate the metal around to make it fit. On glass you can't bend fibreglass. It just is what it is. So you either have to split it and raise it or split it and lower it then just put it all back together and basically just fighting it until the thing fit as good as you can get it to fit."
Rick: "Thank you so much for joining us on the program. Our privilege."