Keith Ashley's 1951 Chevrolet

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The starting point of Larry Ernst's 1951 Chevrolet clone.[1]
Photo courtesy of Keith Ashley.

1951 Chevrolet Bel Air restyled by Keith Ashley of Lake Leelanau, Michigan.

In 1995 Keith started cloning a Larry Ernst's 1951 Chevrolet Bel Air. Keith saw the car while he was in high school. It was the first custom car he had ever seen, and he never forgot it. Keith knew Burns Berryman, and he watched the tedious restoration of the original car. Keith decided to clone the second version of the car with the tri-color paint job. "This car was introduced at the Sacramento Autorama and the GNRS in 1999, fulfilling another dream of exhibiting at these two shows." After a 20 year run of ownership, Keith sold the clone, and it disappeared to Oregon.

The car was built to be a clone of the second version of Larry Ernst's 1951 Chevrolet except for some minor changes suggested by Harry Bradley. The grille was made to fit the grille opening better than the original. Two Canadian 1951 Ford Meteor grille bars were cut up to make one good one, with no success. Randy Church Restorations made the grill from scratch, using only the original grill teeth for starters.[2] The Appleton S-552 spotlights were the original spots installed by Barris when they built the original Larry Ernst Chevy. Keith bought these from Burns Berryman who restored the original. Keith had them restored and put them on.[3]



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