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Cars > Challenges > “The Frigidaire” Vs “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

 

CorvairJim’s Profile Photo

CorvairJim

M–51
Norristown, Pennsylvania
United States

Crazyfast79TA’s Profile Photo

Crazyfast79TA

M–47
Bovey, Minnesota
United States

 

1961 Chevrolet Corvair Greenbrier Deluxe

“The Frigidaire”

1995 GMC 3500 Rally Van

“Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

 
Photo of: 1961 Chevrolet Corvair
Photo of: 1995 GMC 3500 Rally Van
 

Head to Head

 

About “The Frigidaire”

(Disclaimer - The picture shown with this van and all the pictures in it's photo album were found online. NONE of them are of the actual van!)

After my now ex wife left me with our kids in the spring of 1991, I traveled from my home in the suburban Philadelphia area to where they were in Cleveland about one weekend a month to visit the kids. My ex insisted that the kids do any traveling with her and that I follow in my car because there wasn't enough room in my Beretta for me, her, the three kids, and at least one friend of hers that she insisted she have along with her at all tiomes so that I wouldn't "Kidnap" the kids... Which, technically speaking, is what SHE did when she took them across state lines! I solved the problem by showing up one weekend with this 1961 Corvair Greenbrier, a 9-passenger van! She had said she HATED my Corvairs, but the van was running, inspected, and insured, and it had enough room for not only the five of us, but FOUR friends if she wanted them along!

The weekend before Christmas, We were at a mall in the Cleveland area doing some gift shopping for the kids. When we were getting into the 'Brier to go to dinner, a man came running across the parking lot to us and knocked on my window. All out of breath, he told me: "Man, you HAVE TO sell me this van! This is the coolest thing I've seen in years!" I explained to himthat I had just bought it a few months ago and that I wasn't done having fun with it yet, and besides, I needed it myself. He said fore me to name my price, so I told him an exhorbinant number and that he'd have to drive me home. He said that he'd have to work on the money, but the ride home wouldn't be a problem... Then I told him that I lived well over 400 miles away! I pointed out the Pennsylvania inspection sticker and told him I live just outside Philly... For some reason, that soured the deal.
My ex was upset about this, since she was so down on Corvairs and had just had her nose rubbed in it in front of the kids and three of her friends!

About “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

We bought this van in September '08 after we got married. We drove it down to Valley Fair that October. Then in November we drove it to Ohio to pack some of my stuff up and drag my S-10 back home. That was a great idea, but we had it way overloaded. Coming through Chicago, it started snowing bad. Somewhere in Wisconsin, just when the roads were getting horrible and cars and trucks (some of them 4x4s) were spinning and sliding off the road in front of us, overdrive blew out and from there on it got worse! We made it to Minnesota, but passing through Duluth, we didn't know if we'd make it. We got back with a burned up Transmission. The van sat at my work waiting on us to rebuild the trans. We finally got it rebuilt, with the kit we got for my S-10. But was a fail. So the van sat from January '09 until this past March when I broke down and got a used trans for it. We scored big on it. It came from a van with 105,000 miles. Doesn't sound great, but when I went to pick it up, found out it was a GM Reman unit! I installed it and it worked perfectly! Our van had about 111,000 miles on it then. We drove it to Wisconsin Dells this past July. No a problem at all! Rear A/C worked great! Trans was great! We had a blast! And I've been driving it everyday, everywhere, for everything since then! It still has less than 120,000 miles on it.

 

Specs for “The Frigidaire”

Rebuilt 1964-vintage 110 h.p. 164 c.i.d. engine
Corvair car 4-speed transaxle (The "Truck" transaxle has closer ratios - good for hauling things, not so good for highway use)
3.89:1 Posi rear
Highest speed I saw on the speedo was about 80 mph.

Specs for “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

350 V-8
4L60E trans
Rear Heat
Rear A/C
Power Windows
Privacy Glass
Three Row Seating (10 passenger)

 

Factory Options for “The Frigidaire”

Corvair 95 Deluxe Trim group
Gas-Fired Heater
AM Radio
Second and Third Row Bench Seats
Trailer Package
"California" Mirrors
Luggage Rack

Factory Options for “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

in with "Specs"

 

Mods for “The Frigidaire”

205-70R14 Radial Tires
14" "Mag Style" Wheel Covers (From a '65 Impala - the same style I had on my '66 Monza, "Ashley" in the 13" size)
AM/FM/Cassette Stereo

Mods for “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

Drove into woods by step-son to avoid a deer

 

Photo Albums 1 – 1 of 1

Cover photo of "The Frigidaire" album
"The Frigidaire"
Photos: 10
 

Previous Photo Albums Next Photo Albums

Photo Albums 1 – 1 of 1

Cover photo of "Big Bertha" album
"Big Bertha"
Photos: 5
 

Previous Photo Albums Next Photo Albums

 

Vote This challenge has ended!

Points for The Frigidaire Total Votes Points for Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha
24 8 16

 

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Cars > Challenges > “The Frigidaire” Vs “Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha”

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