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Jerry Crews' "Hurricayne" 1966 Chevy Biscayne
(from Volume 15, Issue 162)

At a young age, builder Troy Trepanier has already produced many cars that have made onlooker’s jaws drop due to the imagination and attention to detail he puts into each one. As a result, his client’s cars have gone on to win many awards, and become famous in their own right. His shop, Rad Rides By Troy, located in Manteno, Illinois, has produced masterpiece after masterpiece. If you’ve kept even a slight eye on national magazines or TV shows in recent years you’ve likely seen some of his creations, including the ‘39 Chevy “Predator”, a ‘54 Plymouth Savoy with a Viper V-10 engine dubbed “Sniper”, an all-wheel drive ‘32 Ford Roadster called the “QuadraDeuce”, the radical 1,180hp twin-turbo ‘62 Chevy “Chicayne”, eBay Motor’s “Fast Forward Fastback” ‘67 Mustang, and the “Sickfish” 1970 Barracuda, just to name a few.

Orlando, Florida resident Jerry Crews was no stranger to Troy Trepanier and the cars he has produced. Jerry also was no stranger to performance, having campaigned the “Mad Medic” 1956 Chevy 210 across the country in the D/Gas drag racing ranks during his younger days. Over the years Jerry also became friends with John Lingenfelter, while supplying John with crankshafts for his monstrous engines. When Lingenfelter passed away, Jerry remembered a ZL1 block John had tucked away to build a street engine of his own, so Jerry bought it to put into his 1966 Chevy Biscayne. The intention was to bump the motor up to 540 cubic inches, revamp the Biscayne’s appearance a little, and drive the combo on the 2006 Hot Rod Power Tour. However that simple scheme never happened, as instead Jerry wound up calling Rad Rides By Troy and decided to go all-out with the complete project instead. Jerry may have missed the Power Tour, but as you can see the results were worth the wait.

The exterior changes were kept subtle yet effective, including removing the factory trim and emblems, ditching the windshield wipers, and stretching the wheelwells slightly to better frame the custom Billet Specialties rims (19x8.5 front, 20x10.5 rear) wrapped in BFGoodrich rubber. Once massaged to perfection, the body was painted metallic medium gray - later nicknamed “Train Smoke”. As with all of Troy’s creations a cool nickname comes along for the ride, so the playful “Hurricayne” moniker was included behind the front wheelwells with a nice, tasteful graphic.

Underneath you’ll find uniquely adapted Detroit Speed ‘68 Camaro tubular upper control arms up front, with the lower arms modified to accommodate the coilover arrangement now present. In combination with a Concept One rack steering system and Hotchkis goodies this not only gave the Hurricayne better footing, but along with other changes shed some pounds for a favorable 50/50 front-to-rear weight distribution.

Under the hood the Lingenfelter acquired ZL1 aluminum engine displaces 540 cubes, wears Dart cylinder heads, a Dart 4500 single plane manifold, and a 1050cfm Holley Dominator carburetor by Jerry’s buddy Bo Laws. Combined with Rad Rides custom built headers, 3-inch stainless steel exhaust, and Flowmaster Hushpower II mufflers the package produced 652 horsepower at 6,100 rpm, with 657 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 rpm. With performance in mind Jerry chose to also install a Tremec 5-speed transmission, with a narrowed Chevy 12-bolt rear end housing 3.42:1 gears. However, as impressive as the motor itself is, the engine bay also draws lots of attention due to the clean look that Troy is known for in this area. That includes no wires being visible, and the absolutely slick air cleaner.

Opening the doors, the Baked Bean colored leather was tastefully installed by Griffin Interior out of Bend, Oregon. The roll cage is tucked so closely inside the car it almost escapes notice, and a set of custom built seats with perforated leather inserts ensure comfort. The tastefully done dash includes Classic Instruments with brushed aluminum bezels to match the brushed steering wheel, shifter, and door panel accents. The Hurricayne is equipped with a Rockford Fosgate 10-speaker, 2,000 watt integrated audio and navigation system - but Jerry told us that the majority of the time he prefers hearing the tones of the healthy motor when driving.

There is no doubt that the Hurricayne blows everyone away that lays eyes on it. The more you look, the more attention to detail that you discover, and the more impressive it becomes as a whole. The car was a Goodguys Street Machine of the Year finalist in 2007, but that is not what compelled Jerry to build the car. Like all of us he just wanted to have a fun car....it’s just that he could afford the likes of Troy Trepanier to build one for him. If you get the chance to see the Hurricayne in person, allocate plenty of time to soak up all the masterful craftsmanship. There are surprises everywhere. CN