READER AD: 1962 Chevrolet Nova Convertible

Reader Larry B recent found this first year Chevy Nova Convertible in a barn, where it had been for the past 30 years. You don’t often find early Nova Convertibles, so he decided to buy it. He’s since decided to move it along and let someone else take this project on. It has some rust issues but looks to be fairly solid considering that it’s a Convertible that was in Missouri most, if not all, of its life. If you would like to fix this Nova up, you can find it in Quincy, Illinois with a $4,500 asking. You can get more info and contact Larry via the link below.

What Makes It Special? This is a true barn find and 1962 is the first year for the Nova!

Body Condition: The outer body has surface rust but no rust thru. However is does need front and rear floor pans. The trunk pan is solid.

Mechanical Condition: I am not sure about the mechanical condition as I just pulled it out of a barn less than a week ago. The fellow that I got it from told me that it has been in the barn for over 30 years. I have a clean Missouri title which states the previous owner bought it in 1971.

Seller’s Listing: Here on AntiqueCar

  • Asking Price: $4,500
  • Location: Quincy, IL 62301
  • Title Status: Clean

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Comments

  1. Robert White

    When it comes to Chevy-II parts finds this car is representative of the Holy Grail of finds being a convertible. I have only encountered one other Chevy-II convertible in all my days of looking at cars. That convertible was equally as rough as this one is currently. If a part for the convertible top was ever needed it would be near to impossible to ever find one as the last Chevy-II convertible I saw was 25 years ago and I have not seen one until today.

    Bob

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  2. Luki

    There are 3 1962 Nova Convertibles for sale on Classics Auto Trader right now.

    10
    • Robert White

      Smart ass!

      Heck, I was talking about real life and not what one can find on Internet as opposed to just being a car guy visiting junkyards over the years. I’m sure they can be found on Internet search engines but how often do you see them listed on Barn Finds or anywhere for that matter? Is this the first one listed in the history of Barn Finds?

      Bob

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      • Luki

        Sorry Bob you didn’t mention you were a Flinstone not a Jetson. I just assume most people know how to use a search engine.
        If you’re looking for cars to restore you might want to stay away from junkyards and try the internet.

        3
    • Nate

      And they’re all beautiful and priced pretty reasonably too! Why would anybody buy this one for $4500 when they could get a beautifully restored one for $16k to $25k

      2
  3. art

    This car is a gem, even in this condition. If Chevrolet could make this again, they would be back on top.
    Beautiful lines…I wish I could grab it and restore it. Nice.

    2
  4. Howard A Member

    I had a friend years ago (80’s) with this exact car he was planning to restore. It looked just like this, and thought for a minute it might have been his, but not from Missouri. Not sure how rare they were, but Bob is right, we didn’t have the internet, and finding a car was much more involved than pushing a few buttons. The only way you found something was either what someone dragged to a junkyard or word of mouth. We’ve come a long way in looking for cars and we’re paying for it today.

    2
    • Robert White

      These kids today don’t understand the old junkyard trek as we understand it, frankly. They don’t grasp the decades long search for key parts and they certainly don’t get all the vicious junkyard dogs that have attacked us over the years either. I spent about half an hour standing on top of a junkyard car one day when I was out at the junkyard. Two junkyard dogs decided that I looked like a potential meal one day and only after half an hour did they finally get bored enough to move on.

      These young kids have no understanding of the fear that one experiences just to get a car part.

      Oh to be young again, eh! ;-)

      cheers, Bob

      10
    • Mike

      Another place we used to look for projects back in the 80’s was the back row of every fly by night used car lot within a 30 mile radius. I’m sure you guys knew where all of em were too lol! I found my first Chevelle there. It was a 66 Malibu with a blown straight 6 (230 maybe?) and Power Glide. Nothing special there but the sheet metal and interior were near mint! $200 later, it was mine! Many Saturdays were spent scrounging junk yards for parts needed to swap in a big block, Muncie and 12 bolt. I actually got pretty lucky when I found a wrecked 427/390 hp-4 speed Vette. I bought the engine and trans for $300 back in 84 or so and the yard workers pulled them and loaded them in dads pickup. I REALLY miss “back when”!

      3
  5. sluggo

    I did a double take when I saw this one. Circa 1985 there was exactly like this, even the same int/ext colors in a raffle at a truckstop just outside Boise Idaho. Same condition as well. I went nuts as I never one before or since and wanted it badly. I of course entered the contest but not before trying to trade that truckstop several other cars including a 63 or 64 Nova. This was on I-84 just west of Boise up a slight rise and was big truck stop. I was stationed at Mt Home AFB up the road and the reason it excited me is I owned a 63 SS and a 64 SS but figured that convertible would be way cooler to own. When they turned me down I wrote my name, phone and mailing addy on slips of paper with offers to buy or trade the car and stuffed them all over the car so whoever won it might contact me.

    Never happened and long since forgot about it, and went overseas in a PCS. Until today. I know these cars inside and out and if anyone buys it feel free to reach out & ill share my knowledge and experience rebuilding these things front to back.

    They have their issues and can be addressed, but rather than learn the hard way as I did,, well, happy to share. They were an interesting concept and designed to be modular, they have utter crap for handling and brakes, but can be addressed. Hotrodded they are scary fast, especially with dodgy suspension and brakes. (I can tell you stories of driving in Europe with mine). Originally they had the “Thrifty 4, Satiny 6” and in 64 came out with a V8 with a 283 and optional Muncie 4 speed which mine had and was a potent hot rod.
    Parts are readily availible now days, as well as select upgrades, Used to be Bumpers and other parts were unobtainable but not anymore. Parts are well supplied.

    *I also have the fixings to make one of these into a stick shift. All the important bits.

    3
    • Robert White

      By ‘fixings’ you mean the Z bar, eh.

      Nice promotional advertisement. Never saw that one before, cool.

      These cars were selling for about $1750.00 USD in 63 roughly I think?

      Bob

      2
  6. sluggo

    I have the pedal assy (The whole thing hangs off a bracket under the dash and steering column and clutch and brake pedal hang off it, the thru bolts also intersect with the master cyl for the brakes, and the steering column tucks in and partially supported by it, Not an easy part to source) The linkages to the Z bar, the Z bar itself and the linkages to the clutch throw out. Bell housing and flywheel and clutch.

    (Im keeping the Muncie,, its going in my wifes Chevelle, She commented when we bought the Chevelle project that “I know you have a Muncie stashed in the barn”. God,, I love that girl!)

    Heres a little known factoid. The oem 283 engine blocks, as well as the inline 6s had a unique boss location on the block for the knob that locates the Z bar. If you dont have a correct block or swap engines the Z bar wont line up. I had to make an adapter when I swapped in my 327 and I still have that.

    (Elms Speed shop in Mt Home Idaho assisted me with this back in the 1980s)

    So, anyone wanting to swap in a stick shift, you need these parts or solve the problem with running a hydraulic clutch, but if you want OEM original, those parts are kinda hard to source.
    I think I also have the center console plate for the 63,, they had a big metal plate that was chromed for a floor shifter console for the Auto trans. (might fit other years) The 63 I had had 4 lug wheels (the 64 V8 had 5 lugs) and a straight 6, and powerglide auto trans. Mine also had a weird power steering assist as well.

    While I thought my 63 would be more collectible, it turns out the 64 with the V8 is way more valuable. I have since sold both cars, but still have some odds and ends,, Probably should ebay them, but mentioning it here if someone buys this car.

    **I wish I could have kept them all and many others I had but serving in the military is difficult to store and own vehicles, tools and shop equip, I did pay for storage to store some stuff while overseas, but there are limits to what you can do. I turned into a bit of a hoarder since getting out, compensating for living out of a duffle bag for years.

    2
    • Robert White

      Hobbies get modified over the years, eh. Life has a way of changing one’s hobbies as one ages and traverses career
      goals. I got completely out of cars back in the 90s knowing that high performance was pushing on costs and time. It’s a yong man’s sport, methinks. I remember installing my aluminum 66 Acadian Canso powerglide after an engine swap where I just crawled under the jacked up car and rested the powerglide on my chest and stomach whilst I manhandled the transmission into position with my knees and hands pushing up while I was lying on my back on the cement floor. I think I broke a small rib when I was doing it because it took months for that injury to disappear.

      Today I am moving into old tube radio restoration instead of old cars because I don’t need a big garage & storage space to have that hobby. Electronics is better now that I am older too as I would rather do mechanical instead of electronics when I was younger.

      Being in the military is a whole new ballgame that I could never really understand as I have never had to ship out to wherever they send you guys n’ gals on missions or assignments. I don’t think I would like living out of a duffle bag either so I fully get what you mean.

      Thanks for serving.

      cheers, Bob

      2
  7. newfieldscarnut

    I think a picture of the undercarriage , being a unibody , would be very telling .

  8. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    Had a 64 years ago. 194 straight six three speed column shift standard. It was my family car back when I was in my twenties with wife and three little girls,all grown now with families of their own, they even have grandchildren. That sure was a long time ago. Seems to me I saw a tv restoration show one time, they were rebuilding (hot ridding) a 63. Seems like they said these cars were one year for parts cars. Now I don’t know for sure about that but I do know that’s how it is with 63 Falcons. Been there, done that.
    God bless America

    1
  9. sluggo

    John, i have worked on a number of these and a 63 & 64 extensively as well as had some friends with 65-66-67s.
    I can tell it depends on WHAT parts you are talking about. Basically 62-64 were mostly the same, 65 and up had some stuff interchange but body was different.
    62 & 63 had light duty suspension and brakes, and all I saw had 4 lug wheels (makes custom rim choices limited) I cant say for all 64s but my V8 version had 5 lugs.
    There was some small trim and body differences. I know the tail lights differed slightly & IIRC some had the tail lights as 4 across? 2 on the trunk lid and 2 on the rear fenders. Both my 63 SS and 64 SS had just 2 tail lights. There was actually a few sub models, And many were just called Chevy 11.
    Wiki does a better job, But Ill just say, it just depends on what parts, Some interchanged all the way up into the late 60s but you are right about the Falcons as Chevy was copying them. Believe it or not some suspension parts interchanged with the Chevy from Ford.
    IMHO,, the Suspension design was terrible and the Fred Puhn Engineering book on suspension uses the Chevy 11/Nova and Falcon/Mustang suspensions as an example of what NOT to have for suspension design. (Terrible!) The whole geometry is wrong and they camber over so hard in cornering you end up with a contact patch the size of a dime or at best a .25 cent piece on each front tire.
    But keep in mind, it was intended as a economy compact car, not a performance car.

    See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chevrolet_Chevy_II_/_Nova

    After the rear-engine Chevrolet Corvair was outsold by the conventional Ford Falcon in 1960, Chevrolet completed work on a more conventional compact car that would eventually become the Chevy II.

    The car was of semi-unibody construction having a bolt on front section joined to its unitized cabin and trunk rear section, available in two-door coupe and four-door sedan configurations as well as convertible and station wagon versions. The 1962 Chevy II came in three series and five body styles—the 100 Series, 300 Series and Nova 400 Series. A 200 series was also introduced, but was discontinued almost immediately.[2] The sportiest-looking of the lot was the $2,475 Nova 400 convertible—23,741 were produced that year.[3]

    1962 Chevy II Nova 400 convertible

    1963 Chevrolet Chevy II Nova 400 4-Door Station Wagon
    Available engines for the Chevy II in 1962 and 1963 included Chevrolet’s inline-four engine of 153 cu in (2.5 l) and a new third generation 194 cu in (3.2 l) Chevrolet straight-6 engine. All Chevy II engines featured overhead valves. A V8 engine was not available in 1962 and 1963.

    Absent documentation, dealer installed “options” of a V8 in a 1962 or 1963 is a myth. Refer to the GM Heritage Center 1963 Chevrolet Nova information available on the GM Heritage site.[4] In addition, that documentation does not list a V8 engine as a possible dealer installed option.

    In 1962 and 1963 the Nova option for the Chevy II was available in a convertible body style, and a two-door hardtop was available from 1962 to 1965, although the hardtop was dropped when the 1964 models were first introduced, but subsequently brought back to the line later in the model year. Like all Chevy two-door hardtops, the body style was marketed as the Sport Coupe.

    For 1963, the Chevy II Nova Super Sport was released, under RPO Z03.[5] It featured special emblems, instrument package, wheel covers, side moldings, bucket seats, and floor shifter, and was available only on the 400 series sport coupe and convertible.[5] Cost of the package was US$161.40, equal to $1,320.85 today.[6] As mentioned above, the Nova option could not officially have V8 engines at this time—the standard SS engine was the six-cylinder (this was also applicable to the Impala (and later the early Chevelle c. 1964–65) when the SS was a sport and appearance package)—but small-block V8 engine swaps were commonplace among enthusiasts.

    For 1964, sales were hit hard by the introduction of the new Chevelle,[7] and the Chevy II received its first factory V8 option, a 195 hp (145 kW) 283 cu in (4.6 l), as well as a 230 cu in (3.8 l) straight six.[8] The six-cylinder was actually the third generation engine, replacing the second generation Stovebolt. Rival manufacturer Chrysler had earlier developed the Slant Six in their Plymouth Valiant, a Chevy II competitor, when the cars were introduced to the public in late 1959 as 1960 models.

    At introduction in the fall, the hardtop coupe was missing in the lineup, contributing to a loss of sales (as well as showroom appeal). Chevrolet subsequently reintroduced the Sport Coupe in the lineup later in the model year, and it remained available through 1967.

    1965 Chevrolet Chevy II Nova 4-door sedan (with aftermarket wheels)
    The 1965 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova were updated with cleaner front-end styling courtesy of a fresh full-width grille with new integrated headlight bezels. Parking lights moved down to the deep-section bumper, and sedans gained a new roofline.

    Taillight and backup lights were restyled, as was the rear cove. The 1965 Chevy II came in entry-level 100 form or as the posher Nova 400, each in three body styles. The Nova Super Sport came as a Sport Coupe only, and its production dipped to just 9,100 cars. Super Sports had a new brushed-chrome console with floor-mounted four-speed manual transmission or Powerglide automatic, but a column-mounted three-speed manual remained standard.

    Bucket seats wore textured vinyl trim, and the dashboard held ammeter, oil pressure, and temperature gauges. An expanded engine lineup gave customers six power choices of the six-cylinder or V-8 engines; the four-cylinder was available only in the 100.

    But, for Chevy II enthusiasts, 1965 is best remembered as the year the Chevy II became a muscle car. A 327 cu in (5.4 l) V8 was available with up to 300 hp (220 kW), suddenly putting Nova SS performance practically on a par with the GTO, 4-4-2, and 271 bhp Mustang 289s-at least in straight-line acceleration. Midyear also brought a more potent 283 with dual exhausts and 220 horsepower.

    The Chevelle Malibu SS continued to eat away at the Nova SS market: Out of 122,800 Chevy IIs built for 1965 (compared to 213,601 Falcons), only 9,100 were Super Sports. For 1965, Chevy II had the dubious distinction of being the only car in GM’s lineup to suffer a sales decline. It is possible that some Chevy II sales were lost to the brand-new ’65 Corvair, which addressed virtually all its 1960–64 problems, got rave reviews from automotive journals and featured sleek new (Z-body) styling along with a brand-new chassis.

    3
  10. Joe grom

    These are great cars! That’s how I lost all my hair driving my Nova drop top! We built this one of none 65 SS vert out of a 62, we love cruising!

    We have been selling new & used parts for these cars for 38 years, check us out.

    gmclassics.com

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  11. Dave

    Fun little cars. My Uncle gave my son a ’62 convertible a few years ago. We pulled it out of a barn with four flat tires. Got them to take some air, loaded it up, and gave it a wash. Still runs and drives.

  12. Larry

    I have just lowered the price on this car from $4500 down to $3500. Delivery is available.

  13. Larry

    I can’t believe that no one has purchased this car for $3500 as yet. Being a first year 1962 Nova Convertible, I would think it would be gone by now. The only metal that needs to be replaced is the front and rear floor pans. This car would be beautiful and outstanding after being restored. You all are missing the boat on this one. I don’t know of any other 62 Nova Convertible that are being offered for sale right now, especially at this low price

  14. Dave at OldSchool Restorations Milt Member

    here’s a pretty nicely done Nova currently up for bid

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/183821318623?ul_noapp=true

  15. Larry

    Yes, its nice, but it is not totally original like the one that I am offering.

  16. Larry

    Final reduction on price: $2500

  17. Charles Mark

    Is the car still available ?

  18. Larry

    No, it has been sold. To check out other classic cars that I have for sale, go to http://collectorcars.fotki.com

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