Almost fifty members and friends gathered at the Drouin Golf Club for our July meeting. Those who chose to book in for a meal enjoyed a hearty entrée and main course whilst the regular General Meeting business and discussion of past and coming events was dispensed with. Several new members were introduced this month and following the second course, Tony Pisa was invited to tell us about his 1964 EH Holden which took pride of place on display in the dining room.
This car was originally purchased from a dealer down Warrnambool way, where it was delivered with the 149ci engine and three-on-the-tree transmission. The owners must have moved to West Gippsland, because the car became a regular customer at Tony’s workshop where he expressed a desire to own the car, if it ever came up for sale. It was, however, through an unfortunate accident about six years ago where the owner damaged the car, that Tony took possession.
Since then it’s undergone a full ground-up rebuild. A freshly-built 179ci XU-1 motor (built 16 years ago, but never used) was taken from another project car and given a new water pump and sundry other items before being fitted to the EH. The engine runs a straight-cut gear drive cam, roller rockers, triple Strombergs and tuned-length extractors. Tony has also managed to install an air-conditioning compressor and a small alternator in the space where the standard alternator usually fits. The brakes have been upgraded to VR Commodore units front and rear, together with a narrowed Commodore rear axle, diff unit and wheels.
The damaged bodywork was replaced, as were the rusted sections of sheetmetal which were found in all the usual areas. Most of the brightwork was also replaced, however, the grill is still original. The interior was completely re-upholstered and modified to allow for the air-conditioning unit which is controlled through switches housed in what is usually an after-market gauge pod on top of the dashboard. The car was resprayed in the original colours of Barwon Blue and Fowler Ivory and it looks a treat.
The EH has been back on road for about two and a half years now. Tony says that it’s a pleasure to drive, especially on hot days when you can shut the windows and turn the air on, but it does cruise very well with the Commodore gearing and wheels. It’s a very impressive car and the build quality is very high. We thank Tony for bringing the car along this month and for telling us something of its history.