By Animal Jim Feurer
Anyone recall the cool 1959 instrumental piece called "The Hunch"? It was written and performed by the Bobby Peterson Quintet. My girlfriend back then and I loved that music. It so happens there was a black 1960 Ford from Streator, Illinois, named after that piece.
Painting the name of your car was vogue for cool street cars back in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s (at least in my neck of the woods). The name was usually painted in contrasting two inch letters, sometimes with a character, on the rear quarter panels or front fenders. That 1960 black Ford with the name "The Hunch” painted on it became kind of a semi legend around the LaSalle, Peru, Ottawa, Streator and surrounding area.
At the time I was 19, a year out of LaSalle-Peru high school, class of ‘59. I was working two part time jobs and trying to attend LPO Junior College in LaSalle, Illinois.
Black '56 Chevy
My ride back then was a hot black ’56 Chevy 210 two door sedan. It came stock with a Corvette engine and two four barrel carbs. The top of the engine looked original except for the two 6 inch chrome air filters instead of the factory huge heavy restrictive oil bath air cleaner. The short block had been changed from a 265 ci to a 283 punched to a 301 ci, with Jahns forged 12 to 1 compression ratio pistons. The crank assembly was precision balanced by Vachons in Peoria, Illinois. The valves were opened and closed with an Isky solid lifter cam and valve train. The exhaust was exited by Headman headers (open when racing); trans was three on the tree and a 3.90 rear end.
What my engine in my '56 Chevy looked like
I thought I was hot stuff, having handily beat most contenders out on the County Line Road. That is until I tangled with The HUNCH!
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