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1965 Corvette Art Prints

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Laser-Etched Illustrated Corvette Series-II No. 167
1965 396 Corvette The First Big-Block Vette

11x17 Laser-Etched Print - $49.95 + $8.00 S&H



Illustrated Corvette Series No. 167
1965 396 Corvette
"The First Big-Block Vette"
To read the story, CLICK HERE.

Illustrated Corvette Series-II No. 167
1965 396 Corvette The First Big-Block Vette
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Illustrated Corvette Series No. 24
1965 Corvette
To read the story, CLICK HERE.

lllustrated Corvette Series No. 25
1965 396 Corvette
To read the story, CLICK HERE.
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Illustrated Corvette Series-II No. 24
1965 Corvette

lllustrated Corvette Series-II No. 25
1965 396 Corvette
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Illustrated Corvette Series-II No. 24
1965 Corvette

lllustrated Corvette Series-II No. 25
1965 396 Corvette
11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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lIlustrated Corvette Series No. 26
1965 Mako Shark II Show Car Corvette
To read the story, CLICK HERE.

1965 395 Corvette Coupe Profile
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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1963 - 1965 L84
Fuel Injected 327 Engine / ENG-2

1965 L78 396 Big-Block Engine
ENG-3
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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1963 - 1965 L84
Fuel Injected 327 Engine LZ-ENG-2

1965 L78 396 Big-Block Engine
LZ-ENG-3
11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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Here's the story:
lllustrated Corvette Series No. 167 - 1965 396 Corvette - "The First Big-Block Vette"

Were it not for NASCAR Chevys trailing behind nearly everyone in the early ‘60s, there may never have been a big-block Corvette. Fuelie Corvettes were doing very sell in SCCA sports car racing, but the NASCAR Chevys where in trouble. While GM was officially not racing in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s, Duntov and a few other Chevy engineers kept select Chevy racers supplied heavy-duty specialty parts for field testing. Engineers tried to help with the Z11 Impala option that made a 427 out of the 409 truck motor. The car performed well as a drag racer, but wasn’t a competitive stock car racer.

In the Summer of ‘62, Chevy engineer Dick Keinath was tasked to design the next generation big-block Chevy engine. Since the 348/409 was called the Mark I, the new engine was named, Mark II. The new block was based on the thick bottom end design of the 348/409 for low end strength, and new free-breathing heads.

Over in the Corvette camp, Duntov was making jaws drop at the GM test track with his CERV I and in June got approval from Chevy general manager, Bunkie Knudsen for the CERV II. A few days later, GM’s president, Frederick Donner ordered the project stopped. Days later, Knudsen approving Duntov’s Grand Sport proposal. By the end of the year, Donner had had it! On January 21, 1963, lightning bolts fell from upon high. “Thou shall not race GM cars!” Thus ended Chevrolet’s direct involvement with the racing.

Meanwhile, the Mark II was ready for some NASCAR field testing, so Smokey Yunick, the perfect back-door privateer racer, was called upon. With Johnny Rutherford at the wheel of Yunick’s 427 ‘63 Impala, the car set the fastest speed of the month and a world’s record for a closed-course at a then-blistering 165.183-MPH! Yunick guestimated that the Mark II was pulling at least 500-HP and everyone could tell that was no ordinary Chevy and Also, Duntov loaned a Mark II prototype to Micket Thompson to install into a ;63 Z06 for some road racing field testing. The legend of the “Chevy Mystery Motor” was born

Aware of the GM ban on racing, the press was left to speculate the fate of the Mystery Motor. The following March at a press conference, Donner was asked about that fast Chevy that was raced at Daytona the month before. Donner replied that he didn’t know anything about it. Seriously embarrassed, Donner was determined to forbid GM’s direct involvement in racing.

But all was not lost. In early ‘64 Zora Duntov was charged to form a team of engineers to make the Mark II into a production engine. Duntov and his Corvette team had worked very hard with the new Sting Ray to achieve a 50/50 weight balance, so adding front end weight was against his design sense. But the team got seriously motivated when it was learned that Carroll Shelby was putting the big 427 Ford NASCAR engine into his Cobras.

The word, “simple” describes the Mark IV engine. GM engineer, “Boss” Kettering’s slogan was, “Parts left out cost nothing and cause few service problems.” The team made sure that there was plenty of extra meat for bore enlarging. Cast in high-chromiun content iron, the completed engine weighed 680-pounds. The genius of the design is in its build-in strength and the head design. The modified wedge combustion chamber, with a large quench area for cooling, allowed the intake and exhaust valves to be angled towards their ports, providing vastly improved breathing and increased volume of fuel mixture for each cylinder. The heavy bottom end with 4-bolt main bearing caps keep the crankshaft alive. A single Holley four-barrel carb sat atop of an aluminum intake manifold and an open-element air filter. Solid-lifters, forged pistons, free-flow cast-iron exhaust manifolds, a transistorized ignition, and a 17-inch diameter viscous-drive fan finished off the package. The new 396 L78 was underrated at 425-HP and 415-ft/lbs of torque, the real numbers were closer to 450-HP, nearly 100 more than the L84 Fuelie.

Stuffing the new big-block into the Sting Ray required the front frame cross-member to be modified for extra clearance and a special hood dome with air vents for air cleaner clearance. To handle the extra 200-pounds of front end weight, stiffer front springs were used with the standard Corvette front shocks, the stabilized bar was increased to 1-9/16-inches diameter, and the radiator was 2-inches wider. All three drive shafts were made from stronger SAE 4240 steel with shot-peened universal joints.

The overall package was spectacular when released in January ‘65. With the optional side-exhausts, great-looking domed hood, and “Turbo Jet 396” badge of the front fenders, the new big-block Corvette had a commanding appearance and sound. But best of all was the price. Thanks to making the new engine available in all Chevy cars (except for the Corvair), the bean counters were able to keep the L78 price to just $292. The L84 Fuelie cost $538, an expensive way to buy 50 less horsepower. A loaded 396 Coupe with the optional F40 suspension, M20 four-speed transmission, side-exhausts, leather seats, and various creature comforts cost close to $6,500. Of the 23,564 Corvettes built in ‘65, only 2,157 were L79 optioned.

Over the next three years, the L78 evolved in to the L72 427, the L71 427/435, with the L88 reaching legend status. It’s ironic that an engine first conceived as a solution for Chevy NASCAR racers, never saw success in that arena. Instead, big-block Chevys became a force to be reckoned with in drag racing, Can-Am, and SCCA racing. The powerplant that Mr. Duntov wasn’t initially happy about, put more Corvette racers in the winner’s circle than Zora ever dreamed. - KST


Here's the story:
lllustrated Corvette Series No. 24 - 1965 Corvette - "Balance vs Raw Power"

Not only was the 1965 Sting Ray the middle of the second generation Corvette, but it was the end of the line for the Rochester Fuel Injection option and the beginning of a 10-year run of the Mark IV big-block. Raw power would never be this inexpensive.

Duntov's mission for the Corvette customers was to give them the option of a mild-mannered car or a rip-snorking, semi-racing machine. Since 1957, the Fuel Injection option was the hot setup for maximum performance. By combining the right parts with the small block engine, the Corvette could be a formidable sports car. However, living with the Fuelie wasn't always easy. Many owners actually replaced the Rochester setup in favor of a four-barrel! 1965 was unique because both the Fuel Injection setup and the 396 big block were available. Unfortunately for the Fuelie, cubic inches were cheaper than sophistication. The L-84 Fuel Injection option cost $538, while the L78 396 big block cost only $292. Plus, the 396 cranked out 50 more horses! The question was light weight and nimble, or brute power.

The other big performance leap was standard, four-wheel disc brakes. Corvette's drum brakes had been a sore spot for years. In the '50s and '60s, only exotic European sports cars had disc brakes. The big, 11.75-inch rotors and four-piston calipers were almost too much. Braking was like no other car in America. A very noisy option in 1965 was the "off-road" side pipes. The $37.70 option sounded great on 2,468 cars.

The body received minor changes. Vertical vents on the front fenders were functional and the fake hood vents were removed. The horizontal grille bars were now black. The interior had new seats, door panels, and black, flat-face gauges. Base price of the 1965 Corvette was $4,321, and total production was 23,562 units.

The 1965 Corvette had more options than ever and Chevrolet was selling every Corvette it could make. With the release of the Mark IV 396, Corvettes were just entering into a new level of performance. - K. Scott Teeters


Here's the story:
Illustrated Corvette Series No. 25 - 1965 396 Corvette - "Simply Raw Power!"

In the mid 1950s, Detroit was hot with racing fever and NASCAR racing was uniquely "American." Ford and Chrysler completely disregarded the AMA ban of factory supported racing. GM, on the other hand, "officially" observed the ban and was "not in racing."

The 1962 NASCAR "427 Mystery Motor" was a 500 plus horsepower experimental engine design that would make its way into the Corvette by 1965. Zora Arkus-Duntov was not all together happy with this idea. Duntov's vision for the Corvette was for it to be a balanced sports car. Adding 150 pounds to the front of the car seemed like a bad move to him. The upside was gobs of cheap, raw power. The new "big-block" was a genuine stump puller! Zora didn't like it, but Corvette customers sure did.

The Mark IV 396 Corvette hit the streets in April of 1965, and no one was ready for the personality change. The high-revving big- block Sting Ray was now a street monster!

Officially known as the L78, the new 396 engine cranked out 425 horsepower at 6400 rpm with 415 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm. Best of all, the L78 option was only $292.70, compared to $538 for the Fuel Injected 327. The larger engine required extra hood clearance, so a beautiful hood dome was designed with functional cooling vents.

Everything was heavy-duty with the 396; the K66 ignition, a larger fan and radiator, a close-ratio M20 four-speed gearbox, and the G81 Positraction differential were all mandatory. Stiffer springs and a larger stabilizer bar held up the front end, while beefed up U-joints kept the half-shafts together. With the new optional side pipes, the 396 sounded like a roaring bear.

Sales were off for 1965, with 8,186 units sold compared to 8,304 in 1964. But 2157 (26.3 percent) of the cars were ordered with the 396. Corvette lovers obviously liked the big block. The 396 would grow to a 427 in 1966 and a 454 in 1970-1/2. Brute force was taking over! Corvette. - K. Scott Teeters


Here's the story:
lIlustrated Corvette Series No. 26 - 1965 Mako Shark II - "Simply Stunning"

Bill Mitchell and Larry Shinoda scored big in the automotive world with the 1965 Mako Shark II Show Car. It was a total original, nothing was like it, and it just screamed, CORVETTE !

Bill Mitchell started working on the next generation Corvette the day production on the 1963 Corvette started. He knew that things change quickly in automotive styling , so it was critical that he go way outside the envelope. The first step was to build a functional, single seat, open-wheeled car that would push everything to the extreme. The "X-15", named after the experimental U.S. Air Force jet, was never shown to the public and was later sent to the crusher.

Shinoda and crew had to make a real car now. The styling elements of the hood bulge and the side exhausts were taken directly from the X-15 exercise. Back tracking from the extreme, Mitchell set the guidelines.

He wanted the following; "a narrow, slim, center section and coupe body, a tapered tail, an all-of-a-piece blending of the upper and lower portions of the body through the center (avoiding the look of a roof added to a body), and prominent wheels with their protective fenders distinctly separate from the main body, yet grafted organically to it."

The full-size mock-up just blew everyone away. Built on a production Corvette chassis, the Mako Shark also had a mocked- up interior.

The Mako Shark II had an interesting blend of soft curves and sharp break-lines. The tucked in center section, called the "coke-bottle" gave the center of the car a taut, trim look, while the curved fender lines made the car look like it had been working- out. The low, pointed nose made a bold statement while the tapered and pointed tail gave the car a high-speed, wind-swept look.

Since the Mako Shark II was a show-car, it had plenty of gimmicks and was overdone here and there. Some of the grille vents and other details were a little fussy. However, compared with other cars in 1965, the Mako Shark was a vision of the future.

When the car was shown at the New York International Auto Show in April 1965, the press and the public went wild. It was called beautiful, embellished, convoluted, aerodynamic, perfect, and many other things. And this was only the mock-up. On October 5, 1965 the fully functional Mako Shark II arrived. Oh WOW! - K. Scott Teeters


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