February / March, 2016

1957 Belair 2 Dr. Hardtop.
Owners:  Rex and Sara Bendure
Date of purchase:  11/7/1981
Projected Completion: March, 2017

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One of the Tampa Bay Classic Chevy Club’s newer members, Rex and Sara Bendure joined the club a year ago with their Belair under-going a frame-off restoration by Steve Hines of Shines Customs in Dandridge, TN.

The car was originally purchased by Sara from a towing company’s boneyard in Maple Heights, Ohio for $650, with the vision of a family project involving both of their sons.  It was last registered in Ohio in 1973.  It was original with a 283, Powerglide, and otherwise complete except for intake manifold, carburetor, and front seat.  It also came with a significant amount of rust honestly earned from 16 northeast Ohio winters with the traditional salt seasoning of the roads common for that area.

All good intentions aside, the most work completed was dis-assembly.  It came to Florida when Rex had a job transfer in 1986.  The restoration started, stalled, and that cycle repeated several times including a five year $5K stop at a body shop that resulted in little more than rocker panel replacement and some reinforcement of floor spot welds.  With retirement looming for Rex, the family told him to fix it, drive it, and enjoy it after learning of Shines Customs and the work Steve does.  As Steve only works on one car at a time, the Belair had to wait its turn which came in November 2015, when it was reassembled for transport and delivered to Shines Customs.

April / May, 2016 – Fabrication and body work continued into May when some cool parts begin to show up.

March / April, 2016 – Some fine craftsmanship on the part of Steve Hines replacing the rear pan and sheet metal below the rear tail lights.  He told Rex that he really enjoys this type of work, sometimes….

Rex / Sara Bendure

’57 Belair 2DR

January, 2016 – Sheet metal replacement

May, 2016 – Work progressed in May with modification of the inner fenders, epoxy, and priming for the doors, hood, and trunk lid as well as mounting the LS3.


June, 2016 – Power train installation. Radiator cover fabrication. Frame repair and boxing.


2828 Wiregrass Rd. Lakeland, Fl. 33810

December, 2015 – Teardown, sandblast and reconstruction.