Let me introduce you to Raquel – wait ‘till you see her Topless!

In 1973 I was a sophomore at La Jolla High School and Chevrolet released what has become to be known as a Gen II Chevy K5 Blazer. At the same time another La Jolla High School alum was becoming known as one of America’s greatest Sex Symbols. Raquel Welch, called by Playboy Magazine the "Most Desired Woman" of the '70s was on the minds if not walls of all boys my age. But, I also had my eye on the 1973 Blazer a friend had just purchased.

Jo Raquel Tejada was always a looker:

But she did not become the Raquel Welsh that we all wanted until she had some performance upgrades:
After more than ten years of planning, collecting and saving up, I've started to build my Raquel.

This is what she looked like when I first brought her home more than eight years ago:
My Raquel is 1973 Chevrolet K5 Blazer. For the last five or more years, she has just been a bare frame stored in various places around San Diego, waiting for me to start the Plastic Surgery to turn her into the "Rockhell" that she wants to be.

I've been planning this build for years and have a very clear vision of what she will be when finished. Instead of telling you what the plan is, I'll let you see the progress and the directions we take as we take them.

I'm working with Glen Straightiff of Complete Fabrication in El Cajon. Glen is doing most of the actual fabrication and working with me to get Raquel in the dirt.

I officially started the build on my Birthday, March 26th, when I started building the fixture of the front suspension; which consists of a Ford Dana 50 Twin Traction Beam.

I welded two steel wheels to square tubing to set the desired track width of 90 inches and began building the equal length (46" center of Ball Joint line to pivot center) Traction Beams. If you know anything about TTB you know that means we had to move the right beams pivot point from behind to in front of the left beam. We were able to completely build the beams on the fixture before transferring them to the frame.


We stripped the '73 frame of all unwanted spring hangers and other brackets, leaving just a bare frame. We took it over to Powder 1 in El Cajon where Chris and crew sand blasted it down to bare metal, then lightly painted it Flat Black to keep it from rusting.
That is Chris Raffo (retroblazer) visiting for the day and lending a hand in stripping the frame.


Here are some more pictures that might be of interest:


We have spent another 60 hours on Raquel and the beams and radius arms are finish welded and plated thanks to my un-named friend's tig welding skills. Motor mounts, cross-members, pivot brackets, and crossover steering are all complete and cycle very cleanly. We are very happy with the results. Glen and I both feel that this was probably 30% of the total build. There is over 150 hours in getting to this point. I'll post more pictures later.

The next step is to cut the frame in half and lengthen it 12 inches.

We will have the front half of the project at the FiberwerX Open House and DRIVE Drawing Party this Saturday so drop by and check it out and say hi.


Well-Known Member
Thanks for the detailed photos. It looks like your on your way to having a sweet ride shortly. What condition is the body in? Any special plans for it?


Well-Known Member
Awesome!! When's the last time an equal length TTB rolled out of a shop....under a Blazer to boot. Sweet!! I'll be watching this close. Raffo put you up to that?

JD Durfey

Well-Known Member
I have a 91 Ford F-150 TTB that I bought at an auction last year that someday I am going to build into a pre-runner/chase truck. I hope it doesn't take me 8 years to get started. Are you going to 4 link the rear?


Well-Known Member
Well done, boys. WELL DONE!!!


Well-Known Member
Great job Ramsey....when its all done you gota paint it classic Ramsey colors..

Random Thoughts Racing

Well-Known Member
That is Chris Raffo (retroblazer) visiting for the day and lending a hand in stripping the frame.
Chris looks happier than a pig in *%^$ working on the new chevy. Looks like a good project. Will this have one of the ginormous crate motors that Glen likes?


Well-Known Member
Oh hell, Dirty hooker travel supersized!

Ramsey, you are My hero.

So, got the steering figured out yet? The beams are the easy part.......

harleys dad

Well-Known Member
Projects like this are always cool and exiting, dont know the slightest bit about this kind of stuff, but looks good Ramsey.


Well-Known Member
This will be a really cool build, excited to see future progress, keep up the excellent work!