Our teenage years often set the tone for who we will become. It is in these years that we form our moral fiber, as well as our taste in cars. Some guys dream of the exotic sports cars, others fancy themselves owning a Hot Rod, leaving the rest of us to live our automotive lives as close to the ground as possible. Clark Miller is one of us, and he spent many afternoons perusing Lowrider Magazine and dreaming of one day owning his own Lowrider. It was in these same teenage years that he would also be introduced to the lifestyle itself, thanks to a few of his buddies at the time who were into building Lowriders. One of the guys had a stock ’64 Impala with hubcaps, but it also had hydraulics, making it the first set up he’d ever seen that wasn’t in a magazine. He was captivated. “Ever since then I was hooked,” says Clark, still giddy from the memory. The following year, Clark built a 1975 Buick LeSabre Convertible. “I had that for a few years, sold it and ended up buying a ’64 drop top. I installed hydraulics on the drop and have been around the scene ever since,” explains Clark.
Life has its own twists and turns just like the Boulevards we like to ride on, and about four years ago, Clark found himself living in Las Vegas, Nevada. “I was living in Vegas while I attended school to be a crane operator,” he explains. The area’s dry climate makes it the ideal region in which to search for classic cars, and that search took him to the nearby Grand Canyon State in pursuit of his dream car; a 1958 Chevrolet Impala Convertible. He made the trip to Arizona to check the car out and found it to be in less than ideal shape. “It was a real rust bucket but since it was my dream car, I bought it anyways,” Clark says sheepishly. The deal he worked out with the previous owner included the provision that the previous owner would do a serious amount of metal work on the car. The agreement sounded good, but the previous owner never lived up to his promise.“Dude ended up hosing me on it and never finished it,” Clark says angrily. Thanks to the broken promise, Clark was left with no budget to finish the Chevy and was forced to sell it; a situation he never thought he’d end up facing. All dark clouds have a silver lining, and one of his prospective buyers was Bert from the Chevy Shop, who personally called Clark interested in acquiring his prized Chevy. “Bert was really interested in the car, so we started talking and came up with a price,” says Clark. Bert was a man of many Chevy’s and it gave Clark an idea. “He had this clean ’62 Impala Convertible, and I asked him if we could work something out like an exchange.” In no time, Bert and Clark worked out a deal to trade the ’58 for the frame-off ‘62.
Clark now had an amazing ride that was in great shape and he began doing some minor customizations to the Chevy. “I wanted to chrome this, then that, and it just got out of hand,” laughs Clark, who ended up investing a lot more into the build than he had originally planned. “The whole build process took about a year and a half.” During that time, Clark and Bert ended up becoming really good friends, and they still are to this day.
Clark has been a proud member of Uso car club for a year and a half but has known the Lima, OH., chapter of Uso for at least eight years. “I’ve known those guys for a long time from going to shows, but I never thought I would have a car nice enough to join [them],” says Clark. The Detroit chapter of Uso is actually closer to Clark, but he decided to join that chapter in order to be able to represent Ohio. “I drive three hours to Lima for my club meeting,” he says with pride. Of course, three hours feels like three minutes when you’re behind the wheel of a clean ’62 like this one! Clark would like to thank Bert at the Chevy Shop for helping to make this dream ’62 a reality and sends his regards and gratitude to his Uso Car Club family for always supporting him.
Tech Specs “Blue Collar”
Owner: Clark Miller
Vehicle: 1962 Impala Convertible
City/State: Eastlake, OH
Engine: The Chevy Shop built the stock 327 engine, which features chrome as far as the eye can see.
Body/Paint: Clark had Bert and his crew at the Chevy Shop layer a Silver Blue Metallic paint on his ’62 Impala, achieving a classic look.
Interior: Dave’s Upholstery stitched together the stock pattern interior on the convertible.
Sound System: Ensuring his stock look, Clark installed the CD/MP3 player in the glove box and hid the Diamond speakers in order to preserve the timeless feel of the Impala.
Wheels: Chrome 13-inch.