Sanderson Header Selection Tips for Passenger Car Applications
Choosing the correct header set for 1955-57 Chevrolet passenger cars requires an understanding of every possible component or combination of components that can affect header installation compatibility.
Header choice is determined by more than the engine installed within these vehicles. While specific engine issues can affect availability of a compatible header, it is the combination of the engine choice and other components that determine header compatibility. For example, here are a few items to consider:
- Engine location (stock, forward, or setback); and mount style (front/rear, side; plus, are the rear horns removed?).
- Steering type (standard, power, 605, aftermarket CPP 500-series, or rack and pinion)
- Steering column (stock or aftermarket)
- Stock or aftermarket front clip
- Transmission type, and if manual, does the vehicle use a factory style Z-bar or hydraulic clutch setup?
- Then, if using a small block Chevrolet engine, what cylinder heads are on the application and are they straight or angle plug?
To help reduce some of the confusion and assist in selecting the correct header set, here is a list of component combinations and the corresponding Sanderson Header part numbers for 1955-57 (tri-fve) passenger car applications. Review each engine section to see the available headers, but also the notes on what ensures compatibility.
On small block Chevy tri-five applications, it is important to verify compatibility of all critical components.
|Header Part #||Steering Compatibility||Cylinder Heads||Transmission|
|CC11||Flaming River R&P||Straight Plug3||All|
|US56||Unisteer R&P||Straight Plug3||Automatic|
* Engine location dependent
1 Full length header
2 Fenderwell design
3 Must specify if Vortec-style spark plug spacing
4 Only compatible with GM-style angle plug heads (Not Edelbrock Victor Jr, etc.)
5 NOT compatible with Vortec-style heads
6 Must use hydraulic clutch activation
The #1 issue on big block Tri-Five applications is simply Location-Location-Location! If the engine is the proper location, headers fit. If the header interferes with anything, relocate the engine into the proper location. The second issue relates to the combination of components.
|Header Part #||Steering||Transmission||Mounts|
R&P (aftermarket chassis)
1 Proper engine location imperative to prevent driver side steering box and passenger side idler arm interference
2 Removal of stock rear mount horns required
3 Proper engine location imperative to provide steering box clearance
4 Requires use of Danchuck or Classic Mounts engine mount kit
5 Manual transmission applications require hydraulic clutch setup
6 The BB57 fits applications with the engine moved forward for HEI distributor clearance at the firewall.