My love started when I was walking downtown where I lived (small town in WI) in 1964 or 65. Our town was a big hub of car guys that would come into town and do what we called scooping the loop. We had a lot of actual race car guys right in our town that would also meet in town and caravan out to Union Grove Great Lakes Dragaway about 18 miles away. It was not unusual to see 8-9 cars on trailers and then 10-20 cars all driving to the strip, all together.
That night I was downtown and I noticed a dark blue '57 Chevy Gasser and what I remember was a Willy's open top Jeep type Gasser. It looked alot like a VW Thing but with a Jeep front end. The '57 had the firewall cut way back until the front of the motor was even with the old firewall location. Moderately high front axle but I don't remember if it was a tube axle or a front beam axle like a '55-59 chevy pick up front axle. The '57 was running a chrysler (Dodge, Plymouth) big block and push button auto trans. Don't know if it was a 440 or 426 wedge or could have even been a short deck type 383 etc. But definitely a Mopar. Could not see the engine in the Willy's but whatever it was it was also set back into the firewall and was a push button auto trans. So I assume a mopar motor. Probably has a lot to do with why I am obsessed with engine set back in my cars. I think both cars were either built by the same builder or the guys may have been best car buddies or even family since both cars were built very similar. Both had the same sheet metal work to move the engine back and both had the gas pedals located on the passenger side so the driver had to straddle the trans tunnel with their right legs to work the gas. They were in the local bowling alley and I never got to hear them running when they left. Never saw them again. We lived about 18 miles southwest of Milwaukee WI so they were probably from there.
Lets hear all of your stories or reasons for loving Gassers. I like hearing about how people got involved in these decisions.