1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :( - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
Dan
 
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1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

I have recently purchased a 1968 chevy camaro - The problem is I dont know what type of camaro it is - and I was wondering if anyone could help me out.
The car has about a 7 year old restoration, and when they restored it, Im thinking they mixed and matched RS parts with SS parts.
here is my issue
The car has RS emblem on the Grill the fenders and the gas cap, it has the hidden headlights just like the original chevy camaro RS package boasts...
The question comes when you look at the engine and the hood...
The hood has the two raised "fake" air vents, with the silver mesh which from my understanding were only on the SS models - also on the fender between the bumper and the bumblebee strip it has emblems stating that the engine is a 350. From my understanding the RS package didn't have a 350 V8 option available in 1968.
But were the hidden headlighs available with the SS package?

I know the emblems on a vehicle can be put on rather easily - and the true identity of a vehicle can be hidden, i dont think someone did this maliciously, i think it was just a restoration gone haywire, or someone putting emblems on who didn't have a clue....

I am trying to figure out if I should remove the RS ones and put SS ones, or keep the RS and change out the hood and remove the 350 emblems, everywhere i have looked and researched the RS in 1968 was only available in a 327 v8 but maybe I am wrong, but I would like to have this cleared up by someone with a little more knowledge then me.

The car looks great either way, its an awesome car and is in mint condition, but I am getting ready to start showing it, and I dont want to be looked at like im crazy if i have the wrong emblems on the vehicle, you know?

The only reason I want to change anything is to make the vehicle as original as possible, when the body restoration was done, the engine was overhauled too, so its not original and is definitely a 350, I know I will never get points for being all original but, I dont want to get deducted for having an unoriginal body also -

Then again, I could be completely mistaken with all of my assumptions, but I could sure use a hand bringing this to a conclusion.

Thanks in advance for any help
-Tormented camaro owner
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 05:15 PM
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Dan
 
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Keep in mind they also had RS/SS (both options) available; but without the original engine it makes it harder to tell-- what's in it for a rear end? If it has a 12 bolt and it's the original, it is likely that the 350 emblems are correct (SS), although the grill emblems should be SS as well; Also, to help validate the RS- are the backup lights located below the rear bumper? Do you have wide stainless trim at the tops of the doors? These are '68 RS clues. -Dan

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 05:20 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Hey Tormented - First Welcome to TC... Next relax You are a 1st gen Camaro owner so you have no reason to be freaking out over the small stuff... Your '68 is the hardest of all the 1st gens to validate and unless you have paper or can match the engine trans and rear-end to the car you will never be able to prove what the car really is.

Basically there are 3 camaros...

1> plane jane
2> SS
3> Z/28

Each of this and all the possible engine combos can be equipped with the Rally Sport option. That gives you...

4> RS
5> RS SS
6> RS Z/28

I won't breakdown all the badging for the 6 Camaros but you can find out everything you need from this site, start on our front page and then go through the forums. Also check out www.camaros.org (CRG for short), the site is dedicated to dispelling mis-nomers that have been propagated over the years...

I wouldn't take the stance that your cars restoration went bad. I'm sure the previous owner just did what he liked... After you have figured out if your engine and trans belong with the car (vin is stamped on each) or not then you can decide what to do if you are trying to make the car as close to factory as possible. If not pick the path you like best and head down it. If money is an issue pick the path easiest on your wallet...

Before you get too involved in all this research go take some digital pic's to show the folks here and then sit down with a few and get busy checking things out...

...Dennis
www.camaroslimited.com

"Don't take life so serious, you won't get out alive..."
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 06:00 PM
 
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

you will have to check the vin numbers and decode them also you will need to check the motor stamp for number id.this is the only sure way of identfying ss, rs, z28
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 06:33 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

The RS is basically a trim option(Hidden headlights,etc..) The SS is a performance option ( 350 motor,12 bolt rear end, multi leaf rear springs) . Base Cars could be ordered with either or both options..becoming either an Rs,SS or RS/SS
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 06:56 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Like they all said, RS is a trim option available on any Camaro.

On a base car, RS would include the RS Emblems. On an SS, the SS emblems would be used instead.

Forget decoding the vin, all it would tell you on a 68 is if it were a V8 car (third digit=4) or a vert (4th digit=6)

My gut feeling is that it was a base RS, and someone added the SS hood and 350 emblems. It would seem odd to replace SS emblems with RS emblems. A properly dated 12 bolt would change that opinion tho.

Welcome to TC!!!

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 06, 09:34 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

What everybody else said! But keep in mind that the early '68 SS small-block car hood louvers didn't have the "mesh" louvers--they were flat and finned like a '67. The BB cars had the mesh louvers. And the SS badging always overrode the RS trim, 350 or big-block. So if your car is an SS, the RS gas cap isn't right. The key is the 12-bolt and multileaf springs--that pretty much nails an SS car, for very few 327 cars had those. Also, the SS emblems on the fenders always overrode the RS emblems. I'd say you have an RS car if it has a 10-bolt. Either way, welcome to the club! Drive that sucker and enjoy it.

"If it breaks, fix it. If you can't fix it, have a beer and be glad it didn't kill you."
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 06, 10:15 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

First of all thanks for all the help and the welcomes, its good to finally find a website that has what I need to figure this out, Im not that old (still under 25) so I am new to all of this.

Here is an update to all of the things you said:

#1 the motor was overhauled during restoration, my numbers guy told me as far as he can tell so far, the engine looks like it may have been rebuilt using the block from a chevy truck with a 350. Like i said, its not the original engine so using that to decide what it is will not help.

#2 Its sounds to me like the only identifying feature I have an option is, is with the rear end... from what you guys are telling me, here is what I can come up with...

If i have a 12 bolt rear end its a SS with a Rallysport trimpackage. Which would make sense to have the hood ornaments, and the 350 emblems.

If it is a 10 bolt rear, then it was a plain jane Camaro upgraded with a RS trim package, and then had a 350 added to it during the restoration, explaining the 350 emblems.

So here is what I have decided, I am going to go check the rear end, and if its 12 bolt, I want to make sure everyone knows my camaro is an ss/rs so which emblems should I replace?

The car as of currently:
RS emblem on front grill
Rally Sport Emblem written out on fenders
RS emblem on gascap
350 emblems on the front end quarter panels

If its a 12 bolt rear end, that means its an SS/RS if I am understanding correctly. So which of those emblems should remain RS? and which should be changed to SS?

Also - I forgot to mention, the reason I am trying to figure all of this out, is because the body is in amazing condition, and I am currently doing another overhaul of the engine - I have decided I am going to stay with a smallblock 350 probably a crate motor from GM. If I do so, that means I would have the Motor and hood ornaments of a SS, if i find out that my car is mean't to be a 327 rally sport because the rear end is only 10 bolt, I can change the rear end to a 12 bolt, and buy the SS emblems, and that would put me as close as possible to a original factory 68 SS/RS?

And if thats the case, did the original SS/RS from the factory have RS emblems on them anywhere or does the SS emblem always take precedence over the RS?


any answers would be appreciated, I am going to go check my rear end now, and take some pictures of the vehicle to show you guys what I mean...

As far as other items include - i know some some of these things determine the cars situation also -

Its a 4 speed manual with a hurst shifter, and a muncie transmission box (I was under the understanding that this was a SS factory setup, maybe Im wrong)

***From decoding the VIN, all I can tell is that it was a V8 car, but that still doesn't solve my question, 327 or 350 *** Damn, I wish I knew what it came with -

Thanks
-Dan

Last edited by Insomniak2; Dec 15th, 06 at 10:29 AM. Reason: add items
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 06, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
Dan
 
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Also the back up lights are below the rear bumper and I do have the chrome window fittings you asked about, around the windows.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 06, 10:58 AM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

68's are tough. Without the original drivetrain and some documentation (build sheet or protecto-plate), it is near impossible to "prove" how the car left the factory.

You only stated that you want it to be "original" in your first post. Your last post then asked "if I put a 12 bolt in would it be as close as possible to an SS"

Different people think different things as far as "cloning", or making a car appear to be something other than how it left the factory, and there are certainly many different levels of doing so. There are COPO clones owned by members of this site that started life as six cylinder coupes and are now "correct copo clones" including all correct NOS or used matching casting number and date code componants all acquired at an unbelievable cost.

Then there are those like me who like the look of an SS, so the outside of my car looks like an SS. (check my website for correct 68 SS emblems, they are the same for SS/RS)

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 06, 11:46 AM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

When you got an RS/SS, the SS badges were used. The "rally-sport" fender script has pin locations totally different than the SS badge, so it is not easy to change one for the other.

The engine displacement badge is a different story. For 68, the pins are in the same place from the 302 (for Z/28) to the 396, and they all interchange. So it's easy to put 350 emblems on a car that had 327 emblems.

Cars that got the SS hood at the factory had different hood springs (28 coils vs. 26). A lot of folks don't change the springs, so you could check that too.

My guess is that, if it a real RS (stamped holes for the reverse lights and headlight vacuum lines to switch), a previous owner threw an SS domed hood and 350 emblems on it.

If the paint is good and you like the look of the hood, I'd leave it as is. If you're painting soon or don't mind trying to match the paint, you could put a flat hood back on it to be "correct." As for putting the 327 badges back on, you'll get into chasing your tail (but, it has a 350 now).

Personally, if it looks good I'd leave it alone (that's about what the PO did to the 68 I had). I'd never fill the "rally-sport" script holes on the fenders to put SS ones on.

Eric
69 'vert project big block/TKO 600 RR
68 'vert driver RS clone -- gone!
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 06, 08:20 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by Insomniak2 View Post
I have recently purchased a 1968 chevy camaro - The problem is I dont know what type of camaro it is - and I was wondering if anyone could help me out.
The car has about a 7 year old restoration, and when they restored it, Im thinking they mixed and matched RS parts with SS parts.
here is my issue
The car has RS emblem on the Grill the fenders and the gas cap, it has the hidden headlights just like the original chevy camaro RS package boasts...
The question comes when you look at the engine and the hood...
The hood has the two raised "fake" air vents, with the silver mesh which from my understanding were only on the SS models - also on the fender between the bumper and the bumblebee strip it has emblems stating that the engine is a 350. From my understanding the RS package didn't have a 350 V8 option available in 1968.
But were the hidden headlighs available with the SS package?

I know the emblems on a vehicle can be put on rather easily - and the true identity of a vehicle can be hidden, i dont think someone did this maliciously, i think it was just a restoration gone haywire, or someone putting emblems on who didn't have a clue....

I am trying to figure out if I should remove the RS ones and put SS ones, or keep the RS and change out the hood and remove the 350 emblems, everywhere i have looked and researched the RS in 1968 was only available in a 327 v8 but maybe I am wrong, but I would like to have this cleared up by someone with a little more knowledge then me.

The car looks great either way, its an awesome car and is in mint condition, but I am getting ready to start showing it, and I dont want to be looked at like im crazy if i have the wrong emblems on the vehicle, you know?

The only reason I want to change anything is to make the vehicle as original as possible, when the body restoration was done, the engine was overhauled too, so its not original and is definitely a 350, I know I will never get points for being all original but, I dont want to get deducted for having an unoriginal body also -

Then again, I could be completely mistaken with all of my assumptions, but I could sure use a hand bringing this to a conclusion.

Thanks in advance for any help
-Tormented camaro owner
he i had the same problem as well
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 06, 10:20 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Going from the info you've posted, I'd have to say you have a 327 RS Camaro, not a Super Sport. All 350 cars were SSs. The RS emblems on the grille, RS on the fenders and gas cap are consistent with an RS car. The SS cars all had SS badging with no RS on the trim. Only Z/28s had RS emblems on the fenders and Z/28 badging as well, but the early Z/28s has no Z/28 emblems--only 302 on the fenders, and there were no SS Z/28s. Confusing? Dang right is it. But like Eric said, if the fenders have the holes for the RS pins, they are totally different from the SS badges. And no...no SS cars had RS badges anywhere--the SS option overrode the RS trim. As for the Hurst shifter, that's not factory either--4-speed Camaros didn't get a Hurst linkage until 1969. '68s had to suffer that godawful Muncie shifter. Oh--one other thing--if the car has a 10-bolt is a pretty sure thing it has monoleaf rear springs and is a 327 car. The SS cars mostly had 5-leaf springs with the 12-bolt, although some have been documented with 4-leaf springs. Hope this helps and think twice about changing too much once you find out what the car really is--there are fewer and fewer original '68s left, and over time the car will become more valuable in as close to original condition as it came from the factory. Good luck! Enjoy your 1-Gen baby.

"If it breaks, fix it. If you can't fix it, have a beer and be glad it didn't kill you."
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 06, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by brightblue87iroc View Post
Oh--one other thing--if the car has a 10-bolt is a pretty sure thing it has monoleaf rear springs and is a 327 car. The SS cars mostly had 5-leaf springs with the 12-bolt, although some have been documented with 4-leaf springs. Hope this helps and think twice about changing too much once you find out what the car really is--there are fewer and fewer original '68s left, and over time the car will become more valuable in as close to original condition as it came from the factory. Good luck! Enjoy your 1-Gen baby.

Its 10 bolt rear, but it has the multi leaf spring, there is nothing left on this car thats original, its definitley in the modified class, so there nothing I can do

I have come to the conclusion also, that its a 327 factory car, that had after market RS/SS stuff applied to it over the years.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old Aug 4th, 13, 01:21 PM
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Re: 1968 camaro questions... RS? or SS? I dont know what I own :(

Not to be a contrarian, but I have a Booklet, "68 Camaro Illustrated Facts" and it shows the correct 1968 RS/SS 350 having the Rally Sport emblem above the fender fold and SS below it with 350 in the nose stripe.
Additionally, Here are two questions I posed to General Motors Heritage Center - gmhc@gm.com - Can you validate or refute the following statement - “The early 1968 model year SS350 continued to receive the 1967-style finned hood trim, but the SS350 trim transitioned to the velocity stack trim as the year progressed.” Also, would a correct RS/SS 350 have a Rally Sport emblem above the fold and SS below the fold on the fenders?

Their response was: “We believe that in 1968 Camaro SS350s had the finned style hood trim and that SS396s had the velocity stack hood trim. We don't believe your statement about 350s having a velocity stack mid-year to be true. Rally sport above the fold and SS below is correct.” They also stated – “Multi leaf rear springs came on the 275 hp engine (4-speed only) , the 295 hp engine and the 325 hp engine. The original rear axle was a 8.875 inch ring gear for all SS models.” Just sayin,
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