Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 4th, 06, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Kalif Johnson
 
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Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

I apologize in advance if this post shows up twice: I wrote it once and it didnít show up, so Iím going for it again.

Here goes: I am going to finally make the plunge. Iíve waited 30+ years to own one, and now itís going to come to pass. So, if you wouldnít mind, I need some help. I just began my quest for a Camaro about a month ago and, already, Iím anxious. I have only looked at one car, and I saw another online fairly close to my town. In my mind, I already have it narrowed to these 2 as choices to pick from. I know thereís hundreds out there to choose from, but impatience is getting the best of me. Keep in mind that I know absolutely nothing about cars so Iím on my own.

Car #1 Ė (I got to see and drive this one) Ė 68 SS. Itís been owned by the same guy for over 25 years.
- 350 4 bolt, 308 posi, orig 4 speed 10 boltÖ. Mostly original car
- Small scratch / dent in the driver door, a little larger one in the rear quarter panel
- He crashed it into a telephone pole one year after he had it (1982). Replaced the front end with an RS front. Did a restore at that time
- Interior restored recently with RS interior Ė Nice job
- When he replaced the carpet, he noticed a few small rot holesÖ so he fiberglassed the entire floorpan.
- Front disc brakes
- RS Headlights need new vacuum switches
- Paint is faded
- No rust that I can see, other than surface rust in the trunk
- Engine compartment needs a good cleaning and painting
It drives, sounds and looks (what Camaro doesnít?) good. Other than that I donít know specifics. Asking $17,000.00

Car #2 Ė 69 SS. Also has had 3 owners. I havenít seen it yet, but am planning to see it this Sunday. I say pics and it looks really straight. Hereís some specifics (as per the owner):
- 1969 Camaro SS in great condition. It's an older restoration but in great shape. EVERYTHING WORKS. NO RUST (has pictures of the body restoration process)
- Originally 350 with a 4-speed converted it to an auto
- 68,000 miles
- Previous owner had it garaged for 16 years.
- During resto there were a few very minor body rot areas that were welded and grinded down before the finish work was doneÖ No fill bondo
- New parts: all emblems/badges, all door, roofrail, trunk weatherstripping, window felts and chromes, wheel well chromes (not installed), hood adjusters, rear louvers, new front spoiler.
- An original GM cowl induction hood that works (not original to the car), original rear spoiler.
- Nice interior - Auto Meter Monster tach which is bolted to the plastic riser NOT to the body. The original console gauge cluster was replaced with an aftermarket Auto Meter cluster
- B&M shifter and a manual "lock-up" for the torque converter
- GM crate ZZ4 with 385 horsepower. Ported aluminum heads and intake which bump it up to 385 HP/410 TQ. The motor has less than 20,000 miles - 750 Holley. The HEI that came with the motor was replaced with an MSD distributor, coil and box. The headers are full length Hooker racing headers with 3 chamber flowmasters and dump out the back.
- GM 700R4 which was added at the same time as the crate motor.The crossmember is the correct GM part as well as the carburetor brackets are all GM parts. The gear ratios for the transmission are: 1st 3.06:1, 2nd 1.63:1, 3rd 1:1, 4th 0.7:1.
- The rear end was also changed out at the same time as the rest of the drivetrain and is a 10 bolt out of an early seventies Nova. It was rebuilt with a posi unit and 2.73 gears.
- The front end has cut coil springs ---- has a new set of Hotchkis springs and shocks he will include. The car came originally with power steering and power disc brakes. The brakes have been changed out to four wheel corvette C4 disc brakes in the FRONT AND REAR!. The rearend leaf springs are stock multi-leaf springs.

He is asking $18,000 for this.

My dilemma is that A. I have no idea what Iím looking at and, B. I have no idea which is a better value. I kow it kind of comes down to what I like, etc. but, given the fact that this is going to be my first, I want to do it right. Any comments, suggestions, or diatribes would be welcome.

Steve
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 4th, 06, 09:27 PM
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Dan
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

The 68 SS should have a 12 bolt; it's probably not an SS. Car #2 sounds more promising. Maybe there is a forum member in your area who could help you check it out.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 4th, 06, 09:56 PM Thread Starter
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Kalif Johnson
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

Any idea how I can find out if there's a member in my area? I live in Modesto, Ca.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 4th, 06, 10:05 PM
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

Here's a Cali-boy thread to get you started

https://www.camaros.net/forums/showthread.php?t=75862

P.S. The "site discussion forum" is generally for technical issues about the site, I think the "bench racing forum" will get more responses. Good luck..and keep looking around,you know you really want a 67.

Last edited by 67 L-35; Apr 4th, 06 at 10:20 PM.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 4th, 06, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

I do? Huh....... I did not know that. Well, guess I'll have to start looking for a '67 now.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 12:48 AM
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Keith
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

hello Dreamweaver,

I recently went through a "mid-life crisis" too........Very interesting. My crisis took me through 8 states and over 3500 miles before I left my family (wife and 2 girls) in a Hotel room 4 hours from home and got on a plane. Found my car at the other end of the flight, bought it and flew home. My car is a '67 SS and since finding this site I am living my dream. The people here are so helpful, ask your questions....research your car, I am sure someone here will help you find the car you want. Good Luck in your quest.

Keith
1967 L-35 SS

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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Kalif Johnson
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

Whaaa? If I understand you correctly, it sounds like you traveled across the country, spent a lot of money just finding a car, then had it shipped back? I guess this addiction is for real. I am completely obsessed.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 12:59 AM
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Keith
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

Hehehehe, partly correct..........I didn't have it shipped back. I ended up buying a trailer 2 weeks later and drove it empty to get the car, loaded her and trailered it home. How can I trust someone else to drive it 9+ hours? I needed to go get it myself.

Keith
1967 L-35 SS

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 01:07 AM
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

Re: Car #1 - anytime you see "so he fiberglassed the entire floorpan", run away. This isn't the correct way to repair floorpan rust, can makes things worse, and is a real PITA to remove to do right. Been there, ground that junk off...

Car #2 sounds better to me too, but it's hard to say. It sounds like a nice, driveable car if the mods are done correctly. Sounds like it could be one a TC member's car.

These days, every car is an SS/RS/Z/COPO/Pace Car. There are clues to tell you if it was or wasn't what it's being represented as when it was built, but without the matching drivetrain, why does it matter how it was "born."

Eric
69 'vert project big block/TKO 600 RR
68 'vert driver RS clone -- gone!
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 03:57 AM
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

You need help looking at these cars from someone knowledgeable about them. You can't do it yourself without running the risk of getting burned very badly.

68 RS Z/28
67 L78
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 04:19 AM
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Terry
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

I've been down the same path, had quite a few muscle cars back as a teenager, now 25 years later I've had 3 Camaros. I've learned a lot of things the hard way, the expensive way...now I'm wiser, but poorer!

I do have a couple suggestions. First, don't buy a camaro on impulse, might not be the deal it looks to be. It really is a good idea to find one or more TC members in your area. I live near the twin cities so I joined the Northstar Camaro Club, helped me learn a lot about pricing, etc.
Also, if you're not a mechanic or a bodyman, it makes sense to buy the best car you can, stretch your hard-earned $ as far as possible, because you'll pay someone else a lot more to fix up things that are wrong than if you buy a nearly completed car.
One more thing, seems logical to steer clear of the SS/RS/Z/28 cars, clones are everywhere so documentation becomes a detetctive game. If you DO find a real one, you won't be able to change much on it or you lose originality and value. It's more fun (if you are on a budget) to buy a base model Camaro, and make it look like your dream car.

Having said this, I still say 'go for it', it's a great hobby and you can also go get groceries in the Camaro, so it has some usefulness in the wife's eye.

Terry
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 05:54 AM
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

The second car sounds very promising.

As others said, the statement about fiberglassing the entire floor of #1 would have me RUNNING in the other direction.

Go to the usercp, and put your actual city in, rather than jusy "northern Cali" it will make it easier for other members to find you.

Get someone who knows what they are doing to go with you to look at a car. These type of requests show up in bench often, and are always responded to positively.

Don't get too excited or anxious, but DO be ready to close the purchase immediately should you come across the right car.

I'll send a note to Dennis to move this to bench.





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New website for my vert is coming together. Do ya like the slide show on the home page?
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 06, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

My apoligies to everyone --- I seem to have cluttered this site by having the same post in 2 locations. I will make this the only other post / reply tho this, as I am going ot continue the thread on the "bench racing forum" as suggested. Didn't want the replies to go un-responded to:

DanW: I could have been wrong on this one. He may very well have said it was a 12 bolt. I'm such a novice, I don't even know what that means. I feel like a soph in high school in a roomful of PHD's. Love the challenge, though

67 L-35 & bbd564: Thanks for the tip on finding a local to help. One person has already responded!

Eric Kammerer: Thanks for the comment. Your advice has been dittoed by at least one other, so I take that as a confirmation.

JimM: Ditto on my reply to Eric, and thanks for the tip on changing my "identity". When I first decided to cruise this site I was in "Identity Protection Mode". I definately feel more comfortable, so I will change my ID to include city. BTW - I'm in Modesto, Ca. for those that care to help.

tmannet: Advice taken to heart. After my 4th latte, I will slow it down a bit.

Thanks to all......... moving further replies to the other forum (where it probably belonged in the first place).

Steve
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 06, 11:41 AM
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Don
 
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Re: Need Help - Mid-Life Crisis

I vote for car #2, mainly due to the glass floor in #1. If rust was that bad at one time,,, who know where it came from or what... Hate to see the trunk down inside the quarters. Other than that,, I still would not jump.. Go to shows and look around,,, gives you and idea whats out there and compare one from another, look for the differances and compare and above all,, if you are married, dum da dum dum, take mama with you,,, If she say she has no interest, well, then you are free.

Don
TC # 349
Zdld17:69 Z/RS,306, NOR141111, 9N554XXX, 12A, X3G, 59/59,723, AFR 195,CCC282/290HR, TKO 600, BU1122B1E Owner since Dec 1968

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