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Messages - Jon Mello

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Wow, I'm sorry to hear that about the '67 Penske model.  I hope you'll eventually come around to making a second attempt.  It's nice to see somebody has made four different decal sheets for the '67 car.  A pleasant surprise.

Besides the terrible hinges on the '70 model, it seems the side window opening is just not right.  Most of the rest of it seems to be OK.

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: '70 T/A carbs/cfm
« on: July 11, 2020, 09:45:03 PM »
The rule limited throttle bore size which essentially ruled out the Dominator carb.  The '70 rule book says the cars "must use a single SCCA approved four barrel carburetor with throttle bore size at the butterfly no larger than 1-11/16" diameter.  Extensions or addition of material, except for throttle linkage, to the exterior of the carburetor body is prohibited.  The carburetor must be a readily available, reasonably priced production model to receive SCCA approval."

The last sentence seems to be aimed squarely at the Autolite in-line four barrel carb.  1970 is the first year you could use an aftermarket intake manifold if you wanted to.


Very nice to have you back.  Can't believe you can stomach that '70 model with those horrible hood hinges but I'm guessing you haven't found something better to work with.  When will you get back on that '67 Penske Camaro project that has languished for too long?

Ralph Webb's Camaro getting ready to head to the track for the '68 Meadowdale Trans-Am.

Photo: Mike Jarchow Collection

This car was owned by Arnie Fick and sponsored by O A Fick Tool and Die Works in Chicago.  It is a 1967 Camaro that was a repo. Almost everything was stripped from it, including the grill, so a 1968 grill was installed.

Jon, I am having trouble with my scanner. Can you please post a couple more of the pictures I sent you of this car.  I know there is the rear shot in the driveway and an action shot from the 1968 Trans Am at Meadowdale with Ralph Webb driving.

does this car exist today?? who owns it?? thank you

Update 2020:  Yes, this car raced by Ralph Webb at Meadowdale still exists and is owned by Keith Libby.  It is being restored to how it was at Meadowdale.  Ownership after Allen Hewitt was:
Dale Koch, Lafayette, IN  1973 - 1975
Kevin Koch, Ohio,  1975 - 1984
Harold B. Jackson,  1984 - 1988
Motorsport Sales, Dallas, TX  1988 - 1989
Dave Davis, Young Chevrolet, Dallas, TX  1989 - 1989
Ed Jensen, Des Moines, IA  1989 - 2010  (Ran SVRA events)
Suzette Jensen, Des Moines, IA  2010 - 2012
Colin Comer, Milwaukee, WI. 2012 - 2018

1968 - Orphans / Re: 18L33171? Muncie Transmission Case
« on: June 28, 2020, 02:09:45 AM »
For search purposes it may be nice to note the partial VIN as 18L331719

For coupe 124378L331719
For convertible 124678L331719

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Racing Mustangs Book
« on: June 25, 2020, 01:38:45 AM »
Steve, I know the amount of effort you put into all of your projects and I have no doubts this book is a thoroughly enjoyable read.  On top of that, I don't know how you find all the cool old photos (most in color) that have generally never been seen before, but I'm thankful you do.  You've priced it well and I hope you sell a bunch of them.  Looks like I'll have to add another book to the library.

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: New Zealand/Australian Camaros And Firebirds
« on: June 17, 2020, 07:02:39 PM »
I didn't realize they went dead.  Sorry to see that but I can only control what I post, not what others do.

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Penske, Godsall, Titus relationship?
« on: May 31, 2020, 03:02:20 PM »
Godsall and Titus joined up for the last race of the 1968 season after Titus left the team due to his unhappiness with the Tunnel-Port 302  This is well before BFG had anything to do with Trans-Am racing.  Godsall wanted to be the Roger Penske of Pontiac and he had already been racing in Trans-Am with Craig Fisher first in a Camaro in '67 and by the summer of '68 he had Fisher in a Firebird.  Godsall was looking for a more high profile star driver for his team and knew of Titus' unhappiness at Ford so that's how the T/G team came about.

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Batteries Used in Trans Am Cars?
« on: May 31, 2020, 02:46:18 PM »
Jon,  was the battery access from the top or front?

Why did they do it?  Easier to access from the trunk.

Access was from the front via a panel with a piano hinge at the bottom and two screws at each top corner.  My car ran two stock tanks, one in the normal location and the other inside the trunk.  This was to allow extra gas to be on board for the longer races like the Daytona 24 Hour and Sebring 12 Hour.  A fuel cell was not required until after my car stopped racing.  The extra tank in the trunk made it difficult if not impossible to remove the battery out the back.

Originality / Re: Another seat hinge question...
« on: May 31, 2020, 02:22:22 AM »
All that I've seen were silver....Joe


Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Batteries Used in Trans Am Cars?
« on: May 27, 2020, 01:24:07 PM »
This how I did it on mine, the same as it was back in the day.  There is an access door to the battery from inside the car.

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Batteries Used in Trans Am Cars?
« on: May 27, 2020, 02:16:55 AM »
I don't believe they reproduce the classic Sears Die Hard battery but it would be neat if they did.  You can find NOS Delco batteries for sale on ebay but they are not cheap.  Prestolite also made batteries that were often used in Nascar back in the day and also other race cars.  Maybe you might stumble across an NOS one if you get lucky.  A cheaper route would be a sticker kit on a newer battery such as in this ebay auction...

Trans-Am Camaros / Re: Batteries Used in Trans Am Cars?
« on: May 21, 2020, 01:33:31 PM »
If you are going for an early '70s look a Sears Die Hard battery was often used.  A lot of racers nowadays are just using an Optima or current replacement battery.  SCCA did start wanting them to be contained in some type of battery box in the '70s but I have seen some guys running them without that now.  I used a repro stock Delco battery (and stock battery tray with extra restraint added to it) for my '67 but they have stopped making them the last I heard.

Originality / Re: Gas Tank Straps+ filler neck
« on: May 12, 2020, 03:38:34 AM »
Gas tank straps are black.

Pics below show the guy at the LOS plant painting the tanks and the rear part of the leaf springs black.  Norwood did not do this.

Also note the pinch weld on the lower quarter panel is painted black.

Mike, no that taller spoiler was not homologated.  It ran several races that way and I have no idea why the SCCA tech inspectors didn't order it removed.

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