I am on my 2nd R-79S reproduction original "side post" battery for my 05A built Norwood 69Z. (Ref Jerry MacNeish's 69 Fact book: in approx. March 69 the side post R-79S was introduced replacing the Y-55; tops post units; but he goes on to explain, " Original cars with top-post were have been found which were built June - July 1969". A possible explanation is that T-60, top-post HD battery was specified when the car was ordered."
I purchased my batteries from Restoration Battery out of Cincinnati, 513-451-1038. They were good to work with, very knowledgeable, and can provide just about any old style Delco battery for any year car you can think of. They will date code the battery for you and know what model battery options were available for your car. They were honest with me that these batteries are "just like the originals” and may not last as long as today's modern technology batteries.
Well they were true to their word. I paid $239.50 originally in 1998 for the first which had a cell go bad after about 4 years, then a second battery at a pro rate price again went dead after about 3 - 4 years. I also purchased one of their SureCharge IV battery tenders and used it religiously. It will start the car to get to a show, but I am lucky to get the car started to get back home from the show!
At "point shows" (if that is what is what your into), as long as you have an NOS or an original style battery in the trunk of the car, no points will be deducted. Its a bit of a pain, but I carry along my R-79S and slip into position at a points show so the under hood look totally original. Details...details...details...but that is what wins points! (I just hope the judges don't ask me to start the car!)
Personally, having a "Delco" battery in our Camaros just seems to fit better, and goes with the saying "Keep your GM all GM".
All told, so far I have had no problems for over two years with the AC Delco "Professional Car & Truck" battery, side post #78-7Yr, 960 cranking Amp, 770 cold cranking amp model.
Does any one else out there have an original or suvivor 69 with side post battery or side post battery cables? If so, what is your assy build date? Ref page 162 in the 69 AIM calling out the side post cables.