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Author Topic: My 69 not that much fun anymore  (Read 8472 times)
9T4Z
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« on: April 02, 2011, 05:50:32 PM »

 I need to share.

  After working for a number of years to make my 69 'correct', I'm really feeling kinda blue. I lost my heated garage three years back so it's been kinda hard just keeping up with the 'preservation' of the car much less pushing it to the next level. Late last fall I removed the intake and exhaust manifolds with the intention of repainting and having the manifolds ceramic coated. The rust was killing me. Found the correct dated master and had it rebuilt, same with the booster. Cast ceramic done.

Now I'm rethinking where I'm going with the car.  Other than the Judged events like ACA and the like, the average guy could care two cents. I open the hood and they look and say 'oh' and they're off. I really really enjoy talking to knowledgeable Camaro fans, but they are few and far between.  Most conversations revolve around ' oh I always wanted a Pace Car or whatever'.
The trip to Carlisle is a major endeavor, and now that ACA has moved, I'm not much in the mood to push the extra miles with the trailer and the gas$$$.

So other than a few hundred people on the planet who really cares that its a 'born with drive-train'.... its not a L78, oh just a 350. Oh I see you have the correct brake lines, nice.

Tired of driving around on date correct wheels that hop at 70 mph, on 'correct Goodyear bias/belted tires'. Tired of another 'misfire' from my crappy 'date correct' wires.  And so on and on.

It's just not that much fun worrying about the dust on the road, gravel, rainstorms, etc.

Selling it is not an option. Prices are soft, and I spent bucks knowing that the only person who benefits from restored is the buyer. So I want to keep it but just think right now I'm going to 're-think' the car.

Taking it up to the next level..... Vintage Elite or Legends would require even more effort. Would need to repaint (I have base clear) dated glass and a 'Gardner exhaust'. And then what... more bucks and never take the car outside again? Hell as it is the car feels like a Museum piece.

So..... here is what I'm thinking.  If I had have owned this car, back in the 70's when I was a young man, what would I have done to make it 'mine'Huh  I certainly would not have left it just as it was delivered from the factory. I think I would have put headers on it, decent looking valve covers, some chrome under the hood, nice wheels and tires... and driven it like I stole it.

My rant, sorry must have been the long long winter 
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Gary 9T4Z

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« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2011, 06:00:03 PM »

gary, i agree 100%. put some torq thrust wheels on it, an edelbrock intake, somew mickey thompson valve covers, lakewood traction bars and drive it till the 8 track craps out on it!
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« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2011, 07:36:34 PM »

For legends (not sure about the new Carlisle judging) base coat clear is fine so why the paint change? JMHO, but I would give this a lot of thought as it seems you have other toys to enjoy. I find the challenge of Legends just that challenging. There and other places you are around car guy/gals that know our cars. But whatever course you take, make it fun. Grin
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« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2011, 07:48:33 PM »

I feel your sentiments but I don't think a pace car is the right choice to drive until the wheels come off...or until it looks like the 69 in yesterdays home page. Especially now that GM is building takeoffs from the most desirable models. I think most of us are up against this same dilemma. I for one wish I could afford to buy a nice SS (numbers or not) and build it to ride. I envy guys that say they run their cars like they were meant to be driven. My car is a driver but there is a limit to how far I will go.

I am sure there are several inexpensive First Gens out there that will serve your purpose...anyway, my 2 cents.
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Ron C.
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« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2011, 07:54:59 PM »

how about just going to your local car shows and cruise nights and enjoy the car a bit.No pressure to worry about if the judges will like this or that.Just take the year off from the BIG CAMARO SHOW and just have fun with the car locally.That is what I think I might do also this year as like you said the camaro nats are further and will cost more this year so I am just going to enjoy the local events.
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« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2011, 08:10:40 PM »

Gary, I think at one time or another we have all been there. The most fun I ever had was in a Gen one Camaro that was a non number matching car, had no fear of driving and modifying it...A little different story now with my current Camaro as the NOS parts I'm collecting for my number matching car are killing my bank account. I agree with Marty you don't want to modify or run the heck out of your pace car, there are enough cheap cars out there you can play with and have fun. At the end of the day it's your car and do with it what you will. This hobby is meant to be fun and exciting and sometimes we loose that perspective.
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« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2011, 09:07:50 PM »

Gary,I could not agree more,Ive owned my Z10 since 76.I babied it the minute I bought it,put on about 5000 mi the first 4 yrs ,drove it 1 time after that & parked it.I just finished a restoration used as many original parts as possible & have original engine trans, axle sheetmetal ect.Now that im done Ive promised myself I would drive it.I spent some money on it but not like most guys because it was in good shape to begin with.I dont mind spending some cash once in awhile if needed but a contours,or legends show only interests me in learning more about the cars not spending more money to make it perfect.I like going to car shows but I rarely take mine.I enjoy talking to car guys & I stay away from the obnoxious "know it alls" Im going to "try" to just enjoy the car & not freak out because the starter is not correctly date coded. I want to retire in a few yrs that seems more important to me at this time in my life.Sold my vettes ,truck & plenty of parts,I feel better already.Only the camaro is left & that is plenty for me.Enjoy your car & have some fun with it,put a set of "Purple Hornys" on it! LOL
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« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2011, 09:49:16 PM »

Thanks for the thoughtful comments guys... really.  Kiss

OK so stripes are cleared as well, so paint for them would be in order, anyway. Has a spare mirror, RH door, touchup not a breeze. I think I need a few stone chips. Really would stop me fussing so much about it.

Agree that a Pace Car should not be 'hurt', my bro thinks I'm crazy also.

Yes there are cheap cars out there.... I've got 5 Camaro's a Vette, motorcycle and three drivers. I collect, never get rid of stuff.  My ex got the house and I got the wheels.  If I buy another car they will send me to the loony bin.
Local car shows are fun , but mostly they look at first-gens but talk third gens.  You know the lingo... that's why I built my crazy 9T4Z and ended up with a couple third gens and it keeps my son very engaged with my projects
 Now I have to focus on getting rid of cars and parts, and deciding what route will make me happier. I enjoy the hobby of learning about correct cars, probably more than I would enjoy having a 'concours' one  Tongue Spell check doesn't like that word!

While I was polishing my vintage M/T valve covers, I smelled something burning, couple minutes ago. Thought it was the drill. Nope, left dinner on the burner. Girlfriend out. Looks like soup tonight. Embarrassed

I am going to create a new class for car shows...Vintage Street, no parts on the vehicle more than 10 years newer than the car was made. Only you have to start with a correct car and go backwards. . Wink

Typed up a list of what was going to come off the car, and what would go on. Other than wheels and tires I have about everything I need. It will all be stored carefully rest assured. I don't really think I can 'hurt' the car, it will all be bolt on stuff... circa 1976 so that it will 'recreate' a feeling of the era. First thing to come off are those door decals. I have lots of vintage race stuff from the mid 70s and bits of chrome dress up, aluminum pieces etc

The Princess is not dead, I'm just putting her to sleep for a few years. When I get the urge and enough energy, she will be be back, better than ever.

In the meantime maybe this is not the place for me to post up a list of what I plan, counter intuitive to the CRG mandate, or maybe I should start a web-link and I can get comments.  Maybe start another thread in 'un-restoration'?  Cheesy
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« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2011, 11:09:27 PM »

Gary, I understand the delima.  My Z10 was a decent driver when I bought it, then I started bringing it back to where it need to be.  Lot's of dollars and effort.  That was over the first 6 or 7 years that I owned the car.  To take it to the next level I would need to strip it down and repaint.  But then I new I would not drive the thing for feaf of bug splatter or heaven forbid a rock chip.  So I decided that I would have more  fun just leaving it as it was and driving it.  So, I pulled the engine, to preserve it, and replaced it with a ZZ4.  This really changed the personality of the car.  I woke it up.  Much more powerful and I didn't worry about blowing up the motor.  This was great for the next couple of years.  Then I started to want another toy.  But selling the Z10 is out of the question. 

So, my newest toy is a 2006 Z06 Corvette.  I love this thing and it's really a much better ride than the Camaro.  But, on nice days, when the mood hits, the Z10 is waiting to be taken for a spin. My first true love is a 1st gen camaro, and probably always will be.

Cheers!

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« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2011, 06:57:34 AM »

Play with it. The car is more fun that way.  Swap the wheels, get a different exhaust, play with a NOM motor, Add some "Day 2" traction bars etc.

You gotta have something to play with.

-Mark.

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« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2011, 08:31:00 AM »

You gotta have something to play with.

I think he already has that part covered...something about a girlfriend? Kiss
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« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2011, 09:52:29 AM »

I felt the same way a few years back. Have always drove my car even when I was showing it. Have not had it judged for 7or8 years. I started looking for Day2 street machine stuff like Sun Tach, Torque Trust wheels and radial tires. When I bought the car it had an old school fiberglass stinger style hood and put it on. Also run a set of 69 XT wheels with Goodyear Eagle AT's and dog dish caps. Now i'm shopping for a set of Lakewood bars.
Drive your car to the cruise ins and the shows but don't get it judged. Talking to people about our cars is what i enjoy and when you run into a "know it all' just shake your head o.k. and move on.

Richard
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« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2011, 10:17:40 AM »

Yes, definitely have fun with it. If you don't enjoy it, you won't be happy.

That's the reason I like mine... it's nothing special... the previous owner cloned it into an SS.
I don't worry about it too much. I just have fun with it.
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Fred - Milwaukee, WI
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« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2011, 11:18:10 AM »

Play with it. The car is more fun that way.  Swap the wheels, get a different exhaust, play with a NOM motor, Add some "Day 2" traction bars etc.

You gotta have something to play with.

-Mark.


Yes! That's what I was sentimentalizing about....' Day 2.'  Didn't understand the reference from Mark and Richard but that seems to be the direction. I Google'd  the term and ended up at Team Chevelle.
Is there any other references to this 'Day2' thing?  I guess you'd just have to pick through old magazines and the Summit catalog  but maybe there are new publications going that direction?

Thanks 
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« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2011, 12:40:19 PM »

Its Day-2 fever my friends. To me, full blown restos and frame-offs are from years past. NOT worth the money and the cars just become lawn ornaments. With cars like those you also need a truck and trailer to go anywhere. That to me is spending just stupid money for the average or above guy. Day-2 the car with vintage era parts and you will see a whole new car  and tons of fun and enjoyment. The judging thing has really become a thorn IMO. Whats the point anymore? Authentication yes, Concours judging, who cares!
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« Reply #15 on: April 03, 2011, 03:45:47 PM »

Gary,
I've never heard of what "Day 2" really means but its been around awhile. My take on it means on the second day after buying a car back in the late 60's and early 70's the first thing an owner would do is put on a set of mag wheels and fat tires, headers, traction bars and a Sun tach on the steering column. Very few people would leave them factory stock unless their dad bought it for them and those guys wouldn't race them anyway.
You'll here Day 2 used by some people when talking about Supercars (Yenkos, Motion, Berger etc.)

Richard
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« Reply #16 on: April 03, 2011, 04:45:12 PM »

Day2 is the best!!!  I did as you did as well correct heads, dist, nut and bolt  no for to drive went day2 to never looked back you can enjoy the car and a little fun finding the old race car parts  the 500 wheel, traction action bars, headers, add every thing after buying the car new and went down to the speed shop alot of fun
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« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2011, 07:50:49 AM »

Day 2 to me means headers, cam, flowmasters, and rear gears. That is what I did in the 70,s and what I still do. I do well at local shows and enjoy pulling in with the cam thumping and the mufflers bumping. I respect the concours guys and love to look at them but what I what really makes me feel good is a smokey burn out and sitting at the stop light just listening to the cam thump. All mine basicly look original but but are a lot more fun.
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« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2011, 03:26:58 PM »

If you want to Day-2 a car today it should be done with vintage parts. Not the Summit or Jegs parts. Tough to find that stuff but makes it all the fun. Alot of cars before resto had these old 60's-70's parts on them but many toss them duing the resto process. Fix em, paint em, detail em, clean em, drive em, and or race em! No more lawn ornaments and cookie cutter stuff. JMO
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« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2011, 03:54:26 PM »

So Sammy...you don't like my slapper bars I put on Black Beauty, you know the ones I got at Summit, You could always sell me a set of those yellar ones you got's.... Grin

 And yea, day two it and have some fun, and make some passes too.. Wink
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« Reply #20 on: April 04, 2011, 07:12:41 PM »

If you want to Day-2 a car today it should be done with vintage parts. Not the Summit or Jegs parts. Tough to find that stuff but makes it all the fun. Alot of cars before resto had these old 60's-70's parts on them but many toss them duing the resto process. Fix em, paint em, detail em, clean em, drive em, and or race em! No more lawn ornaments and cookie cutter stuff. JMO

That's what I'm talking about!  I have a lot of 'vintage' parts.... except wheels.  And NO I am not going to go there... more square wheels!  I need to find something authentic looking that will run straight and true, without worrying about cracked aluminum or rusty welds. Maybe with a decent modern tire sized to look like the old N50-15's out back and something skinny on the front.  Not toooo skinny.  Any suggestions?

Not doing the track bars... likely going mild lift with the Air-Shocks as mostly I remember that you could do one OR the other....mind you I could always paint the Jegs's ones yellow   Cool
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« Reply #21 on: April 04, 2011, 07:18:00 PM »

OOO  I got just what you need !!!!!  I have an Accell DUAL POINT distributor and Accell Super Coil too !! Bright Yellow so it stands out. Even has the Brown cap and extra Loooong wires so they stay off the headers. Shocked
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« Reply #22 on: April 04, 2011, 09:06:35 PM »

Mine never left Day 2, I have owned it since 1979.  I bought it with an L88,  M21 488 gears!   Now it sports a BLown 502, Richmond 5 speed, Moser 35 Spline 410 12 bolt.    The Lakewood bars have always been on it, I recently installed the 3 pt rollbar (owned for 20 yrs)   I do have a DZ 302 in the garage if needed.    Day 2 for life!
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« Reply #23 on: April 05, 2011, 06:40:19 AM »

So Sammy...you don't like my slapper bars I put on Black Beauty, you know the ones I got at Summit, You could always sell me a set of those yellar ones you got's.... Grin

 And yea, day two it and have some fun, and make some passes too.. Wink
Mike, I love you and those slapper bars. You are one of my heros and you know it! I am also tickled pink that Cliff Lee is back! The poor Indians.
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« Reply #24 on: April 05, 2011, 08:25:01 AM »

OOO  I got just what you need !!!!!  I have an Accell DUAL POINT distributor and Accell Super Coil too !! Bright Yellow so it stands out. Even has the Brown cap and extra Loooong wires so they stay off the headers. Shocked

Already got em!
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« Reply #25 on: April 06, 2011, 09:55:05 AM »

Heres Day 2 on Day 2, this is what we did back then. Lakewood slapper bars (painted black cause I got a ticket for them being below the tire rim), 14 x 10" Cragers in the rear with Highjacker air shocks and M-50 14 Pro Track tires, 350 bored .030 over with Turbo 292 casting heads, radical Crane cam, 4:56 gears, Blackjack Headers, Mallory Dual point, Yellow plug wires:


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« Reply #26 on: April 06, 2011, 03:11:07 PM »

I bought a nice Z in 1982, and drive it on nice days. It has original motor, trans, rear, and most original parts, but it's missing some original items. I just was never that interested in whether it had every correct item. It's not why I bought it. And I don't really care that it will never win any shows, etc. I just enjoy it for what it is, a nice looking, nice running 302 Camaro. I have the most fun with it winding the motor in the boonies where nobody else is around.

Jimmy V.
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« Reply #27 on: April 08, 2011, 09:08:55 PM »

These Camaros above look more like day 4 or 5.  But they are cool.  I remember the day when the idea was to install a set of air shocks and get the back our cars as high in the air as we could and stuff the biggest baddest tires we could find (unlike today where we lower our cars for actual handling.  Whoda thunk it).  Never mind the fact that we destroyed what little ride & comfort our cars came with (like a solid axle tank on a cobble road).  This jacking up the back of the car threw off the center balance of the whole car and I actually had to brace against the steering wheel to keep from sliding down off the seat when braking hard as it was like sitting on a sliding board (what seatbelts?  Did my car even have them back then?)
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« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2011, 10:35:03 AM »

especially if you just armour-all your seats...
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« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2011, 11:33:16 AM »

Handling and stock first gens can't be used in the same sentence.  The parts available back then were all about 'straight line' racing and emulating Grumpy.

 It's only in recent decades that owners suddenly wanted cars to 'handle' and parts to suit (coil over, tubular A arms,drop spindles, disc brake packages, SFC, poly bushings etc) became available due to demand. Sure you could set it up to run an oval, but wouldn't try any hairpins. That was for the Vette boys.
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« Reply #30 on: April 09, 2011, 02:21:18 PM »

That armor all was also helpfull on dates, just make a hard right turn.....
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« Reply #31 on: April 13, 2011, 10:48:27 AM »

Wayne - the Z looks great! I don't think I've heard it since you did the motor work. If it ever stops raining maybe we can take 'em out. The '68 is ready! I'll try to "keep up" LOL.       Larry
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« Reply #32 on: July 22, 2011, 03:23:47 PM »

the thought of having a perfectly restored nut and bolt car is to me just a thought. I want a driver- a nice one but not perfect - chips/dings be damned! I'm not going to live forever, My son can do with it what he wants when I'm gone
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« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2011, 07:15:29 AM »

I been collecting the day2 stuff for many years. Mainly the parts in the 60s early 70s Motion Catologs. The real day2 stuff is hard to find like the CD Ignition box, fuel pumps , Holley 3BB, NMW toe tabs, early Edelbrock intake, Sun gauges, Thrush muflers, Inglewood tires, correct wheels, etc.

I just found some of the 7mm soild core burnt orange color ignition wire that I had wanted to get for many years. The seller found it in his basement left over from the speed shop he had back in the day.

finding each real day2 part is like a mini barn find Smiley
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« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2011, 08:14:42 PM »

the thought of having a perfectly restored nut and bolt car is to me just a thought. I want a driver- a nice one but not perfect - chips/dings be damned! I'm not going to live forever, My son can do with it what he wants when I'm gone
Well, I'm just about finished turning the nut and bolt restored car into a 'day 2''  Very happy with the result.  Edelbrock, Holly, Accel, Dynomax.  Stock wheels for now.

gf
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« Reply #35 on: July 24, 2011, 06:42:01 AM »

Nothing better than going for a country side drive in our 68 Z . It has all original drive-line but oh yes the engine paint and manifolds  have burnt , worn out paint on them but I do not worry anymore. I use to worry about every bug , chip,ding and idiot that pointed out faults on the Z . When I drive it now I just smile to think of the feeling of actually owning a real 68 Z even if it is not a trailer queen. Enjoy the car you worked hard to buy ,own and maintain.Its your choice what you do with it. Grin Grin
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« Reply #36 on: July 28, 2011, 04:33:25 PM »

Gary,

Thanks for the post.  Many of us have or are facing the same questions. I finished Legends last year. The three year quest was one of the most fun periods of my collector car phase. (Remember Dustin Hoffman in Little Big Man?) The research, finding parts, restoring parts, making new friends, earning points back, etc. was very, very rewarding for me. I wouldn't trade that experience for anything. I have wondered about "life after Legends". My solution is to focus on my other '69, non-numbers matching Camaro. Jerry MacNeish calls it my "mutt". Personally, I really like the Day 2 approach, which is where I am leaning. So, why not do both? I plan to keep the Legends car for special occasions and drive the wheels off the Day 2 car.

John
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« Reply #37 on: July 28, 2011, 06:51:46 PM »

You can do the day 2 thing to a degree that doesn't damage the core and then it can be put back if you so desire at a later date with minimal effort.
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