Our story is almost a common one, when we were young Muscle Cars were still new and you could order anything you wanted as long as you had the numbers for items you wanted. We mostly love the GM lines Camaro, Chevelle
and Corvettes. WE had our share of cool cars and continue to buy cool new cars today like the Cadillac XLR
and Escalade but we continue to love Muscle Cars.
We were talking to a friend who was selling a Basket Case 1969 Camaro that was just painted and needed to be reassembled. We contacted Roger Ferris at SHOWCAR SPECIALIST in Hazelwood, Missouri to see if he could build this Camaro for our Wedding Anniversary. Roger took on the project but was unhappy with the shape of the car so he took it completely apart. Every fastener and every part on the car was removed, replaced and made better than new.
The job took more than a year to complete but it was worth the wait.
Dan & his wife Kathy wanted all of the Modern and Safe items for the Camaro to be there like air conditioning, power steering,
power brakes, power windows and of coarse plenty of POWER.
With all of the options for engines now a days we chose to buy a Crate engine from GM Performance, it is a RAMJET 350 with Fuel Injected and 350 Horse Power. To make sure the power gets to the pavement it has a 9” rear end with 3.55 Detroit True Trac gears. To handle the shifting it has a Kiesler Engineering 5 speed transmission with a hydraulic clutch. Again with it being a Driver you need to make sure it stops and stops easily, we installed Wilwood disc brakes at all 4 wheels with a high pressure Wilwood master cylinder and adjustable proportioning valve. To make the Camaro handle like it is on rails it has Hotchkins control arms, spindles and sway bars on the front and rear with KYB shocks making sure you don’t feel all of the bumps. The heating and air conditioning is from Vintage Air while cooling the engine is an aluminum radiator from Ron Davis with built in electric cooling fans, over flow tank and shroud. To keep the hot sun out we installed smoked glass all around with power windows by Electro Life. Making sure you hear the Camaro it has a fully polished stainless exhaust system that we made one of a kind with the exhaust tips coming out special openings in the rear valance. For a fuel system it has a Rick’s stainless tank system with the pump enclosed for the best fuel delivery. To keep an eye on things it has 6 Auto Meter gauges in a Carbon Fiber gauge panel and for steering that is handled by the Flaming River column and Waterfall steering wheel.
Getting ahead of ourselves back to the build of the car.
We had to put it on a rotisserie and remove every part and fastener on it. We had to replace the full floor and trunk floor. To fast forward I will just say that almost every part on this car has been replaced except for the 8 bolts that hold the window guides in place.
With this car you have to remember we had an idea of a budget we were going to try to adhere to so we didn’t get real crazy with custom body mods. We did try to make every thing smooth and clean starting with under the car. Knowing that Dan was going to get a lift some day I wanted it to be easy to clean and something to be proud of when friends would come over and have a few cold ones. This is when things kind of got out of control, everything was painted and put back together using “ARP” polished stainless fasteners from Totally Stainless. With the 12 point fasteners and the attention to detail you can tell the bottom of this car was not just painted but it was a work of art. When you open the Cowl Induction hood it is another surprise when you first see the Ramjet engine, you would almost think the engine wouldn’t run because you don’t see all of the normal clutter you normally see. When doing the engine bay special attention was paid to all of the wiring, A/C -heater hoses and battery cables. For the engine drive accessories we used a March Performance Serpentine Drive System for the alternator, A/C compressor and power steering pump, all polished. It took a lot of extra work but it was worth it in the end.
When it comes time to drive the car you want to be comfortable so we had Hytec Auto Trim add TEA’S bucket seats and a full custom leather interior which continues into the trunk.
There are so many custom features on this Camaro it is hard to tell you all of them, but we can give you an idea of what some people think of them overall.
Besides the joy of driving this car it is also fun showing it. We have only shown it at 3 car shows so far, the 1st time out it won “Best In Class” and “Best Engineered” at a local show.
Then we took it to its 1st major judged showed in Springfield, ILL to the Route 66 Mother Road Festival and Car Show. It won “Best ’67-’69 CAMARO” and “BEST ENGINE” with over 2500 cars and trucks registered.
With our 3rd show we took it to our 1st in-door show in Kansas City, Mo. for the WORLD OF WHEELS SHOW. We won “BEST ’60-’69 Mild Custom Hard Top” which had a huge amount of cars in that class, we also won “OUTSTANDING UNDERCARRIAGE” overall. Both huge in a in-door show so needless to say we here at SHOWCAR SPECIALIST are thrilled with how well the car is doing on or off of the road.
If the headers weren’t tuning colors from driving, it would have done even better. Like I said early in this story this car is STILL A DRIVER. If we lose points for driving we make it up by having the fun driving, I think you know what I mean.
With all of this it is a blast to drive with hardly any effort at all. We hope you like our story as much as we LOVE our new CAMARO.