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Doorgunner's '68 Convertible Project

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Old 09-10-2013, 06:10 AM
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Default Doorgunner's '68 Convertible Project

NOTE: When I started this thread, I had no idea of what life had in store...so this is turning into more than a build-thread.

I'm new to Corvettes and want to buy a very neglected '68 convertible near my home with late '70s front & rear bumpers....

Side note: I've had the "fever" since 1968 when I saw that $4,550 red Corvette on the showroom floor at the local dealership.....and ended up with the $2,695 1969 Camaro convertible that was sitting next to the Corvette!

I'm not trying to "restore" to a factoy look since the car is a "basket-case" vehicle......I have no bodywork experience.....just want to get the body back to 1968-looks....and have a D.D./keeper just for me.....

Thanks for any input/threads-to-read...since I'm learning as I go....

Some of the experimental mods that I try on this car would NEVER EVER be tried by me on an original car!


Build Date Dec 14, 1967


Time for a TABLE OF CONTENTS!

Advice/Finding the "Right Car".................................... ......pg. 1-2

Bringing "her" home.................................... ..................pg. 3

Removing interior & Re-insulating/soundproofing..............pg. 4-5

CAI (kinda')/Seat covers/Alternator mods.........................pg. 6

Temporary Exhausts/Seat covers/Salvage yard Vette.........pg. 7

More CAI/Cooling fan mods/Brake rebuild.........................pg. 8

Brakes/Differential/Trailing Arm Rebuild............................pg. 9-10

M. Cylinder/Distribution Valve/Re-center Differential Prob...pg. 11

4 Wheel Alignment and Problems................................ .....pg. 12-14

Suspension Alignment/Springs/Shocks/ChitChat................pg. 15-17

"Straightening Bubba's" Trailing Arms/Interior Carpet........pg. 18

Oil Pan Leak/More Suspension Repairs/Damper repair........pg. 19-20

Exhaust Wrap/Infra-red-Gun readings..............................pg . 21-22

Seat Covers/OilPan Gasket/Seat Covers............................pg. 23-25

Cooling system cleaning/RANT!/Gatlinburg Trip..................pg. 26-27

Sandbagging warped hood/Idle Chit Chat..........................pg. 28-29

Engine Overheating/Son and Depression/Seat Belts............pg. 30-32

Exhaust Mods/Softtop S. Carolina Trip/Top Rebuild..............pg. 49-52

Softtop Rebuild................................. ..............................pg. 53-57

Steering Column Rebuild................................. .................pg. 60-62

Allergy Treatment aarg/Broken Door Locks.........................pg. 63-64

Car Alarms/Parachutes/Projects................................ .........pg. 65-67

Rebuilding Door Mechanisms/Door Lock Rebuild...................pg. 68-69

Door Panels/Car Show/Speedometer Gears/ChitChat.............pg. 70-71

Passenger Door Panel-Again/Veteran's Discussion..................pg. 72

Calo69 Car Show Pics (lots of Vettes/etc.).............................pg.73

PTSD/Rant/Encouraging Members/Back on Track....................pg.74-76

SOLD '34 Truck/New grills/engine harness...P/B conversion......pg.76-77

P/B conversion/TH400 Re-wired................................... ..........pg. 78

Speedometer glitch-repair/cooling fan delay-relay(s) upgraded...pg. 79

New CAI Plenum/New-larger steering wheel.............................pg. 79

CAI and sidepipes............................... ..................................pg. 80

Steering wheel/sidepipe install/CAI..................................... ....pg. 81-83

Distributor problems........AGAIN................... .........................pg. 84

Distributor electric parts rebuild................................. .............pg.85

Rebuilt distributor installation/timing.................................. ...pg. 86-87

Upgrade to electric fuel pump.................................... ............pg. 87

Chrome FRONT Bumper Conversion/Click here for the condensed shortcut: https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1590451458 ...pg. 88-93

Conversion Discussions/Cutting Fiberglass Grill Off.............pg. 93-95

Two Year Review of the Build................................... ........pg. 96

Chrome REAR Bumper Conversion/Click here for the condensed shortcut: https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1590630203.......pg.97

More useful advice about fiberglass replacement..................pg.98-104

Motorcycle Discussions (while waiting for parts to be delivered)...pg. 105-106

Enlarging Cargo/Trunk.......pg.107-109
(click here for condensed Shortcut): https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1590742891

More Chrome Front Bumper Modifications........................... ...... pg. 110-111

Fuel Tank Custom Modification/Click here for condensed Shortcut...........https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1590803576 ...pg. 112-116

Tail light Clip Conversion.............................. ......................pg. 116-118

PTSD Chit Chat.................................... .......................................p g. 118-127

More Tail light Clip Conversion.............................. ........................pg. 128-130

More Enlarging Cargo/Trunk Area.................................... ..............pg. 131-135

More Tail Light Clip Conversion.............................. .......................pg. 136-137

Deck Lid Restoration............................. ........................................ pg. 137-139

Body Lift/Body Mounts & Reinforcement Repair/Replacing Front Crossmember and Braces........pg. 140-145
(for shortcut clik on the link to the right): https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1591645717

Humorous Story About Visit to V.A. Hospital..............(Click on quick-link https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...post1591683265) ......................pg. 143

Fabricate Support for oversize Radiator...............................p g. 146

Driver-side Fender Support Repair.................................. ....pg. 147

Test-Fitting Front and Rear Bumpers................................. ...pg. 149

Shimming Body Mounts for Door Gaps.................................pg. 150

Family Illness................................. .................................pg. 151

Family Tragedy................................. ...............................pg. 153-157

Emergency Sale of our house/packing to move away............pg. 158-160

More Tragedy................................. .................................pg. 161-162

Great Flood of 2016.................................... .....................pg. 163

Moving to In-law's during the Flood................................... .pg. 168-169

Trip to New Orleans and to Car Show..................................pg . 170-171

Fuel tank testing and fitting under car.................................pg.1 72-174

Support for Tank fabbing and fitting................................. ...pg. 175

Replacing rotted rear Cross member.................................. ..pg.176-177

More tank fitting with new crossmember............................. ..pg. 178-179

In-laws are united in Heaven.................................. .............pg.180

Moving to new home/new garage for Vette............................pg. 181

Moving Vette to new home/New garage & boxes....................pg.182-184

Repairing Rag-joint/Chit-Chat/New Sand Blasting Cabinet........pg. 185-186

Moving equipment into new garage/re-installing side pipes......pg. 187-188

Garage A.C./Insulation/new pegboard walls...........................pg. 189-190

Roadtrip (less Vette) to California.............................. ...........pg. 190-191

Hoist for hardtop added to garage.................................. .......pg. 192

Loading pegboard walls with Car/motorcycle parts...................pg. 193-194

Studying front Clip/work on Tail Clip/Repair cracked door jamb..pg. 195-196

Bonding exhaust panel to body/Fitting rear chrome bumpers.....pg. 196-199

4 year Review of work done so far..................................... .....pg. 200

Forum Chit-Chat with friends................................. .................pg. 201-203

Lowering garage onto slab after removing sub-floor...................pg.203-204

Painting garage floor/Bolting garage to slab..............................pg. 204-206

My Son's Memorial Day/Me learning to use a Wheelchair!............pg. 207

Forum Chit-Chat about Life.................................... ..................pg. 207-208

Repairing rubber fuel lines in engine bay...................................pg . 208-209

Forum Chit-Chat/Learning to use wheelchair in garage................pg. 209-210

Snow Storm of 2017/Forum Chit-Chat/Christmas 2017................pg. 211-216

Can't walk/Spine Surgery/Recovery/Chit-Chat............................pg. 214-216

First day on project since Surgery................................. ............pg. 216

Exhaust panel fitting/Finishing with body filler.............................pg.21 6-220

Door Gaps/Exhaust panel/Door Gaps.................................... ......pg.220-222

Garage Addition/Forum Chit-Chat/Garage addition/Door Gaps.......pg. 222-227

Deck lid/hinges/body gap repairs................................. ..............pg.227-232

Fitting rear bumpers to "new" tail light clip..................................pg . 232

Installing steel drain tubes under the deck...................................p g. 233

Leveling gas door with top of deck.................................... ..........pg. 233-234

Cutting new offset holes/installing rear marker lights.....................pg. 235

PTSD causing problems AGAIN................................... .................pg. 235-236





(to be continued.......if God says the same!)

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Old 09-10-2013, 07:54 AM
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Hi dg,
Welcome!
Rescuing a 68 is a good thing!
BUT, what you're suggesting is very difficult and takes a lot of experience, hundreds and hundreds of hours of work, and considerable $$$, to accomplish.
If in fact, you want to have a car with chrome front and rear bumpers, I believe you'd be much wiser to find one that presently has them.
The links you posted, while interesting, don't show what's involved in accomplishing what you've suggested.
Look for a 71-72 that's a complete but needy car instead.
Regards,
Alan

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Old 09-10-2013, 08:05 AM
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Order the 1968 assembly instruction manual (AIM) and take a look at how the clips were installed at the factory. At the least, that will give you an idea of where you are wanting to go.

Before you get too far along, be aware the swap back to chrome is going to be expensive.

Good luck.


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Old 09-10-2013, 02:50 PM
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I hope you have a cheap donor car ready to use, and are getting the mutant for next to nothing. There are an awful lot of parts involved in this, and a lot of time. Why would you want to do this instead of buying a car that is already correct? I hope it isn't to save money...
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Old 09-10-2013, 05:45 PM
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Thanks for the info Men.....I like doing/learning......

(bought some tubing/built a Harley frame--made it look like a 1970s SuperGlide with a shovelhead engine)

(took my D/D work truck apart---put a '34 pickup body on it/I rebuilt a 350SBC/700R4 with the help of a $30 engine rebuild manual & a $30 xmsn repair manual---LOL)

I always, since a kid, wanted a convertible Corvette with "those shiny bumpers" (had a graduation new '69 Camaro 'vert--got stupiEd and sold it in '84)

I'm still waiting for the owner to call me about buying me the Vette....I'm 2nd in line---the purchaser ahead of me is having trouble coming up with $4,000

But since I can "taste it"---I want to start learning the steps now on replacing the caps...

if this deal falls thru for me---I'll do what you guys suggest and find one that needs less body work for a few $,$$$ more so I can focus on the mechanical stuff.

Plus.................I'm hard-headed!

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Old 09-10-2013, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by doorgunner View Post
Thanks for the info Men.....I like doing/learning......

...

Plus.................I'm hard-headed!
Nuttin' wrong with that unless you're on a tight budget for time, space, and money, or "all of the above".

Alan makes a good suggestion by locating a little later chrome bumper car that needs some lovin' and wrestle with that. Unless you must have the factory computer controls, the later suspension pieces, interior, and the mixed registration, I bet you could modify to your hearts content on a 70-72 model that's waiting for a guy like you to come and rescue it.

Good luck and keep us posted.

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Old 09-11-2013, 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Dustup7T2 View Post
Nuttin' wrong with that unless you're on a tight budget for time, space, and money, or "all of the above".

Alan makes a good suggestion by locating a little later chrome bumper car that needs some lovin' and wrestle with that. Unless you must have the factory computer controls, the later suspension pieces, interior, and the mixed registration, I bet you could modify to your hearts content on a 70-72 model that's waiting for a guy like you to come and rescue it.

Good luck and keep us posted.
If the current possible? deal doesn't work out....I'd be happy with a '68-'73 convertible....NO ENGINE/TRANS/NECESSARY....just a decent body/rolling chassis.....I'll supply the engine/trans/even the carpet/guages/etc. if necessary....that's what I did to my '34 pickup....LOL

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Old 09-13-2013, 09:18 AM
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I was finally able to end the game of "phone/e-mail-tag" with the guy selling the hardtop...I'll meet with him this weekend while he's got some "home-time" to look at the car/work out a deal.


EDIT: errrr....change of plans this afternoon/Friday.........the car isn't coming out of the tune-up shop until Monday...and the place is closed this weekend with the car locked inside the building.............RATTTTTTS!

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Old 09-15-2013, 01:14 AM
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Update: The owner e-mailed me today about seeing the car/test-drive/copy of title for my insurance company's approval..........hopefully on Monday......hopefully!!!
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Old 09-15-2013, 08:49 AM
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Male sure you know where to look for rust. If it has bad rust then you are looking at a bunch of time and money to make it safe before you even address the body work and any mechanical issues it will have.
Good luck!
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Old 09-15-2013, 10:38 AM
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Thanks for the advice.....I've been viewing threads here about frame repair....

Even though I could handle the work....I'm really looking for something with minor frame problems because I still have a few things to wrap up on my '34pickup(work-truck/streetrod....LOL)







sorry about the f-f-f-ford body....but the '93 chevy drivetrain oughta cancel that out.

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Old 09-16-2013, 09:26 AM
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Well.........................deal fell thru on the car I was looking at.......

time to visit the F/S Forum............................
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Old 09-17-2013, 08:21 AM
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I thought that since I've gotten so much good info from you guys......I may as well go to the Sale Forum.

On a set income & time to spare (God willing!) I need a car that I can work on as the monthly checks come in as I will be selling my (eyes tearing-up a little) '74/'84/'94/'04 custom Harley.

I'm not an OEM freak (meant in a respectful way)....I want a vehicle that is dependable, but could use some freshening-up.

I've spent about 20 hours reviewing repair/maintenace threads to have some knowledge of keeping the car in good shape.

Anybody got other questions that a rookie should ask (keep in mind that I won't re-sell or "show" the car)....?

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Old 09-17-2013, 09:35 AM
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In the long run, I think you will be very happy this first deal fell through. Now you have a chance to step back and look at what's available. Here's a "must read" post when looking for your first C3. The pictures are detailed and give you some ideas on what to look for.
http://forums.corvetteforum.com/c3-g...-corvette.html
Good luck on your search.
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Old 09-17-2013, 11:23 AM
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so are we going to do the run? lol
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Old 09-17-2013, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by harleyclassic View Post
In the long run, I think you will be very happy this first deal fell through. Now you have a chance to step back and look at what's available. Here's a "must read" post when looking for your first C3. The pictures are detailed and give you some ideas on what to look for.
http://forums.corvetteforum.com/c3-g...-corvette.html
Good luck on your search.
Thanks H/C...I read the whole thang...I don't mind doing repairs.....just don't want the car "flexing" on the road....LOL.

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Old 09-17-2013, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by 1977L48 View Post
so are we going to do the run? lol
I still sorting out the "ifs" in my wittle bwain......

My classic truck insurance doesn't allow non-listed drivers....

I'd rather take the '34 just for the fun of it even though your offer is outrageous!

Now.......ther's still a Shotgun slot!

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Old 09-17-2013, 11:41 AM
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we could take my 77, when my buddy went to buy his 77 L82 in anchorage we took my LS4 74 monte carlo, we almost made it home when his w/p belt broke, I pushed him 100 miles with my monte carlo, it was a blast! my vette gets 25mpg but its no thrills, no power steering, manual clutch, no A/C, no cruse control, but in august I had just got back from a trip in it that I ended up putting 4k miles on it in 6 weeks, so it will get us there and back!
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Old 09-17-2013, 11:43 AM
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I am confused.....hahaha
You say you can't afford the fuel for the truck but I almost would guarantee it would be less than the 36.
Good luck! Take 1977L48's offer and go get the car because I have been really tempted to buy it myself. :-)
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Old 09-17-2013, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by 1977L48 View Post
we could take my 77, when my buddy went to buy his 77 L82 in anchorage we took my LS4 74 monte carlo, we almost made it home when his w/p belt broke, I pushed him 100 miles with my monte carlo, it was a blast! my vette gets 25mpg but its no thrills, no power steering, manual clutch, no A/C, no cruse control, but in august I had just got back from a trip in it that I ended up putting 4k miles on it in 6 weeks, so it will get us there and back!
Now that's an idea......hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm....
I could rent a trailer up there and H-h-h-h-aul the car back with the '34....but what kind of fun/challenge would that be ( you're dealing with a fool that had to throw wrenches out of his helicopter at the V.C/N.V.A. because his Guvment wouldn't supply him with enuff ammo or spare machine gun barrels )

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