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Model  : 1968 SS Camaro
Owner: Jim Economou
Restored by : Nick at NCS


For years now Jimmy from Dart Automotive has always been serious about performance. He recently acquired a 1968 Camaro and has some big plans for this car which includes a 540 cubic inch 10/71 blown injected engine. I grew up with Jim and we go back a fair way. Primary school was when I first met Jimmy and from back then we spoke about fast cars.

After purchasing the vehicle Jim commissioned a profesional to sort out the body. After a full strip and bead blast he sent him the car. Due to a communication breakdown the job was not to Jimís satisfaction. This annoyed him tremendously as Jim does not do things half hearted and does not want to muck around. Jim then phoned me and asked if I was willing to take the job on. Since we are old friends it took me 5 seconds to think about it.

The car was towed to the workshop and Adam started to undo the previous repairs. A new set of quarter and beaver panels were ordered. Adam got to work by unpicking the old panels and stitching in the new ones. The panels were spot welded in the correct places and then smoothed over to a point were the tubs can now be finished.

The car is now off to the tub shop and it will return this week. Stay tuned for updates on this one.

 


27th November 2006

It has definitely been a while between drinks, but the Camaro came back to us some time back for getting that big coupe body ironed out for its new colour coats.

After a new beaver panel and quarter panels were grafted on, Ken at Cobracraft finished off the boot area and lower floor pans with a structural bracing kit to absorb the massive twist from the big blown 540 Merlin engine. These areas will be blacked out and stone guarded, as this car will see the streets quite often around Sydney. The emphasis is on cruising with attitude.

A huge task we accomplished recently was trimming the bonnet for the blower to peek its head through. This also required Adam to painfully stitch together a tube bar frame support around the hole to strengthen this area. Now that a majority of the bonnet is in the bin this was a necessity and turned out nice and neat.

Also some pin holing of the floor pans was present, so Adam fired up his plasma-cutter and sent the offending areas to the rubbish bin. They look OEM in appearance and will be treated to a rust protection coating and sealed with a heat insulation used worldwide known as DYNAMAT. Benefits of this aluminium flexible medium is heat absorption, sound deadening and a cool look as well. Noise is also kept to a minimum.

The body received 4 coats of epoxy primer which was sanded off mostly, leaving a thin layer behind. Small imperfections were addressed and the car was rolled into the oven once more and 4 coats of grey tinted hi-fill was applied.

Adam spent some time lining up these large panels as best to his ability, so all body style lines turn out nice and bold. The bonnet was paint stripped today, and that will also be epoxy/hifill primed also. These layers are crucial to the camaro, as the body must turn out better than new condition.

As the photos entail Jim has selected a nice clean shade of silver known as Titanium silver from the BMW colour charts. After the paint has been laid down, the coupe will receive the factory satin black skunk stripes down the centre.

These stripes are now supplied in decal form and can be applied and sprayed immediately, eliminating timely measuring and guess work. Plus they will really contrast on the sparkling new silver paint.

The finishing touches visually will be a custom made stainless steel dual exhaust system, MASSIVE rear 22 inch rear wheels, and 20 inch fronts brings this 68 model into the new millennium. It will be best of old school meets the new era school = cool in my opinion. She will definitely be show with go. Injected blown has been given the nod.

Adam must get a plug here for all his hard work to date, and Ken from Cobracraft for virtually re-designing the whole rear of the car around the massive rims. Also Jimmys crew for all the hours spent on engine dummying for bonnet clearances and other major areas underneath which wont be seen. Rome wasnít built in a day, and we certainly will endeavor to give Jimmy back his coupe just in time for Christmas.

Stay tuned trendsetters
More to come Nick.