My 69 gto was a standard hard top coupe. The PO did a strange restoration too it that caught my eye and got me into Pontiacs. Currently the car is in the shop getting some work done. The owner of the shop offered a in my opinion a very fair deal for paint and decals to make the car a royal bob cat clone. I like the idea but I am unsure about having to say clone everytime someone asks about the car. Anyways you all seem knowledgeable so share some with me on this.
It's all in what you want. That '65 Royal Bobcat Jim Wangers had and sold was a clone. It's all in what you want.
IMO: My Judge is a re-creation. I did it right though, its no cheap clone. I tore it apart and rebuilt it from the ground up. I had friends who have Judges help me. The graphics were measured and placed precisely as OEM. All parts non Judge were replaced with Judge parts. I used (well my buddy) used many concours pictures paying close attention to detail and the car was reassembled exactly like one. Color matches used. The car was very close except the manifolds were not Ram Air. It drove me berserk, I wanted a 100% match. I finally got them in. The Trans was rebuilt and the valve body specked. The only thing not correct is the block, however there are performance parts added when it was raced, the cam is of R/A standard. The power is virtually identical to my buddy's 1969 Judge. When I pulled the motor I was going to take it RaceKrafters they are local, they are in HPP all the time. I was going to have them re-rebuild the block as close as possible to a YZ. When we opened the engine up it was immaculate, looked new. My buddy built Ponchos and knows these motors, he put a less than 20K mile estimate on the motor. Why spend $$$$$ rebuilding it when it had upgrades and looked spotless?? I decided I will use the money elsewhere. We put the motor back together and reinstalled it. Suspension is not as Judge ...... big deal.
The P14 Palladium is the correct code.
I wanted a Judge in the worst way. Both times I looked... prices for what I wanted were 50kish. Would I use a 50K car as a driver? NO way. I wanted a driver. So..... for 1/2 the cost of what I wanted, I got a PHS GTO tore it apart and built it from the ground up as a Judge. NO ONE can tell the difference. It's a perfect match and in performance.
The 20K I saved? I purchased my wife a matching # 2002 WS.6.
I see clones and shake my head. MOST stop short. They apply graphics and say Judge. I laid out a game plan and built it. I saved a lot doing it, its identical to one and I DRIVE it and enjoy it. For many letting it sit in a garage and dusting it with bragging rights is fine, drive it? NO WAY... I have 100% of the fun at between 1/2-2/3 rd the cost....... I did this knowing what I was doing... took me 4 years in the off seasons but its done right or I'd not have done it.
To Clone or not to Clone..... IMO: if you do it....... do it right. You'll be glad ya did.