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Old 01-01-2013, 10:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Reviving my 68.....20 years later.

Thought I'd share my little project with everybody. It's a 68 Tempest Custom. I was just finishing high school when I bought it for $400 in 1981, it was dark green, stock and pretty plain looking. Yeah, I'm lucky enough to still own my very first car.

I drove it every summer and worked on it every winter for about 12 years. Just about the time I got it looking right and running really good my 3rd child was born. I no longer had the time, or the money for it so I parked it in the garage .....for the last 20 years

If you've never done it you have no idea how many indignities a car will suffer over the span of 2 decades when you park it in your regularly used 2 1/2 car garage. Things get stacked on it, leaned against it, spilled or splashed on it and the dust piles up doing all manner of horrible things to your paint.

For the first few years I was pretty good about starting it up and driving down the driveway once a month or so. But eventually the tires developed slow leaks, the battery got worse and worse and it all became something of a hassle. Soooo...it hadn't even been started for at least 15 of those years.

In the fall of 2011 I'd finally had enough of my once proud car mocking me every time I walked past and decided it was high time I brought the old girl back to life.

First picture is about what it looked like when I parked it. Second one was taken in 2011.
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Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-tempest.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2250.jpg  
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:12 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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looks like a great project, glad you finally got back to it! Good luck and post pics!!
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:00 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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A few pix

I didn't think to start snapping pix until after the front clip was off. Frame was stripped clean from the firewall out, epoxy primed and painted. I replaced all the brake lines and relocated the proportioning valve to the top of the frame. In the stock position it was about 1/64" away from the header. After a few good runs down the boulevard the brake fluid would nearly boil, causing more than a few white knuckled moments when I tried to slow it down.
Now that I'm older and more mature I've decided that good brakes are important and I think this change will make a huge difference.
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Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2066.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2196.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2202.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2213.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2286.jpg  

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Old 01-02-2013, 02:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Awesome - please keep the photos coming, and good luck.

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Old 01-02-2013, 07:59 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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No Goat,
I think it's great that you still have your first car,
and greater that you're going to bring it back to it's glory,
and greater still that it hasn't been converted into a GTO.
I love seeing the original cars stay that way, and kept in
good condition.
Looking forward to watching the progress!
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Almost forgot,
my brother's first car was a 69 LeMans convert, bought about the same time, I think it was 1980, for $150. It had 144,000 miles on it, funny how you remember these things 32 years later..(the guy was firm on his price!) Had a 350 in it, he was taking automotive in high school, had a valve job done on it for about $50, and man, did that sucker move out when he got it back!
We had tons of fun with that car, cruising around Hampton Beach in NH, back when we were kids.
He had it about 3 or 4 years, til he sat down in the drivers seat, and the frame went south. I bought my 67 GTO convert about a year after that..I sold mine after a year or two. If we had only known......
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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"If we had only known"......INDEED. My car had A/C when I bought it...wish I had saved all the pieces if for no other reason than current resale/trade value. It had the reverb stereo too.
There was a pretty good street racing scene in my area back then and I had my eye on the top spot...not to mention visions of pulling the front wheels on a good launch. With those goals in mind every bit of the AC system got pulled out and thrown away to save weight. I also pulled off the steel hood and fenders and hung fiberglass, which is still on it. I still have my steel fenders up in the attic, the hood is another story for another post.
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:08 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Some more pictures

The first one is sort of an exploded view of the front clip, the frame and firewall are already done at this point.

Second pic, the fiberglass fenders and hood have been put back on to be repaired and fitted while the engine is off to the side being rebuilt. I was probably waiting to get my heads back at this point.

Third, heads are back and the engine is nearly finished. Fenders are back off to beef up the mounting ears where they mate to the firewall and to make it easier to drop the engine back in when it's done.

Pic 4 the engines ready to go.
Attached Thumbnails
Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2259.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2280.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2312.jpg   Reviving my 68.....20 years later.-img_2322.jpg  
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
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nice work NoGoat, i will have to get by and take a peek when i can get in the area. You will like the tri-Y headers when you have to mount them in the engine bay, my 4 pipes took me 5 hrs to install and still banged the frame and leaked.
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:26 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Yeah, these are a breeze to get in and out. I just take off the starter and oil filter housing and in they go. Only takes an hour.
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