buying 68 tempest help with project - Pontiac GTO Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
 
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buying 68 tempest help with project

hi im new here comming over from ls1tech ( my dd is a camaro ss) and im looking at getting a 68 tempest, thing is id love a gto judge but there way to expensive. so heres pics and a vid of the tempest, 400 small block with th400 trans, what are the chances i could turn this into a 69 gto judge clone? all i know is ls1 stuff this is all new to me, my thoughts base on the pictures and the picture of what im trying to clone it to, i would need the judge hidden headlight front end, carosel red paint, judge spoiler, chrome trim, judge rear bumper, judge hood with tach and of course the badges. normally im against this type of thing but i want a judge real bad. and the guy wants it for a steal i cant turn it down. thanks for your input im hoping i can make this work.

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 11:40 AM
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Well ok - welcome,

First things first - someone else is bound to say it so I'll get this out of the way Please don't EVER refer to a real Pontiac engine as either "big block" or "small block" --- there's no such thing. All Pontiac engine blocks from the "little" 326 up through the "mighty" 455 are all exactly the same size. Sit a 455 on your garage floor next to a 326 and the only way you'll be able to tell which is which will be by reading and interpreting the various codes stamped into the metal.

You get one free pass because you're a new ls guy and didn't know any better There are other Pontiac die hards out there who wouldn't be so kind

On building a Judge clone. I'm a big fan of "it's your money, spend it how you like". You've got one big problem starting with a 68: The Judge started in 69, not 68, and visually there are some significant differences some of which might be harder to deal with than others. The biggest is probably the doors. 68 was the last year for vent windows - they were gone, replaced by one-piece door glass, in 69. Whether or not 68 doors can be outfitted with 69 internals and glass, I don't know for sure, but that will probably be expensive. Another major difference is the rear bumper, taillights, and tail panel where the taillights mount. All of those items are expensive and also I think only available as reproduction pieces.
Another difference is the dash/dash pad - completely different between 68 and 69, as is the console and shifter if it's an automatic.

Some of the things you mentioned, like the spoiler and front end are actually pretty easy. Not all Judges had hideaway headlights - in fact most probably didn't. So you'd be cool there -- but you'd need the 69 grilles which were different from 68. Also the lower valance and parking/side lights are different between 68 and 69. You'd need to lose the Pontiac emblem on the nose of the Endura bumper, that was another 68-only feature.
Most of the Judge 'visuals' needed to clone a 69 GTO into a 69 Judge are readily available because that's a popular thing to do. Making a 68 GTO/Lemans look like a 69 GTO is where all the hard part is. A lot of the work to make this Lemans look like a 68 GTO has already been done, so you're in luck there. It really would depend on how accurate/convincing you wanted to be.

There's another option: Take the car as is (which looks very nice in the photos by the way), and instead sink all the clone money into building a very serious stroker motor out of the 400 that's in it. You'll have a 'sleeper' that will flat out MURDER any stock Judge ever built

Your choice - just have fun with it.

Bear

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
 
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my plan was exterior wise to look like a judge, interior wise i dont care if it has the judge interior, and the engine bay, already had non judge plans. so i guess correcting my post above i want to make it look like a judge on the outside and thats it. i noticed the difference in the windows and im not to worried about it. if most judges didnt have the hidden headlights then ill keep the front end. i did notice the pontiac in the front grill and i was going to buy gto badges for that, and the chrome gto fender badges as well. so what im seeing, for my goals at least, ill be able to come close to the judge in the photo minus the interior and the windows/hidden headlights. am i right?
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 12:20 PM
 
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with Bear, the money to make it a respectable "judge" clone will never be recovered, now a 68' GTO clone is doable for a couple grand (tailpanel/lights/welding/badges) less the new paint which could be anywhere from 4-10k if the body is as solid as it looks. I'm with bear on "your car, your money" but i am all for seeing the Tempest/LeMans nameplate being kept alive as so many have been cloned and butchered as parts cars for Goats, especially when they are as intact as yours seems to be. Take a look at some of the ones on here being restored, you will see dozens of nice GTO's at show but a sweet LeMans or Tempest always turns heads and gets comments because they have become rare due to attrition. I was gonna clone mine and decided against it and i am glad i did i know i will never have another just like it pull up next to me....welcome to the reservation and congratulations on the nice find....

heres my Tempest Custom

1966 Tempest pictures by instg8ter - Photobucket

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 02:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usnfenix View Post
my plan was exterior wise to look like a judge, interior wise i dont care if it has the judge interior, and the engine bay, already had non judge plans. so i guess correcting my post above i want to make it look like a judge on the outside and thats it. i noticed the difference in the windows and im not to worried about it. if most judges didnt have the hidden headlights then ill keep the front end. i did notice the pontiac in the front grill and i was going to buy gto badges for that, and the chrome gto fender badges as well. so what im seeing, for my goals at least, ill be able to come close to the judge in the photo minus the interior and the windows/hidden headlights. am i right?
Don't forget the rear bumper, tailllights, tail panel.... but yeah, if you aren't worried about the vent windows or the interior, that would get you close.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 05:02 PM
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Just slap a wing on the back, a hood tack, and Judge badges and stripes and call it a day.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 05:48 PM
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I would recommend switching to 69 doors without the wing windows, but your car is a post hardtop, another minus as they never made a post Judge.....but the Judge prototype, the ET, was a post. That's what I would clone, then you still get to put on the wings and stripes and it's something unique and different and probably worth more in the long run than a badly cloned Judge. And you can probably do it cheaper because you won't have to change as much.

Just my 2 cents. I'd actually love to build that car myself if I had the time and money.

In the long run, if you really want a 69 Judge clone, it would be better to just trade or sell what you've got for a solid 69 than to change soooooo much.

edit: Oh, and welcome to the forum!
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 05:59 PM
 
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GREAT IDEA!!! Alky....love the ET's, bare bones as the Judge started out to be and it was based on the 68' post.


"In response to the success of the Road Runner and other low cost alternatives to Pontiac's original musclecar the GTO, the division started work on an alternative low dollar performance car. By the time everyone had their say, the ET (for elapsed time, not extra-terrestrial) had become an option on top of the cost of a GTO. According to legend John Delorean was impressed with the car when he saw it but thought the name ET wasn't catchy enough. Remembering the popularity of the Laugh-In show he suggested The Judge.

The prototype was painted Carousel Red, a standard Firebird color. Sharp eyed Chevrolet fans will recognize it as Hugger Orange. It included a stripe based on those that Pontiac performance dealer Royal Bobcat had been putting on their modified cars. The L74 Ram Air motor, Hurst T-handle shifter, blackwall G70 x 14 tires, "dechromed" (no trim ring) Rally II wheels, blacked out grill, and decals with The Judge and a gavel completed the conversion. "

took a ton of looking but heres a pic of the ET prototype.....would be a very cool car to clone and like alky said your most of the way there as it was based on your car. Also notice the two hood bumps...tach and passengers side was the cowl induction scoop

http://carblackblog.blogspot.com/200...ontiac-et.html

or you could do a 68' Royal Bobcat...

http://www.streetlegaltv.com/news/mu...gto-ram-air-v/

Last edited by Instg8ter; 11-10-2011 at 06:33 PM.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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so after reading replys i think im going to shoot for something like the pic below. havent decided if im going to make it a gto and leave it there like in this picture, or later on make it a black judge. like i said im not worried with cloning the interior, and i think putting a judge spoiler on it with chrome trim and badges and maybe the hidden headlights grille and tach hood, will get me a judge clone im happy with. first up will be paint tho that color has got to go.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2011, 07:03 PM
 
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A couple of things that were not mentioned. The side marker lights on a 69 are GTO badge shaped instead of the Pontiac symbol. If you switch the rear bumper and tail lights to a 69, you will have to change the deck lid to make it look right, and those are hard to find and real pricey.
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  Pontiac GTO Forum > The 1964-1974 Pontiac Tempest, Lemans & GTO > 1964-1974 Tempest, LeMans & GTO Projects, Barn Finds & Restoration Discussions

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