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I know most muscle car guys prefer to keep their cars close to stock, maybe upgrade the driveline for more HP, but does anyone out there know if there are any customized (body modifications) GTO, or Lemans, out there? Besides the Monkee mobile, I know of a local one that was chopped by a famous NJ customizer back in the 70's. Any others? grill, tail light changes?
 

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I know most muscle car guys prefer to keep their cars close to stock, maybe upgrade the driveline for more HP, but does anyone out there know if there are any customized (body modifications) GTO, or Lemans, out there? Besides the Monkee mobile, I know of a local one that was chopped by a famous NJ customizer back in the 70's. Any others? grill, tail light changes?

Yeah, there was one Sheryl Crow had a famous shop customize for Lance Armstrong, the bicycle king. I know he doesn't have it any more but don't know where it is. Here's a link to the sale:

https://www.dailymail********/tvshowbiz/article-2575251/Lance-Armstrong-auctions-1970-classic-convertible-ex-girlfriend-Sheryl-Crow-gave-winning-Tour-France.html

Personally I consider LeMans's and Tempest's that become "GTO"'s basically as customized LeMans and Tempests although "clone" is a nice derogatory term>:)
 

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Yeah, a lot of you guys are gonna hate me. But the car I'm building, for a friend, was probably the most rotten out POS I've ever worked on. I think it was dredged out of the ocean. So not feeling guilty about what I do to it.
My background is more 40's and 50's cars, though I've done restorations on 30's to 60's cars, as well. But my passion is 50's style Kustom cars. That is, major body restyling, modification.
This GTO I'm doing, I've already replaced just about every panel on the body shell, on a rotisserie. The chassis, we discovered, was just as rotten as the body. I had Art Morrison bend me up some tubing and am assembling the frame now. It will incorporate all 1993 Corvette suspension. We will use the Vette's LT1 and 6 speed stick, as well. Possibly more of the Vette parts, as well, not decided on that.
It is possible that I may do some Vette styling changes on the GTO body, and probably the interior. I'm thinking about fabbing a Stinger type hood scoop and maybe use the 93 tail lights on it. Possibly thinner bumpers, and rolled pans, front and rear. Still in discussion with the owner about how far we will go. But I don't want to lose too much of the GTO styling, just do the Vette touches, and refine the shape a bit. Wondering if you guys are interested in a build thread on it.
 

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Yeah, a lot of you guys are gonna hate me. But the car I'm building, for a friend, was probably the most rotten out POS I've ever worked on. I think it was dredged out of the ocean. So not feeling guilty about what I do to it.
My background is more 40's and 50's cars, though I've done restorations on 30's to 60's cars, as well. But my passion is 50's style Kustom cars. That is, major body restyling, modification.
This GTO I'm doing, I've already replaced just about every panel on the body shell, on a rotisserie. The chassis, we discovered, was just as rotten as the body. I had Art Morrison bend me up some tubing and am assembling the frame now. It will incorporate all 1993 Corvette suspension. We will use the Vette's LT1 and 6 speed stick, as well. Possibly more of the Vette parts, as well, not decided on that.
It is possible that I may do some Vette styling changes on the GTO body, and probably the interior. I'm thinking about fabbing a Stinger type hood scoop and maybe use the 93 tail lights on it. Possibly thinner bumpers, and rolled pans, front and rear. Still in discussion with the owner about how far we will go. But I don't want to lose too much of the GTO styling, just do the Vette touches, and refine the shape a bit. Wondering if you guys are interested in a build thread on it.
I am onboard. Although I am one who does not appreciate LS engines, cloning, tributes, or the newest buzz word "recreations," I love customs/hot rods of the 40's, 50's, and early 60's. I am of the mindset that some cars have to be restored, some can be modified, and others if being saved from the scrap heap can get any treatment you see fit as long as you you don't try to portray the car as something it no longer is.

I think a top chop & laying back the front glass, if correctly proportioned, would be on my list, as well as lowering it. A few inches taken out of the beltline would most likely balance a top chop and lowering. Saw a '69 mustang this was done to and it was fantastic and bad-ass looking. I believe he had sectioned the wheel wells and raised them up to give it correct proportions as well rather, than drop them down disproportionate to the rest of the mods. I'd shave the door locks, but gotta have the factory chrome door handles to keep the 60's flavor. Shave the rain gutters. I would ditch all the lower body chrome and wheel well trim, but find/use something like a 1/2" chrome strip along the lower rocker panel to break the car's color with the black pavement defining a line between the two. The old style clear lens Lucas headlights to replace the T-3's. Bumpers could be left chrome, but "tightened" up for a better fit OR go fiberglass and mold in smooth and shoot with body color. Rims would have to be Pontiac poverty (dog dish) hub caps fitted to a 17"/18" steely (black) rim. White interior only. Color choice will make or break this car.

I don't think you can do a lot of mods like a '50's car without losing too much of the original car. You still want to have those identifiers that say it's a GTO and make it a GTO. You just have to mindful as to how you go about it................or you will be hated by the GTO community. LOL

Please, do post the project as it progresses and maybe even get a few opinions that might contribute to the build and shape its outcome. :thumbsup:
 

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butch em up !!

looks like a 68 n newer balancer hiding under the hood already ...

I just walk by the ls cars at the shows .... check out the bodys and interiors ... and move along

It just makes our originals worth a few bucks more cuz there will be 1 less real/restored original in the gene pool

I do like the dual reclining seats tho .....

Scott
 

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I know most muscle car guys prefer to keep their cars close to stock, maybe upgrade the driveline for more HP, but does anyone out there know if there are any customized (body modifications) GTO, or Lemans, out there? Besides the Monkee mobile, I know of a local one that was chopped by a famous NJ customizer back in the 70's. Any others? grill, tail light changes?

Yeah, there was one Sheryl Crow had a famous shop customize for Lance Armstrong, the bicycle king. I know he doesn't have it any more but don't know where it is. Here's a link to the sale:

https://www.dailymail********/tvshowbiz/article-2575251/Lance-Armstrong-auctions-1970-classic-convertible-ex-girlfriend-Sheryl-Crow-gave-winning-Tour-France.html

Personally I consider LeMans's and Tempest's that become "GTO"'s basically as customized LeMans and Tempests although "clone" is a nice derogatory term/images/GTOforum_2016/smilies/tango_face_devil.png
If I remember wasn't that a chip Foose car on overhauling ? Doug
 

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Discussion Starter #9
PontiacJim, just the kind of guy I hope to get some ideas from, and perhaps impress! While My shop focus is on 50's leadsleads, this build is going to be completely different. But still using the sheet metal fabrication skills, and eye for changes to make the car better looking. I enjoy a challenge, and often build very different types of cars for people. From a stock 36 Plymouth 4 door sedan, to a 2014 Malibu customized with Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Corvette pieces, with almost half the body hand made.
The idea is to use 50's customizing tricks, to update and modernize the looks of the 67. And bring in Vette influence. Not trying to retro style the car back to the 50's, or even 60's. Wheels/tires will have to be modern Vette stuff. To take advantage of all the suspension mods, and also, just to fit the larger rotors, and deep backspacing requirements. This will set the tone for the rest of the interior and exterior modifications. I know it's been done before with the mechanical aspects, but not so much with exterior styling. Somehow most builders think changing the exterior is blasphemy. I don't!
BTW, if you're really into the 50's leadsled stuff, I also transformed a 55 Chevy pickup truck, into THIS! (blue truck pic is not the truck we started with, it's an example of a stocker)
 

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"...just the kind of guy I hope to get some ideas from, and perhaps impress!..."


Yeah, it does sound like you are trying to impress us with your skills. :(

I'm NOT impressed !

If you not going to use Pontiac power, I think you should post this stuff on a Chevy forum. They might be more impressed.

This is my personal opinion only. I have no quarrel with anyone who has a different opinion.
 

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PontiacJim, just the kind of guy I hope to get some ideas from, and perhaps impress! While My shop focus is on 50's lead sleds, this build is going to be completely different. But still using the sheet metal fabrication skills, and eye for changes to make the car better looking. I enjoy a challenge, and often build very different types of cars for people. From a stock 36 Plymouth 4 door sedan, to a 2014 Malibu customized with Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Corvette pieces, with almost half the body hand made.
The idea is to use 50's customizing tricks, to update and modernize the looks of the 67. And bring in Vette influence. Not trying to retro style the car back to the 50's, or even 60's. Wheels/tires will have to be modern Vette stuff. To take advantage of all the suspension mods, and also, just to fit the larger rotors, and deep backspacing requirements. This will set the tone for the rest of the interior and exterior modifications. I know it's been done before with the mechanical aspects, but not so much with exterior styling. Somehow most builders think changing the exterior is blasphemy. I don't!
BTW, if you're really into the 50's leadsled stuff, I also transformed a 55 Chevy pickup truck, into THIS! (blue truck pic is not the truck we started with, it's an example of a stocker)
Whoa, pics #2-3 resemble the old Barris Rod&Custom truck! Very cool, indeed. Please do provide pics and details of your build. :smile3:

As for the suggestion you post it on the Chevy forum; naw, don't do that. If you post on any other forum, use the HAMB. I've been using it for 15 years and you're probably already there.

https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/account/
 

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PontiacJim, just the kind of guy I hope to get some ideas from, and perhaps impress! While My shop focus is on 50's leadsleads, this build is going to be completely different. But still using the sheet metal fabrication skills, and eye for changes to make the car better looking. I enjoy a challenge, and often build very different types of cars for people. From a stock 36 Plymouth 4 door sedan, to a 2014 Malibu customized with Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Corvette pieces, with almost half the body hand made.
The idea is to use 50's customizing tricks, to update and modernize the looks of the 67. And bring in Vette influence. Not trying to retro style the car back to the 50's, or even 60's. Wheels/tires will have to be modern Vette stuff. To take advantage of all the suspension mods, and also, just to fit the larger rotors, and deep backspacing requirements. This will set the tone for the rest of the interior and exterior modifications. I know it's been done before with the mechanical aspects, but not so much with exterior styling. Somehow most builders think changing the exterior is blasphemy. I don't!
BTW, if you're really into the 50's leadsled stuff, I also transformed a 55 Chevy pickup truck, into THIS! (blue truck pic is not the truck we started with, it's an example of a stocker)
Great looking truck and I know the work that goes into it. About 40 years ago, customizing was what I wanted to do, but coming from a small town in Connecticut there weren't shops doing this - everything that I knew of was on the West coast if you wanted to customize. Keep in mind back in the day we only had magazines and books to provide the info, not like the internet today or all these various car shows. Looking back, I had the know how, the vision, the passion, and basic skills. What I did not have and needed was a mentor. Almost moved to California chasing that dream, but the gas crisis and odd-even gas days and 10 gallon maximums squashed that along with the wife at the time got pregnant with out first child.
You have your dreams and life has it ways that don't always support your dreams. LOL

How can someone not love the customs by Barris, Winfield, Roth, or Harley Earl? I too am not a fan in that you are choosing a Chevy engine. I hate to see it used and like other members here when I go to a car show and see an LS, small or big block, in a GTO, I keep on walking and won't even check it out. I wouldn't own a Ferrari and pull the 12 cylinder in favor of an LS - even if it didn't run. No excuse not to keep a Ferrari a Ferrari. That's how many of us here feel because we grew up with them and understand them. If we wanted a Chevy engine, we would be Chevelle guys - and I have owned many Chevy cars/engines, as well as numerous other makes.

However, most of us will stand by the saying, "its your car and you can do what you want with it" even if we don't agree. There are many arguments for the use of an LS or LT engine, but they don't wash. Better gas mileage? Parts more plentiful? Any shop can work on them? More HP?

Most of our cars are hobby cars, not daily drivers. We may not get 26 MPG with a Pontiac, but you can get 20 MPG if built for it and I have had them. And what does MPG matter? If you can't afford the gas to begin with, then perhaps you should not own the car.

Parts for Pontiac engines are plentiful thanks to all the manufacturers that sell aftermarket pieces. You may not be able to go to Napa and order them for the next day, but you can get them. And, do you really need them the next day if the car is not a daily driver?

Any shop can work on the LS engine. True, but that tells me that you are not much of a mechanic and most of us enjoy working on our cars - its part of the hobby and part of the ownership. Working on our cars doesn't put us under the mercy of some dealership or garage that is going to hand up a minimum $500 and up bill of damages. Working on our cars also instills a sense of pride that goes along with the ownership. At car shows we can tell you all about the fine points of the mechanics of our vehicles rather than bringing our private dealership mechanic to explain to others what we have no clue about other than it runs really good.

Horsepower? Do some research and you will know that this is no problem when it comes to a Pontiac build. The limiting HP factor is determined by the square root of how deep your wallet goes. And most who do not understand a Pontiac engine look to the bragging rights of horsepower when the true Pontiac guy knows the number you should be bragging on is Torque. Those who build for horsepower may find their engine disappointing. Those who build for torque may find they need a revolving account with Goodyear so they can keep legal tires on their car.

This is not a bashing, so do not take it that way if by chance you do. You can go LT or LS because it is your car and your build. Many of us here would rather see, and convince you, to keep a Pontiac a real Pontiac by using Pontiac power.

If you go Chevy on the drivetrain, so be it. I still want to see that build as a guy who enjoys and appreciates customs, hot rods, rat-rods, stock, modified, resto-mods, and anything in between. It is a representation of the dream we all have in our minds of what the perfectly crafted car should be and look like. So dream on! :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
1968gto421, you are correct. The truck is an exact copy of the Barris "Kopper Kart". Right down to the correct looking 53 Corvette six cylinder engine, with 3 side draft carbs! We debuted it at the Detroit Autorama in 2008, and it's been in ALL the rod and Custom magazines.
PontiacJim; I agree with trying to keep the original heritage, if not the original engine in most cars. But it's not my car, either. I got a deal on the running and driving 93 Vette for my customer, for probably half the cost of rebuilding an old Pontiac engine. So we got the whole suspension upgrades, brakes, steering, engine, trans, seats (maybe) etc. I try to save my guys money whenever I can, and since the car was so bad, I knew he's spend a fortune on new sheet metal, and the frame. Plus the labor to put it all together. So he's happy for that trade-off of not having Poncho power.
I'll get my pics organized , and put it in the restoration/barn find forum? Is that the right place?
It will be a long range project ( due to the amount of work, plus his monthly budget!), so I'll be around asking questions for quite some time.
 

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Wow. Some of you guys are ADAMANT about purity.

CHOPOLDS, I like what you're doing, though I kind of agree that Chevy is kind of a slap in the face. I have a big block in there now, and can't wait to get rid of it. We've had the discussion in message about modernizing the interior, but I've even gone so far as to ponder saving up and sticking a Hellcrate engine in Lurlene. The problem is that even if she is just a production model GTO, she's still an actual GTO, and not a clone. I may have to restore the engine because the last guy threw a rod and damaged it, but it is salvageable and it is the Pontiac motor that came with it. The scorn from the purists would be intense.


But I like what you are doing. You're taking something bound for the scrap heap and revitalizing it. There's a beauty and a quality in that. I admire it.
 

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1968gto421, you are correct. The truck is an exact copy of the Barris "Kopper Kart". Right down to the correct looking 53 Corvette six cylinder engine, with 3 side draft carbs! We debuted it at the Detroit Autorama in 2008, and it's been in ALL the rod and Custom magazines.
PontiacJim; I agree with trying to keep the original heritage, if not the original engine in most cars. But it's not my car, either. I got a deal on the running and driving 93 Vette for my customer, for probably half the cost of rebuilding an old Pontiac engine. So we got the whole suspension upgrades, brakes, steering, engine, trans, seats (maybe) etc. I try to save my guys money whenever I can, and since the car was so bad, I knew he's spend a fortune on new sheet metal, and the frame. Plus the labor to put it all together. So he's happy for that trade-off of not having Poncho power.
I'll get my pics organized , and put it in the restoration/barn find forum? Is that the right place?
It will be a long range project ( due to the amount of work, plus his monthly budget!), so I'll be around asking questions for quite some time.

"I'll get my pics organized , and put it in the restoration/barn find forum? Is that the right place?"

PJ: Yep, that is correct. :thumbsup:
 

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How many points are deducted for putting a 5th generation LS2 into a 1st Generation??
Ooooooooh, man! You don't even want to know. :banghead:

From the Holy Book of Pontiac. Deut 22:5

"The Pontiac shall not be powered by that which pertaineth unto a Chevrolet, neither shall an LS engine be put on the frame rails of a Pontiac: for all that do so are abomination unto the Laws of the Muscle Car."

I guess you know where your muscle car soul is going. But there is still time to repent and make things right................its your choice. :yesnod:
 

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I've always idolized the subtle beauty this guy added to his '69. I see it as not over the top but simply adds to the original character and intent DeLorean had. European sports car style meets American muscle. I personally had sketched very similar and subtle body modifications to my goat a long time ago and plan on eventually play with subtle fender flares, modifying the front valance and adding skirts. I say, if it's not some extremely rare combination of options that Pontiac only produced 10 of making it well into the 6 figures once restored to original and it's just your everyday Lemans, Tempest or even GTO, do what makes you happy. People may cringe but in the end they will secretly say, "damn that's awesome!" though the old curmudgeons will never admit to it. What is it kids are saying now a days.... YOLO!!

JudgeMENTAL - Indy Street Rods & Classics

 
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