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I'm getting close to finishing my 68. It's been painted for about a year, and still haven't managed to get it done. A lot of my problems stem from the lack of quality replacement parts. You can get all kinds of parts, but few quality ones. Wheel opening moldings that take hours each to install because of poor fit, lousy fitting rocker moldings, all kinds of issues. My latest is window felts, fuzzies, or whatever you may want to call them. I bought a set from Ames, called Top Cat Whiskers. These were horrible. next up, a set of PUI " correct" window felts. They were better than the Top Cat ones, but still don't make the cut. You can buy a set from every vendor, and spend lots of $$$, but still come up with nothing. Does ANYBODY make these that you would be proud to put on your dream car? What do the concourse restorers do with all these repop parts? I'm just doing a high end driver restoration, and these parts aren't cutting it. I have a pile of parts that I refuse to use due to poor fitment, or overall quality. It's so bad, that after this, I'll never restore another car to it's original condition. I have a car with a stellar paint job, that I can't seem to find parts good enough to finish it. It's not the money, I'll pay whatever it takes, but I want quality. I managed to get the other stuff to work as good as it can, but the window felts are killing me. Any advice would be appreciated.
 

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Hi mainegoat68, sorry to hear your having issues locating good quality restoration parts, but, that seems to go with a lot of aftermarket parts, I’m not a pro at auto body repair work by any means but over the years I enjoy doing body work and got certified in auto painting etc, etc and as any aftermarket part seems to be needing some sort of adjustment here snd there, unless it is a OEM part and then some adjustment is needed. Try owning a 1973 Olds 442 or a 1973 Pontiac Lemans Sport with the GTO Options, there isn’t jack out there for those models as well, a guy needs his own big $$$ metal fab shop or one hell of a bank roll to have parts fab for those cars, I love owning cars that you just don’t see or very few of them out there, I have no advance other than I hope you find what your looking for, I too sit back and these high end restores and wish I was able to to that. Best wishes
 

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Sorry to hear about your parts problem, it can be hit or miss finding quality parts. I have a 68 also and am located is Lubec Maine. I would be ingested in knowing if you did all your own body work. the reason I ask is I will be looking to find a reputable shop in state. I have my drivetrain pretty much done and the next bis step will be the body work. All the best luck with your project, I would love to see some pictures even if it's not finished.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
dd68, I bought Ames best and it was bad. I'll look at inline tube.
Cafr, I've never even seem a 73 in person, though I did work on a 73 442 many years ago. Dean, I love Lubec. One of my favorite stops when traveling. I did all the metal work, and sent it out to be finished. The guy is good, but I had to wait 2 years to get in. I'll do some more research. I guess I'm just too fussy. I just believe that when someone states that " it's just like the factory made oem ones" ,they should be. If they said "it's as close as we can get", at least they'd be telling the truth.
 

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Hi mainegoat, the 1973 GTOs are pretty rare, referred to as the unicorn of the GTO family. The 73s was one of if not the loswest production numbers built, and one of the lowest selling numbers of all GTOs. I had one before I had my license, I bought from my brother before he left across seas during one of our Nations military conflicts back in the 80s but was short lived due to a horrible Step Dad, which he had towed and was never seen again.
 

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I had the same problem restoring my 1980 GMC Jimmy, everything made in China and all of it was junk.
I have to slam the doors as hard as I can to get them to close, I wish I hadn't torn out the original rubber for paint.
Mirrors, handles, bezels you name it all 100% junk.
I learned my lesson and saved and reconditioned everything I could on my GTO.
The rear tail light lense repops for the '67 are all made by the same Chinese factory, 100% pure junk and the chrome trim isn't recessed or deburred and will slice your fingers like a razor when you go to wipe them after washing.
I sent them back and installed the originals, cracked is better than dangerous.
:/
 

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Hi. Regarding your message, I have taken the long road as well trying to get the right repops. They essentially don't exist. Some do for the interior side, but you cant beat NOS. That is what I always search for. If you are interested, I currently have a pair of NOS outer window felts for the doors. I bought them for my 69, but forgot about the window vents on a 68, which make them shorter for a 68.

If you would like to buy them, let me know. I currently have them listed on ebay.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I ended up buying parrella's set for the doors, at least I'll have a set of OEM ones there. repops in the rear for now. I'll keep an eye on ebay.
 

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I ordered felts from Ames. They call them "Glass Channel Weatherstrips". First set was PUI brand. They list them as (AP) for "After Product". Part number F230A for convertible. They were not very good. The stainless was a wide flat surface that partially covers some of the painted surface of the body. The originals had a rolled style stainless bead with a rubber flap that covered the painted edge of the body. The PUI part is especially bad for convertibles since it doesn't fit inside the rolled edge of the convertible pinched moldings. :(

Ames has another part available which they say is more correct. F230C. Its "Repops" brand. It was very good quality. They appeared to be an exact match to my originals...correct stainless bead, plastic guide tab and the little rubber flap to cover the painted edge. Very happy with these parts for my 1968 GTO convertible.

Here are some pics.


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