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Old 05-26-2017, 04:26 AM
manny z manny z is offline
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Default American Dream 1968 Charger

First and foremost I would like to say hello again. I cam on here a pretty long time ago posting a bit of info on my car. 1968 Dodge charger.

A little history first. My first mopar a 1968 dodge charger, that used to belong to my girlfriend, now wife when I was 17. I bought it off her dad when a drunk driver smashed into the drivers side 1/4 panel and trunk, and made a mess of it. It sat for a while like this until I asked my late father in law what he was doing with the car, he said YOU WANT TO BUY IT??!! So I got the car for $300 Granted this was back in 1984!! haha. I took the car home, got a 5 lb sledge, and went to town on the 1/4 to do the best I can to straighten it out.
Got it a little better, put a dummy tail light on it, to keep the police away, and that was my driver for my senior year of high school. The car started having running issues, so as a broke ass HS grad, it sat for the summer, until one day an older guy knocked on my door and asked what I was doing with it, cause he was interested in the front bumper. Short side of it, I parted the car to the shell sitting in front of my parents driveway, and I was $3600 richer!!
So I set out to find another 68 charger. Had some tips, a few dead ends, a couple of not selling the car, then my luck struck.
Mom asked me if I was still looking for a car like my old one, cause she told me she saw a gold one like mine, with two black stripes on the back of it. Of course I was thinking R/T !!! I went the location, nothing..

Looking in a different location from where she said she saw the car, I saw it!!!! A white 68, black vinyl top car, just like the one I parted out!!!!!
But this one had white interior, instead of black like my first. I saw the duel exh out of the back, so I gently opened the hood, and saw the distributor out front, BIG BLOCK CAR!! The car looked like it had been sitting there for years. I knocked on the door, no answer. For the next month and a half, I was knocking on the door, until one day an old lady in her 70s answered.

I asked her about the car, it had been in her car port for a little over 2 years. She and her recently passed away husband were the original owners. Bought the car at BUTLER CONTI DODGE in Nor Ca, SF BAY AREA. I asked her if she wanted to sell, she said gardener was interested, I made a offer of $1000 cash, she said yes!!!! Had a tow truck put on dollies due to 3 flat tires, and took it home, THAT DAY!! Put 4 used tires on it, flushed the MC and brake lines, new battery, ign parts, cleaned gas tank, fresh gas, fired right up!!!!!
This car was a 383 4 bbl, auto, console, AC, power disc brakes, duel exh, no chrome tips, white interior with tan accents, and carpet, white body, black vinyl top, manual windows. The car had 51,xxx original miles on it, never left the area where the owner lived.
In 1986 I joined the Army, and my charger sat in the parents garage for 11 years!!! With a badly smoking engine.

After a few different phases in what I wanted to do with the car, I was sold after seeing 2 cars that as of today, still has made my mind up on how I am going to build the car now. THE RED BRICK, and a black 68 charger that raced in the silver state classic!!

Fast forward again. After some time of messing with other vehicles, racing, going back into the Army in 2008, and 3 back to back deployments, an a stint of being a unemployed, having kids, and almost getting divorced, life seemed to take a turn for the better. Getting along with the wife, 2 college grad kids, one that wants me to teach him about being a motor head, and best, better job, REAL good money!

So far I have done quit a bit to the car, and had a shop do a little work on it for me while I was deployed. Go figure I do not like the term "pro touring" for what I am building the car to be. I will just say modern muscle, with old school race car look.

Since the only form of racing these cars did back in their hay day, was drag racing, and Nascar, I have decided to take a mixed approach of Nascar, and trans am with my car.

ENGINE: is the factory 383, balanced, Eagle rods, Wisco pistons, fully polished, knife edged, oil hole chamfered, nitraded, wheights knife edged steel crank. ARP main, studs, Keith black swinging pick-up oiling system, on a custom made 10 low profile pan. Solid cam, to work good with the Pro Charger D1SC supercharger, and intercooler. Edelbrock RPM intake, with Demon blow through carb, full MSD ignition, custom designed headers by me, welded by Alex at bighead motorsports. The exh will be all oval 3.5" tubing, to a NASCAR boom tube exh, drivers side exit, with a spintech muffler.
Full Aeromotive fuel system, new tank with sump, and feed and return lines.
Trans: Factory 727 that I built when I built the engine. Still on the fence if I will go gear vendors overdrive, or a 4 speed auto, or 5 speed manual.
Rear end: 3:23 sure drip 742 case, moser axles coming.

Brakes: 6 piston wildwood brakes front, 4 piston rear, new Wilwood MC on its way, trying to figure out and find small power brake booster for it. And wildwood prop valve.

Suspension: This is where I thought long and hard about this, and I am sure some mite say why, but I decided to maximize the factory style suspension. Factory front K member has been boxed, stich welded, and gussets in the right places.
QA1 lower tubular control arms, Magnum force upper ADJ arms, adj strut rods, WILL USE a speedway front torsion type adj sway bar, and my design rack in pinion steering I made for it about 11 years ago using a L body GM car rack in pinion steering. 1.125" torsion bars.
Rear 230 lbs leafs, 3/4" sway bar for now. Custom made frame connectors that tie the frames and torsion bar mount cross member.
QA1 double adj shocks. Which I would like to derive a way to make a remote adj, to go in the engine compartment, and the inside of the trunk.
Interior: All Autometer Phantom II gauges. Not sure what direction I am going with the interior, but do not want to be FULL RACE, or to plush. I will have a 6 point cage In it, but not noticeable.

The pictures are what the car looked like with original paint, one with it partially primed, and engine shot. I will be posting more pictures tomorrow.
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Old 05-26-2017, 05:49 AM
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slimjim slimjim is online now
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Great story and history of the car, It's definitely one of the best models ever released
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Old 05-26-2017, 08:32 AM
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Great car, better story. Nice detail with the boxed radiator support brace.

David
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Old 05-26-2017, 11:50 AM
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Ron in SoCal Ron in SoCal is offline
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Agree, great story and Thank You for your service!

Now get out there and enjoy the journey. Gonna be a very cool car when finished
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https://lateral-g.net/forums/showthread.php4?t=31246

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Old 05-30-2017, 01:41 AM
manny z manny z is offline
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Default Charger

Thank you guys for the kind comments. Weekend is done, now its time to get to work. Wish I can say I was just out this weekend doing nothing, but NO.. I will be posting more pictures of what I do this coming week.
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:50 AM
manny z manny z is offline
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Default Charger front suspension

Well had a chance to do some work on front suspension today. One thing I did find was, the shop I had it at for a while, installed some parts on it the wrong way. Nothing broken or missing just a matter of making sure they are on the RIGHT WAY!! I also had the chance to install the new Wilwood 6 piston calipers.

One mod that I did have to is, on the stock steering knuckles. Since I do not want the bump steer on this front end to 6" (sarcasm) from full droop to full compression. I had to drill the knuckle tie rod hole out to 5/8".

From the factory, the stock tie rods are on the bottom of the knuckles. With the factory setup, and steering box I am sure with slight adj, you can get the bump steer pretty close to 0. But the rack in pinion in my car, the tie rod has to sit on top of the knuckle now. I will do the final adj when the car is ready for the road.

In the process of looking for something in my shed, I happen to find a sway bar from my old dodge Dakota, that I did some heavy suspension mods to auto X, and road race. YES, a dodge Dakota, LOL.. Sorry no pics, they were on a computer that crashed on me.
That sway bar in question, was the stock one from the truck. It is solid, 1 1/8" in diam. So for ****s and gigs, I checked to see if it would fit on my charger, low and behold it fit!!!! And fit well!!!!! The center section of the bar, and the bend of the arms, look like they were friggen made for this car!!

I am going to take all the measurements of the bar tomorrow, and see what the rate is on it. I figure since this bar is a good size, and I am sure the rate of it will be good, plus I am going to be using QA1 double adj shocks, I will have room for more then enough of adj. Plus it will save me money, and fab time to try and fit a torsion bar type of front sway bar.

One thing I will be surely do to this bar is, mod the ends of the bar so it will have 2 vertical adj holes, instead of the one horizontal.
I am going to do this so the end links, will not have any bind, on bump and droop. I did this to my SRT 4 race car, and gave me more grip on the tight corners since the two front wheels were not having anymore bind issues.

I will posting pictures of the tie rod work I did, the brakes, and the how the front bar mounts on the car tomorrow.
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Old 06-02-2017, 01:28 AM
manny z manny z is offline
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Default updates with pictures

Alright first and foremost the whole idea with the dodge Dakota sway bar, is going to have to get shelved. Seems that the QA1 lower arms are a little different then the stockers. So it looks like I am going to go back to my idea of using the Speedway torsion bar style bar.

I finished up the tie rod situation. Now that I have them just where I want them, I am sure the bump steer will be just where I want it.

Also you will see the picture of the frame connectors. You can see how I tied them to the front frame rails, and the cross member for the torsion bars.

Don't have a picture of but, did work on my oiling system. I am running a Keith Black swinging pick up oil system. I misplaced one of the fittings so, I decided to get all new hardware for the feed side of it. All black AN fittings, and black braided line.
In one of the pictures you will see that the oil pan is flush with the K member. I made this pan out of a rear sump big block pan. Used a Moroso wide pan kit, and baffle kit.
I wanted to make sure that this engine will not starve for oil, EVER.. haha.

One picture of the rear sump I installed on the new gas tank. I am going to be running a feed and return line, both -10.

Mounted the fuel pump, on the rear rail, with the filter, up to a boost ref regulator.

Next a partial picture of the exh. The headers will be 2" primary tubes, as equal as they could of been. The collectors I decided to use are 4"x4" turbo waist gate square flanges, 7/16" thick. These are never going to warp from the heat. I am going to use 2 flex tubes right after the collectors, down to 3" to 3 1/2" oval tubes, into the X pipe, to a SPINTECH MUFFLER, on its way, to a boom tube coming out of the drivers side in front of the rear tire.
And one night while watching TV, I decided to take a Leather steering wheel cover, and some 1/8" thick dense foam. Also used white stitching for it.
Was thinking about aftermarket but, I could not find one that fitted to look I was looking for.
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:26 AM
wyattroa wyattroa is offline
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My favorite car by far..I love the round tail lights on it. Will be tagging along.
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Old 06-04-2017, 11:31 AM
rustomatic rustomatic is offline
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Cool stuff--I dig the ingenuity. There was/is a NASCAR Charger (I think they also had a 200 mph Superbird) at Canepa in Scotts Valley, which was of course in perfect/restored condition. The torsion bars were cockpit adjustable from the driver's seat position. If only I took pictures . . .
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Old 06-05-2017, 03:25 AM
manny z manny z is offline
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Default Project Updates. Lucky Find!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by rustomatic View Post
Cool stuff--I dig the ingenuity. There was/is a NASCAR Charger (I think they also had a 200 mph Superbird) at Canepa in Scotts Valley, which was of course in perfect/restored condition. The torsion bars were cockpit adjustable from the driver's seat position. If only I took pictures . . .
I would of liked to have seen how cockpit adjuster worked!!

Couple of small updates this weekend.

One, I was not sure what muffler I was going to use with that EXH I have. I was thinking I might have to change the tail section of the exh, to one of Dr.GAS'S BOOM TUBE MUFFLERS. But instead I found out that Spintech makes EXACTLY what I needed!! Since the oval tubes on the exh are 3.5" I thought it would hard to find something but, I was wrong. Spintech sells a duel inlet, and duel outlet oval 3.5 muffler, that I am going to fab into the exh to work. I found a lot of different cars with spintech mufflers, and REALLY like the way they sound!! One thing they were all duel exh, so I am sure mine will have a sound all its own with the exh going out on the drivers side, and pushed out by the Pro charger!!

On another note, it is funny how you always have some people telling you what you "should" do with your car. LOL!! Do this, do that, keep it all original, blah , blah , blah...

For example, my car came with low back bucket seats, without the factory headrest!! I thought of them as 2 small park benches, so I sold them and got a really price for them a few years back. So my quest for the seat I liked, and would go and look good inside the car. So Friday I was looking on CL for the San Fran bay area, and came across a pair of corvette seats that were priced to good to be true!! I called, and they were still for sale, so today I took the 2.5 hour drive to pick them up. They need a little TLC, and I am changing the cover anyways, and picked them up.

Already ordered the few small pieces that looked old, and will be ordering new leather covers for them, as soon as I finish the suspension, and exh of my car. These seats are out of a 97 vette. I am prett stocked about getting started on getting these to fit my car. I REALLY like the style of these seats. I personally think they will fit the look I am after.
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