January 2, 2016
As the darkness of winter evenings sets in we decided to move our Friday night cruise-in to Saturday afternoon. Since I have been pushing for this change for a while I thought I should show up for the first one. One of the cars, truck actually, that also showed up was a silver 1967 Chevy step side pickup. I had seen the truck before but there was something new about it.... a For Sale sign! I wasn't really looking for another project but the owner offered up a good price so I took it. It is about a three year restore done by the owner's brother in his shop in Tennessee. Not a show truck but very nicely done. The interior looks very clean and pretty stock with the exception of an upgraded radio and Vintage Air. The engine is supposed to be a Chevy 302 DZ engine from a 1968 or 1969 Z28, that will take some investigation to prove, the tranny is a simple TH350 and the rear gear is a 373 posi. Disc brakes up front, drums on the rear, power steering and power brakes. Wheels are Boss 338 black spokes with 255-60-R18 series tires on the front and 265-60-R18 on the rear.
Jan 4, 2016
Jim delivered the car this morning and we exchanged mega-dollars for paperwork, LOL. I will call my insurance company today and get this thing covered. I have a few projects I need to finish at home today. Then I can go to the DMV, maybe tomorrow if I get conformation of insurance coverage, to see what sort of hassles I will have this time. Hopefully it will go smoother than the AMX registration.
January 5, 2016
After I removed the PO's license plate I noticed there is no light for the plate, kind of illegal. I aslo removed the trailer hitch insert the PO had mounted, just looks like a shine buster waiting to strike! Unfortunately when the hitch was installed some the roll pan had been cut out the make room for t. No way to fix it that would not involve painting so for now I will have to live with it….. maybe I can get a reverse light to fit in there without too much trouble.
January 8, 2016
I now have insurance. The weird VIN number did not seem to be a problem with my insurance company, I hope that holds true during registration too. I will have to wait until next week to test the bureaucrats at the DMV however.
In the mean time I have been planning on projects to take the truck to where I want it. Excluding the crazy engine swap dream I will attack the interior first. It is pretty much bone stock right now and looks a bit like a farm truck. It needs carpet for sure and a headliner. Bucket seats would do a lot as well and I am looking seriously at Corbeau Sport Seats. They are true buckets without the look of racing seats. Corbeau makes a mounting frame with sliders that replaces the stock bench seat frame. The downside of this is the frame would be exposed between the seats. A center console would solve that issue and would be a good addition. The gauge cluster is not in the best visual condition but there are replacements available at a wide range of prices. The door panels are metal and painted silver like the truck. I will either get them upholstered, replace them with aftermarket ones or simply paint them black.
January 14, 2016
Now that I have the truck insured I headed out to the DMV to get it registered. It all went painlessly until I was told even though I had the Tennessee title that was signed over to me I could not get a Georgia title. That is because the truck had previously been registered without the title and apparently you can’t go back. No clue why the PO didn’t get a Georgia title when he bought the car from his brother in Tennessee. That may have something to do with the way the truck was registered in Tennessee. No big deal, I have a Georgia plate and the 1967 plate to run on the truck so I am legal.
I took the truck out for about an hour on its maiden road trip. It is peppy for sure. A bit noisy and there are a few rattles but it rides nice. The steering is very tight and quicker than even the AMX. The brakes are awesome and the suspension feels good for 1967 technology, a little more body lean than I like. I may see what is available to help that without spending a fortune!
January 30, 2016
The truck got its first long drive today to our weekly Monroe Georgia Saturday cruise-in. The whole trip was about 75 miles. I got to 85 mph on the four lane which the truck handled great, no pulls, no shakes no shimmies. The secondary road to Monroe is a two lane rather twisty one that the Z loves and I didn’t expect too much from the truck. But the truck handled the curves much better than I thought it would. Most of the guys have seen the truck before since it belonged to one of the regular cruise-in guys but everyone thought it was really nice and that I got a good deal, I’m happy too. One of the guys did notice something I had not seen. Whoever installed the engine and or the brakes ran the brake hard lines right next to the header, like really close. This is asking for brake fluid boil so I will have to move them. While we were looking over the engine I noticed the belt that runs the AC compressor and the PS pump is in the wrong groove. It needs to be on the outside to align with the water pump. I will move that before it get thrown off. On the way home I got to test the brakes as some idiot pulled around from behind a stalled van in a left turn lane and turned right in front of me. A little tire squeal but not really that close. I did give the idiot the appropriate “salute”!!!
May 20, 2016
Well this is disappointing. I was told this engine is a 67-69 Z28 DZ 302. I have pulled the valve covers to discover casting number 333882 for the heads which is 1970-1980 350-400. Valves are 1.94 and 1.50 but the chambers are 76cc ……..smog stuff! I have found the partial VIN stamp on the front of the block indicating it was produced at the Saginaw plant in 1967. From what I can find only SS and Z28 Camaro engines were VIN stamped at the factory. The casting number on the back of the block is 3970010 which says it is either a 1969 302 4 bolt or a 1969 327 2 bolt or a 69-80 350 2 or 4 bolt. I need more investigation.