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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default 68 rag camaro wrapped around an 04 GTO/LS1 man

    Stripped down my 68 camaro convertible all the way after patching the quarters, floor and trunk years back(bought the running car for $1600 in 1990). This past year have replaced both quarters, fixed inside quarters, rear top deck structure, prepped the rest. Frame rails, shock mounts all very good.
    Got a salvage complete wrecked 04 GTO-LS1/6-speed this past spring($1700 total thru IAA), stripped most of it and removed the dash, all wiring, cut out the floor and began retrofitting into the 68. Course the later dashes are deeper but similar widths between pillars and by measurements the GTO firewall protrudes in about 8-9 inches from stock firewall. Less cabin space and will end up with no rear floor space but the big uplift is using the massive AC/heat unit, entire dash, column, pedals, both masters and all electrics incorporating modern options.
    Away goes the old kick panel doors and window cranks won't be visible so motors are a must.

    Using the GTO floor will have to be lower as the floor to window base is 1-2 " taller, floor width is wider by about 8 inches so hacking/channeling is necessary to utilize the GTO seats(minus the headrests).

    Referencing is based off of the 68 windshield-the GTO upper dash to floor is about 1-2 inches taller in GTO so the floor out of the GTO will be 'sunk' a bit without sacrificing much sub frame height/body. The wiper motor and arms are higher than the cowl panel so I may ‘tilt’ the cowl panel and beveling the sides to clear the wipers creating a hideaway windshield base. Shape the GTO curved portion to meet into the original cowl surface so the grill header will sit. Will blend the donor dash and cowl areas(proper supports even utilizing the galvanized tunnel brackets from the GTO) and will give me 'space' between the original firewall and deepened firewall for the cable cruise, CB/fuse block(both were mounted on the GTO pass wheel well) and ample space for the brake and clutch masters. See how can incorporate the side vents as the GTO plumbed into upper door fronts and blasted out of doors. More engine clearance and radiator/fan/condenser space utilizing most from the GTO(recovery tank, washer bottle). Engine/trans will sit
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Floor accomodations

    [SIZE=4]Inside width of 68 frame is 47 1/2 at bottom to 48" at top so the GTO floor being wider shall channel each side roughly 2" to get about 52”, enough for door panel clearance so far.
    Probably make the channeling most of length of door and by doing this seat belt mount is gone but could be reused but since I plan to use shoulder harness from GTO won’t be a problem. Utilize the overhead support to create a 'flat' roll bar to use the shoulder belting-nifty..want a safe car too.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Springs, Texas
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    2,772
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    Default

    Would be better to start a build thread in the projects section. This section doesn’t get a lot of views.

    Don
    1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
    1969 Camaro convertible - LS3 4L65E Ridetech Level 2 Tru-Turn - sold
    1959 El Camino
    1969 Mustang Sportsroof
    1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

  4. #4
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    21
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    Default

    I'm new in the forums and figured within this region..have not seen a major undertaking going this far to modernize a muscle car, have you?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Idea of doing this

    So far to some the idea of chopping a classic up to accommodate a modern car seems too much effort but if you enjoy metal crafting even though with just basic tools
    that's where I am such as what Ian does on 'Full Custom Garage' to the extreme's making something unique. I wouldn't be satisfied with just another camaro with an LS
    so got measuring before I decided and seeing it's possible even using the GTO seats with the GTO floor pan minus the headrests. I'm hesitant of cutting into the rockers
    but their 9" wide and later I can figure in a decent interior trim. Probably put airbags in as both popped from the accident.
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  6. #6
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    Nov 2018
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    Default

    GTO seat is 30" from top hrest to seat and 68 is 19 so minus the 7" headrest be about 4" higher than stock seat and width can do inside rockers but not by much..

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Dash meet to A pillar shall require proper end drips and closeouts with strength

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    Photo partly shows at top what is needed to integrate to 68. My pillars had rot is what you see missing. The car body rough but seen a lot worse.
    The GTO dash overlay housing the cluster, switches, air/temp controls etc was suspended in urethane with 2 4" long bolts onto inner fender structure and 2 short bolts horizontally securing the dash ends to inner fender(see in left photo the long bolt of drive side). Shall reuse bolts cutting to length but can't use urethane and don't need to. See in photo that ugly yellow piece is from the pass kick steel inner support is being reused into 68. Pass side the BCM mounts.
    Last edited by GB68; 12-14-2018 at 07:59 PM. Reason: rid of attachment-duplicate

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Nashville
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    610
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GB68 View Post
    I'm new in the forums and figured within this region..have not seen a major undertaking going this far to modernize a muscle car, have you?
    There are plenty of people similar things, might find useful info in build threads that could come in handy or save you some time.
    It doesn't take anything away from your project, but there is this guy who several years ago did a flawless job of basically what you are doing. https://www.pro-touring.com/threads/...-A-convertible

    Not sure I understand the benefit of using the GTO floor, but it looks like a good project.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default

    Hi Chuck, yes I did go through Sam's project, quite a bit of customizing and hope to end up that outcome level and since I'm using the huge GTO air unit, GTO seats and electrical items utilizing most all GTO components makes sense to use entire dash, floor. Sam cut his defrosters as he said 'not a deal breaker' and since he went with aftermarket air unit he could stick with original metal more. The GTO seats have nice reinforcing mounts and the GTO floor supports it's air unit, larger tunnel and trans mount is already there with exhaust hanger, just adding the sub-frame caged nuts. I can use the entire console too with the wider tunnel and the seating will be straight on to pedals. Long run I'll have a bit less finagling on small things I hope! And thanks for input, doers enjoy!

  10. #10
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Just repairs as you can buy those inside lower quarter to rocker patch panels for coups but they look different for vert's so made the repairs.
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  11. #11
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Dash meet to A pillar shall require proper end drips and closeouts with strength

    Frankenstein connecting drip support repair pieces integrating the GTO dash to the 68 cowl for the one side and make dup's for other side.

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  12. #12
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    Nov 2018
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    Forgotten the BCM mounts under the passenger side dash glove box but the drive side lower kick houses the PIM (Powertrain interface module) and the TPM next to it not sure what it's function is, don't see it in schematics yet and so as the drive kick panel comes in over the 68's inner rocker that's fine except as a few inches further back the seat mounts begin and so there is where I'll have to channel into the inner rockers for the wider floor to accommodate the GTO seats as all the side to side will be tight against the door panel closing and still operate the switches. Be locating the shoulder harness looks like just behind the angled factory inner quarter welded support and comes up all the way to the roof and what I plan to use is all across the underside of roof(soft top)is the support roof metal out of the GTO and hanging the GTO LED overhead lighting. There is lots of lighting these cars came with and that's a plus as you get older-hah! Plan to use the entire dash, AC-heat unit(it is an integrated LARGE unit),steering, pedals, console and factory shifter location, possibly the steering rack, engine cradle bolting under the sub-frame as the width is nearly same on both, maybe the headers should work out too.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Under dash, end drip supports, dash carrier mocked up

    Depending where you decide to cut into original dash can determine what you can save sparing the extra bridging and water run offs. On the top surface of original dash I cut out all the well(you have to)and stopped at the inside vertical seams, maintaining strength on each side where the outer and inner cowl join. The GTO dash was then measured width wise had to add to the drip edges of it in order for water to extend outward/sides into the gutter. First two photos underneath two pieces each side(guess if you have better jigs and skills just one). Third photo can see a mock-up.

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  14. #14
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Better pic of dash mock-up.

    The rear of hood has to meet all same location as original and so later on because of the raised GTO cowl with wiper assembly have to create a raised custom sill plate.
    Plan to possibly start from scratch or modify the original camaro piece raising it..etc. I knew all this before deciding as obvious concerns in the beginning.
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  15. #15
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Tacked the dash and tunnel floor positioning

    The master cap clears fine under my opening. May be odd to say but this GTO dash and floor was meant for these cars as sure you have to modify but if your creative this stuff is fun creating a modern car from a complete donor car without having to chase down all kinds of items. Plan to use the GTO motor cradle as it's bolted through framing at four points and when I slide the sub-frame under shall find out the position. Bolted to the rear of GTO carrier is the rack and hope to use that too. Window motors could be a challenge but shall see.
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  16. #16
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    A/C unit and a clutch pedal in just to check for foot clearance as have gutted about 2" inside the rocker metal for foot space.
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  17. #17
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    After cutting about 20 or so inches, about 2" deep at top about the length of front to rear seat then added a plate. Shall fully weld.
    Deliberately want to use the rocker to hide the wiring inside as the pass side has guite a bit-lighting,speakers, trunk and gas electric locks, fuel wiring and roof light.
    Will take some creative sill dressings and such later..

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  18. #18
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    I've moved your thread to the Project Updates section - otherwise folks not in the South won't be as likely as to enjoy your updates.

  19. #19
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default checking floor to sub-frame clearance. Homemade sub-frame to anchor extenders

    I had the connectors fully bolted in the car before dismantling the 68 fall 2017
    and now fitting in the front floor half clamped I drilled a pilot hole for the caged nut to be welded on top.
    Fortunately the 68 subframe meets the GTO floor reinforcement area.
    Speaking of 'getting lucky with sizing' the 4 bolt engine cradle of the GTO is almost dead center
    under the 68 subframe depending where I end up modifying and mounting.
    Just lengths so far the motor/trans will sit behind the rear of the crossmember 2-3 inches and may be lucky enough to
    retain the front sump and use the GTO rack unit. The rack is 2" too wide on either side then to correct side tie rod lengths.
    If not room for rack then a rear sump is needed. Shall see...

    can


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  20. #20
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    Nov 2018
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    Winchester, KY
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    Default Checking seat and door space.

    The door manual window crank will not have space to swing it
    so of course I knew in beginning and planned to go with
    power windows/locks anyway, no problem with door latch.
    May incorporate the door latches and power lock mechanisms.
    But to transfer window supports & lift motor may be wishful thinking ..shall see.
    Appears I will use the GTO floor frame stubs where I cut the floor about mid-way through shifter hole the framing supports
    continued on the second floor a few inches and curve upward tying into the side to side supports which are in line with camaro
    subframe ends and probably fabricate joiners-about 10", negating full sub connectors.
    Surprising some of the dimensions are compatible with the older bodys.


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