68 Charger production differences

1968-1970 Dodge Charger Forum

  1. Richard Cranium

    Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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    I currently have two 68 Charger R/T's. The green one was built in November 13, 1967 & the bronze one was built on December 26, 1967. The green one has been "restored" while the bronze one has 2/3 original paint. While they are only a month & a half apart in production dates, there are some pretty subtle differences.....


    Both have the same style steering wheel, but the horn ring on the green car is chrome while the bronze horn ring is brushed. Both cars have the early style medallion next to the speedometer....

    4.jpg 8.jpg



    The mirror in the green car is lacking the plastic band around the perimeter of the mirror, while the bronze car has the band....

    5.jpg



    No shoulder belts on the green car. The bronze car has them. I have no idea when they became standard, but it was sometime within that month & a half production range....

    6.jpg



    Both cars only have seat belts for two in the rear. As I understand, a 3rd seat belt was optional, but became standard on cars built in January...

    18.jpg



    Notice the early style seat release. Both cars have this style & I have no idea when they changed over to the more familiar T-shaped release....

    17.jpg
     
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    • PP1RT

      PP1RT Well-Known Member

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      Can you get a closer pic of the little emblem by the speedo.

      Mine was built 4-22-68.
       
    • Kern Dog

      Kern Dog FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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      Old Fart ???
      Nice.
       
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      • Richard Cranium

        Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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        The green car has the 67 style exterior extractors and housings while the bronze car has the more familiar style. I have no idea why, but the green car has black seat belts making it a tri-color interior. Both cars have the factory tags on the belts indicating that the belts were built in the 4th quarter of 1967.

        19.jpg 20.jpg 21.jpg


        Both cars are missing the last clip, which is secured by a nut on the rear of the door belt moldings. Without that last clip, the moldings do have a tendency to move around if you try to do so. This would cause scratching of the paint & I'm sure that this is why they added the additional fastener. No idea when they added it.
        15.jpg

        Below is the "skeletal" substructure on the underside of the green car's trunk lid. The bronze car does not have the cut-outs in the "substructure".

        12.jpg

        21.jpg
         
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        • Richard Cranium

          Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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          Here's those funky tail light brackets in the trunk of the green car which were eliminated when the bronze car was built...

          16.jpg
          23.jpg


          Also, notice the difference in the length of the excess belt material on the rear seat belts between the two cars...

          25.jpg

          24.jpg

          Belt tag...

          26.jpg
           
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          • 69L48Z27

            69L48Z27 Well-Known Member

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            Same factories? I'm not up on Chargers but I would assume more than one factory made them, maybe?
             
          • moparnation74

            moparnation74 Well-Known Member

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            Mark

            Thanks for taking time to post this information. These fine details are what separates restorations. It is nice to see history preserved.

            The early builds have lots of subtle variations.....

            Justin
             
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            • Richard Cranium

              Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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              These decorative buttons were not on the map pockets of my old Hemi Charger that was built in May '68....

              30.jpg


              Both of these cars have the padded sliding ashtray with the later built Hemi Charger had the flip down ashtray....

              31.jpg


              The bronze car is a 4-speed & came with the dreaded Inland shifter, but I bought a Hurst mechanism with an adapter for the inland shifter lever which is pretty cool. My later built Hemi Charger came with a Hurst shifter with the early stick HURST script. No pictures of that though.

              3.jpg 13.jpg
               
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              • Richard Cranium

                Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                Here you go.....

                32.jpg

                My old May built car had the "Fratzog" emblem.







                Same plant, Hamtramck.
                 
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                • PP1RT

                  PP1RT Well-Known Member

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                  Ok. Mine has the same medallion as both you have now.
                  My 68 Coronet RT (4-10 build) has the fratzog. I thought they were the only one that got those. Still learning...
                   
                • mopar 3 B

                  mopar 3 B Well-Known Member

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                  I noticed the difference in quarter joint filler. The wifes plain jane Charger was bondo the Rt lead
                   
                • Photon440

                  Photon440 Well-Known Member

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                  On my Satellites/roadrunners the painted roofs had lead, the vinyl roofs had plastic filler. Wasn't bondo, it was a filler that cured in the heat of the baking oven.
                   
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                  • mopar 3 B

                    mopar 3 B Well-Known Member

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                    Both had vinal roofs. What color was the plastic filler?
                     
                  • Dans 68

                    Dans 68 Well-Known Member

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                    As I recollect, and as the '68 Charger Data Book confirms (I know, dubious as a source....), the shoulder and center belts were optional. Option code 556, 557, 558, and 559 for the center passenger front seatbelt, center passenger rear seatbelt, 2 rear shoulder belts, and 2 front shoulder belts, respectively.

                    Dan
                     
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                    • PP1RT

                      PP1RT Well-Known Member

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                      Mine has the shoulder belts and here is a pic of those codes on my build sheet you referred to...

                      Screenshot_20171111-044451.png
                       
                    • Richard Cranium

                      Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                      Here's some more differences. The early upper grille support tray does not have any holes drilled in the indentation to the left of the hood spring on both of my early 68's....

                      31.jpg

                      .....while a later built spring car does have them. Those two holes would be used to attach the 1969 hood release latch.

                      32.JPG



                      The November built green car's sun visor mount is chrome with no shoulder belt brackets...

                      33.jpg

                      December 67 built bronze car does have shoulder belts and the bracket is painted matte silver...

                      34.jpg



                      This is the air cleaner on the green 440 a/c equipped car which looks like a 1967 440 air cleaner minus the snorkels. I believe that this air cleaner was also used on 383 equipped Darts....

                      36.jpg

                      The more familiar smaller air cleaner on the bronze 440....

                      35.jpg


                      Notice the shape of the rear hex fitting and the shape of the black line on the a/c condenser on the green car...

                      40.jpg

                      ....in comparison to this later 68-69 a/c condenser......

                      41.jpg
                       
                      Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
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                      • WileERobby

                        WileERobby Well-Known Member

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                        What a great thread. These subtle differences are interesting, to say the least. Which goes to the saying, the car is correct the way it came off the assembly line. My uncle worked the Hamtramck plant back then, good possibility he may have been part of the build on your cars.
                         
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                        • Richard Cranium

                          Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                          The green car has the round vent knob and the bronze car has the square knobs....

                          42.jpg 43.jpg


                          This may be hard to see, but the armrests on the green car are more square-ish on the top and side surfaces.....

                          45.jpg

                          Whereas the black armrests in the bronze car are more rounded....

                          44.jpg


                          While they do look the same, I find all these subtle production differences interesting.

                          46.jpg 47.jpg 48.jpg
                           
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                          • oldbee

                            oldbee FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                            Mark I’m curious- are the stripes laid on the same measurements? My Bee has the silver shoulder harness brackets & 3 belts for rear seat. ‘ Spring’ build. Oh and fratzog on dash.
                             
                          • Richard Cranium

                            Richard Cranium FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                            The wide rearward stripe is supposed to be centered on the marker light and stop just forward of the body line where the lower valance corner cap is. I carefully put the strip on the green car myself so it's even on both sides, but the strip on the bronze car is the original & is not symmetrical. I'll put some pictures up in a little bit.
                             
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