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I threw in the towel...

Snook

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I finally came to the realization that if I tried to cut corners, I would just double or triple the problems and costs. With my current project (and last one I hope) a 1963 Plymouth Savoy (my old race car MAXIMVS) everything I did was at least 20 years old. The man I sold it to did a great job of preserving my work but time is unforgiving and nothing is going to stop aging - I know, I'm 65 years old and can attest to the fact that I'm not the man that I was 20 years ago.

That said, do yourselves a favor and realize that when you take on a project, that little will be able to be saved. Just resign yourself to commit to replace EVERYTHING, as it will need replacing.

I committed to return MAXIMVS to street duty and that means that ALL the fiberglass body parts would have to replaced with OEM steel parts - hood, deck lid, bumpers (the bumpers have been replaced with new AMD reproductions - $1300 but worth it IMO).

I've had to replace the following that I thought I would not have to replace:
  • All front end components and I mean ALL. Bushings, spindles, bearings, torsion bars, shocks, etc, etc.
  • Front and rear disc brake systems including hoses, calipers, rotors, master cylinder, spindles, etc, etc.
  • Trans work - the rear support was shot so I had the whole trans gone through. Seals were shot, gaskets were shot. Thankfully, the RMVB A&A VB was OK. I had to go a less radical PTC 9.5" converter for some reasonable street manners.
  • Engine work - the heads needed work, new guides, decking, etc, etc... New solid ISKY roller and EZ roller bushed lifters with spring kit (retainers, springs, keepers, etc, etc...)
  • New carbs modified for Max Wedge crossram use (too long to get into this, so I'm going to leave it at that)
  • There's more but I'm sure that you get the idea by now.
I'm almost at the point of starting MAXIMVS for the first time since I started this resurrection. I still have to sort out the electrical system.

Chuck (snook)
 
I can relate. A very daunting project and seems you are well on your way to completion. Keep us posted. ruffcut
 
Sounds like you're not leaving anything to chance with the restoration. Lots of time and money to do it correct! 440'
 
If I were you, I would leave the body as is with the fiberglass & all. A lighter car generally gets better fuel economy anyway and if the paint is good, who cares! I don't think that anyone is going to be rapping their knuckles on one part to another to see what it's made of. On top of that, If you decide to sell it, or God Forbid; "have to sell it"; the fiberglass could actually fetch a higher price if a buyer wanted to race it! I once knew a guy who would challenge people to race,(I am talking street racing), but would make an excuse why he couldn't race at that time and he would go home & overnight, swap in his race motor. Technically, he was cheating but no one caught on for a long time! I knew another who had 2 of the same cars, (Mustangs) same year & in the same exact color and trim. He would do the same thing but didn't need to swap motors. He just swapped license plates!
 
Body is already done with good sheet metal, glass went to a local racer. MAXIMVS's race days are over with me and will do occasional NSS duty in street trim. Car should be ready for firing up next month sometime, coming along nicely IMO.

Chuck (snook)
 
sounds like a nice car
should be a total blast to drive too

I can relate some I'm 62, I got more time now too
not sure how many more of these projects
I have left in me
seems I'm never done,
I find something else I want to do
rarely ever replacing Org. parts, always something newer or better
'day 2 baby', everything can be unbolted & taken off,
returned to OE if needed

disclosure;
don't get what I'm about to say wrong, not meant as a critique
of your work or decisions

IMO some of the stuff didn't 'need/have to be replaced'
just to occasionally street drive it
the safety stuff yeah maybe, brakes & bushing etc.
the fiberglass parts fenders, bumpers, maybe not so much
just don't wreck it
'I know it's safer with steel too'
but it didn't have to be replaced, just to drive on the street
must be more of a "I want to replace it deal"
unless you have some weird-*** laws, we don't have even here

good luck & happy MoParing
 
Yeah, I'm my own worst enemy sometimes... well almost all the time. I'm always open to a good constructive critique, so no worries there. I could have left the glass on but it didn't fare too well either after 20 years. I butchered the Glasstek hood back then and it was driving me crazy being constantly reminded of the crappy max wedge scoop job I did back then. I also don't want to have to lift the hood and decklid off, much easier now that I'm an old fart to just use the factory hinges that Ma engineered the first time around. The glass bumpers were lightweights and the rear was cracked, the front was chipped up and warped. Good enough for a race car but not good enough for a street car IMO. As far as wrecking it - that what Hagerty is for but if it gets wrecked, it won't likely be my fault but another driver when streeting.

It will also be worth more in case I croak and the wife or whoever is left has to liquidate. The car will never be a restoration candidate as it has been modified for drag racing since before I bought the shell back in 2002. It will be what I guess is referred to as a 'Day 2' but it's beyond that. It was also a slant 6 car and doesn't even carry the cache of being a V8 car but I love this thing anyway; I wouldn't have sold a total resto in progress of a 1966 Coronet post car that I was doing to buy the car back from the man I sold it to so many years ago. An added bonus is the wife loves it too.

In any case, I'm building it my way and I'm not a purist but I do like my cars to be tight and perform well with looking somewhat period correct. I wrestled with using MW exhaust manifolds but I elected to get the Doug fenderwell headers I installed back then (no longer available now I guess) and have them ceramic re-coated. They look great and are in great shape, the coater said they were the nicest he's seen and there was virtually no wear from being run.

Chuck (snook)
 
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