Friday, May 29, 2009

340 HP or 360 HP - Second Thoughts

I may have jumped to a conclusion earlier when I discounted the 360 hp high performance engine. I had discounted it based only on the radiator support configuration. I've re-examined the radiator support and I don't find any evidence of the Daytona Blue color that came with the car (the radiator support would have had some over spray from the painting process). Colors I do find are copper brown (the last color the car was painted) and gloss black (one of the other colors originally offered). Based on this I don't believe we can say conclusively that the radiator support is original to the car which means we can not conclude the 340 HP engine was originally installed. In fact, the Heater Delete and sintered brakes options suggest 360 hp. From the Complete Corvette Restoration publication I quote, "Of the 124 1963 Corvettes equipped with Option C48 (Heater Delete), our survey located less than a dozen. Most were equipped with the Z06 performance option (360 HP engine) and one of these were originally sold in Hawaii. Only two of the 1963 Corvettes reporting option C48 were not equipped with Z06, and both were coupes... ". I have no expectation that this is a Z06 car, I am only pointing out that most Heater Delete cars came with the 360 hp engine. So, what does this mean? What do we do? What motor gets installed? Lets think about this...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Paint Removal & Body Prep

I spent lots of evenings and a couple weekends removing the old paint. I tried paint remover, sand paper, sanding discs for the dual action sander, heavy duty scotch brite wheels, sand paper flapper wheels and the FEIN Multimaster (the oscillating tool seen on TV). The FEIN was the best tool for removing the paint. It was recommended to me by Dennis S. so I bought one and found it to be the coolest tool I own. Excellent recommendation Dennis. Thanks.
These are pretty high resolution pictures so feel free to double click on them and check out the condition of the car. It has a little nose damage and a little tail damage but nothing major.
Fiberglass matting and resin are on order. All areas that have exposed fiberglass threads will receive liberal amounts of epoxy resin then the excess will be squeegeed off. Some areas will require additional treatment with fiberglass matt and resin. When all is complete the car will receive a couple gallons of spray gel coat. This will occur months from now.
A little bump to the nose but overall it's not bad. There are suppose to be bonding strips that go on the inside of the front wheel wells where the seam is located. The original bonding strips were probably cut when the front wheel flares were removed. Instead of patching what's left of the existing bonding strips, new, full length, bonding strips will be installed. They're on order and should arrive this week from Eckler's.

1975 350 Engine - Bummer

This is the 1975 L82 350 4 Bolt Main (379010) that was part of the original purchase. It has issues. I pulled the plugs this weekend and water came out of 3 cylinders. So I opened her up to see the extent of the damage. It wasn't very pretty. Everything will require rebuilding. The good news is 1) this isn't the engine that I was going to put in the Corvette and 2) I am not the one that has to rebuild it. :0)
Pretty ugly. I had thought of putting this engine in the 57 Nomad but those thoughts are gone.
The heads had a brand new rebuild done on them about 10 years ago and were never run. These are castings 333882.
I vacuumed up all the water, drained the oil pan (it had water too), dried everything, sprayed everything with PB Blaster then reassembled the motor. It actually looked pretty good when I was done. None the less, someone else can have fun rebuilding this motor. I'll probably put it on Craig's list.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

VIN, Trim Tag & Specification Sheet


Based on what we know today this is what we believe the window sticker should have looked like.

Monday, May 4, 2009

327 - Option L76, 340 hp

This is a higher resolution picture you can click on to see the details. There isn't a needle on the tach but it does red line at 6500 rpm. This was only offered on the 340 and 360 HP performance engines.

We are very confident this car came with a 340 hp solid lifter 327. This is awesome news. Clues include 1) the Heater Delete option was only available on cars intended for racing or export (suggests a high performance engine), 2) the car has a 6500 rpm red line on the tachometer which was used only on the 340 hp carbureted and 360 hp fuel injected engines, 3) performance sintered metallic brakes, option J65, were found in one of the parts boxes and verified by Dennis S. as having come off the car and, 4) the car does not have a fuel injection fresh air hole in the radiator support which means it was not fuel injection. All things considered, everything points to the 340 hp solid lifter carbureted engine. And for those that know the performance engines did not come with power steering, Dennis S. confirmed the power steering you see in the pictures is from his 1975 L82 Corvette. The 63 did not have power steering. I like it!


First and foremost I want to thank Dennis S. (the seller) for disclosing all know issues up front and accurately. I am very pleased with this car! The majority of the restoration should be able to be performed at home. Thanks Dennis. GOOD - Both the body and the frame are very sound. There have been no major body repairs or frame issues. There are no soft spots in the fiberglass and all body panels appear to be original. This accounts for 95% of the vehicle condition. BAD - 1) The A pillars suffer major rust. This condition wasn’t apparent until after the entire dash was removed. 2) Fire damage occurred to the fire wall and the left wheel well. This must have been a good size fire because the fresh air grill inside the passenger compartment had melted. 3) The front left portion of the frame where the bumper attaches is rusted and will probably need to be replaced. It’s about a 1 foot section. 4) A few odd holes and slots have been cut into the frame and will require patching.
UGLY - Nada!


Ty and I spent Friday, Saturday and Sunday disassembling the body. Dewayne J. also helped with the efforts on Sunday. The wiring harness, dash, interior parts, and under hood parts were all removed. The body was rolled outside and blasted with the pressure washer, dried then brought back into the garage.

BODY REMOVAL - May 2, 2009

Before the body was removed the replacement radiator support was installed and Ty removed the headlight buckets. Dennis and Annette K., Ty, Steven S., Dewayne J., Gerri and I removed the body from the frame on Saturday May 2, 2009 at "high noon". Kelsey S. was the photographer. Thanks to all.

TAKING POSSESSION - April 28, 2009

Gerri is operating the come-along I am the photographer. How cool is that!


PODS informed us the container had arrived in Spokane on April 25th and informed us we could unload the container anytime after 8:00 am that morning. We rented a U-haul trailer then Max H., Matt P. and I drove 150 miles only to find that the container had not arrived. The on duty PODS personnel told us it was their mistake and they would compensate us by delivering the container to our house when it arrived on Monday or Tuesday. Long story short, they reneged, the container arrived Tuesday, Gerri and I had to drive back to Spokane.