Ownership Verified: The horribly-behind-schedule family project car - 1968 Plymouth GTX 426

BerserkerCatSplat

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Quick picture of the interior progress:



The car has the (fairly rare) power window option, and after some quick testing we have determined that all four window motors are stone-dead. Replacing those will have to happen before we make any more progress on the interior, fortunately Chrysler used the same basic motor design for decades, so we can buy $50 rebuilt motors from Rockauto instead of $250 NOS units and just swap some brackets over.
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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US car manufacturers used many parts for decades. Once a part was deemed good enough it was put into everything produced henceforth.
Yep, lots of savings to be had with standardized parts. For a basic, hidden part like a window motor, it makes sense not to change it for no good reason. They eventually went to lighter-weight motors in the early 90s, but the mounting bosses are all still the same.
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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Everything under the hood is finished, all gauges and senders and electricals and whatnot.




Better shot of the completed dash area, still needs the console but carpet obviously has to go in first.




...and before the carpet goes in, I need to finish changing out the window motors. The other setback is that the master 4-gang window switch has a broken internal spring and probably needs a rebuild ($150), which is pretty dear but cheaper than ~$300 for a used replacement unit. Hopefully I can just fix it myself rather than sending it off - it's not a particularly complicated switch, it's just that parts aren't readily available.




Anyway, in celebration of completing the electricals, we turned the engine over a few times. It can't run as there's not a drop of fuel in the system, but it's nice to hear it spin over after all this time.

 
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edkwon

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Are you excited the latest Furious 8 movie will have Vin Diesel driving a GTX?
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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I love F&F movies so I'm stoked regardless. :lol: Nice to see a GTX get some love, even if it is a '71. Vin already drove a '70 GTX (albeit a clone, started life as a Satellite) in the series which is the same body style as ours.
 
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BerserkerCatSplat

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(After a few delays involving coolant leaks) IT'S ALIIIIIIIIIIVE!


Ignore the clattering noise, the headers still need some snugging up and the 3-piece design means they may never really seal correctly - competition style headers, what can you do.

~3:00 for tailpipe music and ~5:00 for gratuitous revving.

Feels great to finally hear the motor running, 20 years after it was initially built!
 

CraigB

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Dead soft aluminum gaskets, copper gaskets or lots of racers just use copper RTV to seal headers.

Sounds great otherwise! Congrats!
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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Just get stock headers.
While the stock Hemi manifolds are decent, they're ~$3000 for a non-repro set. Paying three grand to lose ~40HP is a non-starter.


Dead soft aluminum gaskets, copper gaskets or lots of racers just use copper RTV to seal headers.

Sounds great otherwise! Congrats!
We've got some good gaskets on there, they just probably need a tighten as they've only been torqued to the stock spec for the iron manifolds. The thinner flange on the header probably needs a bit more clamp to seal correctly. Thanks!
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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Holy shite... but did your engine not have them on when you got it or did you sell them?
It never had them. The car itself was completely engine-less when we bought it, a prior owner had blown up the factory Hemi at some point and replaced it with a 440, which was pulled out by the guy we bought it from. We bought the engine out of a different wrecked car, but the manifolds were already gone. It was also missing the intake manifold and carbs, we had to source those elsewhere.

Hemi parts are crazy money in general. A pair of remanufactured Carter AFB Hemi carburetors are around $6,000CAD.
 
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Dr_Grip

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The whole Mopar ecosystem seems to suffer some kind of crazy-grade price bubble.
 

Spectre

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The whole Mopar ecosystem seems to suffer some kind of crazy-grade price bubble.
A quick look at production numbers will tell you why. Mopar lagged GM and Ford by quite a lot in terms of production and sales numbers (of now-desirable models) back in the muscle car era. Simple supply and demand fills in the rest. :dunno: I do expect this bubble (and indeed many of the collector car market bubbles) to pop in the not terribly distant future as demand lessens simply from the Baby Boomers dying off or exiting the market.
 

_HighVoltage_

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A quick look at production numbers will tell you why. Mopar lagged GM and Ford by quite a lot in terms of production and sales numbers (of now-desirable models) back in the muscle car era. Simple supply and demand fills in the rest. :dunno: I do expect this bubble (and indeed many of the collector car market bubbles) to pop in the not terribly distant future as demand lessens simply from the Baby Boomers dying off or exiting the market.
I've mentioned this before, but I really don't get the Mopar obsession with "numbers matching" cars. I know that originality matters for classic cars, but it seems like Mopar guys are extra obsessive about it. So what if there were only five 71 Hemi Cuda convertibles made from the factory with that particular rear end...you can put that hemi engine in a convertible that came with a 318 and, at least I, wouldn't care that it's not one of those factory cars.

It's cool, but certainly not "OMG, I will pay $2 million extra because it is a numbers matching car."

(I can't remember the exact number, so I used 5 just to illustrate the point).
 
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GRtak

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It is not just Mopar guys that want a numbers matching car. They are just rarer than the Fords and Chevys.
 

Spectre

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Exactly this - ALL domestic marques have hordes of people wanting numbers matching cars, it's just that there are far fewer Mopars to fight over. Ford and GM (and to a lesser degree AMC or predecessor company) collectors are every bit as rabid.

"Numbers matching" is really a USDM maker thing, as the most other manufacturers did was number the head, engine and chassis, leaving the rest un-numbered. They just didn't bother, whereas in the US many parts were made in such numbers that many many parts were serialized at their production facilities for a number of reasons I won't get into here.
 
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JimCorrigan

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This build is so awesome. I wanna drive over to Alberta just to see it.
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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The whole Mopar ecosystem seems to suffer some kind of crazy-grade price bubble.
Well, any time you're dealing with low production numbers, you're gonna see big dollars - supply and demand! As mentioned, Mopar made fewer cars in total, so the rarity value is higher on average. In terms of parts, Mopar also had a habit of using very specific parts (especially for Hemis) - they didn't always parts-bin stuff the way Ford and Chevy did. The carburetors are a good example - Hemi cars used different carbs than all other non-Hemi Mopars, and even then they changed things on them almost yearly. A 1967 B-body Hemi carburetor pair is different than a 1968 B-body Hemi carburetor pair, so if you're looking for the exact year-correct carbs for your Hemi, you are searching for some very rare parts among a very limited pool of remaining examples. Otherwise, grab some Holley replacements and go nuts.


I've mentioned this before, but I really don't get the Mopar obsession with "numbers matching" cars. I know that originality matters for classic cars, but it seems like Mopar guys are extra obsessive about it. So what if there were only five 71 Hemi Cuda convertibles made from the factory with that particular rear end...you can put that hemi engine in a convertible that came with a 318 and, at least I, wouldn't care that it's not one of those factory cars.

It's cool, but certainly not "OMG, I will pay $2 million extra because it is a numbers matching car."

(I can't remember the exact number, so I used 5 just to illustrate the point).
Everybody who does concours restorations wants numbers-matching, it's not just Mopar. That's a collector's market, not a driver's market, and collectors want rarity and accuracy. If your car is numbers matching and the guy beside you isn't, you car is therefore more rare and desirable. If you have the money to play in that market, those things become important. Folks who don't have those kind of funds don't generally care.


This build is so awesome. I wanna drive over to Alberta just to see it.
If you're ever in the area, drop me a line!
 
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