Matt's 1971 Camaro

Discussion in 'Project Progress' started by Matilda71, Apr 7, 2015.

  1. Matilda71

    Matilda71 New Member

    Apr 7, 2015
    Woodbridge, Virginia
    Hello all!

    I thought I would join up here and show you guys the beginning stages of my project. I've been drooling over this car ever since I looked at it. She may not be a looker right now, but i'm hoping when me and my dad are done, she'll be back like she was.

    A little back story on the car. My dad purchased the car in November '76, when he was 15. He has always been into cars, especially Camaro's. I don't remember what he paid for it. (I'll try to find the ad in the old newspaper. Funny story, the paper was published on November 13th 1976, which is my birthday, only not the right year.) He named her Matilda, and still calls her it to this day. She started out as a base model with a V8, but he soon changed that. Through the years of him owning it, he added everything that came with the Z28, head's/cam etc. The only thing that is currently missing is the 4 bolt main. Currently it just has the 2 bolt. (Speaking of, if anyone knows where I can find a 4 bolt, that would be fantastic.)

    During the summer in the mid-late '80's, the car was involved in a big accident, and was totaled. Fortunately, he didn't scrap the car and rebuilt it yet again from the ground up. Here's a picture during the early '90s of the car:


    I just realized, I have no idea why my mom would be leaning on the hood. That's actually pretty funny, as he doesn't appreciate anyone that leans on any car.

    Unfortunately, this story doesn't have a happy ending yet. I'll skip over the boring stuff. My parents split up in the mid '90s, and Matilda sat in my grandparents barn for the next several years. Early '00s, the car moved from the barn to his backyard, where it still sits today. Here are a couple of pictures from around 2007, the last pictures I took of the car:



    In 2007, being like every other obnoxious 17 year old, I pestered him get the car from the back yard, and at least have us take a look at it. We hooked it up to a tractor, and pulled it out. We hosed the air cleaner out, sprayed some ether in it, and jumped it. Started right up, and ran strong. Not bad for a car that had been sitting for so long. He wanted to take it for a test drive, so he pulled out onto the road. The smell of burnt rubber, and the sound of the engine was amazing. She still has life in her.

    He put the car back in that spot, and left it there. Fast forward to now, and I guess after years of asking about it and telling him I'm just going to take it, have worked. I have began planning out what exactly needs to be done to the car, trying to research every possible thing I can. It doesn't seem that there is that much rust on the car, only surface, but only time will tell. Even if we have to tear off every body panel, I can't wait to see what she'll look like.

    That's my story, hopefully you liked it. I can't wait to post pictures of my progress when we start. I'm definitely going to be sticking around and learning as much as I can. These cars are way different than my 2007 Mustang, which is what i'm used to. I didn't know much about that, but i've learned a lot. Hopefully I can do the same with this one!

    One last note, I know how the Mustang community acts when cars are misbadged. I don't know how the Camaro community is, but I hope it's different. I still love the car no matter what, as it's been in the family longer than me.
    7/3-SplitRS likes this.
  2. ultimateoffroad

    ultimateoffroad Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Feb 21, 2010
    Friendswood, TX
    Looks like a good project. Keep us updated.
  3. stevenp3762

    stevenp3762 BANNED

    Feb 7, 2013
    bradenton fl.
    Welcome! That's a great car, your going to love it!!! Lots of assistance here. Steven.
  4. Matilda71

    Matilda71 New Member

    Apr 7, 2015
    Woodbridge, Virginia
    Thanks for the welcome guys! I'll keep you updated when the car gets pulled into a garage and starts getting worked on. As for right now, I'm just trying to price things out. I'm in the middle of trying to buy my first house, so hopefully i'll have the space to put her.

    This was our family car and we drove it everywhere. No doubt that I'm going to love it!! Though the power of the engine does have my nervous. Haha. My truck is a little 4 banger, and the Mustang is only pushing around 200 to the wheels. This is going to be a totally different animal for me.
  5. motionwannabe

    motionwannabe Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Good luck with your project!!:bowtie:
  6. Da-bigguy

    Da-bigguy Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Jan 19, 2010
    Cypress, TX
    Welcome! It is always nice to see another 71 on its way to being restored and back on the road! Keep us posted with progress including lots of pics!
  7. Matilda71

    Matilda71 New Member

    Apr 7, 2015
    Woodbridge, Virginia
    Thanks for the more warm welcomes everyone!

    I'll definitely keep this thread as updated as can be. Good thing I love to take pictures of everything I do. :D

    Currently, there is a '77 Mercedes in the garage getting a complete restore. As soon as that's done, we'll get started with the big project! I'm estimating that it won't be until summer. Until then, I'll just read and look at all the beautiful pictures of everyone's build threads.

    As far as rebuild kits are concerned, are some better than others? As far as internals go, I know the pistons have the flat top, instead of the dome. Not sure of the advantages to this, but I'd like to stick with that if possible.

    Was there a difference between a base V8 cam and the Z28 cam?

    I don't need a powerhouse for this car. My main goals currently are for it to look and sound nice. I'm unsure of what the Z28 actually sounds like, but I'd like for it to have the old school muscle/aggressive idle sound, without killing it to be a nice weekend driver.
  8. cubangt

    cubangt Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    Katy, Tx
    Welcome, and great looking project, def cant wait to see more pics..
  9. FatnLow

    FatnLow Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2003
    Montgomery, AL US
    Welcome. I'm looking forward to progress and pics.
  10. brooksman9

    brooksman9 Veteran Member

    Jun 10, 2007
    Olive Branch, MS
    Welcome Matt (no pun intended). Cool story to your project. Look forward to seeing your progress.

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