Ultimate Third Gen
The only constant thing about car builds is change. Such was the case with Joe Lendway's 1987 IROC Camaro. What was originally heading in a drag race direction eventually morphed into something that will be able to slice corner apexes as well as blast down the 1320. To help make Joe's vision a reality, he enlisted the talents of car builder extraordinaire Troy Trepanier and the team at Rad Rides by Troy.
Joe bought the '87 new and it was well cared for, so Troy had a solid, rust-free starting point for the extreme build. The chassis was heavily stiffened to help hold up to the 1,800hp twin-turbo Nelson Racing 441ci small-block. Ditching the T-tops and adding a custom one-off solid roof were part of this. The stock floors were also ditched to accommodate a full Art Morrison frame utilizing C6 suspension pieces. Detroit Speed Inc. coilover shocks will help keep the 19- and 20-inch Corvette ZR1 rollers in contact with the tarmac. For braking, the team is working on combining ZR1 carbon-ceramic rotors with a combination of 12-piston Alcon and 6-piston Baer calipers.
The Camaro's interior will be light on fluff and heavy on functional race car-inspired touches like a full chrome-moly roll cage and Auto Meter gauges galore. The driver and passenger will be cradled in Recaro comfort, but the rear seat will be removed to accommodate a fuel cell and rockin' audio system. As for exterior bodywork, well, we'll let the photos speak for themselves. To follow along with the build, click on over to www.radrides.com.
Cris Gonzalez, owner of JCG Restorations, figured the best way to test prototype wiz-bang parts and bodywork ideas was to also build a badass Camaro shop car. As Cris tells us, "We use the '69 to come up with different ideas and future billet products. The main focus so far has been on quarter-panel and fender stretch concepts, like seeing how far we can stretch it without losing the iconic '69 body lines." The wide body, or "fat bottom" as Cris calls them, body mods were done on our '68 Camaro project car Track Rat and gives first-gens a much more aggressive look. Cris' '69 will feature JCG's new front subframe, three-link rear suspension, and tons of their billet prototype widgets. Giant Wilwood 14-inch binders will stop the Camaro while a stroked and supercharged LS3, backed up by a Hurst Driveline Conversions T56 Magnum, will help build speed in quick fashion. To knock off weight, carbon-fiber body panels will be employed, and Driverz Inc.'s New Gen mini-lite tribute wheels will help the Camaro nail down a vintage Trans Am look. To see more on this cool build visit www.jcgrestorationandcustoms.com.
Some might remember Colby Donaldson as the runner up in season two of television's Survivor reality show, but to us he's just another dude into Camaros. "I bought this '68 because it was a clean and rust-free SoCal black-plate car with a decent paint job in the only color I was searching for: black. The goal was to slap on a set of drop spindles, lowering springs, some cool wheels, and enjoy it as a driver." Yeah, we've heard that one before.
It wasn't long before serious modifications started taking place. Mini-tubs were added to accommodate the massive rear Boze 20x11 wheels, and because Colby didn't like the look of ultra-low profile tires, he went with 335/35/20 tires. "I may have sacrificed a bit of performance by running a tire that tall, but a lower profile looked too much like an import or an exotic and not a muscle car to me," recalled Colby. The small-block was rebuilt and a 700R4 was added to help deal with California freeway traffic. To nail down the trifecta of good handling, nice ride, and a killer stance, he also installed a full air-spring suspension. The only problem with adding all these cool parts was that they made the "OK" paint job look worse, so he decided to take it to bare metal and reshoot it in black. So much for this being a quick project, but it should be one sweet '69 when done.
Lean Green Machine
Telly Violetto of Montello, Wisconsin, is currently crafting this sweet '68 Camaro. The F-body will employ a C6-based front subframe and rear torque-arm arrangement to help nail the handling duties while a Wegner Motorsports 427 LS engine will slingshot the Camaro in the forward direction. Ringbrothers is supplying their sweet custom hood and deck lid as well as a slew of billet goodies. Rolling stock will consist of 18-inch Forgeline wheels. You can follow along with this build at www.violettoautoworks.com.