Cars > Jons69RT’s Garage
About Jons69RT’s Garage
About me and my passion for cars
What's to say????????
I'm 46, my Dad is the youngest of 6 brothers and they were all Mopar people. I grew up watching the Dukes of Hazzard so I'm sure it comes as no shock that I am a big Mopar "B Body" fan. No, I did NOT want the Gerneral Lee but I sure do love the late 60's Chargers.
After I retired from the Air Force (Late 2002) I started thinking hard about getting a classic car. I really set out looking for a Charger (truly didnt' even know what a "Coronet" was at that point. After looking and studying for a while though the Coronet really started growing on me.
Finally, I found a classic car dealer online and he had this Coronet with 87K miles for sale. I don't know - still so impulsive with just about all the cars I've ever bought - Wow, I have some stories! For me though, I was completely hooked the moment he turned the key and I hearad that 440 fire up and rumbling out the old rusted up Hedman headers. So, $20K in August of 2003 didn't seem like that much money after a military career had evolved into gov't contracting so "Where do I sign?".
What I didn't realize at the time was that the car is indeed Numbers Matching and the body at least was in really good condition. The "Dealer" obviously knew how to play the game - I dont' think the engine or transmissioin had even been redone and the interior also was very dried out but all I heard was that 440 and thinking this could be mine.
Anyway, the transmission started falling apart a couple months later so I made arrangements to get it rebuilt and since I was already taking the tranny out, I figured I might as well have the engine redone. I was not really planning on doing the body at that time but my (then 15 1/2 yo) son came to my rescue and went for a little joy ride. Yeah - not good. I came home to find that big a$$ up in the air with the front end dropped down in a ditch! You ever seen a B Body nose down in a ditch? Not pretty!!!!! Beautiful white car with the red trunk stripe - nose down in a ditch! My son survived somehow - we performed magic trick together. I said "Get out of my sight" and he disappeared before my eyes. Swear to God! hehe
Anyway, I then had a reason to get the body done too so we got it back to the garage and took her apart. Engine and Transmission went out on a little utility trailer and we stripped the interior (Really wish I'd taken out all the glass and the dashboard too!) and shoved the body up on another trailer. Several months later (about March/April 2004) I was eagerly putting her all back together. I had a lot of help - I'm mopstly a wannabe' mechanic - the basic mechanical stuff isn't so bad but I really did not trust myself to trun the key before asking some other guys (like my Dad) to look over what I'd done and help me out a bit. OMG - the anxiety with turning that key the first time on the rebuilt engine! Wow, the fear about the sounds and the smells and all when the engine is breaking in.
Even being numbers matching, I had a few tweaks done with the internals on the engine - Mopar Performance crank, fairly aggressive cam, Keith Black pistons - don's ask for details - I got all the paperwork at home. That's a bit beyond my experience level. The 727 tranny was also tweaked a bit with a shift kit and JW Torque Converter. I have a few bolt-ons like New Hooker supercomp headers, Edelbrock RPM intake, Mopar Perfromance valve covers and a Speed Demon 750 carb but "most" of the "Original" stuff is at home and I'm strongly considering putting it all back on.
I dunno', the guy that did the engine said that she shoudl be pushing close to 500 HP and 500ft. pounds. I don't know - she is fun but I don't do any serious street or track racing. Mostly just my "Mid-Life Crisis" cruiser! Of course, we had to sepnda litle money (about $2K) on a real sound system and I didnt' like the idea of cutting the front doors to install speakers but there just ins't anywhere else to put speakers in a B Body! I do so love to rumble around town though terrorizing all the teenyboppers with their tuners! Yeah, Yeah I know - they can be really high performance and special cars as well but for me, it is nowhere near the same.
4+ years later - I've really gotten lazy and I'm swearing to myself that she's going to get some serious TLC this coming winter. Maybe a real good performance tune-up and whatever tweaks need to be done on the drivetrain. The body of course has a few nicks and dings associated with being a real "Driver".
I really regret getting rid of that old Dodge A-100 van! The A-100 is of course the short wheel base and mine was pretty rare in the sense that it didn't have side doors or windows. So, for a teenager in the late 70's? Oh yeah, the interior was done even with my very modest budget back then. Nice insulation, plywood and carpetting ann done, homemade overheada console and a nice sound system, the one way reflecting privacy screens in the rear door windows and a wall built behind the front seats for "Privacy" - You know what I mean!!!!!!
Love to have that old van back though. That thing had an incredibly short drive shaft. My Dad still has one of the older smaller Hemis (331 right?). He always wanted to just remove the driveshaft altogether - move the Engine and Tranny back a little further and jsut yoke it right into the rear. I could never do something like that on my own but it sure did (still does!) sound like a fun project.
My first car
67 Dodge A-100 Van
Car I wish I still had
67 Dodge A-100 Van
My dream car
Numbers matching 69 Dodge Coronet R/T w/ 426 Hemi, Convertible, 4 Spd. etc.
Car clubs I’m in
Valley Cruisers of Winchester (Winchester, Va.)
- Type of racing: None really
- Driver: Don't follow racing
- Driving song: I'll have to think about it
- Car movie: I'll have to think about it also and surprisingly as much as I am not a big Mustang fan, Gone in 60 Seconds is definitely high up on my list.
- Car book: Have to think about that one too.
- Car magazine: Mopar Muscle
- Car game: I can't even think of any right now.
— Profile last updated: Aug 6, 2008
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