Hugger; From Tainted.... To Extraordinary!!! - ModernCamaro.com - 5th Generation Camaro Enthusiasts
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post #1 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
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Smile Hugger; From Tainted.... To Extraordinary!!!

I started a build thread on Jade; however, I didn't think about doing it until after Jade was completed. With that being said, I've decided to start a build on "Hugger" as I build her...

I hope you guys enjoy her and I'll update this thread as more work gets done, but as of now, we are in the process of replacing and repairing structural integrity components, so work is slow and tedious.

Quick back brief on Hugger. I purchased this car from my brother, who was going to do a frame-off restoration on her. Long story short, a restoration shop in Indiana took advantage of him and screwed him really bad. After a 18-month battle, the car left many scars and tears that my brother and his wife could no longer take. So, my brother and I worked out a deal and now I have this 3-owner car that I am completely restoring from the ground up. I went to Missouri in March to pick her up and tore into her immediately. She was in worse shape than I expected, but like anything, where there's a will, there is a way!!

Here's some of the details on her: She's a true 1969 RS Camaro with the trim code X-11, which means she is also a true SS-350 car. I do not possess the original block; however, the motor is date coded for 1969. She's a true "Hugger Orange" Camaro, with a factor optioned Black Vinyl Top. She was also ordered from the factor with Power Steering, Power Disc Brakes, Full Console & Gauges, 12-Bolt Rear-End and Black "SS" Stripes. One of the most unique features of Hugger is; she was ordered with Orange Houndstooth Interior and a Folding Rear Seat. The Orange Houndstooth is extremely rare, as that was an option for the Anniversary Pace Car and Convertibles only. Very few "coupes" got that option. Something else that is extremely rare is she has squirters for not only the Windshield, but also for the Headlights!! I've never seen that option on ANY Camaro.... And best of all, since she's an RS, she has my favorite Hide-Away Headlights!!

Enjoy some of the pics and let me know what ya'll think.....
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post #2 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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First was removing all the brand new, custom original interior.... Second was removing the engine and transmission.... Then loading her up for SandBlasting!!

The pictures I posted with intorduction were all taken after sandblasting.
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post #3 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 11:24 AM
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Now that's a project!! I was so close to pulling the trigger on something similar but you know what happened instead...

Congrats on the find and best of luck with it. What are your plans for all the rusted/damaged areas? Repro panels/pieces or hammer out weld-in pieces?

And please tell me you are going to get it back down to stock ride height! I see too many with heavy duty springs and tall tires going down the road....

Chuck
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post #4 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Chuck, thanks man!! It wasn't a project that I wanted, but after my brother bought a 2003 50th Anniversary ZO6 Corvette with 9K original miles on it, he no longer had any plans for the 69. With all the history, the rare options, I couldn't pass up the deal he gave me.

The car is going to keep maintain its 12-Bolt Rear-End with the 4.10:1 gears in it. I just purchased a complete True Fit Kit from American Powertrain to convert the car over to a 5-Speed. Like Jade, Hugger is going to run a TKO-600 with a .64:1 Overdrive. The clutch, pressure plate, slave cylinder, and master cylinder is all hydraulic. The drive train is going to be almost identical to Jade's.

The rest of the car is going to maintain its originality, to include the suspension, brakes and interior. In fact, my brother spent over $6K on the brand new Houndstooth interior. I'm just not sure what I'm doing to do with the engine just yet. It all depends on what it has internally, once I break it down.

As far as sheet metal, most of it is all being replaced by GM OEM stamped panels. I was extremely picky when it came to ordering new metal for the car. Thus far, I'm replacing both rear full quarters, inner and outer wheel tubs, both entire frame rails, the entire trunk pan, the trunk extensions, the rear inner and outer valance panel and the trunk deck lid. I'm also replacing the metal dash and the front lower cowl panels.

She's up on the frame jig now. Here's a few more pics...
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post #5 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 02:40 PM
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Now thats what I like to see......A car going from rust bucket to rockin road warrior!!!! I see in the pics where your bro got the shaft fom his rebuilder! Where in Mo is your bro and who was the rebuilder? Just so we-ins up in these parts know who to stay way from!!! Can't wait till she's done. Good luck!

BTW...You goin back with the vinyl roof or full paint?

Last edited by maroluvr; 06-12-2013 at 02:43 PM.
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post #6 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maroluvr View Post
Where in Mo is your bro and who was the rebuilder? Just so we-ins up in these parts know who to stay way from!!!

BTW...You goin back with the vinyl roof or full paint?
To answer your question, both my brother and I are from Jefferson City. He purchased this car not far from the Lake of the Ozarks. It was originally purchased from your neck of the woods. A lady ordered it from the Chevrolet Dealership in Overland Park, KS. Her husband worked for the dealer, which is how she was able to get the Orange Houndstooth Interior.

The gentleman's name that "restored" this car is Matt Layman, out of Akron, Indiana. He's nowhere near Missouri, so you have nothing to worry about. On top of that, I'm pretty sure his entire business is going under.

Since it's an original black vinyl roof car, I'm going back with one. At first I wasn't going too, but after looking at more and more 69 Hugger Orange Camaro's, the black top stuck with me. Not only that, but they seem to bring more money at the auctions.
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post #7 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 03:33 PM
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Well seeing that she originated in the KC area, I think you need to "Bring her home" when she's done! LOL
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post #8 of 38 Old 06-12-2013, 08:41 PM
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Awesome will be following the progress for sure

2014 2LT/RS with spring edition package. Proud Litho Owner #28.
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post #9 of 38 Old 06-14-2013, 01:22 PM Thread Starter
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Update

Well, we've managed to cut away the entire rear of the car. Here are some updated pictures.

The first picture is showing the entire rear of the car cut away, no trunk, inner & outer wheel wells, and no rear valance.

The second picture shows that we've cut the quarters away and temporary installed the trunk pan for alignment.

The third picture shows the inner wheelhousing getting tacked to the trunk pan.

The fourth picture shows the wheelhousing and the trunk pan together.

It's so tedious to make sure every panel aligns perfectly before moving on to the next panel. I'm not sure how much we'll get done on her this weekend, as it's Father's Day. But it's one day at a time.
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post #10 of 38 Old 06-17-2013, 10:02 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Another Update

So, there was quite a bit of work accomplished last week and this weekend.

The first two pictures show that the frame rails are fully installed and aligned. Not only that, but the wheel-housings are completely installed. All the welds are smoothed out, and we are starting to coat the underneath with POR-15. If you've never used it, it is awesome!! I highly recommend it!!

The next three pictures show that the quarter panels are tacked into place, but are not fully welded in. We are still working on getting better than new factory gaps and trimming the panels for a perfect fit. The tail panel section is also coming together nicely.

The last two pictures show that the trunk and frame rails are completely done and that the wheel-housings are installed. Since the picture is looking up at the rear, you can see the amount of detail that I'm putting into this build.

Once the quarters and tail panel section are completely done, it'll be time to move on to the front of Hugger. She's coming together like a puzzle...

Hope you guys enjoy the updates. It's amazing seeing this car come together. She's gonna be pretty special when she's done!!
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