by Sean Mattingly.
1969 GTO Convertible Parking Lot
Biggest GTO image collection anywhere!
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CLICK-> Limelight Green 1969 LeMans convertible, rear end view. Look at the bottom of the bumper. By the way, if you ever have to tow one of these cars, don't put a tow hook under the delicate lip of the bumper.
CLICK-> Limelight Green 1969 LeMans convertible, another left side view. This car appears to be in very good shape. But... Adam begins a frame-off restoration on it. He's got the front side marker light and lower rocker chrome removed.
CLICK-> The first step in a frame-off restoration is to disassemble the car. Adam removes the lower valance on his 1969 LeMans convertible.
CLICK-> Adam has the car jacked up so that the parts he is removing are at a comfortable level. It is important to bag and mark all the clips and bolts used to attach parts to the car. Do not throw anything away as you might not find a replacement when you put it back together.
CLICK-> The rear side of Adam's bumper has lots of surface rust. It probably hasn't been off the car since it was assembled in 1969.
CLICK-> Here's the radiator core support on Adam's 69 LeMans convertible.
CLICK-> Here's a close-up of the brakes on Adam's 1969 LeMans convertible. Drum brakes on all four corners were standard in 1969. You can see all the typical parts here. At the top is the wheel cylinder. Its job is to push out on the brake shoes when you want to stop. The springs pull the hoes back toward the middle when you let off the brake pedal. At the bottom of the photo, see the thing that looks like a gear. It's brake adjuster. You can turn that screw in and out to adjust the position of the brake shoes. The adjuster self-adjusts to some degree as the shoes wear down. How many miles do you think these brake shoes (see far right and far left) have left on them? Judging from their thickness, I'd guess they'd last another 10,000 miles or so.
CLICK-> Adam takes off the rear bumper, tail lights, and trunk lid. This makes the car look a whole lot different. There's a certain "point of no return" pictured here. When you take a car that's road worthy and disassemble it to this degree, you know it's going to take a lot of commitment to return the car to the road someday. Will this be a successful project? Hopefully, this will NOT be that "point of no return".
CLICK-> Front fenders are removed.
CLICK-> Frame is separated from the body and the front suspension is disassembled.
CLICK-> Another shot of the front suspension disassembly.
CLICK-> A shot of the rear suspension and frame as Adam tears it down. There is a lot of surface rust to contend with. Now you can also observe why a person would want to do a frame-off restoration. With the body separated from these frame parts, it easier to access all sides of the frame rails for thorough cleaning and painting.
CLICK-> Robert Deis is unloading his Crystal Turquoise 1969 GTO convertible at the 2004 GTOAA International Convention in Detriot, Michigan.
CLICK-> Crystal Turquoise 1969 GTO convertible in the GTO lineup. Robert's GTO took the Bronze award in his class.
CLICK-> Crystal Turquoise 1969 GTO convertible, right rear view.
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