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Old 10-05-2020, 01:41 PM
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Default L78 M22 Pace Car Restoration

I purchased this car from a member here (thanks Max). The "for sale" thread was "69 Indy L-78 M-22 Project". Since purchasing the car, I have been able to locate the selling dealer (thanks to NCRS) and all previous owners. The car body is on a rotisserie and being restored by James - a member here. Drive train is restored and awaiting completion of body work.

This is a new thread to post pictures of the restoration progress. One of my concerns was that the center of the dash panel had rust right up through the first two speaker grille slots. Thankfully, the outboard dash areas, including the VIN area, were good, so we really didn't want to replace the panel (re-pro panels are not accurate, plus we didn't want to ever remove the VIN tag). James has done an amazing job piecing in fresh metal and even making part of the speaker grille cut-out with a hand file!

I'll leave it to James to post pictures as the restoration progresses.
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Old 10-05-2020, 02:11 PM
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Canít wait! Bring it on!!!
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Old 10-05-2020, 02:15 PM
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Bruce- I'm looking forward to seeing the picts and would love to see the car in progress if possible- let me know if I can help with anything needed or you need to match details on one one of our unrestored survivors
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Old 10-13-2020, 01:15 PM
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James does pretty amazing work. One of the clues that a dash has been replaced (and there fore the VIN may have been removed) is that the speaker grille is incorrect on the repro repair dash parts. So, it was very important that the original dash be repaired and not replaced on this Pace Car. I have to admit, however, that I've never seen the actual stamped slots for the speaker repaired when they were rusted up through the second set of slots (as was the case here). James is an artist with the TIG!
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Old 10-13-2020, 01:53 PM
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On the repro, it's the window for the VIN tag that is incorrect. An original dash window has a rolled lip and radiused corners; repro does not have the lip and corners are square.

Back in the '80s, the best way to repair a rusty dash was to buy a '75-'79 GM X Body dash and cut the top off; bottom portion was different. Later in the '70s, they changed the speaker grille to an oval configuration by removing some of the louvers. The missing louvers can be easily added.
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Old 10-13-2020, 03:20 PM
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If you look carefully at my original stamped speaker grille above, you will note that the louvers are not flat. The stamping die pulled one edge of each louvre up slightly when it withdrew for the stamping. Reproductions do not have this characteristic. The perfectly flat louvers on the reproductions are a dead giveaway, as is the VIN area. Bottom line - IMO, its worth the effort to save all possible original metal :-)
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Old 10-31-2020, 05:34 AM
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The actual speaker grille slots on the repro do not line up the same as the originals, the repro slots are at an angle between the two defroster ducts.
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Old 10-31-2020, 03:19 PM
Mr.Nickey Nova Mr.Nickey Nova is offline
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Is that foam used by the factory?? If so, no wonder the dashes rust out so bad in that area.
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Old 10-31-2020, 10:18 PM
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Yes Foam is used by the factory, AND yes if the foam is BREACHED with water It will cause issues, the care taken with these cars is above and beyond what ANYONE considered GOOD care 30 years ago and thus the possibility of the foam becoming water saturated is slim to none..
FWIW IF you do not use foam or something in the area to act as a damper you could have issues with Vibration and or harmonic DRONING.
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Old 11-01-2020, 10:05 AM
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Not meaning to hijack, but seems relevant here - if you had to repair rust at the front edge of the dash where that foam sits, what foam product and material installation method/sequence would you recommend for the sheetmetal James? Looks from the runs pictured that the factory mated the panels together with the foam still ‘flowable’?
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