MCG Expert Panel | Free Restoration, History, & Classic Car Information

MCG Marketplace

Clear

Search

Got Questions?

Ask an Expert

MCG EXPERT PANEL

Woody's 75 Shop Historical 1975-1975 Plymouth - Valiant

1975 Production Numbers

Richard,
I love your column and answers! My father owned a small Chrysler/Plymouth dealership when I was young so I have always loved Mopars, although I’ve never tried to restore any of them. I recently purchased a 1975 Valiant Brougham 2-door with a 318 engine, auto trans. and very few other options. I’ve decoded the fender tag and broadcast sheet and everything seem to be original except the tires and rims (15 inch). I do have the original wire rim wheel covers. My 2 questions: Can you tell me how many 2-door Valiant Broughams were produced in ‘75 and how many came with 318 engines? Also, I can’t find broadcast sheet codes S12, V61, and W86?

Thanks,

Woody

Woody-

Unfortunately, I don’t have production numbers for your car, if I had to guess, I’d say a few thousand, probably half with the 318. Just a guess!

S12 indicates “standard” suspension
V6"X" is a vinyl roof, but the third character should be a letter for a color. Might be a typo.
W86 is 14 X 5.5" wheels

Rick

2 days ago
Jim Wood Mopar Historical 1962-1979 Plymouth

69 RR owner search

Richard, is it possible in North Carolina with a vin number to know who was the first owner? I purchased a RR in 69 new and I might be able to get it back. A friend is trying to help with getting the now owners information. I now live in Alabama. Doe’s Chrysler keep that kind of records? I will have the vin soon I hope.

Jim-

No records of “current owner” were kept back then (by the factory); there was no law requiring them to even TRY to maintain such records.

Current DMV privacy laws in most states are working against you, too, plus many DMVs purge records after “X” years (in NY is is five).

The only hope is real gumshoe work: First, obviously, see if the glove box has any papers (bill of sale, Monroney label, etc.) Failing that, ask the seller whom he bought it from and work backwards. There are online services that, for a few bucks, will track individuals (not cars) and provide contact info, criminal histories, relatives, etc. This is actually scary…

Rick

2 days ago
MCG Garage d4cdd5 My Car 1969-1969 Dodge - Dart

1969 dodge dart gts

Hi I am in the process of buying a 1969 dodge dart gts , how can i tell if its the real deal ? the vin is LS23 which tells its a gts is there any other things i shouls look for ? thank you Frank Nizza

Frank-

If it is being sold as a “matching numbers”, check the VIN on the engine and trans, also on the radiator yoke. Check the data plate carefully to see if all options are present and accounted for, and hope there’s a broadcast sheet available.

Without knowing which engine and powertrain this has, and whether this is a project car, survivor, resto, or resto-mod, there’s not much else I can advise.

Rick

5 days ago
Jupiter General 1968-1968 Dodge - Dart

1968 Dodge Dart GTS Coat Hooks

What is the correct part number for the coat hooks for a ’68 GTS?

GL-

As you likely know, 1968 was the first year that the Federal interior-hazard (and glare) standards took effect — thumbwheel radios, recessed or rocker switches, flat or satin paint, no more bright chrome, etc.

The hooks were 2876976, they were white rigid plastic (nylon?) There were black slip-on soft vinyl covers, P/N was 4121DX9 (black). These were both unchanged for a few years and are easy to find (used)

Rick

8 days ago
Rick's Cuda Garage Restoration 1964-1974 Plymouth - Barracuda

What is your take on the RMS AlterKation Front end

Richard

What is your opinion of going with Aftermarket Front and Rear ends with welded bracing as opposed to a full fledged frame/chassis setup? AND
When is “Mopar Action” returning?

Richard-

Mopar Action is alive and well!

What do you have against the excellent stock setup? Tough to beat it!

I have written extensively re: aftermarket K-members and suspension, here’s a re-cap, touching only on the main points (there are more negatives, esp. the LCA design)…


I have studied these extensively, and had them analyzed by respected engineers. Not one of them come close to meeting anything like factory durability standards. Heim joints, brakes without environmental seals, hubs with no hubcentricity provisions, etc., are major impediments to real street use. Now, let me make this clear: If I were running a drag car, I’d probably install one of these myself. They save a ton of weight, allow easy chassis tuning, provide tons of header clearance, etc. For said drag car, they are absolutely golden.

But for a street driver — by that, I mean a car that sees lots of miles, curb cuts, potholes, etc, — not just an occasional cruise to Mickey Dees — I have extreme reservations. Referring specifically, now, to the AlterKation setup, here are my concerns:

> There is now only one single crossmember tying the front longitudinals together, in place of the factory K-braced design. If anything, as some really expensive engineering / testing time I witnessed recently shows, these cars need MORE rigidity up front, not less. This change also HUGELY reduces crashworthiness.

> There’s no locating device for the K, it can move around (vs. stock tapered locating screws).

> All suspension loads are now carried by those same longitudinals, not the stock T-bar X-member. This is a radical redesign of the car’s front end; I believe that a through-the-firewall roll-cage bar tying into what is now the spring tower would improve this situation significantly.

> Hemi joints! While boots are made for these, there’s no way to lubricate them, street life is typically no more than a few thousand miles. Luckily, they do not typically fail catastrophically.

> No steering pot coupling. With that gone, I fail to see how compensation is made for chassis flex / bumps. I suspect the breakaway plastic pins in the column do just that – break. Somebody needs to explain this to me please.

> The scariest part of the O’Reilly (Al.K.) setup, to me, is the cantilevered outer tie-rod end. Just picture the stresses on this part (the stud or long bolt) should the car slide into, say, a curb or nasty pothole while the steering has some significant input.

> I’m sure all the welds are top quality and well suited to the task. Still, did you ever see a welded suspension component in any stock Mopar? There’s a reason for that.

Of the bolt-in suspension conversion setups for Mopars, clearly the O’Reilly and the (now dead) XV Motorsports are the best. That still does not make either one of them even close to factory durability. XV did, however, much to their credit, a megadollar engineering analysis (Done by Multimatic in Toronto). Still, even XV didn’t do the long-term testing that would be required to sell something like this to an OEM. From an engineering point of view, it’s usually easy to prove a problem, but much more difficult to prove that there’s NO problem. Look back at the Boeing 737 rudder problem and you’ll see what I am referring to.

Here’s what I’m up against, and why I feel compelled to warn my readers about these products: Clearly they are designed for use by knowledgeable, technically-savvy, hands-on “fabricator type” guys. This type of customer can see the shortcomings clearly and will realize what the system is intended for. But as these kits become more widespread, more and more neophyte “duffers” will have them installed at the local gas station, etc., and drive off in blissful ignorance. That’s what I’m trying to prevent. In that same vein, O’Reilly’s instruction book has a clearly worded, bold-headed disclaimer in several spots, warning “off road use only”…and “typically subjected to uses that far exceeds it’s mechanical limits…” and “…not held responsible or liable…” and “…you assume all risks…”.

I hope I have made my point of view clear. This isn’t a personal attack on anybody’s mother, their engineering or fabricating skills, their sphincter or lower intestines, etc. It’s simply an explanation for my rationale for stating that I don’t think these should be sold or used for extended street (or road race) use.

Rick

14 days ago

1975 formula 400 exterior color

I have had two 75 formula 400"s and both are black on black , I know the one has been repainted but I purchased one in 1976 a year old and it was black on black!! pontiac doesnt show that as a exterior color for that year and I seriously doubt the one I purchased a year old was reprayed!! Any input? Geno

Bkack was not available in 75 and Very hard to get in 76 other than on the 50th, so it is puzzling , anything us possible like a dealer having an inside track , but if its from the factory you will have a code 19 on the cowl tag , Rick

18 days ago

1969 Dodge Dart 340 4-speed

While test driving this car, clutch pedal stuck to the floor while shifting at around 5500 rpms. As soon as rpms dropped pedal came up, what’s the cause?

Randy-

I don’t have a crystal ball or X-ray vision, but my best guess is that someone replaced the stock Borg and and Beck “3-finger” clutch with a diaphragm style but failed to remove the overcenter spring and replace it with a return spring (both at the pedal).

Rick

24 days ago

1969 Pontiac Grand Prix

In 1969 Pontiac Grand Prix produced 112K cars, Approx how many do you believe are running & are registered in the USA today ? Do you believe the 69 Grand Prix in the collector hobby is on the rise, flat or declining currently ? Where are the best resources for hard to find parts for 69-70 GPs ?

Market is Flat on your Body Style, Franks Pontiac Parts ,AZ

about 1 month ago

71 RALLY NOVA QUESTION

I HAVE THE FOLLOWING COWL TAG INFO FOR MY 71 NOVA. I AM TRYING TO DETERMINE IF IT IS A TRUE RALLY, BUT I CAN’T SEEM TO FIND OUT WHAT THE LAST 6 DIGITS ON LAST LINE STAND FOR. PLEASE HELP!

ST 71 11427WRN109725 – BODY
TR 750 67 67 – PAINT
03A A 1 1019
ANY HELP ON THIS WILL BE GREATLY APPRECIATED. THE “A 1 1019” DIGITS ARE WHAT I CAN’T SEEM TO FIND WHAT THIS CODE MEANS..

Sorry im the Pontiac Guy

about 1 month ago

Changing original color

I am doing a frame off resto on a 69 gto base 400 4 speed car has 40k original miles this is a numbers matching car color code is 63 champagne what impact do I have on the value if I change color to say. 69 Pontaic Liberty blue

Thanks

That’s a Tough one ,Blue much more appealing but Original is Always Best for Value, I would say it would hurt Value approx. $5,000

about 1 month ago
Rick's Cuda Garage Restoration 1970-1974 Plymouth - Barracuda

Repro Body Shells for RestoMod

Richard (Rick)

With the dwindling supply of rebuildable Barracuda/Cuda bodies, can a “popular” aftermarket company’s repro body of a 70 Challenger be retrofitted with fenders, Door Skins, Quarter Panels to be made to look like a 70-74 Barracuda/Cuda

My name is also,
Richard (Rick)

Richard-

It would be a helluva job. The two cars shared NOT ONE exterior body panel, and even the wheelbase was different (by 3"). Furthermore, by the time you have it delivered, the Dynacorn shell is almost $20K.

To my mind, finding a decent slant six or 318 ’72-74 Cuda makes more sense.

Rick

about 1 month ago
Prev 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 54 55