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Readers’ Camaro Rides - June 2014

It's All About You

Jun 25, 2014
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Savings Plan

Chris Gibbany has owned this '78 Z28 for over 20 years and has worked it over into her vision of the perfect Camaro. As she told us, "Ever since I was a kid I've been obsessed with cars, especially Camaros and Corvettes. I collected them in Hot Wheels, built models, and dreamed of one day owning a late second-gen Camaro. When I was a kid we were offered a candy bar a day or the money equivalent. I always took the money, but my brother always took the candy bar. I had a savings account as a young kid and collected aluminum cans to earn more cash. I even took care of all of my clothes and toys so that when I got tired of them I could sell them at a yard sale."

Throughout college Chris continued to find creative ways to save, and in 1992 it paid off when she was able to buy a '78 LT, and a year later this '78 Z28. It was rough, but it had new paint. Unfortunately, the paint turned out to be sketchy and the truck tires it wore kept the top speed below 35 mph. Since then the ride has been repainted and the worn interior replaced. Eventually the sluggish 327 was replaced with a hot rodded 383 stroker. Backing up the small-block is a TH350 trans, which spins back to a 10-bolt with 4.10 gears. With a little help from her husband, Chris did most of the work herself. The pair even decided to start up a local Camaro club. And all of this on a budget so slim that it goes to show that anyone can cruise a bitchin Camaro if they put forth the effort.

The one question we have is, what did her brother end up driving?

Black Widow

About 10 years ago, the Pro Touring template was clearly laid out for muscle car enthusiasts to get the best street and track performance out of their classic muscle cars. From there, many Camaro owners and builders took the "layout" and put their own touches on their rides. Variations were many, but the main input followed a few simple rules: gobs of horsepower, road-gripping suspension, and a relatively comfortable ride.


Ken Thwaits' interpretation fits precisely within the boundaries of Pro Touring goodness as an LS7 rests between the 'rails backed by a Tremec TKO 600 transmission. A DSE front subframe and QUADRALink rear suspension system armed with Koni coilover shocks control the ride, while a Moser 12-bolt rearend contains the engine's aggression. Wilwood 14-inch rotors and six-piston binders help the BFG rubber scrub off speed in a jiffy. Recaro seats, Momo steering wheel, and Auto Meter Ultra Lite II gauges add to the interior's performance flavor.

This '69 combines all the goodies that make up one killer g-Machine, and we know Ken gets plenty of smiles per hour.

Military Bound

Mike Ream started cutting grass and performing other odd jobs in order to buy parts for his '87 IROC-Z. That's pretty much the story when you are only 15 years old—you do what you can to support your passion, no matter how long it takes. At age 17 he started on the bodywork portion, but the build was soon interrupted again. Only this time it was to serve his county in the Marine Corps. After taking a year off from working on the Camaro, his gig in the Corps allowed him to save enough money to get the car an engine and upgraded parts. It's now armed with a 350ci small-block bored 0.060-over with a COMP Thumpr cam, Corvette heads, Edelbrock intake with 700-cfm carb, and long-tube headers, with more upgrades to come.


Bill Pfannenstiel at Flatliner Hot Rod Shop in Thornton, Colorado, sprayed the red and black paint theme. But, Mike tells us, "my next plan is to go with a military paint theme to show support for my brothers and sisters serving this great nation."

Submit readers' rides photos and information to camaroperformers@sorc.com.



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