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Author Topic: 69 Dodge Charger R/T versus SE  (Read 2842 times)
jrcrh6
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« on: July 15, 2009, 03:47:25 PM »

I am looking to restore a 69 Dodge Charger as a gift for my dad.  When I asked him some questions about his car, he told me it was a 69 Charger R/T with a 383 and an auto trans.  With the order form that was posted on another thread, this doesn't seem possible unless the engine was replaced before my dad bought the car in '74.

I can do one of two things.  I can take a base Charger or an R/T, put in a 383 and use the R/T emblems/tailstripes and other R/T specific parts to make it similar to what he remembers having, or I can take an R/T and restore it to make it a true R/T.  Since I can't ask him (he has no idea I am doing this), I wanted to get opinions as to which you would prefer, a car like the one you had as a kid (same color, same interior, same size engine, etc.) or a car that was retored to its original specs?

In addition, I having been offered a 69 Charger SE (not a R/T SE) that is a rollingshell.  The floor and trunk pans are in decent shape, there is minor rust on the lower quarter panels.  What is a reasonable price for this car?  Can it be turned into an R/T?  The owner sent me pics, but I can't shrink the file size enough to post them.

Any assistance is appreciated.  Thanks.
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Neal_J
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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2009, 04:43:15 PM »

As you suspect, true R/Ts had either a 440 or a 426, not a base engine.   Were I your Pop, I would want the original drivetrain, interior & color combination.  My two cents...
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1969chargerrtse
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2009, 05:30:49 AM »

I am looking to restore a 69 Dodge Charger as a gift for my dad.  When I asked him some questions about his car, he told me it was a 69 Charger R/T with a 383 and an auto trans.  With the order form that was posted on another thread, this doesn't seem possible unless the engine was replaced before my dad bought the car in '74.

I can do one of two things.  I can take a base Charger or an R/T, put in a 383 and use the R/T emblems/tailstripes and other R/T specific parts to make it similar to what he remembers having, or I can take an R/T and restore it to make it a true R/T.  Since I can't ask him (he has no idea I am doing this), I wanted to get opinions as to which you would prefer, a car like the one you had as a kid (same color, same interior, same size engine, etc.) or a car that was retored to its original specs?

In addition, I having been offered a 69 Charger SE (not a R/T SE) that is a rollingshell.  The floor and trunk pans are in decent shape, there is minor rust on the lower quarter panels.  What is a reasonable price for this car?  Can it be turned into an R/T?  The owner sent me pics, but I can't shrink the file size enough to post them.

Any assistance is appreciated.  Thanks.
I use the " paint " option to shrink mine.  Just go to " stretch/skew " under  " Image " and type in something like 35 in each box and resize it.

I would do the standard charger with a 383, and make it a R/T clone.  That's a hard one to answer?
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Troy
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« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2009, 08:51:54 AM »

You couldn't get an R/T with a 383. So, the first question is: did your dad have a 383 car (fairly common) or an R/T? If you want to get him what he had that's the place to start. However, he may appreciate an R/T now but it's going to cost you more.

Honestly, I just went through this same scenario with my dad. Over time, tastes change. The car he had and remembers well isn't the car he would have purchased today so I ended up getting him the car that he wanted - not what he had. Also, I wasn't sure how much time I had so the important thing was to get a car we could enjoy (not building, driving). Starting a big restoration project (and keeping it a secret) means you'll have less time to share it with your dad. Also, if you buy a "driver" 383 car and he wants to build it his way you haven't already spent the money. This is where shows some of the reality tv shows screw up - they build cars in ways the owners never would have. Honestly, my dad doesn't care about numbers - he loves to drive and I wanted to let him experience the fun times from his past without worrying about a fresh (expensive) restoration (since it would sit in the garage). Your dad may be different. I did get his favorite color but I think he'd have appreciated anything - except maybe red. I actually ended up with a rarer car than I wanted but I drove it home. We'll fix it up as time allows.

So, my recommendation (as always) is to but the most solid, most complete car that you can. That SE sounds like a good start since most people get bogged down on the body work (I know I do!). Visually, it's easy to add emblems and stripes later on. The R/T suspension and brakes are a little more involved. Was the SE a big block car (383) to begin with? If so you'll at least have bigger torsion bars. If you swap to a 440 you really should upgrade the suspension to match. The SE was a trim(?) package with wood grain accents and leather seats. Otherwise, all Chargers had roughly the same interior so there aren't any R/T specific parts to worry about. Without pictures - and in this market - it's hard to determine what the car might be worth.

There are several threads on resizing pictures in the Help section.

Troy
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69bronzeT5
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'69 Charger- owned since 1998


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« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2009, 12:15:07 PM »

Well, if it helps....my dad and me are possibly going to look at his old '69 GTO he had for about 10 years. It was blue w/ blue interior and Cragars. I assumed if he bought it back, he would put it back to that BUT he said he would paint it the original steel blue w/ blue interior, put the original white vinyl top back on and factory Pontiac Rallys. So, he picked original over what his looked like.
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1969 Charger 383-4bbl auto
1970 Coronet 500 318-2bbl auto
1973 Duster 318-4bbl auto
2004 SRT-4 2.4 Turbo 5 speed
2008 Challenger SRT8 6.1 Hemi #2036/6400
jrcrh6
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« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2009, 11:32:24 PM »

Sorry in advance for the long message.

Thanks for all of the advice so far.  To provide more info, my Dad has a background in restoring tractors in his twenties and thirties, so would have the knowledge to restore the car however he wanted to.  While I would love to do the restoration with him, I go to college 3 1/2 hrs away and only make it home three or four times a year.  My parents are currently building a new house as well as planning major renovations to their current home.  As such, my dad hasn't had time to start the restoration of the exact tractor that he learned to drive on, which he purchased two years ago.  Further, he is planning on buying the exact tractor that his grandfather used.  As you probably noticed, there is a trend here, he wants to own the exact items that had an impact on him when he was a teenager.

While I would love to track down his actual Charger, I have no idea how to go about that.  The next best option, in my opinion, would be to build a car that looks and drives like the car he had as a teenager. With that in mind, I could purchase a car that needs restoration and give it to him as a present unrestored, but I don't think he would be willing to take the time or money to restore the car right now.  Another option is for me to buy the car and begin the restoration process until I reach the point that I need to know what he would want done.  It will take me years to be able to afford to get the car restored to the point that I need info on how he wants the car completed.

What would you guys want, the car given to you to restore when you get around to it, or the car to be undergoing restoration w/o your knowledge so that when you get it, it is close to being ready to go?

Also, what are your feelings about an R/T clone versus finding an actual R/T to restore?

The pictures of the 69 Charger SE are below.  To me, it looks like both quarter panels need to be replaces, as well as a the front driver's fender patched just forward of the wheel well.  What is a reasonable price for this car?  Thanks again.Sorry in advance for the long message.

Thanks for all of the advice so far.  To provide more info, my Dad has a background in restoring tractors in his twenties and thirties, so would have the knowledge to restore the car however he wanted to.  While I would love to do the restoration with him, I go to college 3 1/2 hrs away and only make it home three or four times a year.  My parents are currently building a new house as well as planning major renovations to their current home.  As such, my dad hasn't had time to start the restoration of the exact tractor that he learned to drive on, which he purchased two years ago.  Further, he is planning on buying the exact tractor that his grandfather used.  As you probably noticed, there is a trend here, he wants to own the exact items that had an impact on him when he was a teenager.

While I would love to track down his actual Charger, I have no idea how to go about that.  The next best option, in my opinion, would be to build a car that looks and drives like the car he had as a teenager. With that in mind, I could purchase a car that needs restoration and give it to him as a present unrestored, but I don't think he would be willing to take the time or money to restore the car right now.  Another option is for me to buy the car and begin the restoration process until I reach the point that I need to know what he would want done.  It will take me years to be able to afford to get the car restored to the point that I need info on how he wants the car completed.

What would you guys want, the car given to you to restore when you get around to it, or the car to be undergoing restoration w/o your knowledge so that when you get it, it is close to being ready to go?

Also, what are your feelings about an R/T clone versus finding an actual R/T to restore?

The pictures of the 69 Charger SE are below.  To me, it looks like both quarter panels need to be replaces, as well as a the front driver's fender patched just forward of the wheel well.  What is a reasonable price for this car?  Thanks again.


* asdfghjkl.JPG (69.83 KB, 852x639 - viewed 587 times.)

* xswzaq.JPG (178.56 KB, 1136x852 - viewed 653 times.)

* zaqwsx.JPG (130.08 KB, 1136x852 - viewed 620 times.)

* zxcvbnm.JPG (169.84 KB, 1023x767 - viewed 662 times.)
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jrcrh6
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« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2009, 11:35:30 PM »

More Pics of the 69 Charger SE

Would you turn this into a R/T Clone or keep it original?


* cderfv.JPG (190.97 KB, 1019x764 - viewed 583 times.)

* lkjhgfdsa.JPG (177.91 KB, 1003x753 - viewed 749 times.)

* poiuytrewq.JPG (184.33 KB, 1023x767 - viewed 1276 times.)

* qwertyuiop.JPG (170.15 KB, 1136x852 - viewed 715 times.)
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Ghoste
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« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2009, 07:56:08 AM »

I'd keep it pretty much original.  If you want the RT certainly add the 440 and badges if you want but don't tamper with the serial numbers to try and clone an RT too closely.  There is enough of that already. Twocents
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Troy
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« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2009, 08:31:44 AM »

From personal experience, my dad would rather do without the car than see his kid struggling with such a large, time consuming, and expensive project. It's a great gesture for sure and a testament to what your dad means to you. My siblings wanted to have an anniversary party for my parents but that idea got shot down when my parents found out (because of the financial impact it would have on the kids). I agree that it would be beneficial to share in the direction and building process with your dad. I think he'd appreciate you asking for input to create the car the right way.

On to the car... that looks like a column shift, buddy seat, A/C car, with manual brakes. The floors appear amazingly solid for the amount of rust in the quarters. I'd check the rear frame rails very carefully. It will need quarters, outer wheel houses, trunk extensions, probably a rear valence and corners, and at least one patch in the firewall and one in the transmission tunnel. Most all the sheet metal you need is being reproduced at this time but it's still a huge amount of work - especially if you aren't a body man or can't get the work done at a reasonable cost. Is there more to the car (grill, glass, interior, dash, wiring, etc.)? In "as is" condition you're going to spend a lot more finding the rest of the pieces than you will on body work. I probably wouldn't spend more than $2k on the shell (which may even be a stretch depending on how the underside looks). Worry about making an R/T once you get the basics sorted out. The body, interior, and most of the drive train are essentially unchanged between base model cars and R/Ts.

Troy
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ODZKing
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« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2009, 10:07:44 AM »

My  Twocents would be to say restore it as he remembers it.  If you have the availability to make a true R/T, I'd do it.
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bull
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'68 383/2bbl/4spd 1 of 74


« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2009, 09:19:43 PM »

One thing I'll say is that you're going to spend way more money, and obviously time, on a restoration than you would sitting at the computer an hour each night for a year combing the cars-for-sale websites to buy a finished car that's close to what you think he would like.

And before you think about buying a car from a dealer somewhere do a business name search for it on this site.
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Mike DC (formerly miked)
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« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2009, 01:28:24 AM »

 
BTW:  Don't trash those old cast aluminum finned wheels on the rear axle of that project Charger. 

They're 15x8.5" and 10 spokes so they are prime General Lee replica material.  (Nobody is reproducing that exact rim today.)  If you don't know someone doing a GL who wants them locally then flip 'em on Ebay. 

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bull
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'68 383/2bbl/4spd 1 of 74


« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2009, 03:15:13 PM »

 
BTW:  Don't trash those old cast aluminum finned wheels on the rear axle of that project Charger. 

They're 15x8.5" and 10 spokes so they are prime General Lee replica material.  (Nobody is reproducing that exact rim today.)  If you don't know someone doing a GL who wants them locally then flip 'em on Ebay. 



 yesnod Yea, I bought a set for $160 and flipped them for $300.
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TylerCharger69
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« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2009, 08:07:38 PM »

Ya know...I'm putting R/T components in my XP car  (Engine, tranny, rear end, leafs....etc...etc..)  as well as the badging.  I see no problem turning a base model Charger into an R/T clone as long as one doesn't try to sell it off as a true R/T.  I've seen a few ebayers and other folks attempt do this....no one really falls for it...anyone who is knowledgeable anyway.   Basically....it's your car!!!  Build it according to your tastes, and if anyone ridicules you for it...well there's a few choice words you can tell them...but I won't say them in this forum angel
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