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1968 Camaor LS3 Swap

By: Robert 08/12/2019

I pulled the trigger and ordered a bunch of stuff from https://www.gmperformancemotor.com/ to upgrade my 1968 Camaro "Dorothy" from an Inline 250 Straight Six that might have had 150HP with a 2spd Power-glide to a new LS3 430HP with a 4L65e.


This is a picture of the day I bought her on November 7th 2014, my wife and I drove 15 hours from Naples up to Florence, Alabama to a place called Hut’s Auto Restoration. Tommy Hunt had picked her up just a few months earlier form the Mecum Car Auction in Tampa, she was originally from Ballston Spa, NY where Dorothy Hoyt purchased her when she was 65 years old back in 1968. I spoke to a previous owner that knew Dorthy and Harold and he said that they went down to the Chevy Dealer and all they had were Camaros with Big Blocks and Harold would not let her buy one of those so they ordered a convertible with a Six Cylinder. I did not find out that the car was from upstate NY until afterwards, not sure if I would have taken the drive if I knew the car came from the Rust Belt? Needless to say I don't think Dorothy drove the car much especially in the winter? The car only had 37,000 miles on her when I got her and the under carriage is in amazing condition solid as a rock.


At the time I purposely wanted a 68 with a straight six, back in the day I had 68 SS/RS with a 396 Big Block that got 8 miles to the gallon. Sorry but 8 miles to the gallon just seemed to take the fun out of driving it.


She was at times a little temperamental in starting, if you did not catch it just right you would have to make several attempts at getting her to turn over. Because of this I decided to give her a little update with some products from Clifford Research.



This solved my starting issues, and if you can believe it with these two Weber Carbs and the 3 into 1 Headers I was getting 23 MPG.


It was also fun at Car Shows to see people walk by and be surprised at what they found under the hood.


So as of this moment it has been 1,624 days since I bought the car, and I feel the need to get my hands dirty. Talked it over with my wife and she knows how hard I work and life is meant to be lived so I have her approval to to an upgrade to an LS3. She's a keeper, my wife that is.


First thing was to see if I could get anything for the current 250 engine and the 2spd Powerglide? Once a month a place called "Muscle Car City" has an automotive swap meet. So I drove the two hours up there, put a sign on the windshield "Engine & Tranny 4-Sale $1,200". It seemed to get a little interest but 3hrs into the morning it did not seem that I was going to have any luck, but then to my surprise someone that had walked by it earlier came back to ask about it and while we were talking someone else was waiting to discuses it also. Needless to say a guy named Tommy Lee gave me a $200 deposit for it. He plans to put it into his 1948 Chevy Fleetmaster, his friends thinks he should drop a small block in the Fleetmaster but what he liked about my engine is that it was different, that no one is going to walk up to it and expect to find a dual carb straight six in her. (same thing I experienced).


The following weekend Tommy (pictured) showed up with another $1,000 and helped me pull the engine and tranny out of the Camaro. I should have given him a discount with how much he helped with pulling it.

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