Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

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Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by 77dreammachine on Sat May 28, 2016 5:39 pm

Hey everyone, I'm newer to the forum, been a lurker a while before that. Lol. Anyways, just wanted to get a conversation started on what everyone on here thinks of their cars, what they've done, and what all of you think is best for these awesome cars; keep it strictly original, minor updates/modifications, complete modification (bigger better drive train, rims, ect), or somewhere in between? For me it's a big dilemma, I own a 77 Malibu classic, and while I do love the car in its original state I've had to do a few things like get an aftermarket fuel gauge and do a few updates. I just shipped my car back to my hometown where I'm going to being the restoration process and I can't decide how "more modern" I would like to make the car. I like its original state, I think a unique thing about having an old car is the experience of driving it in its stock suspension state ect, but at the same time I've used it as a daily driver and think it would be nice to have a few things like upgraded gauges that actually give you info on what's going on in the engine along with a better wiper delay system. But at the same time I'm torn if I want to do that because it kind of takes away from the originality of the car, and original parts for a-bodies are hard to come by these days. Anyways, what're your thoughts people of the forum?

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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by clanceman427 on Sat May 28, 2016 8:14 pm

Well for me since I have a numbers matching car with documentation, I will be restoring back to factory stock. But before I dive into the big Job I'm using it to drive on nice days and put aftermarket wheels on it.

If I had a car without all that above I'd probably transplant a worked bbc in it with a rock crusher 4 speed
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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by 77dreammachine on Sat May 28, 2016 8:35 pm

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. lol. But at the same time it just makes me cringe sometimes when a car has been pieced together like Frankenstein. For example; I've been thinking about the 4-2 headlight conversion, but at the same time I think it may take away from the originality of the car and take away from what it was when first purchased in 77

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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by fasrnur on Sat May 28, 2016 8:46 pm

For me, I'm going to go the middle of the road way. I'm going to keep it stock appearing with only wheels being the first things one will notice. I'm keeping the bench seat and have a hurst auto stick 1 in it. It will have an auto custom sound radio in it to keep it looking original with all the modern stuff in it. I'm going to lower it some and put better suspension on it in the future. Of course headers, flowmasters, intake and carb swap is a must. I'm just going to make it a fun easy to drive daily driver.
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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by Hawk03 on Sat May 28, 2016 10:06 pm

77dreammachine wrote:Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. lol. But at the same time it just makes me cringe sometimes when a car has been  pieced together like Frankenstein. For example; I've been thinking about the 4-2 headlight conversion, but at the same time I think it may take away from the originality of the car and take away from what it was when first purchased in 77

You would hate my car then. I have a 77 and replaced the body with one that had a lot less rust which was cheaper than trying to replace every panel on the old body. Then I changed the front end to a '74 single headlights and also changed the rear bumper to a '74/75 bumper. I also lowered it and am going to install larger wheels on it. My radio and sound system will be modern but have a factory look to it.
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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by chevellelaguna on Sun May 29, 2016 11:12 pm

Because I've had my car for as long as I have it's been thru many changes throughout the years. It's been stock for a day and a half. After that it's been anything performance. 12.5:1 355 hedders 3" Flowmasters,carb,intake,msd box, larger rims tires, boxed suspension, lowered, built th350 3,000 stall. 3.42 posi. The body has remained stock except for the cowl hood.
Just remember the more power you make, you'll eventually find all the weak links in the system. Had to upgrade the fuel delivery system, build a stronger driveshaft. Broke torque converters, transmissions, u joints, rocker arms, studs, bent pushrods, melted ignition systems. Smoked tires, ate starters and solonoids. Been thru it all, had a killer sound system in it. I like the outward appearance to look original but that's about it. Overhaul number 4 this time... Hopefully it's last. Breaking stuff is never fun, but I enjoyed making mods to a car that wasn't a cookie cutter car that you saw on every corner.
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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by Roadcaptain S3 on Mon May 30, 2016 2:52 pm

That's a legit question because G3s are becoming more "collectible" than ever before, and I've already seen a few nice G3s at 3 different cars shows this year.

I don't ever recall seeing more seventies cars at shows/cruises than I have for the last two years.

Collectors have always been pretty anal about 100% originality equaling value. But it sure looks like nearly any post 1972 car is immune from that if the the drive train has been upgraded while the rest of the car remains original or easily restored to original.

I suspect that REAL collector types wouldn't be interested in G3s anyway, unless they were really fine examples of the specialty cars. SS, Laguna, 442 et al

BUT a guy that was looking for one to modify or just cruise would probably want to start with a low mileage, mostly orig car, and would probably be willing to pay up.


I had a Laguna that I modified pretty heavily, but only the engine and trans. One school of thought is that by doing that, I increased the value because the 75 engines were "bad". Others argue that I decreased the value because it was no longer a numbers matching car.
Both are probably right to some degree, depending on who bought it. The guy I sold it to was thrilled with the upgrades.

My current 77 has 43xxx miles, I've kept everything I took off. I don't ever plan to sell it, but you just never know.
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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by Damon23 on Mon May 30, 2016 4:59 pm

Personally I like to see cars done on both sides of the scale. It really is important to have cars out there that are done factory because well, they aren't making them anymore and will always get a great source for how something was done. That really applies to the low mile number matching cars but people that have bought them new already know but you have to think about generations coming up now. The modified cars are cool too. You can look at one and see how far you want to go or what people are doing to improve them. These cars are coming up, you are going to start to see the special ones pop up like the SE Malibu's, Laguna's and 442's. Once that happens all the others will pop up as people will shy away from the earlier years as they have become unreachable for a lot of folks. I did one factory resto on a 1979 Z28 and never again will I do it. I'll buy one done like that if I want one. Putting my own twist on a car is how I want to keep on going. Some people may like it, some people may hate it but I don't care. It is mine and if someone does not like it that much they are more than welcome to buy it and do what they think is right.

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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

Post by knightfan26917 on Sun Jun 05, 2016 5:24 pm

Damon23 wrote:Personally I like to see cars done on both sides of the scale.

My thoughts exactly.

I much prefer stock, but I appreciate a lot of the work people put into modifying cars.  I also don't mind stock cars with some upgrades.


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Re: Fine line between original and modified (thoughts?)

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