My 1978 Camaro Type LT
Built on Tuesday, February 7, 1978, Van Nuys (Los Angeles) CA. Total Factory delivered price: $7300 (1978), equivalent to $26,897.59 in 2016!
I'm the second private owner, took possession on June 3, 1983.
Engine: 346 cu. in. ( 3.898" B x 3.622" S) 1999 Vortec Gen III 5.3L bored to LS6 bore.
Induction: LS6 manifold, 78mm DBC (drive by cable) throttle body. #30 lb/hr injectors. 80MM 5 pin MAF.
Camshaft: GM # 12565308 Also known as the "LS6" cam. Duration @ 0.050" 204/218 , Valve Lift .555" intake, .551" exhaust, 117.5 degree LSA. Hydraulic Roller tappet
Crankshaft: Gen III 6.0L cast steel, lighten and balanced.
Cylinder Heads: "243" SPM (semi-permanent molding) castings, 2.00" intake, 1.55" exhaust, 1.7 ratio rockers. High performance "yellow" valve springs. These have the sodium filled exhaust and hollow intake valves.
Rods: Scat "H" beam forged floating pin rods, ARP rod bolts
Pistons: LS6 Mahle M142 high silicone alloy, floating pin design with Spirolock(tm) retainers.
Compression ratio: 10.5 to 1
Timing Chain: SA true double roller, 0 degree offset.
Ignition: LS2 coils
Electrical Power: 13.9VDC nominal. 145 amp, Corvette specific alternator.
Oil Pump: Melling high volume, standard pressure
Radiator: Custom built 4 row by Instant Radiator of Del City, OK., modified electric fan and shroud.
Fuel Delivery: In tank Walbro GSS-340 electric fuel pump, 255 l/ph rating.
Engine Management: GM PCM service # 12200411, fuel injection harness custom made by yours truly.
Exhaust: Edelbrock tri-tech coated headers, 2 1/2" dual exhaust, Dynomax mufflers
Transmission: 200-4R, external oil cooler Gear ratios: 1st gear: 2.74, 2nd gear: 1.57,third gear: 1.00 4th gear: .67. Transgo shift reprogramming kit. Corvette servo.
Differential: Stock 3.42 Posi-trac
Final Drive Ratio: 2.29 to 1. 2095 rpm @ 70mph. 6000 rpm fuel cutoff.
Driveshaft: 4" aluminum with front yoke balancer
Wheels: 1988 IROC Z 16x8 aluminum
Tires: Yokohama S Drive 225-55-16 "W" speed rating
Brakes: Front: SSBC 11" big bite rotors, and SSBC 2piston aluminum calipers. Rear: 11 inch 9C1 police option (4" thick drum- 2" wide shoes) power assisted. Russell's stainless steel braided brake hoses and speed bleeders.
Suspension: Stock height Z28 front coil springs, multi-leaf rear springs. Polygraphite bushings on rear, and on front control arms and front anti-sway bar. Both front and rear anti-sway bars from a WS6 equipped 1980 T/A ( 1 1/4" dia. front, 13/16" dia. rear).
Front air dam from a 1981 Z28, rear wheel flares from a 1979 T/A.
Steering: Power assist, 1986 IROC Camaro gearbox, 2.25 turns lock to lock.
Shocks: Edelbrock Performer IAS
Interior: Stock carmine red, custom deluxe cloth seats with vinyl inserts (Bedford Knit Corduroy).
Creature Comforts: Power windows, door locks, cruise control, tilt wheel, A/C.
Instrumentation: Full gauge package (RPO U14) standard on Type LT and Z28, Clock replaced with mechanical oil pressure gauge. 150 mph speedometer from 1971 Camaro, calibrated. Special design black light dash panel illumination designed by yours truly, first installed in 1988.
The dash panel was originally illuminated by a single 18" black light fluorescent tube, it was updated on 1-20-2013 with special UV LEDS, which resulted in a more uniform brighter panel.
LED TAIL LAMPS with SEQUENTIAL TURN SIGNALS
was inspired by today’s available technology and as a look back in the past.
There are 36
individual LEDS per tail lamp segment, per side; Red, Amber and White. 216 LEDS
total. The park/brake lamps use a combination of a resistor to dim the lamps for
the park function; a diode in the circuit allows the LEDS to brighten, bypassing
the park lamp to allow the brake lamp feature for full brightness.
The sequential turn
signals are split into three individual segments, themselves, each with 12 LED
lamps. They share a common ground, while the trigger voltages are separated. The
driver circuit is IC based; time synchronized which the rate of strobe can be
tuned via a variable potentiometer. Each side is independent of each other, so
while in the hazard flasher mode, the strobe can be adjusted to give a uniform
Built by yours
Driving Impressions (from my perspective)
I have owned this vehicle for a long time, ever since I first fell in love with it, back on that sultry warm June day in 1983. My buddies used to call it the "cream puff". Being a one owner it was pretty well taken care of and everything worked.
It has had several motors in its life, starting out with its original 305 2 bbl with the THM350, modified with a 4 bbl and headers and a Comp 268 cam all the way up to the present iron block LS6 engine. With each succession of increasingly powerful motors, came with the necessary brake and suspension upgrades to make it a safe car to drive. The full history can be read here.
Driving the Camaro is a pleasure. With all the pieces working together, it is machine that does exactly what it was built to do. Whether it is oozing down a boulevard at 35 mph or cruising the highway at 70, it does so without any complaints. The gear ratios in the overdrive and differential compliment the torque band of the LS6, and it does so without unnecessary lugging or any of the high winding buzz of a half hearted street rod. The car was built to be enjoyed, from the minute you twist the key and take off. Take note: No trailer queen here, folks! The exhaust note is pleasant, even at highway speeds, and does not drown out conversation with your passengers or compete with your stereo. It glides down the street effortlessly, and when told to zig, it zigs, when told to zag, it zags. The powerful torquey engine, close ratio steering, superior braking ability and balanced suspension allows you to take curves and carve through traffic with confidence, which is the true mark of any well thought out design and effort.
If a car is truly an extension of ones' personality, then mine fits me to a tee.