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I am looking at 72 El Camino that is badged as an SS. From what I have read on it sounds like there is no easy way to tell if the car was an SS or not. Based on the decoder on here, the car I'm looking at it is:

D - El Camino Custom
H - 350 2bbl

From the articles on here it sounds like it's possible this could be an SS but I need to look at original options documenation to determine for sure. Are there any sites like MARTI reports for Fords where you can get the original information on the car?

Also, he's asking $10k for the car. I haven't gotten very far into looking at it and don't know the mileage. Also, he isn't sure if it has the original motor/drivetrain or not. If it's a 350 2bbl but an actual SS, any idea what a "good quality driver" value be on the car? Also, how much does number matching effect the value? My concern is this car is a factory 2bbl so it may not be as valuable as even a 305 4bbl optioned car.

thanks in advance for your help!
 

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I'd say that based on what info you've given us so far it's a clone...but I could be wrong and I'm not a 3rd gen genius. Pics dude lots of pics and then post them...get some of the interior...an SS has a different cluster and I believe SS in the center of the steering wheel. These alone are some of the biggest items clone clowns miss when trying to pass off a clone as a real SS. You can bet if he's telling you he doesn't know if it's the original drivetrain or not...it probably isn't...be careful if your looking for a real SS! Numbers matching is a big deal to collectors...especially when it comes to the Big Block SS cars, but for a small block daily driver it's not that big of a deal...most have had the original motor replaced.

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madkaw said:
From what I have read on it sounds like there is no easy way to tell if the car was an SS or not. Based on the decoder on here, the car I'm looking at it is:

D - El Camino Custom
H - 350 2bbl
For '72, you could order a SS with a 454, 402, 350-4, or a 350-2. But the kicker is that the you could also order all these motors EXCEPT the 454 in non SS El Camino's. So the ONLY true way to tell by looking at the VIN ONLY is if the 5th digit is a "W", which would indicate "454" as the "454" could only be ordered on the SS.

It doesn't mean the one your looking at is not a true SS, it just means you will not be able to tell via the VIN.


madkaw said:
Also, he's asking $10k for the car. I haven't gotten very far into looking at it and don't know the mileage. Also, he isn't sure if it has the original motor/drivetrain or not. If it's a 350 2bbl but an actual SS, any idea what a "good quality driver" value be on the car? Also, how much does number matching effect the value? My concern is this car is a factory 2bbl so it may not be as valuable as even a 305 4bbl optioned car.
Documentation and pictures would go a long way in trying to see if it is real or a clone. Condition of components, engine, body, frame, etc. would all determine if it is worth $10K. If it is a clone with a 350 2bbl, then $10K is to high.

Numbers matching does effect the value, but to different degrees with different cars. You stated he doesn't know if it is the original motor....so that throws any thought of numbers matching out the window.

There is a small pad area in back of the alternator on the engine block and this "pad" has the VIN number of the vehicle on it. If that matches, at least you know the block came with the Elco....

Does that help or confuse??? 8O
 

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Look in the glove box for the tire pressure label and they tire size. SS option included F60X15 tires, not available on other the SS optioned cars/El Camino. Of course thats assuming someone was not clever enough to change that.


fyi..........This is for the 71 models but was unchanged for 72 except for maybe prices.


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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for all the great tips. I'm 99% sure the car has the SS on the steering wheel. The car is in very good shape. I have a feeling the car was just redone before this guy bought it 2 years ago. the paint (although covered in an inch of dust) is nice. the car is in a storage unit where I am restoring my car.

I've seen the car clean before and that paint was very nice. It may need a buff job after sitting uncovered but other than that it is very clean. The inside also looks like it has been redone. It has the console shifter and buckets. I haven't looked under the car yet except for the fender wells. The car is an A/C car but the compressor and lines are gone.

The one thing I don't like is it has a cover over the bed. The kicker is when I looked in the bed the idiot actually has a car cover sitting in the bed of the car. Not sure why he would not have taken the time to cover the darn thing.

The other thing I noticed is it does not have the correct hood. There are not hood pins and it's not a true cowl induction hood. It's an aftermarked cowl hood. Would all SS models have the cowl induction hood and hood pins?

I was planning to check the block, transmission and rear end to see if it was the original drivetrain. I'm assuming all of them would be stamped someplace with the VIN?

I was pretty excited when I found out he was selling it. I have a 92 foxbody (yeah I own fords) that I was going to sell to make room for this car. The more I look at it the more I think it's probably a clone. I'll be at the unit again tonight working on my car and have pretty easy access to the El Camino. I'll look it over to see if I can find any of the things mentiong in the replies.

Thanks for all the help,
Tim
 

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The other thing I noticed is it does not have the correct hood. There are not hood pins and it's not a true cowl induction hood. It's an aftermarked cowl hood. Would all SS models have the cowl induction hood and hood pins?

The cowl induction hood was a special option (ZL2) not included in the SS pkg. It had an opening in the top rear edge that allowed air into ducted air cleaner. It was only available with the 396 or 454 engine thru Chevrolet.

The standard SS pkg hood was the doomed hood without the cowl induction. In 1970 only the CI hood had pins but from 71 up all doomed hoods had them. If this elky does not have them, then the hood had been replaced. If that is so, you got to wonder why? Look to see if the fenders have also been replaced as if the car was damaged in an accident. If the hood is they only thing then I would bet the car is a cloned SS.

Did you look in the glove box for the tire label and tire size?

What type of dash does it have? 3 large round pods with 4 smaller ones around the 3 or is it just a long rectangular speedometer?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I know for a fact the car has an aftermarket hood on it. I did look at the gauges again today and they are the rectangular guages/spedo. I would expect the oval guages for a true SS (similar to other SS models). I'd pretty much say this is a clone.

I think the guy is going to have a really tough time getting the $10k out of the car that he paid for it. From what I'm seeing this type of car sell for online I'm guessing is more of a $6k - $8k car. The odometer only shows 75k mi so I'm assuming it's a low mileage car and it does look like who ever did the restoration on it did a nice job.

Thanks for everyone's pointers/advice. Kept me from making a big mistake!
 

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A classic car dealer and custom body shop owner near here had a really nice 72 El Camino SS for sale a few (5+) years back. It was perfect, hot rod 350 engine and was advertising as a SS. It had the SS style dash with gages and everything a SS should have. When I looked at the VIN though it said it came with the base 307 engine. Well, you could not get the SS option with a base engine, had to order optional extra cost engines to get it. When I grilled him about that fact, he then changed his tune and admitted it was not a SS to start with but was now and thats all he cared about. And he still wanted $25,000 for it. It was a show car to say the least.
 

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Look in the glove box for the tire pressure label and they tire size. SS option included F60X15 tires, not available on other the SS optioned cars/El Camino. Of course thats assuming someone was not clever enough to change that.


fyi..........This is for the 71 models but was unchanged for 72 except for maybe prices.


[url]http://i204.photobucket.com/albums/bb222/Z15_34396/AA1.jpg[/url]
Interesting!

Looks like the factory put M20 Trans in the '71's if I read that correctly?

I wonder if that changed by the SS or motor you ordered. I don't have "REAL" proof such as the build sheet or dealer receipt to show my '72 is a true SS, but the VIN has the W for the 454 and all the other aspects arer there and my 4 speed is an M22.
 

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I paid 12 for a true 1969 SS396. The interior badges had the same level of corrosion and Texas red dust behind them as the speedo and frame had inside it. That's how I figure its a real one.. It came with the automatic console..
My car came with a nice 454, Turbo 400 and a 10 bolt 2.87 which I really like.. I had to install a new interior. If this one is in good shape 10 is pretty decent..
 

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Juss Wonderin'.................

I paid 12 for a true 1969 SS396. The interior badges had the same level of corrosion and Texas red dust behind them as the speedo and frame had inside it. That's how I figure its a real one.. It came with the automatic console..
My car came with a nice 454, Turbo 400 and a 10 bolt 2.87 which I really like.. I had to install a new interior. If this one is in good shape 10 is pretty decent..


How did you determine the '69 was a "True SS", Jeff? All '69 SSs came with the heavy-duty 12-bolt rear end, and the 454, of course, was not an available option in '69 on the Chevelle/El Camino. I'm certainly not implying that it's NOT an SS, just wonderin' how the determination was made?............Ken
 
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