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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all: I'm a classic muscle car enthusiast; starting with a nice 64 Nova back in 1975. I've owned several classic Oldsmobiles over the years,and currently own a 1968 Olds Toronado W-34. (W34 being the only high perf option for Toronado's in 1968 that
included a 455ci V8, 400hp @550ft lbs torque; th425 automatic, 4bbl carb, dual exhaust, and front wheel drive.)
Anyroad, I've recently decided to sell my Toronado on Craigslist, and my 84 Dodge Truck, and buy a 3rd Gen El Camino. I like the body styles between 68 & 70 the best.
I'm a believer in searching for specifics, so here is the "perfect" El Camino for me;
I'm looking for a dark blue metallic 1968 El Camino SS with white vinyl top. Black vinyl interior, with bucket seats, all pwr options. Engine could be 327,350, 396, or 454, 4bbl carb, or fuel injection, matched to a Turbo matic 400 trans, with floor console. Positract differential. I would prefer pwr disc brakes. Overall condition should be very clean, neat, well cared for original, with everything either new, or restored to like new.

Now, the difficult part. Since I dont know anything about El Caminos, I would greatly
appreciate anyone's input in what to watch for. Any information would be valuable.
I understand that El Camino's have a tendancy to have rust form around the back window chrome trim, on floor pans, and in the cargo area below the rear glass in the
spare tire compartment.
Questions:
How do I tell a true SS from a Clone?
What years of El Camino's had all power options offered?
What years are parts interchangable? Which parts?
What kind of "defects" should I watch for, if any?
Are there any other areas where rust might be a problem?
What are the handling characteriscs in a tight corner?
Are there any other websites where I might find parts? ideas? photos? history?

I'm looking forward to making new friends in this world of classic El Camino's, and
joining any clubs in the Oklahoma area.

Thank you for your help,

Donivan
 

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Ministry of Broke Things
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6,799 Posts
Donivan,
First, I want to say welcome to El Camino Central. You came to the right place to ask questions before you buy. Where in Oklahoma are you? I'm only 15 miles south of the Red River, so if you are in SE OK, the we are not too far apart.

Here's some good info on telling a genuine SS from a clone: http://www.chevelles.com/shop/ss_ident.html

As far as your other questions, I've never owned a 3rd gen, just several 4th gens, and I now have a 5th gen. However, I have just started to restore a '72 Chevelle, but I don't have a whole lot of knowledge about the options, etc. on the '68s. However, there are several on this forum that do, so hopefully they will jump in here soon and help you out.

Regarding rust, in this part of the country and points west, you shouldn't have too much trouble finding relatively rust free examples. However, Elkys from the north and the coast usually have rust issues. The common areas for rust are the floors, rear window, and the quarters behind the rear wheels. I've noticed El Caminos with the vinyl roof usually have more rust issues around the rear window than Elkys without the vinyl top.

Here's a few websites that will give you plenty to read for awhile:
http://www.chevelles.com/
http://www.elcaminostore.com/
http://www.originalpartsgroup.com/indexhome.asp
http://www.npdlink.com/

Good luck with your search! :beer:
 

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543 Posts
Just a couple of small things, if you can't find a 68-9 disc brake El Camino definatley plan on adding them at some point (from presonal experience even with a small block the stock drum brakes are not the hot set up for stopping and it gets worse with a big block).

Another common rust area are the lower rear corners of the front fenders.

Rear shock mounts are often broken out on these trucks especially if they have been used with air shocks over the years.

On the 68s pay close attention to the plastic on the dash cluster. These can be pretty deteriorated after 40 years and as far as I know they are not currently being reproduced.

Good luck in your search.
 

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Past National Director
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7,018 Posts
Welcome!

Welcome to the Forms, mobilemover! Good luck with your efforts. I, too, am partial to the 3rd generation, although an El Camino of any flavor beats the heck out of all the other "autos" taking up space on our roadways! I can offer you "some" insight on the 68 model only. There are others available on the site who can write the book on the El Camino (I suspect that some of them have!).

If you're looking for an original- The 68 El Camino SS was only offered with a 396 c.i.d. engine. Other areas to search for rust, or bondo if rust was not properly repaired, is fore and aft of the front wheel opening, fore and aft of the rear wheel opening, and over all wheel openings. And, if you can remove the plastic compartment behind the driver's seat, look with a flashlight for rust in the "smuggler's box". Many persons not familiar with the El Caminos do not realize that there is a large compartment beneath the front bed area - and there are holes in the bottom of this compartment that allow all sorts of road contaminants to infiltrate the compartment, causing rust that cannot be examined well from any other vantage point........Ken
 

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Besides the www.chevelles.com web pages of info, there are also some knowledgable El Camino folks there as well. Drain them dry!!!

Besides our site sponsors, www.ss396.com and www.opgi.com sometimes have what you need as well.

Welcome in advance to 3rd Gen Elky-World!
 

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553 Posts
Also Elko's with A/C had a tendency to rust where the condinsation dripped behind the right front wheel--Be sure to check there if so equipped ok?? good luck the hunt is fun also--Glenn:beer:
 

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Premium Member
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Having a real ELCAMINO SS would be something special. If I had a true SS I would probably not want to drive it. In Tennessee it is manditory to have liabiality insurance. When you see 10% of the vehicles with expired license plates and no brake lights it sure makes you wonder what the laws are for. I saw a vehicle with BICENTENIAL plates, 2000 on the road. Had an OLDS toronado, when you hit passing gear you had better have changed lanes or you would be in the other car's A$$ end. If you have lots of bucks get a true SS but make the seller prove that it is, not just them saying it is. I see nothing wrong with CLONES in automobiles, as long as they are advertised as clones. Good SS HUNTING..
:neutral:
 

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Premium Member
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12,579 Posts
Hi,
Welcome to ECC.
Great choice in years
What stage ELKO are you looking for, Completely restored?
Well then,
HERE IS A TRUE 1968 EL CAMINO S/S. 396 BIG BLOCK WITH HI-RISE INTAKE,CHROME MOROSO VALVE COVERS (BIG ENOUGH TO TAKE A BATH IN) 2.5" MAGNAFLOW EXHAUST,HOOKER HEADERS, 400 TURBO TRANS WITH SHIFT KIT AND SEPERATE COOLING FAN, 12 BOLT 411 GEAR POSI-TRAC REAR END,WELD 5 STAR RIMS,FRONT DISC BRAKES, NICE INTERIOR, WEBBED BUCKET SEATS,HEAD LINER, CARPET, AND DASH IN GREAT SHAPE, PIONEER C/D, ALPINE EQ, AND HI OUTPUT AMP UNDER SEAT,TILT WHEEL,FACTORY GUAGES PLUS 3 POD GAUGES,B&M SHIFTER,VERY RARE FACTORY ROLL TACH,CUSTOM MIRROR AND DOOR LOCKS,NEW POWER STEERING,NEW ALARM, NEW 50S IN THE REAR, JUST PAINTED THIS YEAR, ZINK YELLOW WITH CUSTOM STRIPS, (SO BRIGHT I HAVE TO KEEP THE BEE'S FROM TRYING TO POLLINATE IT) IT HAS ARROWS ON THE HOOD SO YOU CAN ALWAYS KNOW WHERE YOUR GOING, ALSO 1 OF A KIND (TRUNK) (LOCKABLE) IN BED. IT COMES WITH A HARD SHELL (LOCKABLE) BED COVER.THIS IS PURE BEAUTIFUL AMERICAN MUSCLE!!! 1 OF 5190 MADE IN 1968, IF YOUR BASHFUL THEN IT'S NOT THE CAR/TRUCK FOR YOU! THIS CAR WAS MADE IN FREEMONT CALIF. BOUGHT FROM SAN JOSE IN 2006 AND AINT SEEN NOTHING BUT TEXAS SUNSHINE EVERY SENCE. YOU EITHER LIKE EL CAMINO'S OR YOU DON'T, BUT IF YOU DO THEN YOU'LL LOVE THIS ONE! GIVE ME A CALL AND I'LL GIVE YOU MORE DETAILS, AND MORE PICS.
THANKS FOR LOOKING
DONNY
972-272-2696:nanawrench:
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
To All: Thank you for the generous response! I'll use the links that you've provided, and gather all
the information online in my search for the El Camino that best suits my needs. I've re read my preferences in my first posting, and discovered that I need to edit some of that. Although I can
appreciate any El Camino that has been thoroughly customized and updated, etc etc. I believe that I
would prefer a more sedated "All Original and mechanically restored" vehical. Of course I would like
a car that has decent original paint, body, glass, chrome, interior, and everything operates well.
I guess I'm looking for a complete all original car that I can simply get in, and drive away.
As I mentioned before, I'm selling my 68 Olds Toronado W34, for only $6500; but if anyone is interested in trading straight across with their 68 El Camino, then I'd be willing to do that.
Anyroad, I'm looking forward to many more fun time with my new vehical.

Road On,

Donivan :beer:
 
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