1968 Camaro – Jimmy Johnson

OK, so, a couple of weeks ago, we showcased Jimmy Johnson and the 1956 Chevy truck he built. We also shared that it would be making it’s debut at the Goodguys Autocross event.1956 Chevy Banner

This has been one of the most popular interviews to date, so, I thought, heck, why not showcase more? You seem to really like his builds, so, let’s take a look at this one.

This 68 Camaro is designed and custom built by Jim Johnson of Jim’s Body & Paint in Geneva ,Iowa.

What is the year, make and model of this one?

uptwn 002This is a 1968 Chevy Camaro

Who is the owner of the Camaro and is it still theirs?

It belongs to Donny Warneke. Donny got the car in 1985 and drove it throughout High School.

Was this a father/son, Daughter project?

No, however, Donny and my boy, Travis, ran together. Picture 460 (Large)

Travis had a 71 Chevelle at the time. They were two of the local gear heads, who, together built,raced, swapped, and grenaded more than a few engines, as well as,  scattered many other parts across the countryside.

I helped put the Camaro back together after a couple of out of control ditch rides.

I guess, in a way, that explains why you built this vehicle, but, can you give us some background for it?

Picture 173 (Medium)Along the way the 68 got pushed, motor less, into the barn for a long rest.

In 2003 it was drug into my shop again, this time for a nice restoration. It had been beat to death and needed it all.

So, I asked the question, why restore at this stage? Let’s just build.

It went Dec. 27, 2007 to Recovery Room Hot Rod Interiors for a one off Custom treatment by Tracy Weaver and Crew.14066377_1502249496467843_861187962101804935_o

So, with all it needed, can you let us know what you did to it, what parts were used, what fabrication needed done?

The engine was built by Donny and Travis.

It is a fully balanced and blue-printed 440 cubic inch GM Big Block with Heads that are 1967 GM Aluminum, small Chamber Rect. Prt. 2.19 intake 1.88 exhaust, with 10.5 compression. It has all aluminum accessories and pulleys.

100_1561 - CopyIt has a Solid Roller Cam .620 lift with a Single plane intake & 830 cfm. Carburetor.

Ceramic short style Headers for ground clearance and Custom Stainless with Torquetube exhaust.

March Long Pump serpentine belt and pulley system and a Large crossflow Aluminum Radiator with Dual Fans to allow it to handle 650 HP.

The Modifications to the underside and drive-train include:

The Drive train is a 6 Speed Transmission, which was adapted from a 2005 dodge Viper,  with a  new, heavy duty clutch system converted to a Hydraulic Clutch. A 12 Bolt. Rear/4.10 Posi-traction,  GM Standard four wheel Disc Brakes  ,all Stainless lines, Quick Picture 471ratio GM Power Steering, 2 inch drop spindles, Coil-overs, Tubular A arms, 1inch sway bar, a relocated and dropped rear Leaf spring, Heavy shocks and Z’D shackles.

The rear suspension is heavily modified. Wheel tubs moved inboard 2″ (2 inches), the shocks were relocated, the springs were lowered and moved inboard, traction bars were installed, disk brakes added, new bearings, seals, fuel tank and lines and a new fuel pump.

The battery was relocated to the rear.

All of the lines are new and are stainless steel and the fasteners and hardware are also new, throughout.

Picture 089 - CopyIt rolls on Billet Specialties Wheels, 18X8 front 18×9.5 Rear with Z-rated Good Year tires good for 200 MPH plus.

The front bumper is a 1969, which was narrowed and reshaped, painted and mounted with fabricated brackets.

The upper grill opening is smoothed and recessed to accommodate quad (4) headlights from a 1970 Oldsmobile and is also hand fabricated stainless steel grill, the turn signals and driving lights were adapted from a 1969 Camaro. The lower valance had the lower grill opening fabricated.

The front fenders have lower extensions molded ahead and behind the wheel. The lower air dam and fender extensions are one-off, made of molded fiberglass.

The hood has a steel cowl induction scoop welded in from the bottom side and molded smooth all around.

All inner front panels and support systems were smoothed, relocated and modified, then painted body colors.11033716_1114030025289794_96223014952019809_o

Side rocker panels were extended the full length to give an even and finished look to the bottom edges, then the rear quarters were smoothed, side lights removed and ends of the rear spoiler were molded on.

The rear deck lid has the original spoiler reshaped and molded to it.

The rear body panel has lamps fabricated in from a 1969 Camaro and reversed. The gas cap is a custom pop-up welded in.

100_1760 (Large) - CopyThe doors are smoothed and a 2003 GM latch and handle system was installed and molded.

All painted surfaces are finished with P.P.G. base coat/clear coat system in super red and silver pearl.

Other modifications include new instruments, altered oil pan, steering linkage, transmission mount and tunnel, emergency brake moved from the foot to the hand, new pedals and a steering wheel.

So, Jimmie took what would have been possibly a minor restoration/project and completely remade this Camaro. Check out all of the pictures below and let Jimmie know what you think of this Camaro.



Wesley Lake – 1950 Dodge 5-Window Truck

19551219_434575820250849_1127367074_nSo, Wesley decided to take on a project that put two major American icons together. Add to that a diesel to power a 4×4 chassis, how can anyone go wrong?

Check out the story below to see what he married together and what he has had to do to get there. Give us your comments at the bottom and don’t forget to check out the photos.

What type of vehicle is this?

This is a 1950, 5 window Dodge truck on an 82 K10 4×4 frame.

So, what is the story behind the purchase/find of this truck? 4119300640_31d461ab40
I was going to build a Astro van and put it on the 4×4 frame, but I couldn’t find one. I had  been looking for something different because that’s what I like to build and my father found this truck.
I wasn’t going to look at it because it’s not what I wanted, but, I went anyway. As soon as I saw it, I had to have it. 
I picked it up as a roller, no motor or transmission.
19668239_434932370215194_1786619532_nI didn’t know how hard the parts were to find until I got it, but it’s been fun and I get a lot of compliments on it.
How much was it purchased for?
I paid $500
What have you done to it so far?
It has a 6.2 Detroit diesel. Chevy used this motor in the 80s.
It sits on a 82 Chevrolet 4×4 frame. I had to cut and shorten it to fit the bed, but, other 19553464_434932453548519_1790147317_nthan that, it’s stock with no lift.
I put a set of 33\1250\15 mud tires and took the side saddle tank out and put a new fuel tank from a blazer in the back.
I made new frame and body mounts and slid the cab on the frame. I had to cut the firewall out to fit the motor in (it sits in the cab 4 in).

Where is it now, in the rebuild stage?

I am in the process of doing the body work now had to rebuild the bottoms of the doors
19576109_434576583584106_332778824_nAny special parts you have used?
The special parts on my truck is a 6.2diesel engine makes it one of a kind.

Any help you have gotten?19601036_435553013486463_2600324369925598534_n

A special thanks to Tim at Tim’s classic and modern Auto and Ron at Ron’s classic car parts for helping me through this process.

Wesley hasn’t finished his project truck just yet, but, it shouldn’t take too long before he gets it to where he wants it. Putting a Dodge body on a Chevy frame is a big job and it looks like he was up

Happy Birthday, America!

Birthday_America_July_4th_United_StatesAnother year, America!

So glad to be an American and a Veteran. I served this country and love our flag. I believe in the Constitution and truly feel this country has been blessed beyond measure by God.


My Basic Training Photo, 1988

I want to thank all of those brothers and sisters who have, are, or will in the future, serve our great country. May God bless you and keep you safe. This day is a celebration, from tyranny, it is a remembrance of where we came from and for those of us who served, it is why we chose to lay our lives on the line to allow the rest of the country to enjoy the freedoms that did not come free.

468790_10151966810098378_1075418443_oTo every American, this is for you! The service and the sacrifice, because, guess what, we love you. You are the reason we chose to do it and why we would do it again!

Yes, this day is a celebration of our decision252261_10151966807008378_624855069_nn to be a free country, our declaration of our Independence from a corrupt government. However, this day has meaning in other ways. There has been a lot of people who have laid down there lives for America. The bible says in John, 15:13, Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

However, there is someone who has given the greatest gift, Jesus himself. He laid down His life for everyone, friend and enemy. He b134cc51af5117af0a848905c454584a--heavenly-father-saviorshowed the greatest love imaginable. He gave His life so that you and I could have freedom from sin and eternal life with Him forever.

You can get more information by reading my article called Restoration.

(John 3:16, For God so loved the world,[a] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.)

All you have to do is accept the gift and allow Jesus to be your Lord and Savior.