Barn Find ‘Vette: 1966 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible

The owner of this 1966 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible refers to it as a barn find in need of a complete restoration, but as a starting point, it looks to be pretty good. It would be great to get a closer look at the car, but from the supplied photos, it doesn’t look like it would take a lot of work to return it to a “driver” status. The Corvette is located in Boca Raton, Florida, and has been listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding has reached $27,100, and the reserve hasn’t been met.

I don’t know where the barn was that the Corvette was parked in, but I wouldn’t mind parking my car there. The Silver Pearl paint looks quite good, with no major flaws visible. Of course, the photos might be flattering to deceive, but it does look promising. The only rust that the owner identifies is some surface rust on the frame. It would seem that the car is quite solid, which is really good news. Since being removed from storage, the Corvette has received new bumpers, but the remaining original trim and chrome looks to have held up quite well. The factory hardtop appears to be in good condition, and while a new soft-top is included with the vehicle, the owner has chosen not to fit this.

Further good news comes when we open the hood of the Corvette, with the car still being numbers-matching. What we find is the 300hp, 327ci V8, while the car also features a 3-speed manual transmission and power steering. The positives here are the fact that the car runs and drives. Since being removed from storage it has received a complete brake rebuild, along with a new radiator, new water pump, new shocks, while the fuel tank has been flushed and the carburetor has been treated to a rebuild. Now comes the bad news. The owner says that while the Corvette runs and drives, the 327 blows some smoke, and he suggests that it would really benefit from a rebuild. That bursts the bubble sightly, but at least it isn’t horrendous news.

The first thing that I noticed with the interior photos is the lack of door trims. With this in mind, the owner does say that the interior is complete. It might be that the trims were removed when a new set of locks were fitted to the doors, and they just haven’t been refitted. Regardless, the interior doesn’t look horrible, and it could certainly be used as it is. What I will say is that it just looks tired, and I agree with the owner when he says that it would benefit from some restoration work. I noticed that the original owner chose not to have a radio fitted to the Corvette, and this raises an interesting point. When you look at the car, it appears that the only optional extras that were fitted to the car from new were the hardtop and power steering. It makes you think that the original owner really wanted “in” to the Corvette lifestyle, but that they were doing it on a budget. Still, that’s no criticism, because there were undoubtedly millions of Americans who also wanted to join that club, but couldn’t do it for one reason or another.

Given the amount of remedial work that has been performed on this Corvette since it emerged from storage, it certainly appears that it will take little more than an engine rebuild before the car would be fit to use on a daily basis. There is no doubt that it would be tempting to do this, and then get out and enjoy the new toy. This would be an option that many people would consider, working on the premise that classic cars are only original once. I am also sure that there will be people out there who will be looking at it, and they’ll be champing at the bit, desperate to grab the Corvette and treat it to a full restoration. Which camp would you fall into, and would you be willing to bid on this one?


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  1. Classic Steel

    This must of been stored in a racing derby 🐎 type horse barn. The ones with air conditioning. Soft rubber floors, big screen tv etc. etc.
    I did a tour in Lexington KY once of the derby owners barns and saw the winners and upcoming future horse 🐴 with good bloodlines. They rarely open that tour up.
    They to say the least looked like mini McMansions called barns 😎

    The C2 looks very well cared for as well interior etc
    The valve covers indicate lower ponies as stated on write up but who cares its a nice convertible 🤔😎

    I would put money the valve rubber seals are dried and is the smoke 💨 issue. This can be done without pulling the heads.
    That repair would not be my first rodeo and cheap.

    Like 4
  2. Skorzeny

    As Classic Steel says, this may be a minor fix for the smoke. I think this could be a nice driver with not a lot of work… Some of the surface corrision is ugly, but you sure wouldn’t see it from behind the wheel. You could up the HP a bit by doing some external mods, but this would be fun to drive as is… Price doesn’t seem bad to me for a car this nice.

    Like 1
  3. moosie moosie

    I’d investigate the oil smoke and hope that all it’d need is valve stem seals, if not I’d build a 327 / 350 for it, get the new convertible top fitted, find a muncie 4 speed for it along with a factory am/fm delco radio, ’67 Corvette rallye wheels, and just smile for every mile I drove this beauty. Yes it would seriously hurt the cars originality but it’d be my car to do with as I pleased.

    Like 6
  4. George Mattar

    Oil seals probably. All small blocks do it eventually. Bern there done that. I am a purist, but like the electric fan. Probably needs upper and lower control arm bushings. Not hard. Just hard work. Love silver. He has done plenty of work to make it drivable. So it smokes. Drive it. All these junk GM frames have some surface rust. They used asphalt based paint in those days. These cars came off new car carriers had surface rust on the suspension pieces and lower frame rails. I saw it as I worked at a Chevy dealer many moons ago. I own a silver C3. Great color.

    Like 1
  5. DRV

    It’s a great original. I like the options as they are. One item is that it’s been repainted in the past 15 years. I’ve done enough of these bodies to know that no matter the storage you would see bonding strips somewhere by now , and although it’s a great paint job, the fine edges are done well but not factory well. There is a fine line on it’s fine lines from sharp to rounded.

    Like 1
  6. John Skeadas

    Did I understand the listing correctly? 3 speed manual transmission?
    I had no idea that Corvette offered such a base gearbox

    • Andy

      I’m suprised too but a closeup of the console plateshows a 3 speed configuration. Would still love to have it.

    • Classic Steel

      Irony one could order from a 327 to 427 with the four speed standard but the three speed was optional and rarer etc.

      Like 1
    • leiniedude leiniedude Member

      John, the 327 CI ,300 HP with the 3 speed trans was base for model year 1966.

    • buckybadger

      The 3 speed was standard, 4 speed or automatic optional, through the 1969 model year.

  7. Joe Haska

    Give it lots of TLC just like a Golden Lab Puppy, and then drive it like you were stealing it!

    Like 1
  8. TimM

    Pretty unique to have a 327 and a 3 speed manual transmission!! It would be a fun car to drive I just hate when I’m driving along in third and I push the clutch in looking for fourth and it’s not there!!!

    Like 3
  9. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    If the door “trims” are available, why didn’t they throw them back on? They take like 15 – 30 minutes to do. The hardest part is taking the window crank retention clip off, but they make a cheap tool to make it easier.

    Like 1
  10. andrew r

    a buddy of mine bought this car.the pics do it no is a very nice solid car.

    Like 1

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