Ray’s Drop Top Duo!

Ray In High School

From Ray W – My story begins with a 1967 Rally Sport Camaro Coupe I had the pleasure of owning back in 1985 as an 11th grader in high school. Unfortunately, the car didn’t see my senior year due to an offset head on collision. To this day I tell the tale of how the car saved my life, without even wearing a seat belt.  After high school graduation I proudly enlisted in the United States Navy. Mostly due to the ease of mobility I turned to Asian vehicles as daily drivers, although, still had dreams of owning another 60’s muscle car. 

Ray's Firebird

In 2003 I attended a swap meet in Carlisle Pennsylvania with aspiration of coming home with a first generation Camaro. Well until I saw the asking prices that is … I did, however, come home with a really nice, driver quality, 1969 Pontiac Firebird 400, 4-speed – Convertible. I contacted the Pontiac Historical Society which documented the car’s originality. However, the car was repainted parchment white instead of its original color of palladium silver. So, in 2010 I decided to dismantle, media blast and take the car back to its original color. With a lot of help from some really talented friends I was able to achieve just that. Something to this day I’m very, very proud of!

Ray's Camaro

Although I really love my Firebird, I still had dreams of owning another First Generation Camaro. Well that day came in August of this year when I found, just 5 miles from my home, a 1967 Rally Sport Camaro – Convertible! The car has its original, numbers matching drive train, 327 / 275 hp (L30 M20 package), 4 speed, deluxe interior, center console with factory gauges and power convertible top! All with 75k original miles and documentation to include the original Protect-O-Plate!  Now granted the car needs restoration, however, runs and drives!!! My plans for the car are to drive and enjoy until I’ve saved enough money to properly restore. I’ve driven it to several car shows and car enthusiast are amazed at its originality all the way down to the canister oil filter!

What a sweet pair of convertibles! I want to thank him for sharing with us and wish him the best of luck with them! So which of these would you rather have? Or would you like to have both?

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Comments

  1. Rando

    If the camaro is all original don’t restore it – leave it as is. My opinion. Take care of it and keep it ORIGINAL.

  2. Jim B

    Love these kinds of stories, BF!

  3. Gary K

    Wow, both wonderful finds! If I had a choice of one to keep I would have to go with the Firebird, I am partial to Pontiac cars of this era and that beauty being a drop top and with a four speed is a no brainer for me. I also agree with Rando and say keep the Camaro original and drive occasionally and just enjoy it!!

  4. Chris in WNC

    or drive it FREQUENTLY and enjoy it!

  5. Dolphin Member

    Great story. How many of us would like to get back our favorite cars that we owned when we were young? I can think of a few I’d like to have. Glad to hear that you got a Camaro RS plus a Firebird 400 too.

  6. PhxBarbie

    What a cool story. It has it all; muscle cars, love of country, bravery… And best of all a happy ending! Love the yearbook pic, the 80s were definitely my favorite decade:-))

  7. Barzini

    To answer your question, it would be a nearly impossible choice but the edge might go to the Firebird. How lucky he is to own both.

  8. jim BROWN

    What a great story, congratulations…and enjoy the car the way you want…it is yours.

  9. Woodie Man

    This guy has it going on…..whats the chances of finding a 4speed unmolested early Camaro CONVERTIBLE? Slim.

  10. Derik Lattig

    I am lucky enough to still own my first car, a 1967 Camaro which I purchased back in 1981. Great condition, I have fun with her at shows.

  11. Russ

    Enjoyed the story and the yearbook photo…

    It’s great to have a photo of one’s favorite old car from back in younger years, but all the better to be in the photo with the car. One year Car Craft came to my Chicago suburb and the local Dog n Suds became a hot rod hangout like it had never been before. They got a photo of my old Sport Fury GT with me and my friends sitting on the front end, in the background but still visible – just a moment in time we didn’t even know was being captured. Remember when cars were strong enough (and we were light enough) that we could sit on the fender or hood without damaging anything? I lost my first copy of the magazine and it took me years to find another so I could have the photo again.

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