Rebuilt Big Block: 1968 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible

The owner of this 1968 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible openly acknowledges that it isn’t perfect and that it is really a project car. However, it does come with a freshly rebuilt drive-train, so maybe this would give the next owner a good point from which to start. Located in Franksville, Wisconsin, you will find the Corvette listed for sale here on eBay. The auction for the Corvette was set to open at $22,000, but so far there have been no bids. However, there are 27 people who are currently watching the listing.

If the Corvette has a real potential weak point, then this may be the body and paint. The car has undergone a repaint at some point in its life and giving it a close look over, I have come to a couple of conclusions. The first is that I don’t believe that the Corvette started life painted in this particular shade of blue. There is evidence around the car that it rolled off the production line finished in a shade called International Blue, but this paint appears to be significantly lighter. The second is that I get the impression that the repaint is not of the highest quality. There is certainly evidence of cracking and peeling, and I think that there will be a lot of stripping involved before a fresh coat of paint is applied to the car. Of greater concern to me is the fact that the owner does make mention of the fact that the door gaps are slightly off. This is something that I would probably want to investigate personally to ensure that the car is structurally sound. The Corvette is also missing a couple of pieces of the grille and the gas cap, but sourcing replacements shouldn’t be too difficult.

The owner is pretty candid about the interior trim of the Corvette and says that it could really do with being replaced. He rightly points out that there are a number of trim items that are cracked or damaged. When you start to add together new carpet, new covers for the seats, a new console, and sundry other broken or cracked pieces of plastic, then it probably does make complete sense to replace the entire interior. That way, everything will match again.

Powering the Corvette is a 427ci V8 engine, while power is sent to the rear wheels via a 4-speed manual transmission. One thing that we don’t know is whether this Corvette is a numbers-matching car. What we do know is that the engine, transmission, and the rear end, have all recently been rebuilt. In fact, the engine has only clocked around 5-miles since the work was completed, so it isn’t surprising when the owner says that it might need some tuning and adjustment for it to run and drive at its best. However, it does run and drive as it is now. The Corvette is fitted with power brakes, and while the owner says that it is also fitted with power steering, I don’t see a pump in this photo. But in one of the others, I can see the power steering pump laying on the ground.

For me, this Corvette has one fairly significant question mark hanging over it. This revolves around the structural integrity of the vehicle. If it is compromised by major rust issues, then we have a problem. If the car is actually structurally solid, then it offers a world of possibilities. I openly admit that it will represent a fair amount of work to have the car looking its best again, but it is certainly possible to achieve this. With a freshly rebuilt drive-train, it represents an intriguing car, but is it a project that you would be willing to take on?

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Comments

  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    Buy it right, get all the parts, and you’ve got something worthwhile. Would closely check the rear end work to see why the rear of the car is hiked up. Paint looks like old lacquer which is a bear to get off. Can’t put today’s paint over it so whoever gets this one has some work to do. You could make a good looking car out of this one.

    Like 3
  2. CCFisher

    A few observations:
    1) With the engine having been out of the car for a rebuild, its numbers-matching status is surely known, I can’t imagine someone offering a numbers-matching Corvette without triumphantly announcing it.
    2) Build quality in 1968 was quite poor, was it not? Poor initial quality will only get worse after 50+ years. Could that explain the poor panel fit?
    3) This color appears to be LeMans blue. Although I, too, see darker shades of blue here and there, I can’t tell if the variance is real or a trick of the camera.

    Like 3
    • Llouis200

      The quality of the 1968 was bad at best. I bought and sold Corvettes in the late 70’s and that year was one we used to call the two seat Edsel .

      Like 6
    • Joel S

      Build quality was not good. Having said the car needs restoration, those issues will easily be taken care of by someone that cares when reassembling. As of design issues, most of those fixes came out over the next several yeas and could easily be incorporated. I would not run from this car for those reasons. Yes frame and birdcage structure not being rusted out are more important. Wish him the best with this sale.

  3. gbvette62

    The seller claims the car has power steering and brakes, but there’s no brake booster and that’s not a Corvette pulley on the PS pump shown. The center link seen in the under car shot, is for manual steering, so I’m guessing someone was hoping to convert it to power steering and brakes.

    The door gaps probably aren’t a big deal, it’s pretty typical of 68-69 roadsters. The doors are heavy and tend to sag. For 1970, Chevrolet added alignment pins and receivers to convertible doors, to limit the problem. New hinge pins and bushings, and maybe some body mount shims, usually fixes it.

    Personally I’m not a big fan of 68’s, there are just too many hard to find and expensive, one year only parts on them. But for someone wanting a 68 roadster, this might be a good project……if you could get it for $15K or less.

    Like 4
  4. DonS

    Wouldn’t a sagging frame or hinges drop the top of the door down opening up the bottom? The last picture in front of the truck above look like the door is open more at the top and tight at the bottom. Maybe they just hung the door poorly.

  5. Llouis200

    There is a good chance the frame is bad. So much can go wrong with a 1968. The only one I would look at if you could find one is the L88.

  6. Jimbosidecar

    I’vr always heard, since about 1969 that tyhe 1968 convertible Corvettes are the one year and one model to be avoided. I used to have a ’67 big block convertible. I could never afford it today.

  7. JOHN Member

    $22k starting bid for a 68 Corvette kit? I don’t think so…

  8. George Mattar

    68s had horrific build quality. Truth be told, all C3s did. I have owned a 71 454 air coupe and now have a 73 coupe. While I made it My business to study these ca5s for the last 44 years, I know the problem areas. RUST and vacuum issues with headlamp doors, etc. The engines, transmissions and rear ends are reliable if you don’t wind the tech up to 6,500 every day. Keep them out of direct sunlight, it destroys fiberglass. The color in the door jamb looks to be International Blue, not many were painted this color. And as someone else mentioned, there are many 1 year only parts on a 68, mainly the headlamp doors and the main doors thenselves. If you can buy it cheap, go for it.

  9. TimM

    427 with a 4 speed doesn’t sound to bad to me!! I wouldn’t mind taking it for a spin!! This car would look 50% better with some nice wheels on it!!!

    Like 1
  10. ctmphrs

    All it needs are some caps and trim rings. Nothing looks better on a vette than rally wheels

    Like 2
    • leiniedude leiniedude Member

      Exactly ctmphrs, I will say that Cragars come in second on C3s in certain colors.

      Like 1

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