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66 P/T build

108677 Views 416 Replies 60 Participants Last post by  otiscc
I have owned several Chevelles over the years but my last 66 was by far my favorite. I have become obsessed with building a pro touring car and I couldn't think of a better car to start with then another 66. I have been inspired by another member here, "TommyComfort", aka Tom Farrington. I have admired his 66 from reading his threads here. I have never met Tom but by all accounts he is a great guy and he definitely has a sweet 66 Chevelle.

I gave up drag racing a year ago and that need for competition is still there. I really want to give Auto Cross a try and my build is going to be geared towards this. I have been looking for a solid 66 Chevelle for a few months now but I wasn't having much luck. I sold my 69 Camaro this week so my search for a new car intensified. Here is a picture of my Camaro right before it's new owner showed up. The Camaro is gone so my search for another Chevelle just went into high gear:)

I have traveled a lot of miles recently only to turn around and come home empty because the seller misrepresented their car. Well this weekend I found my new project. It's not perfect but as much as I drive and beat on my cars, it never will be perfect. I think it's a solid starting point and I'm more than a little excited to get started. It has new hotchkis rear lowering springs and a new front coil over spring conversion. Im not sure brand on front coil overs on the front yet. If these won't work with whatever suspension I choose then they will get sold. It has new wheels and tires that will go on another project down the road or get sold to recover some costs for new wheels. Here are a few pictures on the way home.

I have been thinking about what I wanted to do to this car long before I ever found it. My plan for this winter is to pull the body off to paint and detail the engine compartment, bottom of the floors and install ABC Performance mini tubs. The frame will get Abc Performance's frame notch kit and boxing plates. I will powder coat the chassis before the body gets put back on.

As far as suspension I have been researching Detroit Speed, Ride Tech and Speed Tech's suspension packages. I definitely want to do coil over conversion on both ends for nothing else but the ability to adjust ride height. All of these suspensions will far exceed my Auto Cross abilities at first so I guess my main concern is ride quality first since it will see a ton of street miles. Secondary would be track performance. I 'm hoping to get some input from some of you who have already done the trial and error and have found a nice package that works.

Power will come from an LS3 and either a TKO600 or T56. I know the T56 requires some serious tunnel mods but I hope to hear from some guys that have used either of these in a 66 A body. Rear end will most likely be a fabricated 9". The car needs wired and I will get that from American Auto Wire. I love the looks of the 66 and want to retain all of the moldings, emblems etc... i love that look. The interior will be much of the same. Stock buckets with better foam, stock door panels and dash. The biggest change in the interior will be the Dakota Digital VHX gauges to work with the LS3.

I know I want to run a 335/18 in the rear and as big as I can fit up front without excessive rubbing. Wheels are completely up in the air right now. I know I don't like the wheels that came on the car so they are definitely going. I found some I like from Forgeline but WOW are they pricey.

This thread will move slowly at first while I spend the next few weeks gathering parts. It should take off pretty good once the weather turns bad.

Thanks for allowing me to share my experience,

Mike McMasters
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Looks like a awesome start
If this is the start of your build thread, consider me subscribed. :yes:

You can do way worse than using the Farringtons as inspiration. Ton, Deb, and Sam are a killer team (and just plain'ole good people) and if you follow their lead, you will not be disappointed. Good luck on the build!

I look forward to seeing how your project works out. I like the plan so far.


I just read your build thread and I really like what you have done, it looks great!

You might want to check out the Tremec TKO transmission which fits without having to cut out the entire tunnel.
I have looked at a kit from Hurst Driveline that comes with everything including a tunnel kit. The only concern I have with the TKO is the 2nd- 3rd shift at higher rpm. Some guys swear they don't have the problem but there are just as many threads around where guys say they do have this issue.

I know liberty Gear supposedly has a fix for this but then you are almost at the cost of a T56. Decisions decisions:D
Sunday I finally got a chance to install my new lift. This is something I have wanted for years but never quite got around to getting. It's going to make life so much easier. Only thing I have left to do is drill for the floor anchors and I'm sweating it because I have radiant floor heat.

I spent hours the day before we poured the floor, measuring and taking pictures. I knew exactly where I wanted to put a lift in the future and laid out the pex tubing accordingly. I will probably not have any issues but I'm still freaking out a little. Wish me luck, it will get drilled tonight.

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I finished the shop 2 years ago, I don't know why it has taken me so long to get the lift. Every time I'm bench pressing a transmission from my back, I cuss a little and say I'm ordering a lift tomorrow:) I finally kept my word
Yeah a lift is a awesome helping hand
I talked with Hurst Driveline about a TKO600 and Dakota Digital about the new VHX gauges today. Hurst Driveline told me I would need to get a SGI-5 box to get the VHX gauges to work with the electronic speedo due to the TKO being a 2 wire speed sensor and the gauges being a 3 wire setup.

When I called Dakota Digital their tech said it will be fine without the SGI-5 box and their gauge would work with the 2 wire system on the TKO. Does anyone on here use a TKO with the new VHX gauges? Looking for some real world experience.

No feedback on the VHX guages, but they are in my future as well. I have a T56 and the floor mods are totally worth it.

Atlas lift- that's what I have. I've had mine for 4 years with no issues!
Best of luck with your build!
Awesome. LS with a 6 speed is "the way to go". Bit of work getting there but well worth the effort in my opinion.
I have 411 rear gears, LS-2, Tremic 6 speed, and she cruises down the freeway at 70 MPH at just a tic under 1400 RPM's.

If the floor and interior are nice in yours I would look at a keisler or something similar 5 speed that didn't require tunnel surgery. JMO
I agree..I'm leaning towards the TKO600 for just that reason. It still requires some tunnel mods but not as much as the T56.

And please don't forget to black out the Grille extensions just outside the headlights. That's a pet peeve of mine!
What about one of the new Legend 700 5 speeds, no tunnel mods required so they say...
My buddy Jason (136679ss) just got one from Jody. I'll pick his brain a little and see if this may be an option for me.

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