Restored Ride at Milwaukee Masterpiece
John Gunnell - March 27, 2014 08:21 AM
Troy Giles will show his 1969 GTO Judge in AugustCourtesy of Milwaukee Masterpiece
Joining the show field for the 2014 Milwaukee Masterpiece Concours d'Elegance will be a 1969 Pontiac Ram Air III GTO Judge, owned by Troy E. Giles of Pewaukee, Wisconsin.
"Our 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge has been restored exactly as it was when it left the Fremont, California, plant on July 14, 1969, on its way to Fred A. Carleson Pontiac in Salt Lake City," said Giles.
The 1969 GTO is equipped with its "born-with" 400-cubic-inch Ram Air III engine. The factory-rated 366-horsepower engine is mated to a Muncie four-speed transmission. Giles' Ram Air III GTO Judge was equipped at the factory with hide-a-way headlights, Muncie four-speed transmission and console, push-button radio, power steering and disc brakes, rally gauges, redline tires, and of course, "The Judge" package.
"Our GTO was restored over a 10-year period with every imaginable component being restored or replaced (with "New Old Stock" whenever possible). It was truly a labor of love," he said. The car has been restored in its original color: Carousel Red.
Every piece of sheet metal and structural part was acid dipped in large tanks, neutralized and then dipped in epoxy paint before having the correct finish applied. Each screw and fastener was carefully researched for the correct finish.
"Fortunately, the car spent its entire life (but for a few months preceding my purchase) in Southern California and Arizona," Giles noted.
During the dis-assembly of the car to prepare it for restoration, Giles discovered evidence that workers at the Fremont, California, plant, famous for such antics as attending work in a "1960's state of mind" and hiding bottles, cans and partially eaten lunches in parts of the assembled car just to irritate the eventual owner, had actually "signed" parts of the car.
The original rear bumper was somehow inscribed by a man named "Ray" before the chrome was applied. The name was evident even through the application of the chroming process. Like many muscle cars of the era that were produced on a factory line consisting of men and women rather than robots, the car became a testament of the time in which it was created -- a sort of social statement.
Thus, the personal touch of adding a signature here or there, tucking a half-eaten bologna sandwich into some recess, or placing a Coke bottle in the fender to produce a mysterious rattle was a sign of the rebellious attitudes of the times.
The event will be held Aug. 23-24. Visit www.milwaukeemasterpiece.com for details.