Denise and Mark Stockwell’s ’67 Camaro pro tourer has a formidable presence thanks to a plethora of body mods, big rims and flush glass, finished off with a race-ready hue. But it took a ship-ton of work over several years to transform the Camaro into the beauty before you.
This article was first published in the February 2020 issue of Street Machine
“The fitment of the aftermarket gear – the glass, power windows and panels – were the biggest challenge,” Russ says. “The new turret had to be lengthened to meet with the flush glass. As the glass is exposed – without a mould – there is no leeway, so we modified the body to suit the glass where the gaps weren’t right. And we didn’t want to trim the glass as it’s from America with a long wait to get it. I think it’s one of the first Camaro flush glass kits in Australia”
“We’d previously owned a GTHO Falcon years ago, and wanted to get back into the muscle car scene now that the kids have moved out,” Mark explains. “We were looking for a project and decided that the ’67 Camaro was a good option. But it was a typical Mexican paintjob – it looked good but was far from it in reality.”
So, Mark and Denise shipped the first-gen Camaro to Russ Weaver from Weavers Autobody Restorations to deliver them a turn-key stunner.
The filler cap is a billet offering from RideTech flanked by LED tail-lights, with the entire centre section sprayed in a contrasting grey tone
“Mark began stripping the body back and found bogged rust holes, so he got in contact with me,” Russ says of the moment that began the four-year build and a relationship where both owners worked closely with their entrusted builder. “Mark and Denise had a lot of input – they chose the colour, the style of wheels and the trim.”
With the Camaro in hand, Russ and his co-worker Anthony Fuller checked the severity of dodginess, and the prognosis wasn’t good. It was deemed to be simpler to replace the beaver and quarter panels rather than fix the previous butcher job. Yet the flow-on effect can never be escaped, as the aftermarket items – born from different factories – generated a new set of problems. The Weavers team had to mould the separate pieces to fit the bill, while at the same time adding the required enhancements.
Tucked behind the leather boot panelling is a major part of the Camaro’s electronic infrastructure thanks to Craig from Logan Mobile Auto Electrics. Here sits the battery, Dakota Digital dash module, gearbox controller, central locking gear, fuse box, as well as a fitment manual created by Weavers
Speaking of enhancements, this 52-year-old Camaro has been utterly transformed thanks to clean lines via shaved drip rails, deleted window moulds, flush glass and door handles. Up front, the lower nosecone has been redesigned to incorporate ’69 Camaro driving lights, an aluminium chin spoiler and deleted bumper, creating a pumped-out, tough and contemporary look. Lower down, the guards now flow with the sills to sharpen the look while retaining the factory lines. At the rear, the bumper is recessed in tight, almost incorporated into the panels, while above, the now three-piece alloy boot wing sits like a factory item.
Poor paint choice can easily ruin a customised ride, yet Mark and Denise were on point with the crisp, icy Glasurit white, which stands apart from the factory GM options without distracting from the ample modifications. The finish is both classy and tough, paired with a contrasting grey, colour-matched from the Billet Specialties rims.
The 18in Hydros are aptly part of the Billet Specialties Pro Touring Series and offer enough width to hug the blacktop along with ample height to engulf the Wilwood discs and calipers. The grey and polished finish breaks up the white backdrop nicely
Powering the pro tourer is a highly detailed 376ci LSX cratey topped with a mirror-finished Bliss Custom Machining manifold, backed by a user-friendly GM 4L80E trans paired with a Quick 1 controller. At the rear is a Currie nine-inch with Truetrac, 3.55s and stout 35-spline axles.
Yet it’s the modernised suspension that elevates this Camaro to pro touring status. Detroit Speed goodies fill the underside, from coil-overs to a bolt-in LHD hydroformed subframe front end and QUADRALink rear suspension. Filling the fenders are 18-inch Billet Specialties Hydros, nicely finished off with Wilwood discs.
Sinister yet practical black-on-black covers every inch of the interior thanks to Shane at Image Trimming. Black leather is swathed over the MOMO Alfa Romeo buckets, matching custom rear pew, modified door trims, Detroit Speed tiller and the hand-formed aluminium centre console.
Not only does this Camaro handle superbly while looking spectacular, it’s also 100 per cent street-legal.
There are two good reasons that the rocker covers say ‘GRUMPY’. “It’s my nickname,” Mark laughs. “And I wanted a grumpy motor to match – a 427ci with stack injection, but I was talked out of that by an engine builder. Bliss engraved the rocker covers, as well as the intake”
“We had Dr Tim come in and engineer it,” Russ says. “Mark wanted everything ready for Denise’s birthday so that he could give her the Camaro, which was pretty cool. So, if she gets pulled over, the last thing that I want is for her to get defected.”
But when all is said and done, it’s the relationships formed that are this Camaro’s greatest feat.
Retaining its left-hand-drive status, the Camaro is steered by a Detroit Speed tiller down through an Ididit column. Grey coats the customised dash, door trim toppers and bespoke alloy console; inside, a B&M shifter neatly tucks through, with air conditioning knobs further afield
“I think that’s why the car’s so nice,” Russ says. “Mark and Denise took a lot of my ideas on board and would run things by me first.” Mark pipes in, laughing: “We have a running joke that it’s Russ’s car and we just paid for it. He’s taken it to the next level. We were rapt with how it turned out; it has exceeded our expectations.”
“But it’s not a show car; it’s built to be driven,” Russ says. “It’s Street Elite, sort of. The underneath isn’t detailed. Mark drove it straight home to Toowoomba, which is 150km from here in Beenleigh.”
Continuing with the less-is-more approach, a Dakota Digital dash neatly and succinctly offers all of the intel and then some without the need for a dozen gauges
But the car sure has its dance card filling quickly. After being unveiled at the Queensland Hot Rod & Street Machine Spectacular in June, the Camaro was rightly chosen as a Superstar and will be heading to Meguiar’s MotorEx in May 2020 – with both the owners and builders along for the next leg of the adventure.
DENISE & MARK STOCKWELL
1967 CHEVROLET CAMARO
|Brand:||GM Performance LSX376-B15|
|Inlet manifold:||Bliss Custom Machining|
|Injection:||Custom 92mm fly-by-wire throttlebody, Sonic Performance Bosch 550cc injectors|
|Fuel pump:||Holley EFI|
|Cooling:||AdRad radiator, Spal fan, handmade shroud|
|Exhaust:||Pacemaker 17/8in headers, 3in stainless system, Flowmaster mufflers|
|Gearbox:||4L80E, US Shift Quick 1 controller|
|Torque converter:||Billet 2800rpm|
|Diff:||Currie 9in, Truetrac, 3.55:1 gears, Currie 35-spline axles|
|SUSPENSION & BRAKES|
|Springs:||Detroit Speed coil-overs (f & r)|
|Front:||Detroit Speed hydroform subframe|
|Rear:||Detroit Speed QUADRALink|
|Steering:||Ididit column, Detroit Speed steering wheel and boss|
|Brakes:||Wilwood; 330mm rotors and six-spot calipers (f), 300mm rotors (r)|
|Master cylinder:||Wilwood, electric vacuum pump|
|WHEELS & TYRES|
|Rims:||Billet Specialties Hydro; 18×9 (f), 18 x12 (r)|
|Rubber:||Michelin; 255/35/18 (f), 315/30/18(r)|
Russ, Anthony Fuller and Raymond Pledger from Weavers Autobody Restorations for building the car and managing the project; Craig from Logan Mobile Auto Electrics; Shane from Image Trimming; Ralphy, Troy and Gremels for all their help, and everyone else who helped along the way.