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bjoeaull
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Theres a local small liquidation type auction place in my town tomorrow selling a car along with some other random things. This vette seems to me to be a rather interesting find. Its a 69 stingray convertible with a 427 m22 rock crusher. Though I cant tell from the listing if its #'s matching or not. It sounds like its in great shape but cant view it til tomorrow morning when they auction it off. Is this a rare valuable vette or just normal run of the mill. Basically should I take the time to check it out to see if it goes cheap? Haha! Its yellow with both black tops by the way, heres a pic, the only one.

vettejpg.jpg

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I'm by no means an expert, but what will really dictate if its valuable or not is if its an L88 option car. L71 is far more run of the mill, and nothing really valuable, L88's are RARE and worth big money... I doubt its an L88, but who knows. Maybe you'll get lucky?

 

As an option code on the 1967 to 1969 models, L88 was an almost secret offering. Chevrolet actively discouraged L88 orders from dealerships and the public. Just what was all the fuss about? The L88 was capable of 171 mph at Le Mans and sported more than 500 horsepower. It was developed for the track and never intended as a boulevard cruiser.

 

The L88 was first offered to teams such as Sunray DX Motorsports who contested Corvettes in events such as the Sebring and Daytona. Packed with factory competition hardware, the L88 package was an ordering option that made the Corvette a pure race car. Only 20 cars were made in 1967, largely for racing, but nearly 200 L88s were ordered on the C3 platform.

 

At the heart of the L88 package was a 427 similar only in block casting to the big-block engine first offered in 1966. After two years of development, almost every other component was reconsidered for power and racing endurance. The engines were all built at the Tonawanda, New York plant and featured the CanAm-spec aluminum heads with 2.19-inch intake and 1.84-inch exhaust valves.

 

At almost half the price of the L88 engine, the L71 officially appeared to offer the same performance at a marked discount. However, GM was fudging the numbers to keep the L88s off the road, making the L88 essentially the hidden, more potent, option. The L88 even donned a warning sticker on the center console that emphasized only racing fuel was adequate for the large valves and radical timing. While the L71 and L88 shared the same displacement, L88's took the big-block theme a step further by adding a strengthened crankshaft, 12.5:1 pistons, solid lifter, cold air induction and a 850 CFM dual feed Holley carburetor.

 

As with any racing car, the L88 left out the fan shroud, choke and often, the heating system. With its exhaust removed, and running on racing fuel, the L88 was capable of 600 horsepower which was more than enough to take class victory at the 1967 Sebring 12 Hours. On the road, and far above GM's 435 bhp figure, the L88 can claim anywhere from 550 to 570 horsepower in production trim.

 

The L88 included much more than just an engine upgrade. Mandatory factory upgrades included a Muncie M22 Rock Crusher or M20 Hydramatic Transmission, power-assisted heavy duty brakes, an F41 heavy duty suspension with new coil springs and dampers, G81 positraction differential and a special cowl induction hood. Furthermore, interior options such as air conditioning, a heater/defroster system and a radio were were not available. After all was said and done the the L88 doubled the price of a standard Corvette.

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Thanks Dylan, I assume its probably not an L88. Not talking huge money, but since its not really a car auction, wondering if it will go cheap. Seems like the M22 and the 427 make it fairly special, not crazy rare. But I don't study corvettes much. But still i dont know if its #'s matching.

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Little searching and found Chevy produced 2,722 L71 cars in 1969 so they're not exactly rare, but I'd imagine it'd be more desirable than the standard 350 cars. If you can grab it cheap it might be worth it... if nothing else you pick up a clean looking '69 to play with for a little while. If you hit the lucky car lotto and it turns out to be a numbers matching L88 then all the better LOL.

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Haha true, not sure I can make it out there or if the wife will allow it but fun to think about . Wish I knew more details, I really don't even know how to tell if the numbers match in that scenario.

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Dylan gave all the info I was going to regarding the possibility of snagging an L88.

 

Good luck at the auction, let us know how much you buy it for. ;)

 

Haha, nice assumption there! Wish it were that easy. Trying to figure out assuming it is in good condition what it may be worth if its not an L88. So that if it goes cheap, I'll know it going cheap, lol!

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Haha true, not sure I can make it out there or if the wife will allow it but fun to think about . Wish I knew more details, I really don't even know how to tell if the numbers match in that scenario.

 

Figuring out if its a matching #'s car would be hard to do at a glance... you'd have to find the casting numbers and all that. Not sure where they are on the vettes, but I can't imagine its something you can see easily at an auction.

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Figuring out if its a matching #'s car would be hard to do at a glance... you'd have to find the casting numbers and all that. Not sure where they are on the vettes, but I can't imagine its something you can see easily at an auction.

 

If I go, the way to approach it would be buy it with the assumption its not matching #'s, price wise, then hope it is! lol I do see it does not have the l88 hood.

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Looks to me that they seem to go for anywhere between $25k - almost $40k maybe more if its #'s match and immaculate. I looked at current bids on ebay and sale price on Barrett Jackson for that info.

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Really tough to cram a condensed Corvette buyers guide into a one paragraph response, but numbers matching easy to detect, up to a point. Lots of fakery going on, although just looking at those tires I would assume it's just a '69 Stingray with a 427. Who cares if it is numbers matching, if it's a nice car at the right price. You may get lucky, I just bought a legitimate one owner Corvette at an estate sale, but it's not real valuable. Best of luck. If you have a little time pick up the Corvette Black Book by Michael Antonick, a really handy spotter guide.

427 came in 390, 400, 435 and 430 HP flavors, 430 being the L88.

Call me if you some specific numbers.

Bruce

818-621-1423

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Really tough to cram a condensed Corvette buyers guide into a one paragraph response, but numbers matching easy to detect, up to a point. Lots of fakery going on, although just looking at those tires I would assume it's just a '69 Stingray with a 427. Who cares if it is numbers matching, if it's a nice car at the right price. You may get lucky, I just bought a legitimate one owner Corvette at an estate sale, but it's not real valuable. Best of luck. If you have a little time pick up the Corvette Black Book by Michael Antonick, a really handy spotter guide.

427 came in 390, 400, 435 and 430 HP flavors, 430 being the L88.

Call me if you some specific numbers.

Bruce

818-621-1423

 

How does a person easily figure out if its a 390, 400, 435, 430? First glance what would you say its worth, I know thats a tough one to answer. Then, what would you say is a good buy. I think to assume its nonmatching is safest. As I doubt anyone will be able to figure it out that day unless they tell us.

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Regardless of everything mentioned it looks to be in good shape. It would always be fun to have a Corvette like that for the right price.

 

Personally I'm a partial to the 62's and 66 Vettes since those are what I grew up around at our house.

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Regardless of everything mentioned it looks to be in good shape. It would always be fun to have a Corvette like that for the right price.

 

Personally I'm a partial to the 62's and 66 Vettes since those are what I grew up around at our house.

 

I kinda like those a touch better! My dad has a 59 resto mod, its sharp too.

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Ok, peeps, the wife gave me approval to check it out and possibly buy if it goes cheap. You guys know as much as I do on this thing at this point. Please help me try and value it. Keep in mind, I'm thinking buy, play with it, then potentially if I decide to, take it to barrett Jackson to sell in scottsdale if I think its worthy. So I need to buy it good so I don't get hung, lol! Thanks

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How does a person easily figure out if its a 390, 400, 435, 430? First glance what would you say its worth, I know thats a tough one to answer. Then, what would you say is a good buy. I think to assume its nonmatching is safest. As I doubt anyone will be able to figure it out that day unless they tell us.

 

As someone mentioned, factory would have a decal right on the air cleaner, but lots of people fake their cars to be something else. Also, correct, should be a spec plate right on the console.

Working from recall, engine number should still be stamped at the front of the engine, just below the right head, motor number should match the VIN, not complete, but you'll recognize the assembly sequence numbers.

Head P/N:

3919480: 427/435, iron head

3919842: 427/435, alum head

3931063: 427/390-400 hp

3946074: 427/430 alum head

I won't type all the engine suffixes here, but that also will clue you in. Since this is just an estate sale I would assume no one has gone to ant length to fake / clone the car into something it isn't.

Mid 20's would be a great buy even if it isn't an original motor. I wouldn't be surprised to low 30's which might still be fair. Like everything, market is a little soft right now.

Again, good luck, wish I could be there. Hope some of this helps.

Bruce

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Well thanks for all your help guys I went down and checked out the vette today and decided it was a touch rougher than I'd be interested in. Plus it was not the original motor, but I learned how to find it so that's a win!

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No, I had a crazy busy day so I left before it went, it had about 45 min til it went when I decided I didn't want it so I bolted! lol But I did learn a lot, had my father in law meet me there in case I got serious with it. He's a gm mechanic and has been one for like 40 years!

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