Joseph would like to thank: My lovely and understanding wife, Sheryl. My father, Joe Sr. Jim Seiler (The Humper) for the thousands of hours of help with fabrication and restoration. I would also like to thank Gene Millhouse and (Sparky) Mark Pullen for their time and knowledge. A special thanks to my late friend, Peter Gonalfo. Without him, I would have never been into this hobby as much as I am. I have never done anything without saying to myself, what would Pete say?
’68 Plymouth Barracuda
Owned by: Joseph O’Cone
- Engine: When this ’Cuda rolled off the assembly line it had a 318 as its source of thrust. During the restoration process that occurred over the first four years he owned the car, a 360 was enlisted to take command of the rear tires. Curiosity of a 318 engine combination got the best of him, and he eventually reverted back to a 318 swollen to over 348 cubes. Finally, Joseph settled on an engine that could do everything he was looking for, including the show-stopping punch, a late-model Hemi. Starting with a cast iron 6.1L block, Joseph and his good friend, Jim Seiler, cleaned the bore up .020-inch over, then threw in a factory forged crank slinging around Eagle H-beam rods and 11:1 forged Ross pistons. The factory aluminum heads were sent out to the experts at M2 Race Systems to unleash peak flow of 360cfm intake and 230cfm on the exhaust. The heads feature Comp beehive springs, cryo-treated stock rockers, 2.02-inch intake and 1.57-inch exhaust valves, Manley double roller timing chain, Comp pushrods, and stock lifters. While Joseph was busy installing an Edelbrock dual-plane intake with 500cfm Edelbrock AVS carbs, Jim was working on a cool little project. He modified a set of Indy valve covers to mimic a set of second-gen Hemi covers and give the engine a look-at-me-again quality. To pull this off, Joseph and Jim had to create a way to hide the coils remotely and plumb all the hoses and spark plug wires. Instead of figuring out a factory computer to work with his Barracuda, MSD took out the guess work for him with its Hemi 6 controller. Equipped with MSD coils, the Hemi 6 can adjust timing and rev limiters from a laptop program. Mark Pullen modified a Milodon pan to hold 8-quarts and uses remote dual oil filters.
- Transmission: Joseph rebuilt his automatic and mounted the shifter on the console. It features a ATI 5,000-stall torque converter and shift kit.
- Rearend: An 8 rear with Richmond 4.88 gears and Moser axles.
- Paint/Body: Joseph cleaned the car up and repaired the rust spots before sending it out to his father, Joseph O’Cone Sr., for the paintwork. Joseph Sr. drenched the car in FC7 Plum Crazy from PPG and continued the color on the new fiberglass VFN hood. As a finishing touch, HEMI was hand-painted on the side of the scoop.
- Interior: One of the first things to go was the column shifted automatic. A console shifter was installed with B-Body bucket seats. Using Legendary Auto Interiors as their main source for new materials, Joseph and his father recovered the seats, doors, headliner, and replaced the carpeting. AutoMeter gauges fill the hole in the dash to deliver the most accurate readings from the engine and other vitals. Somewhere in there you’ll also find a controller for the electronic exhaust cutouts.
- Suspension: It’s all stock, less a front sway bar and an added, adjustable pinion snubber.
- Brakes: Factory 10-inch drums front and rear.
- Wheels and Tires: The Barracuda rides on Centerline wheels at each corner. The fronts are 15x5.5 wearing 215/70R15 BFG radial T/A tires. Out back, the wheels are 15x8.5 and 275/60R15 BFG Drag Radials handle the Hemi power.