Daniel's '70 Challenger is...
Daniel's '70 Challenger is a gorgeous restoration, and it was done without costing a million dollars or a second mortagage-evidence that a cherry Challenger isn't only reserved for the super rich.
On the same day Daniel brought his Challenger home in February 2001, he contacted his friend, Fred Gilmore in Sterling, Kansas. A few years earlier, Daniel had sold him a previously restored '70 Challenger. Fred told Daniel of a similar E-Body he remembered seeing at a Mopar show in Great Bend, Kansas, a year earlier. Inspired, Fred said he had the guy's phone number and was going to give him a call.
The guy still had the Challenger, but refused to sell it. The phone conversation with the owner ended with Fred asking if he could come and take a look. He says, "I visited with the owner at that time, but he had no intention of selling the car. I kept in contact with him over the next few months [until] finally in the spring of 2001, I convinced him to part with the car."
Fred became the eleventh owner of the car; the purchase of the Hemi Challenger included a complete list of all the owners and how many miles were on the car every time it was titled.
To bring the Challenger back to its proper state, Fred would need to conduct a complete rotisserie restoration and sent the body to Jeremy's Paint and Body Shop in Sterling, Kansas, where the car-numbered JS23ROB440241-would be repainted in Sikkens-brand base/clear. Lefty's Upholstery, from nearby Hutchinson, installed the interior using an N.O.S. headliner from the Acme Headlining Company. The restored Rallye gauges were by Performance Car Graphics in Tallahassee, Florida. Finishing off the interior is a refinished steering wheel by Gary's Steering Wheel Restoration in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
Daniel's Hemi was an all-original...
Daniel's Hemi was an all-original plant that was sent to Vic Fera at Brevard Cylinder Heads. Once the block was prepared, it was filled with nearly 100-percent Mopar Performance parts thanks to Mancini Racing's large cache of Hemi parts.
With only 39,560 actual miles on the odometer, the N.O.S. short-block with the correct part number and casting date was sent to Duane Saum of Saum Engineering in Wichita, Kansas, to complete the powerplant rebuild. Using all genuine Mopar Performance parts, except for the rings, the Hemi was married to the original 727 TorqueFlite that was restored by John Cope of Cope Racing Transmissions in Lowell, Indiana.
Completed in the spring of 2004 just in time for the All-Chrysler Carlisle show, Fred's beautifully restored Challenger sat next to Daniel's and Lee's on the show field.
It was during Daniel's many hours dedicated to restoring his Hemi Challenger that he befriended yet another E-Body aficionado, Lee Hofmann from Peoria, Illinois. Mostly interested in Six Pack and Hemi cars, Lee, guided by Daniel, located this B5 Blue Challenger-coded JS23ROB440219.
The Challenger was found in an ad in Hemmings Motor News, and Daniel was the second caller. He says, "The first caller offered the seller a $1,000 more than the asking price, which tipped the seller off that he priced the car too low. The seller was in New York City, but the car was in Chicago in his brother's care. His brother was away on vacation for a week, and he refused to sell the car until his brother got home."
Daniel-working on behalf of Lee-arranged to have a mutual friend meet the owner of the Challenger in a Chicago suburb. At that point, the seller began playing each of the interested parties against the other, but Daniel was finally able to settle on a price Lee could be satisfied with.
Just like it looked in the...
Just like it looked in the showroom.
The car was a nice driver in the condition purchased, but Lee wanted it perfect, so he sent it to Gary Plessinger for a complete restoration. Gary skillfully treated the all-original sheetmetal with more DuPont paint and restored the interior with Legendary materials. Once again, Vic Fera from Brevard Cylinder Head was asked to rebuild the 1969-dated block and the matching transmission. Just like Daniel's 426, Lee's Hemi was rebuilt using JE pistons and all Mopar Performance equipment supplied by Mancini Racing.
Amazingly, friends Lee, Fred, and Daniel ended up with three Hemi Challengers all built on the same day.
Using new Legendary seat covers,...
Using new Legendary seat covers, the rear bench and front buckets were recovered, and new carpet was installed. A N.O.S. headliner from Acme Headlining Company, Long Beach, California, was installed; the dash and gauges are all original.
The only non-Shaker Hemi in...
The only non-Shaker Hemi in the trio, Fred Gilmore's green Challenger sports a stout 426 with only 39,560 actual miles on the odometer. The N.O.S. block was sent to Duane Saum of Saum Engineering in Wichita, Kansas, for a rebuild. Using Mopar Performance parts, the Hemi was bolted to its 727 TorqueFlite that was restored by John Cope of Cope Racing Transmissions in Lowell, Indiana.