Digs projects

Robert's 68 Cutlass

This 1968 Cutlass 442 convertible is one we will always remember. As the story goes, Dan pulled his father’s car from a dirt floor building through a foot of snow to be winched into the Dig’s Rod Shop enclosed trailer (all without Dad knowing!). Our team put the ‘68 on the hoist for a closer inspection with Dan. After looking it over and discussing the options to restore this one or seek out another 442 in better condition to start with. Dan just grinned and said “no, I want to build this one for my dad, Ron. It has been through thick and thin with the family, and this is the one And oh, by the way, I want it to be a surprise for him”.

With the rest of the family in on the secret, Dig’s Project Management team set out to find all the parts and pieces to bring the Cutlass back to its former glory and back onto the road. A mandatory replacement ‘68 convertible chassis was located, acquired, sand blasted and painted Matte Chassis Black. Assembled with upgraded QA1 suspension all the way around, new steering components, wheels and tires made this a roller again.

The fabrication process of this classic muscle car was extremely intense. After separating the “good and usable” body panels from the deteriorated remnants, this shell received a new floor, trunk floor, drops, inner and outer wheelhouses, quarter panels, trunk deck, firewall, outer cowl panel, front fenders, and new inner fenders. After everything was aligned, welded, and hammered out, it went to the Body and Paint department to be smoothed out and receive the Victory Red and Black fender stripe paint scheme. It moved to the Reassembly area where it was put back together, including all new interior kit to match the original patterns, a new convertible top, chrome bumpers, grill/ headlight assemblies, badges and more.

This now restored 442 is powered by an engine that Dan himself completely rebuilt 15 years ago in shop class as a high school project. Mated up to the rebuilt 4-speed manual transmission and roaring through long tubes and 2 ½ inch dual exhaust this Cutlass sounds great!

After the project was completed, Dan coordinated with the rest of the family and our team to set up the surprise unveiling at Dig’s Rod Shop. Under the assumption that his car was in for a tune up and brake job, Ron had no idea what was waiting for him in the next room. We are honored to have been a part of this process and to share the moment with the family. Tears were shed and smiles were had all around as Ron checked over his car and reminisced with the family. Mom, Dad, and the kids piled in just as they remembered and christened the Cutlass with a family car ride to its cozy parking space for safe keeping. Ron has been enjoying putting miles on the ‘68 Cutlass 442 and proudly displays this ride at local car shows.