KEN’S "KOPPER KAT"
We purchased this 1969 Super Bee in August 2002 from its’ owner in Stony Plain, AB, with 51,638 miles on the odometer (low miles = issues). This Super Bee was sold new at Chinook Chrysler in Calgary in late 1968 and has the same 426 engine and 4-speed tranny it left the factory with. The car has the (T5) copper metallic exterior with an (IT) tan vinyl roof and the (H2T) saddle tan bench seat interior, along with power steering, power disc brakes, power windows, rear window defogger and a (10 watt) factory 8 track (that probably ate numerous 8 track tapes over the years). It is a Track Pak car with the bullet- proof 9:75, 3:54 ratio Dana differential and as standard equipment with the Hemi, came with the (N96) Ramcharger fresh air hood.
When we started working on this car we had to install the seat belts as they were in a box in the trunk. We had taken the car into Edson for a mechanical inspection and that’s when we discovered whoever worked on the axle (back in 1985) did not set up the axle end play properly, causing the rear axles to walk in and out as you were driving the car (there was nothing wrong with the steering box). We rounded up axle bearings and seals and set up the proper end-play and everything was back to normal. Also when the car warmed up to operating temperature all the windows inside fogged up, indicating the heater core was leaking. We took out the heater box and replaced the heater core. The car also came with an "A" body 4-speed shifter, for some unknown reason. Your knuckles would hit the dash whenever you shifted into first or third gear. A proper "B" body shifter was installed.
Dave Halliday from the Edmonton Journal saw the Super Bee at Powerama and did a write up in the May 27/05 Edmonton Journal. There were two identical Hemi Super Bees, same colour, engine, tranny and all options sold at Chinook Chrysler. The other one now resides in Somerset, Kentucky. The Bee is definitely a joy to cruise down the hi-way in, with an 8-track tape pumping out 10 watts of music for our driving enjoyment. The Super Bee now sits with a total of 52,825 miles. We have had the Bee 6.5 years and added another 1,187 miles on the odometer.
FEATURES OF THIS CAR:
1 of 177 2 door H/T Hemi Bee’s built for USA and Canada.
1 of 92 Hemi Bees with the 4-speed transmission.
1 of 12 Hemi Bees exported to Canada.
We placed the car in the Chrysler Registry and as of January 2008 there was a total of 58 Hemi Super Bees listed.
The car was finished for the 2005 car show season where we took in shows at Calgary, Las Vegas, Nevada, Kalispell Montana, Bellevue Washington, Edmonton, Red Deer and numerous towns throughout Alberta. The car was well received at Las Vegas, as Robert Wolf, with Mopar Collectors Guide Magazine did a photo shoot and featured the Super Bee in the Sept. 2005 issue with a four-page layout. It also caught the eye of David Newhardt (a well known photographer in the car world), who took pictures for a hard covered book called "Muscle" Americas Legendary Performance Cars.
(Surprisingly, the first time we saw this car was after attending a car show in Irricana in 1997. Some Northern Mopars members decided to cruise to Drumheller to view a fellow club members’ collection of rare Mopars. This fellow had owned the car for 12 plus years & had only put 200 miles on it over that time frame!). After acquiring the Super Bee, a previous owner told us not to drive the car, as it wandered badly at highway speeds and needed a new steering box (more on that later). The car was restored in 1985 and from then, until we purchased the car in August. 2002, there were only 1,169 miles added to the odometer. It had changed ownership 3 times in a 17-year period.
Another issue was when the clutch pedal was pressed down there would be lots of grinding and rattling coming from the bellhousing, as the wrong pressure plate was installed, allowing the clutch fork to grind on the pressure plate springs (correct clutch and pressure plate were installed).
There was also a heck of a rattle coming from the rear of the car when you took your foot off the gas pedal. Whoever installed the over the axle exhaust pipes never centered the pipe prior to welding causing it to rub on the frame. (Installed a new exhaust system).
The main reason this 1969 Super Bee kept such low mileage is that prior to 1988 someone had pulled the engine out and in the process damaged the wire for the oil pressure sending unit and soldered on a thicker wire so once the car had warmed up and you stopped, the oil pressure gauge dropped to "0". We hooked up a master oil pressure gauge and drove the Bee again. The master gauge indicated there was 48 lbs oil pressure at idle, when the gauge on the dash read "0". We felt good about that. A new engine compartment wiring harness was installed at this time, everything works proper again.
I guess the Bee had lots of issues and nobody took the time to look into them. After working all the bugs out we decided to do a complete restoration. The Bee got treated to an engine and transmission rebuild, radiator and heater core were re-done, new fuel and brake lines with a master cylinder, all new front suspension, rebuilt dual carbs and a new gas tank, exhaust system and wiring harnesses, all date coded hoses, plug wires, voltage regulator, coil, along with proper battery cables and a new paint job, brought the super bee up to 2005 standards.