Naturally, the fish-faced fourth-gen Camaro left a lot to be desired in the looks department compared to the gorgeous split-bumper front end of the second-gen, and Randy regretted his decision almost immediately. It wasn't an entirely lost cause, however, because the late-model SS allowed Randy to develop a deep appreciation for the LS-series small-block. "The fourth-gen was my first exposure to LS motors, and I was amazed at how easy it was to get big-block power out of a reliable, lightweight small-block," Randy says. "All the carbureted motors I built in the past were very finicky as ambient air conditions changed, and required constant tuning. With EFI, I didn't have to deal with that anymore and the motor could adjust itself. Of all the motors I've built, I can't seem to find anything that makes as much power as easily as the LS platform."

Although smitten with the fourth-gen's balance of power, handling, and reliability, Randy pined for the timeless lines and character that only a '60s muscle car could offer. He sold the '99, then picked up a '67 Camaro that got the full Pro Touring rubdown with an LS1 and a C5 Corvette suspension. Soon he needed a new challenge, so he picked up a '66 Chevelle and proceeded to install an LS7 small-block, Wilwood brakes, and a Schwartz Extreme Performance frame and suspension. The A-body was such a crowd favorite that we featured it in the November 2008 issue of PHR. Despite having built such a sweet g-Machine, Randy still couldn't get his old '70 Camaro out of his head. He searched high and low for his old flame, and his hard work eventually paid off. With lady luck on his side, Randy found the second-gen in 2008, and bought it back without hesitation. The car had only logged an additional 1,600 miles during the seven years it lived with someone else, and hadn't changed much at all. "I left the car alone for a few months, but then decided to completely redo the Camaro with a modern Pro Touring feel to it. The first time I owned this car I learned that you can spend lots of money on a project and still end up with garbage," Randy says. "I definitely wanted to do things the right way this time around."

All the lessons Randy has learned during his numerous frame-off restorations in the past resonate from every nook and cranny in the Camaro. Every subsystem of the car has been painstakingly thought out, and every component serves a purpose. Take the engine, for instance. When Randy reacquired the second-gen, it had a 402 big-block and TH400 trans. With a supercharged Gen III small-block as part of the grand plan, Randy started with an LQ4 short-block for its boost-friendly 9.4:1 compression ratio and rugged iron block. Furthermore, the LQ4 block's 4.000-inch bore spacing allowed for enough intake-valve-to-cylinder-wall clearance to top it with GM L92 rectangle-port cylinder heads. Additional displacement comes courtesy of a K1 4.000-inch steel crank and rods, and Wiseco pistons for a total of 402 ci. Matched with a Howards 224/242-at-.050 hydraulic roller camshaft and a Magnuson blower set to 8 psi of huff, the LS small-block lays down 623 rear-wheel horsepower. All that grunt is backed by a Spec twin-disc clutch and a Tremec T56 Magnum six-speed trans.