Author Topic: 80 Yellow T/A build  (Read 13489 times)

BRDAPRY

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80 Yellow T/A build
« on: December 07, 2014, 05:07:31 PM »
Hello all.  I've seen a few of others projects posted here that gave me lot of inspiration to start my 1980 Trans Am again and thought I would share mine.
 A little history on this car
This is my first car I bought back in 1994 when I was a teenager. I drove it for many years and went through my fare share of Pontiac engines from the original non turbo 301 to a 400 then a 455. Not much luck with any of them so I went to a 427 big block Chevy with a Muncy 4 speed that worked great for awhile.  In 2002 I got laid off from my job and went to school for 2 years to learn automotive restoration and used my Trans Am as my class project.   I did the body work and some of the interior. I changed the color from white to Mellenium Yellow.  I was inspired by a  article in a 1990 Pontiac Magazine that had a yellow 1981 Trans am with the orange bird.  I loved the looks so that's what I am shooting for.  
  Back in 1998 I got myself a 1997 WS6 Formula Firebird and kind of put the Trans Am on the back burner for the last 14 years. Over the years I did a whole lot of mods including a LT4 conversion and a Monster Transmission 4l60E.   The Formula went through a rough life being my daily driver and many many trips to Pacific Raceways road course and drag strip.   After the Fomula hit 225000 miles it started falling apart and decided it was finished.  After much contemplation I pulled the LT4 and tranny for the Formula and put it in the 1980 Trans Am.  Sure a LS is the way to go these days but with the history of my Formula and the time effort and money I put in the LT1 I figured I would keep it alive by doing a heart transplant to his older brother


1995


1995
 
This was the first engine change.   400


This was when I started taking it apart for the first time back in 2001.  





All stripped down getting ready for paint at Clover Park Tech college 2002




 












« Last Edit: December 30, 2014, 08:46:28 PM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2014, 05:39:46 PM »
Here is the car that inspired my car to go yellow.

 

 On the way home after finishing the paint.
 

Big block in its new home






« Last Edit: December 07, 2014, 09:04:59 PM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2014, 06:03:46 PM »
I was never really happy with the engine compartment and didn't ever finish it.  
This last September I started the LT1 conversion along with a subframe off restoration


Here is both my rides.


Right before tearing into it once again




The big block went away to make room for the LT4


Yeah.  That was fun.  Not really


Looks like it belongs there


I spent a few hours stripping the paint and goop with a wire wheel




After a couple coats of chassis black from Eastwood it looks better then new







« Last Edit: December 07, 2014, 08:56:47 PM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2014, 06:19:05 PM »
I started getting to engine and transmission fitted to the subframe and crossmember.  
The headers from the 1997 firebird aren't even closed to working for this swap so I am on the hunt for a set that will work.
  I decided to take on the stand alone wire harness work myself.  What a pain in the butt.  


Engine and Trans mocked up. Had to move the crossmember back.  Other then that it bolted right in





While I had the engine out and free I wanted to give it a good freshening up. Found that it needs a lot more then I thought.  A couple of rod bearings have seen better days.  I'm going to have to wait a few months to get this fixed up





« Last Edit: December 07, 2014, 09:08:54 PM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2014, 06:28:25 PM »
While waiting to take care of the engine problem I started on the firewall, welding up all the extra holes and finishing the AC delete I never finished a few years back. 



And this is where I am right now.    Still a long way to go

Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2014, 06:28:25 PM »

4speed76

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2014, 06:37:06 PM »
Cool project, thanks for sharing.

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2014, 09:10:36 PM »
Thank you

Jack

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2014, 09:20:33 PM »
I like a yellow T/A but did not like it on the motor... I guess you are taking care of that now, cool project, it is nice to work on a car twice.




Regards, Jack

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Trans Am Project
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2014, 10:05:53 PM »
Yeah. I thought the yellow engine would look good until I did it. Not one of my best moves.

red77transam

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2014, 02:54:52 PM »
The yellow with that orange bird is an awesome color combo! Can't wait to see it done
Ben

1977 Trans Am - 400 Auto - Buccaneer Red - White Interior - Numbers Matching

onebohemian

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2014, 09:20:38 PM »
Sorry to high jack a bit, but I don't run into many folks with the same appreciation for the yellow.  Here's mine, unfortunately faded from almost 30 years of driving and age since she was painted in the mid-80s.  Wish I could put her back to the vibrant yellow yours is.



Good luck finishing yours soon.


BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2014, 09:39:10 PM »
That's a rare bird. Thanks for sharing.  I still have never put eyes on a yellow TA in person other then mine of course. I am hoping I will have it on the road by late next summer.  A trip to Australia is taking a lot of my funds that would otherwise be spent on the TA. 

Bayou_Flyer

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2014, 07:20:23 AM »
My yellow 77 was always a unique color during old car events....lots of black, almost never yellow. Such a great color on these cars, and it's nice to be different

1975 Formula 350/4spd
1979 TA, Blk/Carmine, W72 400/4spd, WS6
1971 Firebird, Red/Blk, 350/Auto
1977 TA, Goldenrod/Buckskin, W72 400/4spd

T/A Addict

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2014, 02:34:20 PM »
I love the yellow! Excellent Choice.
Is that a 9 in the garage too?
Jeff
2016 Victory Cross Country
TATA '72 455 HO Auto
79 T/A 403 Solar Gold
69 F'Bird P-Touring T/A tribute to be
2010 Challenger R/T  PCP

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2014, 02:41:54 PM »
My yellow 77 was always a unique color during old car events....lots of black, almost never yellow. Such a great color on these cars, and it's nice to be different

Awesome!!  Love the yellow TA pics. I would love to see more

Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2014, 02:41:54 PM »



BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2014, 02:44:56 PM »
I love the yellow! Excellent Choice.
Is that a 9 in the garage too?
  Thanks Bro.    Yup. That's my other hot rod. 


T/A Addict

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2014, 05:31:14 AM »
She's pretty too. 9's are awesome...... I always wanted one when they started building them but when it came time to upgrade my bike it came in a very close 2nd place to my Hammer. Took me quite a long time to decide Hammer or 9. Enjoy that beautiful ride and be careful out there.
Jeff
2016 Victory Cross Country
TATA '72 455 HO Auto
79 T/A 403 Solar Gold
69 F'Bird P-Touring T/A tribute to be
2010 Challenger R/T  PCP

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2014, 06:18:41 AM »
The Hammer is a really cool bike.   I had my eye on one before the smoking awesome deal presented itself on this M109R.  I love this bike but I'm kicking around the idea of selling it to fund my true love.  My TA

silver78

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2014, 09:46:13 AM »
Nice build.  I was 95% done with an LT1 swap into my 78 when I pulled it all out and put a 400 back in. Pm me if ya have any questions...your gonna have some hurdles with the AC compressor. 
MY BUILD THREAD:  http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=41850.0

Previous builds:
65 Galaxie sold
67 camaro RS sold
68 camaro RS sold
69 camaro sold
72 Nova SS
81 T/A 4 spd sold
86 IROC sold
88 Formula 350 sold
92 Z-28 sold
93 9C1 Caprice sold
94 Impala SS sold

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2014, 10:21:30 AM »
Nice build.  I was 95% done with an LT1 swap into my 78 when I pulled it all out and put a 400 back in. Pm me if ya have any questions...your gonna have some hurdles with the AC compressor. 
Thank you Silver. Your build post is one that inspired me to do this.
I am going non A/C so I'm lucky I don't have to deal with all that.   I'm sure I'll have a few questions along the way I will throw at you.  It seems the only hang ups I've come across so far is headers, wire harness and fuel delivery.  The harness is about 80% done. The fuel I think I'm going to go with a Spector FI tank or use Vette Works setup on the stock tank.   Headers are my biggest hang up. 

silver78

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2014, 11:43:35 AM »
The headers I used fit the D port LT1 head and the frame. I had to do some denting on the tubes on the driver side. If you lived closer id sell them to ya cheap.
MY BUILD THREAD:  http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=41850.0

Previous builds:
65 Galaxie sold
67 camaro RS sold
68 camaro RS sold
69 camaro sold
72 Nova SS
81 T/A 4 spd sold
86 IROC sold
88 Formula 350 sold
92 Z-28 sold
93 9C1 Caprice sold
94 Impala SS sold

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2014, 12:34:42 PM »
If you're willing to ship them I'll take em. Not sure what shipping would cost. It might be easier to buy them new. 

BRDAPRY

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Re: My 1980 Yellow Trans Am Project
« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2014, 07:41:23 PM »
Well it's been a slow process but I'm making some headway.   I finished the firewall and installed the heater and got the subframe back under.   I'm going to try to get the suspension all cleaned up, painted and installed by the end of the week before I have to go back to work from the holiday vacation.  




« Last Edit: January 08, 2015, 06:27:21 AM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #23 on: January 08, 2015, 06:34:38 AM »





BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #24 on: March 16, 2016, 10:19:39 AM »
It's been a long time since I've posted some updated pics








Finn5033

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #25 on: March 16, 2016, 11:57:29 AM »
Looks great. I see you bought some toys to update your brakes and suspension. Would you mind sharing what you bought? I am going to be restoring a 76 trans am with a 455 and 4-speed and would like to upgrade the brakes and suspension. You can PM me if you don't want to share all of the costs here. But I am interested in specific part #'s, costs and where you got them. Thanks

1975 ta

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #26 on: March 17, 2016, 06:38:51 PM »
nice! I have only seen 1 yellow t/a in person that was many tears ago

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #27 on: April 18, 2016, 06:00:28 AM »
Looks great. I see you bought some toys to update your brakes and suspension. Would you mind sharing what you bought? I am going to be restoring a 76 trans am with a 455 and 4-speed and would like to upgrade the brakes and suspension. You can PM me if you don't want to share all of the costs here. But I am interested in specific part #'s, costs and where you got them. Thanks
Sorry for the late reply.  The latest parts add are the new C5 Corvette conversion spindles with C5 Corvette Wilwood drakes. Wilwood master cylinder and prop valve. The upper control arms and G braces are from Protouringfbody.com.  Most of the parts are easy to find. eBay, summit, classic industries all have closed to the same stuff.   

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #28 on: April 18, 2016, 08:12:38 AM »
When I started redoing everything I was going to put the LT4 in then changed my mind and decided to put in a LS.  My father past away a few months ago. As I was going through his garage I found my old Pontiac 455 under his work bench.  I thought he sold it long ago.   Now I'm thinking how cool would it be to put that back in it but with a fuel injection manifold.   
 Weighing my options.   
I have the LT4 it just needs a lower rebuild and that's it.
     A LS would be reliable and easy to find parts for and fix but I have to find one which really isn't a problem just more $$$$$
    The 455 needs everything redone but it has a big coolness factor and I would need to find a transmission for it. Even more $$$$$$$
   Kind of curious what you all think

1975 ta

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #29 on: April 18, 2016, 06:48:45 PM »
put the 455 back in :-D

silver78

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #30 on: April 18, 2016, 06:59:23 PM »
I was 90% done with my LT1 swap and decided to rebuild the 400 and put it back in.  That was a vey expensive decision. Have over 4K just in the 400 motor build on top of the money for the LT1.  I sold the LT1 stuff at a loss of course.  Stay with your original plan unless you have deep pockets. You already have the LT4 stuff and there's still plenty of Hi Po parts for them.
MY BUILD THREAD:  http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=41850.0

Previous builds:
65 Galaxie sold
67 camaro RS sold
68 camaro RS sold
69 camaro sold
72 Nova SS
81 T/A 4 spd sold
86 IROC sold
88 Formula 350 sold
92 Z-28 sold
93 9C1 Caprice sold
94 Impala SS sold

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #31 on: April 20, 2016, 06:02:24 AM »
I was 90% done with my LT1 swap and decided to rebuild the 400 and put it back in.  That was a vey expensive decision. Have over 4K just in the 400 motor build on top of the money for the LT1.  I sold the LT1 stuff at a loss of course.  Stay with your original plan unless you have deep pockets. You already have the LT4 stuff and there's still plenty of Hi Po parts for them.
     I've been watching your build thread for awhile.  I was a little bummed when you went the other direction but I understand why you did it. 
   After a lot of thought I decided to keep moving forward with the LT4 So I can drive it for awhile. It's been almost 20 years.  Save up the parts for the 455 and put it back in a few years down the road.  My pockets aren't as deep as I wish they were.  Thank you for your input. 

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #32 on: December 18, 2016, 11:17:26 PM »
Update:   It been awhile since I posted anything.   I've been slowly plugging away at my project.  I finally rebuilt the LT1 and installed it with no clearance issues of any kind.   That was the easy part. Now comes the most intimidating part for me,  the stand alone harness.   I am still going back and forth on buying a harness from BP Automotive or tackling the factory harness. 
 I also started repairing the trunk pan that had a huge hole cut in it when I thought it would be a good idea to put a fuel cell back there. Wish i never did that.  It had a pefect trunk pan before I hacked it up. 




















FormTA

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #33 on: December 19, 2016, 01:52:30 AM »
Looks great! I actually think the LT4 look awesome!

79 Trans am 301 (work in progress) LS swap n progress
79 Formula 301 (Work in progress)
67 RS Camaro (Work in progress)
See the recurring theme???

blackhawk t/a

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #34 on: December 19, 2016, 02:02:54 AM »
Amazing build!! One of the more rarer swaps I have seen on here. What wheels are you going with?

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #35 on: December 19, 2016, 06:58:02 AM »
Thanks guys.   I haven't committed to a wheel choice yet but I am really liking the 18" Year one billet snowflake wheels.

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #36 on: January 31, 2017, 11:38:37 AM »
I finally figured out what wheel I'm going to run.  I wanted to go with the YO billet snowflakes but it would be forever to save up for. So I went with the 17" snowflakes and I gotta say I'm not disappointed in them.  They look way better in person then I imagined.   I was worried they might not clear my C5 calipers but there is plenty of room.   Now to figure out what tire to run







« Last Edit: January 31, 2017, 12:26:23 PM by BRDAPRY »

BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #37 on: January 31, 2017, 12:23:56 PM »
I recently aquired a disc brake rear axle out of a WS6 Trans Am.  I spent this weekend cleaning it up and getting it ready for a 3:73 gear swap.  The 4L60e 3:73combo should work great with this car.  It really worked well when the engine and Trans were in my 97 Formula.





I also tried my hand at Powdercoating. I've spent so much on having someone else do it I figured I'd probably save some cash if I just did it on my own.  I got a Powdercoating system and a sand blast cabnet from Harbor Freight and found I large toaster oven on Offer Up.  For the first few parts I couldn't be more pleased.










BRDAPRY

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #38 on: February 01, 2017, 05:27:50 AM »
My new Spectra EFI tank showed up. Side by side they are close but on the EFI tank the main line come out on the wrong side for my application.  I'm going to have to figure out what to do with that and the vent line.  I'm not sure if the vent line is supposed to go up to the engine or if I just leave it the way it is








FormTA

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Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #39 on: February 01, 2017, 06:22:35 AM »
I don't know if you checked yet but every one of those tanks that folks on this board have received the filter has fallen off to in shipping, mine included. It was just laying in the bottom when I pulled the sending unit out.

Just trying to save you work later.
79 Trans am 301 (work in progress) LS swap n progress
79 Formula 301 (Work in progress)
67 RS Camaro (Work in progress)
See the recurring theme???

Re: 80 Yellow T/A build
« Reply #39 on: February 01, 2017, 06:22:35 AM »
You can help support TAC!