Author Topic: Project 1979 Trans Am  (Read 14648 times)

Grand73Am

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 9738
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #40 on: April 05, 2017, 04:43:29 PM »




I've been doing similar work on my front suspension, steering and brakes. This photo might contain an "oops". Hope you didn't forget to install the left upper control arm bumper  :shock: .
Steve F.

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2017, 08:33:20 PM »
@ FormTA, I'm probably gonna try to paint it myself because I'm cheap. lol Doing the firewall and floor was pretty easy. I'm just worried about doing an entire car where misses and tiger stripes are easily noticeable.

@ Jack, you always have words of encouragement. Thanks, it's appreciated on such a big project.

@ Grand73am HA, LOL! I pulled it out because I was afraid that I wouldn't be able to get the control arms to close up enough to thread the ball joint nuts without an engine to counter the jack. I left it in on the other side, turns out it wasn't an issue.

No Moa

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 136
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #42 on: April 06, 2017, 08:16:31 AM »
WOW!!!!
77 Trans am 400_4speed
78 Martinique blue 400_4speed
02 CETA
2014 Caprice 9c1.
2013 Caprice 9c1
2017 Ram 3500 (work truck)

mz-formula

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 751
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #43 on: April 06, 2017, 10:51:11 AM »
Looking great!  Keep at it!

FULZGOLD

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 251
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #44 on: April 06, 2017, 11:38:59 AM »
A friend taught me how to paint way back in high school. (80-82) He'd done a few dozen cars. I ended up doing about 5 myself with pretty good results. All single stage enamel. If I did it, I'm sure you can! It's just speed and distance...lol

Great work so far!

Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #44 on: April 06, 2017, 11:38:59 AM »

formula jg

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 651
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #45 on: April 07, 2017, 10:46:45 AM »
When your done with this project I can use a little help over here, don't worry it will feel just like home...snow and all...hehehe.

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #46 on: July 06, 2017, 02:31:02 PM »
Pic Update:















Everyone likes to notice and mention it when they see alcohol in my pics. THAT'S MOUNTAIN DEW!







Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #47 on: July 06, 2017, 02:39:56 PM »
I re-linked all my pics through Imgur due to photobuckets "Great Extortion of 2017".

roadking77

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 8758
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #48 on: July 06, 2017, 06:31:33 PM »
Thanks for doing that. I guess we will all get another pic. host and start over again. Its a shame all of this stuff is now lost, but oh well,  hope PB is happy!
BTW, nice work on the steering column.
Finished!
77 T/A - I will Call this one DONE!
79 TATA 4sp-Next Project?
79 TATA - Lost to Fire!
86 Grand Prix - Sold
85 T/A - Sold
85 Fiero - Sold
82 Firebird - Sold
'38-CZ 250
'39-BSA Gold Star
'49-Triumph 350
'52-Ariel Red Hunter
'66-BSA Lightning
'01-HD RoadKing

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #49 on: July 06, 2017, 06:45:13 PM »
Unfortunately, I forgot to take pics of the break down and rebuild of the column. It was rather easy, just very time consuming because of all the parts. I still can't believe how much filth was inside the column and all the grease inside turned to something like glue or very loose clay. I used this to help with the rebuild, it's a pdf entitled Inside the GM Tilt Steering Column by Jazzman: http://www.crankshaftcoalition.com/wiki/images/d/d6/Jazzman_Steering_Rack_Rebuild.pdf The column used in the pdf is for a tilt column from a manual Fiero but is close enough. I lubed everything, replaced all the seals, installed a new ignition switch, and painted it Carmine Red. I also bought a set of locks for the door and ignition that are all keyed alike. I'll add some pics of that soon.

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #50 on: July 15, 2017, 04:02:32 PM »
YAY! 4 wheels again!

I installed the steering linkage and column today. Then put the front wheels on. Next is the brake booster and master cylinder. Once I get the mystery trans clip figured out, the engine is going back in.




Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #51 on: July 18, 2017, 05:17:57 PM »
Finished up and bled the brakes. Engine and headers are next.










Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #52 on: July 24, 2017, 11:40:00 AM »
Installed my engine with the headers already installed. I only tried this because I saw an internet argument about if it could be done in a Firebird. I can say yes, it can be done. But it's not worth the extra hassle and very much depends on what headers you are running. I don't know who manufactured my headers, but the flanges kept getting stuck on my floor board. Going between a jack and the cherry picker you can make it happen.

Now, I gotta pull the engine back out to re-route the fuel return line; it's touching the driver's side header. I will be removing the headers for the removal and reinstall.  :lol: I will also fix all the paint I gouged trying to install an engine with the headers attached! :lol: :lol: In the end, it's not worth the trouble. Just tie your headers to the subframe, drop in the motor and tranny, and then attach your headers. It's a much easier procedure, IMO.









As a side note, I also installed a set of Inline Tube tranny cooler lines.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2018, 04:42:27 AM by Ford5of5 »

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #53 on: July 24, 2017, 09:09:52 PM »
Got the engine out and back in, only took a few hours. I rerouted the fuel return line and fixed the nicked paint. Also added jumper for solenoid upgrade. It's no contest, installing the headers after the engine is installed was 10x's easier. I did need to remove my oil adapter, though.










Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #54 on: August 20, 2017, 09:56:17 PM »
Photo Update

Here's a few pics of the tranny cooler line and battery cable clips, mostly for comparison:




I made my own steering column levers. This route cost less than $20. The cost and hassle of buying proper levers was just too much, for me. I posted this over in the Interior section if anyone wants more info on this.


























Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #54 on: August 20, 2017, 09:56:17 PM »



Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #55 on: August 20, 2017, 10:36:17 PM »
I've been taking a bit of a break from this project, but I couldn't keep my mind off of it. Of particular curiosity to me, is that the PO used a Torker II intake and a 600cfm E-carb. From what I've read this set-up shouldn't work very well. I never raced the car or used anything to gauge its speed, but it always felt fast. In my research, I came across one theory that said the volume of the Torker II made up for the small cfm's of the carb. I don't know, but if you're an engine guy I'd like to know what you think.

I took the front of the engine apart in order to find out what kind of cam was in there and also because my timing mark floated around a bit; I was expecting a bad chain. Turns out a floating timing mark is usually caused by a bad dizzy, intake leaks/vacuum disturbances or a poor tune. In my case, the dizzy weights were rusty and hanging up a bit; the chain looked new and had about 1* of slop. Also there's a lot of slop in both directions and noticeable wear on the dizzy gear. New dizzy and re-curve kit are en route.

I still wanted to know what the cam specs were. So, I made my own degree wheel and bought a cheap dial gauge from Harbor Freight. The cam spec'd at a duration of 204/225 at .050 with lift of .408/.432. Best I can figure it's an an older, generic grind. It had no id etched into it, anywhere.

Also on order, a Voodoo 256 cam and lifters, Lunati valve springs, and a Jet stage 2 Q-jet. My credit card is melting. I'll be using an early 70's factory intake. Using Comp Cam's Camquest puts my new combo at 305 hp at 4500 and 445 ftlbs at 2500. I had to use Comp Cams XE256 for the program to work. I have no idea how accurate my assumptions will be. Guess we're gonna find out! :lol: :lol:

Thanks to all the folks over at the Choosing the Right Combo posting for helping me pick a cam. There's so much to learn about cams that it is a daunting task to pick one.












« Last Edit: August 20, 2017, 10:45:01 PM by Ford5of5 »

Bale9

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 190
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #56 on: August 21, 2017, 12:05:19 AM »
Nice work.

Very creative with the indicator levers.

The front clip overhaul come up good too.

MNBob

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1642
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #57 on: August 21, 2017, 10:32:12 AM »
I think you will love that cam!  Should be the ultimate torque and good manners for the 400.  I am considering the same thing in a roller.  Please give us a report when get it going.
1979 TATA Extreme TKO .64
Hedman elite; Pypes 2.5; Borla XS; MSD 6A; Edelbrock intake; open scoop; modified Q-jet; Powermaster 150; 4 core radiator/Mark VIII fan; RobbMc mini starter; subframe connectors; solid body mounts; fiberglass rear springs; poly sway bar and link bushings; 81 master; D52’s; Blazer disks; 225/60 & 235/60 17's TrueContact's; relays for PW, PDL, lights; keyless entry

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #58 on: October 18, 2017, 01:32:43 PM »
I finished my cam install. It was really cool seeing how the degree wheel worked. IIRC, everything on the cam card came within 1 or 2* of spec. Pretty all right for my build, LOL. Kind of funny, every single time I replace an oil pan gasket I need to buy 2 of 'em. I have this dumb habit of forgetting that big torque wrenches usually don't work so well on the smaller side of the scale and I end up squeezing the gasket out. I think I've been through 4 or 5 on this engine alone. 15lbs is all that is needed!

I bought a new timing cover from Rock Auto. It's a fairly nice casting. The only issue was that some of the timing numbers are a little hard to read, but all the marks are clear. I painted them to make life a little easier. Also, I replaced the harmonic dampener. The old one was probably ok, but looked just a little iffy. The only issue is that the crank pulley bolts are metric.

The new distributor, also from Rock Auto, is real nice. The old one had rusty springs and weights that were getting hung up just a little. The vertical and lateral slop were noticeably too much; there was also a lot of wear of the distributor gear. These are the most likely reasons why I was getting a floating timing mark. I was able to fully drop in my dizzy at 11, 12, 1 and 2 o'clock with the #1 piston at TDC on the compression stroke. I also cleaned up an iron intake with vinegar and painted the engine, AGAIN, before reinstalling.

I then started hacking of my rear quarter. I only wanted to remove one side at a time, but my brother cut out the passenger side before I could tell him to stop. I put the new quarter in place just to see how it looks. Definitely gonna need some adjusting. That'll be my next post.

Here's my photo dump:


















































Cat Tax






« Last Edit: October 18, 2017, 01:47:06 PM by Ford5of5 »

formula jg

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 651
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #59 on: October 18, 2017, 04:58:56 PM »
Thanks for all the pics and details, it's all a great reference for us to use.

Just to go back to the dizzy, how much floating were you get on the old one?

I often wonder what is acceptable and if the more cam you have the more gyration you get at the timing marks.

LeighP

  • Jedi Council
  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 20609
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #60 on: October 18, 2017, 11:51:49 PM »
Great project.....love the home made control levers.
I see you've also got a feline Quality Assurance Manager......  :lol:
Regards,
Leigh

Sydney, Australia
1969 Pontiac Firebird 400 coupe (project)

Former Firebirds -
1971 Pontiac Firebird 455
1977 Pontiac Trans Am
1976 Pontiac Trans Am
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 convertible
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 coupe


Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #61 on: October 19, 2017, 12:58:59 PM »
My timing mark, when on a timing light, would easily jump around 3-4* before and after 10*; occasionally it would jump 30*. Idle was fairly smooth with no signs of an aggressive cam. I set my timing with a pressure gauge because of it.

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, the timing mark should appear static when viewed with a timing light. The exception would be aggressive cammed engines or worn parts.

That's Jeff, he's inspects all my empty boxes.

LeighP

  • Jedi Council
  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 20609
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #62 on: October 20, 2017, 06:04:36 AM »
Yes, the timing mark should be fairly stable under the light.
Regards,
Leigh

Sydney, Australia
1969 Pontiac Firebird 400 coupe (project)

Former Firebirds -
1971 Pontiac Firebird 455
1977 Pontiac Trans Am
1976 Pontiac Trans Am
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 convertible
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 coupe


Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #63 on: November 20, 2017, 09:54:02 PM »
Started installing the rear quarter. It's been off and on about a dozen times now. Adjustments weren't that bad. The AMD (advertised as new tooling) pressing isn't all that great, it's better than what I had. Overall, nothing that can't be handled.  Dare I say, it's sorta easy.


























« Last Edit: November 20, 2017, 10:01:52 PM by Ford5of5 »

Bill Boyle

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 33
      • Pontiac Street Performance
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #64 on: November 25, 2017, 02:50:04 PM »
I must commend you on your effort.  You've taken on a monumental project and inch by inch you're addressing each and every problem and solving it.  It takes a lot of discipline, aside from talent, to pursue such a project to the end.  I can see you're getting closer, my hats off to you.  Two thumbs up.  Very cool.   8-)
"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."


Jack

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 10222
  • 1971 Esprit TA Clone W72 1972 Formula 68 350 HO
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #65 on: November 25, 2017, 03:58:11 PM »
Very nice work, it's starting to look like a car again.




Regards, Jack

roadking77

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 8758
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #66 on: November 25, 2017, 06:31:21 PM »
I like your quarter panel straightening jig!
Finished!
77 T/A - I will Call this one DONE!
79 TATA 4sp-Next Project?
79 TATA - Lost to Fire!
86 Grand Prix - Sold
85 T/A - Sold
85 Fiero - Sold
82 Firebird - Sold
'38-CZ 250
'39-BSA Gold Star
'49-Triumph 350
'52-Ariel Red Hunter
'66-BSA Lightning
'01-HD RoadKing

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #67 on: May 12, 2018, 12:32:23 PM »
This massive update is the culmination of 6 months work.   :shock: :mad: :lol:









« Last Edit: May 12, 2018, 12:46:48 PM by Ford5of5 »

Ford5of5

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1081
  • I reject your reality and substitute my own
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #68 on: May 12, 2018, 12:40:44 PM »
So, I've been too lazy or too busy to do anything to my car. I wasted the winter and did very little. On top of that, I spent way too much time agonizing over which product to use for the roof seam. I've read and read and asked opinions. In the end, I flipped a coin to decide between using All Metal or short hair.  All Metal won the flip.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2018, 12:47:36 PM by Ford5of5 »

Grand73Am

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 9738
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #69 on: May 12, 2018, 09:44:53 PM »
I think you made the right choice. I've used All Metal, and Metal-2-Metal to replace the lead in body seams in many Classic Chevys I restored over a 30 year period, and never had a problem with it.
Steve F.

4wheeling79

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 347
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #70 on: May 12, 2018, 11:57:02 PM »
Good decision I have used both my self great products works every time glad to see you are back at it!

formula jg

  • Active Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 651
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #71 on: June 04, 2018, 11:36:25 AM »
Just catching up with this project and wanted to see how you've been progressing and must say I have not been disappointed. It must seem like it's taking forever but you are closer than you think, keep up the great work.

FormTA

  • Oracle Forum Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2893
Re: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #72 on: June 04, 2018, 11:56:11 AM »
I know we spoke but i don't remember what you decided but the repair came out great at that seam. Nice work. Now you can be proud again.  :D
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: Project 1979 Trans Am
« Reply #72 on: June 04, 2018, 11:56:11 AM »
You can help support TAC!