Author Topic: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project  (Read 10805 times)

SP Steve

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1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« on: May 09, 2017, 11:24:37 AM »
I bought a 74 455 Trans Am, my first Trans Am and my first classic Pontiac. I've started detailing the engine compartment and I plan to go through the car front to back with a every-man, budget friendly restoration.  I don't plan on doing any major disassembly and I plan to use spray paint for just about all of the painting.  I think you can achieve a good weekend car show / driver quality restoration this way.

Being it is my first Trans Am I'm sure I'll run into some problems along the way. I'm hoping that joining some forums will be a good source for sharing my project and getting help from guys with more knowledge.

Take a look at what I've done so far if your interested.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-0wNLg6w8s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJ0MNuJfbwg

NOT A TA

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2017, 12:18:42 PM »
Welcome Steve! Nice car.
John Paige
Lab-14.com

pontiacstogo

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2017, 01:12:21 PM »
74's are OK I guess  :-P

Welcome!
1974 Trans Am - 400 4 speed 3.42 rear.


SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2017, 01:28:16 PM »
Welcome Steve! Nice car.

Thanks, John!  Nice to be here!

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2017, 01:30:34 PM »
74's are OK I guess  :-P

Welcome!

Thanks, Pontiactogo! Beautiful T/A you have!! 

Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2017, 01:30:34 PM »

roadking77

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2017, 06:22:19 PM »
Nice looking car, looks like you have a couple of other classics as well.
Finished!
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79 TATA 4sp-Next Project?
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85 T/A - Sold
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Jack

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2017, 07:16:23 PM »
Welcome to TAC, so it was not as advertised... it's better than most projects, looks like you are having fun restoring it.




Regards, Jack

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2017, 01:35:56 AM »
Nice looking car, looks like you have a couple of other classics as well.

Thanks!  Yes, had a bunch of cars over the years, I think the cars I have now will be my keepers.  The 79 Cutlass will be my last big project, It'll be 455 Olds powered and made into a Hurst/Olds clone.

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2017, 01:38:00 AM »
Welcome to TAC, so it was not as advertised... it's better than most projects, looks like you are having fun restoring it.

Thanks, Jack!  Yes, no use crying over it now it is what it is.  I am having fun with it.  Really think it'll be a good looking and fun car when it is finished.

Idaho455

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2017, 07:42:51 PM »
I'm with pontiacstogo-74's are alright.  Welcome.
1974 Admiralty blue 455 auto

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2017, 04:04:59 AM »
Thanks, Idaho 455!  Nice looking T/A!

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2017, 10:43:16 AM »
I finished wiring the engine compartment.  I eliminated all of the crimp splices and tried to neaten it up. The harness has a bunch of splices in it and there is a small current draw on the battery with nothing on so the harness may have some issues.  It might be that I'll have to replace the harness at some point.

I put together another video showing some of the work I did.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tL8qfb8moQw

roadking77

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2017, 07:06:27 PM »
Nice man cave. I like the mustang. My wife has a '14 conv. I love to drive that thing, its got a v6 with tons of power, but I would love to drive one with some real punch.
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

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2017, 05:50:55 PM »
Nice man cave. I like the mustang. My wife has a '14 conv. I love to drive that thing, its got a v6 with tons of power, but I would love to drive one with some real punch.

Thanks!  The Shelby GT350 has 526 HP, the engine redlines at 8250 RPM.  It's the 5.2 Voodoo engine that only goes into the GT350's.  I bought it last August, the car has 335 miles on it.  After I finish the Trans Am I'll do the Cutlass and that'll probably be my last car.

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2017, 04:12:24 AM »
Making a bit more progress with the car.  I have the cowl painted and installed some new valve cover gaskets. 

Here's a video showing that work:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0byznTn2gOU

Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2017, 04:12:24 AM »

Idaho455

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2017, 07:21:17 AM »
Looking good. Can't wait until you start that bad boy up.

Those bolts on the cowl are some safety feature to keep the hood from coming forward in a wreck. There are other rubber bumpers that contact the hood. PM your email addresses and I can send pictures of them. I am aggravated by Photobucket right now or I would post a picture.I replaced all of that stuff also.

I assume those wheels are the Year One 17".  I am really considering those. They look good.

Mark
1974 Admiralty blue 455 auto

Idaho455

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2017, 07:43:44 AM »
Actually a handy thing to do is order Ames part number FV603A. Kind of expensive for a bunch of little rubber pieces but you will probably want to replace all those things anyway if they haven't been replaced.
1974 Admiralty blue 455 auto

Idaho455

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2017, 06:58:24 PM »
These are the rear hood bumpers.


1974 Admiralty blue 455 auto

mz-formula

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #18 on: May 29, 2017, 07:17:35 PM »
wouldja look at that!   I assumed bumpers went there.  My '75 has the metal disk still at those locations and that's it.   thanks for posting that!

Aus78Formula

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #19 on: May 29, 2017, 08:26:08 PM »
#545998 and should be 15/16 - 1" tall.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2017, 11:49:37 PM by Aus78Formula »

Ryoko

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #20 on: May 29, 2017, 10:48:50 PM »
Well blow me down. That's what goes there. My project car have two metal disks with a philips head screw in the center in those spots. I couldn't think of what those were holding.

Aus78Formula

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #21 on: May 29, 2017, 11:40:19 PM »
The originals used the metal washer bases impregnated into the rubber bumper. For years the repros have been rubber only and wrong height and shape  The pics above seem to indicate this has been sorted.

http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=67177.0
« Last Edit: May 29, 2017, 11:50:03 PM by Aus78Formula »

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #22 on: May 30, 2017, 02:56:31 AM »
These are the rear hood bumpers.



WOW!  I had no idea that's what I was supposed to have!  I ordered some bumpers from Classic Industries but the look just like the front bumpers only larger in diameter.  Thanks for posting the photo!  I'm a little further along than the video shows, I have the steering back in and I'm sanding the inside of the fenders now.

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #23 on: May 30, 2017, 03:01:38 AM »
I ordered these:

http://www.classicindustries.com/product/1974/firebird/parts/153216.html

I'll need to get the other bumpers from Ames.  Thanks for posting the part number!
« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 03:13:57 AM by SP Steve »

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #24 on: May 30, 2017, 03:11:35 AM »
Looking good. Can't wait until you start that bad boy up.

Those bolts on the cowl are some safety feature to keep the hood from coming forward in a wreck. There are other rubber bumpers that contact the hood. PM your email addresses and I can send pictures of them. I am aggravated by Photobucket right now or I would post a picture.I replaced all of that stuff also.

I assume those wheels are the Year One 17".  I am really considering those. They look good.

Mark

Yes, they are the Year One 17" Honeycombs.  I think they look fantastic, I really like them!  When I get my car lowered a couple inches they'll look even better.

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #25 on: May 30, 2017, 03:16:47 AM »
These are the rear hood bumpers.



WOW!  I had no idea that's what I was supposed to have, I didn't even know those bumpers were supposed to be there!  I ordered some hood catches from Classic Industries but the look just like the front bumpers only larger in diameter.  Thanks for posting the photo!  I'm a little further along than the video shows, I have the steering back in and I'm sanding the inside of the fenders now.

Aus78Formula

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #26 on: May 30, 2017, 04:39:37 AM »
I ordered these:

http://www.classicindustries.com/product/1974/firebird/parts/153216.html

I'll need to get the other bumpers from Ames.  Thanks for posting the part number!

Have seen these before in other shops with rubber bumper caps included. They mount behind the hood hinges and the hinge locates into the stud as it closes and acts as a stop from the hood moving back into the windscreen in an accident. The rubber caps shown are not used in this location but fit on the front radiator support hood bumpers. They may suit other models with the rubber bumpers but not 2nd gens. Note they are also mounted at 1" high from cowl to top of bolt, then lock the nut.



Note, used on 70-81 Firebirds but this diagram is from the 74 range.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 04:44:48 AM by Aus78Formula »

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #27 on: May 30, 2017, 06:32:55 AM »
I ordered these:

http://www.classicindustries.com/product/1974/firebird/parts/153216.html

I'll need to get the other bumpers from Ames.  Thanks for posting the part number!

Have seen these before in other shops with rubber bumper caps included. They mount behind the hood hinges and the hinge locates into the stud as it closes and acts as a stop from the hood moving back into the windscreen in an accident. The rubber caps shown are not used in this location but fit on the front radiator support hood bumpers. They may suit other models with the rubber bumpers but not 2nd gens. Note they are also mounted at 1" high from cowl to top of bolt, then lock the nut.



Note, used on 70-81 Firebirds but this diagram is from the 74 range.

That is what mine look like. I thought they were hood bumpers and were supposed to have a rubber cover, but obviously that's wrong.  Thanks for posting the pic and sharing the info!  Good to know what height to set them to as well.

hakitup

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #28 on: May 30, 2017, 01:48:08 PM »
Welcome Steve, nice car.

In my opinion 74s are the best, small rear window, 3 slat tail lights, no chrome rear bumper, raked nose, raked back front valance (basically tapering back every angle from front center), round headlights, front park lamps under bumper, and hood with some shape to it.

Tom H
"I don't know what you call it, I only know the sound it makes when it lies!!"

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #29 on: May 30, 2017, 01:57:33 PM »
Welcome Steve, nice car.

In my opinion 74s are the best, small rear window, 3 slat tail lights, no chrome rear bumper, raked nose, raked back front valance (basically tapering back every angle from front center), round headlights, front park lamps under bumper, and hood with some shape to it.

Tom H

Thanks, Tom!

I like the unique one year only combination of characteristics of the '74.  I had to have a small back window car and I think the 74 has the best looking grill and front fascia of the integrated bumper cars.  The more time I spend working on it the more I get attached to it.

pontiacstogo

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #30 on: May 30, 2017, 03:48:44 PM »
Here's how the rubber caps on the stops look on my 74;

1974 Trans Am - 400 4 speed 3.42 rear.


SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #31 on: May 31, 2017, 01:22:05 AM »
Here's how the rubber caps on the stops look on my 74;



Thanks for posting the pic!  Those look like the ones I ordered from Classic Industries.

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2017, 11:23:18 AM »
I have the steering back in the car. I had the steering box rebuilt and the control valve upgraded.  It's nice to start putting it back together!

Here's a new video that describes what I've done:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sv0_TjluT4



A couple photos:








SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #33 on: June 10, 2017, 03:35:57 AM »
I ordered the fender extensions John recommended and also ordered an adjustable rear hood bumper from Year One.  My other two bumpers that Idaho455 show in his photo are coming from Ames.  I should get the cowl weatherstripping installed next weekend.






« Last Edit: June 10, 2017, 05:14:41 AM by SP Steve »

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #34 on: June 10, 2017, 04:57:50 AM »





« Last Edit: June 10, 2017, 05:10:00 AM by SP Steve »

pontiacstogo

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #35 on: June 10, 2017, 05:50:04 AM »




The hood stops should be at either side of the cowl directly behind the hinges.  If you look at the hinges you'll see a 'fork' that is designed to catch the hood stops in a frontal crash.  This forces the hood to fold up in the middle instead of torpedoing into the windscreen.
1974 Trans Am - 400 4 speed 3.42 rear.


roadking77

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #36 on: June 10, 2017, 08:21:59 AM »
I think the centre bumper on my 77 is more of an elongated domed rubber stopper. My be diff. on the 74 though.
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

SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #37 on: June 10, 2017, 08:28:47 AM »


The hood stops should be at either side of the cowl directly behind the hinges.  If you look at the hinges you'll see a 'fork' that is designed to catch the hood stops in a frontal crash.  This forces the hood to fold up in the middle instead of torpedoing into the windscreen.

Yep, got those too. Thanks to you and Aus78Formula for sharing your info!  I set the top of the bolts to 1"



SP Steve

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #38 on: June 10, 2017, 08:32:26 AM »
I think the centre bumper on my 77 is more of an elongated domed rubber stopper. My be diff. on the 74 though.

My car didn't have anything there, I was going by Year One saying 70-81.  It was probably different from year to year, but this is my first Firebird/Trans Am so I don't really know?

pontiacstogo

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Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #39 on: June 10, 2017, 10:23:26 AM »
I think the centre bumper on my 77 is more of an elongated domed rubber stopper. My be diff. on the 74 though.

My car didn't have anything there, I was going by Year One saying 70-81.  It was probably different from year to year, but this is my first Firebird/Trans Am so I don't really know?

The stops only go at each end of the cowl (directly behind the hinges).  The other two bumpers are a different style like roadking77 describes.
1974 Trans Am - 400 4 speed 3.42 rear.


Re: 1974 455 Trans Am detail and restoration project
« Reply #39 on: June 10, 2017, 10:23:26 AM »
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