2020-B1-9

Author Topic: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400  (Read 4686 times)

T A Troy

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #80 on: March 04, 2020, 05:13:51 AM »
 Car looks great! I would look for a good name self etching primer for that job.

 Troy

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #81 on: April 14, 2020, 10:57:06 PM »
Its not hard to imagine the last month and a half has been interesting for everyone. I myself have been adjusting to things as need be. On a positive note I have been making a lot of progress on the 72. One of the biggest jobs with this car was cleaning, cleaning and more cleaning. There has been quite a bit to clean on this car, but the good thing is that once cleaned things look really good. I'd rather be cleaning dirt and grime than dealing with corrosion issues.
I spent a lot of time cleaning and prepping parts that were powder coated. The sub frame was in good shape, but even with a good power washing still was pretty filthy. I took a few pics of the inside of the sub frame rail on the passenger side. There at one time was something living there for sure. Fortunately whatever it was a clean tenant and left no corrosion behind. I used a spot blaster from Harbor freight to help clean up some areas and it worked pretty good. The Radiator core support was in great shape and turned out pretty good also.

 Last week I dropped off probably about 100 or so items to be powder coated. The list compiled of the frame, core support , brackets and pretty much everything else I feel would benefit from being powder coated. I get a pretty good deal from a local machine shop that sandblasts and powder coats. I have used them before and they do a great job. I picked up everything Monday and I was real pleased to get it all back so quick. Given the limited amount of business going on I was happy to get that done.

I also managed to drop off the hood, doors, fenders, trunk lid and other body items at my painter. Fortunately he is still able to stay in business as well. Fortunately if it is drop off and pick up business that is okay with the state guidelines.

Today I sprayed the underbody with Lizard Skin sound deadener and ceramic coating. It went on pretty well, and I plan to top coat it with a satin Black urethane. I will also spray the inside as well once I can finish cleaning and masking it off.

I also took apart the doors and beyond the dirt build up , they look real good on the inside. I also cleaned up the window tracks and the rollers all looked decent. The power window motor worked properly , but I will clean them up and re lubricate them. All the door parts and hardware also cleaned up pretty well too.

I started cleaning the firewall and firewall duct areas. Like everything else, a lot of dirt, no corrosion issues. Just a ton of cleaning up. I also remove a lot of dried out seam sealant, cleaned the area and applied new sealant.

I cleaned the rear axle and had the housing powder coated. For now I plan on keeping the 3.08 rear, but going with a posi unit. I also with add rear disk brakes to replace the stock drums. I am going to use the backing plates from Scarebird using the drum in hat parking brake. It looks like a pretty decent set up and shouldn't be too difficult to do at this point.

So now I am at the point of getting the car prepped to go the body shop for bodywork and primer. I plan on having the car primered and door jambs painted. Before that I will have to install the front and rear suspension so I can get it to a roller status.

Like some, I am trying to make the best out of this whole COVID distancing. It has been able to allow more time to work on this project, but honestly I am looking forward to getting back to regular life. 
Jim

I plan to upload some pics on progress here soon, but photobucket is having issues right now..
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Nexus

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #82 on: April 15, 2020, 06:17:30 AM »
Great progress and I can't wait for pictures

Lizard skin: Goes on over bare metal or on top of a primer and then painted?
Charlie

79 Esprit but like many, it will be a T/A clone
(19 years and counting but still have her)

roadking77

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #83 on: April 15, 2020, 06:46:18 AM »
Sounds like your moving right along Jim, no rust is def. a bonus. I am in the same boat with my 79. Other than a couple of small holes in the floor my car is solid. Much nicer to clean, sand and paint than clean, cut and weld.
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

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #84 on: April 15, 2020, 10:04:10 PM »
Great progress and I can't wait for pictures

Lizard skin: Goes on over bare metal or on top of a primer and then painted?

The Lizard skin is applied of a primed surface or scuffed painted surface. It is pretty easy to apply but you need to use the recommended spray gun because it is really thick stuff.
Jim
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

RamblerRacer

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #85 on: April 16, 2020, 11:22:20 AM »
Glad to see you are able to use the most of the time to make progress on your project
I'm working from home but able to get down to the shop to work on my TA.
His shop is also allowed to remain open.

Stay well
Jim

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #86 on: April 20, 2020, 10:59:12 PM »
Today I put a coat of Urethane primer on the cowl /firewall area. I sanded it all down and cleaned it pretty well. I also applied new seam sealer in areas where it was dried out. Tomorrow I plan on painting it satin black.
I am also very seriously considering a 5 speed manual transmission swap.  I prefer manuals over automatics, however that is just a personal reason. I am looking at the TKO600 and had a pretty good conversation with American Powertrain. I try not to impulse buy but I am about 85% of the way to making that decision.

The undercoating I sprayed last week, turned out pretty good. I used Raptor bed liner on top of the Lizard Skin. In my opinion it was overkill, but it does provide a for an excellent shell. I will say the combined texture of the two is pretty obvious, otherwise it should be able to withstand pretty much anything the road has to offer. Honestly, a good coating of one or the other would have been more than adequate. It did dry to a semi gloss finish and the surface texture will still allow to be cleaned easy.

Tomorrow I plan on spraying the inside with Lizard Skin after I finish masking of a few more areas. Hopefully time permitting over the next several days I am going to start putting the sub frame and suspension back on to get to a roller status.

Jim











1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

roadking77

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #87 on: April 21, 2020, 07:50:51 AM »
Nice clean work. That underneath stuff should add some quiet to the ride as well. I wanted to keep my 77 close to stock and left the underside in 'primer'. That car is pretty loud going down the road. On my current project, going in a different direction I think I will simply clean off the dirt and put a heavy coat of the bed liner on. See if it makes a diff.
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

MNBob

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #88 on: April 21, 2020, 08:50:29 AM »
Mine is undercoated and I would not say it is loud going down the road.  I replaced the factory deluxe sound insulation with the Thermo-Tec sound insulation and could not tell a difference.

I am totally happy with my TKO600.  It shifts easily (I have the AP "White Lightening" shifter).  With the 3.23, the gearing is perfect for me in all gears.  It is about 1900 rpm at 70 mph and it cruises easily at that speed.  Plus with the deep first gear, it is like having a 3.73 off the line compared to the old 4 speed.
« Last Edit: April 27, 2020, 09:19:23 AM by MNBob »
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

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #89 on: April 21, 2020, 09:43:50 PM »
Mine is undercoated and I would not say it is loud going down the road.  I replaced the factory deluxe sound insulation with
the Thermo-Tec sound insulation and could not tell a difference.

I am totally happy with my TKO600.  It shifts easily (I have the AP "White Lightening" shifter).  With the 3.23, the gearing is
perfect for me in all gears.  It is about 1900 rpm at 70 mph and it cruises easily at that speed.  Plus with the deep first gear,
it is like having a 3.73 off the line compared to the old 4 speed.

I am glad to hear you liked that combo with the TKO. Right now the rear axle is being rebuilt, and I found out the original axles with no good. I am glad they were checked because they appeared to be ok, however when I had them checked they were out of tolerance.

I sprayed the inside today with sound deadener, and tomorrow I will apply the ceramic coating. Also going to put on the dynamat once I get that done. If my calculations are correct then this car will be soundproofed and stealthy! :)   
Jim
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #89 on: April 21, 2020, 09:43:50 PM »

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #90 on: April 30, 2020, 12:23:30 AM »
This last week I sprayed the cowl and firewall area and I was quite happy with the results. I used Eastwood’s 2K urethane chassis black. I was very happy with how it worked. That stuff really sprays well and has a very good look once finished.

I started installing fuel lines and brake lines while it was still on the rotisserie. I got a set of brake lines from inline tube and it was so much easier to install when you can twirl the car on its side. I also started installing bracket and th e parking brake cable., again this is much more enjoyable to do standing up and opposed to being upside down, and underneath the car.

I applied dynamat on the interior floor. I chose the pre cut kit and it does work well and reduces the amount of time and effort installing it. The pre cut kit is for 70-81 F bodies , so while it fits well it is not perfectly exact, but it goes on where it supposed to go and serves its purpose.

I decided to go with a TKO600 5 speed transmission. Personally I love manual transmissions. I am really looking forward to that install. I also had the rear axle rebuilt. I disassembled the axle and cleaned it quite well then had it powder coated silver. Although I originally planned to rebuild it myself, I had a local shop rebuild it. I chose a posi unit with 3.23 gear ratio. I also replaced the axle shafts with new 30 spline shafts.

So now I am getting closer to I getting the car off the rotisserie and back on 4 wheels. I went with a PTFB suspension. The PTFB suspension kits work quite well and I have been quite happy with them. The only non PTFB suspension parts are going to be Del a Lum bushing for the front and rear. I also got a new steering box from PTFB. I chose the 600 series gear box and I have heard some really good things about it so I look forward to seeing how it goes.

My goal is to  get it rolling and then off to bodywork and partial paint ( jambs , sill etc). Then it will be to install the drivetrain.

I love seeing the car coming back together. This is the part of the project I enjoy very much, putting clean, new or refurbished parts on it! :)
Jim




























1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

roadking77

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #91 on: April 30, 2020, 07:57:46 AM »
You do great work Jim, but i thought this car would be in paint by now at the pace you work! LOL
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

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #92 on: May 06, 2020, 11:05:14 AM »
I have been making more headway on the Firebird this week. I am going with a Vintage Air Sure Fit AC setup, so I decided to use the mounting plate that Scarebird offers. Honestly it is very simple and does provide for a sturdy support and eases install. I just did a quick mock up, but it really works very good.
I also made a plate to cover the outside A/C box opening. I just cut a piece of sheet metal and tack welded in. I applied seam sealer around the outside and inside. Although I didn't make that panel area completely flat, the cover does make it look a little cleaner in appearance.

Last week I sent out the original steering column to have it refurbished. Internally the steering column had some real issues, it kept binding up. It turned out the ball joint was cracked and broken. As well as some other issues that were addressed the column arrived back to me on Monday and I was really happy with the results.

The company that did the work was Steering Column Services. The are located in Albuquerque New Mexico. They did a fantastic job on the column and were more than outstanding in customer service, needless to say the turn around time was exceptional. My column was pretty thrashed, but when it came back it looked like new. Pretty much all of the internals were replaced and I was very happy with it. Considering the amount of work the cost were fairly reasonable. All said and done it was still cheaper (about $200 less) than replacing the column. They also sell parts for columns and can offer great technical support too.

I got a paint and bodywork update this week as well, I have most of the external bodywork and pieces being worked on right now. The good news is that my paint guy is doing a pretty good job. He sanded the endura bumper down to the substrate and we were trying to reference some material on painting techniques for the bumper. I found a few reference on PY forums and forwarded it to him. I am hoping by the end of next week I will have the body back to roller status so I can send it to him for paint.

This week I will be getting parts I have been waiting for to start reassembling the front and rear suspension. I have been making a lot of headway on this project mainly due to decreased  full time work. Although I do like having the time to work on cars, I would like to get back to a  normal work schedule.

I have the motor and drivetrain to start focusing on soon and my motor should be done and ready in the next few weeks. Once the car is at the paint shop I think I will start working on the seats and interior stuff. I plan on changing from the original blue interior to all black. The outside color is going to be the Mazda color "Soul Red" so I think the black interior will look better than blue.

I think that I am getting over the hump on this project so I find that optimistic. I still have more work to do but at least the work will be a lot more cleaner and less dirty!

Jim





















1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #93 on: June 14, 2020, 08:44:51 PM »
Okay since it has been a month or so since last update, I figured I at least put up a progress report. Unfortunately I cant share the pictures just yet do to an issue with Photobucket.

I finally got the car off the rotisserie and back on all four wheels again. I installed the rear and front suspension as well as brakes. I went with Global West Del A Lum bushings front and rear. They were a fairly easy install and typical to installing standard rubber bushings. I used the suspension kit from PTFB and went with the 1LE package, That install went pretty straightforward as well, no issues. I also installed the sub frame connectors and I decided to bolt them in instead of welding them in place. For steering, I decided to go with the 670 steering box as well as the steering kit from PTFB.



For the brakes I went with a stock type set up in the front, I did use Hawk HP brake pads with stainless braided brake lines. I installed a 9" dual diaphragm brake booster that I had rebuilt by Power Brake Booster exchange in Oregon. They do really good work on boosters, I have used them before and have been quite happy with them.
The rear brake I changed from drums to disc. I used the backing plates from Scarebird and they installed very well. The only issue that I had (not directly related) was the rear axle. When it was rebuilt the axle shafts that were installed were 1/8" short, affecting the axle offset. I purchased some aftermarket spacers and that solved the problem. I got all the brakes installed and bled, and fortunately no leaks that I could detect. I really like the drum in hat parking brake. It is very effective and is pretty simple. I did make my own brakes lines on the rear axle which wasn't really that hard. Just some constant measuring to get it right. One good thing is that the rear brakes fit with stock 14" rally rims. I used this set as a set of shop tires. I plan on using 17"HoneyCombs from Year One.

So last week I loaded up the car and sent it to the bodywork shop. It will have all the body work done and primer application. Additionally the door jambs, sills and whatnot will be painted with color. The plan is once that is done I will get the car back install all the body panels, drivetrain and electrical and then it will go back for final paint.

I really want to work out the issues with Photobucket so I can post up some pics, so I hope to have that resolved this week.
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Nexus

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #94 on: June 15, 2020, 11:08:39 AM »
Just keep the momentum going!!
Charlie

79 Esprit but like many, it will be a T/A clone
(19 years and counting but still have her)

Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #94 on: June 15, 2020, 11:08:39 AM »


2020-B1-8


737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #95 on: June 17, 2020, 10:05:13 PM »
So here are some pics of the progress:
I installed the sub frame and also installed the sub frame connectors from PTFB. These SFC are install pretty simple either welded or bolted in. I decided to bolt mine in.





I chose to use a 670 Steering box as well from PTFB. I haven't used one previously but I have heard really good things about them.




I decided to use the Del A Lum bushings (Global West) in the stock A arms. They installed the same way stock bushings do. This is also my first time using them but they seem to work quite well.






I kept the front suspension other wise in stock form. I used the 1LE kit from PTFB . I have used their kits before and they a great fit when upgrading stock components. Afterwards I installed new disc and calipers and used the Hawk HP brake pads. I also decided to use a Rebuilt 9" Dual diaphragm booster. In my opinion it is a good booster and works well with the performance I am looking for.











 
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 10:15:11 PM by 737driver »
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #96 on: June 17, 2020, 10:09:12 PM »
Here are some pics of the Subframe installation:



1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #97 on: June 17, 2020, 10:37:58 PM »
I installed the rear axle and suspension using the same 1LE kit from PTFB. Although it was an Espirt model this car did have a rear sway bar. As an added measure I welded the upper mounting points on the frame just to add some extra strength to the mounting bolts. One of the changes I did make was replacing the rear drum brakes with rear disc brakes, I used the backing plates from Scarebird, and over all it was a pretty easy swap. I also had to fabricate my own brake lines but that really wasn't too difficult. It did take a little bit of time measuring bending and flaring the lines, but it really wasn't too time consuming. The nice thing about this rear disc swap is that the 14" Rally rims do fit without an issue. Eventually I am going to go with 17" Honeycombs from Year One. For now this is just a spare set I installed.















I later put on the steering column, intermediate shaft and the steering linkages. I put a set of 14" Rally rims I had as a spare set. I was very happy to get the car into roller status. I bled the brakes and that went pretty well, no leaks, good pressure. I also had to install the new brake and clutch pedal. I am swapping out the automatic transmission for a manual 5 speed. I went with the TKO600 with .64 overdrive. The transmission showed up this week and I am really looking forward to the swap.

Last week I put the car on a trailer and took it for bodywork and primer. The door jambs, sills and other areas will be painted with color, but mostly the car will be in primer. Once I get it back I will install the drivetrain body panels and electrical. After that it will go back for final paint.

It will be in bodywork for about 4 weeks and that has given me some time to do some late spring cleaning to my shop. I have a few other minor projects I plan on doing in the meantime. However I am really excited about installing the drivetrain and electrical and seeing the car come back to life!
Jim










1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

roadking77

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #98 on: June 18, 2020, 07:16:13 AM »
Looks great Jim,
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

roadking77

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #99 on: June 18, 2020, 01:06:34 PM »
Jim, what did you use for your brake lines?
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

Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #99 on: June 18, 2020, 01:06:34 PM »

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #100 on: June 18, 2020, 09:12:08 PM »
I bought a 3/16” brake line kit on Amazon. It came with the spring shielding and tube nuts. It wasn’t very expensive and I had a lot left over.
Jim
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Nexus

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #101 on: June 19, 2020, 09:09:11 AM »
Does look really nice!!
Charlie

79 Esprit but like many, it will be a T/A clone
(19 years and counting but still have her)

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #102 on: June 26, 2020, 01:07:22 AM »
Got some pics today from the body shop. So far the process is going well and good. Hoping that the week after next I’ll be putting body panels and drivetrain back in.
Jim










1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Jack

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #103 on: July 01, 2020, 04:22:47 AM »
Looking good,and it'll look better with some color on the car.
Jim, what's the story with the licence plate holder?




Regards, Jack

737driver

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Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #104 on: July 02, 2020, 01:11:40 AM »
The license plate holder I believe serves as a support piece for the tail panels. I’m not 100 percent sure but I believe that what it is there for.
Jim
1979 Trans Am- Heritage Brown -W72 (Pontiac 400) -4Speed-WS6
1972 LeMans Convertible
1977 Trans Am
1972 Firebird
1971 Firebird
1970 Firebird
1977 MGB  Roadster Convertible

Re: "MY 72" - 1972 Firebird 400
« Reply #104 on: July 02, 2020, 01:11:40 AM »
You can help support TAC!

 



2020-B1-3