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 Bill Boyle's 79 TA Restoration Project--Part 1
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Oct 2013 :  09:27:05 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Today is 17 October:

During the last few weeks, I've been experimenting with different under the hood paints. Trying to match the original sheen of the various black parts is proving to be difficult. Most of the black paints available are lacquer based and while they apply easily lacquer is not as durable as enamel type paints. I've been fighting between getting the correct luster and acrylic lacquer offerings.

I've tried: Chassis black from Eastwood and NAPA (Martin Senour) as well as industrial Krylon semi-flat black. Also have tried Eastwood's and NAPA's under hood blacks which are not as flat as the chassis blacks. All of these are lacquer based and dry quickly for re-coating.

I've been to several car shows and have spoken with several hot rodders about what they used, most didn't remember. I should never have asked after they had a few beers. They weren't helpful.

I'm going to try Dupli-Color's semi gloss, which I believe is also lacquer based. Chemicals are not listed in detail on most of these products. Only Eastwood's stuff reveals it is an acrylic lacquer. If it's lacquer, lacquer thinner removes it easily with a rag.

What I also discovered was that what I had believed was the beginning of some surface rust on the frame was nothing more than dirt that cleaned up with soap and water. Any painted surface that was dirty and cleaned was smooth with no signs of rust under the paint. That was a relief--no rust repair needed.

Progress is slow as usual.

Tomorrow the grand kids are here so, I'll be doing "things" with them. ( I should introduce them to the proper use of automotive sandpaper so they can be helpful. )

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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js292
Sitting Bull

USA
128 Posts

Posted - 17 Oct 2013 :  12:46:18 PM  Show Profile
Have you looked into the SEM line of paints, they have a non gloss that may work.

http://www.semproducts.com/product-catalog/specialty-products/trim-paint/trim-black/

They have others too, I just don't have much time at work to look through them all.



71 Formula 455
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Merrik66
Cochise

USA
370 Posts

Posted - 18 Oct 2013 :  01:31:51 AM  Show Profile
I've used SEM brand. But, only as of recent. It's been a year or so since application but those parts have not been reinstalled yet so they I couldn't provide you any info on durability. In Tacoma, Theres an automotive paint shop which has a great reputation and theyre happy to assist in product choice based on experience from guys in the field and customer feedback. They speak highly of SEM brand automotive spray paint. Can't remember the basic chemistry but they do offer a "chassis black" ..not too glossy. Almost comes out a satin in my opinion. May be worth some exploration if anyone carries it near you. I think I paid about 13$ a can.
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 18 Oct 2013 :  09:37:18 AM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
I've never heard anything bad about SEM, always good. I've seen their rattle can primer do as good a job as 2k primer when doing a fender, etc. I used their plastic adhesion promoter and paint, etc to do a steering wheel i restored on my 66 truck, and it came out great and the paint seems durable thus far.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 18 Oct 2013 :  10:42:48 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
I was on the SEM website (www.semproducts.com) and didn't see any paint designated for chassis or under the hood. I've used SEM paints before, but see nothing to do the job.



"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 30 Oct 2013 :  10:35:44 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Today is 30 October:

This morning I finally got back to the TA. For the past 12 days I've been doing "other" things. We all know how that goes.

With the passenger fender and front bumper cover still off, it was time to tackle the bumper itself, clean it up, see what needed to be done. With it all cleaned up, there was little surface rust and the insert looked good and sturdy--no breaks no tears in it so it will be reused.

After spraying the bumper nuts to loosen them up, all nut/bolts were removed and the steel bumper assembly was removed from the chassis. It'll be wire brushed as necessary, treated, primed and repainted.

I also finished the steel cross member or bracing that holds the headlights. This piece was in excellent shape overall. Treated the rusty areas, primed and painted it. Then installed all new fasteners to hold the headlight cups. The chrome rectangular headlight bezels were cleaned and the chrome was buffed out. The assembled unit looks factory new.


BTW Phil--I started this thread 27 October 2010. It's 3 years already.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 30 Oct 2013 2:33:14 PM
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js292
Sitting Bull

USA
128 Posts

Posted - 31 Oct 2013 :  10:04:51 AM  Show Profile
Sounds like your having fun! Can't wait till I move so I can get started working on mine again.



71 Formula 455
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 31 Oct 2013 :  1:04:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Today is 31 October 2013--Happy Halloween

Things are getting tighter and tighter in the garage. Not much room to walk around (again).

The bumper was placed on a 6' board and clamped to my work bench. The other end is supported by one of my woodworking supports. The bumper, in turn is clamped to the board so I have good, flat work surface.

The bumper was cleaned up and looked really good. You'd think that after being exposed to the elements since 1979 there would be rust everywhere. Not so. Most of the discoloration was road grime and dirt. It took a while to get is clean. I touched some of the corners and edges with primer and painting it is in progress. The 2nd light coat is drying and the 3rd light coat will go on in a little while.

What I didn't want to do is to detach the support arms that fasten to the frame. Why? Because everything was in good alignment. However, I wanted to clean up the carriage bolts and nuts and repaint the arms to match the rest of the bumper. So, off they came. Again, they were rust free and are being repainted.

I choose Dupli-Colors Semi gloss black paint for these pieces. Why? Because moisture tends to run off or drip off glossier surfaces. Considering the good condition of the metal the glossy paint should work perfectly for the next 35+ years. It also looks good--real good.

+++++++++++++++
Here are two photos.

The first is the finished headlight support and the second is the bottom of the bumper. The bumper was freshly painted today.




"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 31 Oct 2013 2:09:24 PM
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rkellerjr
Many Feathers

USA
1260 Posts

Posted - 01 Nov 2013 :  10:49:12 AM  Show Profile
Lookin good Bill, steady progress will win the day! Wish I had room in my garage to do what you are doing.

Rich
1975 TA - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aR86YT69yeY
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Phil
The Great White Buffalo

USA
7215 Posts

Posted - 04 Nov 2013 :  09:03:57 AM  Show Profile
WHAT, no hole saw, cutoff wheel/sawzall holes to lighten up that "War Wagon" battering ram while its apart (ala VSE handbook)?

Bowties are for Pee-wee Herman. "Chevy": even the name sounds cheap, but not as cheap as your Pontiac will be with an LS transplant.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Feb 2014 :  11:32:33 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Another update: 2-17-14

Tonight the driver's side fender is being removed so I can lift up the radiator support and replace the rubber grommets that goes between the support and the frame. The one by the battery has broken down; the other side looks new. Both being replaced. Also, worked extensively on the rusted area below the battery tray. Old rust removed, treated it with POR 15 products. Two coats should keep it rust free.

POR 15 provides a hard non-porous barrier. It self levels too. A small area on the cowl was also treated with this stuff as well. After two coats, it later received "bondo" filler to remove all imperfections, lightly sanded, more "bondo," 320 sanding and then a light coat of primer.

I like this stuff; easy to work with. 3-4 hours dry time between coats. The self leveling eliminates paint brush strokes.

With the fender off, more clean up of the engine bay is ahead.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Feb 2014 :  1:35:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Photo below is shot of the inner fender on the driver's side (current state). All that surface rust on the rail needs to be cleaned and painted Lots of cosmetic work needed to freshen things up.

[BTW, front calipers, discs and brake pads are original to the car. ]


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Admin
Ye Olde Webmaster

844 Posts

Posted - 24 Feb 2014 :  07:26:05 AM  Show Profile
Update: 25 Feb 2014

The clean up continues. With the driver's side fender off, I'm scrubbing the frame to clean it and prep it for fresh semi-gloss paint. I'm using a degreaser solutions in water, water, Windex and lots of paper towels, followed by hot air to dry it. Surface rust is being treated with a wire brush, light sanding with 120 grit paper and followed with zinc phosphate that eats the rust and protects the metal. Afterwards, a light coat of primer goes on before the semi-gloss paint.

The brake lines are on this side of the car as you know and they are original to the car. Each has a wire spring surrounding them. They don't sparkle like new ones so I'm trying to figure out a good way to clean them up. Some of the steel brake lines have surface rust on them. That needs to be removed and treated with zinc phosphate too and then coated with a clear paint of some kind to keep moisture from getting to the steel so they don't begin to rust again. I'm not settled on any of this yet. I'm not sure what product can be used because each line should be "wiped" or painted on by brush or sponge--not sprayed. None of these lines will be detached for cleaning--all will be cleaned and refurbished in place.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2014 :  10:08:45 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 11 April 2014

March was stressful all for the wrong reasons. Four people in my life died. A close business associate (72); sister-in-law's mom (90); sister's son, my nephew (45) and a retired AF officer and car friend (69). Three of them were unexpected. Despite the emotional pain, a few things were done on the project.

The front sway bar and end links were removed. The sway bar was cleaned up with wire brushes, treated for minor surface rust, etched, primed and painted. New end links were ordered and received and it's ready to be re-installed.

The DS upper and lower control arms were meticulously cleaned, primed and repainted. The cadmium plating on the vac booster was pitted, could not be cleaned, didn't want it painted so it was shipped off to Brakeboosters.com for restoration.

While working under the car cleaning the rails and lower control arms, I couldn't help but notice the grime on the OEM styled Monroe shocks. This sort of grime is from oil that leaks out of the top of the shock and mixes with road dirt. While the car wasn't on the road that much, time alone causes the seals to go bad. So, off they came. Deciding on what shocks to install came next. Bilstein shocks were my first choice. However, I didn't believe the high cost would be justified--not enough bang for the buck--for the limited use my TA would see as a mostly garaged show car. [I had decided that because of where we live, auto crossing and drag racing was in the past.]

So, I thought a good gas shock would be the right ticket. Four KYB Gas A Just shocks were ordered. So, in the meantime, both front shocks were removed. One came out easily, the other required drilling holes in the top nut to get it off. Once removed it was evident that my suspicions about the shocks being bad was confirmed. They provided nothing to the front suspension. The new KYBs will be a day to night difference.

While sitting in front of the front brake calipers and looking at the original rotors and pads, I decided 35 years was long enough for them despite having little wear with 48K on them. [who needs brakes when you can down shift to help slow the car ]

New rotors with dimples and slots were ordered with new metallic pads. They are ready for installation....but there's more.

Cleaning parts has been an every day morning affair. When I got to the PS two rusty things stood out that I had to do something with. I wire brushed the steel vapor line that goes to the charcoal canister and the vapor line that runs from the fuel pump along side the cross member and joins up with the charcoal canister vapor line. Both are two piece units. They just didn't look good, now matter what I did. How to get them out to replace them became the big issues. I thought about simply getting some straight tubing and bending them to conform to the frame curves but opted for pre-formed ones that I thought could pop right in. Duh! Wrong.

These pieces may have been installed at the factory before much of the car was built. Once the radiator was removed freeing up the front of the car, I managed to tweak the vapor line here and there, bending it enough to get it out. When the new pieces arrive, the story will continue on how I get them back in. {Will Bill have to pull the engine? A cliff hanger.!}

Since I had to removed the radiator completely, dropping the fluid etc., I thought it best to take a good look at it. I noticed several green areas that are indicative of coolant leaking. So, rather than have to deal with a bad leak down the road, it was taken to a local shop for testing. This shop was inattentive to my needs so it was taken away from them. Lousy business and customer service. I looked and found another shop but could not find their shop when I drove there. Another hole in the wall outfit that disappeared. Finally, I discovered a radiator shop in business for many years, called them and brought the radiator to them for rebuilding. It should be ready for pick up today.

So, while sadness and grieving marked the month of March, I did get some solace being alone with my car.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 14 Apr 2014 :  07:46:29 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 14 April 2014

The radiator is repaired, however, the shop, despite telling them the radiator was going into a "restoration" for a show car, painted the radiator with gloss black. This is incorrect. The fins can remain gloss, you don't really see it but the side tanks need to be a semi-gloss. So, out came the solvent to remove the gloss finish. Some of it came off; the rest is being treated with remover and scotch pad.

I didn't repaint over the tanks because the shop applied to many coats and reminded me of an old Navy war ship that received too many coats of gray. The radiator tanks are almost stripped clean to the brass now. When it gets new paint, it will look like it should.


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 14 Apr 2014 07:47:39 AM
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2014 :  07:41:40 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
HPP has a 3-part series where Rocky is checking out the nuances of a very low mileage 77 TA. One forgets over just what a disorganized mess those mid 70 smogger engine bays were like.

It's a myriad of vacuum hoses, lines, and electrical wires, some exposed while others are covered going every which way. When you look at it the picture of the engine bay in HPP it's difficult to see the engine. It takes a real effort to look past all the mess to really see what's underneath.

For my refurbishing, these photos are very helpful. Funny, I don't have one photo of my engine when the car was brand new. Boy times have changed.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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rkellerjr
Many Feathers

USA
1260 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2014 :  08:23:35 AM  Show Profile
Lookin good Bill!

Rich
1975 TA - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aR86YT69yeY
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2014 :  10:32:09 AM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
Keep at it bill, i'm coming to the end of refurb and into just putting together clean parts on my 66 truck, and it's been a journey. You'll be grateful you took the time to clean everything up when it is all said and done. Slow and steady wins the race, and that's from as impatient a guy as you can find.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2014 :  1:12:36 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
I'll be posting a series of progress photos--

Here is one take on 26 Feb 2014. This shows some of the cleaning around the control arm. Compare it to the earlier photo of the wheel well. A lot more paint removal was ahead.


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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bnorris_74
Crazy Horse

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2014 :  6:23:59 PM  Show Profile
I feel your pain. When I did mine years ago there were no digital cameras. I took photos with a polaroid camera and have since tried to scan them onto my PC. They came out too dark to be of any use. I left the front fenders bolted to the body and removed the entire front end including the subframe,engine and tranny. Cheap was the name of the game back then and I used a 9 inch grinder with a HD cup wire wheel to remove most of the rust and crud. I had the a frames, springs and misc. parts hung from wires all over the garage when I painted them.
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Phil
The Great White Buffalo

USA
7215 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  09:38:28 AM  Show Profile
Brian, I've actually had some success with old photos by photographing the photo with my iphone and then using that as the new "digital" photograph. But any digital camera should work.

Bowties are for Pee-wee Herman. "Chevy": even the name sounds cheap, but not as cheap as your Pontiac will be with an LS transplant.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  09:39:38 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Here's a couple more photos. Both concern the radiator to frame supports. The first photo shows the support before it was disassembled. One was worse than the other but neither was salvageable. Rubber breaks down over time and the inner flange holding the rubber rusts out. Both will be replaced.






Note the green on the radiator. That shows coolant seepage where the tank mounts on to the header which holds the rows than run horizontally between the right and left tanks.

The radiator was repaired by a shop and should be free of leaks for many years.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  1:42:09 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: April 17 2014

I'm getting deeper and deeper into this project and running out of garage floor space. (again)

I called Jet-Hot today and have decided to have them re-coat the Heddman Headers. So, I'm in the process of removing the headers. For those who may not have done this of late, it's still a problem even with the fenders, radiator etc off the car. The ritual doesn't change. It does take a little less time because of the improved access. It's still not fun.

Here are the steps.
1. Convince yourself you have to do this. Accept it and get on with it.
2. Get the car up on 4 jack stands.
3. You will need a floor jack and a small piece of 2 x 4 to jack up the engine a couple of inches.
4. Remove the 3 collector bolts, nuts, and washers.
5. Remove the oil filter and housing. (prepare for some oil leakage; don't get it in your eyes)
6. Remove all but one of the header bolts; leave the pesky inside exhaust bolt in place but unscrewed enough so the header bolt can me moved through the keyhole slot on the header flange.
7. Remove each main engine mount bolt with floor jack in place under the damper. No pressure.
8. With jack and block of wood in place, gently, and slow lift the engine. NOT TOO MUCH as the distributor is still in place and you don't what to break the cap by pressing it up against the firewall.
9. Carefully remove the header from under the chassis.

Note: The passenger side is more complicated than the driver's side. Do the passenger side first.

+++++
BTW--working with a helper will speed things along.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 17 Apr 2014 3:18:06 PM
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Phil
The Great White Buffalo

USA
7215 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  2:05:03 PM  Show Profile
Good photos Bill. Keep focusing on the end result. The black bumper brace looks great btw! Liking that choice of sheen.

Bowties are for Pee-wee Herman. "Chevy": even the name sounds cheap, but not as cheap as your Pontiac will be with an LS transplant.
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bnorris_74
Crazy Horse

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  3:20:16 PM  Show Profile
quote:
Originally posted by Phil

Brian, I've actually had some success with old photos by photographing the photo with my iphone and then using that as the new "digital" photograph. But any digital camera should work.



Thanks Phil, I'll try that. I really think the photos have darkened too much since they were taken to be of any use.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 17 Apr 2014 :  5:30:31 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Well, I got the passenger side header out. It is rustier than I thought. Tomorrow, I'll remove the other one.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 18 Apr 2014 :  08:11:14 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
NOTE: One of the things that I'm finding very helpful is taking digital photos. Before, during and after photos are quite revealing. Surprisingly, when you think you've taken the last "after" photo of work performed the lens of the digital camera captures things you didn't see and didn't correct.

When the final "after" photo is taken and nothing jumps out at you--you've hit a home run with your effort.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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rkellerjr
Many Feathers

USA
1260 Posts

Posted - 18 Apr 2014 :  09:01:22 AM  Show Profile
That is what I did when I rebuilt my motor and I'll do the same when I pull the dash and restore that nest of challenges. Pictures are a must unless you can build these things blind folded.

Rich
1975 TA - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aR86YT69yeY
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 18 Apr 2014 :  09:59:55 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Rich--I've ordered a complete dash--I'm hopeful that it will become available to me and the hundreds of others whose dash is badly cracked or deformed.

I took this photo this morning. This is an "after" picture, maybe the 3rd one. Each time the camera revealed a place I missed with paint or wasn't cleaned well enough to pass muster.



Also, with the photos, sometimes the flash gives a false look. Natural light photos are more what the human eye sees and is a better representation of what is there.

Bill

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 18 Apr 2014 10:01:44 AM
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Jack_77GP
Tribal Scout

USA
28 Posts

Posted - 18 Apr 2014 :  2:35:12 PM  Show Profile
That control arm looks great. Last summer I refinished mine and installed new bushings. In a classic rookie move, I painted them before driving the new bushings in which resulted in having to re-sand and paint them again. I used rustoleum semi-gloss on mine as its the only brand available without driving an hour each way. Looking at yours, I wish I had taken the time to go get the good stuff. They look way better.

77 Grand Prix LJ, 400, T-tops.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 21 Apr 2014 :  10:57:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 21 April 2014

Back on the header removal.

Removing the driver's side (DS) header isn't as complicated or as messy as the PS where the oil filter housing and filter must be removed to provide clearance. No matter how careful, I always get oil on me, or worse, spill some on the ground. Knowing this, I've taken precautions with rags, and this time, a kitty litter pan to catch the oil. Good right. Yes it is. But...once the oil is caught in the pan, dispose of it immediately. Don't let it sit under the car because, you'll find Murphy's Law coming into play like I did this morning when I was greeted with oil on the garage floor. Can you believe it there was a small crack in the plastic pan large enough to let that slippery stuff through. "Clean-up in aisle 7." It never fails.

Removing the DS header following the oil clean-up went smoothly. With a stick car, you simply detach the spring and arm that drives the clutch. Then remove the two long bolts that hold the starter in place and carefully withdraw it. (Watch your face.) Once out, place the starter on a 8" tall wood box so you don't have to disconnect the electrical--that's what I did. Next, remove all the header bolts except the one in the flange keyhole slot. Loosen it enough to release the header and withdraw it from the car. Remember, the engine is already jacked up an inch or so for clearance.

Both headers are out. They will be boxed and shipped off to Jet-Hot.
=======
How long did this take? Excluding the oil spill--70 minutes.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 21 Apr 2014 10:58:40 AM
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bnorris_74
Crazy Horse

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 21 Apr 2014 :  3:25:24 PM  Show Profile
I run the Hedman 28150 1-3/4 tube headers and have not had to remove the starter or oil filter/adapter during any of the removals or installs. This is on a 74 Firebird, Auto tranny. I guess I'm lucky. I will say that it is now a PITA to remove the starter and oil filter. I switched to the smaller oil filter but still end up getting oil all over the headers during removal. I did have to notch one of the lower A frame brackets on the driver's side about a 1/4 inch to get the headers to bolt to the driver's side head.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 21 Apr 2014 :  4:10:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Brian--I suppose if I were to jack the engine higher I might be able to clear the housing on the PS but can't imagine getting by the starter on the DS. Clearance between the one tube and the starter body is maybe 1/4 of an inch.

Headers are off to Jet-Hot.

When they are ready to go back in I will take extra precautions in fitting them in. Don't want to scratch anything.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 22 Apr 2014 :  07:32:27 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
These photos were taken shortly after the radiator was removed from the car and prior to getting it to the radiator shop for repair.



Close up.



This radiator is a 3 row and with a 160 thermostat keeps the engine running belwo 200 F in the hot summer months. The stock 195 F thermostat was replaced many years ago because the engine ran too hot. The 160 was the solution.

With plans to re-install the AC system the radiator needs to be at it's best.

Note: the radiator is semi-gloss. This is exactly the way it came in the car in 79. The radiator shop, mistakenly, painted it gloss black. That paint is being removed from the tanks and will be painted semi-gloss. It will get a light coat over the brass. The fins can remain gloss as much of the radiator is not seen because of the AC condenser which sits in front of it and the fan shroud. The side tanks are exposed so they must look clean, sharp and be the right sheen of black.


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 01 May 2014 :  2:37:23 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 1 May 2014

My headers were sent out for re-coating to Jet-Hot. Today UPS delivered them back to me. Wow! The coating inside and out is gorgeous. I'm totally thrilled with the quick service and brilliant silver finish. Absolutely show car quality work. Two thumbs up and a pat on the back to JET-HOT! Wow!





"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 05 May 2014 :  7:48:05 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Photo of re-coated header back from Jet-Hot.



Beautiful!

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 05 May 2014 :  8:56:56 PM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
Man that is gorgeous!
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GerryC
Tribal Scout

USA
39 Posts

Posted - 05 May 2014 :  9:17:07 PM  Show Profile
Damn that's nice!!!!

68 Firebird 400
400, Quadrajet,DUI HEI,TH400 with Continental Conv.and 3.08 rear
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2014 :  10:56:47 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
On a different thread there's been a bit of a discussion about how Gas Monkey built two base Firebirds with a budget of $300k. [Fast n Loud]

Having such a budget is out of this world and unrealistic for 99.9% of us.

My "resto project" isn't a "frame off" effort; it doesn't need that; it would be overkill for the project and just as outlandish as that $300K budget of Gas Monkey.

So, my project is puny by contrast. It will also not be concours. But will be every bit as good as it was when the TA was 6 months old.

So, what is my anticipated budget? About $16,000.

The engine is not in need of refurbishing other than cosmetic things. My estimate of
money in the engine, as it sits is $6,000. Not included in the $16,000.

What is included:
Chassis parts such as shocks, radiator fix, clean up, paint supplies, fasteners etc--$1500
Header re-coating jet Hot $500
Booster re-coating $100
New AC system--$1,500 parts and labor
Body work and paint is between $7,000 and $9,000 (paint and labor)
A complete new interior is expected to be between $3,000-3,500, includes new dash, new front and rear standard upholstery, new plastic trim, headliner, Formula steering wheel, carpet and misc fasteners etc. This could be higher if a shop is engaged to do the upholstery.



"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 08 May 2014 11:00:08 AM
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2014 :  6:46:58 PM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
I know that it's a chunk of cash to plop down (i'm picking up the 327 for my truck in a few days and have to pay for it) so i know it hurts laying out 2k here and 1500 there, but it is so satisfying when you get done (or even done with major steps)

Keep at it bill! you'll get there slowly but surely. The key is to just get out and do it when you can, and if something is giving you trouble walk away for a bit. We have faith in you!
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Admin
Ye Olde Webmaster

844 Posts

Posted - 30 May 2014 :  09:31:34 AM  Show Profile
Today is 30 May 2014 and my project has sat for about 2 weeks now. My wife and I finally agreed to forego hiring a painting outfit to do the exterior of our home. That of course didn't solve the difference of opinion on what color to paint it. How many swatches can you look through? (That's a rhetorical question.)

So, I took the job on myself. We had only 2 days of "cool" weather where the humidity was not too high that allowed me to do some real work on the house. Prepping it for paint is more time consuming than painting it. Sound familiar? The difference with the house is that my wife actually helps out. She's no doormat. While she does suffer from "supervisor's instructor syndrome," advising me about this and that, I have "you missed a spot meticulous syndrome" that balances things out. Meanwhile, the paint is slowing going on the walls and the TA sits. Boxed parts, tools, everything in place just like I left it weeks ago. It's like a moment frozen in time.

This week has been a little different. Painting is delayed because the rainy season is moving in. We've had weeks of clear beautiful weather with deep blue skies. Now the clouds are forming off shore and the wind direction is bringing thundershowers inland.

With the rain delays, I have spent some time in the garage re-organizing so I can resume working on the TA when the house painting is completed.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

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bnorris_74
Crazy Horse

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 30 May 2014 :  5:00:01 PM  Show Profile
Two things. 1. Do not end up with enough house paint to do the T/A and 2. let her know that while the paint on the house looks great it won't do for the T/A(unless you use a roller )

Edited by - bnorris_74 on 30 May 2014 5:00:57 PM
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 01 Jun 2014 :  9:08:40 PM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
Bill, you mentioned fasteners giving you a hard time staying clean and not rusting or whatnot. I know totally stainless makes black stainless bolts (or regular stainless if you don't care about originality.) for lots of applications. If yours aren't metric, you could probably get away with a gto or lemans kit, or if metric, maybe they have a kit for you? Would be worth calling to check, black stainless would be very close and may stand up to the weather you have.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 02 Jun 2014 :  08:29:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
All engine bolts and nuts are SAE; fitting on the body are a mixed bag with U and J nuts and bolts.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Admin
Ye Olde Webmaster

844 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2014 :  10:43:11 AM  Show Profile
Update: 21 August 2014

My grand kids are back to school. The house has been repainted but for some trim (rain delays), the small home projects, except for one are completed, so it looks like I will soon (and I emphasize soon) be re-focusing on the Trans Am.

Resuming where I left off will take some doing. Old parts and new parts have been moved around in the garage during the past few months while doing other projects. The grand kids were here with me for days at a time when I could do nothing on the car despite the inclement weather (daily summer rains, super high humidity and scorching sun). During this time I have read a lot of children's books helping my 6-year old grand son with reading; and, pushing my grand daughter to finish her pre-fall middle school assignments. (She is stubborn.) Why they give assignment during the summer is problematic. Give the kids a break so they can enjoy the time off. That's what I did during the summer time--goofed off and played with my friends. Later, I worked with my Dad. There was plenty of time for school.

When things get going again, I will need to finish the radiator support, install the new support mounts and the radiator which has been repaired and partially refurbished by me.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 07 Oct 2014 :  12:01:48 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 6 October 2014

Resumed work on the TA. Working on the driver's side of the engine and engine bay. My focus was to try and solve burning away of paint on the head just above the headers. Purchased high heat product from Eastwood and after wiring brushing the surface area, applied this silver-gray coating to the head. Engine paint will be applied over this. This is an experiment. Tired of repainting to make things look neat and clean.

Removed one of the short gasoline return pipes that runs from the pump up and over the frame and runs to the tank. It was degreased and then further cleaned up with a brass wire brush. The 2-3" of exposed pipe (where the steel coils are not) will be treated with a product that in intended to keep them free from rust. It will look almost new. There are two pieces of 3/8" gasoline hose (original to the car) that I will also replace. These rubber hoses connect the pipe to the pump and to the long steel line that run to the tank.


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 11 Dec 2014 :  10:16:50 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Update: 11 Dec 2014

Getting geared up for Christmas. Another year has passed with very little being done on my TA restoration project. It's amazing how often other things get in the way of progress. When I get clear of things, get motivated to dive in again, with in a day or two, something else comes up that tears me away from it. I lose my concentration and have to gear up again, another day, or month later to resume something I was trying to do.

I had honestly believed that the car would be nearly done by now. Nope. It may take many more months to get there--if I can ever break away from other things that grabs me by the shoulders and says--gotta do this instead.

My wife and I just came back from a much needed vacation. It was one we had planned for many months earlier. While on vacation, many thoughts were on my TA sitting in the garage waiting for my attention. Now at age 66, I have to get going. Parts are scattered throughout my garage, properly labeled, and I've taken lots of photos, it still will take time to dig them out so things can be reassembled properly.

My radiator support is being refurbished as indicated in earlier posts. All of the corrosion and rusty areas around and near the battery have been treated with POR-15 and have been recoated with semi-flat paint. Hopefully, by the next Wednesday it will be 100% complete so it can be set aside for future installation.

I'm planning to work on the car every day for a few hours. The operative words are "every day." The meaningful unseen wordings is "must do it" everyday.

That's my plan. I need to stick to it, despite others pulling on me to do this or that.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Phil
The Great White Buffalo

USA
7215 Posts

Posted - 12 Dec 2014 :  10:14:38 AM  Show Profile
I'm probably the pot calling the kettle black here but I have been in the same boat with my projects. The only way I have been able to get anything done is to block out some time on a given day or weekend, shut myself off from the world, have a plan and go attack it. Everything else waits. Just like my Pontiac projects have to wait for other things. Has to be a two way street.

My other strategy is every time I go in the garage for any reason, I make a point of doing one small thing while I am out there. Sometimes it's as simple as grabbing a wrench and putting it away in its proper place, picking up a piece of trash, putting a handful of bolts back in the drawer, consolidating a few supplies or parts in the trunk which are awaiting install, etc. By the end of the week the place already looks better and I have less distraction when I want to work on more complicated things.

So strange that when I was a teenager and in my 20's, a new engine or trans was installed as soon as I got it home...couldn't even eat a meal first. Now it takes months or even years...

Bowties are for Pee-wee Herman. "Chevy": even the name sounds cheap, but not as cheap as your Pontiac will be with an LS transplant.

Edited by - Phil on 12 Dec 2014 10:17:21 AM
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 12 Dec 2014 :  11:19:21 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage
Phil--Today I went out to look for a few U clips. Some of mine have rusted and are pitted. Since I have them off and wire brushing them to re-paint and re-use, I thought maybe I can purchase a few and simply replace them. So, that was my goal, find some. I went to several auto store. They had everything but what I needed. What a surprise. It has been that way since I've owned the TA--never can find what is needed locally, if at all.

Not to be foiled. I took a look in my AUVECO fastener catalog and found the correct GM part. From there I did a web search and came up with a link (thecliplink.com) and found the ones I need. [5/16"-18 screw size, 5/8" center of hole to edge; 10830 , OEM # 1494253] There's 50 in a box, way more than I need, but I ordered them.

I also looked for body shims and found the exact ones. However, there are 100 to a box, and I only need a few because a few are rusty. What am I going to do with 97 of them? They are originally zinc coated but over the years that's gone south. The cost for 100 exceeds my desire to replace them. I may be able to find them sold in small quantity somewhere--not sure. "...and the beat goes on." --Sonny Bono

Bill

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 12 Dec 2014 :  11:32:53 AM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage
Napa is a great source for the clips and shims and fasteners, etc. I have never been to one that didn't have the rotating shelf with the different OEM fasteners on it. Have saved my butt when i realize on a friday afternoon that i'm missing something that will keep me from making progress all weekend if i don't find a certain small annoying part.
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