watching a car you've worked on for ten years roll out of the paint booth.
Since AACF was my first foray into the net as far as f-bodies go ( a loooong
time ago) I decided to let all of you get the first peek at the T/A. In the
shot below, I showed up early and they weren't even done cleaning up the
buffing compound. I'm the guy who looks like he's digging at his butt but to
tell the truth, I don't even remember what I was doing other than looking at
all that work coming close to the end. An E head 462 with a killer BC/CC
paint job overwhelmed me a bit today.
To all of you who helped over the years, thank you. To all of the locals who
called my car "That Thing" (as in that thing that will never roll again),
the car in the driveway tomorrow is the one that left the tracks in front of
your shops today. ;^)
: watching a car you've worked on for ten years roll out of the paint booth.
: Since AACF was my first foray into the net as far as f-bodies go ( a
: time ago) I decided to let all of you get the first peek at the T/A. In
: shot below, I showed up early and they weren't even done cleaning up the
: buffing compound. I'm the guy who looks like he's digging at his butt but
: tell the truth, I don't even remember what I was doing other than looking
: all that work coming close to the end. An E head 462 with a killer BC/CC
: paint job overwhelmed me a bit today.
: To all of you who helped over the years, thank you. To all of the locals
: called my car "That Thing" (as in that thing that will never roll again),
: the car in the driveway tomorrow is the one that left the tracks in front
: your shops today. ;^)
I'm jealous as hell. Now .... go grab the Desert Eagle .50 and be
prepared to furiously defend it. (you know...uhm...from...uh...other
'01 Formula - MTI Air Box Lid, K&N Filter, Hurst-6,
SLP Cold Air Induction & Smooth Intake Bellow
Corsa Catback w/Premium Tips
'83 V45 Magna
The car is an early 76 455 4 speed model, built around October I think. The
goal of the project was to build a 3500 lb car that could compete with the
2nd gen Camaros running 383s and 406s. The T/A weighed 4025 lbs with me and
an half a tank of gas so it had to go on a diet. The heads, intake, water
pump, etc. are all aluminum which helped some. The 76 nose is extremely
heavy so it had to go but there aren't any fiberglass 76 noses available and
I already have one car with a glass nose and it chips pretty easy. I found a
complete 70 front end and fitted it to the car. The rear bumper is the stock
heavy one. I replaced the hood with a fiberglass shaker hood and the front
end has raised about 2 inches. The front springs are Hotchkiss 2 inch drops
so the front as almost at the original height. It's definitely not a stocker
anymore, but it hasn't been hacked up. It could go back to the original form
without too much trouble. The A/C is functional; I wasn't going to loose
that comfort to save weight. ;^)
So I guessed the wrong end. Right back bumper, wrong front bumper.
I love the look of the 70-73 nose. (even though I had a 75 and have
Man, those cars are porkers. I'm not sure how I'm going to get my
80 down on weight - throwing out 200 pounds of moldy sound deadening was
How about the back window? How'd you switch from wraparound glass back
to the other style? That must have been a LOT of work - and why I
it was originally a 73...
Still has the wrap around glass but I was thinking it would be really fun to
whack the quarters and install a 70-73 rear end, chrome bumper and all, that
would really mess people up. ;^)
I've heard that the wrap glass was planned for 70 but GM had problems making
the rear window so they went with a flat back glass.
Got to get a few test runs in the car, no traction in 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th
gear on the 295 street tires. I really want to find some stickies before
It's been raining nonstop since the car went into the shop, makes pictures a
bit tough. ;^)
The flares are mounted in the factory manner and not glassed in. The clear
coat is starting to haze up so it looks like it's time for the second buff.
I fixed a buddy's buffer so he's going to take care of it for me.
When we get some good weather I'll post more pictures. I let a guy drive the
car today who has a low 12s on the motor/low 11s on the naaws 71 RS. He's
helped a lot over the past two years so he got the maiden voyage (well, I
felt I was too buzzed to drive had a bit to do with it). It was so cool to
see and hear the car go down the road and back. The car is ultra quiet but
he said it's going to be a tough race for him when we go to the track.
As long as you don't chop up a #s matching SE car to do your conversion, it's
OK in my book. I hate to see #s matching rare cars get "restified". LOL.
Beyond that, great job on the car. Keep the questions coming, I'll try to lend
a hand where I can....
Next time you're in Barnes and Noble, browse through "The History of the
Firebird" by Marc Cranswick there.
Tell me if you recognize the car and names on Page 81 and 87. LOL.
Good luck with your Bird...
Joe--ASE Certified Parts Specialist & 10th Ann.Club Tech Director
'80 Carousel Red Turbo T/A, 26k orig.
'79 "Y89" 400/4 speed 10th Ann. T/A, 57k orig
'84 Olds 88 Royale Bgm 2 dr, 307 "Rocket" (lol), 141k and still going....
'80 T/A project car...
The 76 is chopped up Joe, I could put the body back to original in a weeked
if I had to. The driveline would be a different matter. ;^)
I'm going to try to get a copy this week.
Thanks Joe, you've been a big help. Someone was asking about the vendor I
bought the cutouts from. Here's the link:
I had a problem blowing the power fuse when I installed the cutouts. I
called the company and they walked me through a troubleshooting procedure on
the phone and got it fixed in 10 minutes, great support. They also make some
cool stuff for 4th gens as far as headers, Y-pipes and cutouts.
Here's a couple of shots from today. The sun was getting low so the quality
isn't the best but they look okay. I didn't have time to get the car up in
the air so the cutout pics aren't the best.
Still playing with the carb jetting. I fixed a couple of problems and tried
82/86 jets. Killer acceleration on the primaries but a bit of a bog on the
secondaries. I dropped the primaries 2 sizes and got a good run on the car
today. When the engine is cold I'll see what the plugs say.
On a sad note, the left rear tire ejected something into the quarter panel
so I have my first scratch in the paint. shouldn't be too hard to fix but
I'm going to buy some stainless steel mud flaps to prevent that from
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