Author Topic: '75 Trans Am (77/79 clone) project, new pics added.  (Read 13640 times)

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Offline Nathan_DK

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'75 Trans Am (77/79 clone) project, new pics added.
« on: August 28, 2010, 05:04:22 PM »
Hi, fellow T/A fans!

I have been following all your great projects for the last couple of years, and thought it was time to contribute with a little something myself.

My name is Jesper, I live in Denmark, and a couple of years ago, i bought a non-running, tired looking 75 Trans Am. The paint was cracked all the way to the metal, but fortunately only very few rust spots. The floors were almost perfect, only a couple of tiny holes under the rear seat and in both sides footwells. Someone had enlarged the speaker holes with an axe, and removed the wall behind the rear seat. Why? I have no idea! Got a nice parcel shelf from a donor car. I sanded the body down, and had the edges sandblasted. Then it was sprayed with epoxy primer, a lot of black and clearcoat. Unfortunately, the front fenders, hood, trunk lid and doors has to be repainted due to thousands of little dots. Very annoying! The 400 engine was filled with coke from bad oil and/or overheating. I chose to ditch the 400, and ordered a machined '72 455 block with SpeedPro pistons from ncperformanceinc.com. Very nice block, zero decked, bored .030 over, honed and with all new bearings. Stock crank and rods. I got a set of 6X8 heads, which I milled .030" for about 9.4:1 CR. I ported the heads, following Jim Hand's directions from his book "how to build max performance Pontiac V8's", and had a local machine shop cut three-angle valve seats. I have never done this much work to any engine before, so I'm very excited to see how it goes. More on the engine later!

Anyway, at some point the car was converted to a '79 tail light/bumper setup and Fisher T-tops. I am converting the nose and hood to '78, since it has always been my favourite.

OK, now for the pics! (I hope this works)




The 400 engine sounded horrible. Lots of sticky gunk inside!



Interior removed

I have no idea what went through the previous owner's head, when he did these modifications!

Body sanded down, edges sandblasted.



With fresh paint!

Floors cleaned...

Homecooked method of safely installing front springs.

Cleaning and painting the rear.



Doors, front subframe, suspension and steering installed. New American Racing Vector SE wheels. Had to use 1" wheel spacers, to convert to the 5x4.50" bolt pattern.



Test fitting the hood and nose!



Sound deadening and B&M Megashifter installed.

Brand new molded carpet, flawless center console. I had to change the armrest/lid though.

New Summit stock style calipers, SSB slotted rotors with the wheel spacers fitted.

Fixing up the front seat rails.

Firewall sound deadening.

Fresh machined 455 block from nc performance inc!



Home ported 6x8 heads wit three angle valve seats

Stainless steel valves

Starting to look like a car!











New oil dipstick with stainless steel tube and bracket from Ames. Perfect fit!

The 455's new home! Yeah, I know. It's a Chevy transmission. BOP transmissions are hard to come by in this country! Got an adaptor plate.

Home made stainless steel pushrod cover. Test fitting of headers.



« Last Edit: February 05, 2011, 06:22:20 PM by Nathan_DK »
'75 T/A 455 T-tops ('77/'79 clone)
'90 Audi 200 turbo quattro 20V

Offline CT Bird Fan

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2010, 06:17:45 PM »
You do excellent work, that looks great!! I really like those rims too!

Thank you for sharing, and welcome to the site!! 8)
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Offline SoonerTA

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2010, 06:50:18 PM »
Wow!  You have done a great job.  Keep up the great work and thanks for sharing all the great pictures.

Offline Grand73Am

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2010, 08:44:33 PM »
I like what you're doing...looks great.
I was curious about a couple of things. How did you know it's not a 79-81 body shell? Was there evidence of a tail panel change? And were there places where the Fisher roof was welded on, like on the windshield posts and the rear roof seams? It just seems odd that somebody would take a 75 and make both of those big changes to the body. I also noticed you put 78 or older rear spoiler ends on it. It's hard to tell in the pics, but did it have 79-81 rear spoiler ends on it to start with?
In any case, I like it  :) . Nice engine too! Thanks for the pics.
Steve F.

Offline rkellerjr

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2010, 10:54:23 PM »
Welcome to 78ta, great looking project and great progress!  Good to see another '75 being brought back to life, even though you've changed the front clip!  >:( ;) ;D
Rich

Offline oreobadr

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2010, 11:35:12 PM »
Looks awesome, did you do the exterior paint by yourself or did you bring it to a shop
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Offline HOMER

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2010, 10:07:21 AM »
that was one very solid car looks great
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Offline Nathan_DK

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2010, 11:38:15 AM »
Thanks for the comments! The roof has definately been swapped, the welds doesn't look like something that came from the Fisher Body factory. Some welding has also been done to the tail panel. As you see in one of the first pics, it had the '79 spoiler ends, but they were not fitting very well, so someone had bolted the lower front corners to the rear quarter. I prefer  the older, more rounded spoiler ends, so I got a pair of those. The paintjob was done by a professional, around 5000 $ US. He doesn't answer the phone, after I told him that the paint was starting to develop tiny dots all over! I have to take the car to another paint shop, but my main priority right now, is to have it running and ready for the spring!

I will keep posting new pics, but progress is slow. The parts are expensive, just about double the price that you guys in the U.S pay, when all shipping, tax and custom fees are paid.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2010, 12:22:44 PM by Nathan_DK »
'75 T/A 455 T-tops ('77/'79 clone)
'90 Audi 200 turbo quattro 20V

Offline HOMER

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2010, 01:49:20 PM »
i also see 80-81 tail lights and rear bumper?
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Offline Grand73Am

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2010, 02:57:57 PM »
I'm sorry to hear about the paint problems. The tiny dots could be a few things.
The air supply could have been contaminated with oil. That can happen if the compressor is old and worn and oil is getting inside the tank gets mixed with the compressed air. Then, he should have had some water and oil separator filters in his lines to catch the contamination. So he could have had dirty air, and/or insufficient filters.
Or the surface of the car was contaminated with silicone. If he was working in a shop where someone had used some silicone on something else, the silicone floats in the air and settles on the car's surface. Then if the car isn't cleaned thoroughly before paint, you get little fisheyes all over it.
Or, if the paint was applied without enough "flash" time between coats, it can cause "solvent pop". When you spray one coat, you have to wait about 15-20 minutes for the solvents to evaporate, or "flash", out of the paint before applying the next coat. If you spray the next coat on too soon after the first coat, the solvent is trapped, but then forces it's way up through the next coat, creating little dots all over.
Unfortunately, in all those cases, the paint has to be completely removed, because if you try to paint over those problems, the problems will show up in the new paint. They may not show as much, but some of it will.
Steve F.

Offline ZachAttack77TA

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2010, 10:53:58 PM »
Holy cow! That is some fantastic work! I wish I had that much attention to detail. Great work on your T/A!

And please tell me you're keeping those wheels on it. They look perfect for the car.
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1995 Trans Am
1977 Trans Am

Offline T/A Kid

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2010, 11:01:34 PM »
Very nice work you're doing a great job, maybe you can introduce us the the other T/A in the background  later on ;) I have to admit I really like that ram air hood on the car in the first shot I may have to look around for one on another project.
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Offline rad400

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2010, 08:50:10 AM »
What are the specs of the 455? I would love to be able to port heads. Great looking car too.
Conrad
79 Trans am 400 t400 3500 stall #12 heads holley 750 vac carb. Torker II intake 3:73:1 gears 12 bolt rear.

Offline Nathan_DK

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2010, 03:46:02 PM »
i also see 80-81 tail lights and rear bumper?

Yes, as I said, it has been converted to '79 tail lights and bumper by a previous owner. I have a set of the correct tail lights, but I haven't been able to find a bumper in decent shape, so for now, I'll stick with the '79 look.
'75 T/A 455 T-tops ('77/'79 clone)
'90 Audi 200 turbo quattro 20V

Offline Nathan_DK

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Re: '75 Trans Am project LOTS of pics!!!
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2010, 03:56:50 PM »
I'm sorry to hear about the paint problems. The tiny dots could be a few things.
The air supply could have been contaminated with oil. That can happen if the compressor is old and worn and oil is getting inside the tank gets mixed with the compressed air. Then, he should have had some water and oil separator filters in his lines to catch the contamination. So he could have had dirty air, and/or insufficient filters.
Or the surface of the car was contaminated with silicone. If he was working in a shop where someone had used some silicone on something else, the silicone floats in the air and settles on the car's surface. Then if the car isn't cleaned thoroughly before paint, you get little fisheyes all over it.
Or, if the paint was applied without enough "flash" time between coats, it can cause "solvent pop". When you spray one coat, you have to wait about 15-20 minutes for the solvents to evaporate, or "flash", out of the paint before applying the next coat. If you spray the next coat on too soon after the first coat, the solvent is trapped, but then forces it's way up through the next coat, creating little dots all over.
Unfortunately, in all those cases, the paint has to be completely removed, because if you try to paint over those problems, the problems will show up in the new paint. They may not show as much, but some of it will.

I have seen some other cars he has painted, and they were very nice. Obviously, it's just my usual bad luck. I suspect that the dots are only in the clearcoat, as the parts that were not clearcoated, don't have any dots. I'll take it to a paintshop I trust, when the car is running, and i no longer have to spend all my money on parts :)
'75 T/A 455 T-tops ('77/'79 clone)
'90 Audi 200 turbo quattro 20V