Author Topic: 1978 Trans Am restoration  (Read 16151 times)

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Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #30 on: July 14, 2014, 04:17:15 PM »
May want to run some diesel fuel in your oil for an hour and then change it. clean out those passage ways

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #31 on: July 14, 2014, 05:16:46 PM »
Already gave it a Bell-Add oil cleaner treatment. It is getting a few more:-)
The engine is coming out for a complete tear down and rebuild.
It's a definite keeper since it's a matching numbers car.
I like the idea of a 455, but I am not a racer. If my TA can pull a decent burnout like when you go pond-hopping, I am happy.
I plan on porting the heads, shave them a little and/or put in pistons with a smaller dish and combine it with a good RV cam to get the ideal dynamic compression ratio.
The engine already has a sound like one of the main bearings is gone, so there is not much expense to spare.
I am cleaning the mess as good as possible, changing the oil a few times and then driving in till the end of the summer (or the end of the engine)
Do I sound insane?
« Last Edit: July 14, 2014, 05:19:28 PM by marx3 »
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Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #32 on: July 20, 2014, 04:49:29 PM »
Exterior is 95% done. Need to modify the front flares, they are '79, and install the airdam.
Washed the car for the first time today to look for leaking seals. Only found two drops of water on the middle if the drivers side window. Should be and easy fix:-)




Getting started on adding all the decals. I wonder how long it is going to take to complete them
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Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2014, 11:38:28 AM »
there you go... every decal is put on except for the flares and the wheel openings.






Sorry for the bad picures ( iPhone ). The bird was a little tricky to get on. I had it put on 99.9% dead on in the middle of the hood, but with a few creases and airbubbles that need to be punctured and heated in the sun. Overall all stripes and letters are sitting very sharp and evenly all around the car.

Unfortuneately the engine gave up on the first testdrive today.
I had put some effort into removing all the crap I found in each valvecover and top of each head. Unfortunately it most have blocked off and oilchannel shortly, cause oilpressure was missing yesterday, but was back this morning. The engine now runs like someone pulled 3-4 plug wires :-) The cam must have been flattened out by now. Dang!
I friend has a comletely rebuild 403 sitting in his garage, that he is about to put into his Delta 88 instead of the 307 that was in there. I can borrow it indefinately. I am throwing it inot my car asap.

so to comclude: all that needs to be done by now is get the flares right, get the seats re-upholstered and get something done about the door panels.  ohh and make the car run by it self... :-)
Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2014, 09:56:59 PM »
Sorry to hear about your motor.  Great work on your stripes. Car is coming along nicely

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #35 on: July 28, 2014, 05:07:35 PM »
Thanks :-) I'm going to take some better closeup pictures of details!
Well, I knew the engine was in for it, I kept my fingers crossed it would live through the summer. It ran just fine, right up untill I found that mess in the lifter area and tryed to remove it. Some of all that stuff found its way to an oil channel and blocked it shortly. End of cam :-)
Now I am looking forward to rebuilding it completely. Never done everything alone before.
Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #36 on: September 19, 2014, 05:03:18 PM »
Well, I let the car sit for a while since the engine quit. I kind a lost the interest :-) So it just sat outside the shop for quite some time.


I turned my 78 deluxe cloth seats into 77 deluxe vinyl seats, though... easy job and it turned out good





Then one day recently I pulled myself together and got the engine out.
Found the engine bay was in nice clean condition, ince all the oli and gunk was washed off. The firewall still shows the original red primer



Tore the engine competely apart and found a (very) bad center main bearing, a bad connecting rod bearing and a (very) worn stock cam.

but other than this, everything is in such healty condition that I dont need to bore the block out. This means I can afford to rebuild the engine right away. yaay! A comlete re-ring kit, including a used crank machined 10/10 under, all new bearings and a Crower 60240 cam, plus some other minor parts, are on its way. In the meantime I am cleaning everything down for a re-paint


As soon as the heads have been milled to up compression a bit, ( my buddy is a machinist and will do it for free ) they are getting painted along with the block.
Still need to install the headliner, doorpanels, finish carpet installation, and get the correct flares mounted.
Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2014, 08:16:03 PM »
Looking awesome. Great Job!!!!!!!

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #38 on: September 21, 2014, 08:33:03 AM »
thanks! My wife is pregnant, due mid march, so I guess this winther will the last chance to finish it in a LONG time ( you wold know, jupiterbandit ;) )
I painted the frame etc flat black and want to touch the inner fenders and the flat area with the emissionsdecal ( dont know its name in english ). I am not so sure these parts should be flat black... I am thinking more of a semi-gloss. I am shooting for completely stock original appearance ( keeping the clone original, like you say, hehe ).

Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #39 on: September 21, 2014, 11:37:38 AM »
Your wife is pregnant? I don't get why women are so damnn sensitive. What we poke at them in fun, they take way too seriously.  Congratulations!
« Last Edit: September 21, 2014, 11:39:15 AM by JupiterBandit »

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #40 on: September 21, 2014, 02:56:16 PM »
4 months... she is being preeeeetty serious about it, seriously nauseous :-)  Thanks man... yours must be about 3 months now?
Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #41 on: September 21, 2014, 03:04:58 PM »
4 months... she is being preeeeetty serious about it, seriously nauseous :-)  Thanks man... yours must be about 3 months now?

He was born 2/25/2014 going on 7 months

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #42 on: September 22, 2014, 03:42:52 AM »
7 months!! holy smokes... come to think of it, I got started on the TA "about 3 months ago" :-)
Ignition & Induction.

"What are we gonna do, kidnap the Pope or something ?"

Offline marx3

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #43 on: October 02, 2014, 06:57:02 AM »
engine painted


it would be silly not to touch up the engine compartment while I had the room.


The frame etc got a spray of rust flat black stone chip coating and had the painters mix a semi-gloss black for the front piece and the inner fenders, also painted the servo reservoir, brackets, pulleys and airfilter housing while I was at it.
I want to hit the stock appearance!  ( yes, I know the whole deal is supposed to be semi gloss, but the frame etc will have to wait untill next year )
All the correct decals are on their way :-)
« Last Edit: October 02, 2014, 06:59:28 AM by marx3 »
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Offline JupiterBandit

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Re: 1978 Trans Am restoration
« Reply #44 on: October 02, 2014, 02:22:49 PM »
I'm impressed. Looks GREAT!