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  • Parts Needed:

    Complete 350 MEFI setup
    My Build Thread:
    '71 K5 Build for the Wife

    #31
    Glad to see you making some progress.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by Sockalaminski
      Glad to see you making some progress.
      It’s been slow. Doing a little here and a little there. I’m trying not to break the bank but I need to keep moving. I’ve decided to not jump around on this one. Start on one thing and not tear it apart until I have everything to go back together. My goal is to upgrade while I can still drive it. Until engine time of course but I won’t pull engine until I have new one ready to go under it and that includes clutch and trans parts. The engine swap will include a lot of engine bay cleaning and painting.


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      • #33
        Installed the torque arm. Looks like it’s gonna be my lowest spot on the car. Gonna have to be careful not to catch it on our great roads here.



        Crappy picture but you can see how they stuff everything up in the tunnel.



        This is the tunnel mount with driveshaft loop. I would have really liked to keep a long torque arm, the short one changes the car’s roll center. But I wanted strong so this one met that criteria.



        Lower control arm mounted. These and the panhard bar are adjustable so I can push the axle back a little if I have some rubbing issues when it launches.



        These are my weld in subframe connectors. I’m not installing these just yet. I need to get the bottom of car wire wheeled and coated first. Also I’m gonna modify these a little too. That’s why these aren’t chrome moly, they’re mild steel and I couldn’t get them raw, only powder coated.




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        • #34
          When it came to springs and shocks I was at a loss. Everything out there was to lower the car and I don’t wanna do that. I’m ok with 3/4-1’’ but not 1-1/2’’ like most springs are. I talked to a local guy thru YouTube about his daily driven 1000hp WS6 and he said he used Strano springs that are 1-1/2’’ drop and Bilstein adjustable shocks and said they were good but his buddy has stock springs and Koni shocks and he said that ride nice too. I looked at coilovers and came real close to pulling the trigger on them. They were $780 for both but I was quickly talked out of them. Another guy that runs autocross with his Firebird said I do not want QA1 coilovers, I need a gas charged shock and he suggested stock springs and in his words “Bilsteins are great but Koni yellow is the way to go on these F-bodies”. A lot of searching seemed to point that same way so I did it. I wasn’t gonna use the original springs so I grabbed some Moog factory replacements from a Firehawk.



          I went back and forth on the shocks. Ended up getting the Koni Sport on car adjustables. Pricey bastards but all reviews were great. I’ll report back.






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          • #35
            Pulled springs and shocks.



            I decided in order to get the car lowered 3/4’’ I would not reuse the top rubber isolators on the springs. I can’t have metal to metal sitting against the bottom of the vehicle so I cut 2 pieces of 1/2’’ heater hose 18’’ long.



            I sprayed WD40 in the hose and on the top coil of the spring and pushed on the hose. It actually went fairly easy.



            Comparing them to the factory springs you can see how much taller the new ones are.



            Even with the isolator the new replacement springs are 1’’ taller. I know they will settle in but I’m wondering if I’ll settle down to stock height. I should have measured from ground to top of wheel well opening before I started. I will when it’s on it’s own weight again just to see how much it settles later.







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            • #36
              Got springs in. You have no idea how much it’s killing me from not cleaning off the rear axle and painting it. I’m not Greggo OCD but I go to sleep thinking about this axle and how rusty it looks. But if I do it, I gotta do it right and I’d have to take the axle out. At that point I’d need brake lines on axle and rubber hose from axle. The line on car doesn’t look like it’ll come apart so that will have to be repaired or replaced. Probably just get some stainless line and bend it myself all the way up to master. If I did rear I’d have to do front, there’s no reason bleeding it all for the second time (first was when I rebuilt calipers) and not completing it. But I have plans for front brakes so it’ll need to be opened again later. See how this starts snowballing? I wanna drive it while I upgrade so I can’t get into the rear axle yet. Just don’t fucking look at it if you have a problem with it. Sorry turrets kicked in.



              Popped in the top of the shock, tightened it down and put on adjuster.



              Bolted up the bottom.



              The carpet was perforated around the top of the shocks. Wish I would have seen this before I pulled all the carpet back. I ended up cutting the openings so I can adjust the dampeners.



              Doesn’t look bad. Can barely see them. You probably wouldn’t if you didn’t know to.

              Comment


              • #37
                Before I set my pinion angle I need to replace this trans mount.





                Ok, this thing is off, I can’t not paint this. I’m either gonna make a tubular crossmember to replace this one or I’m gonna buy one. But for now......





                This is how bad this was. I knew I was hearing something when I would take off from a dead stop and run it out a little more than usual and go to shift and as soon as I would disengage the clutch I would hear and sometimes feel it thump.






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                • Iggy
                  Iggy commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Looks like you are going to have some fun with this car!
              • My Build Thread:
                GobblerK5's '91 Build

                #38
                Paint looks good...nice krylon rattle can job!

                Mount looks a bit spongy...

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                Custom Signature Under Construction...

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                • #39
                  I got this dude back in. Then I put car back on the ground and moved it over into my second bay because I have some painting to do and I don’t want to have car blocked in. I’m so close to the first test drive with the new rear suspension.



                  Put the rear back up on stands with the stands under the axle so it’s on it’s own weight. I need to set the pinion angle. From what I found the pinion angle needs to be 2* less than driveline angle. This accounts for pinion tip up on acceleration. When using factory rubber bushings you can be 3* less, poly bushings puts you 1.5-2* but since I’m using a bad ass torque arm with these Del-sphere rod ends I can be 0-1* because the pinion shouldn’t be able to rotate much under load.

                  To get my driveline angle I put the angle finder right on the harmonic balancer and wouldn’t you know it, it’s right at 0*. That just seemed odd to me that I have the rear jacked up and the driveline is perfect level? I used my digital angle finder and got the same measurement. So I went to the rear and set angle finder right on the torque arm mount and adjusted the angle to -1* just so I don’t have any driveline vibrations running down the road. That’s when I noticed it.

                  How did I not see this before? Probably because the suspension was hanging.



                  The top of the torque arm is so close to the body. It even hit when I let the car down. I know it’s gonna rip a hole in the tunnel just from driving it.



                  I can’t get up there with my air hammer and flat punch to massage the tunnel so I’m gonna try using a pry bar to help clearance.

                  I didn’t try that yet because I got my new sway bar and I’m having another issue that I’ll share when I have another couple minutes to report.


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                  Last edited by Snowbound; 04-08-2018, 02:50 AM.

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                  • #40
                    Jess and I always take a long weekend in February or early March and head 1.5 hrs west of us to a state park called Starved Rock. It’s right on the river and there’s a bunch of hiking trails and little towns around the area that we like to go to. It’s our little break from the kids where we rent a little cabin for 3 nights and just relax, 1 hr full body deep tissue massages included. I know I probably share to much with you guys but I had to include that to tell the story.

                    A few days before we leave for anywhere I like to scour Craigslist for goodies. This time was no different. I came across a ram air hood for the car that the guy was asking $400 for. I called and asked what brand it was and if it was a bolt on or one that needed to be pinned on. He didn’t know the brand but it was definitely a bolt on, factory he said. He bought a truck load of hoods and this was one of them. So I set up a time to meet him. I looked online and if it’s the hood that he says it is, I can’t find them for any less than $900.

                    Thursday, the day we are leaving I get home and she’s already got her car loaded with the luggage and all I needed was to throw the cooler in and shower before heading out. As I’m taking everything out of her car and putting it into my truck she’s like, what are you doing? I thought you said we were taking mine? Yeah, well, I figured we’d just take mine and leave yours in the garage, as I’m throwing moving blankets and cardboard into the bed of my truck. Hehe.

                    So on Saturday after I let her pick the place she wanted to eat at, Hank’s Farm, $185 I might add, I fill her in on the good news. We are stopping to look at something for the Firebird. The guy wasn’t bullshitting, he literally had hoods lined up from the back of his garage to the front and said he already sold more than half. Of course being the guy I am, I bullshitted with the guy for about 45 minutes about everything and anything, I walked away with my brand new fiberglass ram air hood for $280. Score!! And of course she had to make a video of it.

                    https://youtu.be/5jg8RApbz24

                    No chips, gouges or scraps. Just some light scratches and normal imperfections from the molding process.



                    So I had to get to sanding to get the gel coat off to see how much work was gonna be involved.



                    Needed some filling but not much.





                    After another round of blocking.








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                    • #41
                      So here’s where I started setting up my makeshift paint booth so I can at least get the hood in primer/sealer.





                      And that’s when I realized I’m almost ready to take the car out for a test run so I took the sheeting down and moved the car over so it wasn’t blocked in by the booth. I can’t pull straight out of the 3rd bay because I have this hunk of metal outside the door, maybe you guys have heard of it, it’s called a K5 or something like that.

                      I also decided I didn’t want to just hang the plastic sheeting off the ceiling using squeeze clamps because I plan on putting a fan in to pull the air out thru a filter to keep the overspray to a minimum. Last time I did that it pulled the sheeting in and it touched my truck cap which caused me more work. I went to Menards and grabbed 240’ of 3/4’’ PVC pipe, 80 tees and 10 90s. I made a structure that was 12’ x 10’ x 8’ tall but realized that was a little too big so I scaled it down to 10’ x 8’ x 7’ tall. I need to paint a few other parts as well so I’m killing about 4 birds with one stone. I have my primer/sealer and flex additive but still need some paint and clear which I’ll get in the next week or so. This weather can’t decide what it wants to do here so I’m not gonna rush it. I have other shit to do now anyway.


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                      • #42
                        Now that the pinion angle is set and I need to clearance the tunnel, the weather is shit still anyway I decided to remove the crash pad and make my own rear bumper support. I removed the tail lights and bumper cover.



                        I discovered some of this Midwest weight reduction. Man, I just opened a can of worms.





                        First I started the initial attack by running it down with a wire wheel on an angle grinder.







                        Then I slapped on some rust convertor.






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                        • #43
                          It’s as bad as I thought it was gonna be. Time to get more aggressive with it. Hit it with a scotch brite pad with a 90* die grinder to expose the spot welds. Then started drilling.



                          Peeled off the top layer only to expose the weight reduction in the second layer.



                          More spot weld drilling.



                          Cut out that bad section.



                          Cleaned up what was behind that piece of crap.



                          Finally, some good metal to weld to. Cut my piece and test fit.



                          And I’m out of pictures for now. I have more panels cut and ready to go in but more work needed. I’ll get back at it this week.

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