71' Cutlass S 455

Old February 3rd, 2012, 08:16 PM
  #1  
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71' Cutlass S 455 Frame on Restoration

Just starting a thread here, picking up off what I laid in the Newbie section.
https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...o-florida.html

Going to be restoring a 71' Cutlass S 455 \ TH 400 setup. (there is some unknown still about the transmission, seller was not so sure what it is, will
know more soon when I can crawl underneath. He says its a" Powerglide 400" him being a chevy guy. I think its probably a TH400 given its a 455 in the car.)

I got car very cheap, and restore had already been started well before I got it, but guy ran out of funds and motivation. Yep, one of those deals you see all the time out there.

Ive been looking and poking my head around for the right one to restore, one a little easier on the wallet because good chunk has been done, but still headache enough for someone who got burned out doing it, or no more funds. I also want a car that I could modify, one that you would be comfortable creating what you want, not one that was too stock you'd hate
to modify it. This one fit the bill exactly, previous guy dumped a lot of time and money into it doing all the initial stuff.

So I call this "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly". This one has all of it!
(wait till you see the current interior !!)

Will be posting allot of the pics once I resize them. Here are the first ones though. What it is, and what it will be. As I said in Newbie forum, going for a poor mans 442, without clone tag. 60% Cutlass S, 40% hot rod. Going to keep old school look with body and interior, new school suspension and other features newer technology offers.

Any help, tips, comments are very welcomed. Not to mention parts!
Bombs away.
Jim
PS (i photo shopped the drivers door color for my own motivations, because its a puke green currently, and I wanted to see the idea of what it would eventually look like)

Video of running motor before teardown -

MISC PROJECTS:

DOOR RUST - https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums/body-work/44781-weird-rust-71-cutlass-doors-thoughts.html

REPLACE MOTOR MOUNTS - https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...cutlass-s.html

NEW INTAKE \ CARB UPGRADE - https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...questions.html

NEW TIMING COVER \ Water pump thread - https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...step-step.html

DASH RESTORATION - https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums/cutlass/48544-71-cutlass-s-dash-pad-removal.html

Video of motor first start after work done to top end:
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 08:36 PM
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Looks like fun I'm doing a 71 too same style but keeping the 350. I doing the interior custom so that translates to I'm fabricating what I can myself and buy cheap. Keep posting pics and welcome to the site.
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 10:05 PM
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The Good, Bad, and the ugly

Things Ive collected so far for this project:
(Like I said in Newbie section, I got very small budget and have to be frugal)
-Front bumper parking lights
-442 4 spoke sport wheel (just got to have!)
-2 used proper 71' Cutlass S door panels in awesome shape but are white. Will need to be dyed.
-New door arm rest (existing arm base seems fine)
-Good set of 4 used tail light assembly inserts.
-One headlight housing to replace cracked up passenger side one.
Either already had or paid very little for all above.

ALL above needed because missing, damaged or looks way too crappy.

Things I need still to get her in proper driving cond - I'll call it stage one-get her safely on the road!

-Tires. Mix deal here. I might be able to use 2-3 of them temporarily.
Going with Radial T\A's 245x60x14
-Radiator top support. Not absolutely necessary, its a 4 core radiator in 2\3 core support. This kind of stuff bugs the crap out of me. I got to fix it!
-stone shield
-Front bumper put back on, core is straight, but very poor condition. I could throw it on there as is temporarily, but boy would it be FUGLY! Looking for local chrome plater. One guy near me has 2 month wait.

The Good-
455, TH400, 10 bolt rearend, body work 80% done, dont know much else yet.

Engine and tranny have only 200 mi on a 2009 rebuild. Shift kit done at that time. Looks like its got HEI at that time too.
Attach is what he did to the engine.
Looks like a standard rebuild, nothing crazy here. (But Im a novice and know little about specs, internal engine stuff)
Its been mostly sitting since the guy ran out of money.

Headers, brand new exhaust from headers back. Looks like 3 Inches out the back.

New Brakes, brake lines, cylinders, Master, top to bottom.

Looks like most of the body has been worked on extensively.
Guy that I bought it from took it off his co-workers hands as a loan,
and then original guy just couldnt buy it back. But original guy is a 30 yr body guy and did a lot of work on it. He fixed a little bit of metal, front lower qtrs behind wheels, got it all done and prepped and then tried to shoot the car himself. But he had little paint exp, and the paint wrinkled, and blem'd all over. But she has a great base to start from to re-shoot, already primed and sealed, etc.

New Carpet, headliner (not installed yet).

Frame, engine well, undercarriage has already all been done.

The Bad...and Ugly -
What it still needs for the body to get ready to paint - the bad:

--Possible both doors -- Doors have rust rot in the strangest area to me - right at the front top window seal area on fender side. They are missing a few inches of metal. I personally have never seen this before, but Im sure some of you have. I will post pics of it when I get a chance, but here are couple quick pics.
Can this be fixed at a decent cost, or is it better to go after better doors?
--Possible Trunk lid - may be usable, here are some more pics. Im tempted to just throw a more decent trunk lid on it, if I can find one.

Ugly- Front bumper is horrible, the back bumper stripped, sanded and Primed. He was going to do a Rallye 350 clone.
More Ugly - the seats...YIKES!

Will add more later.
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 10:28 PM
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In deciphering the engine rebuild kit paperwork that came with the car, it looks like the engine has following internals (remember, Im no expert in this area):

--Keith Black 030 Pistons - KB132-030
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/UEM-KB132-030/

--Clevite Cam, Main and Rod bearings
--Possibly Clevite or Hastings Rings (according to "616 030" part number)
--Mondello BB intake\ pan Gasket
--Melling HV oil pump
--SA gear Timing set

More as I figure out the P\N's on the paperwork

--More Engine specs I obtained.
Again, some of below techie #s are beyond me.

Top 025 Ring gap
sec 025
Piston to bore .002
deck 013
rods 0025 oil cl
mains 003.

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Old February 4th, 2012, 01:35 AM
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A powerglide 400? what is that? A cross between a 400 turbo-hydromatic and a powerglide?
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Old February 4th, 2012, 01:59 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by 1969w3155 View Post
A powerglide 400? what is that? A cross between a 400 turbo-hydromatic and a powerglide?
Its a typo. Should be "Powerglide\400", meaning either\or. Its being shipped to me next couple days.
The guy is an old chevy guy, and I asked him do you mean a TH400, and
he said Powerglide 400. So I think he's just confused. He was just holding the car for his friend till the friend pay him back which never happened.
Its most likely TH400.

But you never know...!


Page Breakdown of work Done:


Pg 1 -- Decoding #'s, First week inspections, etc
Pg 2 -- Top and front end Engine teardown, Motor mount issues, Brake tear down, control Arm teardown

Pg 3 -- MAWs start taking over, Rearend removal\ teardown\ rebuild, Under chasis work, more Engine tear down, Front end
body teardown, tranny tailshaft rebuild

Pg 4 -- Steering wheel shaft rebuild, In the frame oil pan gasket replaced, Edel Intake manifoild install, Edel carb install\setup
HEI Dizzy install, Top and Front end Engine buildup, Frame strip and Por15

Pg 5 -- More Frame paint, SS lines installed, Driveshaft restore, Tranny Por15, Body bushing replacement, Hooker hdr installation,
Brake booster installation, new gas tank \sender install

Pg 6 -- Front control arms\springs\ shocks install, Suspension reinstall, New brake install, Rearend resto, pumpkin breakdown,
Pg 7 -- More rearend restore, New sway bar and mounts install, Alt, - oil adptr - starter -- ss Lokar tranny\ motor oil dipsticks install
Steering wheel shaft rebuild

Pg 8 -- Ext Lights resto, Interior breakdown, rearend buildup and reinstall, Speedo restoration
Pg 9 -- Dash lighting\ Wiring, Installing Rearend\Suspension\brakes, More powder coated parts
Pg 10 -- Metal dash repaint, Driveshaft reinstall, more ext. lighting resto, rear disc brake install, interior powder coat parts installed,
Front rad core reinstalled, Headlight\mounts installed, new Alum rad\ rad top plate installed, new fan shroud setup, SS tranny lines installed, Tranny cooling lines\ AN fittings installed

Pg 11 -- HURST Shifter and linkage installed, Lot of interior resto work, tranny x-member reinstalled, ss ebrake installed, starter installed (again)

Pg 12 -- Interior roof painted, interior Dash wiring, Misc work, Muffler pipe work, Door skin removal, AT shifter and console mock up,
Aftermarket seat mock up, dash gauge Bezel ideas

Pg 13 -- Dash work, Emblem install on fenders, Powder coated 15" SSII rims mounted, Chrome Valve cvrs installed, Header gasket leak fix

Pg 14 -- Wilwood Alum front brake install, W-25 hood install, Aftermarket OAI install

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Old February 4th, 2012, 07:57 PM
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Looks like fun!
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Old February 9th, 2012, 10:10 PM
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Car will be here Fri eve. This w\e I will begin doing some deeper assessment and take tons of Hi Res photos. I originally was sent over 200 Hi res photos of the car to help make decision on purchasing. But although they were Hi res pics, and he was a trooper at helping answer all my questions, the pics weren't always so great-Lighting issues, out of focus, wrong angles, etc. So a real good exact assessment needs to be done.

ADDED- Here is example of good pics - (though engine pics not so hot)
http://www.use.com/2ae90c2f3996a8d4e81a?p=49#photo=48

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Old February 24th, 2012, 07:46 AM
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Day one - off the carrier

Well, this is the first day I will not be doing anything on the car. So I decided to update what has happened so far. I got the car 2 weeks ago today. Ive been inside her, under her, all over her for 2 weeks straight. Allot of stuff accomplished. Allot of assessing, fixing, analyzing, prepping, etc. Here are some shots of her coming off the carrier. She is indeed a mystery treasure with all sorts of surprises- some real good, some not so much!
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Old February 24th, 2012, 07:55 AM
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Here are some more pics of day one. I will post allot of pics first, then comment. Everyone loves pics!
(can someone also tell me how to add pics into the actual post itself so I can add comments under each pic?thx)





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Old February 24th, 2012, 08:44 AM
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wait.... what....
 
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I just use my Flikr account, and paste the picture link to the thread using the insert image tab. You can probably use photobucket for this as well.
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Old February 24th, 2012, 09:18 AM
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He was just holding the car for his friend till the friend pay him back which never happened.

This scares me. Before you put time and money into this, are you sure you have clear title. You don't want to have to give this back to someone after you've finished it, or at the very least have a hard time registering it.
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Old February 24th, 2012, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by frankr442 View Post
He was just holding the car for his friend till the friend pay him back which never happened.

This scares me. Before you put time and money into this, are you sure you have clear title. You don't want to have to give this back to someone after you've finished it, or at the very least have a hard time registering it.
Thx for concern.
Its clear. Its all good. I would never get into something like that!
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Old February 24th, 2012, 10:06 AM
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More Pics - Some of the first 2 weeks of work -
--Stripped entire interior. Cleaned and shined all interior vinyl pieces that came out of interior. Got lucky here, as bad as some of this stuff looked, and front panels shot, all the rear stuff came out awesome after serious elbow grease. Grime protecting the vinyl over the years! Front door panels are not usable for me. Can be fixed by very industrious type. Already have other original Cutlass S front panels in great shape.
WOW thats brand new carpet under there...
--Worked on Headlight issues, interior light issues. Fixed allot of it, still cant get courtesy lights to work nor Dash lighting for night driving. Will post new thread in correct section asking what to do next.
--Fixed Sagging springs, new rear shocks (below is before pics, will post after later)
--removed front bumper, front end, slowly get ready for paint.
--fixed fenders- installed wrong, tabs in front of front core instead of behind, various other things.
The original owner is a real good body guy, but gave car to his friend for a loan, and that guy didnt put front end back together correctly. Thx to CO I got the Assembly manual and redid the entire metal on front end to get it right.
-- started prep interior roof, more to do
--cleaned and polished tons of trim. Will have to buy some stuff that wasnt usable.
-- Washed seatbelts in dishwasher. Came out great.
--Cleaned carb, good for now, needs rebuilt later down the road.
--Worked on headers and collector leaks. New Aluminum collector gaskets, got 90% of the way there, but still slight leak. Header gasket on right side leaks too.
--dressed up engine and well.
--tons of other nick nacks along the way.





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Old February 24th, 2012, 10:09 AM
  #15  
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More pics





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Old February 24th, 2012, 10:23 AM
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More pics



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Old February 24th, 2012, 10:39 AM
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More Pics

Unfortunately, the shift indicator is broken and needs to be replaced. Common problem, easy to fix, but hard to find the part.
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Old February 24th, 2012, 12:13 PM
  #18  
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Date Codes

the Best I can make out :

VIN - 336871R152844
Engine - 396021 F (F is in Serif font so is a 2nd run series 70-74 block)
Heads - G heads, small A, Head stamp looks like 32R163698
Carb - Q jet 17058253 BBC (1978)
Trans - 72 OD 4438
Rearend- R2 B 159 - (bummer) This is Buick 2:56 correct? Shouldnt it be an "O" not a "B"? Anyways, Grandma gears.
Ive been reading about the weakness of Olds rear ends on 442.com, so maybe I need to do some reading about "B" rear ends.
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Old February 24th, 2012, 12:33 PM
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Rear interior panels and stuff came out nice. Other set came out even better.

Found the business card from July 87' of the last shop who reupholstered interior!
Always remember, "Jesus loves you!"
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Old February 24th, 2012, 02:12 PM
  #20  
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Date Codes

Im having all sorts of technical issues. Keeps asking me to relogin when posting.
Somethings posting twice, others disappeared.
I had long overview of what Ive found to date, Good, Bad and Ugly.
And its all gone. Not redoing that again today.
Will pickup again later. URGGGHHH!

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Old February 24th, 2012, 02:20 PM
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looks good , did you get the serial # stamped on your motor yet ? if its in the same place as mine , below the driver side manifold.
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Old February 24th, 2012, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by oldsguybry View Post
looks good , did you get the serial # stamped on your motor yet ? if its in the same place as mine , below the driver side manifold.
Thx,,,Head code is blocked by Alt bracket. Im going to replace another belt next week, may just take it all apart then to get to it.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 07:43 PM
  #23  
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After a whole night of wrenching, sanding, and cleaning, I got the Head code under the Alt bracket.

Engine - 396021 F (F is in Serif font so is a 2nd run series 70-74 block)
Heads - G heads, small A, Head code looks like 32R163698

Can anyone out there point me in right direction for Head code ID info?
Thx.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 07:59 PM
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Few more pics of latest engine detail...half way there.


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Old February 27th, 2012, 08:03 PM
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Just bought a 1971 Cutlass S myself! I need to dive into it myself but you sound a lot more knowledgable than I am! I bought it in Jan and its in Chicago but I wont go pick it up until end of March and drive it back to Baltimore, Md. (Im dying not having it!!) But it looks like its going to be ALOT of fun. Its my first attempt at a restoration so Im going to sound like a noob for a while. Luckily a lot has been done already... What does you guys think?
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Old February 28th, 2012, 11:18 AM
  #26  
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Looks like a great base to start from. Welcome to the money pit!
Everything is a c note here, c note there

I cant hold the jockstrap of many of these guys on this site.
Just search and read the threads. These guys know their stuff.

You got a great car to work on there. Anything I can help you with just holler. I am going over every inch of mine, and have just finished reading the entire ASM on 71' Cutllass line. By the time you start yours, I'll have allot of info to hopefully help ya a little bit. I reccomend you get the 71' ASM\CSM and tear into it. Be patient, and start selling the furniture!

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Old March 4th, 2012, 01:43 PM
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Engine \ Tran\ Rear end code thread:
https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...ing-codes.html

The last 7 days, Ive been chasing a terrible gremlin that has suddenly jumped into my wiring harness.

Suddenly I have no tail lights or turn signals, bizarre scenarios in testing them with engine on and off producing different results when
it shouldnt matter. 2 weeks ago exterior light was working 95% great. Now only Headlights\dimmers working right.

Im about to start a thread in electrical section, as Im hitting a wall on this.

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Old March 4th, 2012, 02:11 PM
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Hey Jim, Dave in Balto. here. Check all the grounds on those lights. Sometimes they can drive you crazy. Looks like your "getting your hands dirty". Keep us posted on progress and let me know what other parts you're looking for---I might have them.
Until next time..... Dave.
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Old March 5th, 2012, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave Siltman View Post
Hey Jim, Dave in Balto. here. Check all the grounds on those lights. Sometimes they can drive you crazy. Looks like your "getting your hands dirty". Keep us posted on progress and let me know what other parts you're looking for---I might have them.
Until next time..... Dave.
Hey Balto Dave!
I know your handle. Thx for commenting...yeah Im knee deep in doo doo!
I had to lay off the electrical for few days, it was driving me crazy.
Back to making good progress on easier things again. But ive also got that electrical demon still whizzing around in back of my mind. Jumped back into it today and found more problems in wiring under hood. I also found I got no voltage at the INST LMP fuse, and found more 1 stranded wire connections and corroded cnx's at junction box, other areas under the hood.
Will start fixing these tomorrow, and start chasing grounds again.

Anyone got any ideas at why no 12vdc at the INST LMP fuse? The dash Panel lights havent been working since I got her, though the map light and dome light work.
Courtesy lamps under dash at both kick front panels dont work either. All bulbs are good.

Last edited by JCMC64; March 5th, 2012 at 08:59 PM.
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Old March 5th, 2012, 10:35 PM
  #30  
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btw...I realize I left out a bit of info above...I have 12vdc at all the other fuses, except on INST LMP dash panel lights.
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Old March 12th, 2012, 03:05 AM
  #31  
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Put the Electrical issue on hold. It was making me insane.

Been fixing allot of minor things as my son visited me this past week.
--Replaced fan belts.
--Flushed entire cooling system, replaced the hoses.
--Replaced more frayed wiring (as I find them), found another one today.
(all wires making connection, but not solid as it should. None were grounding out either, had to peel back lots of tape to find them, but still got to fix each one as I find
it regardless of whether it relates to elec problem or not in the end)
--Had to retorque allot of bolts. Oil pan bolts were scary loose. Stopped a couple drops of oil a night leak by doing so.
--Had to work on bottom power steering bracket. P.O. put wrong size thread bolt on bottom P\S steering bracket at bottom of block.
Left it 3\4's sticking out.
That one bolt tucked nicely underneath block that you cant get to?!! Yeah that one. Luckily he didnt cross the threads.
But bracket was not lining up either. All brackets had to be loosen to get the holes lined up. Such a simple thing, that ends up taking just too long.
Also was missing the spacer there. Parts drawer fixed that (Thats why I dont throw any thing out wifey!! )

--Used vinegar trick on bumper mounts, and bump support brackets, other rough metal parts.
WOW! It really does work, took the corroded disgusting rusted supports down to bare metal in 2 days just sitting in giant plastic tote!

Now I have a rear diff front seal leak that has sprung up, getting worse daily. Teaspoon a night. Oh boy.
The car has been sitting since early 2010ish while body was being done.
Making her work again is bringing out the gremlins.

Other minor issues on the task board this week-
--Fix header leak on passenger side. Cant take that noise no more!
Think Im going to try Aluminum gaskets.
The pass side has two gaskets on there now, Im wondering if its this way by P.O. because the header flanges are obviously warped at head and collectors. I might need to replace headers due to this.
As stated above, I fixed Collectors with Aluminum gaskets already, but still not perfect but way way better.
--braided tranny cooler lines. Wait till you see the rig job lines on there now. Oh boy x2.

Thread for lower idler arm bolt rubbing lower rad hose fix:

https://classicoldsmobile.com/forums...-question.html

More pics, and video of engine to come later ...chk out the pics of the vinegar treatment, before and after shots. These supports were terrible.
Vinegar stripped everything to bare metal. Really amazing.
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Last edited by JCMC64; March 20th, 2012 at 08:09 AM.
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Old March 20th, 2012, 05:59 AM
  #32  
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Well more fun along the way...

I am working on all the crappy rubber hoses in engine bay, and also deciding on new radiator or not and which manufacture to go to...took off rad support play and discovered current Harrison 4 row core one needs top plate of core rewelded, and then its still 40yrs old. Just might bite the bullet on a new Alum radiator, and then I will put all new hoses in entire engine bay. Then I also got to run the new tran cooler lines due to the fact that the current ones are total rig job to avoid headers. Prev Owner wasnt such a stickler on finishing details after he rebuilt this one 200 miles ago. So I am tidying up allot of his shortcuts and messes. He put all the old crappy hoses back on everywhere in engine bay after the rebuild.
So they are all stripped off now and Im in process of replacing all rubber in the engine bay.

After all this (few weeks or so) I can start chasing Electrical issues again. Just got to get the Engine\Tran right.

Also will start sanding doors and trunk lid when there is down time waiting for parts, etc.



Crap!


Yuck...
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Old March 24th, 2012, 07:57 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by JCMC64 View Post
Here are some more pics of day one. I will post allot of pics first, then comment. Everyone loves pics!
(can someone also tell me how to add pics into the actual post itself so I can add comments under each pic?thx)
I use Tinypic. Just click on the [IMG] code and it'll post here like this.....



Not my car, by the way. Just something I found on the internet as a reference point for mine.
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Old March 24th, 2012, 09:14 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by JCMC64 View Post
Here are some more pics of day one. I will post allot of pics first, then comment. Everyone loves pics!
(can someone also tell me how to add pics into the actual post itself so I can add comments under each pic?thx)
Actually it's really easy. You insert the images using the 'manage attachments' tab. Once they're uploaded, you can open them, copy them and paste the full size image into your thread. (remember only 5 per post - unless you host the images on a different server. But if you do that, anything you do to that image on your host server will break the link to this thread)

So I copied one of your pics from permalink 10. It will show a full size image. (Insert caption - like " Here's me working my **** off, see how happy I am in spite of no A/C?"


You keep on doing this. OH< > 1 important thing, once you paste the image, hit the 'enter' key again or your images will post left to right instead of up/down. Once you get the hang of it, no prob.
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Old March 25th, 2012, 12:38 AM
  #35  
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I should enlarge my photos more often , but I just figure you can click on the thumbnail photo a couple of times to enlarge it .
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Old March 25th, 2012, 12:24 PM
  #36  
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Hey guys. Tyring to experiment here--
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Old March 25th, 2012, 12:31 PM
  #37  
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GOT IT!!! THX.

Last edited by JCMC64; March 25th, 2012 at 03:08 PM.
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Old March 25th, 2012, 12:41 PM
  #38  
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72' Olds 455 Rochester Quad codes
7042251
7042252

What are some prices I should expect for a quality rebuild of a Q-Jet out there?

Last edited by JCMC64; March 25th, 2012 at 12:44 PM.
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Old March 26th, 2012, 09:55 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by JCMC64 View Post
72' Olds 455 Rochester Quad codes
7042251
7042252

What are some prices I should expect for a quality rebuild of a Q-Jet out there?
Somewhere around $300 - $400.
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Old April 4th, 2012, 03:28 AM
  #40  
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Current Carb - Q jet 17058253 BBC (1978)

I got a nice 72' 750 cfm 442 q-jet code 7042251 RE
Will this be good carb to match above build along with Edel performer/torker/air gap intake? Im thinking with the 030 KB pistons and decent cam in it, etc. the rpm range can handle upto an air gap.
Thoughts?

Last edited by JCMC64; September 20th, 2012 at 06:59 PM.
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