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SilverFleet UltraDork
6/8/15 3:42 p.m.

In reply to Dusterbd13:

That was the 1st place I checked after the sticker shock of the "toe board included" pans. They only carry the regular ones. I'll likely get them from them if I go that route.

I just checked, and it's about $140 shipped for the small sections of front floor. Full length pans are double that.

NOHOME UltraDork
6/9/15 11:02 a.m.
SilverFleet wrote: In reply to Harvey: Regular front floor pans without the toe boards run around $130-140 + shipping, but I should get the ones with the toe boards. Those run about $160 + 130 to ship them! That is just ridiculous.

I had to chuckle because for most of the projects I end up with, these prices are silly cheap. With local labour at about $100/hour, any fabrication that can be avoided by buying panels pays off quick.

The other concern is what fabricated panels do to the value of the car. I learned in the MGB world that cars with flat sheetmetal floors were essentially parts-cars when being sold. If that is not an issue, then go for it.

SilverFleet UltraDork
11/6/15 7:53 p.m.

Man, it's been a busy year. I have been booked solid basically up until last weekend, with zero time to wrench on stuff. On Halloween, I decided that I wanted to fire up the ol' bird and take it for a quick spin up the road and back before it sleeps all winter.

I grabbed the battery from the garage, and when I went to hook up the leads, lots of sparks started happening at the battery and down by the practially new starter. Then, lots of smoke from the starter area. WTF???

Anyone ever had this issue before? I didn't have time to jack it up and look around. And for the record, a couple months ago, everything was fine. All I did was remove the battery.

mbruneaux New Reader
11/7/15 10:42 a.m.

Corroded shorted starter? Red to red, black to black

Dusterbd13 UberDork
11/7/15 11:23 a.m.

Im thinking you accidentally reversed the terminals. Or have a bare spot in the positive cable touching ground. Probably the header.

SilverFleet UltraDork
2/11/16 1:10 p.m.

I did some thinking over the past couple months, and decided to cut bait with one of my projects to focus on actually finishing one of them. I have chosen to keep the Trans Am. I have a local guy I know that's really interested in the CSX, so I'm hoping he will be able to finish the project. He told me ages ago that he wanted the first crack at it when I decided to sell, so he's going to come check it out soon.

That said, it's time to come up with a plan on getting this car back on the road.

Last I left it, it was dead in the driveway and I couldn't start it. I believe one of the wires going to the starter got melty and has been shorting out, leading to the feedback on the battery when I try and hook it up. That is the first thing to be repaired as soon as the weather breaks.

Next order of business after the starter BS is some rust repair. I have two major rust spots: the front floors and the driver's bottom 1/4 panel. I have been searching for ages for extended front floor pan replacements with the toe boards with no luck... until last night. I found a company that distributes through Jegs that sells them for $139 shipped for both sides. I will be ordering them within the next month. I may have a chunk of quarter panel to cut up to fix the other hole.

Also, when the CSX leaves, I can pull the Trans Am into the garage for the first time I have owned it, and I've owned it for 14 years. Only problem is that when it's in there, it will be 2 feet from the work bench, so I may have to do some rearranging.

But I'm excited to FINALLY be able to focus on this car and give it the attention it deserves!

Dusterbd13 UberDork
2/11/16 5:44 p.m.

let me guess, AMD?

their stuff usually fits pretty good. better than some aftermarket, but still not perfect.

and glad to hear this getting some love again. if I was closer, id offer a hand r two.

2/11/16 6:03 p.m.

Glad to see this car's gonna get some attention! I'd get a real good look at the whole floor before ordering sheet metal. You may end up better off with sides or a full pan.

SEADave HalfDork
2/11/16 6:17 p.m.

Good idea to consolidate your projects, I'm glad the TA is the one that gets to stay. Super-cool car, and apart from the body work, doesn't sound like it too much work to having it a driver.

SilverFleet UltraDork
2/12/16 7:42 a.m.

Picking between the two cars was a decision I didn't take lightly. But here's the facts: I've had the Trans Am since 2002. I have wanted one since I was 5. I know what it needs, and they make almost everything under the sun for it now. I got the CSX in 2010, mainly because it was a great deal I couldn't pass up. It snowballed into a project that was beyond my skills, and between buying a house, getting married, working, etc. I just don't have the time to dedicate to it. Also, I've never driven or rode in one. I know what the Trans Am's all about, and I fit in there and like it. As much as I hate to give up on something, it was killing both cars to have spread myself too thin.

As far as the floors, basically the toe boards are toast, but the rot extends below the toe boards a little, so I need the front pan sections. Under the seat and back to the bulkhead are dry and rust free (yes, I checked!) Remember, this car has been driven sparingly over the past 14 years. It sat on gravel before it sat in my driveway, so it hasn't rotted from the ground up like most have. It's not to say that it doesn't have it's issues, but I couldn't buy this car in this shape for under $4k around here now. Most cars here have rotted rear frames and no rockers. Mine are solid.

I also have a line on a pair of doors and possibly a hood, but I don't want to buy even more stuff when I'm trying to purge all my Turbo Dodge stuff.

mbruneaux New Reader
2/12/16 3:33 p.m.

Great decision to keep the Trans AM.

Gearheadotaku PowerDork
2/12/16 8:47 p.m.

Looking forward to some good T 'n' A

Sounds like the CSX is on its way to a good home, both cars get cared for and everyone wins!

crankwalk Dork
3/11/16 8:23 p.m.

This car is outstanding. I'm glad you are sticking with it.

SilverFleet UltraDork
3/12/16 8:34 p.m.

Update Time!

I gave myself a deadline of the end of March to unload my CSX to its new owner, and the Trans Am was stuck in front of the garage where the CSX resides, and not running. Last time I tried starting it, the car did it's best to self immolate in protest. Hooking up the battery resulted in lots of sparks, melty smells, and smoke. That's never good. So today, it was finally nice out, so I went outside and got to work trying to figure out what the berk was going on.

That's the car as it sat this morning. Man, it's getting rough. It's got the "ratty musclecar" theme going for it though.

Here's what was going on with the starter. The headers I have (Summit 4-tubes) SUCK. They hit everything, and not even a mini starter will fit with them in there. The last starter lasted 10 years until the heat cooked the solenoid. The wires touch everything, which leads me to...

The power wire from the battery was resting directly against the block, which is not good. Even worse: the wire began to melt and then burn when I hooked up the battery! Ouch. There is heat wrap on the wire, but not at the very end, so that was the weak link.

I pulled the wire out and had a look at the damage. As gross as this is, I was able to clean it up, pull the heat wrap down a bit further, tape it up, and call it good. I will probably replace this down the road, but to get the car going, this was fine.

So, I get under there, get the wires in a better spot thanks to a wire holder on the firewall that I didn't ever see in the 14 years of owning the thing, and I see this on the S terminal of the solenoid. Luckily it was under a lifetime warranty, so I ran to the parts store and got another one.

Here's the new one in place, and the wires hooked up. Note the giant burn mark on the block. That's where the wire was before, and where it was touching. Not much space down here, but it's not touching anymore!

After charging the battery up, the car shook off the cobwebs and came back from the grave again! With it running, I was having trouble moving it, which I attributed to either the high stall converter I installed. Then, I started smelling a burning stench. Ugh... what now? Then I see where the smoke was coming from... the transmission dipstick tube. I checked the level, and it was BONE DRY. I'm not sure where the fluid went, but I added a quart and everything got better. It went into gear and moved under its own power. All in all, a successful day. It's very rare for me to get a win with this car, so I'm taking it.

Another very strange tidbit of info, and here's where things get weird: I had an omen of good fortune though very early this morning. Last night, I fell asleep with the TV on. At exactly 3AM, I woke up from a dead sleep. The DVR had been recording a show on VH1 Classic, and at the time when I woke up, I was greeted to the music video for the song Dream Warriors by the 80's hair band Dokken. Not only was that awesome, but I think it was a sign from the car gods. I've said it a million times, but this Trans Am only runs well when there's 80's hair metal coming out of the stereo. I don't care what anyone says, but some cars have souls or something like that, and this one LOVES 80's metal. The car got to listen to some Dokken while I was working on it today. I figured it couldn't hurt.

IndyJoe Reader
3/12/16 8:53 p.m.

Great day, good to see you getting a win, and keep the white snack, metallica and G-n-R playing !

SilverFleet UltraDork
3/14/16 7:47 a.m.

Here's a question for everyone: Have you ever had oil in an engine that looks like coffee with cream in it, but without a head gasket leak? This pic is from last year, but you get the point:

I am guessing that there's condensation building in the crankcase and mixing with the oil. Before this past Saturday, the car had been sitting for about 10 months without running. I changed the oil in it last year, and that's what the oil looked like. It looks like that again. When I first rebuilt the engine and got it back in the car around 2008-09, it didn't do this. Weird, right? I'm hoping that with the car running again, this will be less of a problem. I fully intend on driving it this year once I get some of the big projects (floors, light body work, gas tank) out of the way.

Should I run a motor flush or something like that before changing the oil again?

GPz11 New Reader
3/14/16 8:20 a.m.

I wouldn't do any type of flush or anything. Just change the oil again after driving it around a bit.

Mad_Ratel HalfDork
3/14/16 8:32 a.m.

I'd change the oil, water got into it somehow... (I'd have changed it the moment I saw that.)

I'd also run the motor until it's at full temp, it just could be sitting all this time w/o heating up enough to burn the water out ...

SilverFleet UltraDork
3/14/16 9:16 a.m.

I did change the oil as soon as I saw that! It's just that it did it again. I will change it again before I run it.

Side note: a local Walmart was clearing out all of their Purolator oil filters for $1.50 each, so I bought all of what they had in stock for each one of my cars. I'm not sure if that's a chain-wide deal, but consider this a heads-up.

SilverFleet UltraDork
3/14/16 2:26 p.m.

Don't mind me, leaving these links here for future reference:

LH Floor Pan FP01-75FL: http://www.goldenstarauto.com/Productdetails.aspx?id=FP01-75FL&c=1&sc=14&pi=3

RH Floor Pan FP01-75FR: http://www.goldenstarauto.com/Productdetails.aspx?id=FP01-75FR&c=1&sc=14&pi=4

crankwalk Dork
3/14/16 3:02 p.m.

I wouldn't worry about the condensation by thinking it's head gaskets immediately. On a car that has been sitting for a long time in between drives, that can form. As the others have said, get the oil nice hot then change it out.

SilverFleet UberDork
4/20/16 12:58 p.m.

Floor pans are on order! It will be nice to not have to fabricate them for once.

My CSX is scheduled to go to it's new owner this weekend. As soon as it leaves, it's Trans Am time. As sad as I am that I'm giving up on a project, it's for the best, and I learned a lot from that car.

First project I'm tackling is the gas tank, because I don't want to blow up my car, garage, and myself while welding in the new floors. I'm hoping to find the remnants of my car's build sheet tucked up there.

chiodos Dork
4/20/16 2:39 p.m.

Just saw your post about purolators, ran to walmart cause thats all I use and ours no longer stocks purolators. Wtf?

Edit: found a dozen in the clearance section for 75 cents, unfortunately all oddball sizes

SilverFleet UberDork
4/20/16 3:46 p.m.

In reply to chiodos:

I totally happened upon this when I went in to grab some filters for other vehicles, so I stocked up. I like Purolator filters and have been using them for years on everything. Not sure what's up with Walmart not carrying them in the stores anymore.

4/21/16 11:28 p.m.

Good to see you're back on it! Maybe drop the tank, then do all your welding while tank is out to reduce risk? I've been making a batch of front inner fender extensions for 76-81 birds this week. Apparently no one repros them and I got requests for them. Still have a few bends to make in them then paint.



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