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 LROM February

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nstg8r



Posts : 295
Join date : 2012-07-26
Age : 39
Location : Arvada, CO

PostSubject: LROM February   Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:47 pm

I was pretty much destined from the start to become a car guy.  My dad sold Trans Am's in the 70's and 80's (he now owns an 89 GTA and I have a 93 Formula). Fast forward a few years and for my 14th birthday he gets me a 1969 Pontiac Tempest. It was rusty and dented and didn't run, but no one else I knew owned a car at 14.  It was around the same time that I started taking auto shop and loved it.  I was the kid that was staying late after school to help the teacher or work on anything I could.  I would walk home in the dark because I spent every minute I could underneath of whatever car was being worked on in shop.  I rebuilt a 305 out of an 82 Camaro for the Tempest but never managed to finish that project.  My first car that I actually got to drive was a 1962 Chevy II.  It too was a real piece, but this one ran.






Then after that I talked my mom into a small loan and I picked up a 1970 Chevelle Malibu.  This was a fun car but I was young and wanted something with a manual so I stupidly sold that and bought a 1981 Corvette with a 4 speed.  It was slow but it had a manual transmission and I could afford it.  It was with this car that I really got my first taste of modifying for performance.  After the rear end grenaded I had the 2.72 gears swapped out for 3.23 gears and it woke it up quite a bit.  I eventually lost interest and parked it.  After saving up for a few years, I bought a 1993 Firebird Formula and really fell in love with that.  I have put quite a bit of work into that one.  Fast forward to a few years ago when I sold the Corvette and not much after that I decided I wanted a b-body.  I started looking, and well Impala SS’s were too expensive and most caprices with the lt1 in this area were beat within an inch of it’s life.  At some point I discovered that they offered the lt1 in the wagons and the hunt was on.



I looked at many wagons, they seemed to fall into 2 categories; the owner was way too proud of them and wanted $8k or they were a complete pile of crap and the owner still wanted $5k.  Then my dad found one that was listed for something like $1200.  It looked like a total piece, but when I went to look at it, pretty much everything was there.  The doors on the driver’s side had some huge dents, the digital dash didn’t work, it was filthy (is there a stronger word than filthy?) inside and it wasn’t running 100%, it had 2 wire wheel covers on one side and rusty steelies on the other.  But there wasn’t anything I couldn’t easily fix.  It had the lt1, the towing package, the manual hvac system, and the best part.  We managed to talk her down to $800.  So I bought it and drove it home.  First order of business was getting the wheels/tires sorted out, because why make it run right when looks are more important.  Then I fixed the digital dash, this turned out to not be very hard at all, just had to re-flow the solder.  Then about this time it died on me, after doing some research on here and what I knew about lt1 cars, I set to replacing the fuel pump.  Wow did it run a lot better after that.  I drove it like that for quite a while until I got to join the rank of those who have 4l60e tranny problems.  But hey that’s just an opportunity to upgrade, right? So I spent almost as much on a stall as the tranny rebuild. But now it had some pretty serious grunt down low.  I have many plans in the future, but right now it’s having to serve daily driver duty so it unfortunately doesn’t get a ton of love.
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Andebe

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Posts : 3146
Join date : 2013-02-20
Age : 49
Location : Marion,NC

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:30 am

Nice write up...Ive been itching for a 69-72 Tempest/Le Mans lately. Coupe or wagon!
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nstg8r



Posts : 295
Join date : 2012-07-26
Age : 39
Location : Arvada, CO

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sat Feb 06, 2016 12:20 pm

Andebe wrote:
Nice write up...Ive been itching for a 69-72 Tempest/Le Mans lately. Coupe or wagon!
Thanks, the only car I've ever owned that I don't miss is the Corvette. I have been thinking of selling a few cars and picking up either a 68-69 Tempest/Le Mans or a 1970 Chevelle. My other thought is a c5 Corvette (I know, I know) or build an old flat fender jeep with a small block Chevy.
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Sprocket

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Posts : 5432
Join date : 2008-11-04
Location : Palm Beach County

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:21 pm

Nice write up, but needs more wagon pics lol!!*

Thanks for sharing
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nstg8r



Posts : 295
Join date : 2012-07-26
Age : 39
Location : Arvada, CO

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:26 pm

Sprocket wrote:
Nice write up, but needs more wagon pics lol!!*

Thanks for sharing
You guys have seen all my wagon pics
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dmg4

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Posts : 792
Join date : 2014-08-13
Age : 64
Location : Geneva, New York

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sat Feb 06, 2016 8:25 pm

"You guys have seen all my wagon pics"

I haven't. You could always take some new ones, or just post the best of the old.
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nstg8r



Posts : 295
Join date : 2012-07-26
Age : 39
Location : Arvada, CO

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sun Feb 07, 2016 12:00 am


When I first brought it home.

New doors.

Rear door off.

Rear door on.

Both doors replaced.

Winter tires.
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Dutch Pete

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Posts : 421
Join date : 2009-12-07
Age : 58
Location : Netherlands

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sun Feb 07, 2016 10:24 am

Nice write up. Replacing the doors is indeed the easiest way to get rid of any damage. LOL
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Andebe

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Posts : 3146
Join date : 2013-02-20
Age : 49
Location : Marion,NC

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Mon Feb 08, 2016 12:41 pm

Im kinda digging that look with the doors off. Very Fantasy Island...Look,Boss Da plane!!!
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Sprocket

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Posts : 5432
Join date : 2008-11-04
Location : Palm Beach County

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Tue Feb 09, 2016 9:57 am

I had not seen these pics either, thank you.

How did you cover the higher beltline and the fly away panel from the Buick doors?
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silverfox103
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Join date : 2008-11-05
Age : 69
Location : Littleton, NH & St. Simons, GA

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Sun Feb 28, 2016 2:24 pm

Thanks nstg8r!

Nice story and great job getting her fixed up. Smart move with replacing the doors.

What I liked best about the story is how you found one a bargain price. There are plenty of them out there, you just have to look.

Thanks again for being the wagon of the month!


Tom
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nstg8r



Posts : 295
Join date : 2012-07-26
Age : 39
Location : Arvada, CO

PostSubject: Re: LROM February   Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:48 am

Sprocket wrote:
I had not seen these pics either, thank you.

How did you cover the higher beltline and the fly away panel from the Buick doors?
Sorry I didn't see this earlier.  I haven't done anything with the higher belt line yet.  The fly away panel I just covered with black sign vinyl for right now until I can have those holes shaved/filled.

silverfox103 wrote:
Thanks nstg8r!

Nice story and great job getting her fixed up.  Smart move with replacing the doors.

What I liked best about the story is how you found one a bargain price.  There are plenty of them out there, you just have to look.

Thanks again for being the wagon of the month!


Tom
Thanks, I love working on cars.  It wasn't easy finding that bargin, but it was nice to bring one back from the brink of death.  I'm sure if just about anyone else had bought it, they would have parted it out and it would be one less rare wagon on the road.
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