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BUILD 1971 Nova - Work in Progress


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cap42

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So I checked around and couldn't find any welders that I was looking at in stock or available to deliver that wasn't 3-4 weeks out at the minimum. So I bit the bullet and went back to Eastwood and bought the Mig 180, I had a coupon and luckily I got one of the guys who looked at my old 175 so he gave me a discount on top. I bought some supplies while I was there so I think I got the welder for $430.

So far I'm pretty pleased with how well this thing lays down welds, much better than the old 175. I still have it plugged into my 220 outlet but I think I'm going to get better results plugging it into one of my 20A 110 outlets. I think the biggest reason why I was getting inconsistent welds on the old 175 was it was trying to weld sheet metal (20 gauge) with a 220v transformer welder. It never had a problem welding thicker materials, spot welding sheet metal it was very difficult to get it to just do a consistent tack weld even without changing any of the settings. It would either be too hot or too cold unless you were laying a tack every 2-3 seconds. You had to get into a rhythm and add more wire speed or else you'd burn through.

This 180 was dialed in and laying both nice beads and tack welds within a minute of playing with the amperage and wire speed and expert level looking welds. I didn't grab any pics because I was in the zone and just knocking shit out. I think I'll actually do a review video comparing the old 175 to the new 180. While I am pretty pleased with the performance of this new welder there are a few little things I could nitpick at.

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Here are the driver side patches I burned in, it's all metal finished in these photo's.

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Here's what I'll be painting all of this with when I am done metal finishing and prepping the undercarriage.

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I grabbed Por 15 bed liner, was low cost and it's Por15 so you know it's good shit. I also picked up a gallon of etching primer which will be the base. I'll use the rubberized undercoating in the wheel wells.

So it will be 2 coats of etching primer, 2 coats of Por 15 bed liner and then I will put the rubberized undercoating in the wheel wells as it will soften impact from road debris (burnouts, rocks etc) so it doesn't chip the bed liner.
 

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I'm interested to see how the welder does. I've been thinking about upgrading my Eastwood 135 for awhile.
 
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Not much to update on the car, I sent a few hours welding up small holes and some grinding. I ran out of gas in the mig welder so it kind of put a halt on everything. So I made a quick review video of the new welder.

 
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Worked on the car all weekend, the majority of it was cleaning up old welds and welding up some pinholes in the trunk and interior area. Not very interesting so I didn't take any pics of that. I did grab some of a block off panel I made for the DSE cross member and a section of the passenger rocker.

Here is the cross member area, for some reason the instructions from DSE didn't have you weld this area closed on the drivers side. This cross member connects the trunk floor to both inner wheel tubs and eventually the upper shock mounts will be put on this cross member. While I was addressing welds inside the trunk area I noticed a large gap between the cross member and the driver tub. I don't want debris or any exhaust inside the car so I decided to make my own closeout panel. The DSE cross member is 1/8th plate. Here is the new eastwood Mig 180 making short work of it.

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I also started getting the car cleaned up for painting, I started cleaning the floors and vacuuming up everything I could and then using the air gun with the regulator wide open to blow out the car/garage. This meant blowing out the frame rails as well and when I did the rockers I noticed a bunch of crap coming out of a rotted section I hadn't gotten to yet. This is the passenger rocker cut open where the rot was.

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Not sure if you can see inside it that clearly but this is everything I pulled out.

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Fuckin rats, I did this on the drivers side at some point but must have forgot to get the passenger side. I finished cleaning out that rocker and welded in a new patch, forgot to grab a pic. I'll be injecting a frame sealant into the rockers and the frame rails along with the floor cross members so prevent any further rust.

I'm going to give the car another once over and if I don't see anything else that needs addressing I'll be doing a final wipe down and start masking off the car. Right in time for the weather to heat up so it will be hotter than hell in the garage laying down primer and bedliner.
 

LikeABauce302

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:love: that looks incredible! Very nice work and well worth all of your labor. I can't wait to see how this turns out.
 
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Been slackin, toooooo friggen hot in the garage the last couple of weekends, I've been breaking it up to a few hours either early in the am or late in the evening when it's cooled off. I finished up the seam sealer and then started scuffing the primer to get the bedliner ready to spray. This weekend should be cool enough to spray that on. That should end the work on the undercarriage.

I've got to start ordering suspension parts in hopes they will be here when I'm ready to bolt it all back together. Sorry no pics/videos this time all boring crap.
 
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Finally, almost a year to complete what I thought was just going to be a few weeks. Bedliner is on and it came out pretty good. I wasn't able to get it sprayed on with my HVLP gun even with a 2.0 tip, the gun just couldn't handle the PSI I needed to spray this thick of a fluid. I broke out the Schutz gun and pumped my pressure to 60 PSI. I didn't want to go that route but I had already mixed the bedliner and reducer and didn't want to waste material or a cool enough day. I had a few runs on the trunk pan, my old Schutz gun was just sticking badly after the 3rd coat.

I caught it all on video and uploaded it to youboob.


For those that don't want to watch 10 mins of these shenanigans. Here's a few pics.

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Now I need to get crackin on the parts especially the suspension components. I first have to figure out what I'm doing with the rearend, being that's it a 8.2 I doubt it's going to hold up to bigger tires and hopefully a little more hp than it had. I need new leafs and bushings and mounts regardless if I keep this assembly or a new one. Anyone have suggestions of what to do here? I can think of no less than a dozen options to go with here.
 
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I spent over 3 G's with Detroit Speed to get all the suspension components I would need. Some of the parts are on backorder but only 3-4 weeks out. Here's what I ordered.

Front:
Upper/Lower Control Arms with bushings and ball joints.
2" drop springs
Standard Replacement shocks

Rear:
2" leaf springs
Offset Shackles
Front and rear bushings
Leaf Spring perch with lower shock mounts
Upper Shock mounts
Standard Replacement shocks

This weekend I took I wanted to get everything stripped off the rear axle and subframe so I could get it all cleaned up and ready for paint. I got the rear leaf's and caltracs off along with the brake lines and their mounts. I am leaving the current leaf spring perch on so I can do mockup.

I then attempted to tackle the front, I got the driver side minus the LCA fully stripped down. With no weight on the subframe it was a long process of using a ratchet strap and a chain to relieve the spring pressure from the ball joints. For the life of me I can't get one side of the LCA to drop out of the subframe. I had a 2 ft prybar trying to spread the pocket and no bueno.... So next time I get out there I will try and get that and the passenger side done.

First pic, let me know if something catches your eye.....

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This car must have been a drum brake setup all around, I don't know who made this kit so I'm gonna be a bit lost on finding discs and pads.
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Just documenting the shims.
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For anyone who watched the video I made, this is what I was talking about regarding previous owners welding on the subframe. I've got to clean this all up and see what was going on here. With the shit work done on this car I am hoping they didn't fuck up the subframe. I tried to get measurements but without knowing the factory measurements and their measuring points it isn't going to help me.
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I just looked on SNS, I'm torn between it being a factory rotor or the right stuff conversion kit. The rotor hat has a large dish, I need to go out in the garage to measure the one I pulled off the car. I'll see if there is a part number on the calipers.

Did everyone miss how burnt up that spindle was in the first pic? :eek:
 
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Looks like it's a Right Stuff conversion kit, rotor and calipers all look like their components? The spindle, steering arms all look the same between stock and Right Stuff. Of course this is all going off their online pictures which is always a crap shoot on if those are right.

I hate trying to figure this shit out... I wish they had done just a later model F body or C5 conversion kit because I can just order that shit from the normal parts stores.
 

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Yeah, she seemed to have gotten a bit of heat I was kind of side stepping it. It may behoove you to make sure your wheel bearings aren't loosey goosey on that.

Any chance the calipers themselves have markings on em? That'd be the best way to look, I think you could probably reduce it down to 5 or less options for pads:
1-Small size pre 78 GM (say 71 Nova)
2-Mid size pre 78 GM (say 71 Lemans)
3-full size pre 78 GM (Say 71 Catalina)
4-78-88 Monte Carlo
5-78-88 Caprice

For in store pads I like the Napa Premium ones. The last ones I got were Ceramics and they had great friction coefficient (GG) as well.

How big of diameter is the rotor? That may further let you narrow your choices down.

Also, it's probably not worth getting frustrated they didn't put "newer" brakes on the car. Mods like that are best reflected on within the frame of time they're done. The 383 I got from you is a great example, that was a super nice engine in the early 00s now everyone does LSes. The fourth gen brake swaps likely didn't even exist at that time.
 
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I'm going to be replacing all the wheel bearings, and rubber components on the front and rear of this car. All the boots are shot, there was water in the dust caps of the bearings. The bearing grease was milky so water has been in there a while.

I'm not going to be ordering brakes soon as the car will still be sitting for several months (or years). No sense in letting the rotors rust sitting there. I'm just trying to figure out a low cost solution to replacing the spindles and brakes so I can plan this all out. I don't want to buy stock spindles if I need to switch to a different rotor setup that needs a different spindle.

I originally wanted to turn this into a true pro-touring car and throw it around some courses. Now I think it will just be a nice driver so I don't want to dump too much into components that won't benefit the car. Some 3rd or 4rth gen F body brakes or C5 brakes would be more than enough for this junk.
 

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Can you tell me if these are about 11" diameter, 1" thick for the rotor and about 4" from the wheel mounting face to the back of the rotor? That'd mean they were probably OEM.

Besides that I'd give REAL serious consideration to going to 1/2" wheel studs especially with aftermarket wheels. I used Dorman PN 610-395 which is $9/10 from Rockauto for the Lemans. Odds are good they'd do you right too but check to be sure. I don't trust 7/16 studs on newer wheels with larger holes after what happened to me in the Lemans. If I wasn't trying to move and had the lathe up I'd offer to cut up your rotors for you. It's likely if you looked through my build thread the majority of what I did would work for you as well. The abutements are different for C5 Calipers but supposedly other than that you just slap on the 13" rotors, calipers and abutements and they'll work with those adapters too.
 

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Those look like stock discs. They wont bolt to the drum spindle without work. Also I have 2 sets of those spindles, they both look like those. They are heat treated so as long as the bearing surface isnt smoked they are good. Progress looks great!
 
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Can you tell me if these are about 11" diameter, 1" thick for the rotor and about 4" from the wheel mounting face to the back of the rotor? That'd mean they were probably OEM.

Besides that I'd give REAL serious consideration to going to 1/2" wheel studs especially with aftermarket wheels. I used Dorman PN 610-395 which is $9/10 from Rockauto for the Lemans. Odds are good they'd do you right too but check to be sure. I don't trust 7/16 studs on newer wheels with larger holes after what happened to me in the Lemans. If I wasn't trying to move and had the lathe up I'd offer to cut up your rotors for you. It's likely if you looked through my build thread the majority of what I did would work for you as well. The abutements are different for C5 Calipers but supposedly other than that you just slap on the 13" rotors, calipers and abutements and they'll work with those adapters too.
Rotors are 11" and 1" thick but it's only 3" and some change on the hub mounting surface to back of the rotor. I also can't find any stampings on the calipers so these very well may be oem brakes.

The current cragars are universal fits without a hubcentric ring. In my experience that's been more the problem than the wheel stud size. Although it wouldn't hurt to upgrade those as long as the newer wheels will accept a 1/2 stud. I never planned on keeping these wheels but now they have to go before the car ever rolls again.
 

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