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1980 Resto-Mod: From Alpha to Omega.

 
Old 12-30-2017, 11:42 PM
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vetski179
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Default 1980 Resto-Mod: From Alpha to Omega.

First, a huge 'Thank You' to the members of this forum who have taken the time to answer my posts about my project. Tracdogg2 especially! I now have what I hope is enough knowledge to undertake the project I've been waiting over 10 years to do. I plan on posting regular updates as I plod along.

Small bit of background: This is the fourth Vette I've owned. 2 1974's, an '81, and this 1980. My fav was my second '74, an LS4 454 car. I liked that car a lot, but traded it for the down payment on a rental house in 1989. Always wanted that car under a 1980-1982's skin.

Got this car in about 2003 and decided this would be the car for that. Life happened, and, here we are almost 15 years latter getting under way. Watch as I journey along. I'd love to read your comments!

The car is an LG4 305 California car. Found it in a guy's yard. $1500 later I was on the road. I didn't think I'd make it the 20-odd miles home. A vicious rod knock was voicing its disapproval, and I thought one of those rods would exit the block, top fuel style! 30 minutes latter, I was home, without incident, thankfully. That was the last time the 305 powered the car. Called it 'The Mildew Machine' as it was outside when I found it, and sat a long time at my place in the weather too.
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Old 12-31-2017, 06:48 AM
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Good luck with your project! It really is exciting to start with a blank slate, isn't it?

What plans do you have for it?
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Old 12-31-2017, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by vetski179 View Post
First, a huge 'Thank You' to the members of this forum who have taken the time to answer my posts about my project. Tracdogg2 especially! I now have what I hope is enough knowledge to undertake the project I've been waiting over 10 years to do. I plan on posting regular updates as I plod along.

Small bit of background: This is the fourth Vette I've owned. 2 1974's, an '81, and this 1980. My fav was my second '74, an LS4 454 car. I liked that car a lot, but traded it for the down payment on a rental house in 1989. Always wanted that car under a 1980-1982's skin.

Got this car in about 2003 and decided this would be the car for that.
Life happened, and, here we are almost 15 years latter getting under way. Watch as I journey along and I'd love to read your comments!

The car is an LG4 305 California car. Found it in a guy's yard. $1500 later I was on the road. I didn't think I'd make it the 20-odd miles home. A vicious rod knock was voicing its disapproval, and I thought one of those rods would exit the block, top fuel style! 30 minutes latter, I was home, without incident, thankfully. That was the last time the 305 powered the car. Called it 'The Mildew Machine' as it was outside when I found it, and sat a long time at my place in the weather too.
Just know, If I can do it, you can too !




There is always a first time !
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Old 12-31-2017, 12:34 PM
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I just finished the frame off portion of my build. The body is back on now, but bodywork and interior are left to do,. The mechanical is all done.

I would suggest you blast the frame and look it over for cracks very well. I found a lot of cracks in the welds on my frame. I fully welded it and gusseted it to make it stronger and stiffer.

You will have fun, but will find times you will curse. Just stay at it and it will be worth it.

Some photos for encouragement.

Mike

The red arrows are pointing to cracks.


Welded and gusseted.


Ready for the body.
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Old 12-31-2017, 04:28 PM
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Default Plans

Plans? I like detailing. I'll be taking a lot of pictures. It's going to be fun to see this grimy POS turn into something special and see the before and after pix. I've done several restorations/hot rod projects. As I look back on them, I often say it was more fun to be doing them rather than having them done. The only exception to this is my Yamaha Superjets, which I used to race. You can get on the lake, use the power to it's fullest extent (or, as much as my aging body will allow!) and get a great workout too. Where can you really use 600HP in a car? Might consider autocross/road or drag racing, but my pockets aren't that deep. I have been honest with myself about this project. I won't be using it much. A sunny day occasional cruiser at best. 5AM on an early summer morning for coffee. I drive for Boeing 40+ hours a week. Traffic is nuts here in Seattle, and I have all I can handle during the week.

I'll post some pix of these other projects.

I had plans to start this project 10 years ago. Originally wanted a 540BBC. But, remembered my '74 LS4 and the restrictive intake manifold. I wanted to have this '80 maintain the stock, un-modified hood. Was very serious about an LS conversion, but decided to go with a classic Gen 1 big inch small block/manual trans. A local guy was practically giving away a Bill Mitchell Hardcore 454. With memories of my LS4, I bought it! I put a Doug Nash 5 speed in that '74. So, when I found a Richmond ROD 6 speed, I picked that up. I have had these for over 10 years, and that is what will make up the drive train. At that same time, I bought an openable hatch from a wrecked '82 Collector Edition.
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Old 12-31-2017, 04:32 PM
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Thank you for your reply, PainfullySlow. This project of mine will will be just that!

Thank you v2racing for the nice pix and tips. Your project is very nice indeed!
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Old 01-06-2018, 03:10 PM
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Default Disassembly. Ick!

Took the hood off, as well as the intake. Wanted to check the under-hood clearances for intake manifold/carb selection. This poor car! Looks like oil hadn't been changed for years!
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Old 01-06-2018, 05:19 PM
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well it sounds like the car is in good hands now , looking forward to seeing you transform her into what you want her to be now
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Old 01-10-2018, 12:48 AM
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Default Prep for this project.

My hope with this series of posts is to help those who might wish to do a similar thing to their car, and save another one from the scrap heap.

Frankly, I would not have been up to doing a project like mine had I not prepared by starting small.

I started with 3 motorcycles, and little bikes at that. 3 Honda 50's. A 1970 QA50 K0 was the first one, followed by its slightly more complicated cousins, Z50's. A 1968 K0 and a 1969 K1. All 3 of the bikes looked as bad as the K1 in the top 2 pix when I started in on them.

By doing these, I learned about disassembly, cataloging and storing the various parts and pieces, how to research the resto's via books and the internet, where to find the needed parts, the working space, cost, and time required, and who I would need to do the stuff that was beyond my capability.

Then, it was a matter of up-sizing as the projects got bigger.
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:46 PM
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Default Engine is out.

Ewww! Couldn't look worse if it had been underwater!
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Old 01-21-2018, 05:16 PM
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Default More disassembly

We'll get to the bottom of this..

Also, a brief look ahead with a test fit of the new engine. Something with a bit more poop than the 305!
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Old 01-21-2018, 05:51 PM
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Your cooking with gas now !
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Old 01-26-2018, 04:00 PM
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Are you having fun yet ?

The pics with the rust are just like "damn" I'd hate to be the one working with that.

Best to you on your project !
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Old 01-26-2018, 04:48 PM
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Body is off. It has been a lot of fun actually. Can't wait to get it to the bare minimum and begin making it better and prettier.
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Old 01-26-2018, 04:57 PM
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Hi V,
REALLY coming apart in those photos!
Now you can see what you have.
Carry on!
Regards,
Alan

CB radio?
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Old 01-26-2018, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by vetski179 View Post
Where can you really use 600HP in a car?

0 to 60 Baby!!!!!



It appears you got your hands on a CE pop-up rear window assembly. Are you going to use it on this build?? I wonder if you could just used the rear glass and hardware on your current Vette or would you have to graft in the CE's window and frame onto your body?
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Old 01-27-2018, 09:31 PM
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Yes, the plan is to use the CE pop up hatch in this project. As I get in the vicinity of the body work (doing the chassis/engine/trans first), I will compare my car's rear window area and over the head loop to the CE's to see how it was modified to accept the hatch hinges and related hardware. If I understand the 1982 CE's, they were sent in partially completed form from Chevy to a vendor for the hatch installation. So, it seems to me measurements could be taken from my '82 hatch and then applied to my '80 as far as recesses for the hinges, then mods made to mine for them. I'm hoping this will work as it seems far more difficult to cut the entire roof from my '80 and graft on everything from the CE. I suppose that's possible too. As I get closer to body work, I'm going to be consulting with a pro on this, as this kind of major surgery is way beyond me. I can do the 'wax on, wax off' type of grunt work, but I will need a pro to steer me through, as, there is also the issue with the damaged left front fender and door to deal with too. Any ideas of someone in the Pacific Northwest that might be the pro I'm looking for?
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Old 01-28-2018, 10:41 PM
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Interesting build. I live just north of You in N Seattle. I also have an 1980 that I made into a Pro Tour style car before there was such a thing. Anyway to me all I see is surface rust typical of a west coast car. I'd get a real good look at the frame kick ups in front of the rear end and that will tell the story. I didn't see a reason to pull the front clip but I'll bet the bonding had broken at the firewall. A replacement Door is easy to find. You will need to decide to repair the Fender or replace it. There is a guy in Centralia who has all these parts at reasonable prices. The Fiberglass work you need just isn't all that difficult in the sum of what you got going on. I have a bunch of left over Suspension Brake parts You might be interested in as well. I work in Alaska so I won't be home till April.
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Old 01-31-2018, 10:01 PM
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Thanks Banks. That guy in Centralia posts to Craigslist all the time, right?
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Old 02-01-2018, 12:59 AM
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Originally Posted by vetski179 View Post
Thanks Banks. That guy in Centralia posts to Craigslist all the time, right?
Yes He does. There used to be Pacific Corvette just off 512 but I think they are gone there Portland store might be still around. Everything I have ever got from them has been junk its gone straight into the trash. There is also a guy in Gig Harbor parts out C3's on CL. I know he had all the CE rear window parts except the Glass.
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