Realized I havent updated a few changes we made in our build.
In late July we were offered a great deal for a swap on the M22 transmission we had in the car, our M22 for a freshly rebuilt 700R4, new Hurst shifter, and $350. We took the deal with the idea that since the cars not going to be original anyways were not hurting the value or the build alot more than we already have, and the 700R4 has a little better gear ratio that'll help this car cruise and save some fuel.
Early August we were offered another deal for $1300 a low mileage 4L80E 6 spd auto with wire harness, stand alone computer, and manual/auto shifting micro switch's. Since we'd already decided to swap the trans the only real question was did we want to spend the money for the 6 speed auto. After some discussion it was decided to go with the 4L80E since the final gear is a little better than the 700R4 and it has a little better reputation for durability.
The car is back together now and a few small bugs are being worked out so that it can be sent to the paint shop.
A test drive earlier this week impressed me and it feels like a completely different vehicle than the one I brought to the shop in July.
Went to visit the Nova at the shop this morning, was kind of hoping it was still driveable so I could take it out this weekend, but no such luck, it's on jackstands with the rear end out and the engine in pieces, no projected time frame on when it'll be back on the road. Unfortunately this was part of the deal, I gave them a six month time frame so it could be worked on in their spare time, this gave me a better labour rate but means I have to wait for the end product. Oh well at least it took a project off of my back so I have time to work on something else.
Thats what I'm hoping. It'll never be a powerhouse hotrod or classic show car but I'm counting on a reliable cruiser. My wife cruise with a club called Classic Gas once in a while and this car fits right in wiht them.
My 8 yr old grandaughter has already gotten attached to it, we originally promised her we'd keep our Jeep maintained and let her have that when she turns 16/gets her drivers license but she's already trying to convince us to give this car instead.
that car sounds like a very nice find indeed,with those improvements,that'll make a great daily driver
After a discussion with my friend about plans for the Nova he made me an offer on a bunch of parts.
All the parts are low mileage off of a wrecked 71 Nova or new, he guarrantees all of them to be like new.
I got the following:
Modine 4 core radiator, with dual electric cooling fans attached
Serpentine belt drive system with underdrive pulleys
Modine water pump
Mallory electronic replacement ignition system with Accel distributor, coil, yellow top dist. cap, wires, and spark plugs
Fuely .194 heads with stainless steel valves, roller rockers, and Manly replacement spring set
Comp cams small block Chevy RV cam for roller valve systems
Holley 750 carb, dual plane manifold, and K&N filter
Holley electric fuel pump
Pete Jackson Tephlon coated Timing gear drive set
Chevrolet Ram Horn early 60's Corvette factory exhaust manifolds with Gibson stainless steel dual exhaust, crossover, mufflers, and pipes to the rear bumper
150 Amp alternator
New engine and transmission mounts
Front spindle conversion kit for 4 piston disk brakes (drums up front now)
Master Cylinder and Vacume booster for the conversion kit
Replacement r/r axle with larger truck brake drum conversion kit and 3.73 pinion & gears
5 brand new Polyglass 60 series 15" "Red Stripe" OEM tires with matching factory ralley rims
Tilt steering column with SS steering wheel (though my cars an SS it has the standard steering wheel)
2/3" Helliwig spring lowering kit with Helliwig traction/sway bars
New Billstein shocks for all 4 corners
New Energy suspension tephlon bushing kit for body mounts and suspension
I paid $1500 for all the parts and he's going to have his mechanic that works on his cars put all the parts on for me in the next couple weeks. The mechanic is going to do a light rebuild on the engine since it's running good but he has to pull it to do all the other engine work too. I still have to buy a gasket kit.
When the work is complete all we'll have left to do is repaint, after looking at the top I realized it was recently replaced and just needed a good cleaning and coating with protectant.
The engine mods should bring the horsepower to an honest 300, I'm not looking for performance since this is the wifes cruiser and will probably never be asked to bark the tires or see the high side of 65mph, but I am hoping it'll improve the gas mileage, right now it's getting mid teens, I'm looking for 20 mpg at least.
As plans and work progress the wife is getting more excited so I wont be surprised if this becomes her main mode of transportation and the HHR ends up sitting most of the time.
An update to the progress.
A good friend of is a leading authority on all things Chevy Nova, he owns over 60 different Nova's and 5 of those are on the Nova National registry as rare and suspected one of a kind cars: 1969 4 Door Nova SS big block 396/4spd 1 of 10 built, 1969 Nova SS 396/4spd right hand drive with reverse pattern M22 transmission built in the UK 1 of 1 known to exist, 1973 Nova 2dr Police Package with 454/TH400 1 of 40 built, 1974 Nova 4 door Police package with 454/TH400 # built unkown, and 1970 Yenko Nova with Small Block 350.
So I brought the Nova by his shop to get a good estimate on what I have. As I suspected the 1970 2 dr SS Nova with front bench seat and 4 spd isnt rare, probably over a 1000 of them outfitted this way that year.
I don't make many resolutions, I tend to make goals through out the year as it goes on.
my main thing is to get rid of more things around the house. After being here for 20 years theres a lot of things that I don't need from when the kids were little. I need to toss and or donate. I also need to paint the house.
Another box delivered by FED EX, not sure whats in this box, it'll have to wait until I get home from work tonight.
I hear what your saying, I have never been too big on New Year Resolutions either, but last year I said I was going to live offline a little more, being a huge tech geek, I spend way too much time online(although a lot is educating myself.. no really) but with a young son, and all the time away I have to spend from my family, I felt the one thing and best thing I could do to improve myself was to unplug from the internet/technology and spend time with the family. Overall I really think I did pretty good however since I have been deployed most of the year I think I will extend last years resolution to next year. As far as a second resolution goes, either more emphasis on my college or make better financial plans for my retirement from the Army in 4 or 5 years...
Gotta start somewhere, nobody really takes New Years Resolutions seriously, do they?
haha, limit the amount of project vehicles to two? How longs that going to last?
I've heard it both ways over the years. From previous experience in Aviation where there was a high degree of vibration we were restricted to soldiering only for connections so I've always leaned in that direction.
I have had problems with crimped connections working loose after a while.
But in the end I think the key thing is as you pointed out "installing them properly".
There is a proper way to do crimped connections, part of that is tinning the wire ends, so if I got the soldiering gun out to tin the wires I'll probably go ahead and finish off by soldiering everything together.
From what I've read, it's actually better to use crimp terminals (installing them properly) in vehicles rather than soldering because the vibrations of the vehicle will eventually break the joints. That said, I still solder connections when possible in my trucks. But, I've begun to use crimp terminals more.
I cant say much about the splitter installed, the one in the chassis right now is a preproduction test model that hasnt had an approved patent yet. Prior to delivery back to me one off the assembly line will be installed. The cost to me will be R&D use of the truck for 2 months, Vendor showings of the truck for 2 months, and both rear quarter panels will have vinal appliques on with the Vendors name for 2 years.
Some time next spring I should know if the splitter will be worth the price.
You mentioned putting a gear splitter overdrive behind your transmission? Which one did you get and how much did it cost? I tried looking it up and the best I came up with was a Gear Vendor overdrive that would cost me $3200. I'm thinking if I do the upgrades I want to so that I can tow my trailer, the overdrive might buy me some MPG back so it's more or less where I stand right now. Thanks as always for your contributions Tim!
I havent really run this project, it's been running me. It's now completely different than our plan when we started, everything originally was to be done local and I would be diving the truck by Christmas. The original drivetrain I bought/rebuilt has been replaced. Fuel is now Proane vice Gasoline, the trans has a Rover overdrive with the 700R4, the 1 ton r/r diff has been replaced with a modified 1966 3ton 2 spd diff., the body's been chopped , sectioned, and channeled and I was planning stock sheet metal.
I'm still close to my budget though because of reselling parts I had but couldnt or didnt want to use.
The new drivetrain (Eng, overdrive, and R/R diff) is gonna cost me advertising space on the tailgate for a few years.
Wow. I am not quite sure how people can run projects and not be able to drive or otherwise enjoy vehicles for years on end. Granted, it is fun to fab and work on the vehicles, but it's not driving either... Perhaps when I get the time and money to do something like this I will see it in a different light.
Been a long time since I wrote anything on the Dually project.
It's come a long way but is farther from being finished.
In late May we got the rolling chassis together dropped the motor and trans in, and put the body on for the trip to Ca.
My brother hauled it to his paint and body shop in Sacramento, Ca. where they were gonna disassemble the body, install the wire harness, paint the body, reassemble, and have the interior finished.
A minor incident on the way to Ca. caused a little extra bodywork, in the process of straightening a panel that had gotten hit by a road sign my brother decided to try his first attempt at sectioning a GM truck body. He sectioned the body by 1.5", siince the porportions were now off he decided to chop the top by 1.5", lay back the "A" pillars a few degrees, and channel the body by 1". This led to dropping the engine/trans down 1.5" and back 2.5", notching the front frame rails for a low profile radiator, and lowering the seats by 1.5".
So final body work is still in work at this time and paint is a month off.
My brother discussed the project with the shop next door to his and struck a deal to convert the truck to propane. Since I had a new engine with 0 miles "Propane Concepts and Performance" replaced my new engine with another new Propane tuned engine running 11.5 to 1 compression and guaranteed to produce 375 HP. They also adapted a rover gear splitter overdrive unit behind the 700R4 to give us 12 forward and 3 reverse gears. The package should produce mpg ratings in the high 20's unloaded, low 20's loaded. Unfortunately my plan of having the truck rated to tow 14K wont work as the rover gear splitter only rates to 11,500.
Were now obligated to give the shops in Ca. time to test the truck after it gets on the road so were looking at a spring delivery in Tx.
We had a suspension specialist look at the suspension and he made a few changes.
He replaced the ball joints with longtravel ball joints and tubed "A" arms used on Pre runner trucks to give the front end a little more adjustment. Now when the front suspension is layed down the front tires stay flat.
He also added CV joints to both ends of the driveshaft.
Interior is still a problem, some previously made panels will have to be refitted and the seat covers need to be refitted after the frames were shortened.
I'm sure I'll be happy wth the truck when it's finished but at this point I'm not to enthused, all I wanted was a nice looking truck to haul things around with and the project's gotten a little out of hand.
Since I originally posted this subject has come even closer to me, on Jully 21st my mom lost her battle with cancer and a host of other complications/side affects.
What really bothers me the most is she was diagnosed within days of my fathers July 2007 death of cancer. She had taken care of my father faithfully since his cancer diagnosys, there were many things she wanted to see and do but she put them all on hold to care for him while he was sick, much as she did when us 9 children were young.
In 1997 my father was diagnosed and given no more than 6 months to live, he beat the diagnosis by 9.5 yrs, but it was a long struggle that saw over 30 major surgerys and lots of hospital time. In the end he became addicted to pain killers, sadly that was his major concern (being a hipacrit) before he died, the fact he was addicted to pain killers and he had argued many times with my brother over drug addiction.
Mom selflessly took care of him at home until a few days before he passed away, then a day after the funeral was diagnosed herself.
She struggled with her health for 2 years never getting better just slowly dying from the disease. On July 19th she asked my sister to take her to the hospital so she could be entered into a Hospice program because she wasnt going to fight the disease anymore, we had all been helping to care for her at my sisters home and originally her wish was to pass away at home, but evidently she changed her mind at some point. She lasted in the Hospice 2 days.
My thanks go out to the North Las Vegas Hospice center for taking care of my mom in her last days. As standard practice they had a nurse posted in her room around the clock in her final days so she wouldnt be alone when she passed. Unfortunately none of us were at the hospital when she passed, we were all on our way to Las Vegas as we knew when my mom made up her mind to do something it would get done soon.
Nobody gets out of this deal alive. I think everyone should have the right to choose how and when they die. We make choices everyday, some good some bad. Just because I think someone else should "hang in there" doesn't mean they have to. It's not my place to decide for them.
As I get older I've watched more of my friends and family make that journey. Some die quietly with peace and dignity and others die excruciating deaths. Currently I have a dear friend who is in home hospice waiting to make the passage. Zoned out on morphine waiting for death to come knocking. It's been 4 months of tortuous trials since complications after a heart bypass, and 8 days at home waiting for the good Lord to take her. If she could have, she would have jumped from that overpass too.
Recently a distinguished orchestral conductor Sir Edward Downes, 85, and his 74-year-old wife Joan chose assisted suicide at the Dignitas suicide clinic in Zurich.
His wife was terminal, while he was ill but not suffering any life threatening illness. At 85 he did not want to live a life without his beloved. His life, his choice.