Big Bumper Makeover: The Quest for Creature Comforts

Discussion in 'Project Progress' started by Chairwriter, Nov 15, 2020.

  1. Chairwriter

    Chairwriter New Member

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    I have been a member here for some time but have not posted anything in probably a couple of years, if not longer. Some projects just go faster than others, right?

    The good news is that my project, a 1975 base model (350, auto, a/c, front discs, standard interior) should be getting back on track soon. It's presently at a shop awaiting a heart transplant. The SBC that came in the car (not the original engine) when I bought it in 2006 was not rebuilt properly and is barely developing oil pressure (it's not the oil pump). Rather than a rebuild, I'm opting for a crate motor swap.

    The car is lowered 2" with new suspension and steering components. The factory front discs have been upgraded and the stock transmission was replaced with a 700R4. Body work includes tucked and sectioned front and rear bumpers with a chrome finish, a Z-28 type hood, a billet grille, and halo daytime running lights. The interior is still gutted. That will be the last stage after the engine is replaced.

    I'm disabled and use a lightweight manual wheelchair for mobility. My chair folds compactly and I'm able to transfer in and out of 2-door coupes with little trouble. I drive with hand controls and love the freedom of driving. I've owned some fun muscle cars over the decades (I'm, 61) and I enjoy modifying them for reliability, comfort, and safety. I'm not afraid to drive them on extended trips. It's a real pleasure to take an older car on a bucket list road trip. For example, several years ago I drove my '67 Mustang convertible on a 45-day-journey across the USA and back--nearly 11,000 miles with no major issues. The following year, I drove it from Florida to Maine and back, again no significant issues.

    I'd like to be able to do the same with the Camaro. It has factory a/c and I've added power windows for convenience. The interior will be thoroughly soundproofed with Dynamat-type underlayment, the goal being to occasionally enjoy some quality music or even some relative quiet during a long drive.

    Have any of you been successful with getting a fairly quiet ride in a 2nd generation F-body with the windows up? We're spoiled nowadays by the near-absence of wind noise in newer vehicles, and I'm wondering if the wind is going to sound like a banshee when I'm doing 70 or 80 in the Camaro. Is there a particular label for weatherstrip and window seals that you recommend?

    Enjoy the photos and let me know of your ideas/recommendations. Thanks. Driveway shot 3jpg.jpg Driveway shot 5.jpg Garage shot 3.jpg Garage shot 4.jpg Garage shot 5.jpg
     
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  2. roadrace2

    roadrace2 Veteran Member

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    Beautiful! Looks like a great build! What crate engine did you go with?
     
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  3. Chairwriter

    Chairwriter New Member

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    Thank you! I haven't pulled the trigger yet. I have to decide: a classic carbureted 350 or a 383 stroker or maybe an LS? It will have to dovetail with my main goal of cruising and road trips. Having grown up in the 60s and 70s I'm still appreciative of fuel mileage, lol.
     
  4. 8pack

    8pack Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Take a seriuous look at the EFI systems of today like the Sniper. By the time you get a good Carb, the associated tuning parts etc. you are more than 1/2 the cost of a good EFI system. They can't be beat for reliability, consistency, and once you figure it, out ease of tuning. The modern car peace of mind of turn the key and its starts instantly is worth it alone. I imagine climbing under the hood to adjust a carb on the road can be somewhat challenging for you....hook up a computer from the driver's seat seems much more convenient.

    That said, If you are interested in a Holley Avenger with less than 1500 miles on it let me know. Steep Friends, Family and NastyZ28 member discounts available!

    Sweet build!!
     
  5. Chairwriter

    Chairwriter New Member

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    Great suggestion and I will definitely look into the Sniper. The benefits sound really worthwhile.
     
  6. branbell

    branbell Veteran Member

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    Hey 8pack - have you used that wheel fitment tool in your signature?

    Looking to get some measurements for my ride but looking for an easy to use tool.
     
  7. 8pack

    8pack Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Yes I have. I would be happy to send it to if you like. PM me.
     
  8. ULTM8Z

    ULTM8Z Veteran Member

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    Also an overdrive transmission is a must for long distance crusing.
     
  9. Chairwriter

    Chairwriter New Member

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    Right! The car already has a 700R4 installed. Makes a big difference.
     
  10. branbell

    branbell Veteran Member

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    As an owner to a 76 Camaro - I appreciate your big bumper ride!

    Beautiful car for sure.

    I would definitely go with an LS for the reliability reasons.
     
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