1966 GTO convertible frame off resto
First time poster and thought I would take a moment and share the details of my GTO frame off restoration. I have a 66í GTO convertible thatís been in the family since almost day 1. The car came off the showroom floor in Missoula, MT. Itís the car my parents drove off in when they got married and that my wife and I were driven off in when we got married (we had a little too much fun to drive ourselves). The car trade hands within the family over the years and my grandfather gave me the car when I was about 17 and I have had it ever since. The car is pretty much original except for the motor (it had rebuilt core swaps back in the 70s and 80s). It was originally a 4 bbl, 389 w/ 4 speed. No power steering, power brakes or AC.
The car had made numerous trips from the east coast to the west coast. When my dad got out of the Air Force, they drove from California to Columbia, SC pulling a trailer carrying my dadís 1955 C-gas Chevy and all their possessions stuffed in both cars.
About 2 years ago I decided to tear the car back down to frame. It didnít have any major visible rust, but I figured it had some somewhere and would be a good time to address any small issues before they became bigger issues. Iím glad I started it when I did.
I stripped the car completely down, every nut and bolt. I stripped the frame down completely, blasted it to bare metal and painted it. Since the car was not a numbers matching car, I decided to update the suspension with a CPP stage IV pro touring kit. We rebuilt the reared with new position unit and ring gear and pinion. Double adjustable coil overs on all 4 corners, 4 wheel disc brakes, all tubular a-arms and trailing arms, front and rear sway bars, etc. I ran all new stainless brake lines and (2) 3/8Ē stainless fuel lines (That project was easier said than done). Frame/suspension done expect wheels and tires.
The body was sent to media blasting. This is where she showed her secrets. Nothing too bad, biggest repair was new left 3rd trunk floor replaced, both rear lower quarter patches, and pin holes here and there along the rockers. Then the body was primered and seam sealed. Had the blower motor/heater core hole on the firewall welded up. I plan to install aftermarket AC, hard to enjoy the car May - September in Texas w/o AC.
My dad and I had built the 428 motor several years before I began the tear down process, so I didnít have much to do here. Thourghly cleaned it, touched up the paint. The motor is probably a little over cammed but it has a great lope at an idle. Replaced the rocker arms with some roller tipped rockers and installed 3/8Ēspacers under the valve covers. Wanted the engine to have a cleaner look, so replaced the plug wires and used a wiring loom to keep everything neat and organized. My intent is to replace the old AFB with a Holley sniper efi, hence the 2 fuel lines. Also looking at converting to a serpentine belt system. We also tore the 4 speed down, replaced the reverse gear, all new seals and gaskets.
Body is now back on the frame. This past weekend we put the hydraulic clutch kit in the tranny and then put the motor and tranny back in the car. The car is headed to paint and body this Thursday. I opted to do it this way so I donít run the risk of scratching any paint putting the motor and trans in later. Currently the front clip is off the car, which made it a fairly easy install, excluding getting a few header bolts started.
I have pics and will try to get some posted this week.