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Discussion Starter #1
Going to document the restoration of this car I have. Will include all the data, vendors I used and prices so others can have a estimate of what is involved.

1964 GTO Convertible, Silvermist Gray, Black Interior, 4 Barrel Carb, 2 Speed Auto, Power Top.
Car trunk pan is rusted.
Hood has a dent right at the apex.
Front bumper dented and will need to be straightened and re-chromed.
Wire harness was melted under dash, traced it back and it is the resistance wire to distributor that melted and fused the other wires together.

Dropped 1 set of 716 heads off on 7/14 to American Engine Exchange in Oakland. Heads cleaned magafluxed, Valve seats were done and new valves and springs installed. My cost was 500.00 Took about 2 weeks for me to get them back.

Dropped the 79J block off this morning. Motor looks to have been previously honed and assembled, but I am not sure how well it was done so American Engine Exchange is going to go through the block and put it together, torque it correctly and test run it. Stock Cam and crank. STD piston and bore size there are no sleeves in the block and it appears to be bone stock. Dont know about the bearings yet. My valley pan and intake manifold will be reused. They both need media blasting. 1 spot on pan looks worse and surface rust might be working its way down. He said it looked ok and after media blast he will know for sure. Not sure if the timing chain cover will be usable. Looks pitted. Dont know the final cost on this yet.

Ordered a full wire harness from American Auto Wire in New Jersey. Headlight, engine, main cabin, and rear harness for 870.00 This is the oem version with the glass fuses. The rear light harness is different on convertibles. Connected by a flat ribbon to harness. It does not appear this ribbon is reproduced.

Located new old stock acdelco remy voltage regulator for 70.00, Horn relay on fender was expensive at 120.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I am slightly worried about the pump gas I will use and this new engine build. I am told that using 91 octane gas I should attempt to shoot for 9:1 to 9.5 to 1 compression otherwise the car will just be a dog. Does anyone know what I should be shooting for? I am running the 1964 stock 716 heads. I think stock they offer 72cc. With the machining that has been done I am guessing they might be at 70 or 71cc. Standard bore and flat top pistons with the relief for the valves. The chart I used puts this at like 9.6 to 1 for 70cc and 9.4 to 1 for 71cc. What should I shoot for? I dont know the deck height or the size of the gasket yet.

Also was wondering about replacing the cam. Nothing to lavish. Just something to give it a little more. I have no idea on this and was hoping to get a suggestion or advice

Also decided not to use the stock distributor. Thinking about the Pertronix D120701 plug and play. I dont want to mount a bunch of extra stuff in the engine bay.
 

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If you do a search using the RED "Search" feature of this forum you should be able to find your answer. This has been covered many times as well as cam choice. 9 -to-1 is probably your safest bet on compression for a street engine. However, the key is dynamic compression, as opposed to static compression. Quench area is also important.

Do a little searching on the forums, read a bunch of the posts, and you should get a better idea on building your engine for pump friendly gas. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Ok my restoration has stalled a bit. But last weekend we got to the wiring. A mouse got into the car while it was in storage and made a meal of the harness. Blessing in disguise because the loom was hacked up pretty bad in the engine and in the back.

So I bought an American Auto Wire oem harness and I was a little pissed on the price but I tell you it was well worth it. The harness fits like a glove. The leads end right were they are supposed to, the lengths are just right and the colors match exactly what was there before. What it did not come with and from the price it well should have was the flat wire that runs from the fuse box to the rear of the car, the horn wire that goes to the second horn and the courtesy light wire. Also was missing the wire for the factory tach.

Other than that Extremely happy and it looks spot on. My switches are ok and I am not sure if I will replace them or not but the light switch is like 54 dollars. Also something that was odd to me was the emergency flasher. Mine is right under the steering column and is not hooked up. The wires were just tucked under. But I would not know where to hook them up because the old or new harness did not appear to be set up for it. I will have to research it and figure out where they tap or splice in.


I am sure it is something I did but right now the instrument panel lights do not come on when the head lights are turned on. And the horn no longer works. But it was pretty hot out here and I was getting a little tired at the end of the day so I will have to revisit it. The pins in the door were to far in and would not turn the courtesy light off so I have to back them off a bit to make contact. Luckily new ones are only like 4 dollars to I will replace those.

But my initial view of the Auto wire harness is really positive. It was my first attempt at replacement and I am sure I just missed a few things.

Also there are 2 different types of bulbs in the panel. 57 and 1895. It appears the 57 and 1895 bulbs are both 14 volts but the 1895 are .3 watts higher. They appear to go to illumination and the 57 are for dummy lights.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So I have 2 of these things. I shelved the car that still runs and drives and have opted to restore the basket case first.

In a separate thread I indicated what will be done to the car.

Attached are some pictures of the before. The car is nearly disassembled. What I find mind blowing is this car was parked in 1976. The damage that has been done was from 12 years on the road on the east coast, and from being parked in an actual barn from 1976 to 2017.

In retrospect I probably should have passed on the car. But it is 100% numbers matching, Right down to the shocks. That is what drew me to the car.
 

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I think most of us have been in that situation where we see the potential and not all that is hidden. Once the project is closer scrutinized, wish we would've passed on the purchase. Good luck on a find that has true potential in the end.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
No way around it. The body mounts and bolts were rusted together to the body. Had to cut them apart. Saving grace is the pans and floors were getting replaced anyway.

Does anyone know about the body bushings? It there a alternative to the rubber ones?

This is going to be a lot more work and money than I initially suspected. On paper I am 4k over the 3K I was already over and told my wife about. At this point I will just keep the damn thing when I am done and be buried in it along with my dog.

Good news is the engine is being rebuilt with in my budget. Only enhancement from stock will be a slightly better cam, better rings, oil and fuel pumps.
 

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I am going with, and have installed on my '68 Lemans, the PST Polygraphite body bushings. They are graphite impregnated to supposedly eliminate the "squeaking" you can get from polyurethane bushings as the frame/body moves/twists. I recall I only got the bushings and then purchased the metal inserts/bolts as a kit and added these to the bushings.

The polygraphite/polyurethane bushings will also stiffen up the body-to-frame movement due to less flex as found in the original rubber mounts - which is also said to improve handling having less flexing of the frame. It is said that the rubber mounts absorb more road noise that gets transferred from the suspension to the frame/body. Can't support or deny any of these claims and one person's noise may not be what another hears or feels.

The PST kit is for the convertible which has the additional body mount under the door. I don't think it includes the radiator support bushings? You also need to buy your own bolts locally or a bolt kit. https://p-s-t.com/i-23159869-polygraphite-body-mount-kit.html# Bolt kit: https://www.carid.com/restoparts/subframe-to-body-bolt-kit-mpn-515mh.html?singleid=97596087&url=91033913

You can buy a complete urethane bushing kit for the convertible that includes the radiator support bushings, and it comes with bolts. Appears that the bushings have the metal inserts already installed. Overall, the better deal - just not sure about the "squeaks" they claim to produce. https://www.opgi.com/gto/1965/chassis-suspension/bushings-mounts/SB515K/
 

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Discussion Starter #12
You know what the crap of it was. The last time the car was on the road being driven was 1976. So all this damage came from only 12 winters in North East.
 

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You know what the crap of it was. The last time the car was on the road being driven was 1976. So all this damage came from only 12 winters in North East.
Yep, you don't have to tell me. The salt on the roads eats away at the cars - fender wells, lower fenders, then the trunk, and eventually the frame and floors. It is sometimes hard for people who did not get this wonderful experience to understand how often the bodies rotted away and the engine/trans was still in great shape - which was why you could get a good junkyard engine for $150 and drop it into the car you blew the engine up in. Also why the original engine was very seldom rebuilt and just junked at those prices.

Now if you were religious about washing the car & its underbody after a good salting of the roads, your car had a better chance of survival. Its what my dad did to preserve the '73 Plymouth (along with the factory undercoating) which my brother now owns. Oh, its got its share of rot, but it has been minimized and the car is still presentable and original. The cars that held up the best were those that were garage kept and really did not get out in the snow to much. But generally, by 10-12 years old, the car was a rust bucket and got junked.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I just bought the Polygraphite body bushings. I think it will make for a better ride.

Now lets see what pops up next
 

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So I am dropping the 2 speed auto transmission off tomorrow morning to get it rebuilt. I was quoted 1300 for a complete rebuild.

The case is extremely dirty. I mean really covered in oily dirt. What I wanted to know is should I have the guy paint the exterior of transmission a glossy grey or just have him clean it as best as he can and leave it. The car is going to be a frame off restoration and going to be pretty darn close to a concourse restoration. I know they were not painted from the factory. But the rest of the car is going to look so nice. I am not sure just a media blast is going to work because it will leave the case rough and that will attract dirt. Maybe a media blast and then a clear coat of paint?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Car is finally split. Looks like a previous hack job on floor repair. Extremely dirty and oily. So far nothing we did not expect on the body.

Frame was a little of a different story. It looks real rough but there are no soft spots. Just real dirty and oily. One of the trailing arms was bent and I think it will have to be replaced.
 

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I’m in the same boat, so don’t feel alone, I traded for a 1973 GTO and after I got it home after a in the dark dealing and now I have daylight I’m finding the really ruff areas of the car, I also live in a state that gets heavy snow and salt on the roadways. Your moving right along on your GTO restoration, I hope it goes well for you, I had to talk it out with one of the members here on the forum, I started to feel that I took on more than I should have due to the fact that there isn’t a lot of stuff available for the 73 and what I have found they want more than what pockets can offer, lol, So, keep up your great work and moving forward, it will reward you in the end.
 

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Attached are some pictures of the frame. The area under the engine was just caked on with grease dirt and oil. The whole front suspension and steering is going to need to be redone. The frame looks ok. No soft spots. But I can tell if it doesn't get done now it will need to be replaced soon.

The lat picture of is of this charger the body shop just finished. It looked awesome and looked like black glass.
 

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