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I AM RESTORING A 65 GTO buy my self Trying to put it back according to the PHS documents ' I normally do big Pontiac's .
can some one tell me if the firewall resistor block belongs on this car? also why there is a flasher location on the fuse box Thanks
 

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I believe the ignition has a resistor wire setup in the harness under the dash so that you get a full 12 volts while cranking and then it drops the voltage down in the run position so the points last longer. I'm sure someone will chime in if they know for sure.

I only had one flasher location in my 64 GTO and it's for the blinkers. Do you have two?
 

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Discussion Starter #23
So got the call today from the machine shop and he told me the bock was stock, has never rebuilt, not cracked or damaged and is rebuildable. Went down at lunch to look at it.

He seems to know what he is talking about, but there was 1 thing I was not in agreement with him one and that was with the heads. He said they looked pretty good and he doesn’t seem to think they need to have hardened seats. I am worried what will happen to the heads with todays gas. And I plan to put 3-5k miles on the car a year. Use high octane gas, occasionally I guess I can add lead to the fuel.

Other than that we were both surprised on the internals of the engine. He said crank looks great, not a lot of scoring on cylinder walls, but still need to go 30 over. I was not thrilled about this but he said those odd sizes make the cost jump. And 30 was safe, fast and common. I was hoping to just hone it and use forged pistons because I understand they are slightly larger. But he recommended not to, said it would not be worth the extra cost.

I think 30 over will make the block like a 402. He said I can use the original cam with a weld build up and grind, but it would be better to just buy a newer one with a little performance edge to it.

Other than that he thinks he will be done in 2 weeks.

He has 2 shops. One in the front and 1 in the rear. The front one is kept much nicer The rear one is more messy and dis-organized. But From what I have seen thus far he does good work. I am really hoping this is not a figment of sunshine and rainbows. I might have found a guy to do good work at a reasonable cost. Fingers crossed indicated hope and luck. I just want the guy to keep doing what he is doing.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Yeah those were pictures he took right after disassembly. When I got there the parts had been hot tanked and looked not brand new but pretty close.

In talking to this guy he doesn't seem to be into performance modifications. He seems to be a purist. We talked a bit and he went into changing 1 thing to increase performance has all sorts of un-intended consequences. He flat out told me he is not really a guy you want to got to for performance because there is a lot more to it than just bolting crap on. I kinda liked that about the guy. He was pretty clear what he could and wanted to do. told me why he did not want to do anything else but the more stock traditional things. I feel really good about this guy...... But I felt really good about turning down a job at Google in Dec of 1999 to take a job at Compaq instead......... Had I done that I would not have to be pinching the wallet to get this done so the wife doesn't get upset we cant vacation this year.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Man I had a horrible day. So machine shop told me there is an issue with the block.

Apparently the block was rebuilt 1 time prior. It was bored 10 over and then the stock pistons were used with larger rings.

That in itself was not the bad news. The bad news was he was boring the last cylinder out and saw a larger piece of metal fall out. When he looked into the cylinder he saw this hole in the cylinder wall. Then he looked at the number 7 cylinder and noticed there was a soft spot in the wall. It turns out the water vessels are pretty bad and have lots of rust.

So he basically told me he knows the block is original to the car but it would be cheaper to just get a new block. But this is the correct block to the car. He said he can sleeve the cylinder but he thinks they all need to be done.

So he said 1,100 to sleeve all 8. He said that the sleeve will allow me to go back to standard.

He also said that sleeved blocks are better for high performance engines because they are a lot stronger.

I was really upset about it but what else can I do. I do have another 79J block I can use but it is not original to the car.

I told him to give me a day ...thinking I would solicit advice on the forum. Brother in Law said to just sleeve it. That the block would be every bit as good if not better that stock.
 

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Ouch! My machinist gets $200 a sleeve as I thought my 455 was going to need some. Turned out OK, and didn't need any. Good thing it showed up now and not 500 miles after the rebuild.

Sleeves are harder material and more rigid, thus racers do like to install them to improve the bore sealing as they won't distort like cast. Not knowing how rigid the cylinders at the base (might the bottom of the cylinders be rotted away too?), I think I would pour some "hard-block" into the lower water jackets of the block to keep things rigid and add additional support to the new sleeves at their base if I went with sleeving the block.

The only problem I would be concerned about is the rest of the block you cannot see. You can put new sleeves in, but will you find yourself with a hole blowing out on the outside of the engine somewhere on the water jacket because the rust ate a thin spot somewhere? I think this is where a complete and thorough sonic testing of the block would be needed to check key wall thickness.

I would also find a service or means to first remove all the scaley and heavy rust deposits inside the block before I did anything, then sonic test it looking for any thin spots that might cause trouble later on.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
So I will give him a call tomorrow and ask him about sonic testing. He did say the block was still workable. It is just so disapointeing that this thing is this bad. It just comes from a part of the country that is rough on cars and then it just was not stored properly.

I still feel ok as long as nothing else pops up. All in on the engine if it stays steady I will still come in under the next closest quote rebuild it.

but man 1100 hurts. I was going to get all new glass and it looks like that will not happen now.
 

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So I will give him a call tomorrow and ask him about sonic testing. He did say the block was still workable. It is just so disapointeing that this thing is this bad. It just comes from a part of the country that is rough on cars and then it just was not stored properly.

I still feel ok as long as nothing else pops up. All in on the engine if it stays steady I will still come in under the next closest quote rebuild it.

but man 1100 hurts. I was going to get all new glass and it looks like that will not happen now.
Just ask a lot of questions and trust your machinist as he is the guy who will be replacing it if things go sour - so if he is confident, then go with it.

My 455 which had severe pitting and was thought to need a few sleeves to save it, didn't need any at .060". I had to question the .060" over because that is taking it out quite a bit once you start reading the internet about boring it .060" over. Machinist told me no problem at .060" over on the 455.

Then there were a few small discolored spots in 2 of the cylinders that looked like stains and kinda looked rusty to me under the newly honed cylinders. I was not comfortable with what I saw and had to know what it was. He told me that they were indeed stains/discoloration in the metal from the rust. I asked him if I should be concerned. He said, no that the metal was just fine, just simply stained - a metal reaction. Again I asked him if maybe a sleeve should be installed in the 2 cylinders just to make sure I didn't have any future problems. Again, he assured me that everything was ok and he has had other older blocks that were in just as poor a condition but needed to be saved for a restoration and the straining of the metal can happen when cylinders are badly rusted.

I did a web search, and sure enough, I did find a few blogs which confirmed what he told me, just stains/discoloration in the metal and nothing more. So I just have to trust him on it because he has been rebuilding engines of all kinds for 40 years and he knows his trade.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Half the block is sleeved

Went by the machine shop to see how far along he is. He has 4 of the 8 cylinders sleeved and I snapped these as I never had a block sleeved before and was not really sure what went into it.

So he told me 1100 to sleeve the whole thing, then this morning told me the sleeves for this thing were expensive and I needed to pony up the cost of the sleeves. I looked around and it appears that the sleeves really are somewhat generic and not really special to any one application. I know it is a lot of work and everything else he has been telling me is correct. I think he might have underbid the job and realized he is working for next to nothing. So I dont mind, but man if you dont keep an eye on these things it can easily spiral out of control.

At first I was really bummed that it had to be sleeved but everything I am reading indicates that sleeved blocks are actually better than the stock ones. As long as the sleeve doesn't move. He put a lock tight product on before pressing the sleeves in. On the number 8 cylinder the rust in the water jacket completely ate through a portion of the walls. But he still said, no problem. The sleeve will more than take care of it.

So I am guessing this block is 2 weeks from being finished. Transmission should be done this Friday.

The body and frame are still at media blasting and they are waiting for the weather to clear before they bring it back to the shop. The shop is 50 miles from my house and the traffic is terrible in the SF Bay Area so getting out there during the week is a chore. I have been making the weekly pilgrimage out every Saturday morning. So hopefully we will see the body and frame completely naked this weekend.

So this is my first actual restore of any note. I find that it is costing a lot more than I thought and that it actually consumes a large portion of my day. I think I just picked a tough car. Both in condition and parts availability. Camaros are certainly easier. The damn bumper for a 64 is like 800 dollars. A Camero one is like 60 bucks. It also has been challenging because I am trying to make the restore as close to GTOAA standards, but the next 1k outlay might change that.

The other thing is I have been selling my spare parts for more than reasonable costs. But anytime I buy something for this thing I feel like I am getting gouged on price.

I have a set of fenders and doors I am selling and others are asking 2 to 3 times what I am for worse condition parts. I have also flat out refused to sell to some people who I know are just flipping this stuff. I really want this to go to people who need it, not trying to make a buck. But man it is hurting me in the wallet. On eBay right now a guy is selling 1 fender for 3K. That is totally absurd.
 

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Yeah, I hear ya on prices on used parts for these cars, my 73 restore is going to be very expensive, I’m not sure if I can swing it, Everyday I walk out to my small shop and look at the car I have convince myself it can be done, lol. Your lot further in your restore than I am, your going to love your finished car, it’s looking great.
 

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Discussion Starter #34 (Edited)
Stopped by machine shop this AM. Guy told me he has all the sleeves in and that when they pressed in they had a slight distortion. He said they have to go .030 over to be perfect. So After all that I am back in the same spot as I was once I started but lighter on my wallet.

He told me he should have it polished up and ready to reassemble for next week
 

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Discussion Starter #35


Man it never ends. 1 quarter cut out. there is a piece that is a drop down filler not part of a trunk pan kit. Luckily there only like 200 a set. Going to need 2 floor braces as well.

This car better be worth it. This is a lot more than I had bargained for.
 

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Tony it’s looking good what you have got at this point. It will pay off at the end, your going have practically a new 1964 GTO when completed, I realize one of the biggest thing is keeping that focus to see it to the end as long as it doesn’t put one in financial issues, I lost that focus and threw in the towel on my 73, but with mine the parts just are not as available as some of these earlier Pontiacs, and used, salvageable parts from Franks Pontiacs or CTC Auto Ranch or even Desert Valley, the shipping was more than the price of the part. Oops, sorry got distracted, your build is looking great and we all looking forward to see your project finished !!
 

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Discussion Starter #37
Machine shop called me today and told me the bottom end was all done. Then He told me there was an issue with the heads. I went to the shop and was extremely surprised how nice the heads came out after being cleaned. But he said that the seats would need to be hardened and that the intake channels appear to have been polished and cut. He did not think he could put new seats into them because there was not enough room. So when I got there he said he could do it a little differently. He was going to install a seat for a 400 on the intake first. Then after it was installed be would do the exhaust seat and slightly machine into the seat for the intake. So it would have sort of a slight notch. He told me 350 for each head. I have another set of heads for it but he think those were worked on as well and might take more work to finish up. So now this thing is like 90% over budget on engine alone. I was supposed to get out of it for under 3k. I am now at 4700. Then he told me there was a grove in the shaft of the harmonic balancer. He said it would be ok for a while but would eventually start to leak. So I think I need to get a new one as well. Thats another 200.

So I need water pump, oil filter housing, Engine mounts, starter, alternator, powersteering pump, fuel pump, a carb rebuild and I am thinking a few of the brackets and pulley for the PS pump.

I was going to ask the forum on if this grove in the harmoic balancer was an issue but why even chance it since the part is like 180 dollars. I feel stooopid for even bring it up.


I tell you what, knowing what I know now, I would be wary of anyone trying to sell you a number matching car with a fresh of frame restore for less than 50K. There is just no way they could do it correctly unless they cut a lot of corners. I feel I have been extremely cost aware and savey and it will still run me into the high 40's or low 50's to finish it.


IMG_0402.jpg IMG_0403.jpg IMG_0404.jpg IMG_0409.jpg IMG_0408.jpg
 

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Looks like good progress though.
I agree with the budget figure. I am pretty far into a frame off ony 68 and have spent the same as you..... right about $50k and I am doing most all my own work. Hired services are media blasting, powder coat chassis parts, epoxy coat body parts and engine machine work. Everything else is my own labor. I don't see any possible way to do a complete frame off for any less.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
 

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You should replace the balancer anyway rather than take a chance on something that old. A quick cheap fix is a sleeve that goes over the hub. Have used them before without problem.

$350 per head ($700) is not a bad price if it includes all bronze valve guides, new stainless steel valves, seat inserts, 3-angle valve job, valve seals, springs, split locks, & retainers, and assembly.

Budgets are ONLY hopes that you have which your car does not. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #40
The only thing I am not getting is new valves. He is reusing the old ones. But they looked really good after he cleaned them. I mentioned the sleeve for the balancer and he said they tend to expand and ruin the seal after time. I looked the sleeves up and they are like 20 dollars but I think the shaft has to be machined down. Prob another 20 there. So I will probably just get a new one. 180 from opgi is not horrible. I will just have to skip a few meals or something.
 
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