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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering if you guys could help out a Pontiac newbie and his son. Short history…

My son (16) has wanted a 69 GTO for a while, kind of like I wanted a 68 Charger when I was 14. We finally found one, bought with his own money. It’s a standard 69, came from factory with a WT 350 HP 4 speed M20. Unfortunately, the original motor and trans are no longer in the car. What’s in its place is a W72 from a ’79 T/A with 6X-4 (whopping 220 HP stock, 8:1 CR stock) heads along with a Saginaw 4-speed. We have no idea if the motor has had any work done to it, though it does run pretty well from what I can tell. It has an Edelbrock Performer RPM intake manifold with a 750 cfm Edelbrock carb, and Hooker headers.

Now we need to sort out all sorts of stuff, starting with getting it street legal.

First thing we needed to do was to replace the engine harness, as it was hacked and literally held together with tape, a fire waiting to happen. We ordered a standard internal regulator harness from Performance Years, but I’m thinking that may be a problem, since the battery and starter wires run down the left side of the engine to the starter, way too close to the headers for my comfort level.

Question 1 - Would the Internal Regulator/RA harness work better, since it seems to run from the front of the engine to the starter (I think)? We’re hoping it will clear the headers and not melt any wires.

Question 2 - Would I be able to use 69 RA III exhaust manifolds with the 6X-4 heads? According to Wallace Racing, it should work. I’m thinking 9797072 and 9791637, but I’m sure not certain. I’m sure we’ll lose some ponies switching to manifolds, but I can live with it. Not so sure about my son, though.

Question 3 – want’s the best Pontiac repair manual out there?

Anybody got a great deal on a Muncie? ;)

BTW, yeah, I did get my Charger. Not till I was 21 or so, but I did get it. God I loved that car. Now it’s the kid’s turn.
We’ll probably be asking lots more questions in the coming months, and hopefully we keep the dumb questions to a minimum.

Thanks in advance for any assistance.
Dan
 

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welcome to the forum guys....

The wires should run through a heat shield tube that mounts to the rear header bolt and holds them away from the tube, the originals had an asbestos sleeve. The RA manifolds are as good as headers for flow and a better fit. 1964-74 GTO restoration guide is a must, for the most part the a-bodies are pretty simple and easy to work on. Most any info you need can be had on the web with a Google search or right here. Dive in and enjoy....79' motor will be good training wheels while you build a period correct 400+HP Pontiac torque monster. Your son has very good taste, the 69' was car of the year and the first year the "Judge" option was offered, and is considered by many the quintessential GTO as the performance and sales fell off after 70'. Here is one i looked at recently....does not look like much but it has a great pedigree and build number 00040 which might make it one of the very first Judges.
 

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Goodluck and don't you worry about the engine... there are plenty out there to pickup at reasonable prices. Definitely rebuild what you buy if you can.
 

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I agree 100% on the comment regarding RA manifolds vs. headers on a daily driver. The ONLY headers I have ever appreciated were an over-the-engine style on a racing chasis, because there was absolutely nothing in the way of the headers!

Read an article on dyno testing, and a 425hp pontiac was only losing 10hp with RA manifolds as long as the correct lobe seperation was used on the cam.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks all, for the replies. I'm leaning heavily toward the RA harness, since it will be correct when we get the manifolds, and I think it should be safer with the headers. Any thoughts on the compatibility of the specific manifolds I mentioned with the 6X-4 heads?

Any one have any good pictures of the battery/starter cable routing? The illustrations in the books we have aren't so great, to say the least.

We already have all the standard books (Restoration, Fischer Body, Assembly manual, etc.). I was thinking a good ole repair manual, such as Haynes or Chilton's.

Eric,
We're out east, just north or riverhead. 45 minute ride (at least for me).
 

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get the factory service manual. the RA wiring will require a tube that mounts onto the motor mount for the starter wiring. not that easy to install. get the RA prebent head pipes when you order the manifolds. the bends are better than the muffler shop can do. the RA manifolds will fit the heads if yours have both outside end bolts, which if you have headers, than yours does.
 
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