6/1/2004 -- Got the "new" spoiler off the old trunk lid, and cleaned up the new bumpers and spoiler parts. Just a good pressure wash to knock off the loose rust. Tried to mount the spoiler side "wings" and found that the holes all line up perfectly. There was a smaller piece that fit on the bottom, under the smaller bumper. No hole was found that alligned to the top of this, which is shared with the lowest bolt of the larger upper piece. When I marked it to drill, I found that the hole was in the steel already, just filled in with a rubber putty before they originally painted it. Hopefully, I will be able to find mounting holes for most of the bumper brackets, similarly. The picture below shows how much "spoil" the spoiler will give me when it is all put together. That should help keep the rear end on the ground during races...right...
6/15/2004 -- Finally got a chance to start installing the rear bumper. Had to buy a few bolts and washers. Drill a couple of holes. Moved the hoses for the air shocks so they wouldn't get cinched. May have to ream out the hole a bit more and put in a rubber grommet. I will just have to keep an eye on the wear. Same for the wire to the license plate light.
sub w/tax = 13.88
6/21/2004 -- Polished up the rear bumper. Most of the surface rust came right off. Not show-room quality, but it will suffice until I get rechromed. Went to Lake Hardware for some sort of drilling device. Found what looks like a door-knob drill, which I already have, but this was called "bi-metallic" and made to go through metal. Bought one at 1" dia and the fitting that lets me hook it up to a drill or pencil grinder. The pencil grinder was too fast for the thing to catch the metal, so did it at much lower speed drill. Measured the hole spacing by putting the spoiler onto the rear of the trunk lid and rolling it back and forth to leave little scratches in the primer. Then took it all off and measured and found that I was only off by 1/16" on the two inner holes (of four). Punched, pilot drilled, and used the bi-metallic to cut through the trunk lid...took about 15 or 20 seconds per hole. I worried that this was going too well and too easy...but the spoiler fit in very nice and snug, and was perfectly centered when applied. Added some silicone caulk to the holes and around the entire spoier assembly (minus the four grooves at the bottom to let out any water that might find its way under the spoiler). Seems nice and tight, and looks good, except for the three different colors of paint.
sub w/tax = 17.08
If you look closely, you might see some black rubber buildup on the rear fenders. Apparently, when I was burning out at the track, both wheels were spinning at least some of the time, since I can take a handfull of melted rubber off the fenders with a single swipe of my hand...from both fenders. I guess that 3rd run just had one tire breaking loose for some odd reason, but I otherwise have a half-decent limited-slip. Read about some guys putting full posi-trac on and enjoying it except for turns. They report that the wheels bounce around sharp turns when they don't slip. If I can get my hands on a second rearend, I might do the welding thing to lock the rearend up, just for races. Try it out, at least.
6/26/2004 -- Got under the car starting last night, attempting to put on the front bumper. Succeeded in getting the lower body panel on. Most (4 of 6) of the holes lined right up. The two forward holes need to be drilled, or not. The panel seems to be sturdy and fairly straight, so I may just leave the 4 bolts only. Hit Lake Hardware a couple times this morning to replace the bolt and nuts for the front bumper. Again, the bolt hole allignment was challenging. I could get all six to line up, but only if the bumper extended out front about 5 inches, which looked like crap. If I put the bumper where it belonged, only one hole on each side lined up, so guess how many bolts are holding the bumper on at this time.... Luckily, the bumper mounts sit right on the frame, and will almost hold themselves up without the bolts, so the bolts only hold them from sliding forward and backward. The frame rail they sit on hold them up and down and level. The bumpers, front and rear, are NOT functional, just cosmetic. They always were, which is why they started making the bumpers bigger in 1973, and bigger still in 1974. By then they were functional, but dog-ass ugly! If you think about it, most bumpers today are non-functional, or nonexistant. Think of the Mustangs these days, just a foam bumper with a plastic cover. Probably less functional than Della's new additions.
Yes, I recognize that there is a dent in the front bumper, but these were purchased with the intent of using them as a core exchange on rebuilt/rechromed bumpers. That dent could easily be straightened out for rebuild. Also, the guy who will finish the bodywork and paint can straighten out that lower body panel with ease.
sub w/tax for nuts and bolts and mirror glue = 8.41
Talked to a guy at work who is into cars. Asked him to keep an eye out for 351W heads (preferably cheap ones). By coincidence, there just happens to be an old dumptruck on the property that has a blown transmission and has been sitting out with the windows down for about ten years. He was thinking of taking the thing apart for parts, and said that since I need the heads, he may get to it a bit quicker and pull them off for me. I wont pay more than $100 for them, since I will probably end up getting some Edelbrock aluminum heads in the end. But, if I can increase the airflow in and out, increase the compression, and thereby increase the horsepower all for $100, I will do it for the short run. Could always sell them later if I wanted to replace them.
Got inspected today, so it has been right at one year since Della became part of our family.
7/3/2004 -- I apologize for writing a June entry in July, but I need to wrap up the month and forgot to do it until today. I feel that this has been a very productive month. I am very happy with how Della is turning out. The bumper swap was a satisfying job heading her in the right direction. I am also very happy with the rear spoiler. If all continues going as well, I might be ready for paint within the year. I recognize that I did quite a bit of work for very little money. It would be nice if this pattern continued...
Total = 3235.79
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