1997 Pontiac Firebird

Update your progress on your various car projects.

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MostMint
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Location: planning a race

Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby MostMint » Sun Oct 06, 2019 9:52 pm

For autocross and track day no need for a big $ upgrade to the bearings. At the very least you need to know the maintenance interval on these before making that decision.
[quote="Basement Paul"]Is that a mint rocketship on the hood?? :shock:
-BP[/quote]

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:44 am

Yesterday I installed the new Moog front wheel bearing / hub assemblies on both sides. The previous owner claimed to have installed new ones and made it seem like it was done recently. I'm sure this car sat outside, and being low to the ground doesn't help rust issues, but these things looked terrible. They were also in worse shape than I thought after inspecting them once removed. They would spin almost freely and I feel the slop wiggle in my hands. After putting the AutoZone version next to the Moog, there's a pretty noticeable difference in the too, and the Moog is even a little heavier. I cleaned up all the rust on the bolts and mounting area, slapped some never-seize on them (in case I have to do this again), and put it all back together. It wasn't a terrible job and each side took about 45 minutes because of the sanding and clean up time. I believe if I was in a hurry and didn't have any rust clean up, that I could do this job in about 20 minutes.
I still have the y-pipe to put header wrap on while the car is in the air, and the bottom portion from the molding down to wax, and I should be good to go for now. I looked and there's pretty much no way I'll be able to wrap the headers in the car, but the y-pipe wrap will help two things: keeping the transmission cooler and keeping the interior cooler also. Worthwhile investments since I already have the wrap.

As of now, there's a chance I'll be able to get on track next Wed. Hopefully that works out.

-BP
Attachments
hubs 10-9-19.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Thu Oct 10, 2019 3:48 pm

I ordered this today too:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/BMR-Strut-Brac ... 2749.l2649

I had money from a sold shifter and wheel burning a hole in my paypal account. Plus I had a few eBay bucks too.

-BP

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:02 pm

Last night I was able to get the y-pipe wrapped up. Not sure if it helped or not, but I figured it was free, and it couldn't hurt. Boy is that a messy job once you get it wet...

-BP
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y wrap2 10-11-19.jpg
y wrap 10-11-19.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Mon Oct 14, 2019 9:56 pm

I got this mounted tonight. It's never as smooth as you hope, but a longer bolt here and some lube there and it was in. It seems like a real solid piece.

-BP
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IMG_20191014_210420534.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:23 pm

Just by chance while driving to the track day yesterday, the left rear exhaust hanger broke. Mostmint had a couple steel zip ties that got me through the day. Tonight I broke out the welder for the first time in years and got it put back together.

-BP
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IMG_20191017_193449336.jpg
IMG_20191017_165330350.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:08 pm

With another track day looming, we had a few things to do. The most important was the power steering cooler and synthetic fluid. We also rotated the tires, checked the brakes and fluids, installed the new non-leaking gas cap, and pulled out the rear seat and seatbelts. Good thing too as there was a stinky mouse nest onder the driver's side rear seat.

-BP
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IMG_20191028_150311788.jpg

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Fred32v
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Location: Munson, OH. retired

Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Fred32v » Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:54 am

I did take the TrackBird for a small test ride out to Rick's Garage.
There were no surprises, steered as normal and there are no spots
on the 32v garage floor. These small mods are just the beginning
of something. Not sure were this is going but I can't wait.

DSCF9238.JPG
No more back seat

DSCF9239.JPG
15 maybe 20 lbs. of stuff

DSCF9231.JPG
Formula V6


Formula V6 is ready for another track day!
Fred32v
GMC Canyon Crew Cab Short Box 4x4 V6!

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Wed Oct 30, 2019 4:11 pm

That V6 looks perfect, even up close.

-BP

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sun Nov 17, 2019 7:50 am

Yesterday I did a little prep work to get ready to pull the rear end out. Got the car jacked up, put my newly made wood lifts under the front tires, and pulled the muffler and tailpipes off. I ordered a 3" muffler last week, but realized that the current pipe is only 2.5", so I'll have to swap it out on my next trip to Summit.
Hopefully next weekend we can get the rear end out so we can get it to JD race for the 3.90 gear install. I also have an aluminum driveshaft and tubular rear lower control arms coming this week.

-BP
Attachments
IMG_20191116_124444082.jpg
IMG_20191116_124429581.jpg
IMG_20191116_124503152.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sun Nov 17, 2019 9:34 am

MostMint was able to procure some action shots from the last couple track days. I'm glad I buffed it out. The car photos really well from far away.

-BP
Attachments
TrackBird8.jpeg
I like this one in front of the Saturn.
TrackBird6.jpeg
TrackBird1.jpeg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sat Nov 30, 2019 3:51 pm

Today we got the rearend tore out without any issues. Should be taking it to JD Race early next week. We also figured out the yoke we're going to use in the transmission. The one that came with the "new" eBay aluminum driveshaft had a steel ring with a rubber center attached to it. The rubber was dried and cracked, but it was 1/2" longer than the one that was in the car, but it's an OEM piece. The one that came out of the car was just a Turbo 350 piece.
What we did is just cut the steel ring and knocked the rubber off so we can use the correct yoke without having an issue with the dry damper ring later.

-BP
Attachments
IMG_20191130_112507451.jpg

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Mon Dec 02, 2019 5:27 pm

The rearend got dropped off at JD race this afternoon, in hopes to have it back by Saturday. I also ordered a urethane torque arm bushing too. This should end the spending on this half of the car. Hopefully the engine leak will be a less expensive endeavor, but the rearend will definitely be a big improvement in performance. Also, we learned that the gear in the car was a stock 3.23 and not 3.42 as we thought.

-BP

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Fred32v
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Fred32v » Thu Dec 05, 2019 3:06 pm

TrackBird came with only one set of keys. After I tried a few things looking on the internet,
I just went to Junction, they have a secret box, ordered the correct keys and picked them up today.

DSCF9308.JPG
Now there are two!


OK, I tried them and the car comes to life and the doors can be locked. (Deck lid is a different matter.)
Fred32v
GMC Canyon Crew Cab Short Box 4x4 V6!

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MostMint
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Location: planning a race

Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby MostMint » Thu Dec 05, 2019 10:43 pm

Seems to me they could make a lock for the back that matched your key. Maybe too old?
[quote="Basement Paul"]Is that a mint rocketship on the hood?? :shock:
-BP[/quote]


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