1997 Pontiac Firebird

Update your progress on your various car projects.

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sun Mar 01, 2020 9:47 am

After some very light discussion, these seem to be a good bang for the buck for subframe connectors. The bolt in ones are about $70 more and the ONLY difference is the front mounting plates, otherwise the bars are identical. We can weld these in for the extra money and what's going to amount to an extra 20-30 minutes of work, mostly cleaning paint off for a better weld.

https://www.summitracing.com/oh/parts/upi-2001-r

-BP

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sun Mar 01, 2020 1:42 pm

After a little more discussion with myself, I might be leaning towards the bolt on ones. The logic being that if something happens to the car, or we just wear it out, it's easy to remove and recover some of our money or reuse on a different car.

-BP

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Basement Paul
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Basement Paul » Sat Mar 07, 2020 8:28 pm

The new UMI subframe connectors got installed today. They went on pretty easily and seemed to stiffen the car up somewhat.
The fog lights and mounts got removed from the front also. We opened up the holes a little more, then put the front row strap in the passengers side hole.
In the future we'll probably pull the front bumper cover off and lighten up the front steel bumper.
Next week should be the rear tow strap and the Go-Pro ceiling mount.

-BP
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Fred32v
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Fred32v » Sat Mar 14, 2020 4:44 pm

We think the TrackBird is ready for a summer of fun.

We took our 1st ride with the GoPro.

GoPro recorded 72 minutes, but the most meaningful are the first few minutes.

https://youtu.be/tDsjwWeu8E8


Things just keep getting better.
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 » Sat Mar 14, 2020 6:54 pm

It looks like the positioning is just about perfect, but we will have to strengthen up the GoPro part of the mount to keep it more still somehow. I'm sure there's a way.

-BP

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Fred32v
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Fred32v » Sun Mar 15, 2020 6:58 pm

We have enough pipe etc. to extend the GoPro mounting to the floor if that's needed.
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 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 10:02 am

We had a couple issues to address yesterday. The first was the GoPro shaking all around during any driving. What we did was dig through our pile of GoPro mounting parts and shortened the mount to only one extension, instead of two. This necessitated us grinding part of the mount so the huge plastic cover would be able to go vertical as it touched otherwise and would be crooked all the time. The good and bad is that it is now more solid and doesn't shake all over when driving, but it's just close enough to the mounting pipe to tap on it like Morse Code while driving, so anytime we're over 15 MPH, it sounds like a woodpecker is trying to get inside the camera. This should be fixable with just something soft between the plastic cover and the pipe. Maybe 32V can get a picture and show the video.

The next item on the list was the fan for the HVAC which worked before we took the interior apart, but not after reassembly. Also, somehow during the diagnostic part of this repair, we noticed we only had the 3rd brake light working, but no regular brake lights. All other light functions operated correctly.

With at least an hour of dash disassembly to trace all sorts of wires, checking lines with test lights, etc, I found that one of the five wires coming out of the fan control switch didn't go back into the huge wiring harness, it ended up in a 3-prong plug that wasn't plugged into anything, and it was HOT when the key was turned on... I searched for several minutes for a receiver for this plug only to find it was just above the air direction knob on the back of the HVAC panel. A small party ensued afterward as we plugged it in and the fan came back to life. For shits and grins i hit the brake pedal to find that somehow this wire being plugged into the HVAC panel has fixed our rear brake lights too! What?? Whatever I say as I'm happy that we didn't have to trace that problem.

The bad news is that while I was looking at wires, I noticed some wetness on the passenger's side footwell. This only means one thing, new heater core time. The good thing is that it's easily accessible and not very expensive, so I'm guessing next weeks project will be this. I'm ordering one online today sometime.

But after this monkeying around, we did go out for another drive. Might as well enjoy screwing around in it since we probably won't have any track time until June-ish based on what's happening in the world.

-BP

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Fred32v
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby Fred32v » Sun Mar 22, 2020 10:01 pm

Just as BP said, the camera case was very close to the mounting pipe which made that strange noise.
I took a small Velcro pad and stuck it to the mounting post with the bristles against the camera case.
TrackBird.JPG
Trackbird in action

2020_0322 GoPro mount.jpg
GoPro roof mount

Then it was time for another test drive, video is the first 6 minutes.
This was my first time to experience the new steering wheel, seats, and belts.

https://youtu.be/Za4er6daxhY

Temperature was in the 30's this morning, you can judge for yourself how well this GoPro preformed.

This test run (joy ride) was only about 15 minutes, but just like TRP, it was seriously good fun!
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 » Mon Mar 23, 2020 9:14 pm

The video looks and sounds perfect!

-BP

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MostMint
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Re: 1997 Pontiac Firebird

Postby MostMint » Mon Mar 23, 2020 9:53 pm

I see room for sponsor decals on the T-top bar and the back of the passenger seat
[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 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 7:41 pm

Today the TrackBird got a new heater core. It wasn't a terrible job except for reaching the hoses against the firewall with a strut tower brace in the way. The worst part was the new heater core, on the small hose side, didn't reach out as far as the OEM one. This is only a problem because the factory hoses are hardlines except for the last few inches which leaves very little room for flexibility. I was able to tweak and double clamp and it should be ok. Even with the dash out it still took about 2.5 hours. But now it's good to go.

-BP
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