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03-23-2009 12:25 PM Progress on the '63
With the clip out of the way, the old engine is much easier to get to.

I've been running ads like crazy on Craigslist, and they've paid off. I sold the frame from the donor van for $200, got another $200 for the wheels and tires, and best of all, I got $100 for this engine I took out of this Impala.

When I bought the car almost three years ago, I deciphered the numbers on the engine, to confirm what the seller told me about it. Yep, it's definitely not anything I want to keep, a 1971 model 307.

The guy I sold it to told me he will spend as much as $1500 rebuilding it, to convert it to a full roller engine--to use in a demolition derby car! I went to a couple of those last year, and saw that the amount of work they put in to those cars to prep them, is amazing. I think it's kind of funny that my old 307 will live out it's final days--- in a 1980s Ford sedan!

He told me that many promoters don't allow any cars older than 1980 anymore, so the old donks are now out, as well as getting a little hard to find. He says (and I saw) that 90% of those guys now run Fords, Lincolns and Mercurys, because the frames and bodies are apparently considerably stronger than their 1980s GM counterparts.

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  [Entry #184]

03-23-2009 12:00 PM The '63 Project Begins-March 16, 2009
I used The Paul and my truck to drag the '63 backwards out of my driveway, into the street, roll slowly down the hill, and then used the aforementioned white Accord as the tractor to push the Impala backward in to the garage. I used a tire as a cushion to prevent damage to either vehicle.

The car is inside now, and the weather is perfect.

Early on, I want to test-fit the new drivetrain, so I can get the transmission crossmember fabricated. I'm also concerned that the transmission, a 4 speed automatic (4L60?) is much larger than the Powerglide I took out, and I want to make sure it fits. If I have to cut the floor, I'd rather do it now, early in the project.

It's probably a little early to start complaining about my project getting out of hand, but this is how it starts. I wanted to remove the grille and radiator support, so this requires removal of the bumper. This car is radically different than the plastic, snap-together Accords I've been working on, and about 1 of every 5 fasteners comes out the hard way, breaking off, or the nut inside turning, and having to be cut off with the torch.

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  [Entry #183]

03-12-2009 07:33 AM Other stuff
Some of the other stuff that's been happening, a nice snowstorm, this one was a good day to work in the garage with the heater on.

Seeing the Impala like this gives me mixed emotions. I'm glad to see it finally home after so long sitting elsewhere. I'm hopeful about it and can't wait to get started on it.

But I've been doing other things. The GF and I put this '93 Accord together on the cheap, for her teenage daughters. I bought it for $200 right in front of the junkyard, from a guy driving it in. It was wrecked, with a mangled front end, a blown airbag, broken front springs and struts, a bit of a disaster.

These are old enough that the Pick N Pull is full of them, and with just a little searching, we found another white one, and got the hood, grille, front bumper cover, air bag, wheel covers, a muffler, some interior door handles and more from the white and a couple of different donor cars. We did all the work in two weekends while it was cold out, (didn't have to paint anything) got it to pass inspection, licensed and everything, all including purchase price for less than $500.

We'll see how long it lasts with two new teenage drivers and 268,000 miles on it to start with.

I bought it because it was a cheap 4 cylinder automatic car, but with a little research, I found out it's actually a bit of an interesting car. US (Ohio) made, it's a 10th anniversary edition, available only in white, black or green. With a spoiler, 15 inch alloy wheels, rear disc brakes--a cool car for $500.

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  [Entry #182]

03-12-2009 07:32 AM Gateway Classic Cars
Here's the GC all polished up, ready for it's big debut at Gateway Classic Cars in Fairmount City, Illinois. I took these photos right before I drove it inside, and the third (blurry) photo is of it sitting in their staging area, for their photographs.

Be sure and check out their website:

Here's the movie:

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  [Entry #181]

03-12-2009 07:30 AM The GF washing the GC.
Wanting to move on to other things, I recognized the need to get this green Cutlass out of here. Some of the material on it had shrunk back, so I had to sand and buff it again. I elected to do it one panel at a time to minimize the huge clean-up operation that would be required.

I covered the rest of the car with blankets, used tape and paper to cover others. I bought a new foam pad, which I've never had before. It took a long time, and I spent a lot of time moving the blankets and masking around.

Here's a shot of the finished interior.

Here's a shot of the GF washing the green Cutlass. She hates this picture. I think she thinks it makes her look subserviant or something. I bought a car for her daughters, so we're even.

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  [Entry #180]

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