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After finally committing to an engine for my 1970 Chevelle (a 6.0 Vortec), I figure it is about time I made a build thread. I bought my car in January of 2010 when I was 15. It was the first car I looked at so I probably jumped the gun a little bit and could have gotten one that was a little more solid but I have always enjoyed a challenge.




I then proceeded to take it apart. In my infinite wisdom, I did not document how things went together or what the fasteners were so I know that is going to come back and bite me when it comes time to put the car back together.




After pulling the motor and transmission and getting the body off of the frame, I realized the that frame had multiple cracks and splits in it. I have no idea how I could have missed all of the cracks when I first checked out the car. This should be a lesson for anyone looking at a project car: check everything!



 

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I bought a solid frame from a fellow TC member and got it assembled with Energy Suspension bushings, Moog ball joints, and UMI Performance upper rear control arms. I also bought a set of disk brakes off of a '71 wagon and Eibach lowering springs.





 

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I then towed the frame back up to the the barn where I was storing the body of the Chevelle and reattached it. Then I towed it back down to the garage and started the working on the sheet metal.









This week I bought a gas tank for a 92-96 Caprice and started test fitting it. I only required the frame rails to be ground down a little bit at each corner. I also finished chopping out the rest of the trunk floor. I plan on building my own frame braces and reusing the gas tank braces. Then I will build the trunk floor out of sheet metal with an access door to the fuel sending unit of the gas tank.




So that is all of my progress so far. I just bought a 6.0 Vortec engine out of a 2001 Silverado on ebay and it should be here on Tuesday. I plan on finishing up the bottom sheet metal so that I can take the body back off of the frame to paint it, then start working on the drivetrain.

David
 

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Nice work David. I bought my 65 in high school too....23 years ago. Just now starting on it. It was to big of a project for me back then, so its sat, waiting. I admire your committment, it'll be fun doing it and nice when its done. Good luck, I'll be watching for updates. Hope to start a build thread on mine soon.
 

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yikes. pretty impressive work there.
 

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Looks like you have the drive and some know how which can be a dangerous combination.

I miss the days of living at home no bills, and working just after High School. All the spare money could go to cars or girls.
 

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Wow I remember only dreaming of having a Chevelle back in High school. 22+ years ago.

Good for you :thumbsup: Keep up the good work:yes:
 

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When I saw the first couple of pics David my first thought was this kid has gotten himself in over his head. But after seeing and reading your thread I realize I was hasty to judge. Looks good and your doing a great job so far. Some times it take youth and enthusiasm to over come ones fears of getting in over there head and you seem to have both with drive to boot. I'm going to tag this thread so I can watch your progress. Invest in some service manuals like the factory assy. manual and the chassis service manual and it'll help some on the getting the stuff back together. Keep up the good work and keep us posted!:thumbsup:
 

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Pretty impressie you know how to weld when your only 16-17 years old. I did the same thing to my chevelle but I started when I was 18, I am almost done at 24. I did alot of sheet metal replacement(full quarters, door skins, fenders, hood, rocker decklid etc) and to me it looks like it would be a good idea and see if you can find a nicer body to work with.
 

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Great looking work you are doing.
You mention fabing the trunk floor, have you considered raising the floor some to
compensate for the fatter B-body tank? Not necessary, but since you got it cut out anyway.





Keep up the good work,
Malcolm
 

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Great project. I purchased my GTO when I was 15 as well. You are doing way more than I ever did at your age. Keep it up.

Raising the trunk floor is a great idea. I would also suggest making an access panel so that you can easily service the fuel pump if it ever goes out.

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for all of the encouragement. I hadn't thought of raising the floor to compensate for the thicker tank. I will have to look into that. Does anyone know if the stock caprice fuel pump will be up to the task of feeding the 6.0?
 

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....Does anyone know if the stock caprice fuel pump will be up to the task of feeding the 6.0?
Probably not, but a Walbro 255 l/hr pump is not a very expensive upgrade.

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Probably not, but a Walbro 255 l/hr pump is not a very expensive upgrade.

Andrew
Which pump do I get? There are quite a few of them but I found this universal one: http://www.summitracing.com/parts/VPN-GSS341/ Would that fit? When I change the pump I will also redo the wiring because one of the plastic connectors is cracked which is probably not good. Are there any tips to rewiring it? Are there any wires or connections that I can remove to make it simpler?
 

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Which pump do I get? There are quite a few of them but I found this universal one: http://www.summitracing.com/parts/VPN-GSS341/ Would that fit? When I change the pump I will also redo the wiring because one of the plastic connectors is cracked which is probably not good. Are there any tips to rewiring it? Are there any wires or connections that I can remove to make it simpler?
Try to find a vendor that offers a drop in replacement kit for the Caprice tank. The kit might also include a new connector.

I prefer wiring the fuel pump through a relay that draws power directly from the battery. If you put the battery in the trunk that will be very easy to do. Fuel pumps operate best when they get plenty of voltage (12-14 volts)

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thank you. That is exactly what I was looking for.

I've been working on making new trunk floor braces and I noticed that the cross brace that is underneath the package tray is almost completely rusted out. I am going to drill out the rear seat/trunk divider panel to get better access to it. Are there any structural issues I should be aware of when I do this?
 

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So I got the 6 liter last week and I have been taking it apart ever since. I took my 350 off of the stand (which is for sale by the way) and put the new engine on it. At this point it is completely stripped down except for the harmonic balancer/pulley and the piece that goes between the cylinder heads. Does anyone know how to get this off and get the two wires unplugged? Even though the engine has 210,000 miles on it, I can still see some of the crosshatching on the cylinder walls. Because of that I see no reason to do a complete rebuild.

There are quite a few electronics and plumbing connections that I have no idea about what they are so I hope there are a few experts here who can help me. :D Are there any common problems or weaknesses in the Vortec engines that I should be aware of such as weak main or rod bolts, etc?




 
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