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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
ok, so first let me tell you I know next to nothing about cars but I really want to learn more. I got my hands on a '69 chevelle 350 malibu a little while back and now I want to start working on it. It is already in good working order, just a semi-bad paintjob...
what should I start off doing to really get my car to fly?

Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated!
 

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We need some current specs so we know what your working with.
Do you know what type of cam your motor has, which carb, ignition, tranny, and gears?????
Is it all stock looking stuff???
 

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bolt ons are the place to start. headers, intake manifold and carburetor too. i would start with those three things. do you have a posi rear? (do both wheels spin?) if not, you can get a posi rear which enables both wheels to spin, and get a nice set of gears to make the car accelerate faster. if its a street car lets say 3.73 gears. start there and see how you like it. the biggest gains are going to come from cylinder heads and a camshaft, but thats more involved.
 

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Matt, Mike is spot on, start with a goal, make this a systems engineering excersize. Once you establish a goal ( make the car faster - how fast, stright line, corners, etc). you can start prioritizing your "souping up". I should think rear gears/posi are #1. Front discs #2. Full compression/leak down check on the engine to see what state its in #3.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ok, so it has a 350 big block, 12 bolt 3.10 rearend i think, disc brakes all the way around i believe ill go double check everything
if i give you my VIN would that help any more? everything on the car is stock and unmodified so far....
 

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ok, so it has a 350 big block, 12 bolt 3.10 rearend i think, disc brakes all the way around i believe ill go double check everything
if i give you my VIN would that help any more? everything on the car is stock and unmodified so far....
a 350 big block? i need to get my hands on one of them!;)

12 bolts rear = good

there is no such thing as a 3.10 gear though. its probably 3.08. either that or you could be confusing that with 4.10 gears, but thats highly unlikely.

discs all the way around? if that is true, you are set like a jet.

giving the vin will only tell us if its an ss or a malibu and wether or not it had a V8 in it...not much help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
haha aight, like i said i know next to nothing about cars so i could b wrong....on pretty much everything :p but like i said ill look into it and get good details
one thing i know i need to do though is replace the springs b/c the car rocks a lot on turns....
 

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one thing i know i need to do though is replace the springs b/c the car rocks a lot on turns....
I'd start with your suspension first, not the engine. If the car is "original,"
you probably need new bushings. Make sure your front end is in order before sinking $$ into the engine.
 

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Here's my input. Research and ask questions. Try and learn and understand as much as you can before you pull the trigger on something. Keep in mind one persons opinion on how your car should be set up and works great might not neccessarily be what you want. Trust me I know. I was in the same boat. I had a wimpy 270hp 350 and wanted to get some real power. Well I got it now and it's definately alot better than what I had but it's not quite set up how I really want it. Had I known then what I know now I'd be a couple thousand richer, easily.
 

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It is already in good working order, just a semi-bad paintjob...
what should I start off doing to really get my car to fly?
Drive it as is for a while, read, study, read, study, read some more, and then come up with a plan for what improvements you'd like to make.

First couple things you should get are a timing light and a vacuum gauge. If it's way out of tune, you'll get some good improvement just from tuning it.

Is that 350 big block from a Corvette?:D
 

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boy do i remember going through all this. dont fret. theres lots of good advice here. like everyone said, figure out what you want out of the car, and be realistic about it, remember speed costs $$$ so factor that into the goal. try to get the right parts the first go around so you dont have to respend $$$. and dont worry about the small block, them things are great. Dave
 

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I should have said this is the very first place.
OK you are the owner of this car..lets forget about this part.
Go over your car from front to rear from top to bottom.

You need a sound car to start out with. No sense going fast and can't stop, can't steer or handle the road.

Check your frame from front to back. These old cars have seen alot. Look for damage. Cracks...anything that don't look right.

Check your steering, ball joints, tie-rod ends, a-arm bushings, steering box.

If your going to make this a street car or a street/strip car. Make sure all lights work.

Is the glass in good shape. Hate to see ya get a ticket.

Hows the shocks front/rear, hows the springs...

I think you get the point now. Do a inventory of what you have.

I have had to change directions a few times on my unit. Because I didn't take these basic steps in the first place.

The car will handle much better, it will respond better to speed upgrades.
I know it's hard to resist the dark side (speed) so too speak. But you will be well rewarded.

BTW..If the local boys nag ya...Just tell them you are doing it the right way and you have TC on your side...:thumbsup:

Example: This was one year ago.




After one year, this is were we are at. I think it's been time well spent.



Enjoy your build...
And get some pictures in here.
We would love to see them...
 
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