78 Pontiac Trans Am 454 LS6 Project - Second Gen Showroom - Firebird Nation

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78 Pontiac Trans Am 454 LS6 Project


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#1 2306

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  • Year: 1978
  • Make: Pontiac
  • Model: Trans Am
  • Engine: 454
  • Transmission: TH400

Posted 04 December 2019 - 04:28 AM

As you possibly know, I am Tom from Switzerland. I bought this 78 on 06/23/19. It was a birthday present for myself. Always loved the look of the Trans Am, but never liked the HP output of these Cars.

 

So I found this 90s year build with an interesting motor. Pre-Owner started to swap a brand new 454 LS6 in it. He never finalized everything.

 

Since June, I work on this car now. My goal is to get a mean looking Trans Am in a custom Bandit Look.

 

I would like to tell you what I did already;

 

 

-        Finished the 454 LS6 engine swap, which the Pre-Owner started. Now the battery is in the Trunk, everything is wired up now and the engine runs great.

 

-        In the 90s, a Body shop made a Flip-Front conversion. The work is good, but they did not find a solution to lock the Flip-Front. That is why the front was very flabby; it felt not confidence to drive that car. I build in some hood locks and release cable from the Dodge Viper, and made some custom brackets. Unlock the Flip-Front is very easy but now the front sits tight, and it feels more stable to 100%. Very big step done.

 

-        I had to replace the hood because of street regulations. I ordered an OER Shaker hood. Fitment is very good and it was possible to make the hood fits very nice.

 

-        A big challenge was the Air filter / Shaker. Because of the 454, an RPM Manifold, Holley Carburetor and center offset of the engine, there is no space at all for any oem or Butler Performance drop air filter housing.
I made my own Air Filter system now. So now there is a steel/aluminum base plate now with a 6 ½ Inch Air Filter. The shaker comes on the base plate and is sealed with special mounting tape. The air gets sucked in through the shaker top, which is opened. I am proud about this construction. I am not very happy about the tiny air filter, although Mr. Gasket filters told me there would be enough Air Flow for the 454. May sometimes I have a better idea.

 

-        I removed the ugly exhaust system. Now I installed a custom exhaust system, starting with Hedman Headers, going to a 3" Magnaflow Exhaust with a Tru-X pipe.

 

-        Replaced the Trunk Torsion springs.

 

-        Replaced Heater Core.

 

-        Complete Maintenance.

 

 

What I want to do on Winter/Spring 2020

 

-        Complete Paintwork, Black.

 

-        Repaint Engine.

 

-        New suspension. Think about 2" Lowering Springs in the Front, 3" Lowering Leaf springs in the Back and Hotchkis Shocks.

 

-        Interior; Black Headliner, Black everything what is blue right now :-), new seats in the front, Yearone Door Panels (to fit 16.5cm speakers), Sound system.

 

 

As you see I have a lot to do this winter and hope get this done that I can drive next summer. Following steps will be new Wheels, Decals and so on. Cannot spend that money at once and I have to find time also.  

 

Thank you for comments and feedbacks! This thread will be continued so soon as possible :-)

 

 

How i bought the car on 06/23/19.

post-143228-0-77337600-1573739134_thumb.

 

Flip Front tilted to the front

 

778uqci4.jpg

 

Dodge Viper Hood Lock on Chassis

iqrvi2y9.jpg

 

Dodge Viper Hood Lock, Front latched

ao9utgp2.jpg

 

Bottom Fender

cvio7i2u.jpg

 

Self Made Base Plate

2mlilwqf.jpg

 

3" Magnaflow Exhaust, Tru-X

n78x947m.jpg

 

On the Sea :-)

w4td3kp6.jpg

 

Interior how it Looks now.

lkql28wc.jpg


Edited by 2306, 04 December 2019 - 04:29 AM.


#2 Mickey_London

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  • Engine: 5.7
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Posted 10 December 2019 - 12:09 PM

Wow !!!
A lot of work has gone into her. Love the front flip, and what a lovely mean and aggressive stance she has.
Keep the pictures coming
Mick

#3 ZumpTA

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Posted 10 December 2019 - 01:25 PM

Excellent fabrication work!  Can't  believe previous owner hinged the entire front clip like that and kept the hood "original". Given the obvious intentions for the car,  I would have welded the hood down and filled the gaps for aerodynamic reasons, or, went to a full 1 piece fiberglass front end.  Regardless, that's one of the meanest looking 'birds I've ever seen.


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#4 sea dog

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Posted 10 December 2019 - 03:04 PM

Great job of turning an ordinary bird into an extraordinary bird. .



#5 2306

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  • Transmission: TH400

Posted 10 December 2019 - 04:29 PM

Thank you very much for your comments. I hope you will be not disappointed about black paintwork what will come this winter.

 

Sadly, the paint needs to go. The hood has not the same paint now; the paint on the fenders is broken because of work on Flip-Front locks. In addition, the airbrush on the side, it screams 90's.
If I do new paint, must be black. Planning to do a mean looking black T/A like we don’t have a lot of in Switzerland. Hope you people in the U.S. are not bored about this.

 

Also, hope the Stance will be even better with lowering leaf springs and new springs in the front.

 

One thing about the Flip-Front. I am very happy the previous owner made the complete front like it is. It needs two people to flip the front to the front. 

Not a big thing, but if I have a breakdown I will be happy to pop-up the hood normally instead. Open the complete front is great for bigger work, changed the heater core very fast this way. And nice for Show.

A functional Shaker would not work with the Flip-Front as well. I am happy about how it is.

 

Thank you very much for every comment. Will be continued for sure.



#6 sea dog

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Posted 10 December 2019 - 06:14 PM

Before you do the black paint, your bird's body must be worked to perfection. No other color shows a less than perfect car body more than black does.

 

Every ding, shallow dent, low & high spots will show plainly. As an example; my 90 f-body has a shallow dent on passenger door. With the light blue paint that's on the car, you really have to look closely to see the dent. But if paint was black, dent would stand out like it had a neon sign pointing to it.



#7 1973-Formula

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 04:26 AM

Cool project, looking forward to see more of it!






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