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Well here we go again. I found a rust free 68 bird I just could not pass up. Pulled it from a barn last week and it is in remarkable condition. No drive train came with the car though.

NO RUST at all !! None! Sitting in a thin coat of red lacquer primer.

I have it all taken apart and fitting panels right now.

First quick question. As I have never sprayed in cold temps, is it OK to warm my double garage up with my wood stove and spray epoxy sealer on just one panel? Say I just want to seal the inside of hood after sanding to metal. If I am smart about prep and planning; thats not enough to blow up correct? Use a small electric heater to keep the place a bit warm?

Pics to follow soon.
 

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Good find. You gonna try to find some matching number engine parts, like heads, block, intake, OR ? Never too early to start trying to locate parts. :smile22:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The car came with 326 but will go with 400 and Muncie. Not going for numbers here. Way to much work. Will go for period correct tho. I need the Pontiac engine mounts as well. have a 305 with a power glide for now.
 

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If it were me I wouldn't spray paint with a electric heater running in the same room. Same with any heater that burns anything. For your safety, rig a heater outside with tubing and a fan to blow the hot air into the garage.

While I don't think that epoxy itself is flammable, there are solvents added to make epoxy paint that are. the lacquer thinner or acetone used to thin it is highly flammable. More so than gasoline.
 

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" Not going for numbers here...Will go for period correct tho..."

OK, I assume by "period correct" you mean '67-'79, which was the period of time, when the 400 was used in Pontiacs.

So, a 400 block from '67 thru early '75 will work. Beginning during the '75 model year, when the #481988 blocks ran out, they began using a #500557 block. These blocks had thin main webs, which proved to cause a lot of failures. :(

They did make a stronger 400 block for '78 &'79--# XX 481988. But these blocks had only 3 of the motor mount bolt holes drilled and tapped. So, you cannot use these blocks in your '68, without some sort of motor mount adapters.

I'd recommend using a '71-'75 casting #481988 block. They were used in all '71 thru earlier '75 400's. So, they should be the most plentiful, good, 400 blocks still out there. Yes, any of the '67 thru '70 400 blocks will work in your '68. But, if you build with one of the '70 thru early '75 blocks, which had all 5 motor mount bolt holes drilled and tapped, the engine will be easier to sell, should you ever decide to sell it. That's because it can be used for either 2-bolt or 3-bolt motor mount applications.

For heads, I'd use the '75-'79 # 6x heads. The 6x-4 heads, that came on 350's and W-72 400's, had smaller chambers, which will provide a little more compression. But if you don't really want a high performance engine, but just a good, very pump gas friendly, daily driver, you can use the more common and cheaper 6x-8 heads. The 6x-8 heads provided only about 7.6:1 compression. But, by milling off a small amount, using thin Cometic head gaskets, and a small Voodoo cam, you can build a spunky little pump gas 400, which will make a good DD, and will burn rubber, when you pop the clutch. :lol:

To, further look "period correct", I'd run a 1972 iron intake, and a good rebuilt '76-'79 Q-jet carb, with an electric choke conversion. But, of course, if want it to look more period correct, for the '67-'69 period, you can run any of the '68-'71 heads and intakes, and a '68-'70 Q-jet, with a divorced choke. Some #16 or #62 heads would look right on a '68 Bird. But if the chambers are 75cc or smaller, you need to use dish pistons, to reduce compression, for pump gas.The '70 #64 heads would look close enuff, and would be my pick from those years. The '71 #96 heads are also good heads for a low compression 400. Even the low performance '68-'70 2-barrel heads, such as #17, #47, & #11, can be used, but will need to have screw-in rocker studs installed.

Well, as you can see, there are LOTS of ways you can go, depending on exactly which "period" you wanna be correct for. But this will at least give you several ideas of possible ways you can go. Good luck with your build, whatever you decide. :smile22:
 

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(is it OK to warm my double garage up with my wood stove and spray epoxy sealer on just one panel?)

I heat up my garage with a wood burner Then let it almost go out then turn on the exhaust fan

and spray the epoxy the flash time is 30 min If another coat is required I repeat the process

You can paint epoxy down to 50* it just takes longer to dry
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks so much for your responses guys. I need all the help and insight i can get

I would love nothing more than to number match this car however with the Canadian dollar the way it is and shipping, it would be way to expensive. Perhaps down the road. This car was a 350 my mistake and thanks Pony for your informative stuff on the 70s blocks, heads and intakes. In fact I have read many of your posts on here that pertain to my car and its refreshing to see someone with the scope of knowledge that puts it out there for others to learn. I really liked the carburetor article. Brown Bird has a great build going on so I am along for the ride.

I am very lucky as it is rare to see a car like mine so clean. I am missing the following and in no particular order.

engine (dressed)

trans

front bumper (replace)

motor mounts

rear bumper

brake booster and master cyl.

Brake clutch assembly and mounting hardware

rad

air filter set up.

drivers side, hood scoop, trim casting

exterior window sill trim.

weather strip kit

windshield (replace)

Heater controls.

radio

Front seat buns and vinyl ( replace)

a few emblems and trim

I have started the sanding of inner hood and my son and his pal were at it this afternoon. I have the POR product to go on a few pitted areas on the hood shell and I suspect that was caused by the scoops. I want this car to be a 4 speed, so I will need track down that stuff first but depending on timing I may run what I have, consul and auto. The car is stripped out so now is the time to epoxy. Just steering column and brake/gas petal left. I think I can keep busy with a few panels. There is a rust hole in the trunk the size of a dime so a small piece will go in there. The right sail panel to roof joint is fully cleaned up and ready for strand filler and I tugged at a low spot on the front fender with a stud welder so that should be good to go for filler as well. The rest should be fitting and blocking. The fenders were tight on the hood so I have loosened everything off to get alignment.

I have all the primer products so I will just need consumables along the way and I should be good to go.

Thats where were at. Pics to follow.
 

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That is not a replacement quarter panel just leftover paint from the under side of car. All under car, firewall, and frame done as bought. Front disc brake conversion was done as well. I got the stock rally rims not ones shown in pics and different tires. Also has an updated steering box from a 70s bird.
 

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I had a 68 convertible I loved that car your bird looks to be very solid have fun with your build
 

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All these repro parts are available, in the lower 48, but I'm wondering about shipping charges across the border. What's your experience in that area ? Is there one particular method of shipping that will save you some $$ ?
 

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Looks like a good place to start Rick! Keep us posted on your progress!

It sure look cold there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It does get cold here but I am used to it.

Thanks for the encouragement much appreciated!

Shipping and the dollar are a problem. The cheapest shipping is with US post and the duty just amounts to the taxes I would pay here anyways. Fed X is out to lunch with their rates!

Summit has a Canadian contingent so I can get stuff from there.
 

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"...Summit has a Canadian contingent so I can get stuff from there..."

This may prove to be one of your best sources. They sell LOTS of repro lines. May not actually stock many of the parts, but usually can get 'em, and will meet or beat the best price you can find elsewhere. So, after you decide what you need, and get prices, I'd definitely check with Summit before I ordered.

But, some choose to buy directly from the repro vendors. So, if this is your preference, please just disregard this post. :smile22:


 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I dont buy a lot of new repro parts. I really dont care where I get the parts from but I usually buy on local used list or some times Fee Bay. It wasnt until i saw a friend looking at a fat Summit catalog that I saw the Canadian Flag on the cover. Summit looks perfect to get the clutch/brake set up from.
 

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It might be pricey to switch to a 4 speed. The parts can be hard to come by. I ended up getting the Pontiac flywheel new from a guy on ebay kajun for around $200. The pedal assembly should be the same between a camaro and a firebird. The 69 firebird pedal assembly is different ask me how I know. The clutch z bar for a small block chevy will not fit over the pontiac stud. I found that out also. I believe that Brown Bird said the big block z bar worked with his car but he would have to confirm that. If you could get the whole set up from another firebird would be the best. I am dropping my tranny this weekend to change the clutch fork. The camaro and firebird are not the same. All that being said I say put the 4 speed in every time.
 

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I got the hood all cleaned up and applied the Por 15 on there. That stuff is tough paint. Got the duraglass on the sail panel as well as the left fender. I think I will dig out the other sail panel because I think the lead was removed and the wrong filler was used so I want to be sure its all good.

Thanks for heads up Terrible on the clutch peddle assembly. Good to know while I search for the parts.
 

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1968 Convertible 400, 200 4R, 1971 Formula 400 M-22 Rock Crusher, 1984 Trans Am...........
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Keep up the good work.
 

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MOAR PICS NAO!!! Frst Gen FTW!
 
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