Project Trans Am for July 2013 – Engine is in the Car!

What a significant milestone! The car hasn’t seen an engine since fall of 2010!

Engine is in!

Bryan came down the first weekend of July and helped me get the motor in! Thanks Bryan!!! The process went smoother now we had the right bolt pattern on the flywheel.

Engine is in! Engine is in! Engine is in!

Installing the engine with the transmission was definitely a smart move! I could not imagine installing the transmission afterward.

Lining up the engine mounts with the engine mount brackets on the engine was quite a challenge. I am glad I did some searching on the Trans Am forums the night before, I used about every trick posted. The biggest help was using large phillips screw drivers to align the engine side mounts with the clam-shell mounts on the frame. We did a lot of other things too, including using a 2×4 wood block to keep the clam shell from moving around at one point, a pry-bar to lift the clam shell on one side to line up with the mount, and used the engine load leveler to level out high and low spots. I just wonder how they did this from the factory!

Drive Shaft Balanced

Getting the drive shaft balanced ended up being one of the easiest tasks for the project to date. The folks over at Drive Line 1 here in Columbus, OH got my drive shaft balanced and the U joints replaced within a few hours. Talk about fast! If you take your drive shaft to¬†Drive Line 1, ask for Nick and mention you herd about them on my blog on the “Internet”.

Started Installing Parts and Attaching Lines and Hoses

So far I’ve attached/installed the following since the engine has been installed:

  • Drive shaft
  • Starter shimmed and installed
  • Exhaust manifolds
  • Steering Column lockout mechanism
  • Transmission pan with new gasket and shifter bracket

Taillights Restored

Restoring the taillights ended up being a good weekend project. Nothing too difficult, I cleaned the lenses, repainted the inside area glossy white, then used new gaskets to put them back together. The frames are the only parts that remain to restore.

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What’s Left

I need to finish attaching all the lines, hoses, belts, exhaust system, etc.. to the engine! Followed by the electrical wiring, oil-prime the engine, install the distributor, plugs and wires, then I can finally fire up the motor for the first time! I have a few other events going on in August, so more than likely I will aim to get the motor started over Labor day weekend.