The last time that we had talked about the 1972 Nova project was when I had cut off the old roof skin, and rested the “new” one in its place. Since then, I welded the skin into its new home, and began repairing the sections of it that were rotted. Now, before I go any further, you might be saying “You replaced a rotted roof skin with a rotted roof skin? What the what?!” And the answer is yes. Yes I did. See, people in New England can’t have nice things because of rust. The “new” roof was “very solid” (for New England metal) except for the whole rear section where the glass sits. Water had clearly pooled there for quite a while and destroyed all the metal in that area. BUT. Replacing that section was about one thousand times easier than replacing the entire middle of the old roof. So that’s what I did.
Once the back of the roof was somewhat together, I decided to see how terrible the front sheetmetal was going to fit. That process would have gone really well if the mounts for the lower fender bolts still existed. Sadly they did not. So, I now I have to make those. Great.
Great, now that I have your attention, what you are about to witness is pure automotive hottness at its very best. There’s beautiful fabrication, a beautiful car, a beautiful engine, and an overall beautiful build thread. The whole event took place over on MotorGeek, and if you have a spare hour or so, you will definitely want to read through the entire build thread. It’s dang near incredible. Here is the short story.
A user known as “timmmy” got a great deal on a 2003 Audi RS6 that had a missing twin turbo engine. He decided that rather than replacing it with a very expensive factory replacement, a 2004 Pontiac GTO LS1 v8 would be the best candidate to go in its place. The best part? He also swapped in manual transmission and kept the all wheel drive. For-The-Win. Absolutely ideal daily driver in New England? Yessiree Bob… err… should I say “Judas”? I forgot to mention that, this project is named Project “Judas”.
Now it’s one thing to plop this GTO engine into a 70 Chevelle, but a totally different game to surgically slide it under the hood of an awd Audi RS6. Mechanically, this engine swap had a unique set of challenges that you might expect, like relocating the transmission further rearward, modifying axles, and just basically making space for 4 more inches of engine under the hood. There was plenty of awesomely fabricated parts to make this happen. Transmission cross-members, engine mounts, accessory brackets, the whole shebang. The majority of the parts were made of aluminum, and if you have been reading the 1A Blog for a while, you know that I’m a sucker for TIG welded aluminum.
Fuel Injection. For those of you that have done fuel injected engine swaps before, you know that it has its own variety of challenges that carbureted engines don’t have, like ohhh, about 4 million wires. Not only that, but this builder then had to connect the LS1 engine harness to the Audi harness and have them play merrily. That way he would have a dashboard, OBDII port, and engine accessories that actually worked like they were intended. That takes some serious noggin power, and is almost always the most frightening part of a car build.
Within the build thread, there are probably hundreds of pictures, many videos, and great automotive banter throughout. I grabbed a few to share with you today, but really you need to check out the complete thread. It’s everything you want and more.
Over the past weekend, I decided to fix a part of the 1972 Nova that has been waiting for quite some time. It’s the passenger side rear… inner wheel house (a mouth full). You see, it rotted away decades ago, but I couldn’t repair it because I wasn’t even sure what shape it was supposed to be! I first had to rebuild everything around it to see where it fit in. So once I got the new outer wheel house, trunk floor, and trunk drop off attached, this project could finally be tackled. Since people love build threads, I decided to document the fun with plenty of photos. Let me know if you like this sort of thing, and I will be sure to post tons more. As you can see, there is plenty of work ahead. If you like the video, I can do more of that. If you prefer strictly pictures, I can cater to that. Tell me what you want to see and I will do my best to please the masses. Here we go!
One of the most old school tricks in the book for rust removal is using molasses. Yep, deliciously sticky molasses. It is just as easy as you would want it to be. You mix it with water for around a 7:1 water to molasses ratio. Then you drop the rusty parts into the bucket o’ goo, and forget about it for a month or so. When you eventually return, you remove your previously rusty metal to find ….viola……rust free metal! How great is that right? Oh….I see…..You want proof….fair enough. Over on killbillet.com, a member named “2.3Turbo T” recently did a great pictorial of this exact rust removing process. The best part you ask? He did it to the entire body of his car.
He started with a relatively complete ’27 T roadster body.
Finally. When I was 15, I bought a 1964 Chevy Impala convertible (my dream car), which you may have read about HERE. Because of it’s sad state of disrepair, I immediately started a body off restoration when it rolled off a flatbed and into my parents driveway. Much to my chagrin, it has never made much progress because of x, y, and z, but mostly because of its full time outdoor storage. Everybody that I know hassles me about it not being done yet because I thought I would be driving it to the junior prom (nope), then senior prom (nope), college graduation (nope), 5 year high school reunion (nope), wedding day (nope), 10 year HS reunion (nope)…… Well..yea….it still isn’t done. However, over the course of this extremely short feeling summer, I built myself a garage to play in. Last night, I finally got all the garage doors attached properly, and Continue Reading