1963 Pontiac Catalina massive project build thread - Page 3 - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 10-24-2010, 02:27 AM   #21
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Update. I just sent for a T-56 6 speed from another board. It includes an aftermarket shifter and a cross member for a 3rd gen firebird/camaro. I originally planned to go with a 4L80OD trans built to take the power/weight of the car but I've always felt that this kind of car (gasser/ street freak) needs a stick. And with the big 6th gear it should really cruise nice too. It will not be as fast as it could be with an automatic but it will be much more fun. Just need a good strong clutch/ flywheel and the double OD will allow me to run a little bit higher (numrically) rear gear. Eventually I'll have to build up the T-56 for more strength as they will not take a lot of power for long. Not to mention driver error!! Mark L
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:40 AM   #22
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Hi guys. Been a while since I posted. Been busy building the new frame rails to narrow the rear to get those fat meats under the car. I built two rail, I wanted to build one continuous rail from the front frame all the way over the axle and then cut back ito the old frame after the wheel wells. But I would have had to curve the long rail somewhere to get the reare inset and the front frame to line up. The front frame does not come in towards the middle enough to tie in a straight frame rail from front to back. So I'm making two per side. One long rail from the front frame to the rear lower control arm mounting bracketry, then overlap another inside of the long rail that goes up and over the axle and back to the origanal after the wheel well. The overlap will get weldded together to make one rail but out of two pieces. This is a pic of the two rails as they will go into the car. The long rails still needs to be cut for length.

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And the overaxle rail configuration. Archaic but I do with what tools I have. And it I wanted to claim some early gasser authenticity, then this is probably more like you would see back then.

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The block is almost ready, the short block should start being assembled soon. I have to take more parts down and now I need the cam so I have to do some real digging to find the right one.
They've installed the 4 bolt splayed caps. Inserted the support rods into the water jacket that will help support the block deck under boost, they've filled the block. I have to take the head studs down so they can finish hone th eblock woth a deck plate. I bought a specially machined timing set with a torrington bearing on either side of the cam retaining plate. This will hold the cam in place so it does not move forward and back. This will save wear on th eplate and the oil pump gears, and it will hild the timing rock steady for tuning.
So lots happening. I hpe to get the engine home soon. it will still be a while before any semblence of a runing car appears.
I did buy the T-56 and got it home but after pricing all the parts and things to build it for the power, get a clutch that will hold it all and get ti in and then with expected wear and tear, I've decided to remain with the 4L80. It'll still be fun just not as fun as the 6 speed. But more reliable and I'll be able to build boost on the trans brake for Gondo lanches on boost. Can't do that very well with the manual. Well, thought I'd up date you guys so far. Mark L
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:19 AM   #23
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Hi Mark. I see your over here also. I haven't been on here for a while and just noticed your '63. Can't wait (but I suppose I'll have to) to see it done.
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:28 AM   #24
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Hey 65. I came here originally because of the SSEi Bonne. It was getting where it needed brakes and suspension stuf so Ithohgt I'd get on some GM boards to get info. I added the thread on the '63 just for fun. But the SSEi was totalled and we replaced it with a 530i BMW. But I'm keeping the thread going for anyone that wants to see it.
I took more parts down to Tucson and hit myself in the eye taking the head out of the trunk. I was lifting the head and hit back of my head on the trunk lid, which caused me to automatically duck my head down, which smacked right into the rocker stud on the head.

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You cab see the rresults. So we decided to have some fun with it.

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Anywho. The pistons I am using were bought several years ago for a different 400 project that was never assembled. The set came with taper walled pins for less weight. Over time they've found that the taper walled pins have too much tendency to flex and distort in the pin bore with higher rpm or higher HP motors. So we are getting different pins and the rings were really not as good as what they have now so we are getting a new ring set. We are going with the Helfire ring set.
We talked about getting the cam from the guy that made the ultrdyne cams and my son is still working with Crower on that end. So I'm waitng to see the outcome from those inquiries.
Paul needs the rings to final balance the assembly. I had to take the head studs down so they could final hone the bores with the deck plate. If I can get a cam and the other parts soon I could have the short block done in 2 to 3 weeks.
I have the long main rails welded into the car. I have to fit the back end of the over axle rails and turn them back into the original frame rails and I can weld them in. Then line up the rear end, place the rear crossover that will hold the springs and shocks and start cutting out the original frame and the sheet metal wheel wells for tubing. Going slow but it is going. I was looking at going to a manual trans and picked up a '96 T-56 6 speed. But after weighing all the pros and cons of the t-56 versus the 4L80 I decided to stay with the 4L80. I rlly would love to have that T-56 in here for pure fun and if it weren't for my need to get it to the strip I would stay with it. The turbo just plain loves an automatic. Especially with a trans brake. I'll go manual shift in the auto, trans brake and a lock up converter. So it will stiff be fun. And i won't have to worry about clutch wear, or chatter, or sitting at stop lihghts in gear etc. So that'* where I am at the moment. Thanks for saying HI . Good to see ya here. Mark L
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Old 01-16-2011, 07:22 PM   #25
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You kept an Eye on that stud.I like how you has some fun with the picture also.
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:10 PM   #26
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Sorry about the incident Man, but about the funniest take I've ever seen on an accident by the person hurt. Incredible humor there,

... So, 07734, what are ya in for Man. The food here sucks, but the coffee aint bad.
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:14 PM   #27
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Oh man, that could have been so much worse.

Hello, safety glasses.
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Old 01-16-2011, 10:46 PM   #28
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wow! an old oliver tractor and a old white .......... ? miccormick ? \ ? i foregot
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Old 01-16-2011, 10:47 PM   #29
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ive taken a few hits to the eyes and i tell ya its never ever pleasant, like V said its nice to see a positive humorous take on it

sorry to hear about your SSEI being totaled, thats never a fun time, what killed it?
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Old 01-26-2011, 12:22 AM   #30
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We had a ginormous hail storm. Baseball sized hail. Totalled the SSEi and did $20,000 damage to the house. Have to replace the complete 3 year old roof. The air/heating unit (we mount those on the roof down here) had to be replaced, it completely smashed the coils and fins, and broke the tubing. We had to have the stucco on the East side of the house repaired and the whole house painted and some of the house trim replaced and all painted. The windows on the east side of th ehouse were all broken but only the outside of the double panes, so we are waiting to replace all the windows on the house. Our pool has all the plastic dividers between the cement sections, they were all smashed. Other than that it was a nice little rain, HA!!!.
I find humor in most things and mostly in myself. If you can't laugh at your own mess ups then you're taking life too seriously. Anyway. Slapping myself because I did something stupid would have hurt too much. It was just easier to laugh. Heh! Mark L
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