The Biscayne Build Begins...

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by pleiades, Mar 29, 2017.

  1. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Since my bugeye is finally getting to the point where I'm good leaving it as is for a while (and most the other things I'd like to do with it are big-ticket items) I decided to start in on one of my other project cars. It's unfortunately not another Subaru but I thought it'd be worth sharing here anyway. Some of you might have seen my posts in silver03's long term relationships thread about it, but if not I'll give you some background...

    It's a '64 Chevy Biscayne 4-door post, nearly all original with the exception of some pinstriping and a few trim pieces. It came factory-equipped with a 235ci I6 and 3spd column-shift manual. No radio, AC, power anything, or really any options to speak of. Basically just a poor man's Impala.

    2017-03-29 00.27.06.jpg
    2017-03-29 00.27.34.jpg

    Not many miles on it but it's been in this area its whole life so there's a fair amount of rust. The whole car is really starting to show its age, and given that it's a very common and undesirable model (compared with the hardtops, convertibles, and SS models) it wouldn't make sense to do a full restoration. Instead I'll just be doing kind of a basic rat/low-rod/sleeper build. Whatever you prefer to call it, I'll be trying to do it for the lowest cost I can (within reason, don't want to do all this work just to end up with a pile of crap). The only body work I'm doing is replacing a couple pieces of the front bumper that are rusted and patching a few rust spots on the underside, otherwise it'll be left alone. That "patina" adds character anyway, right?

    The first step is going to be the drivetrain, which is irritatingly lethargic and cumbersome. Luckily I have a donor vehicle with a 454 and TH400 in it ripe for the picking. I'm currently piecing together the parts I'll need to make it work and I'll try to keep a running tally of the cost just to see how I'm doing on the budget build concept.

    Current parts/price list:
    Vehicle purchase price - $650.00
    Engine/trans donor vehicle - FREE!
    Auto steering column - $125.00
    Engine mounts - $28.54
    Tires - $215.00
    Front bumper - $55.00
    Oil pan - $44.99
    Heater core - $39.02
    Radiator - $126.00
    Coolant reservoir - $29.89
    Electric fan - $18.98
    Headers - $263.37
    Shipping - $52.00
    -------------------------------
    Total - $1,647.79

    Future plans after getting the drivetrain sorted out are pulling the engine back out to rebuild and beef it up a little (maybe somewhere in the 500hp range), air suspension, front disc conversion, and a different wheel/tire setup. All that may take a while and some of it certainly won't be in line with the budget build idea but I don't plan to do much more than that, aside from a few other little trinkets here and there.

    Wow, didn't intend for this to be such a long introduction. If anyone has much experience in builds like this feel free to offer your advice or opinion and wish me luck!

    *Edits for updating parts/price list
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
  2. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    What was the drivetrain donor?
     
  3. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    My opinion:

    It will be awesome! These take me back to my first love for cars(Impalas on bags with big blocks). There is an orange impala that frequents Car Craft and the North St Paul "History Cruise".

    Maybe you can make it over this summer sometime to see it and get some inspiration from it? :) Neumanns*cough-cough*

    I miss the days of being able to stand in the engine bay while servicing the engine! Definitely have to do the Mexican blanket seat covers! :)
     
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  4. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    The donor is an old farm truck that I ended up with, a '79 3/4-ton 2wd. I know it's not the ideal candidate because of all the restrictions added in the 70's, but it'll do for now. I am planning to squeeze some more power out of it but I want to get everything reliably functional on the car first. Just not sure how the rear end is going to hold up. If I'm not mistaken it's an 8-bolt 3.55 non-posi. Might need to swap in a 12-bolt eventually.
     
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  5. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    I've wanted to check that out for a while so I might have to take you up on that. And yes, I am definitely the giving it the Mexican blanket treatment :thumbup:. The rear seats are split pretty bad up top and the front ones are just starting to go. Bottoms of the door cards are falling apart so I'll probably use the same material for that too.
     
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  6. derp
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    derp Well-Known Member

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    Fixed that.
     
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  7. sneefy
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    sneefy Well-Known Member

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    Seriously. Totally sick of all the Subarus around here.

    I like a good 60s land yacht and will enjoy following this thread! It was a great decade for cars.
     
  8. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Lol, just ordered the bulk of the parts I still need (updated original post) and immediately received a call from my bank's fraud prevention department. Was less than $500 but apparently seemed suspicious. Next up I still need a new battery, an oil pan gasket, and a general freshening up of the 454 (fluids, plugs, etc).

    Also looks like I'll be making a trip out to a salvage yard in Annandale sometime soon for an auto brake pedal and a couple other odds and ends.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
  9. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    "We see here that you've only bought Subaru parts for the last X years. Is everything alright?"
     
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  10. SurlyOldManMN
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    SurlyOldManMN Omdat fok jou Staff Member

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    aaaaaaaaaand my panties just dropped.
     
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  11. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    When did you start wearing panties again?
     
  12. derp
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    derp Well-Known Member

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    "start again" would imply that he ever stopped.
     
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  13. idget
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    idget Want to pokéman? PM ShortytheFirefighter Staff Member

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    Nice, so we can expect to see it for sale for around $25k in a year or so?
     
  14. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    No, I'll sell it for a reasonable price and let the new owner swap all the original parts back in, then they can sell it for $25k.
     
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  15. idget
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    idget Want to pokéman? PM ShortytheFirefighter Staff Member

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    trade for a cobbled together 99 forester?
     
  16. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Lol, I was actually just reading that thread. Looks like it'll be another classic.
     
  17. silver03
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    silver03 Well-Known Member

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    I am looking forward to this build thread. What a terrific project you've chosen. Such a big car...we can use the trunk for the picnic shelter on this summers Subie cruise!
     
  18. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Lol, don't know about taking it on the LaX cruise but it might make it to North St Paul before the summer is over.
     
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  19. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    I made an unexpected discovery today with my donor vehicle. I was looking at mini starters and taking a closer look at the engine to figure out what style I needed. The valve covers didn't look quite right for a 454 so I started scraping off the decades of crud buildup and found out that it isn't actually a 454 :(. The truck did come with one but at some point it was swapped out. I found some casting numbers and was able to determine the following:

    Block - 3970010 - '69-80 350ci
    Intake - 346249 - '76-82 305ci or 350ci
    Exhaust - 3872742 - '66-68 283ci or 327ci
    Carb - 17057584, dated 0747 - '77 GM truck

    So it appears the engine was replaced with a 350 out of a '77 GM pickup and for some reason they used ram-horn exhaust manifolds from a late 60's V8. The carb is still a 4bbl Quadrajet and the trans is still a TH400.

    I still plan on using the engine and trans but I guess I have mixed feelings about it now. On one hand, a 350 isn't quite as cool as a 454 but the parts are cheaper and much easier to find. I'm not real concerned with power output since it'll still just be a cruiser and I won't be taking it to the strip or anything. The only real inconvenience is that I'll need to return the headers and oil pan that I've already purchased so I'll end up taking a hit on the shipping. The mounts should still work and I can still use all the cooling stuff.

    I also pulled out the original wheels that I had sitting and found that there's quite a bit of rust on them. Before I mount the new tires I'll be blasting and painting them so I also need to figure out what color to go with. Could do the original blue but with how faded the car is it won't match anyway. I was thinking maybe black, a metallic carbon gray, or a pearl white, otherwise maybe a candy red but that's kind of overdone. The new tires are the same size and style as these.

    2017-04-02 16.36.50.jpg

    So what do you guys think, what color would you do on the wheels?

    Edit: stupid question removed
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  20. derp
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    derp Well-Known Member

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    yep, your free donor vehicle came with the most easily modified engine ever instead of a big block. throw the whole project away.
     
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  21. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, not sure why I even bothered asking. Still going to move forward as planned and even though I'd rather use a 454 I'm totally fine with a 350.
     
  22. silver03
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    silver03 Well-Known Member

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    "On one hand, a 350 isn't quite as cool as a 454 but the parts are cheaper and much easier to find."-exactly.
     
  23. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    Details on the headers and oil pan you got for it?
     
  24. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    I wonder how a gunmetal would look on the rims?
     
  25. derp
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    derp Well-Known Member

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    supercharger. power issue fixed.
     
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  26. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Hedman part# 68180, full-length headers specific for this application.
    Oil pan is OEM for Chevy 427, shallower than the 454 truck pan to clear the crossmember.
    Obviously can't use either now.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  27. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    It might work ok, the plan is to eventually get an 18/20-inch set with gunmetal centers and polished lips. Starting to think I might like the look of red though. I also had a (probably terrible) idea of pearl white and then painting the roof the same color, but I'd still be leaving the "patina" aka rust and ****ty paint on the rest of the car.
     
  28. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    I could dig the pearl white with a white roof.(clear the patina?)

    I vote twin turbo'd treefiddy if you need mo powah. I think that you should just clean up the motor with a fresh rebuild and put a sexy sounding dual exhaust on it.
     
  29. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    That was my thought on it too (minus the forced induction, as cool as it would be). Really don't need much power in it, just want to get rid of any emissions crap and freshen it up. The sexy exhaust is a must for any classic car, but anything would beat the sound of the current inline 6 with a cheap cherry bomb.
     
  30. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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  31. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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  32. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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  33. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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  34. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    Yessir! Posted it in the Craigslist thread! Hahaha
     
  35. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Decided I want to go with red on the wheels, going for a look like this with bullet caps/lugs and trim rings. Tough to find ones that fit and aren't crazy expensive though.
    0303sc_07z+1962_chevrolet_impala+right_rear_view.jpg
     
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  36. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    Please tell me that you're running the white walls too!?
     
  37. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Skinny white walls, same as the ones on that car. Think mine are a little taller though. The wide whites are super expensive, plus I don't think they look right on almost anything made after the 50's.
     
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  38. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    My buddy's 60 Biscayne. Has some more tasteful wheels on it now. Original paint that's just been buffed, looks pretty sweet in person.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  39. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Very cool! Not sold on the dubs but still a really nice cruiser. This is what I was thinking for mine (when I have a little extra cash to spend on it), probably 18 front/20 rear setup.
    2017-04-04 12.26.57.png
     
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  40. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, they were a little much. He's got some much more appropriate torq thrust-like something or other on there now. And air bags.
     
  41. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Nice. Yeah, guess I missed your comment about him having more tasteful wheels on it now.
     
  42. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    That's what I pictured on there when talking "gunmetal"!
     
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  43. idget
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    idget Want to pokéman? PM ShortytheFirefighter Staff Member

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  44. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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  45. MidnightImpreza
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    MidnightImpreza Well-Known Member

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    Just saw this thread. Sweet stuff!
     
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