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Projects '63 Riviera project begins! Another reason not to finish the T'Bird...

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by flynbrian48, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. I'm glad you won't need to alter the hood.. of course the ornament could disappear when you loose the door handles.. :eek: :)

    The colour was close in the pic I found, but I tweaked it a wee bit to look more like the '63 Sting Ray Silver Blue - hint, hint, heh, heh.

    Dave
     
  2. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1415645018.936328.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1415645036.535845.jpg

    Holy cow. These were not built to easily come apart. I struggled for an afternoon to get front fenders off, to discover the inner fenders and core support is a unit, spot welded together. I have no place store a piece that big and awkward, no easy way to get it off with the garage half full of finished cars. So, I Sawzalled the inner fenders free from the core support and will make mounting tabs to mount them to the core support when it goes back together. Next up, bolt engine and trans together and fab up mounts.


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    Last edited: Nov 10, 2014
  3. Woody's Hot Rods
    Joined: Sep 15, 2007
    Posts: 209

    Woody's Hot Rods
    Member

    I can't wait to see what you do with the Riv. I love these cars.
     
  4. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Whew. It's tight, but I mounted the trans and shoved the engine back in the chassis, and it fits. Barely. I'm going to either go after the trans tunnel with a big hammer, or cut it out and make a new one, because it lacks what looks like about half an inch of being able to go up high enough in the chassis. One more notch in the crossmember, this time for the drivers side manifold, where there was a blank lug for an EGR, and the a little more work on the manifold in this spot (maybe cutting the bulge off and brazing a patch on), and it'll settle in where it should. As it is, it's about 3/4" to far to the left, and down about 1/2" at the rear to set where it needs to be.
    I sold our Spartan Manor travel trailer, and will start on it's replacement soon, and the T'Bird is going to get some love, so I'll finish up the work fitting the engine/trans in the Riv and let it set until spring until after the T'Bird gets finished. I wanted to get the engine in, mainly to reassure myself it would actually fit in the chassis, and with a pair of mounts and trans crossmember, I can call that job DONE, and wait for spring. IMG_3836.jpg IMG_3839.jpg IMG_3837.jpg
     
  5. man rivs are sweet rides cant wait to see the finish product
     
  6. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Well, don't hold your breath, because work is going to come to a grinding, screeching halt now, as I'm going to focus on finishing my '59 T'Bird now that the engine is setting in the Riv (and out of the way!).
     
  7. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1416278895.488114.jpg

    And the 'Bird moves front and center...


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  8. captain scarlet
    Joined: Jun 11, 2008
    Posts: 2,415

    captain scarlet
    Member
    from Detroit

    Great - hooked I am looking forward to see the 'Bird finished

    Martyn


    Singlefingerspeedshop.com. Detroit
     
  9. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    I had set a deadline for AutoRama, but quickly abandoned that with this summers foolishness centered around the "free" motorhome, and subsequent Riviera purchase (which was originally going to get the 454 from the derelict but low milage coach, until my wife said she liked it and wanted me to build it for her). Now, perhaps I can push that back until August and debut the car at Relix Riot. That seems far enough off in the future to be good...
     
  10. Imperial66
    Joined: Jul 16, 2012
    Posts: 76

    Imperial66
    Member
    from NC

    Just to save you a little time and money, the LS3 intake won't fit the LM7 5.3 from the avalanche. They run the cathedral port heads, like the LS1&2. You'll need a car water pump also, the angle on the truck pump neck interferes with the TB on a car intake. Holley has some new brackets out for less than 300.00 that lets you use the truck ALT,PS pump,and AC compressor(if you choose to have AC)
     
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  11. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Thanks, but I think I'm OK now. I've got the motor/trans setting in it, and the hood will clear by millimeters without changing the intake. Thanks for the tip on the Holly brackets, it needs a new alt. bracket to drop it, because it sticks up a bit higher than the intake, and the AC has to move up to the upper right. I do want AC, probably a Vintage Air.
     
  12. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1418265462.404242.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1418265479.570687.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1418265496.321155.jpg
    The stainless headers came today! The oil pan came last week and I have a new pair of urethane engine mounts. Merry Christmas to me!


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  13. Pretty nice looking headers, Brian. Who makes them?

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  14. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    I hate to admit I bought off-shore parts on eBay, but damn, they're pretty, they fit, and they were 149.00 with shipping. I like the dirt and grass still stuck to the frame and upper control arms too...
     
  15. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    IMG_4053.jpg IMG_4055.jpg
    Unlike my usual estimating and precision guesswork, I figured I'd better check to see if the hood really did clear the intake and alternator before I pull the engine/trans and roll the car out to clean the frame and then weld the engine mounts solid. This afternoon while filler set up on the T'bird, I hung the core support and right front fender, then pulled the hood down off the roof for a real life fit check. I had to trim the inner hood panel to clear the alternator, and while I was at it I clearance the bolt boss on the alt. housing 1/4" for good measure. There's half an inch between the alternator and the hood skin, so the answer to the burning question, "Will a 5.3 Vortec fit under the hood of a '63 Riviera without cutting the hood or buying expensive new parts?", is a resounding YES!
     
  16. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    At the Gilmore Museum today, and guess what's new? Yup, a '63 Riv in light blue metallic. Pictur this dropped about 2", Supremes and skinny whites. Boom. Done. Who wouldn't their wife driving that? ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1421109762.227133.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1421109779.793655.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1421109826.860026.jpg


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  17. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    10429282_10206120036422549_4968868814652645207_n.jpg Heated up the shop this morning (it -11 outside, 28 in the shop) and got the crossmember boxed in (sectioned to clear the pan) and motor mounts welded up. Now, cut the center link apart, flip the center, drop it a little, and it should clear too. I hope...
     
  18. DAMN i miss those Riviera days.
    8 years on this one
    much luck Scan 121430001.jpg Scan 121430004.jpg
     
  19. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Nice! Those Radir wheels look great on the car.
     
  20. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    I spent yesterday doing unglamorous, un-photogenic but important stuff on the Riviera. (Anybody remember me saying I wasn't going to work on it until the T'bird is done?) I pulled the engine/trans, and put the new, shallower sump oil pan on it, courtesy of GM. It's the LS engine swap pan, intended for early 60's big GM chassis.

    I knew the center-link wouldn't clear, but it wasn't as tough as I thought. The link had a factory bend that swept the center of the bar about 3 inches to the rear, it putting smack in the middle of the sump. I cut the center of the link out, just behind the tie rod mount boss, ground the cut off ends to points, and with the each cut off side mounted, to the frame and steering box, tacked the center section in rotated roughly 180 degrees, then pulled it out and welded the joint full. I'll make one more pass, grind things down and plate the joint. Not that I don't trust my welds, but there's room for a little reinforcement, and on steering stuff, it'll make me feel better.

    While the engine was out, I finished up the welds on the engine mounts, and sorted through the bag of fasteners from the salvage yard that supplied the engine to find the three bolts for the torque converter, and bolted the engine and trans together. Then I put the starter on. Three times, because I missed plugging a sensor in behind the starter, then the little plastic dust shield. This is why it takes me so long to do anything, because I do everything at least three times.

    I'm off work today and tomorrow too, and hope to get the front spindles swapped, using the '94 Caprice spindles/disk brakes, and maybe actually work on the T'bird. The Rivi will then be up on 4 wheels, chassis work DONE, and I can get the suspension stuff blasted, frame stripped and painted forward of the firewall. That'll make it a car, not a pile of parts. IMG_2824.jpg IMG_4281.jpg
     
  21. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1422063261.258422.jpg ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1422063278.375122.jpg
    Got the steering center link finished up and it clears the pan nicely. I took one and half coils off the front springs in order see the ride height mocked up. ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1422063626.325277.jpg


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  22. I love your riv. Is the caprice spindles and brakes a bolt in swap? I may have to do that to mine
     
  23. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Turns out, no. Both ball joint tapers are different, as are the tie rods. So, not as easy as I'd hoped, but the stock brakes are HUGE and the drums aren't scored, shoes look new, I'll just rebuild the cylinders and run new lines. It seemed like a good idea...
     
  24. OahuEli
    Joined: Dec 27, 2008
    Posts: 5,050

    OahuEli
    Member
    from Hawaii

    Yay!
     
  25. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    I may have lied a little right there....
     
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  26. nrgwizard
    Joined: Aug 18, 2006
    Posts: 1,275

    nrgwizard
    Member
    from Minn. uSA

    Hey, Brian;
    Stupid Q, maybe, but since I don't know : Is it just barely possible to ream the Caprice b-j taper(s) to the correct Riv b-j taper, & ditto w/the tie rods? Or use/mate the Caprice b-j on the Riv A-arms? Don't most replacement b-j bolt-on? I suppose if the hole(s) were too large to start with, they could be tig'd 1st? I do get that when reaming, the new taper usually means the b-j &/or tie-rod (etc) sits lower in the new application.
    Marcus...
     
  27. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    Not stupid at all, the ball joint taper on the Chev spindle is smaller lower, as is the tie rod. The lower, on closer inspection and putting calipers on, seems the same. So, yes, I could just ream the steering arm and upper ball joint. My initial enthusiasm for this was fueled mainly by wanting the Buick brakes for the front of a '27 highboy project I'm gathering parts for, but, I kinda don't want the Riv to get out of hand.
     
  28. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1423257283.635215.jpg took my wife Kim to the Gilmore Museum to see their '63 Riv, in light blue. She approves of the color, so we're settled on that. It's her car so she gets to pick ;-)
     
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  29. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,046

    flynbrian48
    Member

    IMG_4419.jpg IMG_4420.jpg I took the front suspension parts to a local DIY media blast business today and for 20 bucks cleaned up all the parts. After that, I made a parts hanging rack from three ladders, primed and painted all the stuff. While the paint dried, I pulled the front bumper off the long neglected '59 T'bird, did the final body work on the panel between bumper and hood, and primed the back of the bumper over the weld seams. Tomorrow I'll should be able to get ALL the body work finished up on it (the T'bird), and start DA'ing the little bit of remaining old paint off. Progress!
     
  30. nailhead terry
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 1,455

    nailhead terry
    Member

    ADD OCD everything has to be perfect but not long. I have the same problem .I have a chopped shoebox in the works then I decided to work on my hiboy project .Now I found a 58 fiat tv roadster that we want to widen and put on a factory five cobra chassis a rollover car I bought. The 347 and tko are in my 32 but a LS may go in the chassis and in the fiat ! just having fun
     
    flynbrian48 likes this.

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