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Old 19th-June-2017, 06:30 PM   #1
jordan89
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Suggestion Before Tear-down

Hi guys,

I haven't been very active on this forum, but that's only because I have been busy collecting parts for my 72' Nova.

Anyhow, I have an LQ4 with some goodies, and a T56 that I am getting ready to drop into place. I will be using Holley's x-body swap system for this, and will make sure I include lots of pics when I get started. I am planning to start tearing the car down this week, which leads me to my question:

Before starting the tear-down, what do you guys suggest I do/look out for?

A few plans for the car:
1. Strip, clean, coat subframe
2. Install Tubular Control Arms
3. Front disc break conversion (Still trying to decide what brand/system to use)
4. LSX/T56
5. TANKS Inc. fuel tank, sender, and pump
6. Smooth Firewall


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Old 20th-June-2017, 01:46 PM   #2
jordan89
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Did I post this in the correct section? I thought I would have had a reply by now.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 20th-June-2017, 01:49 PM   #3
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Lots of patience. Builds don't always go as planned.
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Old 20th-June-2017, 02:16 PM   #4
Ls68nova

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Install subframe connectors and patience for sure. It might be planned out in your mind perfectly but just about all the time something happens


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Old 20th-June-2017, 04:16 PM   #5
jordan89
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Thanks for the advice guys. I will post lots of pics as I go.
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Old 20th-June-2017, 04:50 PM   #6
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Make sure you bag & tag every nut, bolt & screw even if you think your going to replace them. I think being slow and patient is better then doing it twice.

PS: take lots of pic's if nothin else but for your own reference.
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Old 20th-June-2017, 05:07 PM   #7
jordan89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rebob View Post
Make sure you bag & tag every nut, bolt & screw even if you think your going to replace them. I think being slow and patient is better then doing it twice.

PS: take lots of pic's if nothin else but for your own reference.

Thanks for the reminder! I will take a trip to the dollar store for some zip-lock bags. I will take LOTS of pictures for sure.
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Old 21st-June-2017, 11:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rebob View Post
Make sure you bag & tag every nut, bolt & screw even if you think your going to replace them. I think being slow and patient is better then doing it twice.

PS: take lots of pic's if nothin else but for your own reference.
What he said. Make sure your wallet is fat.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 10:59 AM   #9
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That car is screening for a big block lol! But seriously take your time and double your estimate to do the job. Things always come up.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 11:13 AM   #10
jordan89
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Thanks for the advice guys. I've got the majority of the parts already, including an LQ4 engine with 243 heads, FAST intake, cam, etc... I also picked up a stage 3 T56. I have the Holley plates, x-member, oil pan, and headers.

As for the suspension, I've also picked up tubular control arms and other goodies. I'm still looking into disc brake upgrade systems. I'm stuck deciding on this because I want to lower my car, but have been reading up on the subject between using drop springs, or using the 2" drop spindle. I really want to lean towards the spindle route, but just can't decide. I am currently looking at CPP's conversion kit:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Chevelle-Nov...53.m1438.l2649

and have also looked at this:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/GM-Front-Dis...53.m1438.l2649

I read that drop spindles from other manufactures were an issue back in 2012, but am not sure if it's still the case now?
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 11:15 AM   #11
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I have torn the front off of my car twice, once in the late '90s including a full subframe removal and once more recently to do an LS swap. You learn a lot about a car taking apart, that's for sure! If it's never been apart before, I would start the project by going around and spraying a little penetrating oil on all the bolts that hold the body together and to the subframe. Do it a few times over the course of a few days to give it a chance to soak in - you will have a much easier time taking things apart if you do this.

For the body, start with hood. Match mark the hood and the hinges so you have a rough idea of where to put them together and then remove the hood from the hinges. Unless you want to clean them up, you can leave the hinges attached to the fenders. Next remove the front bumper (four bolts on the sides of the frame). Then remove the grill assembly with the hood latch and the filler panel still attached. Then drop the inner fenders and finally you can remove the fenders themselves. The fenders will have alignment shims at most of the bolt locations (including the "hidden" bolts that are behind the front of the doors) and you will want to keep them with those locations to get a rough sheetmetal alignment when you reassemble.

As you go along, I recommend replacing each bolt back into it's nut/threaded location right after removing parts. This way they don't get lost and you don't have to worry about bagging/labeling. For example, when you take the hood off the hinges, put the four bolts that held it to the hinge back into the hood a few turns so they stay with the hood and don't get lost.

There will be a lot of little parts and wiring to come off as you go along. I recommend labeling the ends of wires unless you've become very familiar with everything. Plan on the car sitting for a while - smoothing the firewall and doing an LS swap could take months or years depending on how hard you work at it.

This is really just some starting advice. Reach out for help along the way. I highly recommend starting a build thread and posting photos as you go along - you'll be amazed at how much help people will chime in with, not to mention how much you'll be able to help others through your experience.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 11:21 AM   #12
jordan89
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This is great! I will definitely follow your advice (Printing now lol). I've already soaked the bolts with penetrating oil, and hope that it isn't too bad since it's a California car. I will most likely definitely have to reach out for advice, so thanks for offering. My camera is ready to go.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBandit View Post
I have torn the front off of my car twice, once in the late '90s including a full subframe removal and once more recently to do an LS swap. You learn a lot about a car taking apart, that's for sure! If it's never been apart before, I would start the project by going around and spraying a little penetrating oil on all the bolts that hold the body together and to the subframe. Do it a few times over the course of a few days to give it a chance to soak in - you will have a much easier time taking things apart if you do this.

For the body, start with hood. Match mark the hood and the hinges so you have a rough idea of where to put them together and then remove the hood from the hinges. Unless you want to clean them up, you can leave the hinges attached to the fenders. Next remove the front bumper (four bolts on the sides of the frame). Then remove the grill assembly with the hood latch and the filler panel still attached. Then drop the inner fenders and finally you can remove the fenders themselves. The fenders will have alignment shims at most of the bolt locations (including the "hidden" bolts that are behind the front of the doors) and you will want to keep them with those locations to get a rough sheetmetal alignment when you reassemble.

As you go along, I recommend replacing each bolt back into it's nut/threaded location right after removing parts. This way they don't get lost and you don't have to worry about bagging/labeling. For example, when you take the hood off the hinges, put the four bolts that held it to the hinge back into the hood a few turns so they stay with the hood and don't get lost.

There will be a lot of little parts and wiring to come off as you go along. I recommend labeling the ends of wires unless you've become very familiar with everything. Plan on the car sitting for a while - smoothing the firewall and doing an LS swap could take months or years depending on how hard you work at it.

This is really just some starting advice. Reach out for help along the way. I highly recommend starting a build thread and posting photos as you go along - you'll be amazed at how much help people will chime in with, not to mention how much you'll be able to help others through your experience.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 11:26 AM   #13
TheBandit
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jordan89 View Post
Thanks for the advice guys. I've got the majority of the parts already, including an LQ4 engine with 243 heads, FAST intake, cam, etc... I also picked up a stage 3 T56. I have the Holley plates, x-member, oil pan, and headers.

As for the suspension, I've also picked up tubular control arms and other goodies. I'm still looking into disc brake upgrade systems. I'm stuck deciding on this because I want to lower my car, but have been reading up on the subject between using drop springs, or using the 2" drop spindle. I really want to lean towards the spindle route, but just can't decide. I am currently looking at CPP's conversion kit:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Chevelle-Nov...53.m1438.l2649

and have also looked at this:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/GM-Front-Dis...53.m1438.l2649

I read that drop spindles from other manufactures were an issue back in 2012, but am not sure if it's still the case now?
Another piece of advice.... don't buy stuff until you need it. This may sound silly, but hear me out. I can't count the number of times I bought parts that ended up sitting around for months or years before they got installed, if they got used at all. Many times plans changed and I regretted my original purchase. I strongly suggest you focus on one thing at a time. Outline some basic stages of your project and don't buy parts until you get there UNLESS you are scrounging for used parts and things don't come along often.

If I were you, I wouldn't buy anything else until I had the car torn down and I was ready to start on the firewall. Get what you need to do that job and then start thinking about the next step. If you are going to do suspension before engine, then okay, go ahead and start ordering springs, arms, bushings, etc, but don't start ordering that stuff until you absolutely have to because in the meantime you can continue to read and learn about the options and make a better decision when it's time to pull out the wallet.

Regarding drop spindles, I would not go that route. You can lower the car pretty far with just springs and drop spindles can cause issues with wheel clearance. Also drop springs like those from Hotchkiss will typically be stiffer, which is preferable for handling. Alternatively you can do a coilover conversion which gives additional adjustability for ride height. I modified AFCO spring adjusters and combined them with stiffer AFCO springs to get an adjustable ride height - that is another option if you want a relatively inexpensive path.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 11:30 AM   #14
jordan89
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Amazing advice, and just what I was looking for! I was actually looking into a coil-over setup, but will look into the springs. I'm going to start taking things apart tonight, after work, so I will follow your advice for sure!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBandit View Post
Another piece of advice.... don't buy stuff until you need it. This may sound silly, but hear me out. I can't count the number of times I bought parts that ended up sitting around for months or years before they got installed, if they got used at all. Many times plans changed and I regretted my original purchase. I strongly suggest you focus on one thing at a time. Outline some basic stages of your project and don't buy parts until you get there UNLESS you are scrounging for used parts and things don't come along often.

If I were you, I wouldn't buy anything else until I had the car torn down and I was ready to start on the firewall. Get what you need to do that job and then start thinking about the next step. If you are going to do suspension before engine, then okay, go ahead and start ordering springs, arms, bushings, etc, but don't start ordering that stuff until you absolutely have to because in the meantime you can continue to read and learn about the options and make a better decision when it's time to pull out the wallet.

Regarding drop spindles, I would not go that route. You can lower the car pretty far with just springs and drop spindles can cause issues with wheel clearance. Also drop springs like those from Hotchkiss will typically be stiffer, which is preferable for handling. Alternatively you can do a coilover conversion which gives additional adjustability for ride height. I modified AFCO spring adjusters and combined them with stiffer AFCO springs to get an adjustable ride height - that is another option if you want a relatively inexpensive path.
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Old 22nd-June-2017, 05:39 PM   #15
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Take plenty of pics and video before you disassemble parts as well. It will prove to be a blessing during reassembly.
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