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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Posted this in Introductions to introduce myself but also want to keep/document everything in a thread, even if it is small stuff.

Like I said in my intro, new to this forum and working on novas in general but not new to forums so I'm good there, haha. I also have a truck so usually on CustomGm.com or something of the sort. Enough about that and on to my thread/the story and pictures because everyone loves pictures lol

A little history on the car, it's a 1973 Nova that started it's life as light green metallic in I believe in West Virginia and was taken to Ziebart to be rustproofed at 935 miles (have paper work on it). In 1988 it was repainted the original color and had some dents fixed by Rainbow Paint and body (not sure where but I'll look next time I'm around the paper work and update). From what I have been told (haven't carfaxed/checked/whatever to be positive just going on word of mouth) the original owner was military (according to the second owner that we originally bought the car from) and at some point moved to Shreveport at which time was then sold to an elderly lady who owned it awhile but eventually upgraded to a car with power windows and put the Nova up for sale and that is when/where my family originally became the 3rd owners of the car, around 1993-94ish.






After becoming the owner of the car my dad saved and slowly acquired the parts necessary to restore it. He got the original bumpers re-chromed, bought a parts car to steal door panels and other interior parts off of, replaced all the original weather stripping, emblems, reupholstered interior and many many other things. A friend of the family at the time was an old school body man who worked out of a shop in his back yard and kept the car nearly two years and fixed all dents, removed door trim, and did an incredible job at painting the car. After getting it back my dad did some finishing touches on it such as adding a wooden steering wheel and a few other things a mid-thirty year old deemed appropriate in the mid-90's. Which brings us to these pictures of the car (only ones I can track down as I guess my parents didn't have a camera at the time and before the digital age of smartphones).



During the time of owning the car my dad bought and moved a house that him and my grandfather started restoring themselves, which we all know takes time/money/other sacrifices along the way with the car ending up being one of them. After promising me the car over and over for my 16th birthday my dad sold the car in 99' along with all the parts to build a 383, some rear end parts, and other things to a local guy for $5000 so he could put doors all throughout our house and do a few other finishing touches to get us moved in. Although he loves our house, and I love my dad for the sacrifices he's made to provide for my sister and I, it's been a decision he's always regretted and one I've kind of never let him forget because I wanted that car bad since I was a little kid always wanting and dreaming to drive it but never ever getting the chance other than in my dads lap.

Like I said, he sold it in 99' to a local guy younger than him who got rid of a lot of the parts, moved the shifter from the column to the floor, chunked in some shotty ricer like bucket seat, put a blower on it, removed the ac, and several other things. After all of this he tried selling it back to my dad a year or two later, to which he declined due to price and above said mods. After my dad declined the guy made a killer deal with another local fellow that we will refer to as Bob, that if he would have made my dad we would have probably owned the car again then. Well Bob and his family owned it, drove it a little and then decided to pull the motor to replace it with another that never seemed to find it's way into the car. The car sat for several years with Bob not wanting to sell it and many people trying to buy it including myself trying to inquire about it after I had my license, a job, and a little money put back. Well, one day the car was gone and no one really knew who Bob sold it to so pretty much just gave up the dream of owning a piece of my childhood..........that was until this past Monday, Feb 9th 2015.

On this past Monday a guy from Shreveport who we will call Tom, randomly walked into my family owned furniture store which is about an hour south of Shreveport. Tom walked into our furniture store because it is in a smaller, everyone knows everyone type of town. Tom came in to ask if the secretary of our store knew where someone lived because he was trying to file for a lost title on a car, we'll being a small town she knows said guys mom and called her to tell her, after talking to the mom on the phone she told our secretary "You know that's Terry's old car he's asking about...". Well, my dad keeps a picture of the Nova on the wall of above his desk at our store and while the secretary was on the phone Tom noticed this and asked to see it, after our secretary handed him the picture Tom said, "this is the exact car I have sitting in my driveway that I came down here looking for the guy about...". After figuring all this out Tom left to do a few things and said he would be back to talk to my dad and ask about the car and all.



After Tom returned my dad called me and asked if I'd be interested in buying a Nova and I said I really can't afford it at the moment to which he replied what if I said it's your Nova? Well after talking to my dad and him talking to Tom we set up an appointment to see it that Wednesday here in Shreveport. Of course, last time I saw the car it was in pretty good shape, just missing a motor. Went and looked at the car and it was in a little bit of rougher shape than expected but still super solid minus a fender and taillight panel. Tom agreed to sell the car for what he paid for it instead of asking price due to how bad I still wanted it and he said it would be a hell of a story to tell when I got it built like I wanted it. Also Tom had bought it from a good friend and the person who Bob sold it to, and shortly after buying it a grand national Tom had been wanting came up for sale and the money he got from me buying the Nova is going towards that. Made a year loan with no note on the car that I'll work to pay off quickly and then Tom delivered the car to my dads shop on Friday. I was just able to go down and check it out now that it was mine and in my Dad and I's possession.

Took a bunch of before pictures today so I would have a good base before touching anything.



















and then took out my Porter cable and some Adam's Swirl and Haze, Fine machine polish, and detail spray and did a quick 30-45 minute test just to see how it would turn out and I think that with a little touch up paint and a polish it'll be decent enough for now.









Plans for now:
Immediately pay back car as fast as possible.
Cheapish/small stuff to just mess with the car.
Find an LS drivetrain and supporting parts to get it on the road, then move to whatever. Like I said, goal is to pay for the car and then get it cruising and all "restoring" can come after.


For those that are TL;DR....I bought a car that I've always wanted, happy to have it, and hope I can build it how I want slowly since I don't have Chip Foose and crew at my disposal :rofl:


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Discussion Starter #2
Read around and realized "Car Profiles" isn't the right section for " Build threads". Mods feel free to move this thread to the proper section, I apologize.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Decided to clean on and try and polish the entire car yesterday. Came out nice, could use a few more passes but I wasn't going for perfect, looks 100% better than it did and it's got some wax on it. I might mess with it more one day but for now I'm good. Also pulled old nasty tint off.










Polished the bumpers with some OTC metal polish.

Also pulled the rear seat to look for the build sheet and I believe the seats have been recovered and the sheet wasn't there.


Carpet was a little wet from sitting outside so it leaks somewhere. It'll live inside from now on so I'll track that down later. Trunk does have a few small holes from water sitting but nothing real major.




Few of the things from inside the car like where it was repainted in 88' the original color.




A before and after....
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am truly floored by how nice that turned out!! Time to drive her!!

As was I. I knew I could get a decent shine but wasn't expecting that at all!

Currently taking donations for a drivetrain lol.....no motor or tranny in it or I would have definitely made a block! Had to borrow the money to buy her back since I'm currently finishing up some school/other things with a not so good paying job so paying off my loan then will start saving for a new heart transplant for it.


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Great story, cool car and I love the Pic's. Good luck with the car, it will live forever in your mind as one of the highlights when you get old like me. Jack
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Great story, cool car and I love the Pic's. Good luck with the car, it will live forever in your mind as one of the highlights when you get old like me. Jack

Jack,

Appreciate the comment and you reading the backstory on the car. Glad you like the pic's also. Trying to document everything so I'm sure there will be plenty more pictures.


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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Did a few things today, starting with pulling the cowl to get some trash out. There was a ton of stuff in there.





After that, moved onto the interior. Last update I mentioned the wet/damp carpet which had me nervous so decided to yank the carpet out since it eventually was going to need replacing and I didn't want it in there holding moisture.

Seats out



Pulling the carpet





Carpet pulled




Got to cleaning all the factory backing/gunk off the floor to see what was underneath....



Turns out they are better than some but not as well as I'd had hoped. After finding the carpet damp I had the sinking feeling I would find something though, a few of the pictures I put a light under the car so you could see the holes from the top.










Okay, I've seen some on here JB weld small holes and others cut out and replace for small things after rust treatment/prevention. I'm new to this rust stuff and fixing it and need some advice on what you would do to fix it.

Also, think I should por15 the entire interior floor, etc or go another route? If another route/brand please offer a alternate and why. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Bump....reading/contemplating still on what to go with on the floor as there seems to be many opinions on many things. I just want something that will last on the floor and will stop any rust if there is the slightest bit left from spreading, I'll eventually put sound deadener over whatever coating.

I've read more on JB weld but I know this is frowned upon. I do realize the floors don't warrant an entire pan replacement, should I cut out a small section and weld in a replacement if possible?

I do have a welding machine that was acquired with some trading, basically brand new but doesn't have the accessories and I havnt welded in 7-8 years so it would be me buying money and learning again.

Once again, advice or suggestions on anything you deem I need advice on from reading.


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I didn't see much cancer in your floors so I'd just cut out the really bad spots and weld in patches. I used POR15 on my floors as I had just a little surface rust. Wire wheeled the surface rust off and rolled on the POR15 which is supposed to convert rust and protect bare metal.

I'm also here to tell you that and LS transplant is something to behold but that conversion isnt the cheapest... For me the motor and trans were the cheap and easy parts its the wires and fuel and making it all jive... It might be worth the effort to find a 350/350 combo from the ol' craigs list. Wish I still had my 327 and the Glide that I yanked out... I let that combo go for $800.00...
If you were closer I'd just give you the old drive shaft, but shipping it would be more cost than its worth...

Anyway welcome to the boards and Glad you got "YOUR" Nova back! :devil:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I didn't see much cancer in your floors so I'd just cut out the really bad spots and weld in patches. I used POR15 on my floors as I had just a little surface rust. Wire wheeled the surface rust off and rolled on the POR15 which is supposed to convert rust and protect bare metal.



I'm also here to tell you that and LS transplant is something to behold but that conversion isnt the cheapest... For me the motor and trans were the cheap and easy parts its the wires and fuel and making it all jive... It might be worth the effort to find a 350/350 combo from the ol' craigs list. Wish I still had my 327 and the Glide that I yanked out... I let that combo go for $800.00...

If you were closer I'd just give you the old drive shaft, but shipping it would be more cost than its worth...



Anyway welcome to the boards and Glad you got "YOUR" Nova back! :devil:


Yeah, there's definitely not enough to warrant a full pan after really looking and all so 99% sure a friend and I are going to just use some patches and do exactly as you've mentioned and then use the POR15. Just waiting on funds to allow both.

Agreed on the LS swap but it's something I've always wanted so it might be worth the wait/expense. I'm waiting to sit for my nursing boards again so hopefully in the next few months I'll have those behind me and a better job and can really put back for it. I 100% appreciate your feedback on it though and might have some questions sometime!

Also appreciate the welcome and am super excited to have "my" Nova back. Even if it's just a $200 a month garage ornament at the moment lol



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Discussion Starter #12
Will start off by saying I've done a tonnnn of reading on this site and appreciate many of you guys build threads, knowledge, and even trial and error so the rest of us will know.

With all of that I've gained some knowledge and have a better idea of the direction the go with my nova. Not much has changed, still paying it off and organizing a game plan for when finances allow things to be done.

Have still been debating on pulling out the welding machine and getting a gas setup to practice with. I have a friend who build bagged trucks and good at welding/fabbing up stuff and does quality work, him and i have talked and he said he'd make me a deal If I were to drop it off to him when the time comes, however part of me wants to try and do some myself but we shall see when the time comes.

Sat this weekend aside to work on the nova, was going to take off front fenders to see about rust as well as take off dash pad and rear deck lid but ended up having things come up one day and having to work on my truck another.

Did manage to snag a few pics of main rust spots, other than what I've already shown from the inside and rear taillight panel.

Driver side fender..
ImageUploadedByAG Free1438576091.426304.jpg
ImageUploadedByAG Free1438576111.110981.jpg

Rear passenger infront of wheel..
ImageUploadedByAG Free1438576154.847800.jpg

Driver rear..
ImageUploadedByAG Free1438576234.440993.jpg

Driver side fender is definitely the worst. Hoping to not run into some of the nightmares you all have.

TL; DR: Just saying thanks to the threads on here and posting a few pics to have saved in one place. Thanks to you who read and comment!




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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
73' Nova Project

Receipt from original transaction. As mentioned, when my dad owned the car it was all in a plastic bag but when we got it back bits and pieces were missing, one of the owners of the car after my dad found this and dropped it by to him to give back to me.

As you can see car came from West Virginia from a dealership that's still open today. A 73' Vega station wagon was traded in on it.








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Very cool and lucky at the same time, not many of the Vega engines ever made it past 50,000 miles. Once everyone caught on about the engine, trading them in with 40,000 or so became the rule of thumb....:DJack
 

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Very cool and lucky at the same time, not many of the Vega engines ever made it past 50,000 miles. Once everyone caught on about the engine, trading them in with 40,000 or so became the rule of thumb....:DJack

Super lucky! Figured that paperwork was lost for good. Benefit of small town living I suppose. I need to drop the tank and see if that sheet is there sometime.

Very cool man!

Definitely agree! Finances/time constraints aren't allowing for much of anything to be done to the car so little things like this bring some joy for now.


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Really cool read and glad you got back a piece of your family history. I think you should attempt the welding and if need be get your buddy to give you some tips and possibly help out. When it's all done you'll feel even more connected to that car. Looking forward to hearing and following along. Best of luck.:yes:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Really cool read and glad you got back a piece of your family history. I think you should attempt the welding and if need be get your buddy to give you some tips and possibly help out. When it's all done you'll feel even more connected to that car. Looking forward to hearing and following along. Best of luck.:yes:


Thanks!....I think that's what we are going to end up doing on some of the welding once the time comes where we both can get down to the car.


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Discussion Starter #20
Got a Grant steering wheel for the car for Christmas. It's identical to the one my dad had in it when he owned the car. He got it for Christmas from my grandma one year for the car and he wanted the car to have that steering wheel back in it so he surprised me with one for Christmas this year, it'll be awhile before it's installed though lol





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