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Number Tew

My Boss Lady's 2002 Trans Am Collector Edition

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12 hours ago, 95opal said:

Yes sir, on vacation until April. When is the next meet or show lol

 

Wish I would have known.  The boss just went to Festivals of Speed over the weekend which was apparently really cool.  I was not able to make it.

 

12 hours ago, Psychorugby said:

 

FL2k, Silver Springs, and Wanna Go Fast all in January!

 

These are all true.  The Silver Springs show is a big deal this year because it's supposed to be the last one.

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Because most people probably don't care to have a how to do stuff on an F-Body thread here, I made a nice writeup for installing an Android headunit into the Firebird.  I highly recommend the head unit, for anyone interested!

 

https://ls1tech.com/forums/stereo-electronics/1888509-joying-android-head-unit-into-4th-gen-back-up-camera-pic-heavy.html#post19800508

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Lol, your ls1tech write up crashes me iPhone 

 

🤔

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2 hours ago, White95 said:

Lol, your ls1tech write up crashes me iPhone 

 

🤔

It's pic heavy lolol!

 

Look at it from a real computer if you have to ;)

  • Haha 1

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Alright so kind of a mini update on the Trans Am – as most people know, these cars came with sealed beam headlights – think old Jeeps, or old GMC trucks.  Sealed beam lights are garbage and leave much to be desired.  LMC Truck makes kits that allow the use of a normal 9006 headlight bulb in inner and outer (brights and regular).  The kit also does away with the fluting which adds a lot more clarity.

 

Before anyone asks, we have not driven the car in the dark since doing them so I have no idea how much better output is yet, but it does seem much better in the driveway testing.

 

The nice thing is this should make it easy to switch to a higher quality bulb whenever we want to.  Some people put HID bulbs in this kit but I am not about that life haha.

 

Anyhow, here are some pics:

 

42244563472_a57621390e_z.jpg

 

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Before

 

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Also, see where we did the black decal on the bird?  Also did black on the Trans Am lettering on the side and in the rear bumper, but those are not pictured.

 

Thanks for looking!

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Looks much better! I can't believe a car that new, of that prestige when new, came with sealed beam headlights lol. Worthy upgrade for sure.

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6 hours ago, 95riosnake said:

Looks much better! I can't believe a car that new, of that prestige when new, came with sealed beam headlights lol. Worthy upgrade for sure.

 

 

Then you may be shocked to find out the Corvettes came with them too!

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Ford used them in the E series vans up till a few years ago when they stopped building them. 

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17 hours ago, Number Tew said:

 

 

Then you may be shocked to find out the Corvettes came with them too!

 

I do remember that now, one of my (rich) friends in highschool was given an 02 Corvette convertible as a graduation present, and I remember now that I was surprised at the headlights. I did always like the amber running lights on the C5's though.

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On 5/24/2018 at 6:21 AM, 95riosnake said:

 

I do remember that now, one of my (rich) friends in highschool was given an 02 Corvette convertible as a graduation present, and I remember now that I was surprised at the headlights. I did always like the amber running lights on the C5's though.

 

 

Must be a tough life to be handed a vette :)

 

I want a C5 Z06 real bad.

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9 hours ago, Number Tew said:

 

 

Must be a tough life to be handed a vette :)

 

I want a C5 Z06 real bad.

If you search hard enough you can find em in good condition for around $15k. I know a guy who got a base model for $9k. 

 

Id take a z if I could find a good deal one day. 

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a neighbor of mine has a cherry condition 94 300zx turbo I have been wanting to get a ride in.

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20 hours ago, ttocs said:

a neighbor of mine has a cherry condition 94 300zx turbo I have been wanting to get a ride in.

 

I've never been in one but have always wanted to.  They are so hard to keep running though!

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keep running in a straight line according to him.  I guess with the power, all wheel drive and 4 wheel steering it was a PIA to keep aligned.  He said he got a hold of some control arms a guy was machining a while back and its helped to fix it.  If that is the case then he just doesn't like to drive it much them but just the shape of them always got me somehow.

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On 6/4/2018 at 12:47 AM, ttocs said:

keep running in a straight line according to him.  I guess with the power, all wheel drive and 4 wheel steering it was a PIA to keep aligned.  He said he got a hold of some control arms a guy was machining a while back and its helped to fix it.  If that is the case then he just doesn't like to drive it much them but just the shape of them always got me somehow.

 

I feel the same way!

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the TA...she doesn't start anymore lmao it's been sitting too long while we waited to figure out the water in the headlight issue...

 

i hate/love this car 😛

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it got jealous of all the work you did on the house.  I bet you put an equal amount of time and money into the car now and it will start.  Of course then the stang will be jealous and demand some attention after seeing all this.  

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On 7/10/2018 at 5:26 PM, ttocs said:

it got jealous of all the work you did on the house.  I bet you put an equal amount of time and money into the car now and it will start.  Of course then the stang will be jealous and demand some attention after seeing all this.  

 

Haha Scott!  I bet you're right.  The not starting issue is a little odd.  I don't think it has sat too long and the battery was brand new.  I hope it doesn't have some sort of electrical gremlin draining the battery.  Once we get the new headlights in she should be driving it more often.  LMC truck said they would send us a new set because the current ones are obviously defective.

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Alright the new headlights came in – here is a shot of the defective one:

 

43720031292_3f1534714c_k.jpg

 

28832336337_c3625224ec_k.jpg

 

And here with the new one in place.

 

41959876170_09fc3e6ce7_k.jpg

 

Yay, vision!  Of course, after doing this installation, now the headlight on the driver side no longer pops up.  Soooooo, we have that to figure out.  I have to check the fuses inside because all of the underhood ones are good.  But, for future proofing, she went ahead and ordered some brass gears for the headlight motors.  I will hopefully be installing those shortly.

 

She also ordered some new visors.  As you can see these get this floppy eared deal.  It’s because they have basically cardboard inside them that has deteriorated.  Luckily Hawks makes some really nice replacements:

 

43074058034_d50b5fde20_k.jpg

 42887041755_039f9891c2_k.jpg

 

 

We are trying to get everything sorted out with this because the plan is to take it to the F-Body beach bash in October, so it needs to be ready for a road trip.  Which means I will probably be doing a catch can setup and re-redoing the vacuum setup to make it look pretty.  I don’t think we will have time to lower it by then but we will see.  We have struts to do since I already replaced the rear shocks.  Woo GM!

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Quick update on the CETA:

 

In this update I will cover how to remove the front bumper since I could not find any good guides.

 

The other day I swapped the headlights because the first round from LMC had some issues.  Put the new ones in and then the lights stopped popping up, but the bulbs would work.

 

I did some research and found that the plugs for the headlight motors commonly get corroded which causes a number of issues.  So I pulled the plugs apart and found:

 

42440325040_05e60f7bef_b.jpg

 

As you can see, the plugs are toast.  Hard to see in the picture but three of the five “males” are missing entirely (because they ended up “stuck” in the female side….for eternity….maybe I shouldn’t have fixed this, not a bad life).

 

If you are super ultra-observant, you recognize that I am way away from the car in this picture, so, you guessed it, I have already replaced these bits.  So here is that:

 

First step, order some new plugs.  Big disclaimer here – I did not test to see if the new plugs would work with the old ones before I threw the old ones away.  Sorry.  I figure if your plugs are in that sort of condition, you may as well replace both.

 

AC DELCO PT1251 and AC DELCO PT1015 are five lead connectors, and they plug into one another, and are more than up for this task.  Though I did not attempt to plug into the old ones, they look identical.

 

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When I put these together I used copious amounts of Dielectric grease to further aid in corrosion prevention.  Honestly, probably used too much.  Most of it came out when I plugged them in.  Don’t be dumb like me, use a reasonable amount.

 

44247635841_806dfec249_b.jpg

 

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I also found this stuff at a store.  It claims to be liquid electrical tape.  I imagine it won’t hurt to further seal this unit.

 

43530472184_877a1b794f_b.jpg

 

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This is after a coat with that liquid tape.  It has a Plastidip sort of consistency.  I did two coats.  Take note, none of the wires were color coded anyhow.  I imagine having some black on them won’t make any difference down the line.  I also ran a zip tie (not tied) through the plug connection.  GM typically has those little plastic pieces to “lock” plugs together.  If there was supposed to be one, it was gone.  So, I made my own.

 

So, in the midst of doing this project, I decided there was no way I was going to effectively splice these new units in while the bumper was still in place.  I could not find a good write up on how to remove the front bumper from a 97-02 Trans Am.  So, I decided to make one, after much cursing, here you go:

 

30380850958_b56e6f57ab_b.jpg

 

Manually raise the headlights (I had to because, well, you know, broken.  But, you could use the method of letting the motors raise the lights then unhooking the battery.)

 

Remove the headlight bezels.  Not ultimately necessary but 6 little screws that are easy to get to can make your life much easier.

 

Go ahead and raise the car and put it on jack stands.

 

Apparently this bolt is a Firebird thing, and is not found on the Camaro.  It is beside each headlight and needs a 7mm socket or nut driver to remove.  I would do it first so you don’t forget.  This is much easier without the plastic around the lights:

 

30380853988_b44f48851e_b.jpg

 

Use a trim tool or screwdriver to remove the three tabs on top and the three on the bottom.

 

29312160617_629d8e0f5c_b.jpg

 

Remove the bolts for the “Air Deflectors” on the underside.  I believe it is five bolts on each side that need to be removed.  10mm socket on an electric impact works great here.  But, you can do it by hand.

 

Using the space from the deflector to see through, locate these two nuts on either side.  I needed a ¼” drive universal joint, deep well socket, and some extensions to effectively get to them.   You might not.  A swivel deep well may have done the trick.

 

At this time, I removed the bulb from the turn signal and driving lights.

 

44247643331_e21bf55fb0_b.jpg

 

Next, you will need to remove the forward facing bolt from either side.  Don’t be like me and forget this bolt, pulling on the bumper wondering why it won’t come off.  It is a pain to get to.  It would probably be easier if you removed the front wheels and peeled the liner back a bit.  I of course fought with it with the wheel in place.

 

You may find yourself looking under the headlights wondering what the “stud” facing forward is for.  That is this bolt. 

 

29312167197_69b301ab21_b.jpg

 

A gentle pull and the bumper should come right off.  Install is the reverse of the removal.  Of course, if you’re like me (again) you should have a friend help you, because the body lines will probably not be right after you do this, so you may need some help adjusting.

 

As you can see in the next photo, there is ample room to work to do some splicing in this area now.  You can even see the corrosion in the plugs from this distance.

 

Some of you recall removing the AIR system.  I thought now would be a good time to finish the removal.  Shed some weight, gain some room, and get rid of this large unsightly hose:

 

44247646571_c6c59c435a_b.jpg

 

Added blur for effect.  (I was in a hurry!)

 

44199046022_95b56f1727_b.jpg

 

I removed the three bolts holding it into the bracket, and then removed the bracket.  I replaced the bolts for the bracket back into the holes because who knows, maybe one day that will be a great spot for an oil cooler or something.

 

42440327270_b18517cc7e_b.jpg

 

30380860288_ef6f504b03_b.jpg

 

Looks like I did not get a finished picture.  Either way, with the added length for the new plugs, I was able to move the plug further into the vehicle, near where the AIR system was.  This should help keep it out of the elements.  I also wrapped up and tied the existing air plug, because I am always one of those “just in case” people.

 

The connections were made with the weather seal kind of butt connectors with heat shrink, then taped over.  If I could solder well I might have, but I am terrible.  I will say, with the bumper off there is enough room for a skilled person to solder.  I would have caught the car on fire.


Whilst performing this repair, I found that the headlight motors have been replaced.  They have the door that is bolted on instead of glued.  That is good peace of mind, since it is a much better design.

 

Thanks for looking!

 

Should have some stuff coming up soon in preparation for the F-Body beach bash!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alright time for a quick update.  Took the car to Myrtle Beach for the F-Body beach bash.  I was a bit nervous taking it on a thousand mile trip but it worked out great.  Only issue we really uncovered was the A/C would start out blowing strong, then it would slowly dwindle to almost nothing.  

 

I pulled out the blower motor and cleaned out the leaves but that made no difference.  Through research we determined it may be the evaporator freezing from improper Freon levels.  This seemed likely because I could turn off the A/C and use the vent only and it would blow cold for a while, and slowly get stronger blowing, essentially thawing out the frozen area.  So once in Myrtle Beach we got the Freon vacuumed down and filled, though on the return trip it continued to do the same thing.  So, I’m stumped.

 

We also noticed some water coming in on the T-Tops when we washed the car.  It looks like the seal that goes onto the middle T separator track thingy is possibly mis-shaped.  I plan to attack that ASAP.  I will also be lubricating the rest of the seals.  The driver’s window might need some adjustment because at speed it makes some noise and it seems to let water in as well.  Nothing like a trip to find issues!

 

Anyhow, onto the rest of the update:

 

Prior to leaving I installed a Mighty Mouse Solutions catch can.  The piece seems to be very high quality.  I have not yet checked it to see if we’re getting any oil – either way it’s a nice unit and needed to be done.

 

The one I ordered:

 

https://www.mightymousesolutions.com/product-page/4th-gen-f-body-mild

 

Pics:

 

43478323810_cacfd59869_z.jpg

 

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The Beach Bash was great, and the people at Hawks were awesome.  While at the car show I purchased and installed the Strano master cylinder brace.  The part is very high quality, install is very simple.  One of my biggest complaints with the car thus far is the stopping ability compared to other vehicles we have.  This changed that IMMENSELY.  By far the biggest improvement I’ve ever seen from any part that installs in minutes.  On the way back to the hotel I had to slam the brakes and it felt like the rear end lifted off the ground.  Great!

 

We also ordered a set of subframe connectors, though I know there are mixed reviews on how necessary they are.  I also ordered a set of UMI lowering springs.

 

The parts that we ordered/installed:

 

http://www.stranoparts.com/partdetails.php?PartID=1466&CategoryID=269&ModelID=7

 

from Hawks: http://www.hawksmotorsports.com/strano-brake-master-cylinder-brace-93-2002-camaro-firebird/

 

SFCs: http://www.hawksmotorsports.com/hawks-sinister-93-02-camaro-firebird-weld-in-subframe-connectors-boxed/

 

Springs: http://www.hawksmotorsports.com/camaro-firebird-1993-2002-lowering-spring-kit-1-25-1-5-lowering-umi-performance/

 

(I have new shocks to put in at the house already)

 

So all of those parts should be installed soon!

 

During our time in South Carolina we drove the car around a bit and took some pics.  We did not do the Autocross (though I really wanted to) mostly because we wanted to make sure we could make it 500 miles back home.  We all know stuff breaks when you start having fun.  The event looked awesome.  Drag racing got cancelled because of damage from Hurricane Florence.

She ended up placing in the car show, and it was the only CETA that we saw.  I will say, there were probably more deserving cars at the show, but she was really happy to win something.  Most people probably did not realize there’s almost 130k on the clock!  Either way, it was tons of fun, here are some shots from the trip.

 

Thanks for looking:

 

Bracket pics and install:

 

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Touchless Car Wash!

 

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On a side note, if you’ve never been to Myrtle Beach – I am pretty sure you could eat at a different breakfast place, seafood buffet for lunch and an Italian restaurant for dinner every single day and not eat at the same place twice for like two weeks.  You could also putt putt golf at a difference place every day.  It was pretty amusing!

 

After hearing all the cammed cars, she wants H/C/I – good time to uh, freshen up the motor!

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thats bizarre to me that the firewall mounted master cylinder flexes that much to make the brakes that bad.  never heard of such a thing.

 

but yes myrtle is always a good time.  you should come for mustang week, its way better i'm sure.

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4 hours ago, Prokiller said:

thats bizarre to me that the firewall mounted master cylinder flexes that much to make the brakes that bad.  never heard of such a thing.

 

but yes myrtle is always a good time.  you should come for mustang week, its way better i'm sure.

 

I've always wanted to go for Mustang Week.  We may be planning to go to both next year :)

 

If you look at the link to Hawks for the brace they have a video of the install, in the beginning they show how much it moves.  The boss said she saw this one moving around right before we installed.  I can assure you this is no placebo part.  I was blown away by the difference.

 

I can't wait to see if the SFCs tighten it up some.  If anything, I'll have a great place to jack up from.  That's one thing about this car, I don't like jacking it up because I feel like there is nowhere good haha

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Alright, as far as I can tell the windows are all adjusted!  I went ahead and added some Kilmat to the doors, changed the bulbs out (they have never worked) and put everything back together.  I think I made need to make a new vapor barrier.  The ones on there were so messed up I just tossed them.  But knowing my luck, that’s going to be one of those weirdly impossible things to replace ha!
 
Anyhow, some pics:
 
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I popped off the center piece and I’ve been putting the ends in the sun.  They seem to be flattening out some.  Tonight I might try to hit them with a little heat to try putting everything back together.  I really wish I could find a new set of these, I’d be much happier.
 
45402144552_629c156420_z.jpg
 
45402145632_1ec850b504_z.jpg
 
Thanks for looking!

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It’s sad the only build process on this site lately is a trans am!!!!  Lol

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Haha you're telling me.  We still have a good bit of stuff to do in the coming weeks on it.

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