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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
I started the re-wiring project on the car this week . . . man, it was a full-on rat's nest in there! I don't know why the guy who originally built this car didn't install a new wiring harness with a modern fuse box, but he didn't--he used the old original (or original style) fuse box with the old BUSS Glass fuses, and then attached another fuse strip, also with the glass fuses, to attach all the accessories in the car . . .

The first two pictures are of the rat's nest of wiring that I started with, the third picture is after I removed all that existing wiring that won't be used, the fourth picture is of the original fuse block and the last picture is of the wiring that was removed (among other things) . . .
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Discussion Starter · #63 ·
I bought an American Autowire generic classic car harness kit, specifically for the modern fuse box, with the intention of simply mounting the fuse box, and connecting the existing wiring harness to it . . .

This kit came with a light switch, a horn relay, a connector for the ididit steering column I'll be using and plenty of wiring that I can use to connect directly to the existing harness . . . it also has extra fuse box connections for things like power windows, power locks (which this car already has), cruise control (which I'll be adding later) and connections to gauges such as water temp, oil pressure, ammeter, tach, etc. (which I won't be using, since I've got the Dakota Digital gauge set, and a OBD-II connector that provides all those inputs) . . . the only gauge input I'll be using is the Fuel Gauge, so I'll be trimming those leads out of the harness and taping them off.

I'm also installing the new fuse block to the left of the steering column, instead of up in the corner above the kick panel, where the original fuse box was located, to provide better accessibility for changing fuses and flashers.

I got the fuse box mounted last night, using some existing holes in the firewall, and I used 3" long, 1/4" bolts and nuts to mount it . . . I think it looks great in that location, and now I just need to sort out how to connect the existing wiring to all the lights, turn signals, horn, etc., to the harness provided in the kit . . .
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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Another update I did this week, is roughly adjusted the hood . . . it's not fully adjusted, because I still have to sort out the latch configuration (the existing latch plate on the hood itself has been modified, and now there is a single hole where a latch pin is supposed to go) . . .

I spoke to someone who used to produce the remote latches for these cars, and he said he might have parts to sell me that would allow me to mount the latch on the body side, instead of on the hood, like the original, but while I'm waiting for that, I went ahead and purchased a new latch plate and latch that was listed on E-Bay, and that will be here probably some time next week.

Here are the pictures of the hood gaps--on the Left Front, the picture doesn't accurately show the gap, since I took that picture with the wrong perspective . . . it's an equal gap

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Discussion Starter · #65 ·
I got nearly all the wiring for the lights to the new fuse block finished--including the third brake light (I'm using an LED replacement for a 95-99 Tahoe); the only other stuff I will need to do in that regard is the reverse lights, which I will wire into the neutral safety switch in the shifter, after I figure out where to mount it.

The car already had LED taillights, and since I'm bringing the old girl into the 21st Century with all sorts of modern components, I decided to also install LED Headlights--got those installed last night

I am waiting on the bulbs for the park lights (by the way, this harness kit included a light switch that provided an alternate location for the park lights so they would also be on whenever the headlights are on, so I chose that option), the reverse lights and the bulbs for the dome/courtesy lights.

I thought I'd try to find an illuminated grille bar emblem, but was only able to find illuminated emblems for 55's . . . does anyone know if this is being produced anywhere? If not, I guess I'll just try to figure a way out to do it whenever the park lights are on . . .

I think the next major wiring job I'll work on will be for the Ignition switch . . . I'm converting it to use a "Push to Start" button, where you only have to have the key fob in your pocket in order to start it with the button--i.e.: no key needed to start the car!

The kit I bought for this can also lock/unlock the doors (which will replace the existing system), and provide remote start capabilities (though, not through a phone app--you have to be within the range of the antenna in the car).

After I get that part finished and wiring up the existing power windows system, I'll wire up the Dakota Digital gauges module, the Dakota Digital Cruise Control system, the GPS module for the speedo and the OBD-II module for the rest of the functions for the engine, and at that point, I'll start adding the Chevrolet Performance Connect & Cruise wiring into the fuse block.

Next after that will be the Vintage Air electronic Heater-A/C components then install the Heater-A/C box, the ididit chrome tilt column and the gauge cluster with the Dakota digital gauges--unfortunately, for some reason, they decided to move the hose connections to the right side vent instead of the original location, so since I want to retain the nice Chrome heater cover (and the right side vent), I'll need to figure out how to route everything to the legacy location and figure out how to get the box mounted to accomodate this. I will likely have to fabricate pipes and mounting brackets, which will slow down the progress a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
So, my build hit a bit of a wall, as I'm spending a lot of time on the wiring . . . got hung up on the door locks; for some reason, they aren't working at all, so I figured I'd buy a new kit, exactly like the one I have, and they aren't working either!

Regarding the windshield wipers--I decided to hook up the washer functionality, and was pleasantly surprised to see that the nozzle tube on the underside of the left wiper transmission was there, but someone had removed the one on the right side . . . I tried finding a replacement, and even went as far as to go to Hobby Lobby and tried several aluminum and brass tubes of different sizes, but the end result was that someone had drilled that hole out too far, and getting a tube to stay in there would be next to impossible . . . my options at that point were to either buy a new/refurbished right side transmission assembly that had the nozzle for $80 or more, and go through the trouble of installing it, or to switch to a different method of delivering the spray . . . I chose the latter.

I found that 50's Fords used a hood-mounted nozzle, and those look like they would work nicely on the car . . . so, I bought a set on E-Bay, and those should be here today . . . I also bought these off of Amazon, so I've got a selection of several to choose from:


and


I will be drilling a hole on each side, inside the Rocket humps, but will have to experiment a bit to find the best location . . . then, I'll run the hoses along the underside of the hood to each nozzle . . .

I had originally purchased an aluminum tank to use as the reservoir, but it came with a small hole in the bottom of the tank with a grommet in it, and there is no way it will be able to seal with just a hose in it, so I am sending that back, and purchased a new Ford Fusion plastic tank with a flexible fill tube that I'll be using instead. I plan on mounting the tank low in front of the left front wheel, and cut a hole in the wheel well to mount the fill tube, so it will all be hidden. This tank comes with an integrated pump, so all I'll have to do is wire it up after everything is mounted--unlike with the aluminum tank, where I would have had to find a place to mount the external pump and route hoses to the tank and the nozzles from it.

Other stuff I got done:

  • I am using a Dakota Digital GPS module for my speedo, and it has an optional external antenna; I bought that and got it routed
  • I am converting to a "Push-To-Start" keyless entry and start system, which has 3 antennas--two for the keyless fob to unlock the car, and one for proximity for starting the vehicle--got those all placed . . . the one for the rear, I ran up the left windshield pillar and across the top of the headliner trim all the way to the back, and used the tailgate trim to hide it, exiting just under the third brake light
  • The reinforcement for the hood latch on the underside of the hood for this car had been modified with a steel plate where the latch went, and then painted over; I was lucky enough to find one on E-Bay that looked brand new with a brand new latch (which I needed to buy anyway), and it's at the body shop getting painted now . . . I still need to purchase the latch support behind the grille and the striker plate.
  • I had hung the fuel tank under the car, but due to the small area for the fuel pump and sending unit, trying to complete the wiring to those would have been pretty difficult to do right, so I pulled the tank back down, and have some Weatherpack 2-wire connectors coming for both those items, which should be here today; I'll be using the Solder Seal connectors to connect those to the wiring for both of those, to make sure everything has a good connection.

My "To Do" list keeps growing longer and longer, as I get further into the project . . . things like deciding on where to mount the Dakota Digital modules (which now includes a Cruise Control module), and whether to build some sort of tray to mount them all on . . . what to do with the speaker opening in the dash (thinking about putting a double DIN stereo or a tablet in there, but not sure I want to put it there or in the console that hasn't yet arrived), etc. . . .

What I had originally thought would be finished by the end of April, is taking much longer than I expected, and now I am hoping I can have it done in the next month or two . . . it's been slow going lately . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #67 ·
This car had a Vintage Air system installed in it, and I decided to remove the HVAC box from under the dash, so that I could test out the Heater Core and the Evaporator Coil to make sure there were no leaks, before buttoning it all backup . . . however, once I got it removed, I could tell that there would be no way to remove the items from the box, since it was glued together using plastic glue, that essentially "welds" it together, so I grudgingly purchased the latest version of the HVAC box from Vintage Air . . .

I like the idea of having everything electronic for the heater/AC controls, but I really didn't like the way they implemented the lines to it--you have to give up the right side vent, and run everything through there . . .

I searched online and found that there was an older version of the "GEN IV" Vintage Air system, and it had the lines coming through the location of the original heater box, so I called them up and they located the lines that were used with that system . . . I was able to purchase those lines, and they told me it would be "7-10 Days" . . . this was on 4-20-22, and I just received them today . . .

I was anxious to see how they lined up, so I attached them to the existing heater core and evap coil lines . . . this is not exactly how I expected them to line up . . .

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Needless to say, I forwarded this picture to them, and it looks like there will be some "tube modifications" in my future . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
The location for the hood latch on this car had a plate welded over the opening, a hole drilled and tapped into it, and it was then painted the same color as the rest of the car . . . apparently, they had intended to use a remote latch, but changed their minds and went with a "tilt forward" hood instead; this meant I needed to not only get the hood latch, but also the front hood reinforcement where the latch bolts in . . .

I was fortunate enough to find one on E-Bay that looked brand new, and also included a brand new latch; once I got it, I tried stripping the paint, and found out it wasn't paint, it was powder coated . . . I came to this conclusion when it took me three hours of applying the chemical stripper multiple times and scraping it off with a putty knife (usually, a plastic bondo spreader is sufficient).

Once I got it stripped, I took it to a friend's body shop to have it painted; I picked it up yesterday morning and installed it last night . . .

The first picture is the original front hood reinforcement, the second is the one I purchased from E-Bay and the third picture is the new piece painted and installed.

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Discussion Starter · #70 ·
I got the EVAP canister mounted in the area behind the left rear wheel well yesterday, and today I pulled the tank back out of the car, so I could work on the electrical and vapor connections . . .

It occurred to me that it would be a good idea to make it smple to pull the tank out, and that meant using connectors that can be disconnected . . . I had originally planned to just connect the wiring directly to the sending unit and fuel pump wires . . . glad I thought of adding connectors in between instead!

I am using Weatherpack connectors . . . I ordered some off of Amazon, but when I got them, I could tell the wiring for them was FAR too small a gauge to run the Fuel pump, so I had to order a set that had 12 AWG wiring . . . those should be here this week, hopefully tomorrow.

The fuel pump has a 5/16" vent on the top of the assembly, and the fuel tank has a 1/2" vent . . . the Tanks, Inc. installation kit included a "T" to connect those together, and a fitting with pipe threads for the vent. I used the "T" and am waiting on the hose clamps I ordered to arrive, before I finish that part . . . once that's done, I'll run a 1/2" line from there to the EVAP canister, and after the Weather Pack connectors for the fuel pump arrive, I'll add that on . . . I'm using Solder Seal Butt connectors, so everything will have a good connection.

After I get all the wiring connections finished, I'll put the tank back in the car and work on the fuel connection; I'll be using a -6 AN hose to the existing steel line, and in the line, I will have a fuel filter and the Fuel Pressure Sensor . . . the connection to the engine is already completed up front.

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Discussion Starter · #71 ·
So, a few weeks ago, I got the vendor to take back the Core Support/Radiator/Condenser module and fix what was wrong with it . . . yesterday morning, they sent a picture of the corrected/revised module, and said they would be shipping it out later in the day . . .

Here is the picture they sent; the fans are DeRale 12" 2-speed fans with 1100CFM on low and 1450CFM on high (each, respectively):

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Discussion Starter · #72 ·
Received the Eddie Motorsports Hood Latch Support yesterday afternoon and installed it after work . . .

The hood closes completely, but there is some play in the Left Side . . . not sure what I need to do to eliminate that . . . recommendations on how to adjust are welcome . . .
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Discussion Starter · #73 ·
So, I received the Power Cool Systems "Cooling Module", and the picture I posted previously was just before they shipped it out . . . when I received it, both of the tie bar ears were (again) bent . . . not sure how that happened, because the box did not seem to have any damage . . .

I disassembled the module, installed the core support, and then test-fitted the radiator . . .

I still have some clearance issue . . . if you look at the picture from the previous post, they welded on a plate to mount the fans, and that pushes the fans about 3/8" closer to the engine, so I'm going to revert to my original plan of mounting the fans directly to the radiator core, which will give me back the 3/8", and I'm going to space them apart more, which will provide more clearance in the middle, which is where the biggest interference is, with the water pump shaft . . .

I might also slot the holes in the tie bar ears, and tilt the top forward . . . I think I can gain another 1/4" or so by doing that, and if need be, the fan shrouds seem to have plenty of meat where I can maybe cut away a bit and gain even more clearance . . .

The first two pics are the ears as I received them (I subsequently straightened them with a rubber mallet against the floor), the third picture shows the radiator sitting out of the core support by about a half inch, and though it's hard to see, the fan shrouds are touching the water pump shaft.
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Discussion Starter · #74 ·
I cut the mounting brackets off the radiator, and mounted the fans directly to the radiator core, using the standard nylon attaching hardware . . . this allowd the radiator to sit completely in the core support and I still had a little clearance between the fan and the A/C compressor and belt tensioner . . .

Also, It almost clears the water pump pulley . . . I will need to grind away just a little bit of the fan shroud on the driver's side fan, but otherwise, it's starting to look good.

By the way, these are DeRale PN 18212 12" fans . . . they are 2-speed fans rated at 1000CFM on low and 1450CFM on high, each.

The first picture was taken after the brackets were cut off, and shows the locations of where I ultimately attached the fans . . . for a comparison, scroll up to my earlier post showing the complete module taken by the vendor just before shipping it out.

The second picture shows the clearance at the A/C compressor and belt tensioner, and the third picture is the water pump to fan interference . . . it's just barely touching . . .

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Discussion Starter · #76 ·
That's a little close. Can you move your radiator out 1/2" with spacers?
Mike
Not really . . . it's attached to the core support using 3 5/16" bolts on each side, screwing into nutserts, and the weight is supported and the bottom, where the radiator sits on a ledge . . . moving it out a half inch would cause all the weight to have to be supported by those nutserts, and would require longer bolts, which would put even more stress on them . . .

About the only thing I can do is to drill another set of holes in the tie bar ends, and tilt it forward, and I am considering doing that
 

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Discussion Starter · #77 ·
So, I broke out the dremel, and ground some of the fan shroud on the left (driver's side) fan, which provided the clearance I needed around the water pump, but when I installed the radiator back into the core, I realized that I didn't have it all the way in previously . . . the water pump pulley intrudes further than I had thought originally . . . here's the before and after
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Discussion Starter · #78 ·
And, this morning, after I spent the evening patting myself on the back for getting the clearance I needed on the fan/water pump pulley, I thought I'd better check to see what the throttle body hose clearance would be . . . and yep, you guessed it--there's a huge area of the fan that interferes . . . mulling over my options now . . .

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Discussion Starter · #79 ·
I pulled the radiator out and installed the induction tube in the path I originally planned on using for it . . .

Someone had mentioned spacing the radiator out a bit in an earlier response . . . well, that looks like the only solution to the issues I'm having, so I devised a plan to use 1/5" square aluminum tubing, like what the core support is constructed from, and use that to space the radiator out by that amount . . .

I will drill holes in the sides of the tubing so I can install bolts into the existing hole in the core support, and install some Nutserts on the other side where I can just bolt the radiator to those . . . I will also have a piece of tubing running across the top, to make it look like it was meant to be this way, and probably a piece on the bottom, to help support the radiator

This is what the induction tubing should look like:
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