2000 News

     
  1-10-00 -Well, some major changes are now underway. Since my transmission is still not installed, I have bit the bullet and decided to put in my new motor. It will not be a stroker, but that will not make much of a difference. The time frame here will hopefully be another three weeks. I picked up a complete 350 block with the crank, pistons, and rods, and they will all be machined and conditioned within the next week. I still have some parts to pick up, but that will all be done within the next week as well. The B&M Megashifter has been installed, though, and it certainly looks as bad as it shifts (even if the car is not running).  
     
  1-15-00 -I've ordered and received my new cam, lifters, and pushrods for the new engine. All are from Comp Cams. The new transmission will be installed for now so that my car won't just sit and collect dust. I hope it will be done within the week. I'm getting agitated not being with my SS. Anyway, look for a new link to the G-Body Web Ring here soon. I still have not set up my scanner yet, so the new engine page is still on hold. And that sucks.  
     
  1-18-00 -Just a quick mention that I have placed this web page on the G-Body Webring.  
     
  2-22-00 -There has not been much to say lately. I've been without my Monte Carlo SS since the beginning of December. Long story, but I should have it by the end of the week. I've sold the Holley Dominator 1050 CFM carburetor since learning it would be too much for my new engine. I will be getting a double-pumper 650 CFM in the near future. I've redone the links section to accomodate some from the G-Body Webring now.  
     
  3-17-00 -Well, some progress is being made on my SS. It turns out that the shift kit installed in my new transmission was recalled a year and a half ago. The kit called for a modification that made the transmission reverse clutch permanently. This caused it to be in two gears at one time.  
     
  The company that made the shift kit was very apologetic to the person that built the transmission for me. They are air-freighting a new shift kit, and they will replace the ruined valve body, both at their cost. My SS should be ready by Monday or Tuesday. I can't wait to slam gears.  
     
  4-15-00 -I've been somewhat depressed and upset since my SS has been in the shop for over 4 months. But, there is light at the end of the tunnel. The transmission is installed and working properly. The guy working on my transmission shattered the output carrier. To fix this, he ordered a flame-treated one out of Vermont. He also changed the 1-2 shift spring to be somewhat easier. And, as a free upgrade, he gave me a 2600 stall converter; I was going to have only a 2200.  
     
  I will be picking up my car on Monday. There are a couple of exhaust system issues that have to be taken care of. The transmission is not a true manual valve-body, although it will shift better if I do it manually. Now I can finish my engine progress. I will have my tax return money soon to get the ball rolling again. All I need now is the carburetor, ignition box, and patience.  
     
  4-21-00 -I'VE GOT MY SS BACK!!!! All I and my friends have to say is that it's about time. I've been spending all week cleaning and buffing my SS. One surprising thing is that my engine is running as well as before it went in for repair back in December. My SS has been off the road for so long, I had to immediately get it re-registered and reinspected. I also had to get two new tires on the front.  
     
  The B&M Megashifter shifts so smoothly. I can tell you that with my new transmission, I'm not going to have tires on the rear more than six months at a time. It's barking them each gear. Also, I have finally finished the beginnings of my engine page. The link for it is further down the page.  
     
  5-16-00 -We've begun the long process of building my new engine. I am hoping to have the money to get all the block work done within the next two weeks. For a single price, the block will be reconditioned and bored .30 over. The piston rods and crank will get reconditioned. New pistons will be installed. And new crank bearings will be installed.  
     
  5-26-00 -The block is ready to be hauled to the shop for rebuilding. In the mean time, I still need to acquire the carburetor and ignition system. If everything falls into place, my new engine should be finished and in my SS by the end of July.  
     
  6-13-2000 -After a long wait, the block work is being done. But I've been told we cannot use the rods we have. So I'm taking out a loan to finish paying for any engine parts. I'm also going to take care of the body work and get a paint job as well.  
     
  I'm planning on putting up more photographs on my engine page before assembly is executed. Unfortunately, I did not get photos of the new transmission before it was put in. And I really don't want to miss the opportunity to take more of the rest of the work.  
     
  7-7-2000 -The engine is not complete as of yet. I'm not sure if I will get photos of the rest of the parts before then. The ballpark deadline for the engine being put in is the end of July.  
     
  The shifter cable frayed. I re-routed a new one to the side of the transmission instead of over the top. I have also replaced the spark plug wires again.  
     
  I have replaced my bearings again in an attempt to isolate my front wheels squeaking. The squeaking only occurs after the car has been in motion for a few minutes (which makes me think it's heat-related) and at speeds from a stop to about 60 MPH. I'm suspecting it's the brakes.  
     
  7-22-2000 -Over half of my new engine is complete. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera to take pictures of the rest of the parts. So, I will simply take photos when it is complete and post them on the site when they are developed.  
     
  The squeak is now gone. I have replaced my front calipers and brake lines, along with a fresh set of performance friction brakes. It was really needed, as the squeak was getting really bad.  
     
  The air filter has been removed. The heat riser hose melted the flex-hose that connects the air inlet and the air filter housing. So I converted the air filter to a performance one and put in an aftermarket oil breather. I can definitely see a performance improvement. Not to mention the secondaries make a lot more noise when I floor it.  
     
  9-24-2000 -Well, my engine project is underway again. We've had to move the engine to another location to continue working on it. It's about 70% complete. With patience and a great effort, I'm hoping to have it in by the end of the year. The original engine is still running well, despite a worsening oil leak. I'm currently working on adding a few more sites to my links section as well.  
     
  Several parts have been replaced or upgraded. The rims have been given a new coat of silver paint, along with a clearcoat overtop. The pull handle on the driver's door has been remounted. It's been off since I purchased my SS over two years ago. The water pump bearings were going bad, so I had to put another one on. It's only been a year since I replaced it last. The fan clutch decided to bite the dust as well, and I replaced this part last year as well. In it's place is a new Flex-Lite flex fan. My SS now sounds like a turbine engine. In addition, I have since removed the other performance air filter and housing. It was only 9" in size. Now I have a brand new 14" K&N air filter and a new chrome air filter housing to hold it in.  
     
  10-4-2000 -I did some modifications to my stock Quadrajet that makes my SS Monte Carlo perform much better. But these modifications don't come without the cost of fuel consumption. For more information, click on the "Advice on Future Modifications to SS Monte Carlos" link below.  
     
  I had to change out my signal lever and the switch it plugs into. I had the lever put in by a shop when they told me that the switch had gone bad as well. When I returned with the switch, they informed me they could not put it in that day. So I went to Autozone, and, for $25, I bought both tools necessary to take a steering wheel apart. It's not as complicated as you think.  
     
  Please! If you have to buy these parts, check first with your local auto parts store. And show them exactly what you need. I bought both of my parts OEM, and they ran $122 for the lever and $118 for the signal / windshield wiper switch. Autozone just started carrying the lever for $40.  
     
  10-22-2000 -Well, in the past week, I have finally achieved my goal. The engine is now complete. Last Monday, I bolted on the other head. Yesterday, I tightened the rocker arms, mounted a double-roller timing chain (the direct-gear idea is out of the picture), set the timing, bolted on the intake, and put on the valve covers. All that remains is to bolt down the carburetor and mount the headers. I will be attempting to drop in the engine next week. I can't begin to express the happiness I am feeling now that this is finally coming to pass.  
     
  I am still concerned whether all of the old gauges will work with the new engine. I do not believe any of them are computer-controlled, even if they are electric. The speedometer is mechanical as it reads off the transmission. The oil pressure sensor is mechanical and simply converts the readings to an electric signal. The voltmeter is definitely electrical. The fuel gauge should be OK.  
     
  The two I'm really concerned about are the tachometer and water temperature. The tach, as I'm told, can be connected the the negative lead of the coil I'm putting in (an Accel Supercoil). The water temperature sensor has two electrical leads on it, so I'm curious about whether it's tied into the computer or not.  
     
  This is only the beginning. I have plans to put in a new gauge set. I'm going to put in annodized silver / aluminum gauges from Autometer, the same ones you see in Nascar racing. In addition, I am considering a roll-cage and a new rear end. And a new paint job plus body work is still in the mix as well.  
     
  11-22-2000 -My Monte Carlo SS lives again!!!! We fired it up for the first time last night. I did not expect it to take so long to get running. But I also did not realize that I was changing so much at one time. All the wiring had to be redone, including the ignition system.  
     
  Some changes have been made along the way. I am unable to use my power steering pump. Since my heads do not have accessory holes, we had nowhere to mount it. In addition, I had to buy an aftermarket bracket for the alternator, including a different belt.  
     
  I was ready to take the SS for a quick spin last night, but something happened to my coil. So I will have to go out and buy another one today. Just a minor setback. Also, I may have to rebuild the carburetor since it sat so long without any use. It's having a hard time keeping a steady idle.  
     
  Now I have to get the exhaust system done. That's going to be a bit hard since my car is pressed for being street legal. I should have that, plus the other small fixes, completed by Saturday night for the local car meet hangout. In addition, I will have to change out the power steering for manual. I already have the manual pump.  
     
  All the stock gauges work. My guess is no one makes an effort to keep using the stock ones. I have rethought changing them out, and I am now considering just replacing the speedometer and tachometer. I will keep the other gauges. It makes everything simpler since they all fit in one area in the dash.  
     
  12-8-2000 -Well, there's about 1,000 miles on the new engine. A lot has changed since putting it in. The engine link will now display a complete listing of the parts. We've been doing so much to the car, I have not been able to keep track. Working on it has almost become a daily task. In short, I have also purchased new rims, the exhaust system, and a couple of street racing tires for the rear.  
     
  The Unilite distributor simply died, so we replaced the entire ignition system with a rebuild HEI vacuum-advance and an Accel HEI Super Coil. In addition, I had to buy new spark-plug wires again. So I splurged and bought the Accel 8.8mm spiral-core wires.  
     
  More repairs are ahead. I have a really bad oil leak somewhere on the front of the engine. This will be fixed by the end of the weekend. The left exhaust pipe bangs against the transmission crossmember (we hammered out a notch to get the pipe to fit). I will have to see about purchasing a vacuum canister to help with my power brakes.  
     
  As much as I have promoted using synthetic oil, I am currently using 10W40 regular grade. It will be awhile before I put in synthetic, especially since I am leaking oil. This is partially due to the break-in period.  
     
  12-26-2000 -The new engine has been running smooth for the most part, with over 2,000 miles on it. The power steering pump has been changed to manual steering. Surprisingly, it's pretty smooth to steer. A vacuum ventilation was also installed to help relieve crankcase pressure. Today I had the front end aligned and all the tires balanced.  
     
  Right now, I'm pacing myself about what I want to do to my SS in the future. The most prominent choices are to purchase a cowl induction hood and to get it painted. I'm currently using my old 10" chrome air filter housing because a 14" will not fit underneath my hood. As for the paint job, it will most likely be two-tone metallic black / metallic grey. I'm also planning on putting on a couple "350" emblems on the sides in addition to new SS stickers.  


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