• Welcome to For E Bodies Only !

    We are a community of Plymouth Cuda and Dodge Challenger owners. Join now! Its Free!

My T/A restoration...

MN74

Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2017
Messages
18
Reaction score
16
Location
Texas
Thanks for posting up all these great details (and for the ones to come yet)! What are using for your replacement grease boots on the steering components? Seems like the correct factory replacement ones are hard to find.
Frank Badalson sells the correct boots with part numbers and logo on them....
 

MN74

Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2017
Messages
18
Reaction score
16
Location
Texas
I'll continue with the front suspension. I reused and restored as many original parts as possible but certain things needed replacement like ball joints, tie rod ends and idler arm. I used American-made parts where possible. I tried to reproduce the appropriate finishes, whether drop-forged, natural, heat-treated, etc...
View attachment 45588 View attachment 45592
View attachment 45589
All of the original steering components were still with the car and the original break-off grease fittings were still present. I will install them after the new parts have been serviced with grease. More cool original parts saved for authenticity.
View attachment 45590 View attachment 45591
Original tie rod sleeves restored along with their original hardware!
View attachment 45593 View attachment 45594
Original manual steering gear rebuilt by Firm Feel. Original phosphate plated hardware reused.
Grady

Looking great my friend....Original suspension components are a tough find....Most of anything that is available are superseded numbers. Unless they are in an original box most cannot figure the casting numbers and end up pitching them....

Justin
 

IA6Barrel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
62
Reaction score
29
What a great story and great car. I really enjoyed reading your thread. Nice work on trying to keep it factory correct. Thank you for sharing.
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Frank Badalson sells the correct boots with part numbers and logo on them....

Thanks Justin - I did not know that! Fortunately, none of the suspension/steering components have been final-bolted down so everything can still come apart easily. I will look into those for sure...
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Original hardware for me is a must! I literally crawled around on the floor after I pulled the car out of the seller's barn looking for original nuts/bolts/etc... that had fallen out of the rotted cardboard boxes they were put in back in 1986. I purchased the David Wise/Byron Fettig guide to E-body fasteners to aid in identifying all that I had and also to help determine what I didn't. Byron has supplied me with lots of original hardware and other unusual small pieces that I probably would not have found elsewhere.
20171126_130546.jpg


After finally getting the car to the place I have now and taking inventory, it became apparent that several parts were missing and/or incorrect. The ignition system was changed - the dual point distributor was swapped out for a single point (fortunately the original dual-point was in a box), the starter had been replaced at some point with a Chrysler starter but from 1976, and the alternator and voltage regulator were replaced with newer parts. A square-back style alternator was with the car and the original was no where to be found. This would spark a 3+ year search for the extremely rare 3438172 alternator with the very short date code window for the T/A production. Through a phone conversation with David Wise, I was connected with Rich Berlisk who agreed to sell me an original, never-installed, properly date-coded brand new alternator from 1970 that he had. I still consider it to be my greatest find to date as I thought they were essentially extinct. Thank you Rich!
20170501_182131.jpg
20170501_182020.jpg

20170501_181941.jpg
20170501_182054.jpg
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Ok, back to front suspension - front spindles, backing plates, calipers, etc... All original components restored here.
20141208_202240.jpg
20150415_221301.jpg
20150421_184141.jpg
20150426_092721.jpg
20150426_092701.jpg
Original Kelsey-Hayes calipers. I did NOT rebuild these as they were in great working order. I just flushed as much of the old fluid out as possible, bead blasted the cases and matte-cleared them. Hope this doesn't bite me later...
20160221_161232.jpg
2 of the original 1970-only slide pins were missing. Could not find any at Carlisle or on-line. Byron Fettig didn't have any but connected me with someone who did. Lucky again as these are not reproduced to my knowledge.
20150726_122502.jpg
20150726_124804.jpg
20150726_144013.jpg
20150726_144415.jpg

Working on restoring the original 2-piece front brake rotor and hub assembly...
 
Last edited:

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
20150726_164449.jpg
20150726_165501.jpg

20160320_170217.jpg
A semi-final assembly photo. I have not applied any inspection/assembly paint daubs yet and I have to go back and cut some of the threads off of the UCA bumper studs to match the originals. A dead giveaway that they are reproduction parts is the longer length of the threaded area. Can't see in the photo but the correct brown dichromate front strut rod washers are in place courtesy of Bill Rolik.
 

fk5aar

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2015
Messages
372
Reaction score
86
was the quick ratio steering available for manual and power steering? Awesome work!
 

MN74

Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2017
Messages
18
Reaction score
16
Location
Texas
Original hardware for me is a must! I literally crawled around on the floor after I pulled the car out of the seller's barn looking for original nuts/bolts/etc... that had fallen out of the rotted cardboard boxes they were put in back in 1986. I purchased the David Wise/Byron Fettig guide to E-body fasteners to aid in identifying all that I had and also to help determine what I didn't. Byron has supplied me with lots of original hardware and other unusual small pieces that I probably would not have found elsewhere. View attachment 45710

After finally getting the car to the place I have now and taking inventory, it became apparent that several parts were missing and/or incorrect. The ignition system was changed - the dual point distributor was swapped out for a single point (fortunately the original dual-point was in a box), the starter had been replaced at some point with a Chrysler starter but from 1976, and the alternator and voltage regulator were replaced with newer parts. A square-back style alternator was with the car and the original was no where to be found. This would spark a 3+ year search for the extremely rare 3438172 alternator with the very short date code window for the T/A production. Through a phone conversation with David Wise, I was connected with Rich Berlisk who agreed to sell me an original, never-installed, properly date-coded brand new alternator from 1970 that he had. I still consider it to be my greatest find to date as I thought they were essentially extinct. Thank you Rich!
View attachment 45711 View attachment 45712
View attachment 45713 View attachment 45714
A lot of people don't realize nor have any idea how rare that alternator is....Serviceable parts were either pitched or turned in for the core charge and are long gone...The parts hoarders and graveyards took starters and alternators when they strip the cars they either piled them on the ground or threw them in a 55 gallon drum outside. Letting the elements destroy them and throwing them dented, banged, chips etc...

The two hardest items to find for an OE restoration are an alternator and a starter. After 5 years I finally found the correct starter that was pieced together and the alternator I got lucky on and that took 2 years.....

So to the people reading if you do not know when you see these cars like Grady's that has these correct parts really shows how detailed and special these cars are.....The dedication and $$ can be mind boggling to restore a car back to a day one status and to preserve history in the process...

Commendable indeed!

Love to see the correct diodes and part number pulley...Sweet!
 

MN74

Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2017
Messages
18
Reaction score
16
Location
Texas
View attachment 45726 View attachment 45727
View attachment 45728 A semi-final assembly photo. I have not applied any inspection/assembly paint daubs yet and I have to go back and cut some of the threads off of the UCA bumper studs to match the originals. A dead giveaway that they are reproduction parts is the longer length of the threaded area. Can't see in the photo but the correct brown dichromate front strut rod washers are in place courtesy of Bill Rolik.
Grady...Bill sells the correct bumpers with part number....

The cast finish looks perfect on the rotors and check out those original studs:D

I notice you are reusing the original brake hoses! The ends were originally a cad finish....I can hook you up with an at home process the create the original finish with a single spray can....SO clean the metal ends and lightly mist coats until desired look is reached. Test on something else prior to do this. It mimics the old CAD cyanide finish....

IMG_1531.JPG
IMG_1532.JPG
 

340challconvert

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
4,400
Reaction score
2,101
Location
Parsippany, NJ
View attachment 45726 View attachment 45727
View attachment 45728 A semi-final assembly photo. I have not applied any inspection/assembly paint daubs yet and I have to go back and cut some of the threads off of the UCA bumper studs to match the originals. A dead giveaway that they are reproduction parts is the longer length of the threaded area. Can't see in the photo but the correct brown dichromate front strut rod washers are in place courtesy of Bill Rolik.

I noticed the factory markings on your center link. Is that original or did you add them?
I cleaned up mine and left the original blue factory assembly marks.
Dino2 (1).gif


steering center link.JPG


steering center link w markings.JPG
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
The two hardest items to find for an OE restoration are an alternator and a starter.

I am still looking for the correct starter for my T/A. I just found the correct starter for my A12 Super Bee last week after almost 4 years of searching and I found the correct alternator for my A12 at Carlisle for $7.00!! It was in a pile of crap some guy had who wanted $7/each for alternators so I bought 2 because 1 had a beautiful pulley with a very cleanly stamped part number. Sometimes you get lucky...

I notice you are reusing the original brake hoses!

Justin - while those are the original brake hoses in the photos, I am not using them. They were just used to plug the fluid ports during bead blasting. I did save the original rubber I.D. bands that were on the brake hoses. Can't believe they were still there. As for the CAD paint system, I have an older 4-stage set from Eastwood's that I've used but it is tedious. I'll look into that Duplicolor paint if I have future need - thanks for the info my friend...

Grady...Bill sells the correct bumpers with part number....

I have a hard time with Bill. I know he has a ton of high-quality stuff and I've spent a ton with him over the years but his service has slowed to a painful crawl and he seems to be out of many of the items he has listed on his website. May have to give him another try as I have always liked his parts. There is a set of NOS bumpers on eBay I'm considering right now but they're $100.00. Once you start down the road of a "day-one" restoration, you have to fully commit and be prepared to be patient and spend money. I love the challenge though - absolutely LOVE it! I would do this every day for people if I could...
 
Last edited:

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
I noticed the factory markings on your center link.

I'm not sure what photo you are referring to as the center link as well as the tie rods, pitman and idler arms all appeared to have been painted black when I got the car. After pressure washing all the parts and looking them over, I did not find any markings on my center link. Please point it out to me if I am completely blind and missing something in one of my own photos! I love that you preserved yours!
 

340challconvert

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
4,400
Reaction score
2,101
Location
Parsippany, NJ
View attachment 45726 View attachment 45727
View attachment 45728 A semi-final assembly photo. I have not applied any inspection/assembly paint daubs yet and I have to go back and cut some of the threads off of the UCA bumper studs to match the originals. A dead giveaway that they are reproduction parts is the longer length of the threaded area. Can't see in the photo but the correct brown dichromate front strut rod washers are in place courtesy of Bill Rolik.

Look at the center link in the last pic in this post. It looks like there is an orange inspection mark left of center near the bottom similar to the markings on mine. They look faded but noticible?
 
Last edited:

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
That's the right side strut rod. I see what you are referring to and it was some dirt or grime that got on there just in time for the photo! Good eye! lol
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Rear suspension - very easy to remove from the car. Note the crazy tall aftermarket pinion snubber which did its share of damage to the floor.
20140704_134703.jpg
20140704_135019.jpg

Leaf springs, along with pretty much everything else underneath, was painted black for some reason. It looked like it was done with a paint brush. After some cleaning, I found the springs to be original. There were extra bands around them and they were in different locations than factory orientation. My guess is they were added for drag racing. Got the leafs separated, cleaned and bead blasted and then matte cleared. In hindsight, I should have had these (along with many other parts) hot tank cleaned rather than blasted. I completely rebuilt the springs with new spacers, bands and bushings...
20150111_164510.jpg
20150201_140338.jpg
20150228_162331.jpg
20150302_194921.jpg
20150302_194926.jpg
20150302_202248.jpg

Ready to be installed...
20150302_204958.jpg
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Forward spring mounts - these were original and a little rough after blasting. I debated about replacing them with reproduction parts and even ordered a set which arrived and didn't really look or fit properly. I went with the original regardless of their condition.
20150307_115138.jpg
20150307_143128.jpg

Original bolts and marsden nuts restored, rough but original...
20150307_150352.jpg
20150307_150408.jpg

Proper inspection paint daubs applied...
20150307_213336.jpg
20150307_213406.jpg
 

Grady Cain

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
881
Reaction score
446
Location
NW Connecticut
Rear axle and differential - I had the axle housing powder coated along with the k-member. It was a difficult decision to make as I mentioned in post #12 because I have been trying to keep the car as pure original as possible. Again, in hindsight I would probably have painted them instead. Careful cleaning was the key with all of these parts as many inspection marks and paint daubs were found.
3 Dots.jpg
3L18 (1).jpg
3L18 (2).jpg
3L18 (3).jpg
35 (1).jpg
20141019_162318.jpg
20150125_151345.jpg
20141019_162253.jpg

Note the green paint on the nut for the driveshaft yoke... Note the sideways "E" on the back of the housing...
The original 3.91 rear with date code but found 2 bolts missing on disassembly. They were not inside the housing! Hmmm.......
20150301_100629.jpg
20150222_112755.jpg
 
Top