Last updated Mar 1, 2010
This was my first car at 16 years old. It was 1981. I drove this car until 1985 when the motor locked up. I had a "friend" put in another one that was not what it should have been. On the way home with the car, smoke began to roll out of the sidepipes that I had on the car at the time. It was taken back to the garage and was not properly fixed. I ended up going to samll claims court over the issue and was awarded the car back.
The guy that now had the car was the father of the man that originally put the motor in. He had taken over the business because of financial troubles for his son. The new owner counter sued me back and we ended up in districit court. The judge wanted us to come to an agreement on our own. I could not come to an agreement with this man and his lawyer and we left the courthouse. Not long after this, the man was busted for dealing in stolen property from what I was told and the cars that he had on his lot were ordered to be removed. My car was still on this lot, junkyard, and it was also removed. This was in 1988. I lost track of the car.
Life went own and my car interest faded until 2006. Going to local car shows my love for cars was renewed and I wanted to find another Trans Am. I was not able to find what I wanted and ended up buying a 1981 Z28 Camaro. This car was nicely restored inside and out. The only thing is, I wanted a Trans Am. I know some people think these cars are practically the same car but I beg to differ. If you don't think there is a difference, just ask a Camaro owner, I am sure they think theirs is better, just as I think the Trans Am is better. But I digress.
On February 11th, 2007, not more than 3 miles from my house, I was on my way home from working and I spotted a 1979 Trans Am sitting at a house of a man that deals with these type cars. It was sitting with the rear to the road and that is what caught my eye. This car had a spot on the bumper cover that looked awfully familiar. I was on the phone with my wife at the time and I mentioned it to her that I thought this man had my old car. She thought I had to be losing it because after all it had been over 20 years since I last saw this car. Could it possibly be it. I went back to investigate.
When I got out to look at the car, it was in horrible condition, but I knew it was mine before I got to it. I opened the passenger side door and what I found inside was all the proof that I was correct. In the right front floorboard, the only one not rusted out, was a Prevention magazine from 1985 with my daddy's name and address on the label. An obituary of a friend that had passed away from injuries in a car wreck in 1982. A reciept from the magistrate for the first speeding ticket that I had gotten in 1984. Three pay stubs from my employer from 1985. I can remember leaving all these things in the car. This was an exciting moment for me to say the least.
When I talked to the man that had the car, he had ran the VIN number and it came back registered to, you guessed it, ME. How could it be that this car was still registered to me? It had never been fixed and driven another mile since I last saw the car. It was a little worse for wear and had extensive body damage and rusted inside and out. Only a fool would have an interest in fixing this car and here I am. Only because it was my car and the history I had with it was the reason I decided to take it on.
February 12th, 2007 the car was pushed into my garage. I have all kinds of picture documentation to show the process of the car being brought back to life. You can see a video on youtube by doing a search for gbennett002. It shows what the car looked like in 1984 with the first picture. If you pause the video at the start and look at the rear bumper cover you will see the spot that caught my eye when I found the car again. I hope anyone that reads this will take the time to watch this restoration. If you are truely a car guy, you will enjoy it.
I have added more pictures to my albums and you can see on this sight the different phases of the life of my car. Enjoy.
403 Olds bored 20 over. TH350 beefed up to handle more power than this engine is producing.
403 Olds - Automatic - A/C - AM/FM 8 Track - Power Windows and Locks - T-Tops - Trunk Release - Deluxe Interior - Starlight Black.
Replaced all bushings and mounts. 1 inch Eibach lowering springs to get frontend down after changing bushings. This made a world of difference in the handling and ride. Changed drum brake rearend for disc brake rear out of a WS-6 car. Gears had already been change to 3.73. I will be changing these soon to something like a 3.08 The paint is Dupont Base Clear Coat that looks like it is wet. The wheels come from YearOne. 15x8 Snowflakes. The engine is topped with an Edelbrock Performer intake, 600 Holley Carb. Flowtech Ceraminc Coated Headers 2.5 inch X-pipe into Flowtech Afterburner Mufflers ran out through Pypes duel tips.
Permanent Link to this Car