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Thread: 75 Trans Am pics

  1. #1
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    75 Trans Am pics

    OK -- my first foray into posting pics here...so we'll see how this works...

    Here is a picture of the car in the winter of 75-76, at the height of the CB craze...



    And here is a pic of the car as it appears today...



    The current rims are a set of gen 3 cast wheels from my 84 TA, which met an untimely end. I have a set of Rally IIs and center caps which will be reinstalled as part of my ongoing restoration of the car.

    Interior changes from stock are virtually non. Under the hood I am on engine #3, so #s matching is a long-lost dream at this point. The stock engine was torn apart not long after the new car warranty expired and I bolted up a set of 1969 #62 heads along with a 72 cast intake manifold and a set of 1970 RAIII exhaust manifolds. The stock 067 cam was retained, as were the stock 3.08:1 rear gears. The distributor was recurved with help from HO Racing Specialities and the stock carb was rejetted and tuned for this engine configuration. The car has the stock BW ST-10 4 speed. The exhaust, as described elsewhere, went from factory single exhaust/pellet-type catalytic converter to a 455 SD dual exhaust. This combination lasted approximately 15,000 miles until the hub on the stock harmonic balancer broke. That trashed the entire bottom end of the engine necessitating the build of engine #3. That engine now has over 30,000 miles on it and continues to run well.

    The car was purpose-built for high speed on the Interstate. It will hold it's own on the street but was never intended for a drag racer.

    The paint is all-original, albeit now showing wear from untold miles of triple-digit speeds. One of my connudrums is whether or not to repaint or continue with the orignal paint. After all, it's only original once. :-\ :-\

  2. #2
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    Great car, Rick!

    ..and a 4-speed, too.

    I once owned a '76 LE, 455 4-speed; still have the shaker... the car was totaled by a guy with no insurance who t-boned me after running a red light....

    But I still have my "other" '76! (Pics to come)...

  3. #3
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    Rick,

    Nice T/A! Thanks for posting the photo from the mid 1970s and a now photo. I always like seeing the "then and now" photos of original owner cars. I have always been fond of the exterior Stellar Blue color which your T/A has.

    As for the car not being numbers matching I would not worry. No matter how hard you try "things just happen" and the motor takes a dive like it did in your case with the harmonic balancer declaring its Independence. I remember we discussed this before since my 305 in my low mileage '82 Trans Am decided to throw a rod 5 years ago. Engine expert who looked it over said it was due a factory flaw.

    Can't even begin to tell you how many CB antennas I saw back in the day attached to the trunk of a 2nd generation T/A. It was the in-thing back then. Heck they even had a factory CB option a few years on the Trans Am.

  4. #4
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    Thanks, Pete and Eric.

    For a long time, the CB radio was the only radio in my car, which I guess was fitting because I worked it pretty hard in the course of my vehicular life of sin. During the heyday of CB, the system worked pretty well. If you paid attention and knew what to listen for, you would pretty much know what was happening for 10-15 miles in either direction. It took a lot of concentration, but when you are driving at those speeds you better be paying attention to what you're doing or you won't be doing it for long.

    Unfortunately (and perhaps predictably), by the end of 1976 the CB network was begining to fall apart from overuse/abuse. People started using outlaw transmitters and kids started playing with them like toys. The world's oldest profession began semi-commercial using them also, so the result was that the information being conveyed became unreliable and inaccurate. By the summer of 1977 (and the time Smokey & The Bandit was released) the system had collapsed under it's own weight and became essentially unusable around most populated areas. By early 1978 I had given up and installed an AM/FM cassette stereo setup in my cars.

    I was only tagged once during this time -- in October 1976 I was hauled over by an Indiana State Trooper using a visual clocking technique. I was clocked at a distance of about a mile between the shadows of two overpasses at 25+ MPH over the limit. The penalties for that transgression would have added up to more points that you were allowed to have, but the trooper wrote me "down" to 19.9 MPH over the limit so I avoided a trip to jail and loss of my license. The fine, IIRC, was only $30 at that time. I was *very* careful after that.

  5. #5
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    "Can't even begin to tell you how many CB antennas I saw back in the day attached to the trunk of a 2nd generation T/A. It was the in-thing back then. Heck they even had a factory CB option a few years on the Trans Am."

    Pete,

    You can still see the vague outline of where the CB antenna was once mounted on the trunklid of my TA!

  6. #6
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    "...but when you are driving at those speeds you better be paying attention to what you're doing or you won't be doing it for long. "

    During the "55" era, this was critical!

    76 mph was "reckless driving" in Va. I got several...

  7. #7
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    Re: 75 Trans Am pics

    Rick,

    Its always a bummer when something works so well, it then becomes too popular and the new comers spoil it. Essentially its success ruins it. To illustrate how wide-use or abused the CB was, I remember circa 1981, the local neighborhood watch bought a CB. The protocol was to use the CB in your car when it was your night to be on watch and call back to a guy on call to check in every hour. However the guy was never on the CB, so it created all this chatter. So what did most neighborhood watch patrol participants who knew nothing about the CB with no supervision do? They started played with this new toy, for the three hour neighborhood watch shift. The local CB folks got tired of hearing all the nonsense and teaching CB etiquette every night so their fuses were short. When I would go out with my Dad on patrol being around 12 years old and one of my favorite TV shows being the Dukes of Hazzard at the time - I gloried in talking on the CB. I would mimic the "Lost Sheep" to "Shepard" or vise versa several times in one night which the CB community had heard enough of. So unfortunately I must admit I had my small part in the death of the CB. I did have some interesting conversations, I talked one night to an old lady who told me what she bought at the grocery store that day - the conversation lasted about an hour.


    Eric,

    I forgot those magnetic CB bases though they were removable, if they were in place for some time did leave a slight round ring mark. I never noticed that when I have seen your car in the past. A friend of mine in high school was interested in purchasing a used very nice conditioned 81 Cherokee which was on a used car lot, the vehicle was loaded with many options but had a CB antenna on the roof. My friend was going to buy the Cherokee until he realized he could not remove the antenna, the previous owner had drilled a hole in the roof to run the wire to the antenna and then used some sort of epoxy to permanently affix the antenna to the roof. Can't believe the previous owner was that dumb. I felt sorry for the person who bought the Cherokee and then later on found out he or she was stuck with the CB antenna.


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