As some might remember, I've been working on my 1969 Firebird for a full 15 years at this point. Recently, prompted by a move, I've made some good headway on the car.
Unfortunately since it's been moved to it's temporary home I've run in to a number of snags.
Back when I originally purchased this car, I really wanted something turn key. I didn't have a plan for it other than to drive and enjoy it. After it broke during delivery and the long process of restoring and refurbishing took place, it became more of a build. The problem is I didn't have a plan until I discovered pro-touring. At that point I knew I wanted it low and I wanted it to handle better than a stock first gen f-body.
The problem was I'd already been throwing parts at the car to fix it. Poly bushings, front disc brake conversion, steering arm rebuilds, wheels and tires, etc. I'm know reaping what I sewed with those unplanned decisions.
Now that I've started to put the new suspension in the car, I quickly realized that those unplanned modifications have really put me in a bind. The disc brake conversion being the major culprit. It has increased the track width on the front by 1.5" over stock. Additionally, the wheels I chose for the car don't have the proper backspacing for a F-Body of any vintage. They are wider than the factory wheels at 7" in the front and 8" in the rear, but carry a lower backspacing than factory at 3.8" backspacing vs 4" backspacing. Add to that wide and taller tires than factory, with a lowered suspension and I've got problems.
It would seem like an easy solution to just purchase new wheels. There's lots of great options that don't break the bank. Except for that darn track width change. That change alone means that I can't find wheels that fit both the front and the back while fitting in the fender wells. This means I have to purchase custom wheels, which doubles or more the budget for wheels and tires.
Since the wife and I are in the process of having a house built, that extra expense can't be spared right now. Leaving pretty much any hope of completing the car this year at zero.
I've also got to figure something out with the fuel system. The previous owner put a hopped up 455 in the car, but didn't bother to upgrade the fuel system to support it. I could keep the car carbureted, but I'd need to upgrade the fuel system to a 1/2" sending unit and feed lines along with a large mechanical pump (which needs replaced anyway). I also need a carb that's sized properly for the motor and has an adjustable secondary. By the time I figure all the cost for those items, EFI is starting to look a lot more attractive. Especially considering where I live, you can go from 4500 ft to 8000 ft in altitude in a bit more than an hour. You simply can't tune a carb to deal with those kind of atmospheric pressure changes.
So unfortunately yet another year will pass and the car will primarily sit. On the bright side, in a couple months it'll have a nice shiny place to do all of it's sitting!