Ole Sunbird getting better and better!! - First Generation Forum

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Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Monday, October 02, 2017 9:59 AM
Got to put a few miles on the Sunbird this weekend. Still gotta be careful because the axle shafts are next on my to do list. Still it was pretty surreal to actually cruise around town driving this car trouble free, because ever since I got this car I've had to baby it because that cam and head was in such poor condition.

The timing belt is still resonating on me even though I loosened it up a bit Sunday during the oil change. I did manage to get to the water pump without having to removing the alternator and power steering pump this time. So I will tap it back a bit more the next time I get a chance. Only other issue is the idle is higher I'd like it to be - but if it is like the old Wagon, it probably will settle down the more I use it.

Here is a couple of Videos - 1st one is the engine years ago when it was ticking and clacking away with its poor cam and head. 2nd one is this weekend a lot quieter now.

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMiLbhRqXV5EWEU0dKTpETq7UAnqHP3hzKoj_PHkTjfBC964PQL4vCduVPR-mCDyw/photo/AF1QipPYmymfpVsT5kLjrA_q-Kmf2C3kgdssHBZdxb3s?key=bnRMbDltQ1ZjVkFtV3BKX0R1em 1tRENkcl9rLWRn

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMiLbhRqXV5EWEU0dKTpETq7UAnqHP3hzKoj_PHkTjfBC964PQL4vCduVPR-mCDyw/photo/AF1QipOmxsP2WCd0GEju6YYZt6qNLTmweYlSr3p2yEvL?key=bnRMbDltQ1ZjVkFtV3BKX0R1em 1tRENkcl9rLWRn

And a few photos for good measure.....

What is that shiny thing on top???? Why it is a happy Bling Valve Cover courtesy of Paul Steepe - and I bet he thought I'd never get around to using it too....Hahaa!!











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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Wednesday, October 04, 2017 4:39 PM
Sounds much better, and the valve cover Looks awesome!




Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Sunday, October 08, 2017 11:54 AM
Just a couple more before I covered the ole Pontiac back up - I sure hated to put the car covers and tarps back on now that I've got it running again. Nice , though, to have an 1st Gen that is enjoyed and appreciated - it will get lots more use now tat it is running well.

It is running like it is 1984 again - sounds like a little sewing machine!! This is in drive and all warmed up. Sunshine really blings that shiny Valve Cover!

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipOvWoKN1zAFjqfYqCE-PU3pqEBK_m0rZC0G6-BkxXov9dJx5Dj5UGrlyEsofgLO1w/photo/AF1QipOzM3k7eKuWMWMQlc3kHp6VtGWflFDzq4BdzZDV?key=SXlxT081TDFQY2JsVW16TklkSl 9Pa2syWGJsRXN3


And a nice fall photo just before backing it in the back yard....





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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Saturday, October 14, 2017 6:10 AM
WOW Orlen - your are giving me some competition in the clean engine bay department.

Outstanding!




Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Monday, October 16, 2017 5:29 PM
Man, that sounds good!





Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Wednesday, October 25, 2017 11:46 AM
Nice work orlen! I know I have not been on here in a Long while.Just had some back issue's and just went yesterday back to the neurosurgery doctor for a follow up.I have to get yet another shot in my lower back for arthritis that is just kicking my @@@ literally.Great video and just on some pain meds in the time being. Ron



Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Saturday, October 28, 2017 3:22 PM
Well.......it's about time Ron!!

I been wondering where you been hiding lately, been worried about you!!! Glad to see you are still around and about - if still suffering from that terrible back of yours.

If only Doctors were as good at fixing people up as they were at taking everyones money.........well I guess that kinda falls out of the scope of this site, doesn't it.

It is GREAT to see you better enough to grace us with your posts again, Ron. I hope the Wife and home are doing well. I'm sure your little fleet, as like my own - keeps life from getting boring. Always something crawling out of the wish list and to do bin...



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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Saturday, October 28, 2017 8:00 PM
Thanks and I posted earlier today on mikes cav wagon running bad.I had to revive my old post on the 1985 fuel pumps as there no longer made,but the 1986 is the same!I know when my fuel pump was going my car ran like do do and makes you think its everything else.Plugs,wires,dis cap and or eng modile and or egr or 02 sensor.I do go for another shot this week in my back and that should help a ton! If your fuel pump fails I think the 86 would work as well just for reference,.It is the same stuff just two years newer.Thanks Ron



Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Thursday, November 09, 2017 2:47 PM
Hey Orlen,

My offer still stands on the 84 convertible.

Here is a link to my CL ad.

I would like this car go to a good home and not just be a winter beater.

https://boston.craigslist.org/nwb/cto/d/1984-cavalier-convertible/6372422485.html











Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Wednesday, March 07, 2018 5:02 PM
The Journey Continues :

3 Years ago this hood was on a donor in a N.C. salvage yard. Thanks to Ron Love it didn't go to the crusher with the rest of the car. FINALLY!!! I got this project finished and ready to bolt on the Pontiac this summer. Gotta say it is much more enjoyable when I can take my time though!! Top of this hood got 2 rust inhibitor coats,3 primer coats and 3 color coats













Now on to the Decklid with Spoiler:

Such Poetic Gearheading.......

Remember the only fool to see this nightmare will be yours truly when I open the hood or trunk!










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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Monday, March 19, 2018 12:30 PM
Progress





Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Monday, March 19, 2018 4:40 PM
Great job Orlen!
Doug in P.R.


92 Pontiac Sunbird LE, 2.0, AT, Red / Black with Grey 148K miles. Hurricane Maria Surviver! ( It takes a licking and keeps on ticking ! ).....in Salinas, Puerto Rico!




Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Thursday, March 22, 2018 11:09 AM
Car looks good, keep the rust controlled and it will last forever.






Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Tuesday, March 27, 2018 9:38 AM
Looking good there!! I like progress too....

I just a 84 Cav in the yard when I went hunting for for parts for our 2003 Cav.....looked picked over though! (still had some solid stuff though) Had been a while since I had seen a first gen...

And I missed a chance with a Vert? Dang, need to peek in here more often......


http://www.autorentalandsales.com/images/2004Cavalier005.JPG
Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Wednesday, March 28, 2018 12:23 PM
Turned out great.I know I have not been on here in forever working on getting a part time job then go back to trucking.R



Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Wednesday, June 06, 2018 3:36 PM
Update Orlen?

Doug in P.R.


92 Pontiac Sunbird LE, 2.0, AT, Red / Black with Grey 148K miles. Hurricane Maria Surviver! ( It takes a licking and keeps on ticking ! ).....in Salinas, Puerto Rico!




Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Thursday, June 07, 2018 8:06 AM
Sadly I haven't even had a chance to pop the Bird out of its cocoon yet, this year , Doug.

I have been up to my ears involved in perking up a '91 Cutlass Ciera that adopted me earlier this year. Picked it up from a co-worker for $500 and ran like a top - but had been neglected for several years. The 1st - 2 owners were in family and took very good care of the machanics but owner #3 just ran the wheels off and I have been working on that (as owner #4) for several months now. I have a library sized list of stuff I have gotten done on this one, but won't drag J-Body owners through the mud with all that!

The poor ole Wagon had been screaming to have the top repainted all winter long, and I finally have it stripped down with 2 coats of rust inhibitor now - ready for the primer coats to begin. With the Olds taking up daily duties, I now have time to let the Wagon and the Bird retire and just be casual cruisers. Been buying up some new tires for some of those 13" wheels I have collected through the years. Just got a set of 175/80 (yes .....80!!) 13's for the Fiero/Sunbird 13" alloys for the mid 80's. Those 80 series help fill up the wheel wells and stand out nowadays in a world full of wide - ultra low profile everything out there. I was able to pick up a copper radiator and transmission cooling hoses during the winter and also a pair of axle shafts all fot the Bird , so I do have a nice list of things to get done on it when I finally get the top in order again on the Wagon.

Adding to the fact is nowadays I just don't seem to be able to get as much done in a day as it seemed I used to back in the day!! Could it be my memory is a a little clouded or perhaps I just might be getting older? Naaa!! LoL

So hopefully in a couple of months I ought to have a little something to show. It is nice to have been able to invest in some parts and get some things done this year and last year. I might just get to scoot around in the Sunbird some this year! Now that would really be something different!!


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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Friday, June 08, 2018 7:15 AM
Was just wondering Orlen, thought you were painting the hood and rear spoiler.

Doug in P.R.



92 Pontiac Sunbird LE, 2.0, AT, Red / Black with Grey 148K miles. Hurricane Maria Surviver! ( It takes a licking and keeps on ticking ! ).....in Salinas, Puerto Rico!




Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Monday, July 02, 2018 8:44 AM
Well, by golly, I had some time and pretty weather combination to pull back the tarps and turn the wrenches on the Pontiac

I was shocked to discover the paint is still basically in the same condition since the last time I had it out back in the fall of last year. Installed the new copper radiator and factory style transmission cooling lines - everything was a snap except for the upper radiator transmission line refusing to seal completely. I finally won that battle through perseverence!
Lossened up the timing belt just a little to get rid of the belt resonance that was driving me nuts at every traffic light last year. Yes the Power Steering belt had to come off , and yes the Alternator had to come off so that I could loosen the Power Steeing Pump. I can sympathize with Richard Pezzenti desiring a belt tensioner so one doesn't have to go all the way down to adjust that Water Pump. Truly, I didn't mind a bit though since I enjoy tinkering on the Ole Bird, but I must admit folks had to have gotten very frustrated with the Brazil Engine back in the '80's when these cars were daily drivers getting people around with minimal downtime.

All the effort was rewarded , though, when I finally got to turn the key she fired right up to my surprise. The car runs like a top and I finally got to put some care free miles on the clock this past weekend. At the end of my travels I decided to go out on the highway.....and it was then the Coolant Temp Idiot Light gave me a fuss. After I got back off the highway and ran the heater a bit and kept the cooling fan turned on ( I have ALL my old cars set up with a switch to cut the fan on) it calmed back down and the drive home was uneventful. I pulled over to take a look-see under the hood , but I didn't see anything to suspect it was running hot. Bad weather was forming up and I had to rush home and cover the Ole Bird up so I didn't get a chance to let it cool down and check the radiator. It is possible the highway run might have purged some air pockets in the cooling system. The TCC is disconnected (the convetor clutch sticks) so the engine runs faster too, Also I have read the transmission tends to run hotter on the highways than it would with the convertor locked up too. What ever the reason, the Brazil Engine has the easiest thermostat in the world to remove, so I can run it this summer with it out if the overheating persists. I have plans to purchase a new thermostat and also an aluminum radiator if it continues to act up. First thing on my to-do list , though, is a mechanical themp gauge to replace that idiot light!!

Short of the overheating situation, the car runs like a dream, and I am just about at the end of the tunnel with this car. It has been many years getting to this point. I want to send out a BIG Thank-You to the guys on here that have help out along the way. Your advice and input have been priceless!! Couldn't have done it without you!! :-)


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Re: Ole Sunbird getting better and better!!
Saturday, October 13, 2018 5:04 PM
After Philip posted his huge job today this trival stuff I do looks positively silly - Hahaa......

Finally!! No more guessing

Now I won't have to rely on an idiot light to scare the helluva me!! Just decided to mount on the ash tray cover since the lid is missing and I am going to install a console in place of the little shifter pod anyways.





The hood is finally on, Ron!! Life is so crazy - after all that work ( and only God knows why) when I put the hood on the color isn't the same. Disappointed I am....but it ain't the end of the world. As always, it is nothing a little sandpaper and a bit of paint cant fix.









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