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Wow what a day. Started out by installing my flywheel clutch set up, then trying to stab the tranny. That's always fun. Never mind that the engine is out and it still wants to kick my a##. My car is on stands so I figure that will make it easier if I need to get under with the jack to to raise the transmission. problem is the lift leaves me 2" short:cuss:, so I have to reposition, drop the engine extend the hoist one more hole. So then it's time for the engine/tranny install which I have always done together since I was knee high to a grasshopper. Only, not with ram air manifolds. You can probably guess where this is going. I get it 2/3 of the way and I am stuck. Ended up having to pull the manifolds, then set the engine/trans combo. At that point I figured that I have had enough of a beating for one day. Moral of the story.Engine trans combo will not install w/ RA manifolds. But you will get the pleasure of installing them later Lol.,
 

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man I hear ya! Murphy's law. when working on these 50 year old cars anything that can go wrong will go wrong at the worst possible time.
Your post is useful to know as I'm thinking of getting the RAiv round port exhaust manifolds for my motor build and I was thinking I could bolt them on while on the engine stand and install the motor.
I just installed a new rear end in my 69' yesterday and spent 3 hours on the concrete running around with my floor jack and wrestling with control arm bolts, got 7 of them to go in, then the last one on one of the uppers would not line up with the through hole on the other end, I kept using my drift to flex the bushing but the new bolts have squared off ends and it would always catch. I finally ended up using 1 of the original grade 8 bolts with the tapered nose to get it to go.
Why we work on these old cars indeed, hobby, art, nostalgia. if I was younger I'd buy me a 900 hp Hellcat and be done with it. But I still love my old GTO's !
 

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ALWAYS expect problems, then when it goes together without a hitch, your reeeallly happy. LOL

RMTZ67 - Installing the engine/trans as either a unit or separately both have their pros and cons. As a unit, if you have the nose of the car still on, you have to lift it high enough to clear the pan over the radiator support, then you have to get the installation angle correct, the balance adjusted, pull the trans tail down to clear the firewall all the while bumping it. Then try to get the engine/trans somewhat level by jacking up under the trans just enough so you can drop the engine mounts over the engine cradle mounts. Of course, much easier with the front end sheet metal off.

Split it up, the engine goes in nicely, but now you have to tilt the engine down slightly at the rear so the trans doesn't hit the transmission tunnel, then lift/balance the trans on your floor jack at just the right angle while trying to roll it into place hoping it doesn't slip off on you, work on your back/belly, and fight it to get the pilot shaft on the input shaft to go into the pilot bushing (always test fit my pilot bushing on the pilot shaft just to make sure it will go). Then sometimes it slips all the way forward and seats while other times you have to use one of the trans bolts to draw the tranny forward that last 1/2"-3/4" being aware that you cannot use too much torque on the bolt or you could break the trans ear off.

So it is almost half a dozen of one, and six of the other. I have also installed my engines with the factory cast iron exhaust manifolds on. The RA manifolds are larger and have read here on the forums that clearances are tight, so we all learned not to install them until after the engine is in place. I like to use studs instead of exhaust manifold bolts. Now I wonder if you could install the RA manifolds with the studs sticking out of the heads because you would need additional room to slip them over and onto the studs - probably not the thing to do. :thumbsup:

clevelandpartsguy - I just pulled a rear end assembly out of a 1969 Olds Cutlass yesterday. What I found as I unbolted it, and because I save some of the good mounting bolts, was that the upper control arm bolts that attach to the rear housing had the flat ends while the lower control arm bolts used the taper end.

Installation can be more of a problem with all new bushings as opposed to the sloppy or worn out ones on an original car. Sometimes I get a little inventive. Have used a pipe wrench fitted over the top of the control arm as it can be adjusted to grip the square-ish shape of the arm, and then pull it to tweak the arm at just the right angle while installing the bolt. The bolt never seems to be a problem going into the hole, the problem is always where it comes out through the other side as it hangs up. The pipe wrench can be a real handy tool working on these older cars, and not just for the plumber.

And, sometimes by raising or lowering the rear end assembly it can change the angle of the control arms to ease bolt installation.

But, the tapered end on the bolts is the way to go. When you typically replace the control arm bolts (I use Grade 8 from my local Tractor Supply Company store) or get a non-factory kit of bolts and nuts, I will grind a taper on the end of the bolt. I install the nut first, leave plenty of stick out past the nut, then grind a taper on the end. Then I back off the nut, use a little drop of oil on the ground threads and work the nut on/off the threads to clean them up so I can reinstall the nut once I have the bolts in. The taper end is the way to go and most likely why the factory bolts have that taper to self align those control arms. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
man I hear ya! Murphy's law. when working on these 50 year old cars anything that can go wrong will go wrong at the worst possible time.
Your post is useful to know as I'm thinking of getting the RAiv round port exhaust manifolds for my motor build and I was thinking I could bolt them on while on the engine stand and install the motor.
I just installed a new rear end in my 69' yesterday and spent 3 hours on the concrete running around with my floor jack and wrestling with control arm bolts, got 7 of them to go in, then the last one on one of the uppers would not line up with the through hole on the other end, I kept using my drift to flex the bushing but the new bolts have squared off ends and it would always catch. I finally ended up using 1 of the original grade 8 bolts with the tapered nose to get it to go.
Why we work on these old cars indeed, hobby, art, nostalgia. if I was younger I'd buy me a 900 hp Hellcat and be done with it. But I still love my old GTO's !
Ya, even tougher when we are older than the car:lol: I used a lot of the gold grade 8 bolts and had to grind a small taper into some. Seems like the engine and ram air manifolds would fit without the trans connected as it would simply drop straight down. The problem I had was the bell housing hitting the firewall and 1/2" of the manifold hitting. By the way, do you know if these ram air manifolds came originally with the steel gaskets? My remflex? or whatever they were called were toast after removing my manifolds.They are a one time use gasket even w/o heat. I have two pair of the metal gaskets lying around. They seem to work w/o leaks on my stock manifolds.:confused Or should I just get a new set of gaskets
 

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Ya, even tougher when we are older than the car:lol: I used a lot of the gold grade A bolts and had to grind a small taper into some. Seems like the engine and ram air manifolds would fit without the trans connected as it would simply drop straight down. The problem I had was the bell housing hitting the firewall and 1/2" of the manifold hitting. By the way, do you know if these ram air manifolds came originally with the steel gaskets? My remflex? or whatever they were called were toast after removing my manifolds.They are a one time use gasket even w/o heat. I have two pair of the metal gaskets lying around. They seem to work w/o leaks on my stock manifolds.:confused Or should I just get a new set of gaskets
I am not sure on the gaskets. They seem to be personal preference/experience things. There are so many different types and materials that claim they are the best and they won't burn out. First thing is that I might make sure that the mating surface on the RA manifolds are indeed flat. With aftermarket items, I feel you need to do a little extra checking in spite of manufacturers claims.

After you run the engine and heat cycle it from driving it, I would go back and re-torque/tighten the exhaust bolts as they can loosen up a bit and maybe this will help to prevent a gasket failure.

So you are on your own as to gasket selection. :yesnod:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Wondered that myself several times!!

Because you are young at heart and when you are done you can admire your work and enjoy!!!

And this doesn't hurt!!! /images/GTOforum_2016/smilies/tango_face_wink.png

Dan, A picture is worth a thousand words. Thanks for the renewed inspiration.
 

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I'm only a few years younger than mine and threatened to sell the damned thing more than once (two engine rebuilds in one month didn't help). I'm glad I didn't - it's only money and time and well worth the drive once you are back on the road... I started to drive mine before the dash was in because I could not stand the wait any longer.

Keep up the good work and keep moving forward!

View attachment 118593
 
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