Storage Shed Find

15

Asked by Jul 01, 2011 at 09:46 PM about the 1980 Pontiac Firebird

Question type: General

Well I took over a storage shed, and found a prize waiting inside.  Will post more pictures later when I can find my good camera.  Wish I knew what engine this was.  Have to go out with a flashlight and get the casting numbers.  I'm pretty sure the hood scoop is lying to me.

36 Answers

15

More PIctures, horrible pics I know...but it was a quick visit today.

15

Hood

265

why do you think the hood scoop would be lying to you ? .. what year is it ? and also what is the vin ? if you're not sure I have a vin decoder and if you give me the digits I can decode it for you and tell you for sure.

15

As far as the hood I'm just guessing, because as near as I can tell it is a firebird and not a trans am. Its an 80 I think. And if memory serves the biggest stock motor the 80 birds came with was a 301 turbo. I will go out and get the VIN before work today if I can find it. I'm guessing not much on the car is stock and that it was a track car at one point. (Drag slicks in the trunk). Speaking of which, any idea how to open the trunk when the lock assembly is missing? lol Will post when I get home tonight. Thanks for the help Redline.

15

Cant find the engine casting numbers to save my soul. Am fairly certain its not the stock motor. The VIN is as follows *2T87A AL146173. I think its an 8 anyhow, the top part of the upper loop isnt there.

125

The hood is from a '79 T/A. The engine is not a 6.6L. Neither Pontiac 400 or Olds 403. It looks like a 350, but that was available in the Formula Firebird. Can you post pics of the front, sides and rear of the car? What tranny is in it?

15

Yep, that was my guess on the hood too. It has an automatic tranny in at the moment. As far as numbers on that goes...give me a few days to clean the oil slick under the car and I'll slide under and let you know. The body looks like the stock 1980 Esprit body for the most part. I'm guessing the front and rear kits are off the same 79 as the hood as the Esprit didn't have spoilers if memory serves. Thinking it was originally a redbird, from the color in the trunk and the interior. I do appreciate all the help guys, this is my first project so I'm going to be asking a lot of dumb questions.

125

Okay, I have your answer. The car is a 1980 Esprit. Originally had a 3.8L Buick. Built at the Van Nuys plant. The hood is from a 1979 T/A and I still think it currently has a small block Chevy engine in it. Good luck with the project and keep us updated.

15

Planning on getting under the car next week to find the engine casting numbers, will try to find the tranny ones as well. Might be a few days what with the 4th tomorrow and all. So, think I should finish the half assed job they started at making it a T/A clone, or take it back to its Firebird Roots?

looking at where the oil cap -tube is,size of the alt,and the big back openings for the 4 barell carb and a few more notables,its the 455 motor.

15

I really hope you are right Papa :) That would make it a fun car to run against my 01 WS6.

yea im 99 % sure it is the 455,they were the onley ones made with this intake-oil spout.great find.I can tell you it is not the original motor,is a late 70,s motor,had several of them.also the reason for all the wires,in 80 this car was fuel injected.someone went to a lot of work to put this motor in this car,from what I can tell by looking at the pic.it was done right.

15

Yeah, I can tell a lot of work has been done, and the power plant looks solid...its the body work that left me unimpressed. But that is easy enough to rectify. Not bad for a free car huh lol. Knowing myself though, if I don't fix the body and interior first I will just get it running and leave it looking like it does...so its cosmetics first, mechanical later.

125

This car was not fuel injected. It had a carburated 3.8L Buick V-6

125

And the engine in the car right now is not a Pontiac engine.

I beg to differ on this,the last asperated enging was in 79.want to know how i know,my younger sister had a 80 firebird with the fuel injected V6,+ I know cars,been in the business now giong on 40 years.

15

Wow, came here for some help and advice and I get threatened? Thanks.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
125

Pontiac used carburetors up to and including 1988 on various models and engines. The 3.8L in 1980 was not fuel injected or turbo-ed. It had a 2 bbl Rochester.

15

Ok, well then at least we can all agree that it isnt the stock engine lol. As this one is a V8 with a 4 barrel carb. I do apologize for my lack of knowledge I really wasn't looking to start a fight with anyone.

125

No fighting. Just discussions. I'm not always right, but I am a Pontiac man.

15

Oh didnt mean you. Appreciate your help. Was talking about the guy telling me to drop a pair, and how he is going to get my account cancelled. Hey the casting numbers would be on the side of the block below the heads right?

125

Not sure what his problem is. Casting number location will vary on different engines. You might have to dig a little.

15

Cool, thanks...I have noticed some large stamped single letters and numbers in different locations on the block will write those down as well next time I'm out there.

HAY,my mistake,was not replying to you Cannon,must have hit the wrong reply ,It was ment to the guy that said it was not a 455.which it is.you ok.

15

Ok, I was wondering what I did to start that lol. Anyhow was out again today still no luck finding the engine casting numbers. And I do admit I'm new to all this. The only imprint I saw, besides the intake casting number, was a "N" on the block just below the headers.

the N dont mean a thing ,sence it is not the stock motor.

15

Cool, well next task is to replace the fuel pump and line (safety concerns after sitting for so long). Then find a carb to put on and see if I can get her to turn over. Lord knows my ex fiance never would...maybe I'll have better luck with the car :p

their you go.the car is a better play toy anyway.as to check if motor will turn over,use a socket and breaker bar on harmonic balancer bolt,push down on it,see if she turns over.by the way best way to tell you got a big block pointiac motor is the color,yours is a light blue,almost a green looking blue,that is what you have,and you can tell that motor or valve covers have not been painted,that is the original BB color.it does have the chevy disturbor in it,that is ok.good luck with it.

125

So the rant was meant for me? Grow up! How old are you? If you don't watch yourself, you'll be the one kicked off here. I don't care how long you've been around cars, that is NOT a Pontiac 455. DO YOUR HOMEWORK!

125

Would you mind taking a picture of the water pump? That would be helpful.

dont have to do any homework,do you.how old am I,50,your age please.and no i wont be kicked off here,but i can get you kicked out the door.so watch your mouth.

125

I'm 49. You're the one who started with the name calling and bashing me because we disagree. Immature! At your age you can't discuss and debate like an adult? Again, immature! I've done nothing wrong. How would I get kicked off the forum? You on the other hand crossed the line!

no you started it.if im wrong on something prove it dont just say im wrong.if i am ill admit it,just saying it dont mean squat.you new here,i been here so long i got connections that take my advice on trouble makers.so be carefull on what you post.lets just all get along.

125

I'm the trouble maker? I've stated facts! What I don't know I research, which I did on this topic. All you've given is your thoughts and recollections. As for the engine currently in this car, it appears to be an older small block Chevy, possibly out of a truck. Note that I said "appears". As for your statement on the "big back openings for the 4 bbl carb", that has nothing to do with a big block. Any intake for a Rochester quadrajet with look like that. Big block and small block. As for Pontiac engines, there is no big and small block. 326, 389, 400, 421, 428, and 455. All the same size block. Now to finish this off, I never wanted to start a fight or be involved in one. The guy asked for help and that's what I tried to offer. I LOVE trying to solve problems like this. We're all car guys, and we will disagree. To the member who sarted this topic, I hope I was of some help. I would like to see a picture of the water pump though. That would most likely solve the "what is this engine?" issue. If I am no longer needed, or wanted on this topic, I will no longer post.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Its clearly "Not" a Pontiac motor. It is indeed a V8. There's no need to see a pic of the water pump. You can see plenty of it already. As you can see the hose that goes to the heater/AC box that comes off the pump is in the wrong place. That hose can only come off the pass side of the timming cover on ALL Pontiac V8's motors any year. The exhaust manifolds give the best clue. The exhaust ports are straight out of the heads like the SBC it is. Pontiac's had there exhaust ports turn down & you will see the entire head before seeing the exh manifolds that will be under the ports facing the ground. His second pic shows the etire top of the Chevy exh manifold. Rolland is correct. There's NO SB or BB Pontiac. Just small main 3" up to 400cid & large 3 1/4" mains 421-455cid. All outside dimensions are the same & a 326 cid can pass as a 455 in appearance. Only the 301 (junk) & 303 (extremely rare tunnelport RAV) are short decks. The 301 looks identical in appearance to the other Pontiac's. The 303 block looks the same from the outside but heads & intake appear to have a cross between Ford & Pontiac characteristics. Whats this about a Pontiac with a Chevy Dist? Impossible, the Pontiac is much shorter & only goes 3 7/8" into the block. The Chevy goes a few inches deeper into the block. So there's clearly no way they can be used between motors. The HEI caps look identical from the outside although I don't know if they could be used for both, I would doubt it though.

125

Thank you!

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