BUILD THREAD Project Wrong Way Regal Wagon

zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#1
So ill start the build thread with a story. Some might find it funny, maybe not think there lucks so bad..

So I started out a few months ago. Acquiring parts for a new build project. Find a car in North Dakota, arrange shipping back to Michigan. Buy it. Company backs out end up going with a friend to get it. On easter weekend on the way back in Minnesota hear a grinding noise going thru a parking lot. Bail out to find a dollar bill size hole in the transfer case. No parts anywhere and 10pm at night on a Saturday had to work Monday and we were 800 miles from home we slept a little and woke up to snow. Got the idea to pump the t case full of grease and duck tape the hole shut. So we did, stopping every couple hours and babying it till we got to Michigan. Once we were in Michigan we were running 80+ hoping it was gunna break prior to the bridge if it was going to. Stop in st Ignace to find only the winch and park break holding the car on out for 3 strap's. Put more on and crossed the bridge to make it home.
fb_img_1471615858821-jpg.53759


Fast forward about a month collecting an lq4 and 2wd 4l80e on the cheap. Decide to measure the car for a cage. Pull the seats measure to find that what I wanted for so many years now wasn't going to pan out and after feeling sick to my stomach for a week or so I decided no matter how much I cut and chopped the car wasnt going to be streetable.
fb_img_1472003815743-jpg.53760

Anybody figured out the car I've always wanted, yeah, wasnt a regal. It was in fact a Vega wagon.
fb_img_1472003826510-jpg.53761

So I sold the car.
 
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#2
And bought this gem
img_20160823_182611792-jpg.53762
For 225$ its a southern car and has a very straight body, at one point had hydros on it lol.
I know I posted on the wagon section and some of you may know my plan basically doing a 2 door wagon the "wrong way" one of the main reasons for this is, its Michigan and its very hard to fins wagons, 2 I want to keep the regal tail lights which is my favorite part of all the g body cars, 3 I don't like working inside the norm and how its turning out I'll probably end up fabricating most of the rood section did have someone do a photoshop for me I think the roof line angle at the back needs a little changing and the c pillar will end up being wider
_20160823_201251-jpg.53763
 
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#3
My goals for the car are;
Handle alot better then normal g body
Would like to have 700~wheel on e85 tune
Be able to street and daily car
Stuff 315~ tires rear, 295~ front
Scare the crap out of my father at test and tune
Not kill me in the process

Engine is the same lq4 freshly machined and painted, cam is 225/230 600/600 lift 113lsa +⁴, moral link bar lifters, home ported heads and cheap stainless up and forward headers. Going for 4" set back on the engine in the car. And am hoping for 10 point cage but for sure will at least have 6 point
Trans will be 4l80 with 3400ish stall
Rear end will be 9" looking for a floater, have a lot of friends that run them I'm dirt track racing I'll come across a deal on one sooner or later
 
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#4
img_20160807_184116639-jpg.53818

New king main, and rod bearings. Por15 engine enamel pack would recommend the coating probably have enough to paint 2 engines. Engine scraped up and ready for paint
img_20160809_102129453-1600x900-jpg.53821

Engine primed with base coat
img_20160809_140636656-1600x900-jpg.53822

And finally in Cadillac dark blue. Really wanted plum crazy purple but of course my luck being so great they didn't offer it
img_20160814_180622475-1200x2133-jpg.53823

Then ended up dingle ball honing the cylinders
(long story short, engine has been apart for 5 months 2 different machine shops and less then impressed with either)
Now I'm waiting on a set of rings because machine shop lost my old ones that were on the gen 3 rods. So out with the old and in with the new. Motor is a 2000 3/4 ton pickup motor. Bought a set of gen 4 rods and pistons with the floating wrist pins when the new rings get here I'll be gapping top 2 rings to .028" and plastigaging the rod bearing
Main bearings gauged at .0015 with one odball that was roughly .0012 not bad for a 180k motor I paid 200$ for complete
 
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#5
fb_img_1472165834516-jpg.53894

I know it doesn't match a lot of peoples taste but it even tho this is just a render. I gather a lot of insperation from this picture. It is WAY outside the norm for g bodies and kind of the wide tire road race feel that I want to get out of my regal wagon when its ”drive able " ( won't say done, Lord knows they never are done)
 
Longroof79

Longroof79

Geezer
Oct 14, 2008
9,783
5,469
113
Gainesville, Fl
#6
Zeth,
I would truly like to see you build that Regal wagon. The photoshopped rendering is way cool...I like it.
I dig the Vega wagon, too. You just don't see those cars anymore. I guess many of them rusted out, and whatever cars are left probably became race cars.
 
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#7
Zeth,
I would truly like to see you build that Regal wagon. The photoshopped rendering is way cool...I like it.
I dig the Vega wagon, too. You just don't see those cars anymore. I guess many of them rusted out, and whatever cars are left probably became race cars.
I'm having the Photoshop version altered a little to widen the c pillars and maybe lay them a little more forward. And I appreciate the encouragement.
Yeah the Vega's were definitely they're own animal. The quality control and that prevention was less then desirable. The one I had I picked up super cheap it was very clean of rust but had dents all over. The cars were super chincey all the metal was super thin. But I can remember back to when I was 5 or 6 my uncle had a cosworth vega, I thought the world of that car, revved to the moon and back. But after getting the car it was more of a should have been left as a memory type deal.

It'll be a slow build but its going to happen I'm in the process of moving right now but I'm just collecting engine parts and trying to do one piece at a time while the car is at the new house and the engine here at the rental
 
Longroof79

Longroof79

Geezer
Oct 14, 2008
9,783
5,469
113
Gainesville, Fl
#8
I'm having the Photoshop version altered a little to widen the c pillars and maybe lay them a little more forward. And I appreciate the encouragement.
Yeah the Vega's were definitely they're own animal. The quality control and that prevention was less then desirable. The one I had I picked up super cheap it was very clean of rust but had dents all over. The cars were super chincey all the metal was super thin. But I can remember back to when I was 5 or 6 my uncle had a cosworth vega, I thought the world of that car, revved to the moon and back. But after getting the car it was more of a should have been left as a memory type deal.

It'll be a slow build but its going to happen I'm in the process of moving right now but I'm just collecting engine parts and trying to do one piece at a time while the car is at the new house and the engine here at the rental
Photoshopping is a cool thing. It will at least give you an indication of what the car could look like. Let's face it, photoshopping is a lot easier than cutting, fabricating, and welding.
It's absolutely doable. You just have to formulate a plan (and budget), find all the donor parts that will be needed to carry out this project.
For as long as I can remember, I had plans of turning my wagon into a 2-dr. Going to the junkyard to take measurements and see how certain body panels were fitted, etc.. I've given up the idea when I found it was difficult finding a good donor 2-dr body to scavenge the doors, B-pillars, and quarter panel sections, which you can use the rear doors as filler. I think it was the glass situation that concerned me most of all.
The cutting, welding, and fitting is kinda fun and creative.

Yeah, Vegas were real rust buckets. They were cool, though. A small wagon like that with a small cubic inch smallblock would have been killer. I haven't seen a Cosworth in many years. My former dentist had one that was really nice. Typical black with gold trim and stripes.

Keep us up to date on your project. If you need any encouragement, you'll certainly get plenty of it on this site. Don't be afraid to ask questions either. That's what we're here for for.
 
Last edited:
zeth hale

zeth hale

Greasemonkey
Aug 12, 2016
227
187
43
clare, Michigan
#9
Photoshopping is a cool thing. It will at least give you an indication of what the car could look like. Let's face it, photoshopping is a lot easier than cutting, fabricating, and welding.
It's absolutely doable. You just have to formulate a plan (and budget), find all the donor parts that will be needed to carry out this project.
For as long as I can remember, I had plans of turning my wagon into a 2-dr. Going to the junkyard to take measurements and see how certain body panels were fitted, etc.. I've given up the idea when I found it was difficult finding a good donor 2-dr body to scavenge the doors, B-pillars, and quarter panel sections, which you can use the rear doors as filler. I think it was the glass situation that concerned me most of all.
The cutting, welding, and fitting is kinda fun and creative.

Yeah, Vegas were real rust buckets. They were cool, though. A small wagon like that with a small cubic inch smallblock would have been killer. I haven't seen a Cosworth in many years. My former dentist had one that was really nice. Typical black with gold trim and stripes.

Keep us up to date on your project. If you need any encouragement, you'll certainly get plenty of it on this site. Don't be afraid to ask questions, either. That's what we're here for for.
Yeah I'm no stranger to body mods and welding hopefully the thread stays on track but I started this
fb_img_1472231038635-jpg.53918
when I was 19 dad didn't approve so I had to do all the work outside. Have almost 200 hours messing around on my old suburban turning it into a unibody pickup. Its all converted to 1 ton Dana 60 front, full float 14 bolt rear. And a garage full of Cummins parts lol (I'm a diesel mechanic during the day)
fb_img_1472231080657-jpg.53919

She just sits there waiting for a new heart. Been a months since I worked on it. But when I close on the new house I'll have all my treasures/junk in one place :)
 
Longroof79

Longroof79

Geezer
Oct 14, 2008
9,783
5,469
113
Gainesville, Fl
#10
That's a cool truck. So, you converted a Suburban into a crew cab pickup....alright...I like it.
You've obviously spent time cutting and fabbing metal. I think you're ready to take on the wagon project...well, after you get settled into your new digs of, course.
I'll be following your progress.. ;)
 

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