Monday, August 14, 2017

Pace Car Air Dam For My 76 Vette | Part 1

For the model year 1978, the Corvette Indy Pace Car edition featured a distinctive front air dam that not only gave the car a more aggressive look but also helped improve its drag coefficient.

In addition to the front air dam, the car also featured a "duck tail" style rear spoiler, also made out of urethane.

But for the 1976 Stingray, those accessories were not available and my car featured a functional chin air dam whose mission was to help direct air to the front of the radiator. Functional, yes. Sexy, definitely not.

Sometimes I want to keep my car all original, but I also like for it to look cool and, frankly, I love how the '78 Pace Car looks with the air dam. I am not 100% sold on the rear spoiler (yet), but I am seriously thinking about it.

Anyway, I checked online and there are two options if you want to add a front air dam. Fiberglass or urethane. The factory used a three-piece urethane air dam which is what I decided to use on mine. Fiberglass can be tricky if the fit is not exactly right and it will crack or break if you hit something stationary, while urethane tends to be a little more forgiving because of its rubber-like consistency.

Eckler's Corvette had the right part and, lucky for me, was offering a 10% discount when I decided to make my purchase, so I placed my order and the brand new air dam was delivered the very next day.

Of course, these pieces come "natural," and a little bit of preparation is required, but this should be minimal because of the excellent quality of the parts. There will always be a small amount of mold flashing but any competent auto body shop should be able to take care of that without any issues.

According to Eckler's, the pieces are installed using most of the factory anchor points, but you have to drill a hole in each fender to attach the side deflectors, which come with the necessary studs and nuts.

I will check with a couple of auto body shops to see if they can match the shade of red on my car so everything looks even color wise, and will also ask them to prep the pieces properly, cleaning them up and patching any pin holes or any other small imperfections before applying primer followed by paint.

Plus, because these pieces have a little "give," the shop will have to use a flexing agent for both the primer and top coat.

Installation should not be a big deal, but I may let them take care of everything.

And once that's done, I will decide whether to get the rear spoiler to complete the "aero package."

Stay tuned for photos of the air dam painted and installed.

Here are a couple of pics I found online that show how great the front air dam looks, and the more I look at that red Vette, the more I like how the rear spoiler looks.

As always, thanks for following my '76 Corvette Stingray blog.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

"All Corvettes are Red..." 8/5/2017

Photos of red C3 Corvettes I happen to find during my Internet travels.

"All Corvettes are red. The rest are mistakes."
—John Heinricy | Racecar Driver and Corvette Assistant Chief Engineer (Ret.)

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Corvette Mako Shark II Concept Car

One from the Chevrolet archives, featuring the Corvette Mako Shark II concept car built under the direction of General Motors Design Chief, Bill Mitchell.

Above: YouTube video by King Rose Archives.

  Above: Bill Mitchell and the Mako Shark II.

Above: Two Mako Shark generations.

Above: The 1968 Chevrolet Corvette.

There's no mistake where the C3's beautiful styling inspiration came from, and one of the reasons why the C3 body style remains popular today. The C3 was the longest-running Corvette generation, from 1968 through 1982, a total of fifteen model years.

Thanks for following.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Cars & Coffee at Gateway Classic Cars | July 29, 2017

Just got home from this month's Cars & Coffee at Gateway Classic Cars of Orlando, in Lake Mary. I left before the end of the event since it looked like rain, but got caught in it a few miles down the road. Thank God the a/c works, otherwise I would've suffocated in my Vette.

I arrived at GCC early this morning in order to secure a good (read, "shaded") parking spot but this being Florida in July, it was already muggy at 8:30 am.

Above: Another C3 at today's Cars & Coffee.
The folks at Gateway always take care of everyone by providing not only a great venue, but also fresh coffee and plenty of pastries, which is greatly appreciated.

This is one of the few events I attend where I have loads of fun and gain a few pounds at the same time. Just kidding!

DJ Don of Cruisin Orlando provides great tunes and commentary for those in attendance.

Here are a few pics of my car, as well as Vincent Giglio's beautiful 1974 Corvette coupe. Every time I see his car it reminds me of how great the factory side pipes look on C3s. One of these days I will have to get a set.

Enjoy the photos.

Below: My 1976 Corvette Stingray.

Above: If you've been following my blog for a while you know by now that I love my '76 Stingray
and, therefore, I keep posting photos of it, even though you've seen enough of it.

Below: Vincent's 1974 Stingray Coupe "Split Bumper."

Above: Not as dark as my Stingray's shade of red but also a non-factory color. 

Above: OEM side pipes look right on C3s or any vintage.
Above: Pretty stock other than for the aftermarket steering wheel, radio, and cup holder.

Above: I've always liked this nose emblem a lot better than mine.
And one of the reasons why the one on my car is gone.
Above: '74s had a functional cowl induction system.

Above: Corvette L-82 motor... with a few upgrades.

Above: And now you know why '74s are referred to as "Split Bumper" Corvettes.

Thanks for following my '76 Stingray blog!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Photo Shoot of my 1976 Corvette Stingray

Sometimes, finding a suitable location to photograph a car can be the hardest portion of a photo shoot.

Fortunately, my good friend and automotive photographer extraordinaire Russ Muller suggested the SunRail station parking lot in neighboring DeBary, FL.

And what a great location it proved to be.

Although the place is extremely busy during weekdays with commuters traveling to Orlando, we literally had the place to ourselves Saturday morning. So we found a good spot to park and Russ got busy snapping photos of my Vette.

Here are some photos I shot while Russ did his thing.


Oftentimes, in order to capture the lines of a C3 Corvette, a photographer needs to get into "interesting" positions as the photo below shows. But the resulting photograph can be worth the effort.

As far as I know, few people are able to capture Corvette C3 bodylines like Russ can.

For more info and samples of his car photography visit his Facebook page.

Thanks for following.