75 Malibu family car budget build

Discussion in 'Station Wagon Projects' started by burners, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    I've only made a brief introduction of myself in the welcome wagon section http://www.stationwagonforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13046 and that was several months ago. I've been steadily working on the car (with a few interruptions) since that time so I'll update this thread with all of that. The car needed(s) a lot of work in pretty much every area from electrical to suspension, engine, interior, paint...you get the idea. This is going to be the primary family car so just about everything needs to be working. Here is how it looked at the start of this project.


    [​IMG]


    I need to add a 3rd row seat so I can fit my (soon to be) 4 kids. So the immediate priorities are:


    -Fix electrical. Power window, dash lights
    -Tune engine
    -Rebuild suspension
    -Fix steering as needed. Leaks and sloppy parts
    -Interior
    -3rd row seat and seat belts
    -Get A/C going
    -Door hinges and strikers


    Just a few things, haha. Time to get crackin'.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2011
  2. tbirdsps

    tbirdsps New Member Charter Member

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    That's a nice looking one. The only one of that style I like better is the I think 1976 with the quad stacked rectangular headlights.:cheers:
     
  3. fannie

    fannie Well-Known Member

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    Glad you found time to post up a retso thread, that's a long list you got there and 3.5 kids or are we four now?

    I really like your wagon, and knowing that your giving an old family member a life extending resto is cool. :2_thumbs_up_-_anima

    Keep us in the know. :)
     
  4. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    We'll be at 4 kids in about 2 weeks. Thanks for the compliments. Obviously I have a soft spot in my heart for this car and I have big plans for it as well. The ride should be fun so I'm hangin' on.

    One of my priorities is to get the engine running better. The carb is a recent rebuild Q-jet from Jet Performance but it came with jetting that didn't really work all that well. So I installed a K&N Air/Fuel meter on the driver side header reducer. Since I already had this meter installed on another car I needed a new weld-in bung for the O2 sensor. The cheapest way to get one is to buy an 18mm spark plug non-fouling tip and cut it in half. The female threads are used as the bung and the remaining male threads get a bolt welded to it so it can be used as a plug later once the sensor is removed.
    [​IMG]
    Note the angle and position of the sensor. It needs to be high so water doesn't condensate on it because it will destroy it otherwise.

    [​IMG]
    I just zip tied the display to the column and connected the power and ground wire along with the sensor wire. I've made 2 jetting changes so far and it's getting closer. I'm a bit rich now and the secondary rods are a bit rich as well. The meter sure makes things a lot easier.
     
  5. HandyAndy

    HandyAndy Well-Known Member

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    Nice setup. That's where I have my vacuum guage though... :scratchchin:
     
  6. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    So guess what?
    [​IMG]

    I'm working on the wiring. There were so many things that weren't working I felt I could only trace things thoroughly if I removed the dash. I was finding so many disconnected wires and such that it just made things easier. I could trace things because they would go into the blackness of the dash harness. First off the power windows weren't working, the tail gate release, the dash lights and cig. lighter.

    I originally thought the power window relay was bad but I'm not so sure now. I wired in a standard relay and it isn't working either. The signal wire doesn't seem to have power.

    As for the tail gate, those wires were disconnected (not sure who did that) so simply reconnecting them has that functioning again. Yippee! It seems a few of the power bus wires are also disconnected which is why the cig. lighter isn't working.

    I bought a complete service manual on CD from www.faxonautoliterature.com for only $30 and that is an awesome resource. The complete wiring diagrams are the only way I'm going to figure out the windows and it has helped immensely in tracking down the other connections.
     
  7. fannie

    fannie Well-Known Member

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    :49: OH MY!


    Good Luck :)
     
  8. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    I tracked down a bunch of grounding issues and that has helped things a lot but still no widows. So I spent a lot of time tracing every wire in the power window circuit. Power was going to everything except a little wire going to the relay. It probably took me an hour of looking at the wiring schematic to figure out the deal with that wire. After all this I find that the problem was...
    [​IMG]
    This little bity fuse that you can't even tell is blown. I checked every other fuse with a meter but this one wasn't labeled on the fuse block so I didn't think it was all that important. Well it was and replacing that now has the windows working like they should. This makes me very happy. It's nice to have some success. So the dash is back in and it looks more like a normal car again but I haven't put back all the HVAC ducting yet. One of the hoses ripped. Does anyone know of a good source for round hose? I think it's 2". Year One, OPG, Classic Industries, etc. doesn't carry it as far as I can see.
     
  9. KevinVarnes

    KevinVarnes Well-Known Member

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  10. Stormin' Norman

    Stormin' Norman Well-Known Member

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    That paper stuff with the coiled wire, right! Commonly used on Fords for warm intake air ducts to the air cleaner, up to about 1981 or 1982. You might find them in the Tune-up section of an auto parts store.
     
  11. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    That's the stuff. Thanks for the tip! I knew you Ford guys would come in handy someday.:)

    Kevin, I hadn't even thought about McMaster. That's also a good tip.
     
  12. Stormin' Norman

    Stormin' Norman Well-Known Member

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    :rofl2::rofl2::rofl2::rofl2:

    I haven't seen a Chevy/Ford water pistol fight for years!!!:lolup:
     
  13. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    Lol, I like poking people about their allegiance. You gotta have some fun with it. I'm a Chevy guy first and then other GM brands afterwords. Not so much any other types but I can still appreciate them all.
     
  14. Stormin' Norman

    Stormin' Norman Well-Known Member

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    Not to worry. :)

    I've owned and loved all 77 of my rides, even a Morris Mini Minor, and mostly GM and Mopar, but I love my Ford Fairmont/Zephyr/Mustang/Capri/Lincoln/Cougar Squire wagon, and she loves me back.:thumbs2:

    One of the best and logical cars I've ever owned. :bowdown:
     
  15. burners

    burners Well-Known Member

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    So I've done a little playing around with the ride height to see what kind of stance I want to put on it. I removed the springs on the LH side and cut wood blocks to set the height at a 2" drop and then with it all the way on the suspension stops.

    Here it is at stock ride height.
    stock_height_original.jpg
    2" drop
    slightdrop.jpg

    And Slammed
    slammed_original.jpg

    This car has so much ground clearance that even on the stops I have 3.5" at the lowest point.
     

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