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Old Oct 26th, 13, 12:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 12
81 Camaro

I've got an 81' Camaro I am fixing up. I've got a couple of questions about how much I'm gonna be spending. It's got a little bit of rust so I will have to get it sanded and repainted, about how much would it be to get a high quality paint job? I would like it painted black with two red stripes.
Another question, it runs well and there seems to be a faint white smoke coming out of the heating vents, any ideas of what it could be?
I also have a 79' Camaro as a parts car and I would like to take out the V8 of the 79' and replace the V6 in the 81'...is that possible? And what kind of work/if any would i need to do in order for it to work?
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Old Oct 26th, 13, 12:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 81 Camaro

Not a body man and price will vary depending on your location and how much body work it needs. White smoke out the vents- bad heater core. Which V6 you have will determine how much work the swap will be. I'm not real up on the particular options in 1981 but if it's a 231 Buick engine the transmission will need to be swapped as well. 229 Chevy engine, it won't. Buick engine the power steering pump is different, Chevy engine it's the same. Look at the V6 in the 81. Is the distributor in the front or the back ? Buick is in front, Chevy in back. Motor mounts including the the ones on the frame will either need to be swapped or at least moved to the same location as the V8 donor car. Again, not familiar with the exact specifics of a 1981. In every case the exhaust will be different. Also the 81 has computer controlled carb & distributor. The 79 does not. This won't make alot of difference, just use all the 79 V8 stuff and don't plug in the ECM junk. Transmission may have a lockup converter, not sure how this will be affected by the swap. If the 79 trans is good I'd use that one. If you've never done this sort of thing before you'll have LOTS of questions. We have LOTS of guys here who can answer them. Have fun and post pics.
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Old Oct 26th, 13, 01:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Colorado
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Re: 81 Camaro

This is my first "project car" I also don't have very much knowledge of cars but I know people who will help me out as long as I've got answers and I'm looking to learn.
As far as the bad heating core what kind of work would be needed in fixing that? Or is it even something that needs to be fixed? I don't plan on using any heating or a/c.
I'll check the engines and post pictures when I can.
Thanks for the help
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Old Oct 26th, 13, 01:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 81 Camaro

Not planning on having heat ? Or defrost ? In Colorado ? It means you need a new heater core and they're not too bad to change unless you have A/C. It does involve removing the entire heater box from under the dash and it's not alot of fun feeding the tubes back through the holes in the firewall when putting it back together. Bypassing it is easy if you only plan to drive the car on nice days in the Summer. Keep in mind also that some states require a working heater/defroster as part of their state inspection rules. Might want to look into that unless you're building a drag car. What are your intentions anyway ? Also make note that I said a "new" heater core. Not the old one from the 79 donor car since it may be on the way out as well and it's too much work to take the chance. Man you need to move to Tennessee... No state inspections at all. You don't even need doors here.. I took this at the local convenience store the other day.
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Old Oct 26th, 13, 01:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Colorado
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Re: 81 Camaro

Would you recommend getting a new one if I will only be driving the car on sunny warm days? I don't have a/c either. And if I was to bypass it is the smoke dangerous for me? And would it have an effect on the car?
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Old Oct 26th, 13, 01:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 12
Re: 81 Camaro

I'll look up what I need for the car to be street legal. But I would just like to have this car to occasionally cruise around the streets. I was planning on getting it in to drags but I don't have the money for that yet. And I will never drive it in bad conditions like rain or snow.
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Old Nov 27th, 13, 12:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: 81 Camaro

Hi Garrett. Welcome. Body work and paint can run between $2k and $20k. It depends on how perfect you want it. Shop around. Do your homework. Go to car shows and ask people where they got their work done.
Faint white smoke coming from the heating vents is probably a small hole in your heater core. Fix it or replace it. It is not a terribly difficult job, though it may require the partial removal of the p/s front fender. You need heat and defrost. Dont make the mistake of thinking you dont.
Yes, the V8 from the 79 will bolt right into the 81. This is really a very straight-forward swap. Especially if you have the cars side by side. Keep all the parts from the 79. Like motor mounts, frame mounts, accessory mounts, radiator, and wiring. You will very likely need to use them to complete the swap. You will need basic hand tools, a dry place to work, and an engine crane. Do some research on this site and NastyZ28 to help you get a game plan for this. A good mechanic could do this project in less then a day.
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