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I posted this on the pro-touring.com board and got some good and helpful responses. I thought I would post it here and see what you guys thought.

cheers to all

bob spears

I have had the car now for a few weeks and I thought I would post a few of my initial impressions (good and bad) and solicite any feedback you guys might offer.

First the handling. It seems to handle just about the same. I am guessing there is no signficant weight difference between this built LT1 and the old 307. Throttle steer is now a concept for me. I have never driven a car with this much torque and it is fun breaking the rear end loose occasionally.I can feel the body twist a little on a hard launch. It's a good thing I have those subframe connectors.The new IROC quick ratio steering box from DS&E is a joy. Lane changes are just a flick of the wrist but it is not too twitchy for the street.

The sound. The American Thunder system is loud. There is no other word for it. It is the classic muscle car sound. It is not mellow at all. When I first drove it I got a lot of backfiring when coming off the highway. This has mellowed to just a slight popping or rumbling instead of frank backfires. The first few times I started it cold I noticed a loud sound (almost like a whistling or sucking sound) coming from under the hood on the drivers side. It goes away after about a minute and is not present on a warm start. It took me a while but it sounds like my cold air induction is gulping air. I guess on a cold start it needs a lot of air quickly.

Performance. Torque Torque Torque. It is just amazing to have this much power at my foot. It is a whole new experience for me. I cannot wait to get this car on the track. With the 255's on the rear I am traction limited. If I do not feather the throttle a little at launch the wheels just spin. When it grabs it goes. To me, first gear seems a little mushy. The converter is a Hughes 2500 rpm stall I believe. Tony H can correct me if I am wrong. It feels to me that on a hard launch I am waiting for the converter to grab. Second gear and up are very very strong and the car just keeps on pulling. I am getting a copy of the dyno printout and will post the torque/hp curve when I can. On the highway getting from 60 to 110 is very very quick. Cruising on the highway in OD is a pleasure. Smooth as silk and at 75 to 80 mph I am at around 2700 rpm. I need to check the calibration of the speedo.

There are still a few issues with the car but they are being addressed. The new DS&E dash looks great and is easier to see than the stock 69 dash. All the gauges worked perfectly for the first week but the air/fuel mixture gauge quit working a few days ago and the next day I started blowing the fuse that powers the speedo, tach, and voltmeter. The shop disconnected the a/f meter thinking it was causing the problem and initially the other gauges worked just fine but the fuse blew again when I launched hard. They are working on that problem right now. There are also a few ECM issues that are being reprogrammed. It currently idles at about 900 rpm. They are going to slow that down a little. It also has a tendency to rev on its own when it is in park. Sometimes it will roam or hunt between 900 and 1900 rpm. In addition when starting the engine it sounds like it is going to be hard to start. It starts every time but it does not just turn right over the first time.

The weather has been coolish here for a while. In the 60's or 70's mostly. When the car is run hard all day the temp never climbs above 185. The oil pressure is at 20 when it idles and goes to 60 when pushed hard. The mileage sucks. I have not measured it but I am burning thru the fuel. I guess it could be my lead foot.

These are just a few uneducated observations for those who have been following the progress of my car. Hopefully I will get it back from the shop in a few days with the new programming and the dash issue fixed. Thanks for listening to my ramblings and cheers to all.

bob spears
 

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I want your 'cool weather'!

What a great experience. Thanks for the feedback. It only whets my appetite for the driving season to resume here.
 

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Hard starting, erratic idle, and popping upon accelleration could be due to a number of things. Check that there are no vacuum leaks, that you have adequate fuel flow, and that your timing is set properly. Those are the easy possibilities.

As for the flex, you're running solid body mounts correct Bob? Maybe it's time for a little roll cage as well. :D
 

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Car sounds good. Got mine out yesterday. It's been a long winter. That "whistling - sucking" sound could possible be an automatic choke. Engine warms up, choke opens up, sound goes away. Just a thought. Our's get used a lot up here. Rhat
 

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Good write-up. Can only imagine what the American Thunder exhaust sounds like.

The whistling when cold is the opening, read controlled air leak, of the Idle Air Control (stepper motor). With no silencer or OEM air cleaner assembly installed, noise will be very loud.

If the engine idles at 900 rpm, I'd leave it. I'd probably check the EGR valve and its controlling circuits for problems if it is hunting rpm.

Dash fuse blows, so they disconnected the AFM? Hmmm, I would think these items would be on their own separate circuit. Might need to make a trip to an automotive electrical shop for their expertise.

Overall, sounds real good of a ride, if solid bushings installed, might as well install a cage and frame connectors.....
 
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