Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

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Matt
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Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

Thought I'd start a thread about what I'm up to at the moment.

I've always wanted to try circuit racing, preferably in a classic car. I turned 50 this year and came to the realisation that unless I do it now, I'll never get round to it. I nearly got my licence about 20 years ago but then other stuff got in the way.


So then naturally I started wondering what sort of Mopar I could build. I mean Mustangs are great of course, but everybody's got one.

I've had this coffee table book for some time
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So I looked at again. And figured out that this was probably the car for me.
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A couple of evenings on ebay and you come to realise that '70 Cuda projects are a bit thin on the ground, but I found this not far from New York, and the seller's description seemed straightforward.
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Thanks to Kingstown Shipping for their usual great service, and the car landed in Southampton in August.
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Now I knew the car was going to be rusty (it did come from Long Island after all), however on closer examination it seems the seller was, shall we say , a little over-generous with parts of the description.

<<"There are two replacement rear frame rails with the car as I noticed some thin spots at the very rear so I purchased them in case I had decided to do some repairs">>
should probably have read - 'Several parts of the frame rails are rusted away completely and there are huge holes in the rest"

<<"All of the chrome trim is in the car">>
"Maybe half the trim is present. Most of that is really bent. And it has *all*, mysteriously, been placed in a bonfire at some point" Although there are (count them) three sets of rear window reveal moldings.

etc etc you get the picture


Oh well, at least you can buy all the panels nowadays.

'

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Pete
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Pete »

Good for you, Matt!!!

I have seen the #48 Car in the flesh.

This will be a fantastic build thread.

Do you intend getting it FIA compliant?

If that is the case I think only certainly accredited installers can provide it.

We have an FIA compliant 1965 Mustang in the Workshop at present.


All the best as ever!
Pete Wiseman; Cambridge.

Mopar by the grace of God

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Matt
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

Hi Pete, (and big thanks for letting me look round the Trans-Am Mustang at Goodwood)

Yes I have the MSA blue book for general construction regs, and the cage is being installed to spec by someone who does this on a daily basis to all sorts of race cars.


Rough spec for the car is :

Body - Replica of the blue car, including paint, stickers, spoilers, and slightly flared arches. Fibreglass hood & bootlid. Polycarbonate windows. Full roll cage. 15x8 Minilites.

Suspension - Hotchkis TVS front & rear. Firm feel PS box with Hotchkis 'quick' longer pitman & idler. I'll take that PS weight penalty for now . Maybe I'll go manual later.

Drivetrain . 360/408 stroker with ally heads, Tremec 5-speed.

Brakes. Manual discs front & rear. Dual master with balance bar. It remains to be seen if the car will stop effectively with relatively small brakes, but it should be better than they were in 1970. Although that may not be saying much.

More updates soon !
Last edited by Matt on Tue Dec 04, 18 8:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Pete
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Pete »

I thought you would be restricted to a 340ci Capacity, stock valve train, etc; and Rear Drum set up.

What Class will you run in?
Pete Wiseman; Cambridge.

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Matt
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

There's several race series It looks like I can run in, including Bernie's V8s , and the CSCC 'open'

I could have gone original spec but wanted as much performance (within reason) as I could get. I'm unlikely to be out-cornering many people, so straightline speed will be useful.

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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Pete »

Cheng races / helps Organise "Bernies V'8s (look out for a name change shortly).

There are some seriously quick cars in that series.

Cheng's Cobra's 427ci Small Block Dynoed at 650 bhp at ICE, and it can't catch the Crossley's around Brands.

I think you will have your work cut out / be a chicane in that series - but as long as you are having fun!!!
Pete Wiseman; Cambridge.

Mopar by the grace of God

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Matt
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

Yes I'm expecting mostly to be trundling round near the rear !

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ScottyDave
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by ScottyDave »

Looking forward to seeing this build progress :thumbright:
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andyrob
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by andyrob »

Hi Matt, any car built to FIA spec will be worth alot more in years to come but will cost lots more to build and you could build a much faster car, as you said cssc rules would be good starting point, a proper roll cage will not only be safer but will help the handling, this is one choice that will difficult to alter at a later date, you really need a cage that it connected to the suspension pick points, before I was introduced to my falcon's I looking to build a 69-70 boss 302 clone
My advice would be to start with a 'cooking' engine and get used to car & spend time time with handling before you build some power into it & let somebody else drive it as a race learner in a new home built car is not an ideal situation, Ill look forward to seeing it, and feel free to ask me any questions on circuit racing/car set up.car build as have put alot of effort into circuit racing over the years & im sure you will have all the same questions as I did
cheers andy
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Pete
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Pete »

Matt wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 18 8:33 pm
Yes I'm expecting mostly to be trundling round near the rear !
I know a guy with a Galaxie that got lapped 4 times in a race....
Pete Wiseman; Cambridge.

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Pete
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Pete »

I think technically in some FIA Classes the Cage is "only" here for Safety, and should not be installed so that it acts as a Chassis stiffener.

The FIA 1965 Mustang we support at Goodwood, etc does not even have Chassis connectors.

As ever, check the Class Regs...
Pete Wiseman; Cambridge.

Mopar by the grace of God

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autofetish
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by autofetish »

Looking forward to this !!!!
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Matt
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

Right apologies already for my lack of essential racing knowledge ! To clarify, the car will not be FIA historically compliant/ accurate. I figured I'd build it initially to have fun and experiment with rather than compete in those sorts of circles.

Andy thanks for the offer of advice,I'll be in touch. I'm aware that I have little experience , and a yet-to-be determined amount of ability.

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Matt
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by Matt »

I applied to DVLA to register the car soon after it was imported, and received notice that they wanted to inspect it first - which was a little concerning since it's basically a rusted shell with a few parts either attached, loosely resting in place, or not present at all !

Anyway the guy from their agency came a few weeks ago, gave it the once over, asked me a few questions about originality, and left to make his report.

I was relieved (and a little surprised) to receive a letter saying that they were satisfied with what they saw. So the car will now have a V5 (and be able to wear TUJ 552H if it ever becomes road legal )
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MattH
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Re: Matt's 1970 'Trans-Am' Cuda

Post by MattH »

I shall watch this with great interest.
I did my bit of circuit racing when I was 18 / 19 in a Triumph Herald then a GT6. Great fun but a money pit even back in 89.
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