Caverman's VR 2SS Build
I've had the car for almost 3 years (picked up February 2010) now and I'm just now getting around to starting up my build thread. So here goes.....
-MGW shifter w/Race knob
-Halltech CAI w/ADM scoop (custom made washer bottle)
-KOOKS 1 3/4" ceramic coated headers
-High Flow cats
-Magnaflow 3" cat-back (#16483)
-ADM tuned (411 rwhp / 413 rwtq)
-LPE 3.91 gears
-VMax ported Throttle Body
-Seperate clutch resivoir
-RX catch can
-Heater hose relocation
-Raptor shift light
-Hurst line lock
-18" Corvette wheels w/Mickey Thompson drag radials
-20x9 OEM wheels with BFG 275 all around
-Pedders cradle bushing inserts (removed)
-Whiteline differential bushings
-Whiteline radius rod bushings
-Spohn Del-Sphere trailing arms
-Pfadt trailing arm bushings
-BMR toe rods
-Pedders FE4 ZL1 spec sway bars
-Pedders HD front end links
-OEM FE4 control arms and drop links
-Pedders steering bush
-Stainless steel brake lines
-Motul 600 - DOT 4 brake fluid
-BC racing coilovers
-Pedders rear eccentric bolts
-Pedders Aggressive Street spec alignment
-ADM solid cradle bushings
-ADM carbon upper control arm bushings
-Custom vinyl extended stripes
-Vinyl gill inserts
-Painted engine cover
-Painted roof ditch molding
-SS grill and side emblems
-Powder coated brake calipers
-Morimoto projectors retrofitted
-AAC 5202 fog light bulbs
-Custom wiring harness (removed DRL and added automatic fog lights)
-JL amp with Sub-Thump harness
-Polk Audio front speakers
-SRP pedal covers
*SOLD 1/15/2015* :cry::suicide:
Fortunately it went to a great guy that will appreciate and take care of the car like I did. I hated to see it go but I had to get rid of one of my toys and the '69 is never going anywhere.
I ordered my car in the August 2009 time frame. There was a 6 - 8 month waiting period for dealers to get their allocation and for the car to actually get built at that time. I think I was about 15 on the dealers wait list when I put down my $500 deposit.
I ordered a 2SS with polished wheels. That's it, no RS package for me. That's mostly because I wanted to make mine look very similar to a 1st Gen Camaro and in my opinion the Halogen headlights looked better than the blacked out housing of the RS. 1st Gen Camaros have been big in my family. I've had my convertible since I was 15. I got it about 4 months before turning 16 back in 1985. Now between my dad, my brother, and I our family currently has 7 of them.
Here are some pictures of the wife and I when we picked up the car in February of 2009 as well as some pictures of it in the garage on the first day it got home.
Since I had so much time on the forums prior to actually getting the car I already knew the car was going to be too quite. After doing some research and weighing my options for exhaust I decided I would do a muffler delete. I knew this was going to be temporary because I wanted to get headers eventually.
So, I talked with Jordan over at JDP Motorsports and ordered up a Magnaflow resonated X-pipe and some Magnaflow tips. I brought the parts with me when I picked up my car. After signing all the papers, taking the wife for a quick drive and lunch, I drove straight to the muffler shop. I think the car had 35 miles on it when I did my first mod.
Here is a more in depth thread of what I did and what to do and not to do.
I knew I wanted the 1st Gen Z/28 style stripes on my car but I wasn’t sure if I wanted them in white or in black. I also knew that the OEM ones were too small and narrow for me.
So, I found an excellent vinyl guy and had a set of custom stripes made and installed along with a set of gill inserts for about the same price as the OEM ones. To me they came out perfect. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.
Next up was a shifter. I knew from have a Mustang Cobra about 10 years prior that a good shifter really mad a difference. I couldn’t stand the big baseball feeling shifter knob that came from the factory. Even the wife agreed the shifter had to go. There weren’t a whole lot of options at the time. Hurst had just come out and so did MGW. I tried the Hurst first again because it was more like what a 1st Gen would have.
Well….I liked the feel of the round ball in my hand but I felt the shifter was a little too high IMO. It also shifted real clunky to me when you were just driving around town. Speed shift and it worked great but daily driving it wasn’t for me. Not only that but being early on in the release of the Hurst mine didn’t come with the dampening kit and the shifter just felt really loose an sloppy. Since then Hurst has addressed that issue.
So, about 2 weeks with the Hurst and out it came and in with the MGW with the Race knob. It was perfect for me. Great feel, great smooth shifts, spring loaded, and low to the console. The install was definitely a lot more involved but I only had to do it once.
More detailed thread.
It didn’t take long before I wanted to lower the car. I didn’t know a whole lot about coilovers at the time but I wouldn’t have been able to afford them then anyway. I started off with a set of Hotchkis 1” lowering springs.
One of the first performance mods I did was a Halltech CAI. I eventually added an ADM scoop along with a custom made windshield washer fluid holder.
Here is the thread on the washer bottle.
The first time I took my car to the drag strip I realized real quick that I was going to have to do something about the horrible wheel hop. I started my research and saw Spohn’s Del-Sphere trailing arms. They were about double what the BMR ones were but I decide to go ahead with Spohn’s because I really like the way the Del-Sphere joint works.
Some other minor upgrages:
Heater hose relocation
Clutch fluid reservoir
VMax Ported Throttle Body
HID Projector Retrofit
I also wanted HID headlights but just not the Halos. I originally started off with HID bulbs that worked okay but exactly what I wanted. I eventually learned about doing a HID projector retrofit. This was a a great mod. I really love my HID headlights vs my stock Halogen lights. I also had a custom harness made that kills the DRL as well as automatically turns on my fog lights whenever the headlights come on.
Here is the thread on the HID retrofit.
Less than a year into owning the car I decided to add headers. I ended up getting a used set of 1 ¾” KOOKS from ADM Performance. Someone else started with 1 ¾” and then upgraded to 2”. His loss was my gain. I got smoking deal from Andy for the headers, new HF cats, 3” Magnaflow cat-back, installation, and a tune. I had the headers sent off for ceramic coating prior to install. That was worth every penny to make them look brand new.
My initial dyno pull put 373 rwhp. After headers and a tune I got 411 rwhp. That’s only a few less HP than what most 1 7/8” setups typically put down on his dyno. Keep in mind for the pre-dyno I had an intake and a rear-cat delete which is why my numbers were a littler higher than normal.
I ended up selling my muffler delete exhaust to a member with a 2LT. I ended get pretty much all the money I spent on it but I also installed it for him.
Another upgrade I did was to the stereo. I switched out my stock amp with a JL400 with the help of a Sub-Thump harness. I last about a year or so on the stock speakers before I ended up switching out the front speaks (both mid and tweeters) with a pair of 6.5” Kickers.
Powder coated my calipers. Sent them off to Mike@thepowdercoater.com and he did a fantastic job. They really pop now. I’ve have several people ask when I upgraded to Brembos (usually non Camaro owners) and I tell about how the car came with Brembos, I just added the color.
I went ahead and upgraded to a set of stainless steel brake lines while I was at it. You have to bleed the brakes anyway. Might as well do this upgrade while we’re at it, especially since I got mine on sale through a Black Friday promotion for about $100 to my door.
Hotchkis Chassis Brace
After some researching is definitely sounded like I needed to firm up the cradle. Initially I didn’t want to deal with dropping my cradle so I went down the route of using the Hotchkis chassis brace. It’s a pretty straight forward install. However, I never really felt anything with it. The car didn’t feel any different in the butt dyno nor did my times really increase at the drag strip. Still it is a good concept so I stuck with it for a little while.
Eventually I decided to try some cradle bushing inserts. I didn’t want the full bushing for now because of money, install difficulty, and as of now I don’t plan to go much more HP wise with my car. I’m sitting at the 415 rwhp range so inserts should be fine for me.
Cradle Bushing Inserts
I got a deal on a set of Energy Suspension cradle bushing inserts. I think they were $100 to my door. They are the same design as BMR’s and the rumor is Energy makes them for BMR. So, figured I would give them a try. Well, that was a learning experience. The way the inserts are designed the front ones are hard as heck to get in properly. Maybe if you completely dropped the whole cradle it would be easier but I was trying to avoid that.
After Justice Pete from Pedders saw my install thread he worked me up a deal by trading in what I spent on the Energy bushings in return for a set of Pedders. So basically I didn’t really lose any money. Win for me! I paid a little more and went ahead and upgraded to the Pedders street kit (cradle inserts + radius rod inserts).
Here is my thread on the inserts:
Coilovers + bushings
I finally decided to step up to coilovers and ended up choosing BC coilovers because they fit my budget the best and I actually liked the idea of having access to the settings in the trunk. Since I had have installed coilovers before I decided to pay to have them done and setup properly.
The coilovers work great. Really make the ride smoother because of the settings yet I’m able to making changes to them based on either being at the drag strip or Auto-X or just daily driving.
While I was there I ended up have Mike go ahead and install some differential bushings (again, he had done them before and had a removal tool) and some Radius Rod full bushings (he had a press and I don’t). I ended up using Whiteline for those bushings since that’s what he carried and rumor is that Whiteline makes the bushings for Pedders. So, effectively these were supposed to be the same as Pedders bushings. Is there a difference between the two brands…..maybe , maybe not. I didn’t have the two to compare.
All said and done, love the coilovers, glad I got the differential bushings, but should’ve probably just kept my Pedders radius rod bushing inserts.
Another cosmetic interior change I made was a set of SRP pedals.
I had a set of LPE 3.91 gears installed through ADM Performance. Love these gears. I don’t know that I’m a bunch faster at the drag strip but I can sure feel them in the butt dyno. They also make 6th gear way more useful around town. My only negative for this upgrade is that I was a couple months too early when I pulled the trigger. Not long after paying the high price for the LPE gears, GM released the same gear for the 1LE at about ¼ the cost. I wish I would’ve had that extra money for a set of drag radials. Oh well….I still love my gears.
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