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Old 03-11-2011, 10:45 PM   #1
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Default 1976 Vega Wagon

Hey there everyone I thought I would share my project with you. I have a 1976 vega wagon. Here it is where I bought it.
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Upon further inspection all of the suspension mounting points were rusted so I took the frame out of a 1987 2 door 2 wheel drive s10 blazer. I had it around and it was all ready set up for a sbc so I stretched the wheel base on the car 4" to fit the frame. I wanted to use the drive shaft and fuel and brake lines and the fuel tank from the blazer.
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I set the body back on so I could see how things were going to look.
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I like it so far but the seats were going to be too high in the car so I cut the center frame rails out and made some new ones out of some 2"x3" tubing.
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I got them put in the frame. I still need to box in the rear where the rails tie together but looks pretty good so far.
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Here is where I tied the front together.
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I am building an iron block ls1 with ported and polished 5.3 heads. I am hoping for around 350-400 rwhp at least. Right now it has a 10 bolt with 3.73 gears. I will run it until I break it and then I will put in the 8.8 I have with the same gears. I still have a long way to go and progress is slow but I will keep it updated as I get to it. Thank you
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 03-11-2011, 10:48 PM   #2
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Looks good, that'll be a very unusual car when you're done.
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Old 03-12-2011, 12:03 AM   #3
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Cool...I love the Vega wagons..they've actually become pretty rare.
When I was 16 I bought my first car, a 69 SS Nova from a local farmer that drag raced an early 70's Vega. It was a panel wagon, no rear side window. This car was tubbed, full tube chassis and a tunnel rammed small block. It was called the "James Gang" with western theme paint and for 1976 was one bad azzed car.
Another local kid had a Vega wagon that he put a 396 BB in, that poor car couldn't handle that big block chevy. He twisted the frame so bad that the doors wouldn't open...

Good luck with the build, i'll be following it with interest...

p.s. is that frame gonna be able to handle an ls motor???
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Old 03-12-2011, 10:10 AM   #4
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Car on a truck chassis - thats been sliced and diced... hell yeah!
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Old 03-12-2011, 03:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoatof69 View Post

p.s. is that frame gonna be able to handle an ls motor???
The frame should be fine, but I am not at all a chassis engineer. It is built from .250" wall tubing and is still going to get a couple more cross members, trans. and one under back seat. I also am building a 1" square tube frame through the rockers, fire wall and over the wheel tubes and to the back to tie the body and the frame together. If all else fails I will put in a cage, but am trying to keep from that right now. I still want to keep my back seat for the kids to ride.
If you have any suggestions please let me know. As I said I am no expert.
Thank you
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 03-12-2011, 05:07 PM   #6
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I got the back side of the frame tied in today. Have to get ready to go to work now so the engine/trans. mock up will have to wait for another day.
Sure is nice to be able to work on this thing again. It's felt like a really long winter.
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:28 PM   #7
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Not much to report right now. Got a little paint on the frame and set the mock up engine and trans in. Not in the final resting place but wanted to see how close it would be. Engine need still needs to come down a couple of inches and need to build a transmission mount but pretty close.
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD

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Old 03-15-2011, 06:58 AM   #8
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My first V8 swap was a 74 Vega estate wagon, with the fake wood paneling, with a 400 sbc and th400 from a monte carlo. I drove that car for years.

I still like the lines of the wagon, you have a pretty cool project going.
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Old 07-17-2011, 12:55 PM   #9
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I finally got the body and frame mounted back together. Loaded it up and took it to a friends shop to make sure it was level and square. It is kind of hard to do with the dirt floor I have to work on. I also changed the engine idea a little.
I bought an aluminum 5.3 for $300 so i am going to work on it a little and run it.
Here are a couple of pictures of the care still on trailer. I still need to lower the front a little but am going to wait until I put the aluminum motor in to do that.
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 07-17-2011, 01:06 PM   #10
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I'm a die hard closet Vega/Monza fan! The car is looking real good and you are doing some nice work! Keep it up!
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Old 07-19-2011, 12:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nutiger View Post
I'm a die hard closet Vega/Monza fan! The car is looking real good and you are doing some nice work! Keep it up!
Thank you I appreciate the complement.
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 08-15-2011, 06:31 PM   #12
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Thought I would give a little update on the car. Have actually gotten a fair amount done in the last couple of weeks. I built a 1" tube frame under the floor to help tie everything together. Also made a new transmission cross member, and got some floor pans and a fire wall in it. I also have the seat mounts done front and rear. This thing is finally starting to look like a car again. Here are some pictures let me know what you think.

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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 08-15-2011, 07:26 PM   #13
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That's looking pretty good. Good luck with your Kammback.

bill
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Old 08-18-2011, 12:21 AM   #14
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I really like the build and that you are fabricating everything. I've never seen one of these and I like the louvers(sp) on the 1/4 panel. I wonder if vw type whatever was trying to copy the chevy.
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Old 08-18-2011, 05:37 AM   #15
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That's awesome
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Old 08-30-2011, 09:21 PM   #16
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Quote:
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That's awesome
Thank you
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 08-30-2011, 09:24 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by futureuser View Post
I really like the build and that you are fabricating everything. I've never seen one of these and I like the louvers(sp) on the 1/4 panel. I wonder if vw type whatever was trying to copy the chevy.
Monza355 That's looking pretty good. Good luck with your Kammback.

bill

Thank you all
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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Old 08-31-2011, 07:24 AM   #18
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Starting to look real good, I'm guessing you've already got a ton of hours in this build. Keep up the good work, its gonna be a bad *** ride in the end.
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:08 PM   #19
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Great fabwork. Very cool car!
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Starting to look real good, I'm guessing you've already got a ton of hours in this build. Keep up the good work, its gonna be a bad *** ride in the end.
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Great fabwork. Very cool car!
Yes I have a bunch of hours in this already and a bunch to go. Thank you all for the compliments and the encouragement.
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1976 vega wagon, modified s-10 blazer frame, TT Aluminum 5.3, 2.92 gears, small tire street car

1996 Chevy Tahoe 2 door z71,cowl hood and dual Borla exhaust. My DD
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