The GTM Supercar Build Log

Archive for November, 2008

New engine plan?

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

This might be replacing the current LS6 that I have in the works – it would be a considerable step up in power.

  • LS2 aluminum block
  • ETP cylinder heads
  • custom cam set up for road race
  • billet rods
  • forged pistons
  • billet main caps
  • 2 stage dry sump system
  • 408 ci stroker
  • 550 RWHP 500 lb/ft

More drilling and riveting

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

Tonight I drilled out the frame for the rest of the interior aluminum panels I clecko’d in previously (200+ holes). So far only 3 drill bits have broken. I also riveted the upper radiator aluminum into place.

Axles and Aluminum

Saturday, November 29th, 2008

Tonight I started the assembly of the rear axles, but stopped short of completing them when I realized the older manual I am following shows axles that are totally different than the new redesigned axle shafts that came with the kit. I want to be sure I have the boots on the right ends before I fill them with gunk and seal them together, etc.

After that I clecko’d in all of the interior aluminum panels for drilling. Fun! If anyone out there considering this build thinks the aluminum panels look incredibly confusing in how they are arranged and fit together – don’t be worried. They really only fit together one way and if you label them it really is a piece of cake to put them back together.

Radiator needs Mounting tabs

Saturday, November 29th, 2008

Last night I had my friend Josh pick up my aftermarket radiator – he will be welding mounting tabs to the top of it so I can get it installed into the frame. Right now it is a bit short, and cannot be mounted to the frame like the stock Corvette radiator can. Should have the radiator back Monday.

Rear suspension installed, Fuel cover panels riveted

Friday, November 28th, 2008

After getting the steering setup the rear suspension was installed. This was a real bear, as the brackets on the frame are very tight. After much pounding, swearing, and prying, the arms went in and were bolted. Th e-brake cables were then connected to the main e-brake bracket.

The fuel tank aluminum panels were also riveted into place as well.

Front Steering Rods Cut, Spindle bearings installed

Friday, November 28th, 2008

As I mentioned previously, the steering rods needed to be cut so that the spindle bearings could be lined up properly with the front suspension knuckles. An inch was trimmed off each side (little more on the driver side) to get them to line up decently – I might have to trim off more later for a better alignment, as the rods do not have much adjustment right now. With the rods cut the tie rod sleeves were reinstalled and the spindle bearings with the bump steer washers were installed into the knuckles.

After that, I mounted the brake line brackets that go on the rear upper control arms of the front suspension. I did not do this yesterday because I simply could not find the brackets.

Lots of Rivets + Front Suspension

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

Pretty productive day today on the car. The black rivets came today so I was able to get things rolling. First, I have to complain about the rivets. They are GM specialty rivets I picked up from They look nice, but the paint chips off very easily – at least the paint on the first box of rivets did. I will probably go over the first rivets I used later with black touchup paint and make them look a little cleaner. The 2nd and 3rd boxes looked alot better, though.

Anyways, before riveting any panels to the frame you need to put down some silicone sealant – incredibly messy stuff, and it gets over everything. Don’t sweat it though, because once it dries you can just ‘rub’ it off easily. Today I set and riveted the front and rear splash guards, front and rear inner wheel wells, lower radiator tray, and finished up the footboxes. Everything is extremely solid. I used a 2″ spacing anywhere I am riveting to the frame, and 1.5″ when riveting to another aluminum panel.

Once the panels were set I mounted the front suspension – it is useful to have two people for this. My coilover mounts for the lower arms are on backorder, so mounting the coils will have to wait for now. The steering rods that connect to the front suspension are about 3/4″ too long so those will have to be trimmed. This is typical and mostly everyone has to do this.  The suspension install is pretty simple and straight forward – just make sure the lower arm cam bolt washers stay in their ‘grooves’ on the frame so you can torque the bolt down to its tighest fit. You can do the footboxes before doing the suspension too, even though the manual has you do the suspension first – you can still get a wrench in there to hold the bolt to torque it to spec.

Next up is the rear suspension, riveting the engine panels, and radiator install.

Radiator Aluminum

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

No sign of the black rivets yet so today I mocked up the radiator aluminum panels and drilled the frame out for them. Hopefully, the rivets will come tomorrow so I can get started on the fun stuff!

Lots of Drilling!

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

I picked up all the powdercoated panels today – they look awesome. Very nice glossy black finish. After I was done admiring how nice they looked I got to work. 250+ holes drilled into the frame later, the front wheel wells and splash guards, engine bay covers, rear wheel wells, and rear splash guards are all drilled and ready for riveting. I drilled out the remaining outer panels in the footboxes as well. Once I get the black rivets in the mail I will be able to get all these panels fastened to the frame and get to the fun stuff! I am impressed with the cheap black-oxide drill bits I have been using – 250+ holes into the frame I have only broken two.

Buck Completed and body mounted

Monday, November 24th, 2008

Hammered together the buck and got the body mounted on it. I padded the points where the body weighs the heaviest on the buck with some foam pieces. The casters make it very easy to roll around. Convenient.