Mike's 1972 Monte Carlo Restoration


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2015 now marks the beginning of the 7th year of the restoration process of my 1972 Monte Carlo.
I have made some real progess in late 2013 and 2014 and now I can start working on the interior.
BEWARE!!! I will not mention the nationally know parts supplier but I ordered the most comprehensive interior kit that listed a several parts. Granted this catalog was for a Chevelle, El Camino and Monte Carlo but when that part that is listed says it is for a '69 - 72 coupe you would assume it would be included. During my call I was told told this was only included in the Chevelle kit and I got what I paid for, however, I did not get what I expected, no matter what the cost.
Even though I did rant a little above the parts I got were of good quality and some of the parts are on back order, (like my carpet), there are some items I can work on, assemble to the interior and show some progress.
Below are pictures of the door panels which had to be mostly assembled using piece and parts from the old panel, like the upper inner structure, lock know bezels, and the window fuzzies. I did get new handles, door opener and window cranks, arm rest pads and bases but the rest had to assembled from the old panel.
All in all it turned out pretty good but took me two weekends to complete.
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As mentioned I finished and installed the drivers side panel and started to assemble the passenger side panel. Maybe in a weekend or two I can show a little more progress.
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If I was a little smarter or less cheap I should have bought the pre-assembled door and back panels. Got the passenger side finished and installed this weekend and went on to assemble and install the drivers side rear seat panel.
The unassembled panel, (which I of course bought), required to remove components from the old panels and assemble, glue and cut the new panel to fit. The adhesive is pretty good, (stuck to my hands real well), and gives a solid body between the components. If I were to do it again I think I will buy the pre-assembled panels.
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Well the headliner is in the car. This was a real job!! I need 3 sets of hands all in the same place at the same time, (I didn't have 3 sets of hands, only 1 set). It has been really cold this year for February and I am hoping the wrinkles will work out when it warms up. For now it is ok, not great, not too bad. I will wait and see what some heat will do.
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I had planned work on the headliner again this weekend but ended up putting the carpet down instead. I have to say the carpeting is very well made and tough. It was a bear to cut and fit. The only complaint is that there was not a sewn in grommet for the dimmer switch but that is OK.
I was wrong, again, there was a grommet for the dimmer switch, it wasn't sewn in the carpet but slips through. My apologizes.

IT IS DONE

Not really and that will teach you not to believe everything you read, especially on the internet.
It is July 2015 and I have made some significant progress. I hope you can tell buy the new pictures.
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It is running, (after about a 18 month rest) and driving again. Got the trans leak fixed and it turned out to be only one of the cooling lines let the fluid deposit itself on my garage floor.
On Sunday, June 28, it was 40 years and 1 month since my wife and I had our first date in this car. So, before I had it registered or insured we took a short maiden voyage around the block close to home.
Since last weekend the car has been registered and insured, (first time since 2006), and first time in my name again since 1976!!
If you read the story from the beginning, or forgot, or got bored, or just didn't give a RAT'S ASS, I wanted to keep the car original as I had it back in the day. I tried, I really, really tried but instead of the single 2" exhaust I had to, (I really had to), go with 2.5" dual exhaust. Not original but it sounds really mean for a stock 350.
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Still quite a bit to do to the interior but it is in, comfortable looks decent so far. (with the exception of the headliner. I will do something about that in the future).
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Doing a little bit at a time. A buddy of mine had some 15x7 Chevy rally wheels. They had been sitting around for some time and needed blasted, primed and painted. Well that is done and today I got a new set of tires mounted and balanced. Still need to find some trim rings and center caps to finish up the wheels but it still looks better than those old rusty Cragers and painted, (several colors),tires.
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Today is December 26, 2015. This date is only significant to me, perhaps, but it was 9 years ago today that I picked up the Monte Carlo that my wife got for me for Christmas. That day in 2006, was much like today, rainy but not so cold. It has really been a long time coming, 9 years of restoration and slowly getting back running and driving. I have had the car running and driving since mid summer but now it is time to get all the detail work done. I mentioned above that a buddy of mine had a set of 7" rallys, well he came through with the trim rings and derby caps. I little buffing with stainless steal polish and chrome polish, masking and painting they look pretty good.
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Stating with today and going forward I will start a new page with what I hope to be all the final details and touches. Check back often. (I hope).

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