Frame and Wheelbase

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Frame and Wheelbase

Post by Sinister on Wed Jan 25, 2017 2:30 pm

I've seen a ton of different specs listed for the wheelbase.
I know the coupes should be 112,but Ive seen different specs.
Sedans should be 116 along with El Camino.
I have a 74 El camino, and 73 Gran Prix.
Currently looking at buying a 1974 malibu and a 73 grand Am.
Aside from the El Camino,all these A Bodies have the frame interchangeable between them?
If I remove all the bodies for restoration they can be installed onto any of the frames?
I want to take a plain Jane 74 Malibu,with a perfect body,and drop it onto a Grand Am suspension.
The grand am body is rough,but the interior is decent,Can I graft the roof onto the Gp?
Thanks.
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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by clanceman427 on Wed Jan 25, 2017 3:39 pm

For frames one key difference is fuel line routing. Passenger side for Chevrolet, drivers side for Pontiac.
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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by Sinister on Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:15 pm

The malibu is a 250 6,dont even know if it has disc brakes,looks like a real granny car.
The Grand Am has the beefier suspension with posi and large stabilizer bars,better springs,shocks etc.
I guess Ill need to do some more research.
The local library just gave me 7 boxes of car craft popular hot rodding etc from the 80's and later...dont see many photos of 73-77 A Bodies...
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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by pila on Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:54 pm

The only place I've seen dimensions of the frames was in a service manual. The Factory manual for my Elco and Sprint also had the Monte dimensions in it, for example.

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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by Tquillen on Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:50 am

clanceman427 wrote:For frames one key difference is fuel line routing.  Passenger side for Chevrolet, drivers side for Pontiac.  

If I'm not mistaken, my '74 GP has the fuel lines on the passenger side. They change from steel to rubber and cross over to the driver side in the engine compartment, between the front crossmember and harmonic damper and are bolted to the front of the oil pan with tabs.

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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by Joe73 on Sun Apr 16, 2017 11:01 am

Two things.  Disc brakes came standard starting in 1973.  I've never seen a 73+ "A" body WITHOUT disc brakes up front. I have seen them WITHOUT power brakes, though. Although I did see a 73 nova with drums up front years ago.  
You could put the malibu body on the grand am frame but why bother since they are the same.  All upgrades interchange between either.  So if your replacing stock stuff for something better, it will fit in either frame.  

If you like, take the sway bars out of the grand am and put them into the malibu.  Its all a super easy bolt in.  But if your going through that, why not just upgrade to better stuff from the aftermarket.

Just saying, your not gaining anything by putting your malibu body on the grand am frame.  

Frame break down goes like this.

All 2 door "A" bodies use the 112" wheelbase frame.
All 4 door "A" bodies AND El Camino/Sprint use the 116" frame.
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Re: Frame and Wheelbase

Post by clanceman427 on Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:49 am

Tquillen wrote:
clanceman427 wrote:For frames one key difference is fuel line routing.  Passenger side for Chevrolet, drivers side for Pontiac.  

If I'm not mistaken, my '74 GP has the fuel lines on the passenger side. They change from steel to rubber and cross over to the driver side in the engine compartment, between the front crossmember and harmonic damper and are bolted to the front of the oil pan with tabs.

ah my bad. I knew that older Buicks had the fuel on the drivers side (I had a 64 Buick Special) and thought that the pontiacs had it too.
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