Episode 99. Pontiac Trans Am. GOX 144V. (Part 9).

I'm at that point with this, it's time to let someone else have a turn. Over the last few weeks I have changed how I feel about it, but I still don't love it, and I doubt I'll ever feel how I felt about my previous red one. I do however think it looks so much cooler than it did before, although I felt it could still do with a little tweaking, especially in the interior, but from the outside, for me its a hundred times better to look at.


I decided that as the annual rust and crap festival known as Beaulieu autojumble was coming up I figured that I would give it a good wash, and tinker a bit with the interior to make it as good as it could be, then I would stick an advert up on the notice board at the autojumble on Saturday, then standback as the phone went wild with prospective buyers.


A quick advert was knocked up, and I recycled some old pins from other peoples adverts from last year, and pinned it up. My phone was on, and I made sure that I could hear it by turning it up loud and having the most obnoxious ring tone my phone had to offer. I've placed adverts on these notice boards before, but I have never had any luck selling from them. Maybe I'm asking too much, maybe my cars are just not what the people at Beaulieu autojumble want, or maybe nobody even bothers looking at my adverts. I don't know, but I figured if I didn't try, I definately wouldn't get a sale. Besides, it's free right? So what do I have to lose? I decided to actually drive the Trans Am to Beaulieu, just incase anyone wanted to see it while I was there, then we could just walk out to the car park for a viewing. I was going to take the Daewoo, as I was hunting down Vauxhall Carlton wings, and Ford Scorpio bumper, and there was no way I was going to get either of these in the boot of the Trans Am. But as one of my Brothers was taking his Renault Scenic (... ugh!) I figured he would get my panels home for me. I don't know why I was worried, I didn't find wings or bumpers for my two projects! Anyway, notice up, I headed off to join the madness, and sift through mountains of rust and crap for bargains that I didn't even know I needed!

In the week leading up to the autojumble I put in all the pieces of interior trim that came with the car when I bought it back in 2015. I'd always planned to fit it, but never seemed to get around to doing so. The first thing I did was to fit the rear side panels, and the trim that goes around the rear windscreen. The side panels were pretty painless to fit, but that trim around the rear screen was a pain in the buttocks! I must have faffed with that for over an hour. There was two problems, first, I didn't have the correct screws to fit it, so I had to dig around in my screwbox to find something that might fit the bill. The second problem is one that I find is more and more common when I am working on cars, basically I could do with another synovial joint fitted on my forearm between my wrist and my elbow! This would actually be very helpful indeed, but probably quite an expensive modification to have done! Eventually through the struggle the rear window trim was fitted, and I turned my attention to the courtesy light. There is no headlining in the Trans Am, and also no courtesy light, the wires for it however are there. I managed to pick up a courtesy light from a Rover 25, and although not an exact match, even the blind could tell the difference, never the less it was better than nothing, so in it went.


Like the rear side panels the doors also had no door cards fitted, so these were found, and as they look to have been fitted by screwing them in around the edges, I employed the same method to fit them to my doors. Of course they had no trim around the door handle, and no arm rests either. I tried the trim for the door handle from the Carlton, but they were too small, so I had to leave it without them. I did manage to fit a pair of arm rests from a Chrysler Alpine to the doors however, and although they were dark blue in colour I thought it looked a lot better than leaving it without, especially as the door cards had holes for the armrest mounting points. Although obviously they were slightly in the wrong place!


The whole time I have had this car, the trim that goes around the shifter never fitted properly, and never looked right. I tried to get it to fit for a fair while, and in the end I figured that it was just not the right one for the car! I then eventually realised that was not the problem. The problem was that whoever had fitted it had fitted it back to front, then butchered everything to try and make it look right, and fit. Which it never did. Half an hour, some tec-screws, and two small speaker grilles to hide the hideous holes that the previous owner had hacked into it later, it was re-mounted, and possibly not looking great, but definately looking better!


Under the dash hung a hideous rats nest of wiring, complete with both scotchblok connectors, and the more traditional 'just twist it together and put some insulation tape around it' type connector. Not to mention wires that just went to nowhere, and were bare at the ends. I traced these back and cut out the ones I didn't need, and re-connected the other offending wires in a better fashion. I then tied everything up and out of the way just so that it was neatened up, and wasn't just hanging below the dashboard blowing in the wind. Then a bit of a clean and polish, and I was ready to sell... Probably.

Anyhoo, as I was wandering around Beaulieu autojumble I must admit I had two thoughts in my mind, firstly, after all the effort I had put into it lately did I really want to sell it? Secondly, would anyone be interested in buying it anyway? I promised myself that I wouldn't check back on the notice board until the very end of the second day of the autojumble. I thought that as I could pass the notice board on my way out after it had all ended, I'd look then. Sunday came, and just as Mrs Clint, our two little monsters, and I were about to leave I told them that I just needed to see if anyone had taken any of the tearaways off my advert. Mrs Clint, was tired from the day of marching about, and told me to forget it, as it didn't matter, if they were going to call, then they would call. I told her I gots to know, and headed off against the flow of the exiting crowed to check on the notice board...


  Well, with nine of the ten tearaways gone I'm hoping thats a positive sign. Most times when I've done this I only lose two or three tearaways, so this is a definate improvement! Maybe I've finally priced something right... Maybe I've priced it too cheap!


Heading home at double-nickel my main thought was that I must've priced it too cheaply, however, it's odd that so many tearaways have gone, and yet several days later my phone has still not yet rung! Will it ring? As the days have passed I'm thinking it gets less and less likely. My feeling is that whoever has pulled off the tearaways have now had time to think about it, and the practicalities of owning such a car, and have finally been told NO by she who must be obeyed! The funny thing is that over the years I've had lots of people telling me how hard it must be to own an American car here in the UK. This, they tell me is due to the size, the steering wheel being on the wrong side, and the thirst of their V8 engines. The thing with this however is that these people have never owned one, or even driven one. Because if they had, then they would realise that infact, it's not that hard at all. In all honesty, it's pretty easy, I have never found they size of the beast to be a problem, or even its thirst. I find that for the most part they are on par with European cars of the era. For miles per gallon I would say that the Trans Am is more economical than the Scorpio! The only real drawback that I have found is that the steering wheel is on the wrong side, and even this is only a problem at toll booths, and getting in and out of car parks! Apart from that it's pretty easy. But none of this really matters at the moment, as frankly despite almost all of the tearaways getting torn off, the phone hasn't rung once...


Although I have had one text message... But it's in French! I have replied in my best CSE French and I am awaiting a reply, however my feeling is that this will probably end up on the bay of E at some point. Joy of joys! Having said that, and looking at it outside my window tonight, I am wondering to myself what the hurry to sell it is all about anyway!

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