Category Archives: Members’ Cars and Photos

‘70 Trans Am of Bob Himes from Spring City, Pennsylvania

PONTIAC GUY

I’ve been a Pontiac guy nearly my whole life. I grew up street racing a 1969 GTO, and along the way I’ve owned a 1976 Trans Am and a 1983 Trans Am. I currently own a 1965 Tri power GTO.

Last August, I was sitting out back on a Friday night with my wife enjoying a beverage when my friend Mike called. He asked if I was interested in going in on a car with him to work on over the winter and flip in the spring. He said he thought of me because the car he found was a Pontiac. After asking him several questions about his find, I realized that he may have found one of my dream cars – a 1970 Trans Am. I told Mike if it’s what I think it is, I want the car for myself! He thought I was crazy, but he was excited for me.

The following Monday, I met up with Mike to check out the car. As the garage door was opened, my eyes feast upon a Polar White 1970 TA RAIII 4-speed. The car had been sitting in that garage since 1998! The car showed 56k miles on the matching numbers engine. It had some light surface rust on the body, but otherwise it was solid. After extensively inspecting the car and finding no issues, I did some quick negotiating and loaded the car on to our trailer.

I decided to do a complete frame off restoration since it is, after all, one of my dream cars. We dropped the frame, disassembled the suspension and sent it out for media blasting. The engine was broken down, and completely rebuilt to stock. Everything on the engine was rebuilt instead of replaced to try and keep it as original as possible. While that was being worked on, the car was sent to the body shop for a strip down, body work and paint. This is a good time to mention I also sent out all the chrome to Speed Sport Chrome who advertises in the back of the Eagle. Craig did an amazing job on it.

During the restoration, we had an amazing thing happen. I purchased the car in August, but sadly my Mom passed away in September. After her passing, I told my family that I was dedicating the car to her and so I named the car “Carol”. Everyone loved the idea! Then, when the interior was starting to be disassembled, the glove box door was removed and there written in white marker from the factory was the name “Carol”. Talk about being speechless! At that point, my wife declared it was meant to be.

Carol’s restoration is now complete. My wife and I enjoy taking her out for weekend drives. She looks, runs, and handles incredibly. Ride on Carol!

Bob Himes
Spring City, PA

‘70 Trans Am of Bob Himes from Spring City, Pennsylvania
‘70 Trans Am of Bob Himes from Spring City, Pennsylvania
‘70 Trans Am of Bob Himes from Spring City, Pennsylvania

’99 Trans Am 30th Anniversary Edition of Tom Joseph

A National Firebird and Trans Am Club featured car is the ‘99 Trans Am 30th Anniversary Edition of Tom Joseph from Clarkston, Michigan.

Here is my 30th Anniversary Trans Am. It’s one of 292 coupes with a Hurst 6 speed. I drive it as much as possible in Michigan. Thanks to the National Firebird and Trans Am Club for all the technical advice and putting on a great shows every year!

‘99 Trans Am 30th Anniversary Edition of Tom Joseph from Clarkston, Michigan.
‘99 Trans Am 30th Anniversary Edition of Tom Joseph from Clarkston, Michigan.
‘99 Trans Am 30th Anniversary Edition of Tom Joseph from Clarkston, Michigan.

Firebird and Trans Am Gallery

‘67 Firebird of Lawrence Sobczak from Gurnee, Illinois
67 Firebird of Lawrence Sobczak from Gurnee, Illinois – The 1967 was bought as a father/son project. Pops passed away. It’s still a work in progress. Now it’s a father/daughter project. Best way to teach your kid about cars is to get them invested.
‘76 Trans Am of Lawrence Sobczak from Gurnee, Illinois
‘76 Trans Am of Lawrence Sobczak from Gurnee, Illinois – Dream car purchase. Had been searching for a 455/4spd but that’s almost impossible to find. This one is a 400/Auto and I still love it. Was restored once by a previous owner. Still needs a little attention here and there.
‘85 Firebird of Randy Mushro
85 Firebird of Randy Mushro

’78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato

A National Firebird and Trans Am Club featured car is the ‘78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato of Davenport, Iowa. Here is the story as submitted by Dwayne Johnson:

Stephen Granato, of Davenport, IA, acquired this 1978 Trans Am in August 2016 from an Illinois resident that had owned it since 1988. Originally a California car from Salta Pontiac in Long Beach, CA, it has the Olds 403 and automatic. Originally brown in color, it was taken down to bare metal and repainted in GM Lime Rock green by a local shop. The interior was completely redone by Stephen, with original style panels, covers, and carpeting. An upgraded stereo was cleverly hidden in the glove compartment to preserve the stock dash. Stephen also replaced all brake, fuel and vapor lines, hoses, fuel tank, a/c, brakes, window motors, weather stripping, all bushings in vehicle were replaced with Energy Suspension parts, shorty, ceramic coated headers and complete header back exhaust installed. Shaker hood scoop was made functional with an electric flap kit. Underside of car was cleaned and coated by Stephen. All of this was accomplished in time to drive the car to Detroit for the 2017 Woodward Dream Cruise in August 2017. Many nights, weekends, (and memories made) were spent making a dream come true. Time well spent on something to keep forever!

'78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato
'78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato
'78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato
'78 Trans Am of Stephen Granato

’69 Firebird of Ken Miller

’69 Firebird of Ken Miller

A National Firebird and Trans Am Club  featured car is the ‘69 Firebird of Ken Miller from Enfield, Connecticut. Here is his story:

My 69: As a new member of the club, I am sending you some pictures of my recently acquired 1969 Firebird. The car underwent a 6 year restoration to stock by the original owner. who reluctantly sold it to start work on another project, and needed the extra cash and space for his new project vehicle. He was very meticulous with the project, and the only modifications are the 69 Trans Am rear spoiler, and exhaust tips. The 400 motor was rebuilt with speed pro racing lifters and a Crane cam setup identical to the one Pontiac used on the 69 Ram Air IV engine. Even the exhaust was replaced with the correct factory setup with the single transverse mounted rear muffler. All of the receipts pics, etc. were sent to me with the car. Looking forward to hitting the many car shows and cruises when the good weather gets here, as well as putting some miles on her as well.

 

’79 Trans Am S.E. of Ken & Darlene Szymczak

A National Firebird and Trans Am Club featured car is the ‘79 Trans Am S.E. of Ken & Darlene Szymczak from Dunkirk, New York. Here is their story:

It was November in 1978 that I ordered my 1979 black and gold Y84 Special Edition Trans Am. It came with the 6.6 403 automatic, 225/70R15 white lettered tires, the S. E. package including T-Tops, stripes and the “bird” on the hood, AM-FM stereo radio and power windows. All for $8500.

Everyone in our family has had the pleasure of driving and enjoying our Trans Am. Our son and daughter both learned how to drive in the Trans Am and passed on their first drivers’ test. It was also fun to see my mother and father driving the Trans Am.

It is hard to believe that this November it will be 40 years since I ordered our Trans Am. It still looks good and we get complements wherever we go. Who knew back then that it would become a part of our family.

We love going to car shows and sometime winning trophies and sometimes not. I display the original window sticker along with the build sheet. And the people are just amazed at what the car cost back then.

Now with my wife and me retired and all the memories we will have plenty of time driving the road hearing that great sound of our 1979 Trans Am.

 

’69 Firebird of George N. Farley from Ferndale, Michigan

In 1967, GM entered the pony car market with the Camaro and Firebird, which set out to redefine the genre.

A lifestyle vehicle, the Firebird was designed to appeal to younger audiences, while having enough available features to attract almost any kind of buyer.

This vehicle is an excellent example of a low production and rare true “pony car”.

The last year of the first generation Pontiac pony car. Designed to offer a little more luxury that the competition but still be affordable. The base models like this were just for young drivers and with engine options it turned into a formidable muscle car.

Built in November 1968, delivered in Indiana and taken to California. The second owner then brought it to Michigan and kept it as a Sunday cruiser, never taking it out in the rain. I purchased it unrestored in 1992 with 66,000 miles. Since then its been an ongoing project with a body off restoration completed in 2012. The body parts are all original with complete white pearl interior. The original drivetrain has never been apart and performs perfectly.

The unique thing about this car is its lack or options. 350 2 bbl, powerglide transmission, manual drum brakes and manual convertible top. The definition of the pony car – “Less Is More”.

Nicknamed the “Funtiac” this car has been driven as far as New York, Iowa, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Notable awards include: GM corporate award for best restored vehicle at St. Ignace, AACA National Senior and Grand National 1st Place and POCI National Gold Award.