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Keane165's 1970 LeMans

2022 June
of the Month

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New 66 GTO Owner

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I inherited a 66 GTO 389 Tri-power from my father in law.  It was meticulously restored about 20 years ago but I  have had a few issues and would like some guidance.  First the starter which is OEM and has been rebuilt a number of times gives me fits.  It gets heat soaked and in the best of times just struggles. Now it has given out, again.  I am thinking about a mini starter.  Has anyone made the switch? Is this a good option?  Second, the tri power carbs.  When I got it my father in law had disconnected all but the center carb.  I think they were just too fickle.  I know purists say "keep the tri-power" but would I be better off having a new 4 barrel installed instead (both cost of installation/repair and performance)?  I am NOT looking to race, nor to enter the car into any serious car shows.  This is a car to take out on weekends with the family and maybe take to an occasional local event or church car show. I am more interested in DEPENDABILITY.  Any thoughts????

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hi Tallmike , and welcome to forever pontiac :cheers:

a good brand  mini starter, should last you a life time of weekend cruising and  will help no end with that heat soak, a good heat shield will also help a stock starter too , am guessing , your running headers to be having this issue.

carb wise, yeah, go for a nice stock 4 barrel and dual plane manifold for street use and a good tune up is all you will need for reliability, is my thoughts, some of the guys here with tri carbs maybe able to enlighten you on good tuning of what you have already.:pontiac:

any pictures of your 66 ?:) 

Edited by 64 kiwi boni
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Welcome.  You could sell the intake complete with all 3 carbs and linkage for what it would cost you for a stock or name brand replacement and carb.  Most manufacturers sell a complete kit.  Agree with KIWI on the starter.  Did anyone mention we like pic's??????

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Beautiful ride!   I would look into a carb style fuel injection. 


This will give you a good look at what you need.   There are other units out there to compare, and always good to shop around for the best price when you figure out what you want.

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Oh Tallmike!!! what a great green that is!!👍 it looks fantastic mate:cheers:

i am certainly with JustA about the holley fuel injection kit, i have not used one my self but have researched them and the holley kit is a excellent bang for buck unit.:dancingpontiac:and will make for an easy cold start, running economical  conversion, especially with today's fuels!🙄

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Tallmike, the heat soak is a fairly common issue with Pontiacs. Are you running headers by chance versus a stock exhaust manifold? Wrap around headers seem to cause a lot of heat soak issues versus factory headers/manifolds.

Most people don't realize that Pontiac had a normal and a heavy duty starter. The heave duty start is more resistant to heat soak, but it certainly isn't immune. A reflective heat shield or heat wrap will also help longevity. A smaller mini-torque start will work, I would recommend using the kind that you can index for the best fit. Don't be surprised though if you still have to shim it.

Also check to make sure the wires are not coming in contact with either the block or exhaust manifold/headers. I had that happen and it burned a hole through the insulation of the positive lead to bare wire. When it was hot, the wire would touch the engine and ground out  and not start. When it cooled off, the wire contracted, it lost contact and it would start. So make sure the wiring is not touching anything either.

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