The Cavalier Project (Page 2)


Photos and writeup by Trevor Freeman.

FEBRUARY 2005: NEW WHEELS, TIRES, AND BUMPERS
The Z24 wheels sat around for a few months while I saved up for tires. In February of 2005, I got a set of four new Cooper Zeon ZPT tires for $99 each. They measure 225/50-R16 and carry A ratings for both temperature and treadwear. They are also H-rated for speeds up to 130mph. I was very proud of my wheels.
New wheels and tires. February 2005. New wheels and tires. February 2005.

Not long after that, I came across an ad on a message board from a man who was selling a set of Z24 bumpers. We worked out a deal and agreed to meet halfway between Palm Springs and Phoenix in Blythe, California. $250 dollars later, I had myself some bumpers.
Used Z24 bumpers. February 2005. Used Z24 bumpers. February 2005.

MARCH 2005: ACCESSORIES AND BODY WORK
The bumpers needed a lot of TLC before they could go on the car. While I worked on sanding them down for primer and paint, I purchased a set of Z24 fog lamps and a filler plate for the front bumper.
Z24 fog lamps. February 2005. Z24 filler plate. February 2005.

During this time, I also had my windows tinted. It was $150 dollars at the Chevy dealer. I chose 35% for the front two windows and 6% for the back three. Arizona law only regulates the front windows and the windshield tint.
Limo tinted windows. March 2005. Limo tinted windows. March 2005.

Getting back to the bumpers now, they were ready for primer after countless hours of sanding. With the help of some friends we gathered up a 5 gallon air compressor with a moisture filter/pressure regulator, an HVLP paint gun, and some primer from the Sherwin Williams automotive paint store. Below are some pictures of the primer in my friend's garage. The paper masks were very inadequate for this job and we all got headaches.
Spraying the primer. March 2005. Spraying the primer. March 2005.

After some more sanding the bumpers were ready to be painted.
Sanded, primed, and ready for paint. March 2005. Two stage paint. March 2005.

JUNE 2005: BUMPERS PAINTED AND INSTALLED
Well I forgot to take pictures when painting the bumpers and door handles, and when I installed the clear corner lights. Anyway, everything turned out alright.
Painted and installed front bumper. June 2005. Painted and installed rear bumper. June 2005.

JULY 2005: SOUND DEADENING MATERIAL
A few more months passed and I moved on to my next big project. Over the weekend I stripped out all the seats, carpet, and interior to install 100 square feet of B-Quiet Ultimate sound dampening material. I spent $250 on the stuff and I expected big results.
Before installation. July 2005. Before installation. July 2005.

B-Quiet installed in the car. Pictures make it look easy but this stuff is very messy!
After installation. July 2005. After installation. July 2005.

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2005: PAINTED BRAKES
December 2005: Being low on funds I decided that cleaning up the stock brakes would be a good project. I bought some Prestone Brake Cleaner in a spray can and a wire brush and went to work. Once I got the rust and grime off and they didn't look quite so bad. A few coats of VHT Brake Paint made them look even better. I decided not to paint the middle part where the wheel rests, it cannot be seen when the wheels are on anyway.
Brake drum before cleaning and painting. November 2005. Brake drum after cleaning and painting. November 2005.
Brake caliper before cleaning and painting. November 2005. Brake drum after cleaning and painting. November 2005.
Brake drum after cleaning and painting. November 2005. Brake drum after cleaning and painting. November 2005.

Please continue to page three for more pictures and modifications.