1971 Pontiac Ventura II                     page 5

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We're happy to report yet another project completion...this is Bruce Schafer's new silver bullet ( bruceschafer@yahoo.com ).  The stripe treatment was inspired by Shawn Shay's green '72 elsewhere on the site.  These photos were done by his 7 year old daughter...nice job!  In his words:
"The wheels are Cragar S/S, just because I have always liked them (had a set in the seventies) and I really don't like the billet look. I also have Caltracs traction bars on it in anticipation of running it at the local track. The motor runs amazingly well and the throttle response is awesome. This was my first complete motor/tranny/rear end rebuild and so far I am very happy with the results. I am trying to get around 500 miles on it before I take it down the track to make sure it is going to stay together. Hopefully I will be able to post some 1/4 mile times in the next month or so.

"This was a fun project for me. The only thing I did not do myself was the actual paint work, but I did lay out the stripes and primed the car after sanding and sandblasting everything to bare metal. There was not a bit of bondo in the whole car. I fabricated and welded in all the patch pieces to repair the few rust spots, but I knew that I would not have the time (or patience) for the final block sanding work and spraying the metallic paint.

"I did all the interior work myself too. I was a little apprehensive about it at first, but the recovering kit was surprisingly easy to install. I did get a few pointers from the local upholstery shop and bought a hog ring kit (never pass up an opportunity to buy new tools), and it came out great. I dyed the door panels, dash pad, package shelf cover, A and B pillars, and the windlace and they look brand new. The headliner was kind of a pain to put in and I need to restretch a couple of spots, but there is always something."

Meanwhile, Chris ( miracleboy202@hotmail.com ) is getting his own Ventura project underway.  Check out the vintage Pontiac wheel covers. He writes:
"Hey I love your site and it's given me a lot of good ideas of what I'd like to do to my car.  It's a 1971 Ventura II and is definitely a project. It was originally my daily driver but after driving it for one winter I decided to make it a summer only driver. I've recently swapped the original 250 straight six and two speed tranny for a Chevy 307 with 350 turbo tranny. Next I'm looking to do the body work, I've got most of the replacement panels so now all I need is to throw them on and pick a color...by the way, my car's name is 'the Hulk'...due to the green color and loud exhaust.  Since taking these pics I have lifted the rear suspension, new tires and rims as well as dual exhaust."

(L) Stephan Tardif ( stephantardif@hotmail.com ) passes along some photos and details of his 1971 Ventura II : 

"Original body (exept for custom paint job & outside mirrors), - Factory " skyroof ", - 1976 T/A 400 engine + TH 350, - Dual exhaust , - Floor shift with T/A console, - Bucket seats

"Kinda rare car here in Canada (Quebec), never winter driven, in storage for last 15 years...verrrrry low mileage. Dependable, reliable and a lot of fun to drive. 3rd owner of this car and I intend to pass it up to my son but it will take a while..."

(You old school metalheads may recognize the hood art as being from Ronnie James Dio's "Last In Line" LP...your webmaster hosted 4 years of heavy metal radio during college...man, those were fun times!  -Ro).

(R) Beautiful paint on a nicely restored '71

(L) Nik Nikkila ( nik@nikkilamail.com ) scooped up this $300 project and is doing a parts availability survey.  Lucky for him there are considerably more Nova-crossover parts for the '71-'72 body style than the other model years. 

The only other '71 we've seen wearing the Pontiac snowflake rims was in the Phillipines, so let's hope he keeps them  :-)

(R) Harlen Stolt's '71, the immortal "Roaring Avocado", has undergone some secret upgrades.  The side-exiting exhaust is a clue that something's been altered.

Looks like an imminent success story--- you can see that this car is ready for paint:

"I recently (about 7 months ago) purchased a 71 Pontiac Ventura on the West Coast (NO ROT). It started as a $400 Junk Yard find. The doors have been changed taking out the wing window. The front end has been rebuilt and now has Disc Brakes and supports a rebuilt Chevy 350&Turbo Transmission with shift kit New Rubber and Rims and she's almost done. Some of the parts we got from a 1972 Chevelle.

"Currently the car is in Primer and will be painted the first week of April 07' and a new interior installed. More photos will follow after the paint.  This car currently sits in Maine. That's right Maine. We loved it and took it with us...your Web Site has been helpful in doing some research on this car. Thanks, The Lazerguy PAUL BEAUPRE"  ( lazerguy@verizon.net )

Sometimes another person's project can be a parts bonanza:

"I told you i would send you some pics of my project that is in progress as we speak.  I'm doing a full restore, hopefully to be done in June. 

"I bought it in March 06 off Ebay from a guy in Mass.  He had to get rid of it cause of some financial problems.  I bought the car for 1800.00 and he put 3000.00 of parts and labor into it..  He put new brakes, control arm bushings, leaf springs, exhaust, headers, and much more.  The car is a 71 with a 350,  the V8 swap was already done before I got it. 
"The first thing I did was strip all the paint off the car and did alot osandblasting.  I found a little rust pin holes in the trunk and  the rear quarter panels were totally wasted in the normal spots.  I had some rust on the front fenders and on the doors.  I gutted the interior and found only a small rust hole on each side of the front floors.  The seat covers were pretty trashed so I will have to redo those myself also...

"As of right now I have replaced the rear quarter panels, repaired the fenders and doors and have begun to start making the firewall seams smooth.  I'm degreasing and painting the  350 and the TH350 trans.  Plans on the car: I hope that when it is done that the final color choice is going to be black with light blue designs on the front hood/fenders...  My resto is a full one so if you want alot of pics I have them.. I know that what people love to see is a project from start to finish.  Tim" kmm292@aol.com 

Working his own miracles, Chris Haimes ( miracleboy202@hotmail.com ) writes:  "Hey just thought I'd throw you an update on the hulk. I've recently done all of the body work, and have the car in flat black primer right now as it is waiting for paint. It is scheduled to be sprayed on April 1st, so I'm looking forward to seeing the end result...I have already painted the underside of the deck lid and hood, as well as door jambs. Also built a 383 stroker with a stage one nitrous kit, behind that is a th400 tranny with a nice little shift kit turning an aluminum drive shaft and a 12 bolt posi. If all goes well then the car should be on the road mid June, and I'll be sure to send some nice smokey burnout pics of another Pontiac powerhouse. Great job on the site, keep it up!"
Kelly Jenkins tells us about an unexpected happy reunion:

"Hey Roland!  Here is a story about my new/old Pontiac Ventura. She is a 97K original that I purchased from the second owner. She has a 250 six and 2-speed auto trans (they run too good to replace with the 455 yet!)  In a moment of weakness, I put it up for sale on ebay. An awesome young man named Tyler Sheets bought it from me. The hook was that he was serving in Iraq when he bought it!  His dad came to pick it up and as he drove off with it on the trailer, I realized that my eyes were tearing up.

"I knew I liked the car but didn't realize how much it meant to me! Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I have surfed ebay religiously trying to find a decent replacement when my old car popped up!  I bought it and drove to Indiana to get it. I was surprised upon arrival that Tyler was still the owner!  He was happy to see me to as he told his dad, "I think that guy bought his car back!" I am in seventh heaven now that my baby is back. Thanks much for your hard work!  Kelly Jenkins" ( kjamos6869@yahoo.com )

Bernhard Floedl ( phil_consultant@yahoo.com  ) decided it was time to completely overhaul his '71 Ventura, providing us with a look inside a body shop in Manila, the Philippines. (He also sent a bunch more shots of other cool US muscle cars in the same shop, but too late to include them here)

"(It was) October 05 when I had sent you pictures of my red 71 Ventura (307) here in the Philippines.I thought I would let you know that the car is currently under complete renovation and it will get a new color (Molten Orange Candy by Hot Hues from DuPont). I'll turn it into a hot rod. The bench will be replaced by bucket seats and the car will get:

New interior (black with orange stitching)
Engine overhaul and tuning (new 4 barrel carb)
Centralized air-conditioning
All new electrical
New polygraphite suspension & gas shocks
New gauges and gauge panel
New weather strips
New headers and exhausts
GTO scoops on the hood
New chrome all over
Possibly chromed 18" wheels with Dunlop tires ...etc...

"The renovation time is 3 months and the car should be finished by the end of August. I'll send you more photos when my ride is finished. Greetings, Bernie"