Getting close to finishing phase 1 that a bottle of champagne is in my mind. Phase 2 will be ac rebuild with phase 3 being body and paint. "Mission Creep" is a good description of what happened with my project. When I started, had no intention of doing most of what went on and what is to come. Some of this was my belief the car was in good condition and cost. As I went along kept finding more that really needed rebuild. Cost limitation finally went out the window. Interior repairs - What worked and what flopped: Went to this effort to retain original parts. Was flying by the seat of my pants for such work was new to me. Found some threads that helped with some parts while others I had to come up with the how-to or if it would even work. - - FLOPS - - - Housing for dash instruments. Two attempts to make properly sized metal mounting tabs were not sufficient for the carrier to fit - - - Door sill plates: Were dimpled and badly scratched but after removing most of the dents and sanding down the surface, found I like the dull aluminum look better than the anodized chrome surface. Problem was one screw hole no longer had the seat. To improvise a seat, used JB Weld to bond a steel washer to the underside of the sill plate. A test install and the washer held but came off after the carpet was installed. - - - Lower Dash Panel: The entire horizontal surface had plastic cancer. Eventually got a stable surface and initially liked the repair but over time it bugged me more and more. The area behind the arm rest has a seam that is noticeable but not to bad. However the forward area has a very noticeable seam for the repair extended a short distance down the vertical side and a BIG dent. The OER panel has a good fit and grain pattern. - - - Sail panels (both): The sealed split on the underside above the package tray cracked open during the install - - SUCCESSES - - - Carpet: The recolor turned out far better than I hoped. Stayed with the 1986 carpet for it had good nap, was not a molded set and I wanted cut-pile (do not like loop which is all that I found in pre-made carpeting). Not being a molded set turned out to be important for the amount of insulation would not have enabled a good install - - - door panel (both): Rick Schmidt had a thread how he used license plate metal to repair the cardboard slots on the back for the fasteners. Modified it to fit my situation - - - dash carrier fastener location: One carrier fastener location was partially broken and would not hold the j-hook for the carrier screw to tighten. After trying this and that found a piece of sheet metal behind the remaining tab enabled the j-hook to hold and the carrier screw tightens down as it should - - - console lid: Had many bad cracks and two threaded posts for screws had broken away. Loctite super glue and plastic strips fixed the problem. Lid opens and closes smoother than it has since the later 70s. Barely a trace of the damage can be detected - - - reinstalling a shaft-knob receiver: Had enlarged the dash opening for a modern receiver but found the receiver would not work with the 1986 Kenwood components. Found posts where others were unable to go back to a shaft style but fortunately the cassette-radio face plate covered the enlarged opening Recovering the seats - - OER SF 139 does not fit rear seat bun and bench frames. All sellers of this part state it will fit 1970-1981 Camaro and Firebird but it can not because the two cars have different seat frames. The F-Bird is a single layer frame (FBodywarehouse videos) and the Camaro (at least mine) are two levels. I emailed photos to Classic Industries of bun foam and the much thinner factory burlap-jute-cotton on bun frames. - - Front foam still good to reuse Bought new front seat foam before removing the covers to have an upholster look over the foam. Turns out the foam was still good. Fortunately Summit Racing allowed a return using their UPS label with that cost to be deducted from the refund. Through SR, the UPS cost for each box was only $18. If I had to pay the shipping, the cost per box would have been $66. - - Frame and sliding track refinished. Though they will not show when installed know something rusty was inside the otherwise refinished interior would bug me. Lubricated the tracks (Slick 50) and they slide better than i can remember. Installing the rails (for fit) and seat belts was difficult because of the thickness of insulation below. In a few places had to cut some out - - Seats at the upholster: I tried a few fittings (no hog rings) and decided the results would not look as good as I want. Took frames, cushioning and PUI covers to four shops for estimates.Two shops were $850 and $925 based on fixed cost per seat and the one selected charged by the amount of work that being $450. Owner said the cushioning is still good and recovering will be wrinkle free. The work will start this week Found the 8 holes for 6 headliner hooks: The new 1986 headliner did not include holes for the clothes hanger hooks and the shoulder belt retainer. Back then and still today I do not remember the hooks for the shoulder belt. What I did was bend hooks from clothes hanger and stick them behind the headliner rails. Pretty darn tacky huh. With a post from COPO to probe with a long needle and his photos showing the hook locations the holes were found New Door Sill Plates are cloudy: Amazon had the best price at $55 with free shipping from Ricks Camaro and made by Trim Parts. The sills are ALMOST excellent for fit and finish. Driver side, after cleaning off the adhesive residue from the protective film has a narrow 2 foot long cloudy finish. Bought a second set and the same problem on the driver side but different location. Emailed Trim Parts asking how to remove. If it will not remove asked they send me a clean set. Ecklers Automotive said both sets I purchased can be returned and they will provide the return mailer. How does the stereo sound?: With the eq set to filter out frequencies below 400kh, the mid and upper frequencies (especially vocals) are more distinct (which I like) but over all sound is weak (to be expected). Fader control on the eq gets a good balance with the rear and sound blending. Surprised by the strong base from the rear 6x9. At 1:10, "Why" on "Mystery to Me" album by Fleetwood Mac has thunderous base drum strikes for which I can feel a strong sound wave Window weather seals don't fit: OER A-pillar end was about 1 1/2" to short and other issues. Two sets of Metro RR7002 have a large gap between the inner edge and car body. The second set was provided by Metro. Been working with Metro production (Mike) about the fit. The inner edge mates quite well with the car body. Going to move the inner edge against the car body, mark location through the end pin holes and drill new holes into the car body. The ws in the rail will be be pushed upward some. Mike will provide extra ends to experiment with. Just emailed questions to Mike about the modification. Will wait for reply before starting Significant increase of lumination on tach and speedo WITHOUT LED: Had been a lot years since they were luminated but I don't remember it being so weak but after the below modifications the lumination is more than sufficient. I am 62 and wear glasses when reading using the computer and some Camaro work but lumination is good for me 1, Opened more space for light to go between the tach-speedo and the black dash cover lens by sanding down the round inner edge on the backside of the black dash. I found this increase sufficient but wanted more 2. lined the inside of the housing cluster with foiled duct tape for I saw a lot of light coming through the sides of the repro housing 3. Foil duct tape on seam of instrument housing and black dash to keep light from escaping. Was going to try a seal but no way to apply enough pressure on the entire surface of the black dash I will install LED for nine 194s are used as dash lights, with 5 in aftermarket gauges. Total amps pulled is 2.43 amps on a 3 amp fuse, if the light switch knob is turned all the way. Also have the amperage of the heater bulb. SuperBrightLeds.com has a direct replacement with natural white light at 35 lumes or 90 lumens. Lumens for an incandescent 194 is 25. Seems senseless to get leds with lower lumens than the incandescent. Dome and console rear light to LED: Not at this time for have not found the needed lumens and light color. The incandescent 211 puts out 150 lumens as white natural light (4,000k). The highest LED lumen so far is 120 and the white is 6,000k for a blueish hue. 42mm Festoon size-style is needed Replacing 4 of 5 aftermarket gauges. The installed Oil pressure and water temperature are mechanical with all 5 mounted in the carrier. This makes for a complicated removal of the carrier and instrument housing because these two have to be removed from the block then pulled into the car, through the instrument housing and out of the carrier. This is an example from early in the rebuild of my going cheap. Already had an Autometer fuel gauge so the 4 are also Autometer. Checked Autozone, Advanced Autoparts, Amazon and Summit and found all were only a few $ difference with free shipping and taxable. Autozone specials though saved me $55.