Monday, August 14, 2017

Pace Car Air Dam For My 76 Vette | Part 1

For the model year 1978, the Corvette Indy Pace Car edition featured a distinctive front air dam that not only gave the car a more aggressive look but also helped improve its drag coefficient.

In addition to the front air dam, the car also featured a "duck tail" style rear spoiler, also made out of urethane.

But for the 1976 Stingray, those accessories were not available and my car featured a functional chin air dam whose mission was to help direct air to the front of the radiator. Functional, yes. Sexy, definitely not.



Sometimes I want to keep my car all original, but I also like for it to look cool and, frankly, I love how the '78 Pace Car looks with the air dam. I am not 100% sold on the rear spoiler (yet), but I am seriously thinking about it.

Anyway, I checked online and there are two options if you want to add a front air dam. Fiberglass or urethane. The factory used a three-piece urethane air dam which is what I decided to use on mine. Fiberglass can be tricky if the fit is not exactly right and it will crack or break if you hit something stationary, while urethane tends to be a little more forgiving because of its rubber-like consistency.

Of course, these pieces come "natural," and a little bit of preparation is required, but this should be minimal because of the excellent quality of the parts. There will always be a small amount of mold flashing but any competent auto body shop should be able to take care of that without any issues.



The pieces are installed using most of the factory anchor points, but you have to drill a hole in each fender to attach the side deflectors, which come with the necessary studs and nuts.

I will check with a couple of auto body shops to see if they can match the shade of red on my car so everything looks even color wise, and will also ask them to prep the pieces properly, cleaning them up and patching any pinholes or any other small imperfections before applying primer followed by paint.

Plus, because these pieces have a little "give," the shop will have to use a flexing agent for both the primer and top coat.

Installation should not be a big deal, but I may let them take care of everything.

And once that's done, I will decide whether to get the rear spoiler to complete the "aero package."

Stay tuned for photos of the air dam painted and installed.

Here are a couple of pics I found online that show how great the front air dam looks, and the more I look at that red Vette, the more I like how the rear spoiler looks.



As always, thanks for following my '76 Corvette Stingray blog.


See Part 2 by following this link...
Pace Car Air Dam For My 76 Vette | Part 2


Product Links... (#sponsored)

Pace Car Front Spoiler (Air Dam)
1973-1979 C3 Corvette Front Spoiler Mounting Bolt Set

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