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Old 04-08-2009   #1
GTA50
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Unhappy My GTA caught fire!!

So, I got one of those great telephone calls at my office - our Safety and Security people telling me that my car had caught fire in the parking lot. The Fire Department and Police were there....

The engine compartment was fully involved but fortunately the interior and back half of the car are fine. The insurance company will probably want to write it off.

I guess I'll be doing that frame up restoration.....
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Old 04-08-2009   #2
87bucketgta
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Dam man, that really really sucks man!!!!! Ive had everything else happen to me but that!!! Im really sorry man, atleast u were not driving it at the time.
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Old 04-08-2009   #3
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: My GTA caught fire!!

That does suck!!! Glad no one was in the car. I hope it can be repaired.
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 04-08-2009   #4
GTA50
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Thanks Jamie and Cliff. I'm glad I wasn't in the car either. Body burns are not pretty or pleasant to deal with!!

My first look is that the body damage is easy to repair. I have a front clip in my shop that I took off a '87 Trans Am. So, that is no issue. The interior looks fine - even the dash pad looks good (just discolored from the smoke). I'll just have to go through the electronics (I'm concerned about the digital dash).

As for the engine compartment, I'll pull the engine to see how the block is and go from there, I'll have to do a replacement of all of the underhood components. That will be fun. The fire melted the radiator and the urethane ground effects, so most of the heat was forward. The front rims look fine as well.

I know the insurance company will want to write it off, but I've already told them that is not an option. So, I'll wait and see what kind of an allowance I get for repairs. They'll also probably have some other stipulations before they will ever allow it back on the road of course.

I'll keep you posted. Guess I'll also start a photo album of my progress on the restoration.
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Old 04-08-2009   #5
strc09
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GTA Year: 1988
GTA Engine: Custom
Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Damn...sorry to here that happened to your car. Good luck with the insurance company.
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Old 04-08-2009   #6
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

On the wiring harness, Painless Performance makes a replacement. hth
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 04-08-2009   #7
GTA50
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Thanks Cliff. That definitely helps. I do have the wiring harness for the lights forward, but this will be an added plus.

Right now I can confirm I can empathize with the yellow guy below. The ----- of the matter is that I just put the car on the road yesterday for a spring/summer of driving pleasure.



Gary.
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Old 04-09-2009   #8
87bucketgta
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Yea Mr. Cliff is right, the harness is made by painless. Look on the positive side perfect time for an upgrade. Hope I atleast cracked a grin!!! HEHE!!
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Old 04-09-2009   #9
2manytoys
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Gary
Sorry to here the bad news. Hopefully the ground up will be fun. Any idea what shorted out and started the fire?
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Old 04-09-2009   #10
GTA50
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Thanks for the sympathy as well Bob.

No idea on the cause. My commute time is about 1 h, 15 min and I didn't smell anything during the drive. The car had been parked when the fire started. Since the fire appears to have been concentrated at the front of the engine, I'm thinking either a short through the battery or a short in one of the cooling fan motors since that is all that should energize with the ignition off.

The biggest challenge on the frame up build will be getting all of the proper components for the engine bay.

I'll post some pictures when I get the car home from the tow yard.
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Old 04-09-2009   #11
TexasRaider
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTA50
No idea on the cause.
You know, a few years ago I a read an article in
"Vette" magazine about a guy's 1981 Vette burning up in a restaurant parking lot for no reason, apparently.

Well, he finally found out that what caused it was some of the then 'new' govt. mandated fuel additives like MTBE (circa 1993: Clinton years, of course) actually caused fuel system components to dissolve.

Fuel lines and certain seals in older cars were vulnerable to these 'environmentally protecting' additives and they essentially melted. Once the fuel began to leak, it only took an electrical spark or a really hot header and *POOF*, hot rod flambe. Which is what the guy this Corvette dude found out happened.

You might to not use original factory parts for the fuel system but newer and more resilient parts. Or at least check and see what the fuels available up in B.C. have in them so it doesn't happen twice.



Nothing quite protects the envionment like a car burning to the ground, eh?

.
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Old 04-09-2009   #12
Andy 91GTA
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Sorry to hear about your car. Let us know how you make out with the insurance company too.
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Bright Red w/black cloth
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Old 04-15-2009   #13
mr.turbota
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Egads!
What a terrible thing to happen.
Sorry for your loss and pain.
I hope things will work out for you, but insurance companies can be a royal pain in the ass.
The main thing is, is that you are all right.

George
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Old 04-15-2009   #14
GTA50
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

One of the first thoughts that went through my mind George was how lucky you were with that loose wire from your fuel pump!!!

I'm glad I wasn't in my car either when it went up.

Of course the Insurance Corporation of BC wants to write the car off and I do not have the option of a buy-back (just search "ICBC Chop Shop to get your answers). So, my only option is to cancel the claim - which I did. Reason? Even if I don't do the frame-up and decide to buy another GTA, I could use the parts from my current car and be light-years ahead of where I was when I bought my GTA and trying to fix 20 years of neglect.

I should have the car home tomorrow and for all posterity, I'll post pictures. Then the stripping and re-build starts - might even have more longevity than that "Song of the Day" thread. What to you think TR?
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Old 04-15-2009   #15
TexasRaider
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTA50
What to you think TR?
Jeez..gettin' beat up over picking on the song thread...
Considering the subject of this thread, I have a pretty HOT IDEA as to what we might do to the SONG OF THE DAY thread....






.
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Old 04-16-2009   #16
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

I somehow missed this thread.


I am VERY sorry to hear about what happened to your car Gary.

I saw an 80's Firebird that caught fire last week off of I-75 in Florida. Hearing your story makes me wonder how common this might actually be. It's extremely frightening to think that I could take my car out for a weekend drive, park it back in the garage and have my home burn to the ground.

My wife has been after me for months to let go of the GTA. I originally bought it for my son (now 19) who no longer has any interest in it. Now, I am thinking that I will go ahead and send her away to a new home for good.

Again ... sorry for the late chime in. Best of luck and thank God you weren't in the car.
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Old 04-17-2009   #17
GTA50
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Thanks for the additional condolences Patrick, Andy, TR and Darrell. Here are some initital pictures from when the car came home.





It isn't as bad as it looks. My wife was quite upset, but I have the resources and capacity to do the restoration my self. So, I'll get started and photo my progress.
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Old 04-17-2009   #18
intake68
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Oh wow thats bad Sorry for the loss.
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Old 04-18-2009   #19
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Cant wait to see some pics of the restoration.
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 04-18-2009   #20
87bucketgta
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Re: My GTA caught fire!!

Man I really hate that!!!!!!!!!! Wish we didnt live so far apart would love to give you any help u need with it!!
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