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1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition (Read 11842 times)
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1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
08/14/08 at 21:16:04
 
Hey All, i'm new to the forum and after a quick looking around, I figured the restoration area would be most appropriate for me to post my first thread. Just to introduce myself, my name is Larissa and i am a 19 year old girl who wishes she knew everything about cars, but unfortunately doesn't ( psst this is where you all come in Wink ! )  Not to say i'm not learning however! and no, i don't live in Philadelphia but I do in fact live way up north in the middle of nowhere Canada.. or Northwest Territories to be more precise.  Enough about me now, and onto my FIRST RESTORE PROJECT.  
 
1973 AMC GREMLIN X LEVIS EDITION
FACTORY 304 V8, 2 BARREL  
3 SPEED MANUAL TRANSMISSION
( all my  numbers match too !! YES! )  
 
This is how i found her.
 

 
Long time sitting! Look at those holes grosssss, thank god the only thing touching was the exhaust and not the frame!  
 

 
The Engine i thought didnt have a hope in hell to start without a rebuild. i was very wrong.
 

 
I would like to introduce you all to my rescued gremlin. This car, which i almost walked right by, was found on my random search in a junkyard here in the Northwest Territories (CANADA).  She looked to be in a terrible state, i didn't even notice she was a gremlin at first until my friend pointed it out. ( stripped of all her decals, smashed windshield, broken headlight+ grill, the long overgrown grass hid any hint of American muscle). We popped the hood after reaching in through the only rolled down drives window ( none of the doors would open she was so sunk into the mud from sitting for i believe was 6-10 years the owner of the yard said ) . I winced - dirty, oil EVERYWHERE, spider webs and what looked like a badly seized rusty engine i decided i would need to do some research and thinking before i even talked to the owner of the yard.  Went home, searched the vin decoder and did a little reading, FELL IN LOVE. Car had to be mine, i didn't care if her engine wouldnt work... i was looking for a project anyway right? The interior was in remarkable shape for sitting in a junk yard and to boot, it was Levi's.  

 
The owner would not go lower than 700$ , so i ended up coughing up the cash, but after working on this baby for a week now, it was TOTALLY worth it. I have already had 4 people offer me upwards to 1000-2000$ for it. I laugh at them because i have educated myself enough to know i have a Gem in my hands. Three days after she was towed out of the yard, we had her up and running, driving too! Brakes are in rough shape, but all she needed to run was a new starter, battery, alternator and ignition ( the keys were stolen along time ago ) and of course i wouldn't start her until i changed all the plugs, fluids and wires.  
 
She purrss..... This is a video of her first start up. Notice all the rusty water and moisture blowing out the back. It made a terrible mess, but it was really funny to watch!  
 
VIDEO
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KB8cot-UO28  
 
 
PICTURES --  
 
http://s39.photobucket.com/albums/e181/73GremlinX/
 
 
I need to upload more, and i will keep this thread updated for anyone who is interested in watching the progress. After work tonight my friend and i are going to start grinding/cutting off the rust and welding sheet metal. Last week we took her for a spin and laid some rubber for the hell of it, fun little car! Tore out the seats and carpet Last night, progress is on its way!
 
 

 
 Smiley !!! I AM SO HAPPY, maybe its a girl thing, or maybe its just love heh!  
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #1 - 08/14/08 at 21:52:35
 
Why can't that be my story  cry!
Welcome Philly, you could possibly be the luckiest girl I've ever seen. Rock On!
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #2 - 08/14/08 at 22:06:13
 
Hah, i bet he thought he was selling you a lump of scrap for that $700!
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #3 - 08/14/08 at 22:13:12
 
so whats the plans for it? Huh
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #4 - 08/14/08 at 22:30:59
 
Grin  
 
I would really just like to restore it back to original. A lot of my friends are ragging on me to give it more power ( like throwing in a 401 ), but i don't think ANYONE should change a Levis Gremlin X, No matter what the case. It wouldn't be worth as much, especially this one, its complete pretty well all original #'s and in fact a collectors. The guy who sold it to me knew it was worth something, but he had no idea its worth as much as it is. I originally offered him 400$ because i didn't even know if it would A. how much it would cost/rebuild and start, B. How rotten the frame might be C. ANYTHING about it. I took a gamble because he was a douche bag, so i took a risk and it just so happened to be worth it!!! I found 3 holes in the floor after tearing out the carpet but the rest of the frame/floor metal components are in excellent shape.  
 
QUESTION - A lot of the plastic panels in this car have become so brittle they have cracked, and in some places even broken off where the screws bolt in. Does anyone know where i can get new ones ( besides trying to find another LEVIS Gremlin that doesn't have the same problem) Or how i can repair these without them looking to different? These Panels are a BLUE color, and this is where it gets difficult because i don't know how i'm going to find another gremlin with blue panels to take. Gah, painting them would look terrible too :\
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #5 - 08/14/08 at 23:02:32
 
kennedy American will have your parts and if they don't they will let you know who does
http://kennedyamerican.com/
and i'm with your friends stick a 360 or 401 in it with a 4, 5 or even 6 speed cuz who cares how much its worth unless your just planning on selling it, plus a 401  will bolt right in so if you ever want to change it back, you can with out any problem and no one will know
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #6 - 08/15/08 at 00:33:04
 
I've always said, Chicks dig Gremlins! (Ken sez that too!) hehe
 
I say keep it original! It's not all that often you get to see a Gremlin that is still the way it was born. 304, 3 speed Levi's Gremlin? Bonzah! I would add a power booster to the brake system for safety's sake and maybe add a rear sway bar but nothing that would detract from the cars' appearance or dare I say it ---- character?
 
As the owner of a '70˝ Big Bad Green 6-cylinder car, I'm always happy to meet other folks with a passion for Gremlins Smiley
 
As for parts Philly, you're kinda left to scour ebay, junkyards and swapmeets for parts. There are very few reproduction parts made for AMC's - mostly just AMX's.
So yeah, finding good interior parts will definitely be a chore, but don't worry - you can always DYE the plastic parts to whatever you need. Make friends at the Local Napa and they will help you mix up whatever interior colour dye you need.  I did a V8 Hornet a few years ago and could never find tan interior parts. Only green, blue or nutmeg. I dyed many interior parts from blue to tan and nobody could ever tell I did that!  
 
Keep an eye on ebay, join a car club, meet folks and make friends! That's mostly what the car culture is all about anyway! (Sweet car, btw!)  Cool
 
Oh and PS - Gremlin's interchange a LOT of parts with Hornets, Spirits, Eagles and Concords all the way from 1970 thru 1987!!  
Dashpads '70 to '77
Door Panels '70 to '77 (though the '78 and up FULL door panels will work on early doors)
Kick Panels / Package Trays '70 to '87
Rear cargo plastic is Gremlin only and changed through the years '70 to '73 for twin latches, '74 to '76 for single latches, '77/'78 for large rear window.
Carpets & Seats - just go make friends at a local upholstery shop if you're not concerned about originality. I had a local guy sew up my Hornet interior in a pattern I designed and nobody could tell it from a factory pattern.
 
The beauty of the AMC is that the driveline parts interchange for 20+ years and the aftermarket gets bigger every day. You should have NO problem finding parts (unless it has Kelsey-Hayes brakes - but it shouldn't)
 
Windshield is Gremlin, Hornet, Spirit, Eagle, Eagle Wagon, Concord from '70 to '87. No issues there.
Back window Gremlin '70-'73.  
 
 
 
Your car just needs two things to be complete:
 
An 8-track player and Blue Fuzzy dice!   Muhuhahahahahahahaaaaa!  Cheesy
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'75 Hornet Hatchback 304/5 Speed Chrome Yellow
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #7 - 08/15/08 at 02:31:11
 
That's one heck of a junkyard find.  Smiley
 
From the sounds of things, there will be a LOT of work involved in getting it back to a semi-original state.  The AMC parts vendors (Kennedy American, Galvins, American Parts Depot) will be some of your biggest friends.
 
As will all the gear-heads here.  Smiley  I'm not hugely mechanically savvy, and the guys here have helped me a lot.  I'm even in the middle of rebuilding my first engine, something I was absolutely terrified to even THINK about just a couple months ago.   Grin
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #8 - 08/15/08 at 06:41:04
 
You want more powere you don't haaave to have a 401,a AMC 360 will work just as good,my 74's a factory 304 X car too and its now a built 360 race/street car.
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #9 - 08/15/08 at 18:58:33
 
no, this is true, i mean don't get me wrong i would not mind throwing a bigger engine in, but im just afraid to demise its value, i want to own a very original car. I need a rear posi back end, mine is shot dead.
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #10 - 08/15/08 at 19:12:23
 
I wouldn't worry about the engine changing the value of the car. Gremlins aren't exactly six pack mopars when it comes to resale.  Just get it on the road and enjoy!
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #11 - 08/15/08 at 21:31:01
 
Quote from Ozmiander on 08/15/08 at 19:12:23:
I wouldn't worry about the engine changing the value of the car. Gremlins aren't exactly six pack mopars when it comes to resale.  Just get it on the road and enjoy!

 
I agree totally, maybe in 30 years she might be worth a little something but build it how you want it to drive and you cant go wrong, you can always save all the original parts and engine for later if you want to restore it and sell it. Also Philly, dont sell painting and re-molding interior parts short, you can look at some of the cars' interiors here and would never know they were hand molded with fiberglass and repainted or one of the other 200 ways to redo interior panels, its just a little dirty work, I have refabbed every panel in my Jav, but I am going with a total resto mod look so "originality" isnt in my dictionary!!! Wink But as Ozmiander said, if it was a Superbird or something I would totally agree with restoration, but build that baby to scream, very few things as bada$$ as a screamin Gremmy with some wide rear rubber, and a 360 or a 401 definitely would be my vote. Just my 2 cents. Good Luck, JP
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #12 - 08/15/08 at 22:46:06
 
I can under stand just how she feels. My 75 GremlinX is a factory v8/auto car with 65k or 66k on it. It was bone stock when I got it, got to be over 12 years now, sitting in someone’s drive and like you starter, batt & some hoses it started right up. With a little more work it was on the road for a week when I pull it off to do body work and paint.
Over the years I have changed some things but to look at it you would not know, Holley 2v on stock intake, duel exh. With stock exh. Manifolds, shift kit in trany & and lock right locker in the rear with the stock 2.87 gears. I just cant think of changing it much from stock.
It should come off the road again for a good going over,  body work & paint but I have other AMC’s I want to put my time & money in to so it kind of sits most of the time.
 
As bad as it is my 19 year old son washed it up good and took it to a show 125 miles away ( he has balls Wink  ) because he did not want to take his toyoya p/u. I know it made it up hope it makes it back.
Do it your way, you have to live with it and have fun.
Dave ----
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #13 - 08/15/08 at 23:39:33
 
Quote from FuzzFace2 on 08/15/08 at 22:46:06:
I can under stand just how she feels. My 75 GremlinX is a factory v8/auto car with 65k or 66k on it. It was bone stock when I got it, got to be over 12 years now, sitting in someone’s drive and like you starter, batt & some hoses it started right up. With a little more work it was on the road for a week when I pull it off to do body work and paint.
Over the years I have changed some things but to look at it you would not know, Holley 2v on stock intake, duel exh. With stock exh. Manifolds, shift kit in trany & and lock right locker in the rear with the stock 2.87 gears. I just cant think of changing it much from stock.
It should come off the road again for a good going over,  body work & paint but I have other AMC’s I want to put my time & money in to so it kind of sits most of the time.

As bad as it is my 19 year old son washed it up good and took it to a show 125 miles away ( he has balls Wink  ) because he did not want to take his toyoya p/u. I know it made it up hope it makes it back.
Do it your way, you have to live with it and have fun.
Dave ----

 
You should totally get that Grem out of your driveway Fuzz.  In fact, give me a couple hours and i'll come from Albany as soon as i can find a negative 1500lb tow dolly to bring it home with my ranger  Wink
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Re: 1973 AMC Gremlin X - Levi's Edition
Reply #14 - 08/15/08 at 23:49:28
 
304's are great little motors!! Not everybody wants to drive a 13-second car!
 
The 304 in my Hornet was a completely stock shortblock. I threw on a factory 4bbl intake with a Edelbrock 600 4-pot carb. Dual exhaust's with a cross-over, turbo mufflers, a fan clutch, reworked distributor and that's it!
 
My Hornet had a 5 speed and a 2.87 one legger.  
 
I LOVED that car! It had plenty of giddyap, got great mileage and I'm sure that dude in the Porsche 911 is STILL wondering what the hell I had under my hood. He couldn't pull away from me no matter how hard he tried! (it was an older 911)
 
I'm sure a warmed up 304 in a Gremlin would eat most anybody else's lunch.  
 
If that car were mine, I'd do a few little things:
Factory 4bbl intake (or Performer) with a Eddy 600
Fan Clutch
Add a Four Speed and 3.15 gears (which I'd be willing to bet it's already got)
 
Nothing that can't be returned to factory in an afternoon - but even still, run a stock intake with an Edelbrock 600 and the factory air cleaner will still plop right on.  
 
Of course I'd also do the obligatory 8-track player, fuzzy dice and novelty horn Cheesy
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'75 Hornet Hatchback 304/5 Speed Chrome Yellow
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'73 Javelin "Victory Edition" 360/Auto Trans Am Red
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