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02 info gathering for resto


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Howdy friends 

I have a rust free 73 (or 75) 02 auto that im starting to put together info on to do a light restore and build. I’m building this car for my parents to enjoy in their retirement. They retire in 2 years. Both parents are gear heads. My mom got me started on my bmw path cuz she had a 86 e30 manual that she loved and got me one for my first car then my dad got me into dirt bikes etc. so I want to build this car for them. I originally bought the car to race but it’s an auto with a/c and the body is near perfect with ZERO rust. They have a house in AZ. So I figured why not build this for them. 
 

The car: 

engine runs and idles. Carb leaks 

interior is rough but complete 

exterior is faded and the racetrack trim is rough. 
trans doesn’t produce forward or reverse motion (it was full on new looking fluid)

 

Plans:

engine tuned up and new carb

new fluids everywhere etc. 

get seats covered and customer dash cover made 

repair a/c and convert to r134a 

New brakes etc 

rebuild auto trans (shift kit for fun driving)

 

the only thing is I need to source transmission parts. These ol zf3hp were put in a lot of cars over the years so there has to be support for them. The googles didn’t produce very many promising results. Where do I look? I’m ok with international purchases for parts etc. is there a zf3hp guru out there?  

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You would think that there would be a supply of parts for the zf3hp given the number of brands that used them but the parts a very hard to come by other than gaskets and seals ETC. In the archives there are some threads about what was found and what wasn't, there are also threads about using a auto trans out of newer models of BMW's

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It would be helpful for our discussion for you to post the VIN.  There's a fair amount of detail differences between as '73 and a '75 car, enough so that we may lead you down the wrong path without knowing the car's actual year.  If it's a '73 automatic, the VIN should be between 2533173 and 2534861; if a '75, 2380001-2382692.  

 

As for the tranny, the problem may be nothing more than a misadjusted (or broken) shifter; those automatics are pretty rugged if not abused.  Truth be told, most any competent automatic transmission shop should be able to diagnose the problem so you'll know whether to repair or replace.  And I also suspect there are enough perfectly good 02 automatic trannys laying around after the owner converted to stick that you should be able to find a good used one--or convert your car to a stick.

 

For A/C work, suggest finding Rob Siegel's (the Hack Mechanic) book on air conditioning--he's very knowledgeable on how to update an 02 A/C with more recent bits (rotary compressor, larger parallel flow condenser, etc) to make the conversion to R134 better performing than the old R12 system, despite losing cooling capacity with the refrigerant change.

 

Keep us posted on your progress, and don't be shy about asking questions.  Lotsa expertise here!

 

mike

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Sounds like a fun project. I have a functioning ‘74 auto in my garage (Denver) if you want it.  Worked fine before I pulled it and it had been rebuilt just before I bought the car. Let me know. 
 

Recovering the dash is tricky, make sure to have some very detailed conversations with the upholstery shop. I went that route and even with a ton of direction from me, they still messed it up. I ended up redoing the lower half myself. If I had it to do over again, I’d just do the whole thing myself. Live and learn. 

Edited by Lucky 7
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3 hours ago, Son of Marty said:

You would think that there would be a supply of parts for the zf3hp given the number of brands that used them but the parts a very hard to come by other than gaskets and seals ETC. In the archives there are some threads about what was found and what wasn't, there are also threads about using a auto trans out of newer models of BMW's

Yeah dang that’s what I’m finding. Kinda crazy that is the case. I would like a good functioning trans with a shift kit but I’m coming up with nothing. 

 

3 hours ago, Mike Self said:

It would be helpful for our discussion for you to post the VIN.  There's a fair amount of detail differences between as '73 and a '75 car, enough so that we may lead you down the wrong path without knowing the car's actual year.  If it's a '73 automatic, the VIN should be between 2533173 and 2534861; if a '75, 2380001-2382692.  

 

As for the tranny, the problem may be nothing more than a misadjusted (or broken) shifter; those automatics are pretty rugged if not abused.  Truth be told, most any competent automatic transmission shop should be able to diagnose the problem so you'll know whether to repair or replace.  And I also suspect there are enough perfectly good 02 automatic trannys laying around after the owner converted to stick that you should be able to find a good used one--or convert your car to a stick.

 

For A/C work, suggest finding Rob Siegel's (the Hack Mechanic) book on air conditioning--he's very knowledgeable on how to update an 02 A/C with more recent bits (rotary compressor, larger parallel flow condenser, etc) to make the conversion to R134 better performing than the old R12 system, despite losing cooling capacity with the refrigerant change.

 

Keep us posted on your progress, and don't be shy about asking questions.  Lotsa expertise here!

 

mike

Fantastic information thank you kindly. I will post vin. I own a small repair shop and one of the more common things I repair is ac and do retro fits to r134a. I will make a build thread when I get it all going and link this thread. 

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2 hours ago, Lucky 7 said:

Sounds like a fun project. I have a functioning ‘74 auto in my garage (Denver) if you want it.  Worked fine before I pulled it and it had been rebuilt just before I bought the car. Let me know. 
 

Recovering the dash is tricky, make sure to have some very detailed conversations with the upholstery shop. I went that route and even with a ton of direction from me, they still messed it up. I ended up redoing the lower half myself. If I had it to do over again, I’d just do the whole thing myself. Live and learn. 

I have everything to do a 4 speed swap and I have a line on 5 speed. So it’s possible to do it but I figured an auto for my aging folks wasn’t a bad idea. Will you figure out a price and dm for the auto id be interested in it. 

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@Coinlaundryloser Welcome to the FAQ.  Glad to have you here.  What part of Idaho are you in?  I grew up in Boise (Timberline HS) and my high school best friend owns/runs Don's Supreme Auto.

 

Love what you're doing.  If you do need parts, please feel free to PM me and I have a couple stashes I can sort through.

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1 hour ago, Coinlaundryloser said:

I have everything to do a 4 speed swap and I have a line on 5 speed. So it’s possible to do it but I figured an auto for my aging folks wasn’t a bad idea. Will you figure out a price and dm for the auto id be interested in it. 


Sure thing. Anybody have a thought on what an auto trans is worth?

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The main reason you can't find parts for the 3hp auto transmission is because they were never very popular.

 

You could try adapting a 4hp from an newer car, but that would probably require transmission tunnel modification 

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Yep, parts (other than a few seals) are very rare for the 3HP12. A gent in Canada installed a 4HP22 in his 02, was quite involved. Driveshaft, rear mount, and no speedo drive so you have to convert to an electric drive, and they had their own issues with input shaft seals and shaft wear.

The 3HP12 is tough. Best bet would be to find one pulled for a stick swap, change it out. No 'shift kits' that I am aware of, but using the selector to shift manually will get your mom's thrills up.

Worth a drive to Denver to see Lucky!

 

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On 2/11/2024 at 7:56 PM, AceAndrew said:

@Coinlaundryloser Welcome to the FAQ.  Glad to have you here.  What part of Idaho are you in?  I grew up in Boise (Timberline HS) and my high school best friend owns/runs Don's Supreme Auto.

 

Love what you're doing.  If you do need parts, please feel free to PM me and I have a couple stashes I can sort through.

I’m in Idaho falls. I will for sure let you know if there is anything else I need. I also have a 83 ford crew cab I’m building so I’ll have roll things around to make progress. But I want to get the mechanical side of this 02 sorted before I move onto interior etc. thanks for all the help. 

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On 2/13/2024 at 6:03 AM, OldRoller said:

Yep, parts (other than a few seals) are very rare for the 3HP12. A gent in Canada installed a 4HP22 in his 02, was quite involved. Driveshaft, rear mount, and no speedo drive so you have to convert to an electric drive, and they had their own issues with input shaft seals and shaft wear.

The 3HP12 is tough. Best bet would be to find one pulled for a stick swap, change it out. No 'shift kits' that I am aware of, but using the selector to shift manually will get your mom's thrills up.

Worth a drive to Denver to see Lucky!

 

Good to know. I’ll make the drive if need be but I’m pretty tied down at the moment. New baby (5 days old) shop to run (4 employees) plus I’m remodeling my kitchen (dumb idea but too late now) plus I like to have a good time with cows and other barn yard animals. Anyways ya’ll are awesome. That is such a cool forum. I’m excited to continue on with this build here. 

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16 hours ago, Coinlaundryloser said:

plus I like to have a good time with cows and other barn yard animals. 

Reconsider your phrasing 😉

 

kidding aside, welcome to the forum. I am relatively new here as well, and found it to be great source of information as I went down the path of getting my ‘02 sorted out.
 

your parents sound cool!  Are you sure they won’t miss having a standard transmission? My parents, both in their mid to late 70s, have enjoyed driving my 02 when I let them borrow it. For Mom, if it was going to be hers, I would consider adding power steering before an automatic.  
 

PS – congrats on the new baby!

Edited by HobieDog
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10 hours ago, HobieDog said:

Reconsider your phrasing 😉

 

kidding aside, welcome to the forum. I am relatively new here as well, and found it to be great source of information as I went down the path of getting my ‘02 sorted out.
 

your parents sound cool!  Are you sure they won’t miss having a standard transmission? My parents, both in their mid to late 70s, have enjoyed driving my 02 when I let them borrow it. For Mom, if it was going to be hers, I would consider adding power steering before an automatic.  
 

PS – congrats on the new baby!

Yeah phrasing could be better I’ll admit. 
 

I agree that manuals 99% of the time is ideal even for an aging person. Problem they both have had knee problems in the past and are likely to again. My parents are in fantastic health and are in shape. They take health seriously. So I see them living for another 25+ years. I just want this car to be fun and easy, turn some heads etc. I have the manual swap stuff already so it would be easy to do but I dunno I like the idea of an auto with ac. My daily driver is a 92 dodge 12v it’s an auto and the ac works. I have all the stuff to do a nb5600 swap but to be honest I really like the slushbox auto. It’s just easy. 
 

thank you for the congrats on the baby. My third boy. Happy healthy and safe. 

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