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80s

Knight Rider – Escape isolation

In this time of global Corona / Covid-19 pandemic, many people are asked to stay at home. You might be busy, you might be scared, you might also be a little bit bored and if you are a car person, just waiting for the day you can enjoy your freedom again and take your car out for a drive and to your next car meeting.

Therefore I’ve made this little montage of some footage we’ve taken over the past year of KITT driving around. For everyone who has to stay at home and misses the freedom of just going for a drive. Hang in there and stay safe everybody!

Converting Firebird taillights to Trans Am

When it comes to converting the rearend of your Firebird to KITT, one of the crucial elements are the taillights. KITT being an 1982 Firebird Trans Am had very specific taillights (covered with a black plexiglas) that from the factory only came on 1982 – 1984 Trans Ams. The subsequent ’85 to ’90 Trans Am had different taillights, but kept the same light chamber partition, thus the wiring for KITT also fits the latter taillight clusters.

Long story short, over the ten years of production, there were several types of taillights and in this following video I’m showing you the different options you have when converting the wiring harness from the standard Firebird taillights from 1985 – 1990 to the Trans Am style from 1982 – 1990. Check it out! 🙂

KITT’s Scanner

The undoubtedly most iconic piece of Knight Rider and maybe even of the 80s is KITT’s wooshing scanner. If there is one thing that cannot miss and must be done right in any KITT replica, it is the scanner. It would definitely be cool if the so called scanner could actually scan its environment, just like KITT did on the show, but unfortunately it’s just a light bar with a trailing effect.

In the following video I’m showing you what type of scanner I’ve chosen for my KITT and how I installed it. Furthermore, I’m giving you an overview of what the current option are and what you should consider before you pick one. Enjoy the video!

KITT Trans Am – New brakes

We’re moving forward with the restoration of my KITT Trans Am, or should I say with the video documentation. This time I’m tackling the braking system; rear drum brakes, front disc brakes – all stock, all new. This might be of interest for you, even if you don’t have a thirdgen Firebird or Camaro, as the principles are pretty much the same for all drum and disc brakes.

It’s all the more relevant for you if you are building a full Knight Rider KITT replica with the respective dashboard and lower console. Why? Find out in the video. 🙂

Where’s KITT..?!

It’s Friday, February 7th, 2020, I’m coming home from work and decide to watch an episode of Knight Rider to wind down from the week, of course. The episode is from the second season and called “Brother’s Keeper”.

Suddenly I realize it’s been over three months since I last drove KITT. Winter really is a sad time of the year in Switzerland if you care about your car and want to protect it from mother nature. 😉 Anyhow, it’s dry and super sunny outside and I decide to finally bring KITT out of hibernation and get the 2020 season started. But where is KITT..?!

Suspension restoration on my KITT Trans Am

On the timeline, the suspension restoration was something that came pretty much just after the basic maintenance of my KITT Trans Am. I have to say, it was also the part that I struggled the most with, at least when it comes to the front suspension. Oh wait..! Did I mention that changing the oil pan gasket on a small block Chevy without pulling the engine was possible and even more challenging than taking out and reinstalling the front suspension unit? Yes, it was, but that’s for a later post.

Anyhow, I went through this and documented it in the following video so that you can learn from it and hopefully get it done quicker and cheaper than I did, as well as stay safe and not get stressed. 🙂

Getting parts for KITT – Part 2 – Knight Rider parts

Getting parts for the restoration of your Firebird is one thing, eventually you want to get some of the Knight Rider specific parts. Look no further, as I’ve put together a list of vendors that you can check out and get different variations of the same type of products.

Getting parts for KITT – Part 1 – Firebird parts

If you’re gonna build your KITT replica, you’re gonna need parts. Some more, some less, depending on the general condition of your Firebird and depending on how far your want to go with the project. This usually correlates with the time and budget you have to get it done. Long story short, I would advise you to start with the mechanical part, the actual restoration of the car before diving into the specific Knight Rider related parts.

Here’s my take on where to find parts to restore your Firebid…and also several other american icons.

Update on KITT & My advice on project cars

Originally I had in mind to dive into all the restoration videos around Christmas. Even though I have made significant progress in KITT since, I was too busy to edit a significant amount of videos. Meanwhile, I opened an Instagram account and started showing the current progress on KITT, which created a bit of a gap between the original presentation of the Firebird and the current status of the car.

Long story short, here is the March 2019 update of KITT. Enjoy the video!

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