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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So here I am as a newb, though this is like my 9th DSM having bought my first 92 GS nt brand new in 1992. I joined Club DSM when I first got internet in 1994 which soon convinced me to trade on a GSX. Back then you couldn't wait for the day's publication of the Talon Digest to see who found something new / faster, when people debated endlessly over whether to cut the air can or pull the restrictor out of the stock boost solenoid. Running high 12s was amazing, 11s was godly, and 11.0 was the unbreakable barrier. Anybody who was on DSM IRC would remember me as John M.



After a few 1g AWDs (and an 89 Mirage turbo, and 91 GVR4 #746) and two Stealth TTs, I went Subaru for a while. I bought an 05 Legacy GT brand new and when it broke a ring land in factory config I had it rebuilt and added an FP Green, FMIC, and supporting mods. That just taught me the hard way that Subarus don't like making 400+ whp reliably and when it spun a bearing I sold it.

So here I am with a DSM again. This one is "Project Cheapskate", to have a fun to drive car that doesn't cost a fortune. I went FWD because of that; it won't eat clutches and I won't destroy something while going for a killer launch. All it should cost me is tires.

I picked up a 91 GST with a 50k-mile old rebuild (apparently just the top end, and with ARP studs) and a huge stack of maintenance records. The receipts show it has a big 16g, unknown upgraded fuel pump, and a CF clutch only 800 miles ago. Clutch master & slave cyls are new. Radiator is new, ball joints & such have been replaced, even the hatch struts are new. It's an "ok" repaint from 12 years ago and was never taken care of so it's crap again. I plan to do most of the prep myself and get Maaco to spray it - lots of success stories on Youtube with that method. I see no reason to pay more for a paint job than I did for the car! The last owner had it painted Indigo Ink, a Toyota/Lexus color, and I like it. It's very close to the stock blue my 92 GSX was. The roof will go back to black as every Eclipse should be.



I bought a parts car, a 93 Talon NT, and it will help convert the front to the 1GB look. I don't dislike popup lights but the other front just looks better to me, and it's easier to buy parts for. I'll end up parting out the rest of the NT later on. Two of my stock wheels are bent so I'll probably run the Talon wheels instead. I don't mind 16s - they just need 225/50 instead of 205/55 on them and I'll be fine.

I've taken a while to learn the current state of the DSM world. It appears that FWDs are SOL when it comes to exhaust options. This car has a custom press-bent 3 inch from the turbo back, and I actually like the way it's totally hidden in the back; just a turn-down is all that's visible. Somewhere along the way I missed the trend of having mufflers aimed out at a 45-degree angle. Is it so hard to aim straight out the back? And why would vendors abandon the FWD items - it's not like it's hard to keep one or two exhaust systems on a shelf somewhere, and why toss the jigs used to make them?

I'm not ashamed to say I'll use an ebay FMIC. I just want more cooling than the stock IC and I'm not shooting for big HP numbers. My car came with Dejon IC pipes and I'm a bit wary of surface rust inside them. For me, IC piping should always be aluminum or stainless.

Right now the car is at 16 psi and it pulls great. The transmission has ZERO issues which was a big reason I said yes to the purchase. I have stock Evo injectors to install and once I adapt the old Palm logger cable that came w/ the car to work with the TMO software I've had for 20 years, I'll start bumping the boost up. I have a Innovate wideband in case I want to get more serious, but again, dropping $1k for the ability to tune the car really isn't in keeping with the budget mission. I haven't pulled the ECU yet to check whether its eprom and to see if there are any capacitor issues.



My biggest surprise? My antique DSM will be sporting an antique TRE MASC, brand new on a shelf since the late 90s! It's in the car now and works great. Once I drop in the Evo injectors I just flip a DIP switch and keep on rocking. Back in the day we tuned w/ an EGT gauge and a SuperAFC with knobs on it :D

As everyone knows, 1st gear is already useless. It will hook if I drop the boost to around 14 psi, so I plan to rig a custom setup that uses one MBC for 1st gear and switches to the other after that. Cheap, easy, effective!

Right now the car's only issue is it won't idle. As soon as it hits "warmed up" status it starts rapidly cycling from 1100-1300 rpm. I've chased leaks for a while and every time I think I'm there, it isn't fixed. Perhaps the injector seals are leaking and of course the new Evo units have new seals w/ them. Otherwise it may be the throttle body -- luckily I see someone here offers a rebuild service and that would be fine with me.

The drive belts squeak (old age and perhaps contamination). The PS pump leaked out the pressure switch (Talon will offer a replacement switch). The AC needs freon but puts out coolish air now. Someone cranked down on the valve cover gasket so it leaks like hell. They used crap-brand gaskets so the thermostat leaked. I fixed that only to discover another leak between the tstat housing and the engine. Great!

I can handle these minor issues and get the cosmetics dialed in. The seats are in great condition as is most of the interior. What isn't good can be sourced from the parts car to make it pretty decent.

Anyway, I don't know what I will be able to contribute here, but here I am!
 

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Welcome!











P.S. Confirmed: Once you are bitten by the DSM bug, there is no getting away! Good luck with your plan to keep it simple and low cost.
 

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Welcome. Looks good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Injectors are in. Test drive felt great - traction through 2nd gear is almost gone - until it started missing under boost. Of course it's a simple issue -- the alternator is dead! The dripping power steering pump slowly puked its contents into it. Looks like the electrical connector that tells the ECU the pump is in use is leaking. Of course it doesn't come with a reman pump; you're supposed to swap it from the old pump. Parts car to the rescue! Any idea if this part is still in production?

I will first try the "lazy" fix of spraying out the alternator with electrical cleaner to see if it will work again. If not, at least it's not a very complicated job. In fact, it looks like it will require about half of the swearing I did during the injector swap as I tried to keep little fiddly seals from getting knocked off while manipulating the rail back into position. It seemed a lot easier 20 years ago!

I heard from Jon @ TRE a few days after making my first post. He got a kick out of hearing that one of those old units is under the hood of a car again. It worked great too - just a flick of the DIP switches and the car was ready for the injectors.
 

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Can't wait to see more pics of your project. Do you have any more info on the TRE MASC? Just for curiosity's sake.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The MASC was a Ford-type MAF sensor designed to plug & play into the stock DSM harness. It was tested by one of the magazines which found a peak gain of around 12 hp but much more under the curve. The plans were for DIP settings for stock, 550, 650, and 750 injectors but they never got past the first two calibrations before the project was shelved.

Oh, and I did pull the ECU. It is an EPROM but not socketed, and the caps are in perfect shape. I assume that means it has been repaired in the past but there are no markings or stickers from any shop.

The MASC:
http://www.teamrip.com/afcMASC.html

My old Stealth: (not too shabby for a downpipe, injectors, and a VPC)
http://moojohn.com/stealth/

Older DSMs: (didn't have many pics back then!)
http://moojohn.com/stealth/oldcars/
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Here's some pics from the 2000 DSM shootout:

http://moojohn.com/dsm/

My brother videoed much of the trip and the pics are screen shots of the video, thus their small size. That was cutting edge technology 15 years ago, and getting the video onto a computer was pure witchcraft :D

Shepard's car ran 10.1x that year - that's how long ago it was! Looks like it has the only known pic of my old GVR4 too:



The trans self-destructed when I was a week into a new job and couldn't afford to get it fixed. It was sold to a guy named Ernie in Beaufort, SC -- no idea where old #746 is today.

Other oldies: I remember when Buschur announced he was quitting his "real" job to focus on DSMs full time, and the time the people from Mallett laughed at his car while testing one of their first Corvettes at Norwalk (they lost :D ). I even gave my road atlas to Tom Stangl at the 1996 shootout so he could find his way back to PA. He had not yet moved to California, and the VFAQ site was still just an idea!
 

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Man, I love these kinds of stories of the past! I so hope that you continue with the campfire stories for us, these are things that will get lost if no one takes the time to let everyone know where the history of these cars lies. Welcome to the site btw, you have warmed the place up with your presence.
 

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Excellent thread, thanks for sharing.

I wasn't able to find too much about your GVR4 on the .org. Unfortunately, the rate at which they're scrapped/parted/"4 door DSM" mentality'd, it'd be hard to say if its still around today. That's not to say its not hiding out somewhere either.

I never knew Tom of VFAQ fame was a Pa local at some point. Aside from hotrodding Priui (Priuses?), does anyone have any idea what happened to him?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Almost 20 years ago , a guy with a Galant VR4 raced Deion Sanders' Lamborghini Diablo down a Texas interstate....

1996 Talon Digest said:
Date: Tue, 23 Jan 1996 13:51:39 -0600 (CST)
From: "Jason D. Crum" <[email protected]>
Subject: Re: Galant vs. Diablo
Message-ID: <#13>
Hey all,
I have been a faithful list reader for quite awhile and I am ashamed to
say that I do not contribute very much. I own a 91 Galant VR-4 (#81).
It is modified with usual goodies (TD-06, SX fuel pump, HKS AIC, gutted
mass air, 3 inch ex., NOS, ect... )Anyway, I have have debated with
posting this for about 2 weeks now because of the fact that this story is
hard to tell without sounding like a total liar. (I would find it hard to
believe if I was reading this!) But here goes. I live in Dallas and my
favorite pastime is beating up on the local streetracers (Easy to find in
Dallas, street racing is huge here.) So while out on a nightly search and
destroy patrol mission my friend Scott Currier (91 talon 12.80'S) calls
and says that on the radio he had heard that Dallas Cowboy Deion Sanders
is at a local club in his car. Deion owns a 94 or 95 Diablo VT. Scott
laughed and said that he went by and saw the car there. Scotts car is
busted and wasnt up for the challenge. I floored the Galant and went to
club. That trip resulted in a ticket enroute. (74/55) But who cares about
a damn ticket when your going to get to run an exotic car like this!!!
Anyway, I show up at 1:40 AM and set up the stake out. At 2:20 Deion came
out and got in the black Diablo and left the club. After running 3 or 4
beautiful girls off the road (who were after him too) in order to stage
up I finally caught up to him on the Dallas Tollway. Great, Just perfect,
now I get to race a 200 mph car on the highway. Nervous, I turn up the
boost too high (though I did not know until later :eek: ) So I pull up and
hop it at Deion. He laughs. Hop it again. and again. And again. (Fellow
VR-4 owners can attest to how hard it is to get a race in the family
sedan sometimes.) Hop again. Deion downshifts and nails it. I hit it.
Oh BTW, my little Blue Buddy is sitting empty in the trunk. Third, then forth
How come the Diablo is at my door still???? Fifth. IM PULLING!!! I am now
screaming at the top of my lungs and staring at disbelief. Deion is also
staring and pointing. I would stare too if a stupid Galant was pulling
away from my $280,000 car at 135 mph. At 145 (the E.T timer has current
M.P.H. feature also) I have 2/3 of a car on Deion. At glance at gauges
reveils a horror story : boost 26 psi AUGGH! EGT : 1750 EEEEEK! I nail the
brakes
and exit. Poor car. At the tollbooth I hear lifters tapping and other bad
noises. To the gas station !! Just as I pull in the oil pressure idiot
light (me being the idiot) comes on. Kill the motor.Great I Probably just
destroyed a motor w/ 3000 miles on it (took out the balance shafts and all!)
I had blown the seal out from between the oil filter and its sealing surface.
I replaced the oil filter and added 4.5 quarts of oil :( . The TD-06 is
now a smoker and I have created new noises in the motor (compression is
still good though). I guess I'll be back in engine *again* soon.
I still had the best time of my life though-
Sorry for the long letter,
Jason
P.S. If this is hard to believe, I understand.
P.P.S. Hope Deion is better on the field than on the street!!
Sure there was lots of debating whether it was true or not but the general consensus was that it really did happen. They ran 13.20s in the quarter which means a 20g'ed VR4 should be able to take even from a roll, at least until it runs out of gear.
 

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More? I love the history lessons.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
*sigh* - I do own a DSM again after all :D

I bought a reman alternator from AutoZone (GVR4 spec for 90 amps) and went to install it. I pulled the one from my NA parts car to use for a core and that took only a few minutes.

Only when I was removing the one from the GST did I remember it has an oil cooler that blocks access to the lower alternator nut. That required removing the oil filter so I could get a wrench on it but no big deal so far. Then I discovered that the rubber coolant line behind it is probably original, and so mushy it's a miracle it hasn't burst yet. Of course it was getting dark so I called it quits. Maybe next weekend! At least its shape is generic enough I can use a matching hose from the parts store rather than ordering from a dealer.

Meanwhile, that means I will be draining the coolant so I guess it's time to fix the Tstat for the 2nd time; never choose a fail-safe Tstat because they bypass too much water for the car to ever reach temp! I may have known that in a previous decade but it slowly slips away over time :D

The Tstat housing is leaking where it connects to the block. I see it is supposed to use gasket md145038. It's cheap enough but I doubt it could be shipped here by this coming weekend. Anybody see a problem with cutting one from gasket material? It's not a complicated pattern after all... Maybe some RTV to go with it?

At least the power steering pump leaks have been fixed! I'm glad I went with a reman alternator rather than using the nasty one from the parts car. It tested good but for all this work I want to see a happy shiny new part in there!
 
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