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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Figured I'd make a project log thread as things are starting to come together finally!

I'll update periodically with pictures.

The engine was bored .020 and has wiseco pistons, freshened and balanced crank.

New oil pump.
New intermediate shaft bearings.
New turbo (stock specs) from TU, with a brand new CHRA instead of refurbished.
ARP head studs.

We have a really good head shop here that went through my head. They helicoiled some buggered threads like the thermostat housing, a couple for the valve cover, etc.

Head was shaved just a tad for flatness.
Also had them put together the 3.3l spring and GM retainer mod for me, and did a beautiful job.

3-angle valve job and new valve guides.

New rockers from FWDP
Fidanza cam sprocket from TU
NOS cam found on eBay

A555 tranny completely gone through by Ed Papp, along with his signature bronze shift pads and a chrome-moly plate added.

These are just the big things, and I'm likely forgetting something ha.

Hoping to have everything together soon!
Pics below, but I have a more complete collection in my Google album here: '89 Lancer Shelby

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Spent some more time out at the shop. Got the turbo mounted and oil/water lines all positioned. Also painting some parts to give it that pizazz.

Hoping to have the engine and tranny mated by the end of the weekend!

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Spent the day cleaning out the engine bay. It's not "perfect", but this isn't going to be sold at Barrett-Jackson 😜

Took about 4 hours. There was no white, nor was the steering rack silver. It was ALL black sludge built up over the last 32 years.

Oh, I also found a lovely nest in my cowl. That was an adventure in and of itself.

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85 New Yorker 2.2 T1, 89 LeBaron Convertible 2.5 T1
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Excellent! I have fond memories of this view... I pulled the block from my white 91 Daytona and thought it would be a good time to deep clean everything, since it was probably a quarter century since it was last washed. It's the point in time where a body is given a new fresh start. Everything looks gorgeous. I'll be eager to watch the progress! (-:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I certainly will! Got caught up with some other life responsibilities, and the weather here in Oregon has been..less than favorable. But this weekend I'm hoping to get the engine installed. We'll see how things go 😁
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Made some more progress! Officially torqued all my pulleys, and installed the flywheel & clutch assembly! Tomorrow I'm hoping to mate the transaxle to the engine, and install everything into the engine bay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Looking good! Those stainless lines are a godsend. Careful not to make it too pretty to enjoy. ;-) Can't wait to see the progress.
The prettier, the more enjoyment! I'm part of a local car group that has cars like Audi R8's, STi's, and the like. I need this old box to be as pretty as possible to keep up 😜
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Was able to mate the transaxle to the engine today and get everything properly torqued, but I ran out of time before a family dinner to install it into the car. Hoping that'll be next weekend now.

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looks good. One thing to free up some hp. Port the water pump housing so it matches the block and is smooth flowing. You can also grind down every other fin on the impeller blade as well. This mod was figured out by Ed Peters who was a chrysler failure analysis engineer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I did some research years back on the water pump mods. From what I found, it was hardly worth the effort on the CB pumps as they were far better flowing than the older design. Since this is my only pump housing I have (don't have a stash of spare parts like most people here), I decided to just clean it up and leave it stock.

As far as the blade mod, I saw some people saying that it wasn't cooling as well at stop-light idles. I could be way off base here, but leaving it as-is seemed my best bet as a city DD.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Haven't been able to work on the project lately due to some life stuff, but made it out to the shop today and installed the engine! Still much to do, but glad that milestone is out of the way.

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
On a side note, engine centering might be interesting. I'll be taking a closer look tomorrow, but it seems like I had to push the engine as far towards the driver side as possible, and also adjust the front mount core support all the way towards the passenger side to make things line up.. My "side" (pulley side) mount and transaxle mount are Anchor aftermarket units from RockAuto, so maybe that's part of it, but we'll see. Anyone who's had similar experience I'm all ears.
 

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Glad you got the engine back in. Looks good! When installing through the top, I always have the transmission bracket/mount uninstalled. Makes for super easy to install then. When getting close to installed in correct position I put two passenger side bolts in barely, then use floor jack to raise tranny side some, install tranny mount, and raise that end into position using floor jack to line up the long tranny mount bolt. Then work on front mount and rear mount.
That rear mount being fixed on the crossmember, should provide you some guidance on where that front mount bracket on core support needs to be. Neither one should really be out of alignment (binding up).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That's the odd thing, it all went in pretty easy as I had a buddy to help line things up, and the bobble strut was perfectly lined up after sliding the engine over and adjusting the core support. It didn't seem to be like that the last time I did an install. Here's a couple pics to show what I was looking at. Again, tomorrow I'll be spending more time on centering and seeing how even the axle compression is on either side.

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Using a Polybushings front mount, I was able to finagle it to be a little more center by using one poly spacer

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Oh, if anybody has an extra yoke screw that connects the two mount brackets together on the passenger side..I'll pay for it. Somehow I lost mine and am just using a random bolt I had as a placeholder. That's what happens when you have an engine apart for a couple years in a shared shop I guess 😒
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Spent some more time at the shop today, was able to center the engine..I think. The Duracrap axle on my passenger side seems far stiffer than the other, and while my 120 pound ass can't seem to compress it nearly as much, the engine appears to be centered.

To be clear, there isn't nearly enough adjustment to be able to make the two axles "even". I'm hoping that it works itself out after driving a bit, but I might have an axle replacement in my future.

On the bright side, I was able to install the water pump, power steering pump, alternator, and all associated brackets/hardware today. Tomorrow I'm going to start focusing on the cooling system and electrical connectors. We're not that far off from firing this thing up, but there's still a decent amount of work ahead of me first.


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