My Duster Adventures

Members Restorations

  1. 75slant6

    75slant6 Well-Known Member

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    I was able to get the template made for the final piece of the transmission mount. Need to swing by the metal shop tomorrow and get another piece of metal to cut it out of. Be tempting to take the template along and have them laser or plasma cut the piece out for me. While I’m ready to have all this fab work/welding done, I’m also enjoying the experience. I know it’s kind of became a tacky statement on social media but I‘ll definitely be able to say majority of this car was “built, not bought”.
    E0FD147D-7C89-4FED-86F0-8ADCF6768D89.jpeg C43F3E58-3659-40E8-A237-8E35DCC7A2D6.jpeg 2026ADA1-CC64-4301-9B42-1353FAE9F900.jpeg

    Parker the fat cat had to jump up and lend a paw as well. Lol
    6ADB5EC4-B834-4F30-B494-9920804E2C28.jpeg 0B3816B9-25E6-4AFA-974E-13CAC6C7973A.jpeg
     
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    • 75slant6

      75slant6 Well-Known Member

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      Made a little progress yesterday. Got The passenger side spindle and caliper brackets installed. My steering rack had been touching the Oil pan with the 1” aluminum spacers, so I had them cut down 1/4” and reinstalled that yesterday, along with the tierod ends and the steering shaft and u-joints.
      E8E85842-44FF-4093-A749-5CFF5E0B8019.jpeg The angles at the top u-joint were a little extreme in this pic so I cut a longer section of shaft and got it at a better angle. Just gotta finish up the transmission mount, then I’ll be able to set the car back down, roll it out of the garage and do some much needed cleaning!
       
    • HemiDenny

      HemiDenny HDK Suspension FABO Gold Member

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      Looking good....so easy a neanderthal can do it.
       
    • 75slant6

      75slant6 Well-Known Member

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      Took me three attempts to get the steering shaft decent and I’m still not 100% happy with it, so I guess I’m on the stupid end of the Neanderthal spectrum!
      :rofl:
       
    • 75slant6

      75slant6 Well-Known Member

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      FINALLY got the transmission mount “done” (need to get it sand blasted and paint it) and got it installed.
      084FF4C0-AE08-4D4F-9A17-B49EE4441101.jpeg 5A1E50E7-081E-4FEC-85D8-70E498809944.jpeg
      I then hung the exhaust onto the headers with one bolt, just to hold them up so I could lower the car. I then set the front end down on the ground and was blown away at how low the front end is! It’s hard to tell in this pic just how low it is, but the fender lip is at 23 3/4”!! DD6DDF5D-4D33-4334-9BA7-33F624186A00.jpeg
      I’m hoping to roll the car outside tomorrow or Saturday, to clean up the garage, as well as get a good all around look of the car and take some better pics. I took a few measurements at different points of the car, here they are.
      23 3/4” to fender lip
      5 3/4” to torsion bar crossmember
      3 7/8“ to header flange
      5” to trans mount
      4 1/2” to bellhousing
      25 1/2” to rear quarter lip
       
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      • 75slant6

        75slant6 Well-Known Member

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        Small update. I rolled the car outside yesterday to get a look at the ride height and to get the garage organized a bit and give the floor a MUCH needed sweeping. As stated in the photo, if I actually get the suspension set as low as it’s mocked up here, I’m going to be in need of new rear springs to get the backend down at least 2, maybe 3 inches.
        B16248B4-E3E4-429C-A638-95A898C3276D.jpeg Then this evening, I started building a set of wooden wheel cribs. I used went off of the design on restocar.com but I modified it a little bit. The guy on restocar made his wheel cribs as “one piece” units that were 10”w x 14”L x 12”H. I made mine 12”w x 18”L x 12”H but I also made them as a “two piece” design. The reason for this: in order to get the car up on the “one piece” wheel cribs, here are the steps needed to get the car up high enough. 1. Jack up the rear and place jack stands under rear axle. 2. Jack up front and place on jack stands. 3. Add a block/spacer to your jack to extend the reach. 4. Jack front end up with the block and place front wheel cribs under wheels. 5. Jack up rear with jack and block and place rear wheel cribs under wheels. Now, my “two piece” design will essentially follow the same steps, just without the jack stands.
        Here’s how they look at full height.
        55326357-6D95-4ACA-9D84-CA8B36C28A8C.jpeg
        here’s the set broke down 1BA3E9FB-9BA0-4726-A504-87C94C6162B4.jpeg
        here’s a shot showing how the two halves fit together. The bottom half is on the right. 3B3423BA-7C6A-4946-BE8E-B3B3F422C22E.jpeg
        And here’s the two halves stacked. 0E254F0A-652F-48B7-A811-653AD01FA6A9.jpeg

        I only had time to get two of them built tonight but so hopefully I can get the others built soon, so I can get the car back in the garage and get it up on the cribs in order to get the subframe connectors installed and get the front suspension buttoned up for good.
         
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        • RustyRatRod

          RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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          Very cool, Caleb! I love how the cross member turned out. It looks very strong! Good job!
           
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          • 75slant6

            75slant6 Well-Known Member

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            Thanks! I’m definitely a lot happier with it than the one I had in it. That crazy thing was almost 12 pounds!! And ugly too! Lol
             
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            • 4.7Light

              4.7Light Well-Known Member

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              Did we make the date you were talking about before the big upgrades came. Curious how much farther have you gotten? Love the fact you don't care about the paint!
               
            • 75slant6

              75slant6 Well-Known Member

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              No, I ended up having a few crucial parts that weren’t in on time. I actually haven’t gotten hardly anything done since then. I NEED to get back on it. My truck broke down so it’d be really nice to have it on the road again.
               
            • MonkeyMadness

              MonkeyMadness Well-Known Member

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              Hey Man that Trans mount turned out Awesome!
              Good Job
               
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              • 75slant6

                75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                Well, the end of June I told my wife “wife! July is Duster month!” So last night I FINALLY worked on my Duster for the first time since March! I got the caster and camber roughed in, not sure yet what I’m gonna work on tonight yet. Maybe subframe connectors? Idk. We’ll see.
                 
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                • 89on35s

                  89on35s Inferno Red Duster FABO Gold Member

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                  Duster month is my favorite month!

                  Cley
                   
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                  • 75slant6

                    75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                    Well, I got one subframe connector mostly welded in, then ran out of wire…. Thinking about getting the other side tacked in after I get more wire, then maybe take it to a shop and have them put it on a lift to finish welding them in.

                    image.jpg
                     
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                    • 75slant6

                      75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                      Long time, little progress. Haven’t been working on the car near as much as I should have been but I did get some more work done on the front suspension. Installed the coilovers last week, then this evening, I set the car down off the wheel cribs and got the ride height mostly set. I wasn’t expecting I was gonna be able to get the car quite this low but as long as the fender and tire don’t try to occupy the same space at the same time, I’m THRILLED to get it this low! Heck, I’m gonna get me a fender lip roller and roll the fender lips as much as I can and maybe see about dropping the front lower yet! Currently I have the center of the front wheel openings set at 23 7/8”. If clearance allows, I might see if I can’t get it down to 23 1/4-23 1/2”!
                      :steering:
                      I did take a bunch of measurements for ground clearance at different points, here’s that list.
                      Header tube 3”
                      Header flange 3.5”
                      Bellhousing 4.5”
                      Oil drain plug 5 1/4”
                      Front Frame rail by angle brace 5 3/8”
                      Front rocker pinch 7 1/4”
                      Fender corner behind tire 8 3/16”
                      Rocker under front corner of door 8 3/8”
                      Frame by spring hanger 7 3/4”
                      Rear of rocker pinch 8 3/4”
                      Rear rocker 9 3/4”
                      Front wheel opening 23 7/8”
                      Rear wheel opening 26 3/4”

                      And now here are pictures.
                      C6B4CE6E-5D71-4E66-A745-D36FFCE8ED39.jpeg 065422D9-7FDC-4C57-9641-FE1BC090CB2A.jpeg 0B710E2C-BE72-4373-80E5-C0065A0CF896.jpeg
                      As can be seen in list of measurements and in this picture ^ the backend needs to come down about 1-1 1/4” and hopefully this next picture will help with that… MP circle track springs, new bushings and new u-bolts. Just waiting on my new two position hangers to come in from Mancini racing. If that doesn’t get it down quite low enough, I’ll add a small drop block as needed, I know I’m going to need to add a few pinion shims anyway as my pinion angle is going the wrong direction.
                      0F2A9A08-51B9-4F97-B012-9C2C28D2466C.jpeg
                      One issue I did discover this evening is that the machined area on the back side of my rotors is a smaller diameter than the outer diameter of my hubs, so the rotors aren’t filling seating on the hubs like they should. I’ll either need to take the hubs off and take them to a machine shop (best fix but most work now) or take the rotors and have them clearanced a little bit (easiest fix for now, but would probably have to do it to all future rotors).

                      470E7C2A-1EFC-411D-B119-6A7129E14E33.jpeg

                      D4528037-B5A4-4FA7-B295-EAADAB606C6F.jpeg

                      BDC0581F-7888-487D-95AA-DCC0D179A78F.jpeg
                       
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                      • RustyRatRod

                        RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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                        Are those US Cartool frame connectors? ......and I hope you told Parker what a big help he was!
                         
                      • 75slant6

                        75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                        No sir, these are home made 2x3 units. If you look in post #297 you can see Trailbeast’s pattern that I went off of to build them. Can’t wait to drive the car and see how much it’s stiffened up!
                        Yeah, Parker gets love and admiration heaped upon him any time he wants it and often times even when he doesn’t!
                        :lol:
                         
                      • moparmat2000

                        moparmat2000 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                        Yup, looking good. Very similar to the homemade 2x3 box subframe connectors I installed in both cars. Clean, and inexpensive. I slotted the rear foot wells for them as well.
                         
                      • racerjoe

                        racerjoe Well-Known Member

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                        Good luck with those leaf springs. Mine didn’t last 10 miles before they flattened out and bent. I detail it in my build thread. You will also want to redrill the center pin forward. The location they come with will push the rear end back and it puts the shocks at an incorrect angle. I ended up trashing mine and went with hotchkis springs.
                         
                      • 75slant6

                        75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                        How long ago was this? I’d heard about metal quality issues a few years ago but hadn’t seen anything recently. Hopefully they got it figured out.
                         
                      • DionR

                        DionR Well-Known Member

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                        I had a similar issue and was able to return them. Been 2.5 years at least now so maybe they have fixed the issue?
                         
                      • 75slant6

                        75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                        I sure hope they have. I’ll get em in next week and see how they turn out. Did you paint yours before you put them in? Half ways debating now about not painting them in case I have to send them back.
                         
                      • DionR

                        DionR Well-Known Member

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                        I did fog some black on them, but I think I kept the sticker clean?

                        Should be able to tell even before you get the shocks on. The front section of the leave spring was deformed in an S shape right from the start and I spend several hours trying to get the bottom shock mount on. I though it was an issue with the Bilstein's I was swapping on at the same time. Later on I figured out that the shock pin was like 20 degrees different from the upper mount. It was horrible.

                        Edit - I should add that I put the car on jack stands under the axle as soon as I had the springs and u-bolts on. With the axle hanging, I doubt I would have had the issues I did with the shock mount.
                         
                      • 75slant6

                        75slant6 Well-Known Member

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                        I’ll have to put em in as-is and see if it all bolts up good, then if all looks good, I’ll pull em and paint em. Still need to pull my transmission mount back out and have it blasted and paint that too. Goal is just to get it running/driving for MoParty in September.
                         
                      • racerjoe

                        racerjoe Well-Known Member

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                        I believe it was mid-2019. I sure hope they fixed the problem. They were terrible and a waste of $$ for me.
                         
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