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Road Race Build The 2GNT That Could

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The radiator decided to start leaking tonight. The plastic portion is separating from the aluminum portion. And of course nobody in the entire state of Alabama has one in stock. I filled it with coolant and limped it home. I ordered a radiator and it's a few days or weeks away. I spent a little more cash on this one so hopefully it won't happen again before the radiator reaches 4 years of age. Here's some pictures on the side of the highway and also me tearing it down at the shop to diagnose the issue. I also figured this was a good time to rip out the AC condenser and crash rails.

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Keep at it man been working on mine for 2 years now and I finally got it running. I just went through your whole build from 2019 to now and I'm very impressed glad you never gave up. I wish I would of documented mine. Great job!
 
Unfortunately Mishimoto doesn't make a radiator for the N/T. I had to end up buying an OEM one online. It should be fine since I don't drive the car very much. The car had the original radiator for 20 years before it was replaced. I'd be happy to even get 5 years out of the new one I bought.
 
The car is stored for winter. That isn't going to stop me from ordering parts though. I've already got some stuff on the way and will be waiting until Spring for use. There probably won't be many updates between then and now. Happy holidays, and stay warm.
 
I pulled a valve cover from a '96 Dodge Straus 2.4. Currently a shelf decoration until the machine shop calls me back saying they've got some extra time. I'm getting the characters on the left side shaved off my a mill. The right side is staying, I like the DOHC and it's true of a 420a. Once they're finished I'm either getting it powdercoated or I'll paint it myself. Not sure which direction to go with that yet but I like the idea of doing a custom paint color, possibly with metal flake. Surely it will be ready by the time the weather warms up a bit.

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The input shaft bearing for these cars was recently discontinued. When I heard news of that I started shopping immediately. I only found 1 in stock, and I had to take advantage of it. I may have one of the last new-in-box OEM Mopar input shaft bearings for an NVT-350. I'm not going to put it to use until I feel absolutely necessary, because finding a new one from here out may be a pain!

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I coated the valve cover and got the right sized breather filter for it. I'm still working on figuring out the pcv setup, but as soon as that's figured out it's going on the car. I think the coating turned out great since it's my first time trying this color/texture.

I haven't updated much this year. Been focusing on a lot at once. Still trying to make time for the ole Eclipse though.

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Pretty big updates coming soon.

There's a series of events and a lot of thought that lead to this. But this car will essentially be transformed into a race car. Not just for drag racing but any form of asphalt racing really. I enjoy them all. I've already got the needed parts in mind to get something going here. At a certain point I realized it would never be the quality of show car it once had the potential to be. So my alternative choice is to race the hell out of it.

To those of you that don't know, the car obtained some storm damage a couple months back. Roof damaged in multiple spots (which may not be repairable without cutting and welding a new one), as well as a busted quarter window and cracked rear spoiler. This was one of the many determining factors to strip and race the car. But not fully stripped. I still want it clean.

The build thread will still be updated. But much less of "here's how I made it prettier" and more of "here's how I made it faster". I still want to bring the looks back as much as possible, but it was a seriously depressing moment to see a tree laid across the car.

I've always tried to make a little extra power, but spent plenty of time keeping the looks up to par. At this point I just want to haul ass. If I can get the car painted too that's great. But right now I'm adding some power.
 
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Dude, that sucks about the storm damage. :( Do any of the yards around you sell whole cars? I remember you posted some pics a while back showing some decent looking shells. Could those be of any help for you?
 
Dude, that sucks about the storm damage. :( Do any of the yards around you sell whole cars? I remember you posted some pics a while back showing some decent looking shells. Could those be of any help for you?
I'm just shopping for another Eclipse to buy. It will hopefully be a nicer one. No sense in attempting to repair mine to it's previous condition once again. It's still a complete, running and driving car. Just with some possibly unrepairable damage. Still potential left to be a race car though. I'll fix it up visually as much as I can.

2 Eclipses. One to race and one to drive. Sounds like a dream to me :idontknow:
 
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Hey...that plate looks like the floor pan from the 2 Fast 2 Furious movie. Are you going to paint it green?ROFL
Foot area vs spare wheel cover are 2 very different things.
 
Finally decided to pull the cover off the DSM and turn some wrenches. I've been devoting a lot of my time on the new property and garage I acquired so time has been limited for it.

Long story short, I discovered that I have a bad timing belt tensioner. Which is a surprise with barely any mileage on it. It's to the point where I can slide the belt right off the cam gears. I'm not entirely sure when it failed but I'm thinking it just randomly lost pressure while the car was sitting. It has been over a month since I started the engine. I double checked and the timing is still proper and the belt doesn't look damaged. An odd occurrence for sure but I'm glad I caught this before attempting to start or drive it. I'd hate to damage the new pistons.

Needless to say I've bought a new tensioner. The one that failed was a Beck/Arnley brand. I ordered an Aisin brand since I trust their quality and they have been proven for years. I'm pretty sure that was the OEM manufacturer? I know it was for some of the 4g parts.

I'm not just going to bolt on a new tensioner though. I also ordered one of the blue RPM belts and some new camshaft seals. I'll be double checking the pulleys once the timing system is fully exposed to see if they need replacement as well. They only have the same mileage as the tensioner but I want to make sure it's all in good shape before I put it back together once again.

I've also been throwing around the idea of building a better performing head for a while and figured this was a good time to do so. Once the mounts and timing system are loose, replacement of the head won't be so bad. I have placed an order for some Crower cams and a Brian Crower springs/retainers kit. Still waiting for that arrive and also trying to find a good head to start with. It will be getting some porting and polishing, shaving and a valve job of course. Might get oversized valves.

More updates on this later as well as what I'm doing with the body and suspension setup. It very well may be next year or even the year after before I have the car the way I've dreamed of. Life is too short for me not to get this done soon so I can start properly enjoying it.

A small setback that inspired me to upgrade more.

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I made the switch to a mechanical tensioner years ago. It’s worked out great so far and I find it much easier to work with than the hydraulic grande pin style.
 
Cams arrived and so did the springs and titanium keepers. Now just lacking a head to work with. And valve stem seals, which I think I have some new left overs from the last top end build that I got on accident.

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Currently using that room for parts and receipts storage.
 
The only thing holding me back right now is lack of a head to work with. If anyone knows where I can get a good 420a head, preferably low mileage, definitely contact me! I found one on Ebay for $500, needs rebuild and unknown mileage LOL

I would just try to re-use my head but I know it's probably tired at this point. it's been shaved/decked a few times and I'm not even sure the cam caps are the original matching ones. It worked fine while I used it but at some point the clearances will be out of question. I did get this head from a junkyard after all. And I sold the original head from my car, which of course I'm now regretting LOL
 
Doesn't the belt just lose slack sitting, did you try rotating the engine over and see if it was still slack? I think thats pretty common. I remember because I did the exact same thing as you once and thought the tensioner had failed but after a lot of digging into it, it seems thats normal. I've noticed all my 4G will do that if they sit for a week or longer.
 
Unfortunately, no updates on the engine at all. But I did just place an order for some billet door handles. I am officially tired of snapping the plastic ones. I've been wanting them for a while but just now decided to pull the trigger. I got them from our buddy @b00st3d
Once again guys, use this as a reminder to support our DSM vendors! It's tough for these guys and gals to keep producing parts with a small market!
 
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I finally found a low mileage cylinder head. Today I stopped by the machine shop to get some oversize valves ground in and put some Brian Crower titanium springs & retainers in. I've got it torqued to the block now and am almost ready to put the Crower cams in and get it timed up. I'll hopefully have it running again in the next couple of days. The fuel in the tank is probably 6 months old now so I need to get some fresh fuel in it.


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