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Can I Finish a Decade Long Project In 3 Weeks? Maybe...

Thompson

New member
Joined
Sep 18, 2014
Location
Las Vegas
Hey Y'all!

It has been a loooongg while since I have been on the TB forums! But I am so glad to be back!

I started browsing these forums almost a decade ago, I was looking to purchase my first project car and a Turbo Volvo really itched the right scratch for me. I was 16 and wanted something to daily but also tinker with on the weekends and so I dove into reading all the collective knowledge y'all have poured into this forum! With all the knowledge I had gained and waiting for the right car to pop-up for sale, I finally found what I was looking for.

A 1981 Yellow 244! Aptly named Betty Sue (The BTY in the license plate)

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After trailering her home we realized the K-Jet system was a bit complicated and very flogged. So my dad and I decided we wanted to engine swap her with something fuel injected and turbo charged. (Yeah the daily driver thought went out the window quick) So we began digging around our local Pick and Pulls on weekends. We came across an absolute grail!

A 23FT from a 7 series.

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She was greasy and grimy, but fairly low mileage (150k, I think?). It was definitely scrapped for some electrical issue, it had a brand new alternator, starter, distributor, and plug wires.

We were very excited to have such an incredible swap lined-up so we did as much work as possible to make this thing run like new!

-Sent the head to be hot dipped and get new valves and springs
-IDP Turbo Cam and Adjustable Cam Gear
-Every gasket was refreshed
-Rebuilt the turbo charger
-Painted the block back to its bright red glory
-Painted Valve Cover
-Larger turbo drain
-YoshiFab Catch Can
-YoshiFab CAS Adapter
-LS Coils
-Probably more, who remembers at this point
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We painted the engine bay and got the new engine into her new home!

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Things were looking great. We ordered an insane amount of parts and refreshed most of the car.

-IDP Lowering Springs
-Brand New Shocks & Struts
-New Ball Joints
-New Mishimoto Intercooler
-New 5 Panels From the Forums! (shout out to @jfry )
-RX7 Brake Upgrade
-A Getrag Adapted Trans from a fellow T-Bricker in Pheonix
-Many Other Odds and Ends

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All the while my dad and I became obsessed with these nuggets. We found a very clean 1985 245 with a manual in California that my dad was going to make into his project car! But, it ended up being the car I drove through highschool.

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And then I graduated highschool and these two cars sat. For years they sat in my parents garage waiting to be given new life...

And that's where my very ambitious plan begins. I have some time this upcoming Nov/Dec to fly home to Vegas and get one of these cars running to then drive back to the DMV. It is going to be a tight turn around, but I love a challenge. My parents have moved out of their home leaving my brother and other family to rent it out. Every Volvo related thing I own needs to be dealt with before the new year.

So the plan?

-Take the refreshed 23FT from the 244 and put it in the 245, along with all the other upgraded goodies.
-Sell off the yellow shell
-Clean out and sell all of my misc. Volvo parts
-Drive the 245 back home to DC

This is a massive undertaking, but has to get done very soon. I will be enlisting my friends to help with this build but.... none of them are huge car people. So I want to get this thread started now to see if any fellow T-Brickers are interested in helping out with this challenge. The cars are located in the suburbs of Las Vegas. I will have room for folks to crash on couches and air mattresses. I will supply the beers. And will let you take first pick of the mountain of parts that are taking up space in that garage.

Excited to be back on the forum! I will be asking questions and refreshing my knowledge prior to heading home. I will do my best to keep this thread updated prior to heading home and while the build takes place!

TL;DR: I started a project Volvo in highschool, now it needs to be finished in just a matter of a few weeks.
 
Wish you all the best with a big undertaking. You can do it! Although I would suggest finishing the 244 and just keep driving the wagon. That way you have a reliable ride and a cool project car.
 
Wish you all the best with a big undertaking. You can do it! Although I would suggest finishing the 244 and just keep driving the wagon. That way you have a reliable ride and a cool project car.
Thank you! Definitely a big undertaking, but excited for the challenge.

Honestly, that is what I would love to do. But, living in the DMV is pricey and parking sucks. I already have a 2016 GTI and can't imagine parking 3 cars.

Also obligatory pic of the daily!

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It has not been started, I am a bit worried that it has sat so long it may need some TLC. But, luckily we don't have humidity in Vegas so shouldn't have any rust!
Right! Rust should not be an issue. Do you have all the necessary wiring, boxes, exhaust etc for the FT? If yes, go for it! If no, put the FT in the trunk and drive the 245 home with the stock engine, after a full service of course.
 
Right! Rust should not be an issue. Do you have all the necessary wiring, boxes, exhaust etc for the FT? If yes, go for it! If no, put the FT in the trunk and drive the 245 home with the stock engine, after a full service of course.
Throwing the FT in the trunk is not a bad idea...
There are a few things I am missing that I want to buy before I fly home. Probably will buy a MaxxECU Mini (maybe @WillettRun? can give me some advice on this) with the wiring package. Then I will be getting a custom drive shaft made for the Getrag transmission (unless, I can find the back half I have been searching for for years). I won't be touching any of the stock fuse boxes and try to keep the motor a more or less self contained unit.

Think my biggest headache will be figuring out a custom mount and tubing for my intercooler plus fuel stuff. Just need to purchase a few of those things like fuel pump, intercooler piping, etc.

From there hopefully will be smooth sailing (probably not though)
 
Throwing the FT in the trunk is not a bad idea...
There are a few things I am missing that I want to buy before I fly home. Probably will buy a MaxxECU Mini (maybe @WillettRun? can give me some advice on this) with the wiring package. Then I will be getting a custom drive shaft made for the Getrag transmission (unless, I can find the back half I have been searching for for years). I won't be touching any of the stock fuse boxes and try to keep the motor a more or less self contained unit.

Think my biggest headache will be figuring out a custom mount and tubing for my intercooler plus fuel stuff. Just need to purchase a few of those things like fuel pump, intercooler piping, etc.

From there hopefully will be smooth sailing (probably not though)
It´s defenitely a challenge!
 
Nope. But by the end of year, sure.
Ya know this is fair, and might be accurate. But, life unfortunately won't give me until the end of the year. That being said, I will be unemployed the three weeks I am there hopefully that will give me a lot of time!
 
Quick update!

1. I have landed back in Vegas and am ready to take on this project! Lots to do, but feeling confident. Tomorrow I head to the DMV and get it re-registered.

2. My MaxxxECU has arrived. Shout out to @WillettRun? for helping me out and sending one over so quick. I will be hitting you up for some help with wiring in the near future.

3. Have had a bunch of random parts arrive in the mail, will be updating the thread with pictures here soon.

Still looking for help in the Vegas area if anyone wants to come help me for some beer and pizza!

Thanks for all the encouragement and support y'all, excited to really dig into this project!
 
Quick update!

1. I have landed back in Vegas and am ready to take on this project! Lots to do, but feeling confident. Tomorrow I head to the DMV and get it re-registered.

2. My MaxxxECU has arrived. Shout out to @WillettRun? for helping me out and sending one over so quick. I will be hitting you up for some help with wiring in the near future.

3. Have had a bunch of random parts arrive in the mail, will be updating the thread with pictures here soon.

Still looking for help in the Vegas area if anyone wants to come help me for some beer and pizza!

Thanks for all the encouragement and support y'all, excited to really dig into this project!
Cool! Wish I could help you but I´m in Sweden :) Looking forward to see some progress.
 
Good luck, sounds like you have a fun 3 weeks ahead of you and a great pile of parts and cars, I'm very partial to wagons but I'd consider that 244, wish you were based on NJ haha

Did your Dad ever get himself another Volvo after you commandeered his for high school?
 
Afternoon all, I hope everyone is well.

This is "Dad" from the above post, trying to support from a far-off land. @Thompson, you are making great progress; keep it up.

As for the trying to help part.
@WillettRun? now that @Thompson is about to start installing the MaxxEcu Mini. Can you help with a couple of questions?
  • The FT hosts a Yoshifab DSM CAS adapter. Where do you land the crank and cam signal?
    • I assume the Yellow Crank goes to the crank trigger, and the White goes to a DI?
  • The DSM has the 24/2 Hi-Res plate. What function should be used for the initial programming of the home/cam feature?
@WillettRun? - Thanks for your help in advance.



Good luck, sounds like you have a fun 3 weeks ahead of you and a great pile of parts and cars, I'm very partial to wagons but I'd consider that 244, wish you were based on NJ haha

Did your Dad ever get himself another Volvo after you commandeered his for high school?
@NJGreenBudd - No unfortunately, I did not. :(
 
Afternoon all, I hope everyone is well.

This is "Dad" from the above post, trying to support from a far-off land. @Thompson, you are making great progress; keep it up.

As for the trying to help part.
@WillettRun? now that @Thompson is about to start installing the MaxxEcu Mini. Can you help with a couple of questions?
  • The FT hosts a Yoshifab DSM CAS adapter. Where do you land the crank and cam signal?
    • I assume the Yellow Crank goes to the crank trigger, and the White goes to a DI?
  • The DSM has the 24/2 Hi-Res plate. What function should be used for the initial programming of the home/cam feature?
@WillettRun? - Thanks for your help in advance.




@NJGreenBudd - No unfortunately, I did not. :(
Question one: Yes
Question 2: Multitooth+Home, tooth count 24, First tooth angle should? be 151. Paint a white high vis mark at TDC on the front of the pulley (for reference) Check Disable fuel and Lock ignition angle to Zero (or 10, whatever you can find on the pulley). Crank it, and you should have RPM steady. If so, put a timing light on plug #1 and shoot it while cranking. Change tooth #1 angle to make whatever locked ignition angle you selected match up.


if you intend to run sequential, make sure that COP ignition mode is selected and the coils are wired in cylinder number (not firing order).

If you need remote live assistance, holler, and I will login through the internets and fix.
 
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