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PseudoSport HalfDork
2/3/14 2:32 p.m.

Behold...our new GRM Challenge vehicle.

It’s a 1982 AMC Sprit DL with a 4.2L inline 6 with 3 speed auto trans and weighs about 2750 lbs according to Google. It does run, drive, and stop but it’s not very good at any one of those right now. After taking some time to admire how awesome it is, we decided to see how wide of a tire we can fit under it. A 295 width tire sticks out a little in the back but with the correct offset it should fit inside the flares. The front was a bigger problem. It sticks out more at the top when the car is on the ground and it hits the bottom of the fenders in the front and back. Since we couldn’t turn the wheel much we have no idea what else it will hit. Front camber curve is terrible too.

Not sure what the plan is for the engine yet. Car has a 4.2L but we have a free Jeep 4.0L. We could mix match parts from both engines to make a 4.5L stroker with no machine work. Either way we are staying with an AMC/Jeep inline 6 then adding a turbo.

FSP_ZX2 Dork
2/3/14 2:33 p.m.

My new favorite thread...looking forward to the progression.

"Chip" Walterman's MCSCC class record holder

bgkast GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/3/14 2:45 p.m.


ClemSparks PowerDork
2/3/14 3:10 p.m.

Oh...this is going to be good.

MrJoshua PowerDork
2/3/14 3:15 p.m.


Billy_Bottle_Caps GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/3/14 3:17 p.m.

AMC project.....sweet

crankwalk GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
2/3/14 5:21 p.m.

The bumpers. They make the car. This is outstanding.

mazdeuce UltraDork
2/3/14 5:33 p.m.

I'm not sure I've seen an AMC with that little rust in........ever. I don't think I've ever seen one that clean looking.

PseudoSport HalfDork
2/3/14 6:01 p.m.

One of the main things we need to figure out is how to correct the front camber curve. As the wheel goes up camber becomes positive. I’ve seen some custom tubular control arms to correct this but they cost more then an entire challenge car. I think we can relocate the upper control arm mounts but I was curious what other people have done.

turboswede GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
2/3/14 6:37 p.m.

One of the GRM'ers here can probably help you model the suspension as it sits and how much relocationg you might need to get a decent camber curve.

Then again, you could always make the suspension so stiff that with some static negative camber you won't get much movement and can get by for the Challenge. Strut-based cars have this very same problem, but there's not much that can be done about it except for upping the spring rate and increasing the negative camber until the tires are perpendicular at full chat through a corner.

FSP_ZX2 Dork
2/3/14 8:35 p.m.

As I recall, the front suspension on this car is almost a carbon copy of a 67 Mustang...find out what works there as a reference.

Also--You can easily lower the front about 1.625-1.75"" by fabbing "lowering plates" which raise the axle on the spindle--use 3/8" steel.

Dropping a Spirit

AMC Mega Suspension mod thread

Burrito Enthusiast
Burrito Enthusiast Reader
2/3/14 8:43 p.m.

I am absolutely digging those stripes, but I am weird like that.

Looks like a fun project!

Dusterbd13 Dork
2/4/14 10:24 a.m.

i built an 80 a couple of years ago. they look really good, and are much lighter, with the ront bumper removed.

we cut a full coil on the front, used prothane bushings, hellwig sway bars, and kyb shocks. ran 235/60/15 on 15x7 chrysler steel wheels, and rarely ever felt the need for more tire. additionally, a 5.0/t5 combo drops in pretty easily and sheds weight.

get rid of the iso-crap on the rear leaves and your life will greatly improve.

needs subframe connectors and a montecarlo style bar.

i forget what steering box we usedm but it was a quicker ratio/better feel than stock.

thats all i can remember off the top of my head.


FSP_ZX2 Dork
2/4/14 10:28 a.m.
Dusterbd13 wrote: i forget what steering box we used but it was a quicker ratio/better feel than stock.

GM (quick ratio) F-Body steering boxes work...AMC used Saginaw parts.

bluej GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/4/14 11:26 a.m.

PLEASE keep it beige 8)

SilverFleet SuperDork
2/4/14 11:35 a.m.

This thing is so damn cool. I cannot wait to play with it. And I've already voiced my opinion on how amazing the stock color scheme is.

tb GRM+ Memberand Reader
2/4/14 11:45 a.m.

Excellent Find! It sounds like exactly what you were looking for.

I have to agree that the stock colors are excellent and they should not be changed up too much. In fact, it would be really cool to see a streetable car in the end because this one would look very cool cruising down the road.

Keep us updated; hopefully I will see you guys in Gainseville.

stan GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
2/7/14 6:54 a.m.

Always liked these, but not sure why...

Will watch with great interest! Have fun.

noddaz GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/7/14 1:03 p.m.


bravenrace MegaDork
2/7/14 1:12 p.m.

I used to race against a pretty hot little Spirit in Solo 1. It had an ex-Penske Trans Am engine in it and mucho chassis work. It pretty much destroyed my street turbo CRX every chance it got, unless it was raining. I still have nightmares...

PseudoSport HalfDork
2/7/14 1:58 p.m.

Electric choke was frozen open so we unhooked it and wedged it closed to get the car to idle close. Dave took it for a quick drive down the street and when he got back there was a strange noise under the hood. It sounded like thick bubbling oil like a tarp pit or something. There were no visible leaks and the engine oil looked clean enough. We followed the noise to the center of the head near the intake and discovered a head bolt was missing and whatever sludge was in the hold was boiling. Over then a few missing or capped vacuum lines everything else looks untouched and all the other head bolts are there.

For the engine we're still talking about taking the crank and rods out of the 4.2L and putting them in a free 4.0L I picked up from Sonic to build a cheap 4.5L stroker. Just trying to budget out new gaskets and bearings. Then add a 60 trim T3/T4 and hopefully build a fuel system to support it. Maybe if we have some budget left we can add a new cam so we can spin it higher then 4500 RPMs.

Oh forgot to mention the car came with some performance modifications

pres589 UltraDork
2/7/14 2:21 p.m.

Ha, I wonder what that sounds like!

The_Jed SuperDork
2/9/14 11:00 a.m.

God, I love that car more than I should!

When did we all get so perverted?

Carroll Shelby mod, cut the fenders, run 295's at all 4 corners with the car whistling through a big huffer and buzzing out of a straight pipe!

Any chance of an exhaust vid?

Samaleshi New Reader
2/27/14 11:08 a.m.

In reply to PseudoSport: Looks like it came with the compensation special shackle kit. Love the Spirits, hit me up if you need any help swapping in the 4.0, the harness work is easy. And, I do love some big wrecking yard Cop brakes, you can see mine in my build thread, I'd donate some design time on that too.

Dusterbd13 Dork
2/27/14 12:04 p.m.

my guy that i built the spirit for decided hes dumping whats left of the shell. its a roller now, so all the fresh suspension is on it. said he wants like 3-400 for the whole thing. if youre interested, lemme know.

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