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I've never posted a build thread, so here's my ongoing project


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#1 Aman

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 01:03 PM

Warning: Giant picture heavy!

I forgot to take a lot of pictures, but let's start from the bottom. My dad bought this car off the showroom floor with 7 miles (if I remember correctly) in 1987. Driftwood metallic, with maroon interior

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It had fun life until they had to get a bigger car because of children (...my bad haha). After some time in the early 90's, the car sat while they drove their other, larger cars. Also in the early 90's, my dad bought a parts car from a friend who wrecked his, so up until now we've had an engine with 50K miles sitting un-touched in the garage, but I digress: the car sat for years, only being driven on the weekends and occasionally to take me and my brother to school in the "Space-ship car."

In early 2000, probably 2002, my dad and I started sanding the car down because the years of sun beating down on the car killed the paint. You know, little star-shaped cracks in the headlight covers? That kind of stuff. I was 7 or so at the time. We had the whole car sanded down and then primered it, which is how it would look until about 2008 I think.

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Until the sun killed this paint once more. This was a one-step paint job, so it was inevitable that without meticulous maintenance, the paint would die again. And that it did, prompting me to see what matte black would look like, which didn't go so well resulting in its current look.

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As you can see, I only got to the driver fender, front bumper, air dam, hood wasn't even painted, just sanded.

Anyway, I was given the car when I turned 16 in 2011 (GREAT IDEA, DAD.) It was the best day. This is the car I've wanted for as long as I can remember. I didn't really do much to it other than that paint attempt, various experiments with wiring here and there, and plasti-dipping the centers of the wheels. One day I decided to attempt to powerslide though resulting in tearing off the air-dam and denting the h3ll out of the driver front wheel. Luckily, from the aforementioned parts quest, we had and still have an extra set of 7's and 8's, so I just threw another 7 on and bought a Motocam air damn bracket kit which accounted for the torn notches in the dam from ripping it off.

Fast forward to 2014, I finally decided to accept the offer to move to Florida with my parents. I got a decent restaurant job making over 30K a year, and had bought a 2000 Ford Expedition to be a daily driver as I gently slid the Conquest into the category of "project." I didn't have many bills to pay since I only owned one financed vehicle, but I was younger and dumber and awful with money management, which I'm sure has put me on the bad side of quite a few members here in terms of not being able to follow up with payments a few more times than I'd like to admit, but that's an apology I'll make another day, this is a build thread! Over the course of the next few years, (2014-now), I slowly built up my collection of parts, because I knew I wanted a fun, streetable, dependable car. I had a few guidelines for myself though: No swaps. I want this car to be as close to the roots as possible, but I also wanted it to come the way it would have if the engine management was created about 10 years later than it was. So that set the mood for the build: MPI, bigger turbo, had to be a G54B. One fateful night in 2014, I blew the exhaust manifold gasket. That was it. That was the day I decided to take her off the road.

I kind of went all out on the bolt-ons because I wanted to see what a stock bottom end would do, and I contracted Scotty to make the EMS and harness, which I consequently lost my job right before I had to pay for the thing. Nonetheless, I DID come through with that payment, regardless of how bad I felt about how late it was. I had already purchased a NJV head, JDL exhaust manifold, a Holset HX35, and a Maxboost MPI, but while I didn't have the money for the EMS, I went ahead and just bolted a lot of those parts onto the stock 165K mile engine, because not driving this car for two years had been wearing me down. I got a few pulls in around the neighborhood with the stock TBI before I realized the head i purchased had a crack in the #3 exhaust port between the port and the coolant passage in the head, resulting in taking off the JDL and pouring about a pint of coolant out of it. I have videos of all of that, but I'll only post them on request, as the car was a hot mess at that time. Not only that, the turbo compressor housing popped off during a pull one day, and did a number on the compressor wheel.

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The car came off the road again after those few pulls in 2016, because I had finally paid for the EMS. I started working on wiring, getting the rest of my parts like the clutch, flywheel, crank pulley, new turbo, intake parts, etc., all that fun stuff. Here comes the fun part, pictures. Some of this won't be in chronological order, but more so in order of assembly.

Some of you may remember this picture from 2015 or so I think. This was when I started on timing and mocking up for the 50K mile block that sat for years, that would find a new home in my car.

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Maxboost intake mounted

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Edited by Aman, 10 April 2019 - 03:08 PM.






#2 Aman

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 01:03 PM

Yay image limit

JDL mani and (soon to find out) counterfeit HX35 mounted.

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The same top end (NJV head, JDL mani and HX35) mounted on the original 165K mile block when I had that itch to drive it last year.

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Trunk battery cable finagled in

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The aforementioned crack in the exhaust port

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So then the car came back off the road like I said last year.
New GENUINE HX35 came in the mail

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Marking the main relay harness for wiring up to the MS EMS

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And then the 50K mile engine received paint, cold plugs, accessory mounting, and assembly

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I had pulled out the original engine but I'm dumb, so I didn't pull the engine and transmission out all at once as a combo. Had to drop the transmission to get this part done.

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Then came actually wiring the ECU in and routing the harness.

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I finally got everything installed where it should be for the most part

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Could NOT get the thing running after going through the setup process with Scott. Finally after three days of checking over everything from top-to-bottom, front-to-back, I asked him if there was a way to not run sequential spark because I may have the distributor flipped 180 degrees. He told me one setting to change and that was it; the car cranked and ran, and I cried tears of joy. This is what over six years of planning, copious amounts of money, blood, sweat, and tears sounds like, and it PAYS OFF. I flipped the distributor 180 degrees and set it for sequential and it was off to the streets, or so I thought! The brake master cylinder seal decided to give out and the engine sucked all the brake fluid out through the booster. That's ok, I've since gotten the brake master replaced, and I've been driving it for roughly a month. The feeling of finally registering your pride and joy in a new state after all of that is pure ecstasy. The car is obviously still a work in progress, because I need to get a radiator for it, a real exhaust along with wastegate dumps, various things like that here and there. Scott realized my injectors are a little small, and then I realized that since they're Neon SRT-4 stage 2 injectors, they're actually meant to be used in a 58 PSI rail to put out 680cc's, so I raised the pressure today (Saturday, October 28th, 2017) and more tuning will come.

Here's a few videos:
When I couldn't figure out my distributor was 180 degrees
https://www.youtube....h?v=TdX9oQxeQ_M

Had to replace the weeping water pump, went ahead with installing power steering while I was at it
https://www.youtube....h?v=g_DuM7_jp2U

And in this video, I logged the entire drive, which was the log that Scotty would look over and realized my injectors are being overworked. Time stamps in the description if you're like me and just want to see the fun parts.
https://www.youtube....=7fA1LJRgcJ0&t=

#3 scott87star

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 03:31 PM

Those coils are pure sex.  Nice pics.

Edited by scott87star, 28 October 2017 - 03:31 PM.

Now selling true plug and play megasquirt!  Absolutely the best value in stand alone ECU's out there.

I can upgrade your Fuel Injection Pro firmware

Performance Coatings!  Pistons, manifolds, bearings and more!

Now a graduate of EFI University!  www.efi101.com

ECU Vendor link:  http://www.starquest...howtopic=137426

#4 importwarrior

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 08:24 PM

Thatís an amazing machine.

Nice build.

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#5 Aman

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Posted 28 October 2017 - 11:31 PM

View Postscott87star, on 28 October 2017 - 03:31 PM, said:

Those coils are pure sex.  Nice pics.
I've got one man to thank!

Sidenote: was it weird being able to watch the video that the log came from?

View Postimportwarrior, on 28 October 2017 - 08:24 PM, said:

That's an amazing machine.

Nice build.

Thank you! I'm so glad she's in one piece (more or less) after all these years

Edited by Aman, 28 October 2017 - 11:41 PM.


#6 87redcat

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Posted 29 October 2017 - 03:17 AM

Congrats!!! Great thread. What's your dad think of it?
I got blisters on my fingers!!!

#7 Aman

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Posted 29 October 2017 - 10:41 AM

View Post87redcat, on 29 October 2017 - 03:17 AM, said:

Congrats!!! Great thread. What's your dad think of it?

He just got back from a business trip the day before yesterday. He wanted to drive it but I said "Well, it's got a lot of quirks I have to run you through before you drive it." So I took him for a drive. After the ride, I said "So do you wanna drive it?", to which he replied, "Nooooo!"

He then proceeded to post a Facebook status saying "The 1987 Chrysler Conquest is back with a vengeance."

I think he's scared of it

#8 AlrightyThen

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Posted 30 October 2017 - 08:54 AM

Awesome car... that engine bay is beautiful.

#9 DieHARDmitsu.

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Posted 30 October 2017 - 12:30 PM

Took you a minute to build that thing but well done!
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#10 Aman

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Posted 30 October 2017 - 01:10 PM

View PostAlrightyThen, on 30 October 2017 - 08:54 AM, said:

Awesome car... that engine bay is beautiful.

I appreciate that, just don't look at the bay paint itself :lol:

View PostDieHARDmitsu., on 30 October 2017 - 12:30 PM, said:

Took you a minute to build that thing but well done!

This is my first real build, so it's the most rewarding feeling I've ever had. Thank you, let's hope she keeps improving!

#11 AlrightyThen

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 09:53 PM

Anything new with the build?

#12 Aman

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Posted 10 April 2019 - 03:31 PM

Updates! I found the limit of a stock jet-head casting. It's 17.8 PSI from an HX35 on MPI. I've decided to do a swap for now as a head will cost the same as the long block variant I have my eyes on.
Cylinders 2 and 3:
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#13 speedyquest

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Posted 10 April 2019 - 03:54 PM

Are you sure you didn't have any detonation? I ask because if I'm understanding what the picture is of, I believe I see evidence of it. And 17 psi is definitely not a problem for even the stock head from what I know of.

Not trying to naysay, I'd rather bring it up and be wrong than just not say anything.

Edited by speedyquest, 10 April 2019 - 03:55 PM.

1987 Flatty Starion -- Widebody Conversion -- V-Mount Setup --  JDL Tubular Manifold  --  MX-6 Intake -- MS3-Pro -- AEM FPR  --  ARP head studs -- 3" hood exit exhaust -- Hahn Racecraft 16g --  Tial F38 Wastegate -- Tial Q Bov -- Short route piping -- 5 lug & LSD conversion -- Tubular Front End -- Manual Steering Rack Conversion -- Manual Brake Conversion -- Stack Digital Dash -- AEM UEGO -- D2 coilovers -- full GNT poly bushings & mounts -- four 8" rears -- car lightened significantly...  More to come!


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Build Thread --->  http://www.starquest...opic=143564&hl=


#14 Aman

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:06 PM

View Postspeedyquest, on 10 April 2019 - 03:54 PM, said:

Are you sure you didn't have any detonation? I ask because if I'm understanding what the picture is of, I believe I see evidence of it. And 17 psi is definitely not a problem for even the stock head from what I know of.

Not trying to naysay, I'd rather bring it up and be wrong than just not say anything.

I was on a pretty conservating timing table and my fueling was on the generous side to rule out any detonation, but this is also a jet head, and I won't act like my cooling system was the best for how I drove it :)

#15 mbruneaux

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Posted 13 April 2019 - 07:04 PM

That was a very nice set up.
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#16 importwarrior

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 12:12 PM

what Throttle body are you using?

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#17 Aman

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 09:49 PM

View Postmbruneaux, on 13 April 2019 - 07:04 PM, said:

That was a very nice set up.

I appreciate that a lot! It'll be back in the future when I have money to burn and this car turns into a full restoration, but for now, I'm young and dumb and I want to go fast on a budget.

View Postimportwarrior, on 14 April 2019 - 12:12 PM, said:

what Throttle body are you using?

On the MPI intake? I believe it was a Volvo 850 cable-driven throttle body. I think it was a 60mm because I remember a 2.5" couple didn't work exactly right

#18 mbruneaux

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 01:28 PM

View PostAman, on 14 April 2019 - 09:49 PM, said:


On the MPI intake? I believe it was a Volvo 850 cable-driven throttle body. I think it was a 60mm because I remember a 2.5" couple didn't work exactly right

How much modification to make that work?
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#19 Aman

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 11:14 PM

View Postmbruneaux, on 15 April 2019 - 01:28 PM, said:

How much modification to make that work?

I'm not 100% sure myself, as I bought the manifold secondhand. It looked like they simply put a cable-wheel on the existing throttle shaft, and the stock TPS is a pretty standard Bosch style 3-wire that worked perfectly for the Microsquirt

#20 Aman

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Posted Yesterday, 03:41 PM

It's here everyone!
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