1970 Barracuda 440 EFI Conversion

(Using the Holley Commander 950 TBI system)

Originally, I just had a bunch of pics up here, but now I'm including some captions/descriptions too. I may go through these later to make them more descriptive or useful, but they will have to do for now...

Click on any pic to bring up the full sized version. Note: it may take a little while for this page to load, depending on your browser. Its set up as a table, and some browsers wait until the whole table has been loaded before displaying it. Just give it some time. :-)
001.JPG - 76 KB Sun 8/12/01

This is what you get from Holley... Some assembly required. :-)
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002.JPG - 113 KB Sun 8/12/01

This is what you get from Holley... Some assembly required. :-)
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003.JPG - 132 KB Sun 8/12/01

This is what you get from Holley... Some assembly required. :-)
003 - 132 KB
004.JPG - 115 KB Sun 8/12/01

This is what you get from Holley... Some assembly required. :-)
004 - 115 KB
005.JPG - 72 KB Mon 8/13/01

I dropped the exhaust to get at the gas tank and sender.
005 - 72 KB
006.JPG - 66 KB Mon 8/13/01

Removing the pickup tube and sender.
006 - 66 KB
007.JPG - 70 KB Mon 8/13/01

Removing the pickup tube and sender.
007 - 70 KB
008.JPG - 89 KB Mon 8/13/01

The pickup tube and sender. (I will probably need to epoxy a new pickup and return into here...
008 - 89 KB
009.JPG - 82 KB Sat 8/18/01

The exhaust has been dropped in preparation to weld in the O2 sensor bung and install the dual EGT probes.
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010.JPG - 62 KB Sat 8/18/01

The "before" shot
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011.JPG - 78 KB Sat 8/18/01

The Westach EGT instrument and probes. (This is an ultralight/experimental aircraft instrument; I spent less for a dual EGT than most single automotive EGT gauges...) A rare instance where an aircraft part was actually cheaper than the automotive version! One catch though is that the aircraft EGT reads from about 700 degrees up, hopefully they will get hot enough to register. I mounted them as close to the engine as possible, right in the tops of the downtubes. (I didn't want to drill into the factory race manifolds, so the downtubes were as close as I could get. We'll just have to see what happens I guess. If you are interested in getting one of these of your own, I got mine from California Power Systems (www.800-airwolf.com). Go to the catalog and look under "engine instruments".
011 - 78 KB
012.JPG - 58 KB Sat 8/18/01

An EGT probe; you just drill a hole in the exhaust and clamp this in place.
012 - 58 KB
013.JPG - 76 KB Sat 8/18/01

I stuck a couple of strong magnets in the pipe to try to catch stray metal shavings.
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014.JPG - 71 KB Sat 8/18/01

Step one: drill a hole
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015.JPG - 70 KB Sat 8/18/01

Step two: insert the bung
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016.JPG - 67 KB Sat 8/18/01

Step three: weld it up! (Ok, so its not a very pretty weld, but it should do the trick.)
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017.JPG - 61 KB Sat 8/18/01

Drilled a hole for the EGT
017 - 61 KB
018.JPG - 65 KB Sat 8/18/01

Showing how the EGT is mounted
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019.JPG - 67 KB Sat 8/18/01

Showing how the EGT is mounted
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020.JPG - 65 KB Sat 8/18/01

Showing how the EGT is mounted
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021.JPG - 67 KB Sat 8/18/01

Showing how the EGT is mounted
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022.JPG - 86 KB Sat 8/18/01

A "before" engine bay shot
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023.JPG - 86 KB Sat 8/18/01

A "before" engine bay shot
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024.JPG - 90 KB Sat 8/18/01

A "before" engine bay shot
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025.JPG - 84 KB Sat 8/18/01

Eeeeek, a carb! :-O
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026.JPG - 86 KB Sat 8/18/01

Whew, its gone! :-)
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027.JPG - 72 KB Sat 8/18/01

A side by side comparison of the 750 dbl pumper and the TB.
027 - 72 KB
028.JPG - 76 KB Sat 8/18/01

I was hoping to be able to use a monster air cleaner due to the 1.3" shorter TBI, but unfortunately the throttle linkage interferes with the base plate, so the spacer you need to use means you only net maybe 1/2 inch if you're lucky. :-(
028 - 76 KB
029.JPG - 80 KB Sat 8/18/01

A heat spacer; too bad the carb studs provided in the kit are too short to actually be able to use it!
029 - 80 KB
030.JPG - 84 KB Sat 8/18/01

Fits nice; I guess the rest of the engine could use a cleaning!
030 - 84 KB
031.JPG - 92 KB Sat 8/18/01

The throttle and kickdown connection. I got really lucky here; that little rusty piece that was on the Holley fit on the TBI perfectly. The arm was pretty much the same. :-)
031 - 92 KB
032.JPG - 91 KB Sat 8/18/01

Actually got the springs and stuff attached now
032 - 91 KB
034.JPG - 91 KB Tue 8/21/01

Got some of the vacuum lines hooked up
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035.JPG - 90 KB Tue 8/21/01

I rotated the alternator up to get at the fuel pump. (I would have removed the alternator, but the other bolt didn't want to move, so I didn't want to risk breaking it off in the head; I've got too many other things to think about for now!) As you can see, the fuel pump has been removed to make way for a high volume "strip" unit capable of 120gph at about 8psi.
035 - 90 KB
036.JPG - 67 KB Tue 8/21/01

This is the interior (what interior?) :-) I've removed the glovebox and a couple of other pieces to find a good place to mount the ECU.
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037.JPG - 74 KB Tue 8/21/01

This looks like a good place, right above the glovebox. (This is a shot from the floor, looking up into the glovebox cavity.
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038.JPG - 82 KB Tue 8/21/01

Here's a hole that the choke cable is running through. Looks like a good spot to run the wiring harness through the firewall.
038 - 82 KB
039.JPG - 77 KB Tue 8/21/01

First, it needs to be widened to 2 inches. (Yeah, its a bit messy, all I had on hand was a wood hole saw not a metal one, so it wore out part of the way through; I finished the job with some aviation snips, a RotoZip and a file.
039 - 77 KB
040.JPG - 79 KB Tue 8/21/01

This is what it looks like with the gasket installed.
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041.JPG - 74 KB Tue 8/21/01

Time to mount the ECU...
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042.JPG - 48 KB Tue 8/21/01

I marked the holes by holding the ECU in place and using a felt tip marker (ballpoint won't work upside down), then drilled some holes.
042 - 48 KB
043.JPG - 56 KB Tue 8/21/01

The ECU is now mounted with sheet metal screws.
043 - 56 KB
044.JPG - 75 KB Wed 8/22/01

The ECU needs to know the temp of the coolant, unfortunately I have only one sensor bung on the 440. Guess the gauge has to go! Also, Neither the sensor nor the adapter provided by Holley was the right size; time for a trip to the hardware store.
044 - 75 KB
045.JPG - 80 KB Wed 8/22/01

That's better. The sensor and adaptor are mounted with teflon tape. (The sensor provides its own ground, so no need to worry about the tape interfering with the ground.)
045 - 80 KB
046.JPG - 95 KB Wed 8/22/01

Spaghetti, anyone? :-)
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047.JPG - 83 KB Wed 8/22/01

Here I have attached the power and ground wires together, in preparation for putting them in a piece of split loom tubing and running over to the battery. I also bundled the "A/C request" wire in with them. I don't have A/C, but I figured this would keep the wire out of the way and I won't have to cut it, which will be helpful if I ever do install A/C and need it, or if I transfer the system to another vehicle.
047 - 83 KB
048.jpg - 109 KB Thu 8/23/01

"Ka-Ching!" seems an appropriate caption for this pic. :-( Since my stock tank isn't baffled, I need to use a surge tank. A high volume "race" mechanical fuel pump will fill the surge tank and the electric pump provided by Holley in the kit will feed from that. There is also an overflow required from the surge tank and a return line from the TBI. This equals four runs of line from the front to to the back of the car. Lots of AN fittings, lots of braided stainless hose, and some aluminum hard line. My wallet still hurts! (Those five boxes are some digital gauges, water temp, fuel pressure, and a voltmeter) Oh, and before I forget, what is up with companies selling you a product and then giving you an "install guide" that consists of half a (poorly!) photocopied page? The sheet that came with the carter pump was almost unreadable! I would be embarassed to provide crap like that to a customer! I've never messed with a mechanical fuel pump before in my life, some guidance *would* have been nice. There was also a photocopied sheet with the Aeroquip braided stainless line showing how to install AN fittings. It too, was so poorly photocopied that it was unreadable. Good thing I already know how to do that. HELLO... What are you companies thinking?? It doesn't cost any more to make a GOOD photocopy than it does a BAD one. Get it right, will ya??? (I feel better now...) To give credit where its due, the Nordskog digital gauges and senders each had an instruction sheet which was a crisp, clean photocopy. Plus, the instructions were well written and easily understandable. Kudos, Nordskog!
048 - 109 KB
049.jpg - 67 KB Thu 8/23/01

The Carter high volume pump comes with 1/4" FPT threads; I've installed some AN-6 connectors. (Which was something I somehow overlooked; I forgot to order two additional 1/4" NPT to AN-6 adaptors, which will put the whole fuel system on hold later on as I wait for them to arrive. Of course, this *would* happen over the labor day weekend so that I have to wait an extra day before getting to fire this thing up! Oh well.) :-)
049 - 67 KB
050.jpg - 85 KB Thu 8/23/01

The pump is now installed on the engine, after a short 'net search which taught me that that "stud thingie" which was in the way was actually a pushrod and needed to be pushed up out of the way first. :-)
050 - 85 KB
051.jpg - 56 KB Thu 8/23/01

The MAP sensor needs to be mounted somewhere. I didn't feel like drilling more holes in the car, and I also didn't like the screws provided by Holley for this purpose (too thin) so I whipped up this aluminum bracket from some stock I had in the shop and grabbed a couple of 1/4-20 stainless steel screws I had lying around.
051 - 56 KB
052.jpg - 61 KB Thu 8/23/01

The screws actually thread in from the back of the adaptor, and tapped their own threads in the map sensor. Its not going anywhere.
052 - 61 KB
053.jpg - 101 KB Thu 8/23/01

I chose to mount it on one of the ignition bolts
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054.jpg - 70 KB Thu 8/23/01

Ok, here's the deal with this... The MAP barb on the TB is smaller than the one on the MAP sensor. Holley provides you with a hose maybe a foot and a half long to connect them. I mounted the MAP sensor on the firewall, so I needed a longer hose. Unfortunately, I couldn't find one about the same size, and that was a bit of a problem because any bigger and it wouldn't stay attached to the TB, and any smaller and it wouldn't fit onto the MAP sensor. I found a little vacuum elbow adapter in the "HELP" section of an auto parts store, and bought some smaller hose. I cut the Holley supplied hose, leaving just enough to clear the map sensor bracket, and used the small stuff to run to the TB. This way, both hoses are secure on properly sized barbs.
054 - 70 KB
055.jpg - 93 KB Thu 8/23/01

The MAP sensor is plugged into the harness and the vacuum line is routed too. (I have also plugged in most of the other TB connections.)
055 - 93 KB
056.jpg - 77 KB Sat 8/25/01

This is the one gallon Jaz fuel cell I ordered to be my surge tank. (Shown next to a pen for scale.) Its not cheap at $116, but should be the most hassle-free method. This fuel cell is actually intended for nitrous enrichment; its got two AN-8 outlets, an AN-6 vent and an AN-6 fill connection. (The fill conection has an anti-aeration tube on it, which will be handy to use for the connection from the mechanical fuel pump.) The entire thing is filled with "aviation foam" to reduce sloshing.
056 - 77 KB
057.jpg - 76 KB Sat 8/25/01

I have removed the vent fitting and the check ball setup. I will be using this for the overflow to the main tank.
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058.jpg - 63 KB Sat 8/25/01

I've drilled some additional holes in the check valve enclosure to ensure there won't be a fuel flow restriction which would increase the pressure in the fuel cell. I re-assembled the vent without the check ball. (It will be routed to the main tank, so there's no need for the "anti-spill" device.) I did, however drill the holes such that the ball can still be used, if desired.
058 - 63 KB
059.jpg - 75 KB Sat 8/25/01

This is more or less where I'm going to mount the fuel cell, for now. I've drilled a hole in the floor pan and have run the AN-8 feed line through it.
059 - 75 KB
060.jpg - 65 KB Sat 8/25/01

The AN-8 feed line
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061.jpg - 64 KB Sat 8/25/01

The AN-8 feed line to the right, and the electric fuel pump and the downstream fuel filter just beyond the pump.
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062.jpg - 79 KB Sat 8/25/01

Two more holes have been drilled for the fuel input and overflow. (Both will be AN-6)
062 - 79 KB
063.jpg - 65 KB Sat 8/25/01

A shot under the car of some of the aluminum hard line I've bent up, and the electric fuel pump.
063 - 65 KB
064.jpg - 84 KB Sun 8/26/01

I've removed the throttle body to fix some stripped threads in the intake manifold (grumble, grumble...) and also to replace those brass barbs with AN-6 fittings.
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065.jpg - 86 KB Sun 8/26/01

That's better; the braided stainless line will hook right up to those. (1/4" NPT to AN-6 adaptors)
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067.jpg - 71 KB Sun 8/26/01

The Nordskog digital gauges and senders; from left to right, water temp, fuel pressure, voltmeter, fuel pressure sender, water temp sender and adapter.
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068.jpg - 69 KB Sun 8/26/01

The question of course, is since the ECU has taken my only water temp port, how do I hook up the water temp gauge? I just used this CNC machined engine coolant temp adapter, which I originally designed for my Steiger Performance 318 and 360 Magnum MPI intake install kits. I just had to find a gauge that had a sender which was 1/8" NPT. (It wasn't easy, most senders are huge; fortunately the Nordskog was 1/8" and its a really cool digital gauge to boot, AND it matches the Nordskog fuel pressure gauge that I was planning to get anyway.)
068 - 69 KB
069.jpg - 90 KB Sun 8/26/01

The adapter installs in-line in the upper radiator hose. I used a terminal for ground, and a smaller one for the signal, which will be routed into the interior. (I decided to route the ground all the way to the interior in order to provide the sender with the same ground as the gauge to give the most accurate readings.) Note that the gauge will only read correct once the t-stat has opened, but once the engine warms up, its open most of the time anyway. This method has worked well on my Dakota, so I expect it to work here too.
069 - 90 KB
070.jpg - 88 KB Sun 8/26/01

Some fully stainless steel clamps (also from my MPI install kit) and some split loom tubing finish the job. Oh, you may notice the battery is different from some of the earlier shots... I noticed the old battery was leaking coolant, so I swapped in a 1,000 CA (900 CCA) Everstart MAXX. (This is actually the same battery I walked half a mile to Wal-Mart for when the Cuda quit on me in the Wendy's parking lot. Fits great!)
070 - 88 KB
071.jpg - 64 KB Sun 8/26/01

I picked up this pair of lashing straps from Wal-Mart for about $7 which I plan to use to hold the surge tank in place.
071 - 64 KB
072.jpg - 82 KB Mon 8/27/01

Got some 1/8" NPT brass nipples and elbows to hook up the fuel pressure sender. I had to route it out of the way of the throttle linkage.
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073.jpg - 94 KB Mon 8/27/01

Hopefully this will do the trick.
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074.jpg - 81 KB Mon 8/27/01

I plan to make a temporary mounting spot for the new gauges; I decided under the vent levers would be a decent spot; I've already detached the levers, they're hanging...
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075.jpg - 49 KB Mon 8/27/01

The cardboard mockup seems to work; time to transfer it to the sheet metal!
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076.jpg - 49 KB Mon 8/27/01

The sheet metal guage panel is cut and marked up, ready to have the gauge openings cut.
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077.jpg - 82 KB Mon 8/27/01

"Frustration..." Here the panel has had the center holes carefully centerpunched and drilled out, ready for the hole saw. I went out earlier today specifically for a 2" bi-metal hole saw to cut the holes. I get home, and discover that the stupid thing takes a different mandrel than I have. ARGH!!! After searching in vain for ANY tool that it would fit in, I decide to try the wood one, just to see if it will work (its only sheet metal...) It doesn't. At that point, I thought maybe I'd just use the hole saw to "mark a circle" and cut it out with a rotozip. The darn bit broke (AGAIN); they really need to make some metal bits for that thing! It was at this point (AFTER I had made a hole in the perimiter) that I realized I hadn't been using the 2" hole saw, it was a 21/8. ARGH!!! Yes, I am an idiot. Well, its only a temporary panel anyway; I'll go out tomorrow to try to find the right mandrel (grumble, grumble...) and finish the job. That one hole will be messed up a bit, but its only temporary. I plan to build a center console to mount the gauges in eventually. (Which I *really* hope turns out better than this one.) ;-)
077 - 82 KB
078.jpg - 65 KB Wed 8/29/01

Well, I decided to turn this one into a "test panel". :-) I tried a couple of different methods like heat, and a plasma cutter with a template, a plasma cutter freehand, etc. I guess you can tell I was fairly out of ideas at this point. ;-) I figured I'd just go find a piece of aluminum instead. As you can see though, I did finally get it right. The trick is to go nice and slow... I stuck the bi-metal hole saw in my drill press, set it as slow as it would go, and it worked like a charm.
078 - 65 KB
079.jpg - 71 KB Wed 8/29/01

Ahhh, that's more like it! The gauge holes are drilled and I'm getting set to put some heat to it and bend the top. (I don't have a metal brake, so I have to do it the old fashioned way...)
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080.jpg - 70 KB Wed 8/29/01

That'll work.
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081.jpg - 68 KB Wed 8/29/01

I've test fitted it in the car, marked the mounting holes, and drilled them. I'm getting set to cut out the rectangular hole for the vent handles to stick through.
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082.jpg - 67 KB Wed 8/29/01

Heh heh heh! A master with the sheet metal shears, I am not. An air nibbler is on the "list of things to purchase to prevent future constructs from looking like a first grade science project reject".
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083.jpg - 68 KB Wed 8/29/01

The sharp edges and such have been cleaned up with a dremel, and some "bulges" put in to clear the vent levers. I wasn't real concerned with the looks, since this is just a temporary panel.
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084.jpg - 90 KB Wed 8/29/01

Here's what it looks like mounted in the car. "DOH! I forgot to make the edge rounded!"
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085.jpg - 89 KB Wed 8/29/01

Ahhh, that's better. Now if the passenger hits it with their leg, it will only cause severe pain instead of getting blood all over my beautiful interior.
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086.jpg - 78 KB Wed 8/29/01

Here's what it looks like with the gauges mounted. I hooked the voltmeter up to a benchtop power supply just so you can see what it looks like. When the ignition is off, the gauges are plain black; cool stuff. :-) (With the exception of the EGT gauge of course, which is a Westach, not a Nordskog.) From left to right, the dual EGT gauge, fuel pressure, water temp, voltage. Yes, I suppose it does look kind've funny having digital readouts in a car that's 30 years old, but I like 'em. Hey, get your own car and you can put whatever you want in there! ;-)
086 - 78 KB
087.jpg - 70 KB Thu 8/30/01

Time to get this surge tank permanently mounted! Here I'm just holding it in place to visualize how this will work...
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088.jpg - 73 KB Thu 8/30/01

Here, I'm using packing tape (yes, packing tape) to hold the approximately 10 inch long 1/8"x1" metal bars to the surge tank, in preparation to do some quick tack welds. Unfortunately the next pic in the series showing all the strips of metal taped to the tank didn't come out, but I guess you get the idea. I was a bit apprehensive about welding around this plastic tank, and sure enough, it did get hit with some spatter which melted a couple of small "nicks" in it. They were real shallow though, they didn't get anywhere near piercing through the tank. Whew! :-) (Note that I didn't actually weld the thing up around the tank, the tank was only there to hold the metal pieces in position while I tack welded them.)
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089.jpg - 76 KB Thu 8/30/01

I've just tacked all the pieces together and am in the process of removing the packing tape to weld it up.
089 - 76 KB
090.jpg - 71 KB Thu 8/30/01

Fully welded, now we're getting somewhere! After I welded it up, the opening side was just a little too narrow (the surge tank would fit in there but it would have been a really tight fit) so I just put some heat on the welds and spread it apart slightly.
090 - 71 KB
091.jpg - 80 KB Thu 8/30/01

The straps are on now, and I'm just holding it in the car again, trying to visualize how the connection to the car will work. There were a couple of holes in the trunk bracket to the right, which I was hoping to use. (I want to keep the number of holes I drill in the car to a minimum!)
091 - 80 KB
092.jpg - 79 KB Thu 8/30/01

Here's a piece of 1"x1"x1/8" angle which I've drilled a couple of holes in and mounted on the bracket. I then held the surge tank up to it and determined where it needed to be cut.
092 - 79 KB
093.jpg - 80 KB Thu 8/30/01

Fast forward... After a bit of careful positioning and one adjusted tack weld, it was ready to weld up. Ok, so its not exactly a thing of beauty; I'm happy as long as it gets the job done!
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094.jpg - 74 KB Thu 8/30/01

Here's what it looks like mounted in the car. I'll powdercoat it eventually.
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095.jpg - 80 KB Thu 8/30/01

And finally, the surge tank mounted securely in the bracket with the retaining straps. Looks to me like this is going to do the trick.
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095a.jpg - 62 KB Fri 8/31/01

Ok, here's the deal... I was originally planning to just run braided stainless lines for the entire fuel system; nice and simple. I broke out the notepad and designed a system, detailing every part I would need. After this was done, and I could sit back and look at the whole picture, I started to get a bad feeling in the pit of my... wallet. I entered all the parts I needed on Summit's web site, looked at the total and had a coronary. After I recovered, I started to look for ways to reduce the cost. I figured I could save about $100 by using Summit's aluminum 3/8" hard lines for the middle portions of the runs, only using braided stainless at the ends, where flexing was required. After recalculating the total, I had another mild heart attack before biting the wallet and hitting the "submit" button.
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096.jpg - 80 KB Fri 8/31/01

After the parts arrived (as shown in photo 048), I set about installing the fuel system. I got the hard lines bent up, and then decided to check to see how the fittings get installed on them, as I wasn't real sure how the tubing nuts and sleeves were to be used. I knew from a next to useless "plumb your own fuel line" article on Summit's web page that they had to be flared at some point, but was this after the nut and/or sleeve had been installed? Before? For some reason, Summit did not feel the need to include instructions, and neither did Aeroquip. Probably just as well, they would have been unreadable photocopied sheets anyway! (No, I'm not bitter...) ;-) Anyway, I decide to do a 'net search, and after a while, stumble across many references saying that AN fittings require a 37 degree flare, not the standard 45! It was really nice of Summit to omit this information from their web page and catalog! (Get this, I e-mailed Summit to see if they sold a 37 degree flaring tool, stating the reason I needed one, and the reply basically said "yes, we have one, here's the part number..." The part number was for a 45 degree flare. Argh. Anyway, I wrote them back to inform them about the differences between 37 and 45 degree flares and suggested maybe they should note this info on their web page and perhaps even offer a 37 degree flaring tool (gasp!). So, what's the problem? The problem is a 37 degree flaring tool, commonly known as an aircraft flaring tool (danger Will Robinson! There's that expensive "A" word!) will run you about $100, sometimes even as expensive as $600! (Go search for them on www.aircraftspruce.com if you're feeling particularly brave.).. I checked all the local auto parts stores with loan-a-tool programs, but most of those guys have never even heard of a 37 degree flare, much less have one to loan. I thought about trying to borrow one from an A&P at the local airport, but I don't really know anyone there, and also, what am I going to do every time I want to work on the lines, run to the airport? So, I started looking for a tool. After a lengthy web search, the best price I found was on a Parker Rolo-Flair at Cleaveland Aircraft Tool. $79 plus about $8 shipping. They were a great company to do business with, it was shipped out to me quickly and it is a very high quality tool. (With READABLE directions! Woohoo!) Cleaveland Aircraft Tool's web site is www.cleavelandtool.com. At the time of this writing (August 2001), the flaring tool is located in the "finishing tools" section of their catalog, and the part number is TRF37. The tool is pictured at left along with a standard tubing cutter, a piece of scrap Summit 3/8" aluminum tubing, an AN-6 end, AN-6 flare fitting, AN-6 tube nut, and AN-6 tube sleeve.
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097.jpg - 69 KB Fri 8/31/01

I never did find out how to install AN fittings on a hard line from my previous web search, but I figured it out by studying how they were made and experimenting. In case there is someone else in my situation, I'll describe how to do it, so there will be at least one reference for folks when this gets into the search engines... The nut goes on the tube first, with the threads facing the end of the tube where you are installing the fitting. The tube sleeve goes on next, with the narrow end facing the nut (the nut will lock onto the ridge).
097 - 69 KB
098.jpg - 72 KB Fri 8/31/01

Next, flare the end of the tube with a 37 degree flaring tool.
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099.jpg - 57 KB Fri 8/31/01

The 37 degree flare meshes perfectly with an AN fitting.
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100.jpg - 64 KB Fri 8/31/01

The sleeve is slid down all the way to the flare, and then the nut is slide all the way to the end. Its now ready to screw onto an AN fitting.
100 - 64 KB
101.jpg - 61 KB Fri 8/31/01

Like so... Hey, speaking of AN fittings, what is up with the stupid sizing differences? This has been bugging me for some time. You're supposed to use an aluminum wrench on AN fittings so you don't mar them up too badly. I have a set I got from summit a while back. Problem is, if you're installing an AN-6 fitting onto an AN-6 flare for example, the AN-6 wrench will work on the AN-6 fitting, but not on the AN-6 flare! Not only is it a different size, but its not even a standard AN size! It would have made a lot of sense to just make it the next size up (i.e. AN-8), but noooooo. Basically, this means you must use a standard wrench on the other fitting anyway, eliminating the whole reason for having AN wrenches in the first place. Am I missing something here, or is this REALLY STUPID?!?? I guess its not too surprising though when you consider "AN" stands for "Army-Navy". ("I'm from the government, I'm hear to help you...") :-P Hey, how about some of you manufacturers taking some initiative and putting wrenches into your AN sets which will work on these "stupid fittings" too? Duh.
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102.jpg - 74 KB Fri 8/31/01

Just a pic of a "box-o-AN fittings" and some other tools I was using to install the tube nuts and sleeves onto the hard lines under the car. The round green thing below the blue AN wrench is a Mobil 1 cap with a little Mobil 1 oil in it, the blue thing is an old toothbrush I was using to lubricate the flaring tool. (The cone should be kept well lubed.) The piece of rubber tubing in the box is a 2' section of 3/8" EFI rated fuel hose that I got from a local NAPA. That stuff is EXPENSIVE!!! At around $5.50 per foot, its more than a dollar more expensive than 1,000psi braided stainless tubing! (Why do I get the feeling someone is making a lot of money on that stuff?) Rediculous.
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103.jpg - 68 KB Fri 8/31/01

Now a series of photos showing how to install an AN fitting on braided stainless line. I actually did find a couple of sites out there showing how to do this, but I figured another wouldn't hurt. Aeroquip's instructions are all but unreadable. The first step is to decide where you want to cut the line, then wrap that section in some tape. Aeroquip suggested masking tape, I'm using duct tape and it works fine for me.
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104.jpg - 63 KB Fri 8/31/01

After securing the line in a vise, cut through the tape. I have tried many different techniques for cutting the line such as a cut-off saw, air powered cutoff tool, and a plain ol' hacksaw. The best method by far has been a dremel tool with a cutoff wheel. Unfortunately, you will go through almost one wheel per cut, but it gets the job done with a minimum of fraying. The trick here is to cut the stuff without causing the outer braid to fray, which will make your life miserable. This is the reason for the tape, but the tape won't help one bit if your tool doesn't do a nice clean job. Blow out the line with some compressed air after its been cut, rubber dust will collect in the tube from the cutting operation.
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105.jpg - 64 KB Fri 8/31/01

After the line is cut, remove the tape and insert the hose into the red end of the AN fitting (you have to unscrew it first). I find it easiest to put it in a vise so I can squeeze together the frayed ends of the braid with my fingers and use as much force as possible to shove it down into the hole. Twisting the hose as you go down can help. Push the hose into the fitting until it bottoms out just underneath the threads.
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106.jpg - 63 KB Fri 8/31/01

Next, mark a line around the base of the fitting. This is to ensure that the hose does not get pushed out the bottom of the fitting. After you install the second part, if the line has moved down significantly, you will need to start over. As you may have noticed, I am wearing gloves. This is because you will bleed painfully if you do not. That braid is wicked stuff! Unfortunately I couldn't locate my Mechanix gloves, so I made do with my motorcycle gloves.
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107.jpg - 70 KB Fri 8/31/01

Put the fitting in the vise like so. (The second part of the fitting is sitting on top of the vise, and it will go into the hose just the way its oriented in the picture.) You will need to push up on the hose with one hand, while screwing the fittings together with the other. (This is to prevent the fitting from pushing the hose out the bottom as you tighten. You will know if this has happened by referring to the line you drew earlier.) Some lubricant on the "pointed" fitting will help.
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108.jpg - 69 KB Fri 8/31/01

Here's the fitting, all assembled. You will need to tighten the fitting down until the gap is smaller than a certain width. Unfortunately I don't know what that width is because Aeroquip's stupid, worthless directions are unreadable. The fittings tightened down all the way for me though, so that wasn't really an issue.
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109.jpg - 68 KB Fri 8/31/01

The finished product is pretty darn cool looking. And expensive. And a pain in the butt to assemble. But, its a quality fitting which can be disconnected and re-assembled repeatedly.
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110.jpg - 101 KB Sat 9/01/01

Here's a shot of the fuel feed and return line attached to the TB. No Spectre poseur stuff here! :-)
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110a.jpg - 78 KB Sat 9/01/01

This is the Carter "strip" high volume mechanical fuel pump, plumbed with AN fittings and braided stainless. You can also see where an aluminum hard line connects to the braided stainless outlet hose. The hose attached to the inlet wraps around the front of the car and connects to aluminum hard line on the left side of the engine (where it then runs along the left side of the car back to the stock pickup).
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111.jpg - 64 KB Sat 9/01/01

Time to add a return line back to the tank. I decided to drill a hole in the stock pickup and epoxy in a section of the Summit aluminum 3/8" fuel line to act as the pickup. I'm going to try using the stock pickup for the run to the mechanical fuel pump. Holley recommends that 3/8" lines be used, and the stock pickup is only 5/16", but I may be OK seeing as how I am using a surge tank. If not, I will be sure to leave room to drill another hole to use as an additional pickup.
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112.jpg - 70 KB Sat 9/01/01

After carefully centerpunching a spot on the stock pickup plate, I drilled a small pilot hole and worked my way up to a 3/8" hole.
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113.jpg - 78 KB Sun 9/02/01

I bent up a piece of the Summit 3/8" aluminum hard line, put a 90 degree bend in it, and double flared one end, then used gas tank and radiator epoxy to secure it in place.
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114.jpg - 79 KB Sun 9/02/01

Another angle of the previous pic.
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115.jpg - 69 KB Sun 9/02/01

I connected a 3/8" line to the return and some 5/16" line to the stock pickup before mounting it back in the tank. I didn't bother to cut the hose yet, so there are a couple feet of hose attached to these ports. I'm waiting for a couple of AN fittings to arrive (I miscalculated my original order...) so I can run the braided stainless up to the tank, then I'll know exactly where to cut these hoses; they'll end up being just long enough to connect to the braided stuff.
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116.jpg - 78 KB Sun 9/02/01

I put the exhaust back up today. Here's something you don't expect to see on a vehicle manufactured three decades ago... an O2 sensor. :-) The hose clamp just above the sensor and the silver wire running just behind the leftmost exhaust flange bolt is the EGT probe. (The probe itself is mounted out of sight, on the other side of the pipe. There is another probe identical to this one in the other downtube.)
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117.jpg - 73 KB Tue 9/04/01

Any places where the hard or braided stainless lines contact something, I wrapped them in a piece of rubber like so. This particular line is the surge tank inlet, which rests against the trunk lid bracket.
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118.jpg - 99 KB Wed 9/05/01

Woohoo! The Summit order arrived; work can commence! Just a couple of AN to NPT fittings I needed along with 6' more AN-6 line and a 14x3" K&N air filter to replace the paper one that's on the engine now. Oh, I also ordered a 0-15psi Summit fuel pressure gauge for my return line.
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119.jpg - 97 KB Wed 9/05/01

A couple of 1.5" 1/8" NPT brass pipe nipples and a 45 degree elbow from the hardware store allowed me to mount the gauge so its visible with the air cleaner on, yet clears the neighboring vacuum hoses and wires.
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120.jpg - 93 KB Wed 9/05/01

Here's a shot of the gauge with the air cleaner on. It looks like its touching the air cleaner in this pic, but its really not. This gauge shows the pressure of the return line to the tank, which is supposed to be 0-3psi, so a carbeurated 0-15psi gauge should work fine. This is the liquid filled model. According to the Holley manual, you actually only need the fuel pressure gauge installed for the initial tuning to be sure everything is OK with the fuel system, but I figured as long as I had to buy one anyway, I might as well mount it permanently, and have the benefit of one more data point in the future if I need to diagnose a fuel problem. A side benefit of this 0-15psi gauge is it may even fool the uninitiated into thinking that this motor has a plain ol' carb. :-) (Ok, they'd have to overlook the split loom tubing and all the wires, but still...) Speaking of being observant, some of you may be thinking, "Hey, that sure doesn't look like a brand new K&N filter!" You're right. The filter was a bit too big for the air cleaner that was on this engine. Fortunately, I have the same filter on my Dak, but that one has shrunk a little bit due to heat. It fits fine here, and the new filter fits fine in the Dak's air cleaner assembly.
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121.jpg - 67 KB Wed 9/05/01

This is another "I am an idiot!" moment. I'm about to hook up the lines to the stock fuel tank, when I realize I have three lines to hook up but only have two ports in the pickup! ARGH! Time to drop the exhaust and pull the pickup. Fortunately just unbolting the rear hangers gave me enough play to get the pickup out, I didn't have to unbolt the downtubes. When I pulled the pickup out, I noticed that the tube I epoxied in earlier was loose. DARNIT! "Hardens like steel", my butt! sigh... This is a pic of the epoxy after I (easily) just pulled the pickup out.
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122.jpg - 65 KB Wed 9/05/01

I needed to add another return tube no matter what, so I drilled another hole...
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123.jpg - 76 KB Wed 9/05/01

...and fabbed up another tube.
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124.jpg - 71 KB Wed 9/05/01

Here is the solution I came up with, such as it is... I cut up a couple of small pieces of fuel line and clamped them in place on either side of the pickup to create a moderately strong physical connection, and I used the epoxy around the hole to actually seal things up. HOPEFULLY this will work, though I'm not entirely satisfied with this solution.
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125.jpg - 64 KB Wed 9/05/01

Another view of the previous pic. I'll keep a close eye on this when I fill up and if I get some leaks, I think I may try some sort of "bulkhead" connectors. Surely there must be some sort of "screw together" fitting out there designed to pass fluids through a bulkhead or plate. The trick will be finding ones that are small enough. (No bigger than the OD of 3/8" fuel line, but with an ID of about 3/8".)
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126.jpg - 57 KB Wed 9/05/01

Here's what this monstrosity looks like installed in the tank. Yep, I realize I forgot to hook up the fuel level sender. (I noticed it when copying this pic to the web site, actually, and went back and attached it.) So, I guess this site has helped at least one person, anyway! ;-)
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127.jpg - 69 KB Thu 9/06/01

Whew! Finally, I am at a point where I can try firing it up! I installed the software, and did several tests with the key in the "on" position, as well as some preliminary software configuration.
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128.jpg - 68 KB Thu 9/06/01

Boy, I sure hope I don't need this! Better safe than sorry though... I flushed out the surge tank, then re-installed it and filled it with gas. I turned the key to the "on" position a few times until the correct fuel pressure started to register. One nice thing about this electric pump is you can tell when its sucking air by the change in the sound. After carefully checking everything over, I climbed into the driver's seat and turned the key to "start". It turned over, but didn't really want to start. I'll spare you all the iterations of "play with the fuel table, try to start, rinse and repeat". I discovered that if I gave it some throttle, it would start but run rough. The Holley book said if the engine doesn't start, it probably needs more fuel at startup. After playing with it a bit, I didn't think so. Seemed plenty rich to me, maybe its not getting enough air... I discovered that the IAC motor was wide open and I still had to give it some throttle to keep it running, so I opened up the throttle blades a bit with the set screw. Problem solved! Now it idled without any throttle input from me. As it was running (and spewing smoke out the back), I kept decreasing the fuel right across the board, and the idle settled down pretty nice. I did have one scare, as the engine was idling, smoke started to come up from under the car! I think I may have set some sort of record for shutting off a vehicle, exiting, and grabbing the fire extinguisher! As it turns out, it was just a leak at the header flange, spewing rich A/F mixture out into the air. (Whew!) The gaskets I got for this weren't *quite* the right size, I will try to find some better ones. I need to get new hardware for the flanges anyway. So, as it sits right now, the car has a nice idle, but I am going to want to play with the fuel a bit still. At least its running. And the startup? Heh! This car now starts faster than anything I have ever driven. You turn the key, and the car fires up INSTANTLY! I'd be surprised if it goes through an entire engine revolution. :-) But, still lots to do. One thing I noticed was I have a leak around one of the AN-8 fittings in the Jaz fuel cell (surge tank). So much for quality control, I guess. :-P I'm going to have to pull that apart and see what the deal is there. Also, the surge tank doesn't appear to be filling fast enough, thus the car runs out of fuel when the surge tank empties. I haven't even played with it yet to figure out why. Still lots of things to do, but I am definitely getting there! :-)
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129.jpg - 88 KB Sat 9/08/01

Yep, we've definitely got a problem here. The electric fuel pump is emptying the surge tank faster than the mechanical pump is filling it. I took the mechanical pump off the engine and took it apart so I could put it back together and be sure the diaphram was fully flexed. Everything checked out OK there, so I reinstalled it, but still not enough fuel. It was about this time I got to thinking that perhaps the 120gph rating was at some RPM other than idle. :-) I didn't think of it at the time (having zero experience with mechanical fuel pumps) but I guess it would make sense for the pump to put out more at higher rpms, seeing as how it is driven off the cam? So, I have a Summit 140gph (free flow) electric pump on the way, hopefully that will be able to create enough suction to pull the gas out of the tank. I'm going to try to mount it up towards the front of the car, just because I have all the plumbing in already, and I don't feel like messing with it again, possibly damaging the aluminum rigid lines, etc. What you're looking at in the pic to the left is a couple of gas cans, one of them on a scale. I did some crude measurements and calculated that the electric pump was pulling 50gph and the mechanical pushing 42.3gph. Hey, I needed to put a picture of something there! ;-)
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130.jpg - 91 KB Wed 9/12/01

The Summit pump arrived today. Actually, it arrived yesterday, but I didn't get any work done at all; I was glued to the TV in disbelief. Even today I've just been sort've working in a daze; what a day! :-(

The pump says in the instructions that the pump should be as close to the gas tank as possible, that a filter should be used in front of it to prolong its life, and that pumping "up and out" of a tank should be avoided, a gravity feed being preferable. Figures. This information is nowhere to be found in the catalog or web site. :-P I decided to try it anyway. Here, I've hooked it up to test the flow. In the process I noticed that the line from the fuel tank continually siphoned gas out of the tank, so hopefully it will be somewhat like a gravity feed once there is fuel in the lines. The pump did have to run dry for a few seconds until it was able to suck the fuel through, but it worked well. My crude "bathroom scale" measurement puts this pump at 65gph in my application, which should be adequate.
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131.jpg - 84 KB Wed 9/12/01

Finding a location for the thing wasn't easy. I finally decided on the fender, right next to the coil. I drilled a couple of holes, and hogged out the 1/4" holes on the bracket to 5/16", and used 5/16" bolts. (Partly because I didn't really have any adequate 1/4" bolts handy and I didn't feel like going to the hardware store yet again.)
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132.jpg - 80 KB Wed 9/12/01

Time to permanently mount the 3/8" NPT to -6AN adapters.
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133.jpg - 87 KB Wed 9/12/01

We won't be needing this anymore!
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134.jpg - 44 KB Wed 9/12/01

The blockoff included in the Holley kit is a bit thin, and the bolts didn't really want to thread all the way into the block, so I used a nut on each one as a spacer. This pic is attempting to show how the nut plus the blockoff is about the same as the thickness of the fuel pump flange. The flash got a bit overzealous on me though...
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135.jpg - 82 KB Wed 9/12/01

Here's what the blockoff looks like installed on the engine. You can see the electric fuel pump just resting in place at the bottom of the pic; it isn't actually bolted in yet.
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136.jpg - 78 KB Wed 9/12/01

Now it is. I've also installed a 30 amp relay to control the pump, with power coming directly from the battery.
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137.jpg - 90 KB Wed 9/12/01

I got a switch from Radio Shack to control the relay, which in turn, controls the fuel pump, and mounted it in my temporary gauge panel. Unfortunately, I couldn't get it to light up, despite looking up the wiring instructions on radioshack.com. I think the light may be broken. Speaking of broken stuff, I am now getting a loud banging noise at idle. It sounds as if it is coming from the rear of the car, but the only thing that makes sense to me would be perhaps I needed to remove the fuel pump pushrod. I've posted a message to the Mopar Mailing List, but the more I think about it, the more I think I should have removed that pushrod. I'll wait to see what the MML says though.
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138.jpg - 62 KB Wed 9/12/01

Less than a half an hour after I posted my query, I got a response from MMLer Tom Hunsaker. What a great list! :-) Yep, I should have pulled the pushrod. It was pretty simple, didn't even need to move the alternator out of the way again (though that would have made it easier). Pictured at left is the plug that holds the pushrod in and the pushrod itself. You just remove the plug and the pushrod falls right out. I re-installed the plug with some copper RTV on the threads. The banging noise is gone. Thanks, Tom!

I let the engine idle a while and played with the fuel pump, checking out the surge tank, etc. With the Holley pump going and the Summit pump filling the tank, the level rises ever so slowly. I probably couldn't ask for a much better match. I tightened up the leaking connection on the surge tank, and it appears to be OK, so far. (Every single connection on that Jaz fuel cell leaked, and that was without pressure trying to push the gas out! I'll have to keep an eye on it.) I need to remember to put the "aviation foam" back in too...
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139.jpg - 57 KB Mon 9/17/01

I'm just about ready to do some on-road tuning, but I wanted to fix a little electrical problem first. I was getting about 1 volt less than battery voltage inside the car. I wanted to ensure a good source of power to the ECM as well as my gauges and the laptop. I was able to determine that the ignition was responsible for the current draw. Once again, the MML came to the rescue; the consensus there was that this is fairly normal. I decided to add a secondary fuse box to power the "important" stuff. A search through the Jegs and Summit catalog was a bit disheartening; I saw a couple for about $20, a couple more for about $90, and some even more expensive than that. I had decided to create my own "fuse box" by using a bus strip and inline fuses, when I stopped in at my local Autozone and discovered a 4 fuse block for a mere $3.50! Even better, it uses ATO style fuses. Score! :-) This box is pictured to the left.
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140.jpg - 71 KB Mon 9/17/01

I hooked a piece of 12 gauge wire to the "bus" side and made up 4 leads for the other side (16 gauge) with female terminals on the ends.
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141.jpg - 71 KB Mon 9/17/01

The leads all snap into the box, and this is what you get! I inserted a 10 amp fuse for the switched power to the ECM and a 20 amp for the cigarette lighter.
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142.jpg - 86 KB Mon 9/17/01

I used one of the steering column support posts to mount the fuse box. (Sorry about the aim, its hard to point a camera without looking through the viewfinder!) :-)
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143.jpg - 87 KB Mon 9/17/01

Next I needed to get power to the new fuse box. This positive terminal is looking pretty bad; why not replace it at the same time?
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144.jpg - 88 KB Mon 9/17/01

Ahhh, that's better! I'll probably replace the wires one of these days too, but they're fine for now and the design of this terminal will let me do that easily in the future. I added a "terminal tap" to the connector.
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145.jpg - 73 KB Mon 9/17/01

Since I want the new fusebox to be switched on with the ignition, I needed a relay. Unfortunately, the auto parts stores weren't very helpful here. I figured I'd just go out and pick up a relay and a relay socket; simple! Ummmm, not so simple. I couldn't find a place that sold them, and NAPA couldn't even sell me a relay with "X" amps; they are only listed by OEM replacement part numbers, and they can't even look up the amperage! REAL helpful. :-P No wonder those expensive Painless Wiring harnesses are so popular! I left NAPA in a sour mood and headed over to Radio Shack. At least they had a 30 amp relay; no socket though. (I haven't been able to locate a relay bigger than 30 amps...) I decided that 30 amps would be good for now, and decided to just hook terminals directly to the relay itself. The relay and some 10-12 gauge terminals are pictured at left.
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146.jpg - 88 KB Mon 9/17/01

Here's what the relay looks like, all wired up. After this pic was taken, I wrapped some electrical tape around the terminals just to prevent accidental grounding of the hot terminals. This relay just requires +12v to switch on, ground, and of course the main 12v in and out.
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147.jpg - 75 KB Mon 9/17/01

Another pic under the dash, showing the new fuse box and the 30 amp relay wire tied in place.
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148.jpg - 94 KB Mon 9/17/01

Here's the main feed wire to the new fuse box (via the 30 amp relay). I picked up a weather resistant inline fuse holder at Radio Shack, and stuck a 30 amp fuse in there. I should be OK; the 30 amp fuse here should ensure the relay doesn't see any more than 30 amps, and the two circuits in use have 10 and 20 amp fuses for a total of 30 amps. So, how does it work? So far so good! :-) The new fuse box has full battery voltage (minus a couple hundredths of a volt, at most). One circuit is used to power the ECM and my digital gauges, the other is used for the cigarette lighter.
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149.jpg - 89 KB Mon 9/17/01

Rather than mess with the current cigarette lighter wiring, I decided to add a secondary power outlet. This way I'll have a brand new outlet with known good wiring to power my "extra stuff". Plus, I won't have to have the ashtray door open when using it. The most immediate use for this outlet will be a power inverter and my laptop computer, which I will need to dial in and tune the EFI system. Speaking of which, I think I'm finally about ready to do that!! :-) I strapped the surge tank in place, hopefully for the last time, and attached the ground wire. After a final once-over and charging the battery, I should be ready to hit the road!
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150.jpg - 73 KB Mon 10/15/01

Almost a month has passed... I did some initial tuning by driving around with a buddy, and I got the cruise fuel tuned in fairly well, but I wasn't really looking forward to tuning the transient, WOT, and WOT transient fueling on the street. So, I did some looking around and found a "local" place that had experience with tuning EFI on a dyno. I took it to Kennedy's Dyno Tune in North Tonowanda, NY and I'm very happy that I did. Bob Kennedy tuned the car with a wide band O2 sensor, and also gave me some helpful suggestions for things that should be addressed. He was a really great guy to work with, and I would recommend him highly. He has a web site at www.kennedysdynotune.com. The weather hasn't been completely cooperative, but I've been driving around when I can, and the car is doing fairly well. There are definitely some things that still need to be addressed like the startup, etc. but its driving like a real car again. :-)
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This page was last updated Sun Aug 1 01:32:08 EDT 2004