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Advice about next steps for my 72 coupe

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I bought my 72 e9 after an extensive restoration by the prior owner that was completed in 2009. Horsepower Enterprises in Lancaster PA did the work and dealt with the most critical areas like the rust, interior, trim, electrical systems and rubber seals. But they never did much beyond refreshing mechanics and making sure things worked properly. In the following 12 years I’ve made some improvements to a few areas and in 2011 I was forced to make a choice about the engine when, after an oil change and replacement of the oil filter assembly, the car got oil starved and sustained minor damage. After discussing my dilemma with both Coupe King and La Jolla Import I took their advice that if it was their personal car they would replace the original numbers matching engine and drive train with a more modern engine with a 5 speed. Per their advice I kept the original parts. I’m writing this site about next steps. Specifically I’m interested whether people think I should consider having the suspension brought up to the standards of the rest of the car? I’m thinking of removing everything and cleaning and repainting what’s worth saving and replacing what isn’t worth reusing? I’m not qualified to do this work so I’d be paying to have it done. Thoughts? In my mind it’s the only thing that keeps my coupe from being a solid #2 vehicle. Here’s a link to the restoration so you can see the work done. As stated in the intro paragraphs on Flickr, the car looked pretty solid on the surface be underneath was a rested mess. https://links.flickr.com/u/click?_t=40ac9f0c38d540238d36950e58265982&_m=970759f4dcac4b268fae3a7710a3d541&_e=hQe_S3zXVGNVfXtMq7ruvN0h_Prama_JtOT5Cq2PM5Z_MPNC-InBfgYdsUdOnn4ZCwojywWXBTg9zCx5JJpikCaURFRYnCTKT5f-p2cwpayst0S_Ndk19SXRN4On7lly3S3FEjTZ3XgwnUCz9E9-GPk2bL6MZsPDNwE9a0uRUaMFcOv9XqCmRtRP1ejZe0VwpRrP9BgZ3OFOfpwJG0UeODaeMgA4_8pfsX2BP-HfMI2peCFkPGySPxSYpHY3tPJEmwN26wto0GOp-2COJmK33bVFgsNuf0SbOY9l62qDFjwtIL0jXCbB9cl2iUEmVWL7
 

HB Chris

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You have a CSi, keep it original and rebuild motor if needed. Remove subframes and powdercoat, refresh all bushings, if you keep that huge sway bar at least powdercoat it black, buy lowering springs but keep rest stock. This is from someone with a b35 motor that I love but mine isn’t a CSi.
 

adawil2002

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I'd rebuild the original engine, locate a later head with drilled water jackets from an E28 or E24. I'm currently running an 1986 head. Triple core the radiator & upgrade to a viscous fan clutch. Contact La Jolla Independent for a set of lowering springs, front negative camber plates & big Suspension Techniques sway bars with urethane bushings. Can run Bilstein HDs or Sachs Sports.

Agree with Chris, remove subframes & replace all the bushings, though I prefer paint over powdercoating

Dooley Illust pic.jpg
 

Dick Steinkamp

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It sounds like you have already upgraded the engine and transmission but kept the original parts. I like that move. You have the best of both worlds. A better running/driving car AND the numbers matching parts if that is important to the next buyer...or adds to the value when it's time to sell.

In my opinion there is nothing wrong and everything right with going through the suspension. Clean/detail all parts and replace anything that needs to be replaced. Again, keep any parts that are not replaced with identical ones (the springs, for example, if you lower the car). I'd also lean towards original finishes when you detail. The right color, shade and sheen. Silver or gold cad where original, etc. This may also be important to a future buyer.
 
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Thanks for your thoughtful advice. These cars are so special, I’m trying to be a good steward while still enjoying it. I think I’m going to go for it.
 

Stevehose

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When you rebuild or swap the head, add a Schrick cam to take advantage of your higher compression pistons.
 
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Can someone give me a range for what I should expect to pay to remove the subframes and all brakes and suspension and refurbish or replace what’s needed? I’ve researched the lowering springs ($495) and negative camber ($80) with La Jolla already, and I’m planning on those as well. I realize it’ll be a guess, but I need to broach the subject with my wife (please don’t judge), and I need to be prepared for her first question.
 

adawil2002

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Estimate depends on the hourly charge at your shop of choice, of course. My best estimate based on removal, refurbishment and reinstallation is between $2,500-$3000.
 

sfdon

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I’m going to suggest now is the time to have the rear subframe done by Garagistic in SoCal.
Certainly a reasonable price and with a 45 year old car sitting on lowering springs, it’s invaluable to have rear alignment ability. While the advantage of camber adjustments is clear, more important to me is toe. Unequal or worse, toe-out makes a car a real chore to drive.
 

Bert Poliakoff

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Might look at having your cam re ground by Schneider Cams in San Diego for about $125 plus about another $35 for over size eccebtrics. He did mine and I am happy with it so far. I haven't driven the car yet but at idle and some light free revving the motor sounds awfully healthy They also can make you a new cam for a good bit less than a Schrick
For those of you that know who he is, they do Frank Fahey's cams
 

nosmonkey

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I’m going to suggest now is the time to have the rear subframe done by Garagistic in SoCal.
Certainly a reasonable price and with a 45 year old car sitting on lowering springs, it’s invaluable to have rear alignment ability. While the advantage of camber adjustments is clear, more important to me is toe. Unequal or worse, toe-out makes a car a real chore to drive.
Don I've been looking at the IE adjustment brackets for the subframe to allow for camber and toe adjustment, powerflex also offer a bushing kit with eccentrics which give a +- 1 degree amount of adjustment, with the added benefit of not having to weld anything. I'm wondering if it's worth going for these if that range is good enough, any experience with those?
 

sfdon

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Just the Garagistic unit.
They do the job right and price is good. Plus they powdercoat.
 
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Update to my original post. I’ve decided to invest in several areas suggested by your posts. I finally found a highly recommended shop relatively close to where we live - German Motorwerks in Longwood Florida and I’m going to have them remove and refresh the front and rear subframes, replacing (but keeping) the existing springs with the Carl Nelson lowering package, test and recommend work needed on the replacement 3.5L engine. Finally I’m replacing the tires with the Pirelli CNs recommended on another post I started. Thanks for the advice and encouragement. Cheers
56A7C5BD-1C10-4862-AF18-6A8B0D0D9597.jpeg
 

Honolulu

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Surprisingly, no one has commented that the "good steward" of a car that has an "extensive restoration" is going to restomod it. I guess the mood of the group is changing.
 
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Surprisingly, no one has commented that the "good steward" of a car that has an "extensive restoration" is going to restomod it. I guess the mood of the group is changing.
Actually someone commented I should rebuild the original engine (which I kept) and others have hinted that csi’s should be kept original. I made the choice about 7 years ago because I wanted to maximize the driving experience and I had to either rebuild an oil starved engine or swap it. Sometimes I regret that, but not worth the cost to reverse it when I do enjoy driving it more as it sits.
 
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