Alan Cesar Associate Editor
April 25, 2013 11:50 p.m.

So. I'm at The Mitty today. It's all awesome, I just about had a dayturnal emission when I saw a Ford GT LeMans race car out on the track, blah blah yadda yadda. The Mitty rules. It really does.

And then I saw this little race car. It's a good little race car. A 1983 Mazda GLC, one of about a dozen factory-backed cars from that year, and the last one still in existence. All the engine and transmission components are, of course, unobtainium. But that's not what I'm getting at.

So I'm photographing this car, and the owner obliges to jack the car up for me so I can photograph the suspension, brakes, under-car stuff. I stick my head under the back and I notice a very familiar three-link strut layout. It looks almost identical to the BG-chassis Escorts I worked on and loved for many years.

In a sense, duh, it's a front-drive Mazda. Of course it bears lineage. But until I saw it, I never thought that my favorite (crappy econobox) car had ancestry. Noticing that detail definitely put a smile on my face.

Have you guys had a moment like this? If so, what was it?

crankwalk Reader
April 26, 2013 7:05 a.m.

Realizing the full front and rear Recaros out of an Evo 8 basically bolted in to my 91 Galant Vr4.

ebonyandivory Reader
April 26, 2013 7:24 a.m.

I love this kind of thread, I just wish I had something more to add than this: I found an old Canadian Suzuki SJ410 in the woods at a JY and realized all the windshield fold-down components fit my much later Samurai. Everything just unbolted off and bolted back on mine.

JoeyM MegaDork
April 26, 2013 7:44 a.m.

I was at a car show a few months ago, and saw a Anglia set up like a 1950s-1960s drag car. The grill had a weird angle (the top was tilted backwards quite a bit towards the windshield) and I figured the whole front end was a fiberglass replacement front as many dragsters use......I had to ask, and when I did, it turned out that the grill and fenders were the only anglia parts on the car.

He fabricated the chassis, the hood and engine bay, and the top of the car. (More on that last bit in a second.) The body and the doors were from a vw bug that he cut up and fit to his chassis. The guy was a retired model maker for disney, who had done a lot of foam-core fiberglass models as part of his former career. He used the same technique to finish the car. He started with photos of an anglia, then shaped foam and covered it with fiberglass and kevlar to make the roof and everything above the belt line.

Everything was well executed, seamless, beautiful. I would have missed talking to the guy and learning all about this AMAZING fabrication if I had not noticed the odd angle to the grill shell.

sethmeister4 HalfDork
April 26, 2013 8:13 a.m.

Nothing to add other than to say that those wheels are BEAUTIFUL!

t25torx New Reader
April 26, 2013 8:23 a.m.
crankwalk wrote: Realizing the full front and rear Recaros out of an Evo 8 basically bolted in to my 91 Galant Vr4.

I repalced the seats in my old '85 Nissan 720 with some from a '95 Isuzu Rodeo, bolted right in, no modifications at all.

sethmeister4 HalfDork
April 26, 2013 8:36 a.m.
t25torx wrote:
crankwalk wrote: Realizing the full front and rear Recaros out of an Evo 8 basically bolted in to my 91 Galant Vr4.

I repalced the seats in my old '85 Nissan 720 with some from a '95 Isuzu Rodeo, bolted right in, no modifications at all.

This could come in handy...I'm on the hunt for an old 720!

t25torx New Reader
April 26, 2013 9:43 a.m.
sethmeister4 wrote:
t25torx wrote:
crankwalk wrote: Realizing the full front and rear Recaros out of an Evo 8 basically bolted in to my 91 Galant Vr4.

I repalced the seats in my old '85 Nissan 720 with some from a '95 Isuzu Rodeo, bolted right in, no modifications at all.

This could come in handy...I'm on the hunt for an old 720!

They do raise you up an inch or so over the stock seats, I'm 5"11 and didn't have any head clearance issues, but if your taller you might be scrapping the roof. Oh and if you get a 720, go ahead and invest int he Weber conversion kit, the stock Hitachi carb is junk.

4cylndrfury MegaDork
April 26, 2013 10:05 a.m.

The OEM intake cam for a 1991/92 Nissan SR20 motor offers higher lift and longer duration than that of a 93 on up version. Its a simple drop in affair that adds several more degrees of overlap, bumping output about 7 horses at the wheels to a 99+ Infiniti G20.

Vigo UltraDork
April 26, 2013 10:05 a.m.

Well, im not sure if this is exactly what you mean, but throughout my long experience with FWD dodges and as a mechanic ive been able to piece together all the little connections between where things started and where things ended up before the MB takeover de-railed things.

I mean, starting in the mid-70s with the european Simca stuff leading to the Omni design, and then the Omni design sharing a lot of front suspension design and construction/materials with the k-car design, the early peugeot and VW engines having some inspiration for the dodge 2.2 design, the k-car front suspension being used almost wholesale under the caravan, a modified/improved k-car front suspension being shared with the Neon, the neon rear struts being nearly identical to k-car front struts, the neon head having some lessons learned from the Lotus and Masi 2.2 setups, the LH (intrepid) suspension being an up-scaled neon suspension, the LH v6s sharing top end design with the neon sohc and dohc and the bottom end sharing design with the earlier 3.3/3.8 ohvs, the early 3spd transaxle being obviously a miniaturized 1960s torqueflite and the 4spd guts being substantially the same in nearly every vehicle dodge made, and then the MB takeover and everything was ruined. Then after MB was out, one of the first things chrysler did was the 2nd LX Charger which reminded me a lot of the Charger EXP concept car which was one of the last chrysler concepts before the MB takeover.

It makes me happy to see Dodge et al getting back to something closer to their old selves. They were on a very impressive winning streak throughout the 90s that would have led to a much more interesting 2000s if not for the MB takeover and their almost total stagnation other than pickup trucks and the LX full sizes. But, now that they are on the right track again after a decade off, i cant draw that line of mechanical continuity from the stuff i learned on and grew up with to the stuff that's out now like i used to. My 2006 magnum still used basically the same transmission as my parents' old 1989 Caravan, and the same engine as a 98 intrepid, but those were among the last holdouts from 'old' chrysler. I think id have to look a lot harder to find anything in the current crop that harkens back to what i grew up reading about in magazines.

tuna55 UberDork
April 26, 2013 11:42 a.m.

I was getting a leftover cab support for my truck from a friend who restored a 66. I thought, well, it might be close, it might even fit-ish. They market them as both 67-72 and 60-72. Not a bad production run for one stamping.

Then I get it. I search the part number.

1960-1994

That means that an entire career of an engineer could have always applied this one stamping. That's amazing. Give GM heck all you want for using the same switch on a Corvette as on a Cruze, but using the same stamping for 34 years is brilliant.

vwcorvette Dork
April 26, 2013 4:09 p.m.

I was criticized originally for putting real Recaros from a GLI into my Vette when I picked up an old copy of Vette and right there in color was a C3 with recaros in it! Felt good to know it does make sense!

Dusterbd13 HalfDork
April 26, 2013 4:23 p.m.

my 64 chevelle uses 78 trans am, and late model s10 parts that are almost a bolt on. just amazes me.

also, the interchangability on the s series and 60*v6 stuff is incredible. same with my neon stuff.

interchange and scrounging for stock "upgrades" makes me happy.

ransom UltraDork
April 26, 2013 4:32 p.m.

I originally opened this thread expecting to comment on how the afternoon sun shines on the fir and spruce out back, but I guess that's a different thread.

I've been pleasantly surprised by the BMW parts that played nicely together. Having the spacing and angle of the E30 fuel rail line up with the injector spacing and angle of the E21 stub manifold was nice. Just had to bore the manifold to fit EFI instead of Bosch injectors.

The thing that blew me away most was that the E36 fuel pump and fuel level sending unit dropped right into the 2002's tank and the gas gauge worked

Surprisingly, I never ran into any fueling issues, though I probably always had at least a half-tank going to autocrosses. That setup probably wanted a swirl pot or surge tank or something...

ebonyandivory Reader
April 26, 2013 4:47 p.m.

1/2 ton Chevy 4x4 and the 3/4 & 1 ton drive train bolt-in swap in nice, just use a compatible Spicer u-joint and you're home free. Not to mention body panels and engine/trans swapability.

spnx
spnx Reader
April 26, 2013 8:34 p.m.
4cylndrfury wrote: The OEM intake cam for a 1991/92 Nissan SR20 motor offers higher lift and longer duration than that of a 93 on up version. Its a simple drop in affair that adds several more degrees of overlap, bumping output about 7 horses at the wheels to a 99+ Infiniti G20.

Or a 1995+ 200sx SE-R.

Streetwiseguy UltraDork
April 26, 2013 9:10 p.m.

Chev truck front suspension- From whenever they went to IRS(1960), till at least 1987. Go to the wrecker, find a disc brake, power steering modern front end, cut the rivets that hold it to the frame, remove the drum brake poor angle front end from the 60-70 and bolt that sucker right in there.

Appleseed UltimaDork
April 26, 2013 9:49 p.m.

I noticed a button on my new to me 87 4Runner. Clutch override or something like that. Finally figured out that you can start the truck without disengaging the clutch. Cool.

oldtin UltraDork
April 26, 2013 9:49 p.m.

When I realized disc brakes were a bolt-on affair for dana 44 on an old bronco

yamaha UltraDork
April 26, 2013 10:03 p.m.

When I realized 13" cobra pbr brakes were a bolt in affair on 94+ taurus.......I never expected it to be that easy.

poopshovel UltimaDork
April 26, 2013 10:21 p.m.

Full size van springs are long. fit in everything once cut to size, and are like $5 at the junkyard.

If you don't have a bunch of steel, welder or a saw, you can temporarily fix just about anything structural with a properly sized chunk of wood.

A 2.2L turbo dodge motor actually fits nicely up front in a crx.

I realize none of these things are "lineage" related, but I feel like I should share them with the world.

Oh, beer caps make good washers, and assuming you've got a pair of pliers, a woodruff key.

ebonyandivory Reader
April 27, 2013 9:42 a.m.
yamaha wrote: When I realized 13" cobra pbr brakes were a bolt in affair on 94+ taurus.......I never expected it to be that easy.

Are there any other car-X to 94+ Taurus tricks you know of? I'm intriged because I've been eyeballing Taurus/Sable wagons...

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