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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not to stray off subject but here in Kalispell Montana we have a weekly classified paper called the Mountain Trader. In the Deals on Wheels section for two weeks straight is an ad that says, and I quote, 1969 opel classic car, stored last 5 years, good overall condition, doesn't run, no title, $400 or offer.
Is this something one of us should jump on? My offer might be to charge them only $50 to haul it away...
By the way, the word Opel is pretty unknown around here. Speedway GT is starting to change that though...
Jeff
 

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Jeff;
You might want to find out what model a "Classic 69" is. It could be anything from a GT to a Kadett Wagon, Rallye, Sedan or coupe. Being a 69 model, rules out Mantas and Asconas.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
After dialing the listed phone number several times a day for over a week, finally "Aaron" answered the phone today and knew all about the "classic Opel" for sale. He said the "stored for the last 5 years" was a misprint, the car had been in a barn for fifteen years. It is a Kadette, he says it is in good condition, has the 1.9 engine, automatic trans.
I will go check it out Saturday, it's only about ten miles from my house.
I'm not an Opel expert, in fact I really am still a newbie, what interests me about it is, what parts are usable in Speedway GT?
Would it be the solid lifter/flat piston 1.9? Same differential? Same front suspension? I don't know, but I'll find out and pass along any details.
It sounds like a perfectly good car, would be a shame to cut up for parts but Opels are wicked scarce around here...
 

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Jeff;
If the motor is the original, it will be the solid lifter, 9:1 cr 102hp motor. The drivetrain and suspension are exactly the same, except for the auto trans. The GT had it's shifter linkage on the passenger side of the trans, due to the headlight lever being in too close proximity. All other auto trans, although identical from every aspect, the shifter linkage was on the driver's side of the trans.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks BQS4,
Would the front suspension assembly from the Kadette be identical to the GT? I hope so, it would be awesome to have a spare.
I'm thinking I can get the Kadette in question for $100.
But once I get it and strip out what I need, the rest must disappear instantly, or so my wife will be telling me...
 

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Jeff,

The Kadett and GT front suspensions are virtually the same, except for the cross member. The Kadett has engine mounting brackets welded to the cross member, whereas the GT engine mounts on a separate cross member. But the other parts are interchangeable. Hmm, maybe not the front leaf. The GT and Kadett might have different spring rates. Anyone know for sure? I believe the rear springs are different rates (for sure on the wagons).

Oh, if your GT is a '72 or '73, it will have different lower control arm bushings. They look the same (and are interchangeable), but the later years have a thicker inner metal sleeve (and hence a thinner rubber bushing) to reduce the shimmy inherent in the design.

The differential on the Kadett would be the older "floating axle" style with the axles held in place with circlips inside the differential assembly and roller bearings that ride on the axle shaft, and separate outer axle seals. This compares to the later (post-Sept '70 build date) semi-floating axle with the outer bearing (with integral seal) held on by pressed-on retainer rings. The later differential is more robust. The differential ratios might also be different. I used to have a listing of the different ratios, but it isn't falling to hand at the moment

Many other parts on the Kadett are interchangeable with the GT. The door handles are the same, the pedal assemblies, most rear suspension components. Opel tried its darnedest to keep the GT's cost down by using whatever they could from the Kadett.

It would seem a shame to use the Kadett as a parts car, but it would be better than seeing it crushed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Keith!
I think I better jump on this Kadett, just for the right engine with flat top pistons and mechanical lifters.
I noticed in another forum I was studying that it should have a rear sway bar setup, too.
Too bad it's auto trans...
Spare spindles, A-arms, steering, brakes, axles...
Probably shouldn't pass this one up, how often do you see an Opel in this area, besides, obviously from the garage photos, a couple just north of me?
Keep up the good work!
Jeff
 

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Jeff,

I think only the wagon had the rear sway bar. The one up here last year (a '69 wagon with the 1.9 CIH and a 4-speed) at the local PYP had one. John Warga took the differential (with the sway bar brackets) and the sway bar, but I believe he bought the bigger front and rear bars from OGTS. He also took the engine (which he used, along with his GT's '71 engine) to convert to a 2.3 (or at least it is "in progress"). And he took the pedal assembly (to convert his auto to a Getrag) which bolted right up to the GT.

I took a bunch of parts for Kat (when she was in the Kadett game) and another fellow took the front suspension clip for his '29 Model "A" street rod. It was at my suggestion he took it (he was busy in the middle of the PYP yard trying to figure out how to make a Corvair front clip work, and it looked HOPELESS!). Since then, I have seen a bunch of street rods on eBay with GT front suspension clips. I had helped him a bit with fixing up the clip (and one of the things we did was to use my cutting torch to remove the engine mounting brackets), but he has been pretty quiet lately, so I suspect his project has stalled again.

Good luck, and show us some photos when you "rescue" the Kadett. And watch out for a case of "opelitis". That's why there are now TWO Opels living at my house. First time since Myrna and I both had GT's back in the eighties...
 

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Early/late 1.9 rear ends . . .

kwilford said:
Jeff,

The Kadett and GT front suspensions are virtually the same

. . .

Hmm, maybe not the front leaf. The GT and Kadett might have different spring rates. Anyone know for sure? SAME

. . .

The differential on the Kadett would be the older "floating axle" style with the axles held in place with circlips inside the differential assembly and roller bearings that ride on the axle shaft, and separate outer axle seals. Axle bearings no longer available!

This compares to the later (post-Sept '70 build date) semi-floating axle with the outer bearing (with integral seal) held on by pressed-on retainer rings. The later differential is more robust. The differential ratios might also be different. I used to have a listing of the different ratios, but it isn't falling to hand at the moment

Many other parts on the Kadett are interchangeable with the GT. The door handles are the same, the pedal assemblies, most rear suspension components. Opel tried its darnedest to keep the GT's cost down by using whatever they could from the Kadett.

It would seem a shame to use the Kadett as a parts car, but it would be better than seeing it crushed.
If parts car, keep the A/T driveshaft and send it to me!
;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
We saw the Kadett today.
It is a rather pristine little unit. No dents, but the windshield is cracked. Has a 1987 Montana license plate. Missing the radiator and crankcase dipstick.
Has 1.9.
No sway bar setup in the rear...
Looked like the red paint would buff out nice... All chrome and aluminum trim (grille even) is cherry...
And the interior could use a good vacuuming and Armor- alling by my judgement.
And to think all I need is the engine and front suspension assembly and the differential ...
Yes let's at least find good homes for all the rest of its perfect little parts!!
Jeff
 

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front clip

I'm still looking for a good rust/dent free front clip for a Kadett. In fact, I'd cover the cost of the car for it. Wonder what it would take to ship fenders and a "nose" to SD.......

The Kadett wagons, Rallyes, and sport sedans all had the rear sway bar. The lowly sedan went without.

One other thing to consider is that most of the Kadetts with autos also had "taller" gearing (3.18) that'll make highway driving somewhat easier if you don't yet have overdrive. And speaking of the overdrive, you'll want to stash the speedo sender as well as the diveshaft and tranny crossmember for that upgrade too.

Just don't spend any time in the back seat. It's wicked comfotable and you might find yourself wondering if the GT's good looks really make up for not having that seat.....

Oh, and Otto, I'll gladly toss an auto driveshaft in with the box I'm sending you, for just a little driving on your part.;)
 

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The Kadett front suspension crossmember is different. The engine mount brackets are obvious, but the chassis mounting holes on the crossmember are in a different location too. GT has a 95.7" wheelbase, Kadett has a 95" wheelbase due to this different bolt hole location. Oh, and Kadett steering arms are longer therefore the steering ratio is slower, but they can be interchanged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Interesting about the steering arms being longer. About how much longer? Hmm. So if I used a kadett steering arm on the right side of the car and the GT steering arm on the left side, I would be introducing some "false" Ackerman steering into the whole scenario. This could definitely be worth a try!!
The actual front crossmember to frame mount on Speedway GT is quite modified to lower the body/frame so cutting up said mount on Kadett's crossmember would be in order...
Thanks for the input.
Jeff
 

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That's another point I failed to mention. The GT has ackerman designed into the steering arm angle, the Kadett does not. I remember comparing the two when I built my Kadett suspension since I put GT arms on it to quicken the steering.
 
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