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Finally Decided

After kicking around V6 ideas for the past few months, I've decided what I want to do. I just picked up what is left of a 2000 Camaro. 2.8 series 2 with a 4 speed auto trans. The computer has been removed but at leats I wont feel bad about spending the cash on a superchip upgrade. The great thing is the car only had 21 K miles when it was totaled. My concern ids the rear end. I don't really know what the condition, and have heard of too many problems with GT rear ends over 200 horse. Then there is the problem of rust. The shell has a lot of it, the trailinf arms are rusted in half and the trailing arm mounts and upper spring saddles are almost totally gone ( have to love Michigan winters). I dedided I'm going to use the independant rear suspensoin from a 89 Corvette. For those who arent familiar whit this system, it uses the same spring system as the front suspension of the GT (side to side leafs). Three bolts to hold the whole system in the frame a couple of shocks and sway bar mounts and your done. It even has rear disk brakes so I wont even have to upgrade that later. I've decided to built a complete tube frame to link the rear to and increase body strength. The rear is easy but I am having trouble figuring how to link the new frame with the front suspension without raising the ride height of the car much. Any ideas?
 

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I am working on almost exactly the same project that you are. I have a 1996 Camaro with the 3.4 engine. I do believe that the 2000 model has a 3.8 based on the 60 degree 2.8. It should work fine in the confined space given. The only problem that I see with your design idea is that both the Corvette and Camaro suspensions are 14 to 16 inches wider than the Opel GT's. I have worked around the front suspension problem by purchasing 2x3 steel tubing 1/8 thick. All that you have to do is remove the rocker panels and weld the tubing to the reinforcement section under the rocker. In my case that was rusted anyway, so I replaced it completely. The 2x3 tube will stick about an inch below the origional rocker area, but I used my sheet metal break and made low-profile rockers. Then I took 1x8 tubing and welded in place of the center well supports and brought them to the point where 2x4 tube came out. This along with some up-right posts provided the structural strength needed to create the front support. I went ahead and cut off the whole front end and welded the hood on the fenders. The next step will be to make the whole front section lift up like a Jag's front end. To compensate for the increased size of the suspension, I have purchased an english wheel. I am now in the process of giving the front and rear fenders Porsche-like fenders. So far so good.

More later
rich:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You'll have to post pics when that is done. Should look real nice A bit farther than I really want to go right now. I've decided to go with a complete tube system and just bolt the body on to the frame, similar to a top fule funny car design. I finally got the shell into the garage and flipped it over, so now I have a better idea of what to do. What I think will be easiest is to remove the factory uni-body tubes and build the frame to run along the same size and directions. All I'll have to do is drill holes and bolt the factory front steering and suspension as it was. Should not even change the ride height. As to the vette rear, your right, it will have to be shortened. This should not be too hard as the halfshafts are just two short driveshafts with u-joints. I will have to shorten the control arms. Nothing a tortch and welder can't fix. If I have to I'll have a shorter main spring made, then its just a matter of playung with the cams to get camber set right.
 

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The Camaro engine referred to is a 60 degree motor where the GN motor is a 90 degree engine . Quite a bit wider overall , but would be a very nice component to plant in an Opel. I am sure I have seen one on the net somewhere...

RITTER
 

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Camaro V6 clarifications

I have to clear a few things up about the Camaro V6 engines.

The 2.8, 3.1 and 3.4 that were offered in the Camaro are 60 degree engines, the 3.8 V6 is NOT- it is a 90 degree V6.

The last year for the 60 degree V6 engines was 95 I believe. After 95 the F-body cars went to the 3.8 90 deg. V6. The 3.8s and the earlier 60 degree V6 motors are not related in any way.

The 3.8's make good power (somewhere around 200 hp, 225 torque if I remeber correctly) and there is a supercharged version offered in the Grand Prix GTP that puts out 240 hp. But from my experiences with the 60 degree motors, you would have a very hard time putting one in a stock opel body without major cutting.

The other thing about the 3.8's is that they have a really strange exhaust note. The sound nice at idle and lower rpm but get really high pitched at higher revs. The 60 degree motors sound very good, especially with a Flowmaster. I have a sound clip of a 2.8 with an 80 series crossflow Flowmaster that sounds really good. I actually had people ask me if I had a V8!

Later

Nathan Acree
Albuquerque New Mexico
 

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This reply is to an older thread.

#1. I'd like to know how far these projects have gone. Sounds like a couple had good starts.

#2. I doubt the Corvette IRS works. I've seen an '89 IRS installed on a '63 Vette. It was narrowed a lot and the 1/2 shafts looked like 1/3 shafts (about 9" long). 3" of wheel travel and the shaft is at 18 degrees. On an Opel GT the problem at least doubles if not more. No way the joints can move that much. It's close to fixed axle.

For V6 applications (and mild V8) the 1980's 280ZX or 300ZX are the right size and strong enough.
 

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My V-6 mod is on kinda hold right now. I've got the engine and tranny bolted up together, ran the engine on the test stand, built a component to bypass the theft deterrant system. Built up and modified the engine/tranny subframes, mimicing the original frames. Got an NOS ZF posi-traction for the GT rebuilt and installed. Got carried away with POR-15 and repainted the entire rear-end assembly. Replaced the rear brakes including lines/hoses and emergency brake hardware. Polishing the mag wheels and screwed up the finish by overzealous use of PC Glisten from the POR-15 folks. As soon as I get the wheels done, the rest of the brake lines/hoses get replaced and the engine goes in for final measuring to trim the sheet metal to drop the engine in and get custom headers built up. I have to use all the sensors for the computer hook-ups except the air pump so the headers will have to accept the EGR and oxygen sensors for both exhaust banks. Little by little, it's getting there.

Ron
 

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You won't regret using POR-15 on the axle later. I'm using it on the engine too. After doing all this work to have flaking paint in a few weeks is bad.

I scored a 49" long Dana 44 axle on eBay. It's from a 70's Jeep mail truck. 30 spline axles, LSD and 3.73:1 gears. It weighs a bundle more but can't be broken w/o a lot of torque. I think the drums are 10" x 1.5", big brakes for an Opel. I'll probably switch to disks later but that can wait (it's only money). When I get my camera working agian I'll post a pic. I'm using coil-overs and ladder bars, so the axle needs just a couple brackets added.

Good luck.
 

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I'm kinda a regular on the other list serv and feel like I've been really pitching the attributes of POR-15. I ordered another gallon of the Marine Clean and Metal Ready, so when I remove the rest of the stuff from the GT, bit by bit, it will treated and be real neat and shiny. When I get done with the brake lines/hoses, the master cylinder and booster will get the treatment also. The new brake lines and emergency brake hardware are coated in clear. The gallon of Marine Clean will be used to clean the bottom side of the GT so I can see how much more I may have to do. Right now it doesn't look bad, but a good cleaning may reveal some bad spots. Now if there were some 36 hour days I could get more work done.

Ron
 

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I've spent hours cleaning gunk off, then brushed on Marine Clean and the stubborn stuff dissolved away. It's amazing. I hate paying for shipping liquids. But the time saved and quality is well worth it. A gallon goes a LONG way. I pour some in a separate container, then brush it on. Rinse and repeat. I used about 3 oz to do two engine blocks (all the heavy stuff was removed first).

I use CLR on parts with rust before using the POR-15 products. It's cheap and removes the bulk of the rust. POR-15 products work better, but it saves some money and the POR-15 finishes off the hard stuff. CLR brushes on and rinses off. Doesn't take any effort.
 

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Thanx, I'll check out the CLR and see if I can get some locally here. I've used almost all of the Marine Clean I got in two starter sets, so the gallon enroute should last a fairly long time. I called the POR-15 folks about using the cleaner on my rubber membrane motorhome roof and they said a dilution of 17:1 should be good. It wasn't really great but it did clean a lot better than the mild dish soap the MFG recommended. A little more strength should take the little black spots off. Anything to save time, I'm for, which is the reason I got gallons of both. I've got a lot of other uses than just the GT to use this stuff on. But I need more time in the day to get it all. For sure!!!

Ron
 

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I'm new to this site. After 20 years of sitting I'm finally getting to restore my GT's. Anyway, saw this thread and had to ask a few questions.

How much hp/torque can be generated out of the later, bolt up 2.4L Opel engines??

Does Opel still manufacture the same 2.4's for current production??

Is there a factory turbo model on any of the 2.2L, 2.4L??

How strong is the Getrag 5 speed??

Does anyone have any experience with coilover's on the GT??
 

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To answer your questions,

A stock 2.4L makes 125HP and 144 lb ft of torque. How much can you make? That depends on how many buck$ you have. 200HP is a reasonable number for reasonable buck$. You could get over 300HP if you have enough buck$.

I think production of the 2.4L CIH engine ended in the early 90's

None of these engines that I know of came with turbos. But... refer back to the first paragraph.

The Getrag will hold up to about 200HP if you are not drag racing it. It would hold up for a while drag racing, but it would also be an "expendable"

We've tried a couple of "coil-over" set-ups on our car. All but one intended for a full race set-up have been unsatisfactory. The top strut tower, and the whole suspension cross member are just not strong enough... everything becomes a flex-flier. So, the only set-up I can recommend would be the race set-up with street springs... very expensive.
 

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I agree. The GT suspension is designed to have the weight carried thru the spring points, not the top of the shocks. Going to coil-overs is much easier on a car (not a GT) with the shocks either concentric with or adjacent to the springs. A GT would require reinforcing all the shock connection points for the full body weight (plus dynamic loads) and adding braces/reinforcement from the top of the shocks back to (or near) the current spring points. On the front end plenty of stuff is in the way for running straight struts (axial, the most effective method) from the top of the shock tower to the center of the crossmember. Flexural type supports add more weight and bend more.

There are aftermarket springs available. Plus, custom springs can be made. The downside, coil-over springs are available for many rates making tuning easier and you can different rates on the front (side-to-side). But changing the mono-leaf and rear springs on a GT is fast.
 

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What about any custom control arms . . . spindles . . . etc???
 

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I'll hit ya up on that. Right now I'm up to my eyeballs in a 2.7 911s rebuild. Think I got lucky on it though. Got it with a spare engine. Took it apart and it looked like some hillrod had gotten ahold of it. Case was shot. #2 & #3 mains were so wallowed out it looks as if he spun a bearing although the shells appeared to be in place when I cracked the case apart. The valves could be rocked back and forth almost 1/4 of an inch. There were carbon trails up to the retainers. Some valves were missing the stem seal completely.

Anyway, to make a long story short I had shelved everything from that motor thinking it was all a lost cause. It wasn't until I had the running engine out of the car that I decided to look over things again. What I thought was originally ball hone marks (which will destroy most all except a few very early 911 cylinders) was actually the factory etchings. I looked at the pistons and the forging lines weren't even scored from the piston skirts. Looks like some idiot got a deal on a set of pistons and cylinders and stuck 'em in without any other work. Needless to say, due to the condition of the heads, the were VERY gunked up with almost a wet, carbon like residue. Clearances on pistons, (including ring to piston clearance) cylinders, pins, etc. are all reading dead on new specs.

Then comes the NEXT big find. When I disassembled the engine from the car I found that it had just recently had a head job (within app. 5k) Valve stem clearance is as if they were brand new. Seats look brand new. Chambers had some carbon, but also some areas that were barely tarnished.

Looks like I'll get out of it pretty inexpensively. Only about $2k in standard case work (alignbore, timecert, etc)

SOOOO, for all you fellow Opelers out there that think the GT costs an arm and a leg. . . .Just think about the STANDARD $6k to $8k that you'd drop on a bone stock 2.7 (mid '70's engine) 170 hp Porsche rebuild. Then think about how much hp YOU can get from a 2.4 if you drop about $5k!!!
 

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I haven't seen any. If somebody has please tell me. All I have seen are brake kits.

I'm considering reinforcing the A-arms, and using Mustang II spindles and ball joints. The Mustang II spindles have a ton of cheap aftermarket parts available. The ball joints won't bolt on, adapters need to be welded to the A-arms. The in-out offset (top vs. bottom) of the ball joints is different. If it works, great; if not, I have one poor handling car. Oh well, nothing is learned by not trying.
 
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