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Thread: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

  1. #1
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    Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    From the reading I've done, I'm guessing that it has an A413 in it?

    I'm interested in any improvements that can be made to the transmission- especially those that can be done/made at little to no cost, since this is a Grassroots Motorsports $20xx Challenge 'car' (quotes required because the transmission- and its associated engine- are now in a Rampage).

    I'd LOVE to find a limited-slip for it to help on the drag portion of the event, but I know the odds of my finding one for remotely Challenge money are about the same as my winning the lottery. I would like to figure out how to keep it from seeming to want to go into 3rd gear as quickly as possible- it seems like when I drive it on the street that it wants to bump up through the gears as fast as it can. Thanks!

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    Super Moderator Turbo Mopar Staff contraption22's Avatar
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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    A good LSD will eat up better than half your total budget. If you search around, you can find upgrade info using replacement parts from other years/models.
    Mike Marra
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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    are you planning on going through it completely . or just messing with it some.

    do you want easy off the shelf bolt ins.
    or do you want some machining and parts hunting other trans possibly.

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Yeah, since I'm never going to find a LSD camping out in a junkyard that I can pull for less than the bottle of bourbon I was supposed to trade for my race tires this year, an LSD is out.

    I'm probably not going to be going through it completely- but there's a chance that may happen (it will depend on if the members of the local Makerspace decide they want to participate and we can split up work). Easy bolt-ons for certain, but I do have access to a decent machine shop where as long as I can do the work myself I can use everything at no budget hit.

    One of the more radical (/insane, admittedly) ideas I've been kicking around is trying to make a spool either from scratch or from a stock diff. The only thing I'm not sure about (and it's a big 'thing', figuratively speaking) is machining the splines...

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    Super Moderator Turbo Mopar Staff contraption22's Avatar
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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashyukun View Post
    Yeah, since I'm never going to find a LSD camping out in a junkyard that I can pull for less than the bottle of bourbon I was supposed to trade for my race tires this year, an LSD is out.

    I'm probably not going to be going through it completely- but there's a chance that may happen (it will depend on if the members of the local Makerspace decide they want to participate and we can split up work). Easy bolt-ons for certain, but I do have access to a decent machine shop where as long as I can do the work myself I can use everything at no budget hit.

    One of the more radical (/insane, admittedly) ideas I've been kicking around is trying to make a spool either from scratch or from a stock diff. The only thing I'm not sure about (and it's a big 'thing', figuratively speaking) is machining the splines...
    Probably not a good idea for autocross.
    Mike Marra
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    http://www.turbo-mopar.com/forums/showthread.php?69708-The-Contraption-2013-14&highlight=

  6. #6

    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashyukun View Post
    One of the more radical (/insane, admittedly) ideas I've been kicking around is trying to make a spool either from scratch or from a stock diff. The only thing I'm not sure about (and it's a big 'thing', figuratively speaking) is machining the splines...
    Easier might be just welding up the differential. But as noted, it would not be good for the autocross portion? How do you feel about swapping differentials or transmissions between events? Is that allowed?

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by contraption22 View Post
    Probably not a good idea for autocross.
    Oh, of course not... the idea (again, this is in the 'radical/insane' range...) would be the make the AX runs with the normal diff and then swap in the spool for the drags. I really need to get some drag slicks though and find out just how badly the open diff is really hurting me- I had bigger problems (running A6 tires that spun like crazy on the strip, the wastegate actuator rod disconnecting from the wastegate on both runs) so I don't have a real idea yet of how bad I really need it.

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by c2xejk View Post
    Easier might be just welding up the differential. But as noted, it would not be good for the autocross portion? How do you feel about swapping differentials or transmissions between events? Is that allowed?
    Yup, it's perfectly allowed- as long as all of the parts that are on the vehicle at any point are in the budget, and was (in the case of swapping the diff- I hadn't considered swapping the whole transmission, but figure that would be both more work and likely to be a bigger budget hit...) exactly what I had in mind since the spool would only really be good on the strip. Technically welding the diff is illegal under the NHRA rules that the competition follows (with some exceptions), but I'm sure people have done it in the past.

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Add a transcooler and spend the money on tires would be my vote.

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by tryingbe View Post
    Add a transcooler and spend the money on tires would be my vote.
    The radiator has the built-in trans cooler which I think should be sufficient for intermittent drag and autox runs- were I doing something like 24 Hours of LeMons where it would be running non-stop for hours on end it might be a diferent story, but for the fact that I can easily let things cool off between runs I would imagine that the stock setup should be fine.

    Tires are already accounted for, though not all are purchased yet- I have a set of AutoX tires/wheels in the budget and will be using my 'free' (in the budget) set of tires to get a set of drag tires for the car.

    I'm going to be out at a junkyard with an inordinate number of 80's FCA cars tomorrow morning, so I'm trying to get a handle on what all I should be looking for while I'm there (since it's a several hour haul to get there and I can't just pop over there easily if I want something else).

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    well there are some walk throughs on how to DIY a shift kit.
    and turn up the line pressure.

    make sure it is a TURBO trans.
    the governer likes to stick. id yank it and clean it.

    you can weld a diff and swap it around. not a terrible idea.


    If you wanna yank it down. there are a few dozen small mods you can do while inside it.

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    Re: Upgrades/Improvements to 1989 Turbo LeBaron transmission (auto)

    Quote Originally Posted by masterjr33 View Post
    well there are some walk throughs on how to DIY a shift kit.
    and turn up the line pressure.

    make sure it is a TURBO trans.
    the governer likes to stick. id yank it and clean it.

    you can weld a diff and swap it around. not a terrible idea.


    If you wanna yank it down. there are a few dozen small mods you can do while inside it.
    The engine and transmission were swapped together from a 1989 LeBaron convertible, so I have no reason to doubt that it's a turbo tranmission (unless that's a designation for something different I don't know about...). I imagine at some point I'll be opening it up to do some mods... just did my first shift kit install on my Grand Cherokee last month, though unfortunately it didn't seem to resolve its main issues. :P

    Also, just found this (http://www.turbo-mopar.com/forums/kn...-Mods-and-Info) which looks like it should be very helpful!

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