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Thread: 1994 MM 2.4 EFI - Tow Truck for the Race Car

  1. #1

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    1994 MM 2.4 EFI - Tow Truck for the Race Car

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    Still fairly early stages and spaced out based on my work schedule, but piece by piece preparing Max for the summer and his role as "The Guardian" for Blue. Blue is my 1990 Plymouth Laser RS-T who I'm preparing for the road course with a goal of 350-400 WHP. You may hear more about her or see some of her pics too as this build progresses. I'm building them to work together.

    Anyway, I've mainly been trying to make it as solid an OE platform as possible before i start getting too heavy into mods. I repaired a broken crank pulley for the balance shaft belt, got new bearings and seals for the transmission and replaced a broken clutch cable, had a crack in my cast iron exhaust manifold brazed shut, bought a full size wheel for the spare tire, got SS Braided Brake Hoses, got a K&N OE, and did maintenance (Alignment, Oil Change, Tune Up, Tire Rotation, etc.)


    Probably the first "show and shine" upgrade I made was getting my tint done.

    The brake line pics are the only ones I can load from my phone at the moment
    Ill post more soon. Thanks for checking out my project!

    Finn
    Last edited by Finnie3d; 04-16-2011 at 01:12 PM.

  2. #2


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    they are both sounding like a whole bunch of fun...

    keep us posted ....ill be keeping up with this..

  3. #3


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    Interesting choice in a project. How did you upload pics from your phone? Did you sync it to your computer and then upload? I've been trying to upload from my phone and failed. I'm also a little interested in your project laser.like mods and such. You should make a build thread in the other vehicles section on that. Keep us posted.

  4. #4

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    More "Chips"?

    I'm laughing because that's the way they ask if you want more french fries in certain parts of Europe... total tangent to come to More Pics!! Tadah! (in no particular order)

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ID:	292 Here they are together...

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ID:	293 Saving Parts and Hanging Out...

    More to come...

  5. #5

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    Crank Pulley Crehhp

    Ok, so I would start my motor and get this sound like I was playing the lottery with small steel ball bearings... and my steering wheel would shake like crazy. And I was losing a good bit of oil from the front crank seal. And the temp needle would ride the 3/4 area way more than usual. So it was time for some general upkeep....

    Front crank seal, cam seal, timing belt, balance belt, water pump, thermostat (you know the drill) Found this...

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ID:	379 "crank sprocket B" looks ok right?
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ID:	380 view from the flip side "oooooohhh!"
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    Turns out "crank sprocket B" had a notch in the ledge built to hold the keyway in place. Basically the balance shaft was getting the wrong info about when to balance the crankshaft vibration. Truck's already apart but nobody's got the part. Gratefully, had time to go to the yard the next day and pull what I needed - pulley and keyway. *note* 1st Gen trucks have "crank sprocket B's" that look identical at first glance. Closer inspection will reveal pulleys with the same diameter, different #of gear teeth. No big deal, small dot pressed into the pulley's face lets you hold your place to count them. Also, 1st Gen pulleys won't have the "G" stamp. So sorry.

    Found the parts in good shape, shop installed with the other parts... smooooth running
    double checked with the timing light - steady as he goes. Yes!

    I'm thankful everything turned out well! More adventures to come...

  6. #6


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    There may have been a chance that the balance shaft itself may ne at fault why it stripped like that in the first place. Did you any type of diagnosing prior to installation of timing components?

  7. #7

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    So no. No extra diagnosing. I was replacing the timing components for maintenance, and my truck is my a to b right now, so I didn't have time to get into the details. When the maintenance parts and the new pulley solved my wandering temp needle and parkinson's steering wheel problems, I kept on moving. Still doing great.

  8. #8

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    To answer your question about the pics, USB. You can choose your pics from your phone's card or hard drive with the "attachment" button.

  9. #9

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    Air Conditioning... Yes!

    So I've been riding with no a/c since I bought the truck, and I had it recharged once before and it blew cold for like half a day... If the Max is going to be the tow truck for the race car, I've got to get some air blowing! Turns out there was a large hole in the condenser. Also turns out that the condenser for my truck is obsolete in the aftermarket and the dealer wants about $400 for it... I scoured pull-a-part but couldn't find one in good condition. Found this one in Atlanta, but it looked like it had the same bends in it as my original.

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    So I had to find a salvage yard online that would ship, turns out the one they sent was good, and now it's blowing COLD! It was one on "1" last night and my homeboy and I were hanging out and I had to turn the temp up a little. It was FREEZING! I'm excited because summers here are sweltering, high humidity opportunities to see how much sweat you can lose without dying...lol

    Next up... get my Belltech drop kit installed w/ OE suspension maintenance, and upgrade to heavy duty brakes (w/flush). Thanks for checking me out! Stay Tuned...

  10. #10

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    Mighty Max on a Rescue Mission

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    Look at Max doing work! Friend's cousin had unexpected electrical issue with his bike. Sucks because we were on our way to a proper strip club...

    Gratefully his swing arm wasn't stretched! Carried all four of us and his GSX-R 750 to his alternate transpo and the night continued. Good Times!

    Don't let people sleep on our trucks... they go HARD. Max to the rescue!

  11. #11

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    Finally got a chance to work on the truck again and cut 6.5" coaxials into the doors. Nothing fancy, but they sound good and I didn't have to buy a separate amp. #nice (Still haven't had a chance to install those suspension parts yet, but I'm getting closer. I'll keep you posted.)

  12. #12

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    Sneaker Freak

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    Needed two tires anyway, so I finally found someone who could get the Kumhos I had to match up. Took the opportunity to put my other two gold wheels on the ground. Smooth ride and noticeable increase in grip - still OE setup. Very happy with the ride, but looking forward to the suspension upgrades... :-) I'll keep you posted.

  13. #13

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    Quick Pic of the 6(.5's)

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    They're Polk and I got them from Best Buy because I really wanted to hear more bass in the music. They're not subs, but they add a lot more body to the sound than the 4"ers could do alone. Sounds good! (and good thing they have grilles because I would have kicked them to death by now)

  14. #14

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    My build thread is about to go Back to the Future... to tell you what I was able to do to my truck before I realized it, and what i haven't taken time to post about until now. Thanks for stopping by!

  15. #15



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    So you had 4 people in the truck and a bike???? Thats got to be a record of some type. But how about a picture of what you are going to be towing with the truck. Just never tow in 5th gear. You will burn the trany input shaft up.
    Are you going to fix the body when you start working on the suspension?
    Last edited by camoit; 12-04-2011 at 01:17 PM.
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  16. #16

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    I don't think it beats my record of 9 people in my truck, that sucked, at least we only had to go a mile. There were three in the front and six in the bed, the truck hated that, lol.

  17. #17

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    Race Car for the Tow Truck

    Quote Originally Posted by camoit View Post
    So you had 4 people in the truck and a bike???? Thats got to be a record of some type. But how about a picture of what you are going to be towing with the truck. Just never tow in 5th gear. You will burn the trany input shaft up.
    Are you going to fix the body when you start working on the suspension?
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    '90 Laser RS-T... found in the backyard of the auto shop of a family friend. Needed some basic repair to pass state inspection, but a steal as car, parts and labor only cost about $1K. Very slow but steady buildup of key points to make car fast and fun but still reliable, legal and safe. Homeboy doing me a favor putting the transmission in with upgraded axles. DEF looking forward to feeling the difference with the new tranny and LSD As far as the truck's body work, there's a good bit of work to be done, so I'm just glad it's not rusting out. That way as long as the motor's strong, I can let the body work wait. Did get a chance to get the suspension on, pics in another post coming soon...

  18. #18

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    Pics w the Drop Kit On

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    Very noticeable change in acceleration and braking. A little bouncy, but still a smooth ride - especially cruising at highway speeds. I'm very excited about how the truck is coming along...

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Finnie3d View Post
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    Very noticeable change in acceleration and braking. A little bouncy, but still a smooth ride - especially cruising at highway speeds. I'm very excited about how the truck is coming along...
    I'm noticing the bounce a lot more now when I drive the truck. I've never cut my springs, but it feels like I think it would if I had cut the springs. Can't really judge the handling because either the shocks or the springs or both need to be changed. But i like the ride height and the stance. I'm really looking forward to seeing the bodywork with aero parts. We drive Great Trucks!

  20. #20

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    Waiting...Tune-up...Dyno

    Bodywork and parts will have to wait though. Right now I'm shopping a full tune-up (plugs, wires, cap, rotor, O2 sensor, fuel filter, system flush), and with a drain and fill of the rear end and a brake flush, I believe he'll be ready for a baseline dyno run. I've got some rebuild plans for the powertrain, and I want to know just how much of an effect they're having. Just that full tune-up alone won't be cheap...so I'm taking my time. Plus I spend so much time at work that I'm forced to stretch the build out. Nature of the beast though. Gotta get the parts $$ somewhere. So if anybody knows a good place in Columbia,SC or nearby, or online where I can get all of those tune-up parts at once, and for a discount, I'd definitely appreciate the tip. NGK and Denso electronics preferred.

  21. #21

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    Waiting and waiting and waiting...

    Found the tune up parts for pretty cheap direct from DENSO, and the other OE parts from Advance. May have to wait until my next check to get them, but I'm looking forward to knowing where we're starting power wise before I start making other changes. I really want to know how much effect each change has on the power delivery. *Patience is a virtue...* I'm waiting and waiting and waiting... but I want it right the first time. Slowly finding more people involved with Mitsu in Columbia. It's coming...Here are a couple of pics from today after I washed all the plant jizz off... Click image for larger version. 

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  22. #22

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    Almost had the Shep Tranny (www.sheptrans.com) in my Laser, but my friend/installer told me that when the last trans grenaded, it took out the oil pan (he found a leaky crack). He offered to weld it back together for me, but I'd rather spend a few more schillings for a new pan now, that to spend a lot of smackers on a new motor if we skimp on the repair. The way I see it, it's kind of a plus to have to replace the pan because the one I'm shopping is all aluminum to keep the oil cooler, and has a windage baffle to keep the motor well fed. So it turns out to be a key upgrade. God works in mysterious ways... that are usually pretty easy to understand after the fact. (More on that with the windshield in a minute). I'm spotting the OBX aluminum...http://www.racingpartdepot.com/servl...Eclipse/Detail If anyone has any experience with this pan or knows where to get it cheaper (even though $200 is a pretty great price) please let a brother know. Really looking forward to seeing my girl back on the road... (maybe I'll take her to bike week in Myrtle Beach). And I just found out about the SE Face Off, in Fayetteville, NC which seems to be pretty heavily biased toward Mitsu products. Piece by piece... more details soon.

  23. #23



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    Any updates?
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  24. #24

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    Tune-Up(dates)

    Cam...the only person I could find the OBX pan from (for the Laser), I couldn't verify the security of the site. So I didn't order it. But I'm checking to see if someone else has it, or my friend might be able to weld a windage baffle inside the OE pan. I got all of the tune-up parts (plugs,wires, cap, rotor, PCV, fuel filter, 16ozs of Lucas fuel in the bottom of the tank, and now 89 octane gas) installed on the truck yesterday and just rechecked the timing tonight. (Good thing. I forgot I had it advanced 6* to offset the lack of stock power. lol) I was wondering why my gas mileage was worse AFTER the tuneup... I still have to get an O2 sensor because I ordered the wrong one...being greedy, I tried to get a four wire thinking it would provide more inputs for the stock setup and still perform better somehow #dreams... So I just sprayed the old one down with carb cleaner and popped it back in. While I had the manifold out, I put in some new exhaust gaskets (manifold and midpipe). My truck runs like a dream and I'm still excited about the build progress, even though a little slow by comparison to some other builds on the board. But trust and believe, once I get some good lump sum money, I've got some really advanced ideas for my 2nd Gen. I'm gonna represent our clan well!

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    Up next, (I might cheat on baseline a little bit and get an intake and catback b4 I dyno it) but I want to see where power numbers are before I get the lump rebuilt. My goal is to rebuild it right at 200,000 miles. Thanks for tuning in!

  25. #25



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    Here is where I was able to find the last Chevy 4.3 V6 oil pan in the known universe. If you have a new pan and send it to them they can modify it. No powder coating on it or they can't do it. http://champpans.com/
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