my 03 SX 2.0's journey (smurfette)

Do you have a project going or will you be starting a project here very soon and just want to keep a log of everything you and when? Share with everyone every step of the way what sort of progress you are making on your project.
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fargo59
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my 03 SX 2.0's journey (smurfette)

Post by fargo59 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 6:30 pm

*EDIT* photo hosting went down so ive had to re-host them. doing my best to put pictures back up.

i figured i may as well make a project log of my own. while i dont plan anything crazy, who knows. i pulled a perfectly good engine out of my charger 2 years ago, i might do the same with my SX.

so here it is, an atlantic blue 2003 SX 2.0. 5 speed. manual windows, and mirrors, power locks and keyless.
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the car came with a bunch of goodies from the last owner as well. a JVC radio, 6 disc CD changer, front strut bar, summer and winter tires all on OE wheels, some eibach Pro springs, and an AEM cold air intake.
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anyway, i bought the car, quite clean but with a cylinder 3 misfire. i parked it in the garage after picking it up, and didnt move it until the next weekend. i didnt have time, life, and so on.
so at 6:00 on saturday i finally was free of working so i pulled the car onto the hoist and pulled the cylinder head (compression was pretty much dead)

i found a cracked exhaust valve, and a worn exhaust cam lobe, both on cylinder three. i lucked out in a way, i expected a valve to be at fault, but figured it was a bent valve due to a broken timing belt at some point. i had bought a used cylinder head from an auto recycler. it came with a new cam, new rockers, and a valve cover. so i was set!
i put all of it back together, and including a 1/2 hour pizza run, i had it back up and running by midnight! :)
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up next was fixing the slop in the shifter. it was the first aftermarket part ordered for the car, the same night that i brought the car home actually. im glad i did.
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then i got bored of the JVC radio. which wasnt bad, but i had a kenwood deck in my intrepid r/t, and honestly, i liked it better. so in it went. plus the tilt display is helpful. its getting up there in age, but still sounds nicer than others ive heard.


up next:

the SRT4 tail pipe, ive had since 2005 or so in the garage, i just need to find a good muffler or resonator to go in the transmission tunnel, so the sound doesnt drive me (more) insane. LOL

oh yeah, i forgot, the eibach springs had a crack in one of them, im dealing with getting them warranted now. i have new KYB struts, and mounts for them, and new Energy suspension control arm bushings for when (if) the eibach's come in. not bad for the first month of owning the car. LOL.
Last edited by fargo59 on Sun Feb 08, 2015 5:35 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Tue Sep 04, 2012 11:25 pm

well, things change again. i picked up my payment for scrapping my intrepid R/T, so i went shopping for goodies. first was at futureshop, and picked up a compustar/firstech remote start. i put one of these in my uncle's pickup (1967 dodge A100) this summer and i liked it. simple enough.
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then tonight i stopped by bestbuy and found the "new" kenwood deck i'd been eyeing was on sale. so i bought the KDC-BT852HD deck while i was at it.
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i have a feeling i'll be putting my JBL sub and amp in the trunk soon if i can fab a box for the corner like the stock kicker.
the box it's in now would take up the whole trunk!

im really wishing i'd kept my alpine speakers from the intrepid. oh well, live and learn.

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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Sep 16, 2012 1:26 pm

okay yesterday i FINALLY managed to get some things done on the car.

new ball joints
Energy suspension control arm bushings
KYB struts and mounts all around
Eibach pro springs
and the ACR 19mm rear sway bar (i already have the 22mm front bar)
oh and i finally reinstalled the strut brace, which i cleaned up and polished.

what a day, but my shopping list keeps growing, now i'm looking for disc brake rear knuckles since i need to do rear brakes anyway, as well as a resonator for the SRT4 exhaust tail section i already have.

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trojmn
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Post by trojmn » Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:22 pm

nice. I even like the color!
03 SRT
Now building for GS ;-)

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Post by freelancer1988 » Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:24 pm

If you need help finding rear brakes and knuckles then let me know. The local yard here has a neon with everything last I checked.
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Sep 16, 2012 5:53 pm

wow, that's great. I'm going to talk to a few yards I've been to in the past, i just dont have the time to go for a wander.

i did manage to get some of the prep work done on the CAI tube, which had some digs, dents and a thin spot worn into the tube. hopefully it will be ready for paint work this week.
i also bought a set of R/T side skirts, so they'll be on the paint work pile this week as well.

im a shopoholic, i know...

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Post by freelancer1988 » Mon Sep 17, 2012 1:45 am

fargo59 wrote:wow, that's great. I'm going to talk to a few yards I've been to in the past, i just dont have the time to go for a wander.

i did manage to get some of the prep work done on the CAI tube, which had some digs, dents and a thin spot worn into the tube. hopefully it will be ready for paint work this week.
i also bought a set of R/T side skirts, so they'll be on the paint work pile this week as well.

im a shopoholic, i know...
Okay Keep me posted. I will be wandering a couple yards Thursday morning. :tongue8:

*Edited*
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:05 pm

well, it's time for another update.
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tire tread section hit me on the highway. it scared the bejezus out of me. fortunately it was just a windshield. my brother was kind enough to take care of it, and get the windshield replaced, and the windows tinted at the same time.
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:44 am

time for another update:

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ive done a lot in the past few months actually.

rear disc brakes are a hybrid of neon and intrepid parts. brackets and rotors are neon, backing plates, ebrake shoes are neon, as are calipers as they are 36mm, which i liked for a rear disc setup. i plan a larger front brake setup so this worked well

next up, exhaust!

i finally got to installing the SRT4 tailpipe on my car and adding a Solo performance 24" QR resonator to help quiet it down

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it was a bit much, so ive added a 17" Jones Exhaust resonator behind the other resonator. better.

now for headlamps:
i bought a pair of eagle eye lamps off ebay, and immediately baked them open. :)

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to install these:

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Morimoto Mini H1 5.0's.

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and blue demon eyes.

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Pimp_Daddy_Patty
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Post by Pimp_Daddy_Patty » Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:07 am

Those are nice head lights
'04 SX 2.0T 5 speed
'98 2.4 3 speed 50 trim drag car 12.1 1/4 mile
'94 Ranger 4.0 swap 5 speed (tow vehicle)

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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:55 am

Thanks! i have some finishing touches to do before they can go in the car, but im REALLY happy with how they went. this is my first retrofit, so i know round two (my brother's magnum) will go even better.

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Post by NickKo » Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:27 pm

fargo59 wrote:time for another update:


now for headlamps:
i bought a pair of eagle eye lamps off ebay, and immediately baked them open. :)

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Just seeing this now.
Cool !! :)

Question - What temperature did you set the oven at, to 'bake' the headlamps open ??


- Nick
-1998 2-dr SOHC MTX= 57mm TB; Maddog STS
-2000 Ply.LX w/MTX = Maddog STS; CAI; 2.5 exh.; 60mm T/B
-2001 ATX w/Syked PCM + Magnum header
-2001 ACR w/SRT T/B bored out to 55mm

Official "I'm Going to Drive My Neon till it Dies" Club #000009

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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:08 pm

these were easy, since they were sealed with butyl already. 250* for 5-7 minutes was EASY. i almost had it coming off before it went in the oven even.

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Post by fargo59 » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:21 pm

from this:

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to this!

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Pimp_Daddy_Patty
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Post by Pimp_Daddy_Patty » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:08 am

r/t cluster? definitely more classy
'04 SX 2.0T 5 speed
'98 2.4 3 speed 50 trim drag car 12.1 1/4 mile
'94 Ranger 4.0 swap 5 speed (tow vehicle)

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Post by occasional demons » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:54 pm

Or export SRT.

IDK that the Canadian/export R/T clusters went higher than 140 MPH/220 KMH that the domestic ACR and R/T's had.
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 5:36 pm

i swapped the mask from my stock SXT to an 02 canadian cluster.

that was an interesting experience, i'll know a few tricks for next time.

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Post by akirony » Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:17 pm

I love reading other's logs. It gets my spirit excited
Have car-have car problems. Have srt4-have speed problems
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sat Dec 14, 2013 12:33 pm

i agree, it can be fun. i really havent done much to my car so to speak, still havent installed the lamps. so much going on lately.

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Post by akirony » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:53 pm

I'm waiting to see what your engine bay looks like after paint. I just started with my f-rail cover just for kicks.
Have car-have car problems. Have srt4-have speed problems
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Sun Jan 19, 2014 3:30 pm

well just a brief update, i had to replace both lower control arms for a few reasons. as i mentioned in another thread, one of the arms was aftermarket and had caused some issues with the energy suspension control arm bushings. it fit weird, and wore out prematurely. lately i had been chasing a clunk, and assumed it was the bushings. i also assumed that my alignment issue with Caster being off, was due to the aftermarket arm. looking closely i noticed one of the Moog ball joints had come loose in the OEM arm, meaning both arms had issues. so a new pair of OEM arms went in. so far, so good!

more to follow.

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Post by INVUJerry » Sun Jan 19, 2014 6:53 pm

What's the rear disc setup?
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So many neons so little time.

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Post by fargo59 » Sun Jan 19, 2014 10:44 pm

the rear brake setup is sort of cobbled together. cables rotors, and hoses are neon, backing plates and brackets are from an intrepid. im using a 36mm caliper from an intrepid as well. I had to drill out the ends of the flex lines to fit the banjo bolts of the caliper. this could have been corrected by using 1gn flex lines (which i had, but the used lines were blocked or collapsed. so i bought new lines.)

all in all, the rear brakes should have less grab at this time, but will work better for my plan when i swap the front brakes to PT cruiser setup soon.

the car is quite stable on braking though i dont think its on par with my charger just yet.

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Post by occasional demons » Mon Jan 20, 2014 8:21 am

So, Intrepids do serve a purpose. :-k


:rofl:
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Post by caustic neon » Mon Jan 20, 2014 8:31 am

lmao that and 2.4 donors
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Neons owned
2003 Dodge SXT (MAGGIE) = Dead X 3
1997 Dodge Highline DOHC coupe = Sold
1996 Dodge sedan (Baby) SOHC = Sold
1996 Dodge espresso coupe SOHC (Stella) = Dead
1998 Plymouth ACR------- more to come

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Post by fargo59 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 9:16 am

lol, hey, i had 2 intrepids both were 3.5's. my last being an R/T.
caustic neon wrote:lmao that and 2.4 donors
they never came with 2.4's. or any 4 cylinders for that matter.

i would have loved to use the front brakes off of it as well, but they're A) too big, and B) part of the knuckle.

im hoping today to squeeze my alignment in at the end of the day today, it bugs me when the steering wheel is off, even just a small amount. lol.

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Post by occasional demons » Mon Jan 20, 2014 12:41 pm

Nothing really wrong with Intrepids. I do like the Concord and the 300M better tho.

The early Intrepid body style, I absolutely hate.

With the Viper Kaminari fascia on my '01 neon, I actually refer it as the "Mini Intrepid", because it looks more like an Intrepid than a Viper.
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Post by fargo59 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 12:49 pm

lol, no worries. i should have put a smiley in there.

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Post by Fuzzyneon » Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:26 pm

fargo59 wrote:lol, hey, i had 2 intrepids both were 3.5's. my last being an R/T.
caustic neon wrote:lmao that and 2.4 donors
they never came with 2.4's. or any 4 cylinders for that matter.

i would have loved to use the front brakes off of it as well, but they're A) too big, and B) part of the knuckle.

im hoping today to squeeze my alignment in at the end of the day today, it bugs me when the steering wheel is off, even just a small amount. lol.
I had a 96 3.5 i loved that car for some reason


neons coming along nicely
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fargo59
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Post by fargo59 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 9:23 pm

thanks. all in due time. this is my commuter car, since this one is the toy:

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