How do I convert to 4x4? - Mustang Evolution

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Old 09-30-2003, 04:17 PM   #1
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How do I convert to 4x4?

First off, please don't flame. here's the background story on why i am asking this.

in the fall of 2002, i was riding in the car with my mom and we saw a honda crx in front of a building with a for sale sign on it. I thought nothing of it as she had just bought me a 1990 Ford Mustang GT about 2 weeks prior. Well, i go home and nearly forget about it but on her way home from work the next day, she stops to look at it. It's a nice little piece of **** and the guy who comes out of the building she knew. It was a limo driver that she had hired many times for parties and my elementry and middle school graduation. He had got the car at an auction for under a hundred dollars and had the title. The only thing clearly wrong with it was the ignition, which he would fix for 30 dollars. He had someone willing to pay $500 cash for it, but because we were friends. He decided to sell it to us instead. Like i said, he is a limo driver, but he owns his own limosuine buisness. He has 37 limos in Anderson, Muncie, and Indianapolis Indiana. So since I didn't have any money, he put me to work detailing the limos. I put in about 25 hours and he signed the title of the CRX over to me.

By this time, I had already began stripping the hell out of the car. I took everything out of the interior, the seats, the carpet, the speakers, the moldings, the dash, the headliner, EVERYTHING. It's all bare now. Then I went to work on the exterior, i ripped the panels off of it and the fenders and everything that was not steel, welded to the car was removed. We have a two car garage, where the mustang and the tahoe are parked in the winter. So i applied primer to the whole car and got a cover hoping that might stop it from rusting a bit in the winter. It's sitting in the back yard and i havn't done much to it since the summer. I had planned on turning it into a all out drag car, but i must have been insane. I can't fit an engine with anymore than 200 horse in the engine bay, if i want to run 15s on a pure drag car, then i can go ahead with this idea. Otherwise, I better rethink.

Today on the way home from the doctors office, i look over to the side of the road and i see a neighbor who has a 1970s Camaro all jacked up on monster truck wheels. I smiled and thought "holy ****... maybe i could do that to the crx.. it'd be alot more fun than playing around on the drag strip and getting made fun of" So i came home and asked for some opinions. Zimstang agree'd that it would be better as an offroad machine. (and easier to build actually.)

So my question is: What am I going to have to do to make this Front Wheel Drive import a 4x4 offroad monster? Am i going to need to just get a new driveshaft or transmission or am i going to need a whole new chasis off of a 4 wheel drive vehicle? My neighbor is retired from General Motors and has a 4 car garage.. he is very knowledgeable about cars and I know he'd help me do it, I just want to get a little background information before I ask what he thinks.
Any information, links, opinions are greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Mike
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:28 PM   #2
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it depends. if you went with a large lift, all you would need is the tranny, driveshaft, rear end. if you went lower, then you might need a new floorpan. depends if its cut to be a rwd car also.

just remember though, youre gonna need torque to push that beast, so i still suggest a new motor. even a small motor w/ a turbocharger will be suffecient.
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:33 PM   #3
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Well, I planned on lifting it big and putting mag wheels and offroad tires (like 36+").. I want this to go through anything, we live in the country and have two corn fields right next to our house.. basically i have 160 acres of unplotted land surrounding my house.
And yeah.. I'll need to get a new engine, and also a new transmission.. That's no problem, the engine in it has like 200K miles on it. I'm removing it in the spring and selling it to some kid at my highschool, he is going to fabricate a gocart and put the engine in it. He's paying me like 600 bucks for the engine/tranny (lol, he said the price. i agreed)
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2000 Chevrolet Tahoe LS
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4-Speed Automatic 4x4


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5.0L V8
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:36 PM   #4
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wow, that will be enough to get you a new motor. but make sure to buy a 4x4 tranny and make sure to get a 4x4 rear end and all the necessary equipment with it.
the shocks, springs, lower/upper control arms will need to be fabricated, exhaust cant go thru the middle anymore, so youll have to alter the direction of it.

you should be good to go after that
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:40 PM   #5
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by 4x4 rear end, do you mean axle?

and where would i get the shocks, springs, and lower/upper control arms fabricated? Would it be serious work? Could I do it or would i need a professional? And i don't mind about the exhaust not being able to go through the middle, but where could i make it go? Could i make it turn right out to the sides (like roushe mustangs) but in the engine bay area... before you even hit the front wheels?
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:52 PM   #6
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yes and no on the 4x4 axle. usually 4x4 rear ends have an off-set carrier. its slightly to one side or the either, not in the middle. so youll want one of those. but yes, its still a live axle rear.

for shocks, springs, yadda yadda. with a torch, you should be able to fabricate it all yourself. the CRX doesnt have control arms in the back, so youll need the brackets to hold them on. know what i mean? youll have to weld brackets to the car for holding the control arms. youll have to get longer shocks and springs anyway, and they typically go in a coil-over fashion on 4x4s, so the bottom will be fine (on the rear cause its made for it) but might require some cutting and welding

as for the exhaust. you can make it go out the roof of the car if you so desired. i would not suggest it going out before the front wheels though. one, youll need all new header(s) cause that would cause the air to change from going back, to front. next, youll have to still angle it back somewhat. on that type of angle, you could get air going into the exhaust causing even more backpressure and on such short an exhaust, would build up to the head itself is possible. i would go like the roush has it if you want side exhaust. if you decide on traditional exhaust, you can just bend it over the axle and have it coming out the back or even out like a Y
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:57 PM   #7
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Alright, thanks a lot.
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2000 Chevrolet Tahoe LS
5.3L VORTEC (not V-TEC) V8
4-Speed Automatic 4x4


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5.0L V8
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Old 09-30-2003, 04:59 PM   #8
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that things gunna kick ass if you actually do it... lol
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Old 09-30-2003, 05:00 PM   #9
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sure thing, thats what we're here for.

in the spring, i would take it to a 4x4 shop though and talk to them and get price estimates, cause some of the stuff, you will need to have installed.
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Old 09-30-2003, 05:17 PM   #10
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Yeah,

This spring I am removing the engine and tranny and selling it to Ira for about 600 bucks. Then moving it into the garage and removing the body from the chasis. Once that's done I'm having both sandblasted. Should I take the sandblasted chasis to the 4x4 shop and have them mod it before it's back on the body or what? I think it would make things easier, but at the same time something might get messed up.. so I might want to put it back on before I take it there... Then I'll probably buy an engine and tranny, I don't know what kind to get yet but I'll find out along the way..
I'm going to need to put the engine and tranny in it before I get the suspension work done though because otherwise I won't be able to pull it into the garage and use the engine hoist. So, let's lay it down as this

Spring 2004,
Remove the Engine/Tranny
Unbolt the Body from the Chasis
Sandblast Both
Put the Body back on the chasis
Bolt it down
Put a new engine/tranny in.
Replace all of the Windows.

THEN, if it's possible.. I'll see about having the suspension work done this summer too, but that seems like a lot of crap to get done in just a few short months. If I don't get the suspension work done, it'll look like this.

Spring 2005,
Interior Work, MAJOR.
Diamond Plate Dashboard.
Indigo Guages
Diamond Plate Floorboards and Hatch (Im not putting carpet in an offroader)
New Seats from Summit Racing (60 bucks I think)
CD Player, Stock speakers
Suspension Lift
Springs, Shocks, Upper/Lower Control Arms
Mag Wheels/Big Ass Offroad Tires

I can paint it cause I'm pretty good with painting and body work.. I'm thinking of just a straight gloss black and then having my more-so talented friend (he's been painting for 12 years.) do some ghost flames or something.. It will be a nice paintjob covered in mud.
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2000 Chevrolet Tahoe LS
5.3L VORTEC (not V-TEC) V8
4-Speed Automatic 4x4


Garaged:
1990 Ford Mustang GT
5.0L V8
4-Speed Automatic Overdrive
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Old 09-30-2003, 07:07 PM   #11
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just wondering... should i construct a roll cage, relocate the battery to the hatch and get a fuel cell and put it in there too... that way i wouldn't have the tank underneath the car.

also, what kind of engine would you go with? Looking through JEGS i find an engine that i think would work.. but i dunno.. Also, what are the main things that i should look out for, I'm wanting this to be an offroad vehicle, but i also want it to be street legal. Below is the engine that i was looking at.

Deluxe: HO Engine w/ 65cc Chamber vortec Heads

The 330hp 350 is loaded with cool parts to provide a complete engine package and eliminate the guess work. This one includes an aluminum dual plane intake, Holley carburetor, HEI distributor, water pump, harmonic balancer, and a flex-plate for automatic transmissions.

-330HP @ 5000 RPM, 380 ft.lbs. @ 3800 RPM
-9.1:1 Compression Ratio - 4-Bolt Main Block
-PM Steel Connecting Rods * Cast Pistons
-64cc Champers, Vortec Cast Iron Cylinder Heads w/1.94" Intake/1.50 Exhaust Valves.
-Dual Pattern Cam, Lift: .435/.460" Duration at .050: 212*/222*
-600 cfm vacume secondary holley carb.
-Dual Plane Aluminum Intake Manifold
-Nodular Cast Iron Crankshaft.
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2000 Chevrolet Tahoe LS
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4-Speed Automatic 4x4


Garaged:
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5.0L V8
4-Speed Automatic Overdrive
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Old 09-30-2003, 07:19 PM   #12
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if ur buying that engine... dont make it a 4x4, make it a racer lol
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Old 09-30-2003, 07:23 PM   #13
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well then what would be a good 4x4 engine? I was only paying attention to the horse and torque numbers.
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4-Speed Automatic 4x4


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Old 09-30-2003, 08:41 PM   #14
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that engine sucks IMO. i mean, its a good engine, but not for what youre wanting to do. look at the compression. that is just begging to be blown.

get an engine at about 10-10.5:1 compression. that is a carbed engine, and thus you would have to switch from EFI to carborator.

the fuel cell and roll cage are good ideas. the CRX has a really narrow platform and is skinny as well. dont want you to roll that thing.
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Old 09-30-2003, 08:52 PM   #15
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is this good?

Magnum 360 Shortblock 10.5:1 Compression Ratio
$1353.99
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4-Speed Automatic 4x4


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Old 09-30-2003, 10:26 PM   #16
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looks good. i'd email them and makre sure you can still make it EFI (that is, if you wanna keep EFI which i suggest for off-road cars. might hit a hill and it'd be too steep and youd get no gas pouring in the engine)
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Old 10-01-2003, 02:56 PM   #17
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A guy i work with has a Grand am body on a Ram Charger chassis, looks.....well, looks different, he has a hemi in it, with 44" mud tires, its a pure toy, pretty cool though, ill see if I can get some pics of it some time.
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Old 10-01-2003, 03:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 01mineralgrey6
A guy i work with has a Grand am body on a Ram Charger chassis, looks.....well, looks different, he has a hemi in it, with 44" mud tires, its a pure toy, pretty cool though, ill see if I can get some pics of it some time.
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Old 10-02-2003, 11:02 PM   #19
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Thats how its done, you don't convert a car to 4X4, you find a 4X4 that has a chassis of similar size to your body, then you bolt your body on it, thats been done around here for years. I once saw a Nissan Z car with a 4X4 chassis under it, hehe.
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Old 10-02-2003, 11:03 PM   #20
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In your case maybe what, a Suzuki Samuri?
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Old 10-02-2003, 11:05 PM   #21
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that would probably work.
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Old 10-03-2003, 05:50 AM   #22
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Let me say you cannot turn your CRX into a 4x4. No way.

The CRX is FWD unibody, and will not have the ability to handle it.

You can however buy a Jeep, Suzuki, Geo platform, strip it down, then put the CRX body onto it.

The best route would be to go with the Jeep platform because it is an traditional old-school ladder style frame. If you get fortunate to get a rolling chassis, just rip the body off and put the CRX body on It will be a lot of work, and you will still have to modify the frame, to shorten and narrow it up but I don't think there is a chance in hell that you can build a 4x4 that's going to handle anything as severe as a Dirt Road off the CRX platform.
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Old 10-03-2003, 03:59 PM   #23
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i've already got one piece of junk car, i'll take my chances and skip on the jeep idea, lol.
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4-Speed Automatic 4x4


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5.0L V8
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Old 10-03-2003, 07:51 PM   #24
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eh, i guess i'll go with Ken's idea here.. i saw a guy in blockbuster who is big with the whole monster truck scene (first time i'd seen him since i was about 6.. his son and i played baseball together) and he said that his brother has a bunch of stuff in his garage and i should go over there cause he'll either give me or look for a 4wd chasis off an 80s blazer. I'm supposed to go over there and find out sometime this week.
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