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Posted: 10/18/2001 2:14:05 PM EDT
Hey, I am looking to do a few custom things to my car to make it stand out a bit, and I was wondering if you guys can help me out. I have a 2001 Dodge Stratus R/T coupe, and I am looking to lower it, put new wheels on it, and use some brake caliper paint. My main question is about the paint. Anyone use it on their calipers? After seeing how cool the red ones look on ZO6's and Bullit's, I want to add that look to my car. How does it hold up? Also, there are no kits to lower my car...can it still be lowered by a professional? Reason I am asking is the car is/looks too high where it is right now. It bothers me quite a bit, infact, some people ask if I raised it. What is a safe amount to cut off? And the wheels, well, those are very straight forward :-) NO MY CAR IS NOT TURNING INTO A RICE BURNER!!! I swear to you all I will not put a 4 inch muffler on it and add neon lights. I hate those cars. I am also only going to use american parts. Adding a flowmaster this weekend, and thinking about doing a custom dual exaust setup on my car. I'd just need to re-route some pipes to the other side, and cut a notch in the bumper. Shouldn't be hard, and would look badass. What do you think?
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 2:49:12 PM EDT
As for the calipars, use a high heat paint, like engine paint, it will handle the heat. As for lowering, spend some money, do it right, drop spindles etc... A good auto parts store will help you with this, no problem. With that said, I'd scrap the whole idea, and build a older chev or some thing, but I'm than I'm..umm.. er... a little bit past 40 now. But to each his own, if you like it do it! Good luck!
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:05:14 PM EDT
What is a safe amount to cut off?
View Quote
0.0 inches. I've driven a few cars (mostly honduhs) that were lowered by cutting or heating the springs. They ride like a buckboard, front-end alignment becomes "iffy," handling changes (for the worst) and some parking lots will be off limits. As Norm mentioned, do it right. Eddie
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:12:20 PM EDT
Dont worry, I'm getting set up with a 79 Vette wtih an L82 350 ci engine and 40k miles in the next few weekends. The paint was just redone also, nice and silver. Plus, my dads got a 95' that we tinker around with as well. Basically, I just want to lower the car to improve handling and looks. Maybe a rear sway bar as well. That way, I dont have to take my foot off the gas when I turn...heh. Plus, theres just somethign about seeing those red calipers that looks damn cool. Saw them on a Bullit today, and I told myself I had to do that. Yeah, this stuff is high heat stuff, made for the calipers. Bright red, and from what I remember, stands up to 900 degree heat. Plus, I just want to make it stand out from the crowd. After this, Ill work on the performance mods, thinking about a turbo kit. I dont want to touch the 79', because IF I get it, I would want to keep it original, if I did anything, It would be reversable, like a bolt on type accessory, or OEM replacement parts, stuff like that. If my dad decides to get the ZR1 wheels on his C4, were going to see how the brake caliper paint holds up on my car. If it works, its going on the C4 as well.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:15:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/18/2001 3:13:19 PM EDT by Marksman14]
Originally Posted By LS1Eddie:
What is a safe amount to cut off?
View Quote
0.0 inches. I've driven a few cars (mostly honduhs) that were lowered by cutting or heating the springs. They ride like a buckboard, front-end alignment becomes "iffy," handling changes (for the worst) and some parking lots will be off limits. As Norm mentioned, do it right. Eddie
View Quote
Oops, I didn't literally mean "cut off". I guess I could have re-worded it to sound better. If I lower it, I will have it done right, I dont want to screw around with slamming the car. I know, I will have to be alot more careful when I park, not to rip off the bottom of my car...going down steep driveways...I am somewhat accustomed to this, from driving my dads C4. Hell, if we back his car straight down the driveway, the front of the car moves up about 2 inches, and a horrible scraping noise occurs. We only did that once...and will never do it again. Just do it at an angle, no biggie. I drive/park my car like its an inch off the ground anyways, so its not that big of a deal.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:19:24 PM EDT
Check out [url]http://www.eibach.com/[/url] to see if they have a spring kit for your car. That'll give you a correctly set up suspension. If they have them for your application give RD Enterprises a call at 800-683-2890 For caliper paint, check out racing supplies web sites, like [url]http://www.ogracing.com[/url] I run the ZR-1 rims on my TA [url]http://www.supercharger.net/members/david[/url] 17x9.5 front with 285/40-17 tires, 17x11 rear with 315/35-17.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:21:46 PM EDT
You might want to get in touch with your local chapter of SCCA. Go to a couple autocrosses/races, talk to the people there. You might find someone running your make/model, and learn a lot for free. I have always found them to be good people.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:22:52 PM EDT
I'm a fan of the "looks stock, hauls ass" school of thought, and I think painting your brake calipers is stupid as hell (just my opinion though). I don't like seeing cars that have fancy stickers on them, bright red calipers, 5 spoke wheels, 18 inch tires, knowing that my dads stock cadilliac can give these cars a run for their money. Spend the money for the viper v10 and see if you can cram it in there. ;) As you see, I prefer to make the car go fast, stop fast, handle well. then maybe make it stand out a little. Your money though, and I agree with everyone else, get it lowered by a professional if you choose to do that, and good luck.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:36:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/18/2001 3:30:47 PM EDT by Marksman14]
I thought painting the calipers was stupid too, but hell, It looks cool on a ZO6 and a bullit, so I figure for the 4.99 it costs, why the hell not :-) I will have it lowered professionally, and have already done a performance brake job on the car. It stops pretty damn nice. NO STICKERS!!! NO RICE BURNING MATERIALS!!! I will not stand for that. I didnt even consider painting the calipers until I saw them on some american muscle. Oh, the wheels are not chrome, they are brushed aluminum, very very plain 5 spokes. Hell, my current wheels are 5 spokes, 17inchers too. The new ones will be 17's as well, but they will be about an inch wider, to help with the handling, and to put more rubber to the ground. Im not doing it do make it look "better". I just want it to look different than other R/T's. No body kits, no ground FX, none of that bullshit. Other than the calipers, im doing everything for a reason, better performance. It will still look stock, dont worry. Im not going to lower it any drastic amount, like I said, my car looks "lifted". So I'm going to put the car where it should be. LS1Eddie, you a vette fan? Name sure sounds like it... And I wouldnt save money for a Viper :-) Im 16, and am spending more than I should anyways. Especially if I end up getting the 79' Vette. Everything else I do on the car will be performance oriented, and not "visible". Intake, exaust, Turbo-charger, and nitrous would be nice. Hell, with a full shot of nitrous, I'd be pushing about 475 horsepower...
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:41:34 PM EDT
David, that is one hell of a trans-am. NICE work. That is one serious car. since thats a 96, does it have an LT1 under the hood? Once again, very nice car. The 11 inch rears must look very sweet.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:43:43 PM EDT
Don't forget that merely lowering the car's CG isn't enough - you have to go wider, too. Using polyurethane bushings throughout the car is a no-brainer, too. If you can get welded subframe connectors, go for it - any flex in the chassis can hamper performance. But, realize that something, somewhere, has to flex - a friend of mine couldn't keep T-tops in his 86 Camaro because the body would flex since the chassis couldn't, and the T-top would pop out. Taller wheels benefit you in 2 ways. 1, they allow for larger rotors to fit behind them, which gives better braking, and 2, their tires have shorter sidewalls which means less deflection under a load. You will notice a "firmer" ride, though, because shorter sidewalls also means less tire to absorb road shocks.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:53:16 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 3:57:18 PM EDT
You can get gold 100 spoke rims and hydraulics, Tinted windows and a 5,000,000 watt sound system, then you'll have one that really stands out!!! j/k [:D] Ok, seriously, I too am from the "look stock, go fast" school of thought. I dunno much about the dodge stratus but I think you could add a supercharger or turbocharger to wake up the motor. About the suspension: Good aftermarket springs, shocks, and subframe connectors and you should be good to go.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 4:05:04 PM EDT
Yeah, It was called the "stratus fear", and it had 19's on em, a nice scoop, and a decent paint job. It really did look badass, I loved the side exaust too. I dont want to turn it into that though, just a few things to make it unique. I was thinking maybe a ram-air type scoop that was actually functional would be very cool, but I dont even know if that would work. Dont worry, I thought his air scoop was ugly as hell too. I would have mine match the color of my car, and be a little less obvious. Yes, I know. Its wrong wheel drive. Sorry, it was a requirement set by my mom for my first car, and it pissed me off more than you could imagine. So I figured get one of the best looking/semi fast FWD's out there, plus, its a tiptronic. Lots of fun. I'm not going to really race it or anything like that. I would just like to crush some egos with my "front wheel drive V6 stratus" :-)
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 4:08:25 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 4:10:15 PM EDT
Here is a website where you can get some ideas: [url]http://www.asog.net/[/url] I'm sure that they can point you in the right direction.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 4:27:46 PM EDT
Marksman - It used to have an LT1, it now has an LT4 (originally found in the 96 Corvette Grand Sport) that's been stroked to 396 ci. When I did the new motor I got a good deal on that block, so since it's basically a 4-bolt LT1, I went with it. I need to update the site.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 6:45:06 PM EDT
Thats sweet...my dad had the opportunity to get a 96 silver "limited edition" C4 with an LT4 in it, but he really wanted a convertable. Shame too, it came with ZR1 rims, it was really nice. I guess removable glass tops werent good enough for the old man :-) Considering that the performance of LT4 equipt vettes are so damn close to that of the ZR1's (LT5's) its sort of a shame, cause thats about 0-60 in 5 flat, stock.
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