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Learned my Plymouth lesson... now a clip question

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Lono, Dec 7, 2012.

  1. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    So I bought a 80 lebaron for the 318 auto planned for my 50 plymouth 2 door special deluxe. I've tried a search and cant find a definitive answer so I need to put it out to those who know....

    Does a 80 labaron clip fit a 50 plymouth?

    *(I know an easy answer is go out and measure you lazy ass, but my plymouth hasn't arrived yet so I havent anything to measure...);)

    Thanks in advance guys.
     
  2. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 10,965

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    An '80 LeBaron has a bolt on subframe with transverse torsion bars that are bent 90* to attach to lower control arms.

    The body structure (unit body design) that it bolts to is totally different in configuration from the chassis of your '50 Plymouth.

    The Mopar unit is most easily adapted to chassis that had leaf/spring solid axle front suspension......consequently it used to be, about 20 years ago, a popular swap on F100 Ford pickups and similar chassis under other makes.

    You COULD put it under your Plymouth by grafting a new front frame section with either channel or rectangular tube side members. But what's the point of that? Any advantages of unitized front suspension just "bolting" on is totally lost.

    Further, the Mopar clip wheel tread (or 'track') is too wide for your Plymouth body/fenders. The '50 Plymouth only has a 55" front tread, one of the narrower cars out there.

    The powertrain will work well enough, but I think you will find what I have said about the clip is true and will cause you to change your plans on that part of the project.

    Actually, the Mopar front suspensions of that era drive very well and there is little to be gained by doing major chassis surgery. Do a disc brake conversion and change the upper shock mount from the upper control arm to a frame bracket and you will have a very good driver.

    Ray
     
  3. Voodoowagon
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 353

    Voodoowagon
    Member
    from Fort worth

    On our 54 we went with a rebuild kit from Kanter and a brake conversion kit from Scarebird, still months away from having it on the road but was a easy switch compared to grafting a new front suspension on to yours.
     
  4. Voodoowagon
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 353

    Voodoowagon
    Member
    from Fort worth

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  5. hkestes
    Joined: May 19, 2007
    Posts: 539

    hkestes
    Member
    from Plano, TX

    What Hnstray said.

    I am currently on my second 48 Plymouth coupe. The first I had a Nova subframe professionaly installed, the second I just rebuilt the stock suspension and installed Oldaddy's disc brake kit. The difference in the two is minimal if you would even notice it.

    I also had to rebuild the suspension on the Nova clip so there really was no advantage except to the guy I paid to instll it.

    Stick with the stock suspension, you will be surprised how good it rides.

    As for installing the 318 just move it over about 1.5 inches to the passenger side so that your exhaust will clear the steering box. Chrysler did this exact thing on the majority of their V8 powered cars during the muscle car era. The other opion would be to go to a rach and pinion set up which moves the steering box off the top of the frame.
     
  6. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    Incredible reading, thank you Ray.

    Okay folks, time to really think this thing through. I did want to drop it 3 inches so the fatman / disk method sounds like its future.

    Thanks again from a Mopar Newbie
     
  7. inliner2318
    Joined: May 9, 2008
    Posts: 299

    inliner2318
    Member

    second that. fenders, wheelwells, and radiator already mounted. If you want disc brakes there are companies that make kits. done what you are considering and the car is still in peices many years later. Only thing bad is lowering the front. Minimal space between lower a-arm and frame. could makes some tubular lower arms or cut the king pin and move up (not reccomended) like they did back in the day. I would consider mustang II or S-10 front clip over nova/camaro. more around and parts are cheap, if you go that route.
     
  8. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    I thought the steering box on an S10 would have been sitting in the grill area.
    I have one of those too.
    I'm busy over building waiting for this thing to arrive. Best I shut off the computer and give the brain a rest.
     
  9. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
    Member

    i took the spring mounting plates off the top of the a-arm and put them on the bottom, then i put on some ford aerostar coils. that dropped the front about 4 or 5 inches. i also remounted the shocks and put on a front swaybar of off a heep cherokee. the thing handles like a go-cart now. next is the cavalier rack and the disc brakes from the cherokee.

    the only thing that sucks is the tires rub the ends of the swaybar before they hit full lock. i may need to do some surgery on the swaybar.

    these pics are with stock spring, it was to soft and low. the aerostar's lifted it about a inch

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    You didnt switch out your uprights?
     
  11. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
    Member

  12. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    Alignment afterward?:eek:
     
  13. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
    Member


    it needs it, but im waiting til i do the rack swap. the bump steer is horrible
     
  14. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    Round and round I go. I think I'm back to step one ( that is after dragging it home that is): Keep the stock front end; use drop uprights and install some disks.

    thanks everyone.
     
  15. So the Aerostar springs work on mopars too?? I tried looking into it before but I was always told the dimensions of the spring were wrong... What part number were your springs??
    Thanks, and I'm sorry to derail your thread
     
  16. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    I've had a great discussion with gimpyshotrods about dropping the front.
    Fatman uprights can be used to drop 3.5 without the additional mods to the front end. In addition, the coils can be cut up to 2 inches WITHOUT creating bumpsteer.
    While I dont plan on going that crazy, I do plan about 4 - 4.5 inches.

    I'm interested about Aerostar coils as well.
     
  17. I'm a Mopar newbie as well. Just finished a 49. I did a G-body clip (same as S10) I think it worked out rather well. Drives fantastic.
    Here's a pic tack in before gussettes.
    Track width is bang on.
    [​IMG]
     
    martin53 likes this.
  18. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
    Member

    The car has bump steer already, lowering doesn't cause it. The factory steering has zero thought put into it. If you have worked vw's , it's like them but worse.

    I would run the aero's, they ride a lot better than the 60 yr old worn out stockers.
     
  19. i don't think the s10 box would be too far foward and if track width is close might be worth looking into. Disc's from scarebird and some shorter springs would be my first choice and before i spent the money on dropped uprights i would really want to drive one with them because how a car drives with them really differs and are we talking 50+ miles at a time or 5 just into town for a burger as i have owned some really cool looking vehicles that after 20 miles sucked.
     
  20. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 8,994

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    Aspen, Volare, 5th Ave, Mirada etc suspension all the same, all on the lousy side. Also very bulky. Also obsolete, have not been made since the 80s.

    I hate to admit it, being a Mopar man, but that is one of the worst choices for a suspension swap. There are lots better and more modern designs out there.

    I also agree, the original suspension is a better bet.
     
    need louvers ? likes this.
  21. need louvers ?
    Joined: Nov 20, 2008
    Posts: 12,912

    need louvers ?
    Member

    And way too wide for these caes too.
     
  22. Camaro/Nova is by far the easiest to graft on to the 50 frame, as we've been over. Lining the bottoms of the rails up will lower the car 4-5" without TOUCHING the suspension. The LeBaron subframe is going to be a "plate-fest" and will still be too wide and probably too high.
     
  23. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member



    Isn't that the 46/49 Dodge posted on kijiji right now?

    Mines a 50 plymouth and it may be a sheet metal issue for me.
     
  24. The S 10 - G body steering box IS to far forward and requires some fab work, but not a big deal. I'm still running all the stock sheet metal and a cross frow rad.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  25. 46binder
    Joined: Jan 21, 2008
    Posts: 245

    46binder
    Member
    from Kenosha,Wi

    I did a Dakota clip on my 49 wayfarer.
     
  26. chubbie
    Joined: Jan 14, 2009
    Posts: 2,275

    chubbie
    Member

    i like the s10 swap, looks clean and fast. might make a lot of difference what kind of shape the original front end is in
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
  27. n847
    Joined: Apr 22, 2010
    Posts: 2,695

    n847
    Member

    I'm as big of a tight wad as they come and I just plain ole cant afford to buy these parts for my car so I have to make them. I'm using the links below to upgrade my front suspension this winter. I'm not sure if I'll get to the R&P or not but all this can be done for under $400.00 maybe closer to $300.00based on the prices I have found. That is assuming you are willing to make the brackets yourself! If not tack on another $300 or so. I'll also be buying the Aerostar springs.

    Heres a way to drop the front on the cheap! (same method that was already mentioned in this thread)
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=685246

    Heres a shock relocation on the cheap!

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=215548&highlight=shock+mounts+mopar

    Heres a disc brake conversion on the cheap!
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=702258

    Heres the Cavilear R&P steering swap on the cheap!
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=140107&highlight=rack+pinion
     
  28. Lono
    Joined: May 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,655

    Lono
    Member

    After days of reading, and I DO MEAN days, I've got a game plan for the build.

    On the underside: Areostar coils, fatman drop uprights, scarebird disk kit.
    Rear end from an S10 4 x 4, 3 inch lowering blocks.

    Motor/ tranny and all I can pull from my lebaron (318 auto- power brake master)

    Roof: 7 inch chop in front 8.5 in back, shave and so on.

    Thanks everyone for some interesting options and opinions.
     
  29. Watch the lowering blocks. A 3" block with the stock springs with a 15' wheel will put you well below the scrub line, even a 16" wheel might be iffy..
     
  30. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
    Member

    if you dont mind me asking, why the s10 rear? already have it?
    cherokee has the exact same hub bore if you are running stock wheels and is the same width and bolt pattern, and i wouldnt trust a s10 rear behind a v8. and you can find d35 rears for free most of the time and the corp. and d44 axles for about a hundred bucks. or for couple hundred you can get a sploder 8.8 rear with disc.

    sign up and post a wanted add here http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/15-wanted/
    jeff
     

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