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Thread: sapporo challenger 5 speed conversion thread

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    scappoose, or

    sapporo challenger 5 speed conversion thread

    I figured this is good info so i will start a thread instead of doing it in pm. Excuse the spelling, it's late and im having a few beers

    Also note this is only for a starion transmission conversion to a wideblock. A narrowblock cable conversion is not covered.

    Alright for the conquest. BEfore you ull it. You need to make sure you have a wideblock engine.

    The way to figure out if you have found the right block that will bolt up to a starion transmission is to meausre the 2 lower bellhousing bolts. on your engine
    12.25" = narrow block.
    13.25" = wideblock

    A starion is a wideblock, so if your engine happens to be a narrow which is a possibility, you will need to get a transmission from a truck with a narrow block. These are not that strong, but are plenty for a na g54b.

    So back tio the parts.

    First the trans should be fine. they are stout and they only tend to get hard at shifting. Double check by turning the transmission in all gears and check the input shaft play to see if it wobbles much. a tiny bit is fine but if it really moves up and done dont get it, Frankly at 111k it should be fine.

    Frankly I would ask them to let you pull the stuff off you need first to ensure they dont rip the hell out of the sound deadening or cut a clutch line or something.

    Parts you need off the starion

    -You will need the starion brake pedal, as well. You only need the actual pedal itself, you dont need the entire thing. Undo the pin on the pedal and remove it. Make sure to keep the pin washer and cotter pin.

    -Clutch pedal wise you will need the entire pedal assembly unbolted.

    -The master cylinder with the little bolt clip, and holder that holds the resivoir to the brake master resivoir.
    -slide yoke off driveshaft, or the entire driveshaft if you are getting it for free. This is for jyard test fitting prupose.
    -clutch line with slave cylinder. and bolts.
    -flywheel pp throwout and clutch fork - Make sure you have a 6 point 19mm to break the flywheel bolts loose. probably a breaker bar for the crankshaft and one for the crank bolt which is a 21 or 22mm I can never remember. MAKE SURE YOU GET THE FLYWHEEL BOLTS. THEY ARE LONGER THAN THE AUTOMATIC BOLTS AND THEY ARE A SPECIAL BOLT
    -transmission with shifter and surrounding sound deadining and rubber isolator boot with metal ring. Also get the actualy shifter shiftknob and rubber shift boot.
    -ground and transmission mount coming off the trans. Make sure to grab the chassis side of the pigtail for the reverse lights as well if you want to use them.
    -Make sure you grab the small metal lock tabs off the transmission mount rubber outter isolaters. These are what keeps those 4 bolts from going through the rubber outter trans mounts/isolators

    Other things you will need not found on the starion.

    A front half of a driveshaft off a 2.0l 1986 d50 2wd front driveshaft. This was a 2 piece driveshaft truck. I'm sure most 2 piece ones will work off later year trucks. I took a stairon input shaft off a starion driveshaft to ensure the slide yoke slid in. I figure at least 86+ will work. This gives you a bolt in dreiveshaft when you bolt it to the back of the sapporo auto shaft.

    Tools needed for the clutch pedaln installation.

    -A cheap hole saw set. This harbor freight kit comes with the size you will need and since you only need to cut one ohle, it's fine. They suck ass so make sure to keep oil on it when cutting. It takes a while but it iwll get the job done. This will be for the hole for the master cylinder to slide into through the firewall ... mber=38425

    -a drill of some sort to use with the hole saw electric or cordless whatever.
    -To do a very simple transmission mount adapter piece, get some heavy duty angle iron from the local hardware store. There are other methods, but i BELIEVE THIS IS THE EASIEST WHILE STILL MAINTAINING GOOD RIGIDITY.DAMN CAPS.
    -a punch
    - 2 drill bits, a small pilot bit then a larger bit which will work for m8 bolts. I like to go a bit larger than the hole to give me some adjustment as people with limited tools wont get the most precive holes, so a little play will help you get your mounts to fit nicely.
    -starion clutch alignment tool.


    We are gonna do KISS Keep it simple stupid

    Remove the brake pedal, just the pedal portion itself. Remove it from the pin, leave the housing. Sharpen it and use it for a prison shank or a billy club.

    First off, lets start with the clutch pedal. This is the trickiest part of the swap as you have to mark punch and cut 3 holes in your firewall. You also may want to weld or fab a ubber mount to bolt on depending on how secure you want the clutch pedal. I've fabbed up mounts for the top fot he pedal in the past, drilled holes and bolted it in through the wiper access panels, but I dont think it is really needed. I also like to remove the dash and get the wiring out of my way to get a nice clean and easily accessible working area to mark and drill the holes.

    First off, we have to figure out where the master cylinder will go through the firewall. You can use the pedal housing to get a rough idea. This is the most critical point ofthe swap. You can fuck yourself 100% if you dont get this right so take your time. I will take measuremenbts and give to a very good idea of where the center puinch should be for the master cylinder hole saw hole. For now, use your head and examine where the pedal sits. I mocked the pedal up with my hand, used a sharpy and put my pedal where I wanted it, marked center, punched, then drilled the hole with the holesaw bit that was the size of the od of the master cylinder portion that slides through the firewall. See picture below for reference.

    After you get the main hole drilled, you need to drillthe 2 vertical bolt holes for the stud bracket deal that goes through the firewall from the clutch master. Again, take the piece and eyeball it to vertical and evenly spaced, mark the spots to punch and ensure they are evenly spaced from the upper and lower to the master cylinder hole. Once youfeel comfortable, get a drill bit size a size or 2 above the m8 I think it is studded bracket. Punch the marks, and drill. Test fit the master, if you have a issue, get a round file and work it until it fits in right.

    Next bolt it up with the pedal and make sure if all fits right. This may take a little filing of the holes you drilled.

    Once it is all bolted in..... You can decide if you want the upper mount bolte/welded in or not. If you are going to run a heavy duty pressure plate like a act extreme I highly suggest it. If not, I dont think I would worry about it. This is all personal perference as the firewall shouldnt deflect enough to really do anything one way or another.


    Ok, we need to get rid of the auto. It's messy, and has a lot of annoying bullshit on it. Cut the fucing lies coming from the radiator to the trans if you dont plan on using them./ Drain all that god damn atf out. A punch works great as a new drain plug hole along with a 4lbs hammer. I hate these automatics with a passion. They are a big piece of I have no skills at driving boat anchor.

    Put cardboard down before you start and be prepared for at least 7 quarts of nasty smelling atf.

    Unbolt the front portion of the driveshaft off completely. Leave the rear intact.

    Undo your battery, remove the starter.

    unbolt the linkage for the transmission up top. 4lbs hammer works wonders on that no skjillz grocery getter most americans cant even drive a stick star trek shift lever plastic shroud. Or just unbolt it...

    Unbolt the kick down linkage off the carb

    Unbolt the trans, speedo cable, reverse light plug, ground, and auto gayness plug from the trans.

    Make sure everything connected to the autotragic is disconnected

    Unbolt the crossmember.maybe use a jack so you dont rip the last thread out on the trans crossmember as it is coming out..

    Use the trans as a conversation piece to the topic of how fucking gay they are.

    God damn, your car is starting to grow a pair now.

    Remove that stupid crap converter, watch out, it's full of gay driver red blooded oil.

    Remove flex plate, sharpen the teeth and use as a american sized throwing star

    There is probably a stupid little dowl like spacer sleeve thing sticking out of your crakn which helped center the flex plate. Well, manly cars dont need this ebcause they have a flywheel. This needs to be removed if it has it. Ic ant remember if my 81 challenger had it, but all the automatic starions I have dealt with have.

    There are a few ways to deal with it. I usually opt for the grease method with a half inch extension or 3/8 extension with some kind of socket put on it that will barely fit in. Then use a hammer to smack the extension into the grease hole. This will use the grease to push out the sleave. This takes a while, and you have to keep repacking the hole with grease. Frankly the tighter fitting the piece you smack into the hole the better it will work. pop that out and wipe the grease off.

    Get rid ofthe rest of the autofailure oil cooler lines if you cut them,.

    You should have a pretty clean setup right now

    Hopefully you can figure out how to bolt the shit back in. Use some loctite on the flywheel bolts. Dont tighten the pressureplates bolt down very tight. They arent suppose to be hella tight, in fact, if you try to tighten them reallly tight, you will break the bolt. so just snug em down good, but not millwright tight Dont forget to get the clutch alignment tool

    So get that damn thing back together.

    To make the transmission mount adapter, take that piece of angle iron and mark the bolt pattern off the trans mount on the end. drill the holes and bolt the piece of angle to the chassise. Now with the trans in. Use the trans mount holes to mark where you need to make the second set of holes. Drill and mountwith nuts n bolts.

    Figure out the rest, it's pretty simple.

    Here is a reference to get an idea of how the pedal looks mounted,

    Reference picture for the angle iron mounts.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    scappoose, or
    One final note. I cant stress enough of how bad ass a fidanza flywheel on a g54b is. There is no reason not to get one unless you cant afford it. This wiill completely transform a starion or any g54b into a revvy engine that will blast through first gear so fast you wont even no. Throttle response will double to tripple.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    FL's east coast
    THANK YOU!!!! This is exactly what I need. You've managed to give me step by step, first-hand instructions without making me feel like a retard.

    Right now I don't have a flywheel lined up at all, because they took it when they took the engine from the Starion, so.... I'm either going to buy a stock flywheel from the JY that will need to be resurfaced, ect, or dish out 300 smackaroos for a fidanza. I also found a flywheel lightening service that can take an OEM flywheel down to 18lbs. As far as the clutch goes, have you had any expirience with those cheap-azz ebay clutches? I mean, sure it won't be near as good as an ACT stage 3, but $160 for a "stage 3 performance clutch" seems pretty good. Like I said I wont be puttin down any big #s, I just want to get decent stuff at least from the motor back in case I ever want to build a beast starion blocked G54b to drop in.

    Once again, thanks for taking the time to right out this thread. :mrgreen: :tu:

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    FL's east coast
    Well I just measured my engine block and I think its a narrowblock. :x
    So... I guess I'm back to square one. I'm glad I didn't buy that transmission. I was under the impression that only the trucks came with narrowblocks, guess I was wrong. So did the 5sp challengers have wideblocks or narrowblocks and how does the truck tranny differ from the starion tranny as far as gearing goes?

    So I guess I have to think of a solution one way or another. I could swap in the weaker truck transmission which narrows my possibilities of engine swaps in the future. (could use narrowblock 4g63 DOHC I guess) or I could find a whole starion g54b engine set which means I would probably have to buy a whole parts car. ($$$ that I don't have)

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    scappoose, or
    yeah my challenger is I tihnk a wide, but I believe my truck has a narrow.

    \You can still do a 5 speed conversion,y ou iwll just have to source the parts off the truck and use cable instead of hydraulic.

    If you have a few hundred bucks you might be able to source a entire running truck with a manual transmission with a wideblock, or narrow for that matter.

    I have used the cheap ebay 6 puck stage 3. I was very happy with it, especially for the price. Find one that lets you make a offer and offer 134 dollars and you will usually get it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    FL's east coast
    Come to think of it I've had my eye on an older mighty max that I could probably pick up for around $300. I'll have to see if it's even a 2.6 though, I think it's around an '88, but I might have just made that up. I know its a five speed and it's only got around 100-120k. I talked to the guy a while back but had pretty much forgotten about the truck. I'd like to do a whole starion swap like you but around here starions are hard to find and expensive. Plus usually the engine and tranny are the first things to go cause they put em in everything around here. I really love my car and would hate to sell it but if something more solid comes up I might have to let her go. I'd really love a mx73 5speed but all the ones I've found so far are granny-mobiles with auto and lots o miles. I found an 82 civic cvcc hatch on CL for $500 but I'm a RWD guy at heart so, unless its too good to be true I'll keep looking.

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