Dodge Challenger Shenanigans

I’m a car/truck nut, always have been. I think it was something I picked up from my dad as he was a truck nut, especially old Dodge trucks. When he died he left a backyard full older Dodge trucks in various states of disrepair, except for the 1972 Flatbed, which is about 80% restored, driveable, and registered with the American Truck Historical Society. We would always stop and look at old cars and trucks, and he would tell me stories about the old stock car racers from the 50’s and 60’s. It took root and I always vowed I would get a muscle car. And I did! Sort of….

I ended up the proud financer of a 2012 Dodge Challenger R/T, with a 6 speed manual transmission, painted in “Pitch Black.” It’s a muscle car, but it’s a modern muscle car. Not as fast as the V8 Fords and Chevy’s, you want the SRT8 over the R/T to think of competing with those, but still plenty fast…at least at first. I wouldn’t mind having more speed, a new R/T Scat pack, a full on SRT8, or as long as I am dreaming how about a Challenger Hellcat….

Anyway, I digress. It was not long after I drove off the lot in my Challenger that I was bitten by the Mod bug. For those of you that don’t know cars, the Mod bug bites you and you immediately want to start changing things, adding aftermarket parts, making the car faster, handle different, look different, etc. So, I started saving and I started planning. My plans are coming along nicely.

First off was a dash mat and floor mats. A dash mat in the desert is an absolute necessity, the sun will bleach and crack your dashboard in no time.

Next came the skip shift eliminator. Some modern manuals will lock out second and third at certain low RPM’s, making you shift directly to 4th. It’s supposed to be a gas/emissions saving thing for stop and go traffic, when in reality it’s just a distraction. So I put a little 25.00 resister in and eliminated it, as the name says.

When I needed new tires I also bought new rims. 🙂

Next up was the seat covers, especially after the Halloween candy incident. *shudders*

This summer I splurged; I put on a Cervinis Ram Air Intake with a Charger air tube and new brake rotors and pads. Not sure if it does much, probably could have saved a little money on a different intake. Plus now I need to reconfigure the crank case line….ah well. The brake rotors were needed as I had warped mine…..

Just a few weeks ago I out on an oil catch can, and cutting the lines wrong for it made me realize I should have purchased the lines that are already measured and braided with stainless steel. So… I have those on order.

Also on order, a Barton Industries shifter
I went with the white shift knob to give it that old school look 🙂 I almost went Hurst, as they are a little cheaper and used to have a solid name, but the reviews from people that have had them for a few years are not good. Blown out bushings, broken shift arms, etc.

Not on order, but next up will be exhaust and a tuner. Going to put some JBA shorty headers on along with a JBA Catback exhaust and a Diablo Trinity tuner. It’s a lot of work to put the shorty headers on, as you have to lift the engine block an inch off the mounts, so I am taking it down to Lancaster to R&E Racing. They have done it before, know the price down to the cent and the time down too.

After that, probably go ahead and fix that crank case line by making my own air tube and installing a fitting for it. At the same time I would like to replace the 80mm throttle body with an 85mm throttle body. I’ll put the money out for a custom tune after that. I will need it to take advantage of the exhaust and intake mods.

When the more tame and easier bolt on performance mods done, I plan on focusing on the suspension. An Eibach Pro-Plus kit will serve me nicely. Heavy sway bars front and back, new bushings, new springs, new struts and the car will be lower by about 1.5″ in the front and 1.7″ in the back.

If, after all this is done, life hasn’t altered too drastically and if I have the cash (two big things to ask for, I know) I will have new, ported and polished heads put on with a new performance cam shaft. Again, a custom tune will have to accompany this. The parts alone are around 3,000.00 and I will have to have the install and tune done, so I know I am looking at a big chunk of cash.

Or I could say screw all this, save up close to $10,000.00 and have a supercharger installed……..

Categories: Cars | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Dodge Challenger Shenanigans

  1. My “mod bug” bite was a bit less severe than yours – the only thing I really ever did to my truck was instal a blinking gear shift knob, that could pulse in time to the music. 😀

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