Since i replaced my rear speakers with much better sounding ones, i decided to do the same for the front. So i bought some 35W RMS Sony 13 cm speakers which i figured would marginally fit to the door holes without much mess, while being a bit louder compared to my old 10 cm. As it proved they are very shallow, and they just cleared the window when it was open.
The next problem was that the door panels had their plastic moisture protection removed at some point in the past, and they were either rotten (the right one) or bumpy like potato chips after they were wet and dried lots of times. To correct this i dampened them once again and pressed them to get as straight as possible. Done that twice, and it actually had good results. The next step was to apply some polyester resin with fiberglass fabric to keep them straight and protect them from any new moisture or disintegrating, and i did apply some at the speakers holes so to reinforce them. Also took some plastic sheet and taped it on the door to help moisture drain inside the door and not on the panels.
BUT Gary is always aware of what i am doing, and influenced me to install a small amp as well . I am not fan of huge sound, but i want to listen clearly to what is playing. So i also ordered an ALPINE KTP445U 45W rms amplifier. I did manage to fit it at the passenger foot well, while moving around some of my other relay panels, which were placed there. Unfortunately my Kenwood BT44U source had no line level ports, so i had to go to the speaker level outputs. However this amp harness comes with RCA connectors which are supposed to get cut, and the wires spliced on the source's speaker outputs. I did not want to do that, so i turned the Kenwood's single cable outputs to RCAs ! Of course on the amp's setting speaker level input was chosen. Also as the manual says, the gain in this setting can not go above 3 o clock on the dials, since the signals are preamplified. Verified this with the multimeter method !
Added a FPD: I never knew that this part existed, until i stumbled upon a really annoying minor problem. When i started the car for some minutes i could hear a repetitive knocking sound, which was coming from the braided fuel lines. This was caused by the injectors opening and closing hard while idling, where most of the fuel stays in the circuit and is not injected in the engine. So i found this Radium Technology Fuel Pulse Damper which is actually boost referenced, so it can accept the raised fuel pressure when the turbo is at its full boost. What it actually is, is a spring loaded diaphragm, which dampens the pulses caused by the injectors. Ideally it should be installed on the fuel rail but i did not have enough space to do so. So i ordered some parts to attach it directly on the fuel filter. Now the pulse when touching the lines can be felt, but at least it is not heard any more. More than that it is supposed to normalize the fuel pressure oddities when the engine is running. I guess it does what it is advertised
Removed the foil cover from spark cables: At some point, while in an almost dark place having a look at the running engine, i noticed that the MSD spark cables were sparking on the cylinder head. I had never seen that before, not even on the dyno, so i felt that something was wrong with the MSDs. After having a bit of thought, i decided to remove the heat-emp protection foil i had them wrapped, and so the problem was solved. It seems that the sparks were caused by induction since the protective sleeves were pure aluminum foil on their outer surface.
Replaced the ac hose: After filling the system with r134 refrigerant the hose (that goes over the cylinder head) blew up. It seems that it was old and brittle, plus it was routed very close to the turbo. So i made a new one, which was cut a bit shorter so it passed behind the oil cap instead of the old way, which gave it a good distance from the turbo/downpipe. Also the support bracket was moved into a new position, and now the (ugly) hose goes over the engine without touching anywhere ! If only the AC was working well.. It goes down to 8*C. I tried to find some r12a hydrocarbon refrigerant that is said is much better than r134 on a r12 system, but nobody ships it to Greece .. or if they do the postage cost is insane ! Anyone from Sweden to help ?? I found the refrigerants here: https://www.frostycool.se/
Radiator Temp Switch: After lots and lots of hours of search, i managed to find a different temperature - same threaded dual temp switch for controlling the e-fan. The old one was kicking in the slow speed at 82*C and turned off at 77*C. The high speed was turned on at 92*C and off at 87*C. However even at a hot day in the traffic where the temp gauge was closing to the red zone, the high speed never turned on, it was working always on low. I think that this happened because i have placed the temp switch at the 1/3 of the height of the radiator, while it should have been higher. The 264 radiator never had place to bolt such a switch, while it is much bigger than the original. So at the current position of the switch temps never go up to 92*C. For this reason i ordered a FACET 7.5630 switch, which has the same low kick in temp, but the high is much lower, turns on at 87*C and turns off at 82*C. Hope this will solve the problem. The next move if this does not work a VW switch that is 70-75, 80-75 *C, but that feels really low. Turbo cars never like hot days, VOLVOs don't, neither do i
Here is my amazing testing facility for the temp switches
Turbo circulator temp switch: Also replaced the temp switch of my turbo circulator with timer (after turning off the engine) with a lower temp one. This one is a single switch with two connectors, not double as the radiator one. However its is different threaded (M14x1,5) than the previous. Had two options below 82*C (t-stat): an ALFA light switch 60537203 (7.4079 Facet) which is turned on at 45*C, or a VOLVO fan switch 3211204-7 (7.5142 Facet) which is 72-67*C. The first seems really low temp, so i went for the second, plus since the VOLVO one is a fan switch should have more reinforced contacts in it.. To remind you, the circuit turns on the circulator after i switch off the engine, for a given time (0-10 mins adjustable) and only when the engine is warm (in this case when it is 72*C). The 45* could also work fine, but for the reason i wrote above i went for the VOLVO one.
Steering Wheel: It was time for me to make some extra legroom, since i usually drove the car with my right leg stuck between the dash panel and the (smallest available here) stock Volvo steering wheel. So i decided to go for a medium (63mm) dished leather 350mm (a bit smaller than stock) Sparco steering wheel with code L550 in black finish. Given that i also used a Momo hub for pairing it to the car, it did the work ! My right leg is now free (more free at least) to move around! I have to get used to the increased distance of the lights and wipers switches, but this is very minor. For anyone thinking a deep dished wheel, this may be a bigger problem. Of course i added a pranking moose horn button, which as it was expected boosted my hp about 7,8 whp (thanks DB for your wonderful button). I have to mention that this button, since it is designed to have a contact on its side, only needs the cable that comes off the center of the hub to be connected. Just take care in which of two rear contacts you connect it, otherwise your horn will sound constantly. Trial and error method.
Also to make sure that the turn signal cancellation would work fine, i filed and snug fitted a piece of ertalon between the two metallic "rails" of the hub, since it is said that it the gap is left as is, the signal cancellation has some funny behavior. For extra peace of mind i filed a bit the sharp edges of the "rails".
Coilovers: The big decision was made. After lots of calculations, searching, but unfortunately no access to corner weight scales as i was planning to try matching the dampers to the springs (http://turbobricks.com/forums/showthread.php?t=333479) i got the parts needed for this conversion. I opted for Einbach 225lbs/inch 13 inch rear (1300.500.0225) and 300 lbs/inch 10 inch front xt barrel (1000.2530.0300). Most of the hardware was bought from Ben (Kalphenke racing llc) and the camber plates from TXR performance. Also got Quick Steer Roll Correction adapters with Ackermann Adjustment. Gas filled dampers from KONI part numbers 26 1129Sport rear and 8641 1245Sport front (stock length). Fronts are adjusted without removing them, while the rears have to be removed, or at least one end, but this is relatively easy..
For the rear modification, i found it easier to move the mushroom shaped spring holder on the lower side. In this way in my opinion the spring is located better.
Unfortunately as i found out i had to cut a portion of the strut towers in order to reach the bolts to adjust the camber plates in real time during alignment procedure. The other option was to have the setting estimated when the strut assembly is out of the car, then bolt it, then check, and if wrong take it out again, re-adjust .. and do the same from the start, which was no option for me. I tried to keep the material removal to minimal, plus i kept my strengthening plates on top of camber plates which are already thick, to make sure nothing bends under load.
The right hand side strut (which i had looted from another car) was not straight, but was not possible to measure it when it was out of the car, neither visible. When i installed it i saw that for the same coilover nut position, the tire was touching the nut, while on the driver's side was not happening the same. So i was forced to modify my old strut, which solved the problem.
I also cut the koni bump stops about 1 cm each, since they were bigger than i needed. There is some info about how bump stops behave when compressed. Here is the chart:
TIP: Remember to leave the car sit on its own weight for the springs to settle at their final position before alignment.
Also another thing to note is that when installing the quick steer adapters on stock length struts, when the car is jacked up, the steering wheel can not turn a lot, since the quick steer adapters hit the ball joint bolts on the top of the wishbone. I talked about that with Ben and Gary, but this would be a problem only when the car is jacked up. However if you expect to have so much droop while the wheels are steered (it is an unlike situation on normal driving conditions), you probably should limit the wishbone movement (droop) by strapping them with steel cables. Finally another comment is that the steering rack rods are pushed at their lower limit when the car is jacked, but they are not stressed above this limit. However if you want to remove/install the outer ball joints of the steering rack you may have to consider doing it while the car sits on its own weight, or jack the wishbone a bit.
For those who are thinking to use such big (and wide) rims as me, keep in mind that you can not use any other steering hole option on quick steer adapters than stock (to make steering angles greater and speed up steering) since the tire hits on the sway bar at full lock even at second hole! However they surely correct the wishbone angles and is a great upgrade for lowered cars, in order to fix the roll center which is messed up due to lowering.
I was surprised to find out that the car is so well balanced, especially left to right. I had it measured it only by the adjustment of the coilover nuts to be even from side to side. I wonder if this is a result of the presence of the sway bars (if someone knows let me know). As for the front-rear balance, i opted in the past going for a bit more aggressive stance, having the front a bit lower than the rear. This resulted to 55% front 45% rear weight distribution. Note that this values are with a full tank of gas, and some things in the trunk such as the car jack, fire extinguisher, the cross (for unbolting wheels) and a few more minor things.
I have found the car tail to be a bit unstable even at high speeds when stepping on the gas on a straight line, however i feel that this is the result of old tyres. I will replace them, and if the instability continues, i will do a 50-50 weight distribution. Another thing to notice is that with almost a degree of camber in the front, it feels planted much more than in the past. Last but not least is that eibach springs seem to settle more after some drives, so i have to readjust the height to where it was when i aligned the car.
Radiator: The good old 264 radiator, decided it wouldn't like to suffer any other punishment on the car and started leaking. I went the custom aluminum way, despite brass-copper cells are said to have better heat conductivity. So since i made this radiator from the scratch, i added -just in case- one more bung for the temperature sensor up high, and the other in the position it was previously. This cell has many more water passages compared to the 264's, and i am satisfied by its performance. It was cut down from its original size a bit and added strengthening plates on top and bottom. Also made a new round oil catch can and replaced its steel mesh filter with a DNA cone filter, which actually catches the oil particles, in comparison to the old one which made a mess. Finally, i examined the option to go for a Spal fan configuration (either single or dual). There were two problems with this thought though: They can not be dimmed so if i wanted 2 speeds (due to noise) i would have to use two different smaller fans, and surprisingly the stock fans actually produce more flow than the Spals !! Their rated cfm was 1/3 less than the stock for the same size single fan (and much less when used with 2 smaller fans). I tried to measure this particular Volvo fan (38cm) and on top speed it produced more than 4000cfm blowing at maximum 3280ft/min !! I really would have bet on the opposite, but measurements proved me wrong !
Yes, the first tests sound really good and crisp ! I was a bit unlucky with the source's outputs which were not line out, and with the speakers i found to buy on that day (Sony) that i was in a hurry, but the result is miles better than the old setup .. (MB Quart and Pioneer)
BTW for anyone that is trying to fit such speakers, the rear are SONY XS-FB6920E and the front SONY XS-FB1330. For the front, the plastic cover should be trimmed 4mm on upper and lower parts of the X shape .. right and left need to be unmodified
Hey thanks for your comment in regards of my greek , still learning a lot. Your brick is reaally coming out nice. I wanted to go today to mine but it is cold and soggy
Hopefully next week will be hotter.
you gave me a great idea to replace the speakers and to reinforce the panels.
Where did u learned AGLLIKA?
Your grammar is perfect.
@brickcupra Thanks a lot pal I assume you have taken your brick for a spin !! Well, i studied for a bit in the UK, so this is how i know some English .. Unfortunately i am better at writing than speaking, where i sound like a proper Greek .. lol .. At least American English is much more understandable than some Brits speaking, especially when they come from specific places !!
Reinforcing the panels is going to make them last for another 50+ years. Just a note: if you use polyester, don't be scared when you see the front side of the panel that the "leather" (or whatever this material is called), becomes wrinkled and greasy. Polyester has some seriously unhealthy ingredients in it, which for a few days soak everything and deform the front material of the panel. If you however leave it for a few days alone, it will dry up and become normal again.. Plus wear some protection (long sleeves, glasses, gloves) when trimming/opening up holes on dried polyester, or you will have a 2-day itch as a gift
The Queen's English, proper, is easy to understand because it's pronounced correctly. Sadly, only about 10% of people in England know how to speak English close to properly. I was shocked when I went to live there, the education standards are pretty low compared to what I'm used to. I would say most Americans (but not all, try Nashville, for eg) have mild enough accents to be easily understood, but as you say, there's plenty of parts of England where I'd stand no chance of understanding a single word of the gibberish they speak! So don't feel too bad, it's not your fault
I was having the same thoughts to preserve my door panels, but ended up finding perfect used ones for very cheap. Still, this isn't a bad idea on good panels to prevent them from future deterioration. Where mine are straight I wonder if just a coating of resin to keep moisture out would do the trick?
I was talking with the body shop who is repainting my BMW E30 and they informed me that so often people remove the plastic door membranes when doing aftermarket speakers or what have you and never replace/reseal it and this allows, like you said, moisture to migrate into the door panel "paper fiber-like material" and cause all kinds of issues. I had never given that a thought, but I have witnessed just how much damage this can do. And the factory plastic can still be had from Volvo for around $15.00 US. I just ordered them for my 240.
@MSGGrunt: Really ? They still exist ? Never thought of ordering them .. lol .. I guess i went the "el cheapo" way !! The resin alone will for sure make the panels waterproof and harder. But if you for some reason try to bend it or so, i assume it will crack. But still it will be much better than original. In any way though if you have the factory plastics installed i think there will be no problem for a long time even if you just install it without any other fuzz ! When you fit them, post some pics to see how they are .. for any other who is interested
@Gary: Yay !! It is going to be a heavy box this time .. but i hope a nice (and last big) upgrade that i will do. I keep saying that for years now ..
@Sander: Thanks a lot man !!
@FreeEMSFred: Exactly as you say !! I am going to have some practice with Gary, who will hopefully come this way soon... to see Greece in person, test the car and teach me some proper English. This guy has a lot of very satisfying phrases shot at me, which i have never heard of, but at 90% of the time i understand their meaning On the other hand the UK people if you say "patato" instead of "potato", in most of the cases they have no clue what you mean ..
Just don't learn the American way of saying "niche" it's just sickeningly horrible to hear I struck the tomato tomato issue in the states... I learned to speak "American" (because it is different enough) in just a few weeks so my In'n'out burger orders would go more smoothly