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Old 18 Aug 2010, 04:00 pm
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Default New member, need suggestions

First off, let me start by saying Hi to everyone on the forum!

I recently acquired a 2003 PT Cruiser GT as a gift, and since then I've altogether dumped my Ford Focus ZX3 SE (I'm a member on Focaljet.com ).

Anyway, I'm looking to find out what are the first and foremost biggest suggestions that I should do to my car (performance-wise on a budget).

I've got other hobbies, so I can't afford to put too much into my car just yet but I'm still open to try new things so I'm all ears!

Also, I checked out the PDF's on speaker-removal since I figured it was something that might've been asked alot. I got the pillars off and removed the 4 screws that hold the rear speaker but it just won't come out I don't want to FORCE it out but if that's what it takes I guess I'll have to do just that.

-Freddy
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Old 18 Aug 2010, 04:23 pm
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Here's a pic of my car, took it just before driving it back to CA from Texas.

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Old 18 Aug 2010, 11:22 pm
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Suggestions as far as upgrades go will depend on what your desires are and how deep your pockets are.

First, I'd say a better set of ignition wires and a set of NGK Iridiums, if they haven't already been done.

The step up from there is to install a boost gauge and a wideband for safety purposes, and then go ahead and purchase a Diablosport Predator. If you don't already know what that is, do a quick search and you'll turn up with a bunch of results.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 01:42 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

PT looks like it's waving

Welcome!
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 01:52 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris15 View Post
Suggestions as far as upgrades go will depend on what your desires are and how deep your pockets are.

First, I'd say a better set of ignition wires and a set of NGK Iridiums, if they haven't already been done.

The step up from there is to install a boost gauge and a wideband for safety purposes, and then go ahead and purchase a Diablosport Predator. If you don't already know what that is, do a quick search and you'll turn up with a bunch of results.
It's bone-stock, hence why I want to start having a little fun with it under the hood

In my audio forum, a buddy said "get some spark plugs, NGK 4306 coppers gapped at .32-.35"

He also told me about the Diablosport Predator so he'll be able to help me out with that once I order it.

I vaguely read something about an air-box mod?

Might take longer to respond, I'm on too many forums

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PT looks like it's waving

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Ha, thanks!

Love your rims btw.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 02:35 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Your car came stock with copper plugs already, but:

To my knowledge, the only real difference between copper and iridium plugs are simply that the iridiums are more costly, yet they last longer.

On a more technical note, the iridiums are claimed to be better at dissipating heat and and some have reported increases in fuel mileage.

It's your car, so it's your call, but the different plug types call for different gaps. In turbo applications, coppers are gapped at .040, and iridums need to be gapped between .028-.035.

And to address your air box mod and DSP topics, I suggest you head on over to PTCrew (if you haven't already) as we're the bunch that get off on tuning and fiddling with our Cruisers more so than on this forum. There's a wealth of information over there, and even contains a Mod Bible. It's worth a look.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 03:10 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Oh wow, PTCrew has that covered and then some.

Well in that case, how about the rear speaker issue? I popped off the mold, took out the 4 screws holding them in place but they seem to be 'stuck'

None of the panels have ever been popped off, even the stereo is stock (soon to be replaced) so I know that nothing's been tampered with.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 03:19 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Yep, PTC is pretty useful when it comes to modifying the PT beyond stock power levels.

The rear speaker issue you speak of appears to be simply that the speakers are a bit unwilling to come out. As long as you're positive you've removed all 4 screws from each speaker, I'd attempt to gently pry the speakers out.

I don't run any rear speakers since my fronts are amplified and my sub is in my hatch area, so I honestly wouldn't hear the speakers anyway. :P But I do remember mine being a bit hard to remove as well-- I think it's normal.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 11:05 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Since you have a 2003, you should look at getting the Stage 1 computer. S1 comes with the larger injectors that the later years came with stock. If you plan on building more power you will need them to run more boost safely. The S1 computer is calibrated for the larger injectors.
S1 is the best bang for buck

Is it a 5 spd or auto? If you have an ATX DO NOT boost in 4th. The mantra for the ATX owners is not IF your trans is going to take a dump, its WHEN your trans is going to take a dump. Start saving now. If you have an ATX S1 also recalibrates the shifting.
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Old 19 Aug 2010, 11:12 am
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Default Re: New member, need suggestions

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris15 View Post
Your car came stock with copper plugs already, but:

To my knowledge, the only real difference between copper and iridium plugs are simply that the iridiums are more costly, yet they last longer.

On a more technical note, the iridiums are claimed to be better at dissipating heat and and some have reported increases in fuel mileage.

It's your car, so it's your call, but the different plug types call for different gaps. In turbo applications, coppers are gapped at .040, and iridums need to be gapped between .028-.035.

And to address your air box mod and DSP topics, I suggest you head on over to PTCrew (if you haven't already) as we're the bunch that get off on tuning and fiddling with our Cruisers more so than on this forum. There's a wealth of information over there, and even contains a Mod Bible. It's worth a look.
Uh no. copper plugs need to be gaped about 0.32. the problem with Iridiums is its only iridium plated full iridiums would cost alot more. plus the electrodes are so small it make regapping them a pain. plus Iridiums are supose to be no gapping required but we regap them anyway.

there is nothing wrong with using copper lots of turbo guys run copper plugs, there cheap the work good. the NSRT guys did comparason between plugs and didnt make much of a difference between copper and Iridium so most of us still use copper. my wifes runs copper 4306s gaped at .32 no problems.

but for the new guy the first thing i would suggest you do, its the one thing everyone overlooks and doesnt want to do, Boost leak test. Boost leaks are the num 1 performance robber, by ignoring them they throw more and more money at the car trying to fix what they thing the problem is and getting nowhere.

what you do is go to home depo or lowes and get a 2" plumming cap (rubber end cap)

then go to autozone, Orellys, pepboys and get a valve stem and some zip ties and a boost gauge.

take the cap and put a small hole in the center and push the valve stem through it.

then install the boost gauge and "T" it into the system

to test the car you remove the factory intake pipe (and airbox if needed) attach that cap to the turbo and use an air compressor or air tank and fill the system with air, watch the guage to see how much your filling.

once you start hearing air comming out from some lines take a squirt bottle of soapy water and spary in the general area and look for bubbles and secure a zip tie on the lines and repete, once you get the gauge to sit at a consistant pressure say 15psi then you have no leaks. you'll notices a faster responce from the car.
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68 Mustang Coupe project fail!!

PT Less - ex wife took in the divorce 3/2011
05 GT Cruiser H.O. last dyno 245hp/283tq @ 15psi OCT 08
3 in intake, Stage 1 PCM, Stage 2 WGA, ported turbo@21psi, 682cc, 160 deg T-stat, Check valve, Ngk 4306 plugs, 10mm spark plug wires, 3in O2, 3in DP, 3in Y-pipe with E-cutout, 2.5 in catback exhaust, upper/lower hardpipes, HKS SSQ bov, block off plate, Energy Suspention MM inserts, NSRT hawk HPS front/rear pads, NSRT Drilled/slotted rotors, NSRT steel braded front lines, Mopar 26mm Swaybar, NSRT energy suspention swaybar bushing, NSRT energy suspention swaybar endlinks, APC Non-turbo strut bar, Black housing headlights, Tinted rear tail lights, Schroth 4 point harness, Perrin catchcan, 3 pod a-piller, boost guage 30/30, oil pressure gauge, volt gauge
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