Renovation of RQA-0381 April 1992 - August 1998

last update 28 Dec 2006 ... renamed to bookx3 to avoid other files

file placed at root level above 0381


(editorial changes
There will be more photos added to this page as time passes. Keep in touch!

Since the car is on the road now, I'll be editing this tome to move it away from the 'living document' impression where things would change during the process and finalize the description of the end product ...../rfj

A._Body aa._Body off/on ab._Body Prep ac._Paint ad._Torque Boxes
B._Frame C._Suspension Ca._Sway Bars Cb._Shocks
D._Brakes Da._Turner Disk Brakes Db._LeVesque Disk Brakes Dc._Disk Brake Stoneguards Dd._Master Cylinder
E._Engine Ea._Fuel Pump Eb._Fuel Pressure Ec._Engine Pulleys Ed._Manifold Ee._Carburator Ef._Throttle Control
F._Supercharger Fa._R-3 Airbox
G._Transmission Ga._Shifter Gb._Tranmission Mounting Gc._TV Cable Gd._Lockup-Torque Converter Ge._External Trans Filter Gf._Auxil_Cooling
H._Exhaust Ha._Heat Wrap Hb._HeatShield
Ia._Battery Ib._HEI Distributor
Ic._Wiring Id._Lights Id1._Entry Lights Id2._Lighting Control Panel Id2a._Tucker_Light
Ie._Guages If._Power Windows Ig._Alternator Ig1._Alternator Swap Ih._Wipers
Ja._Interior Ja1._Dashboard Ja2._Seats Jb._Upholstery Jc._Steering Column Jd._E-Brake
K._Heat-Air Ja. A/C Circulation

NOTE: Anyone reading and using these notes to upgrade their cars or whatever. My car is and RQA ('69-'70). The only differences between this car and an original are the engine, transmission and some emblems. RQB's should have a lot in common also. This page has taken some time to get online. I'll be adding photos to the text as I sort things out. Come on back!


Starting in September 1993, the project began, stripping of most the outer hardware and paint. One thing that stripper doesn't remove tho, is the primer. This had to be scrubbed off with steel wool and lacquer thinner. No pictures here, It was too messy....

RETURN to Index

aa._Body off/on

The car was placed diagonally inside the garage and jacked up to allow 2 stands under the front A-frames and 2 under the rear axle, raised as high as possible. Wood shims made from 2 X 12 fir planks. The planks were stacked under the end of each 'hog trough' (HT's). At this point, the body bolts, bumper to frame brackets, steering column, radiator, exhaust, speedo cable, trans shifter, gas lines and anything else connecting the body & frame were removed. The jack stands were then lowered bit by bit with the help of 2 floor jacks until the frame was completely separated from the car.

[ 1 ] ... [ 2 ] ... [ 3 ] ... [ 4 ] ... [ 5 ] ... [ 6 ]

To get more space between the frame and the body, each corner at the Hog Troughs were shimmed up an inch at a time to avoid undue body twisting and another piece of wood was slid into the stack ( 1 X 12 now). When enough room was evident, 2 timbers (6 X 6 P.T. Pine) were slid between the top of the frame and the HT's. Carpeting was added to the timbers to reduce underbody scuffing. The timbers were placed as close to the ends of the HT's as possible. Pylons made of 12 x 12 x 8 concrete blocks in sets of 3 were started at the end of each timber. The timbers were then jacked up an inch at a time at each corner and wood shims were inserted on top of the blocks until the routine allowed another layer of blocks and all the wood could be removed.

When the height was around 18 inches, the timbers were forced out toward the ends of the HT's with a 5 lb. sledge to get as much spread as possible. The carpeting allowed the bottom of the body to slide and I jacked up the end of the timber just enough to take the weight off the concrete. Then the wood was inserted again and the drill completed when there were concrete stands at each corner about three and a half feet high.

The body had to be high enough for the chassis to be rolled out from under it. Here is a Front view[1][ 2 ] where you can see the timbers under the firewall. My garage is 28 X 26 feet, so the chassis could roll out until the rear wheels were under the front wheel wells.

The engine was removed and the frame cleaned and anything that needed attention was fixed. At this height, it was enough to get the job done.

When it was time to lower the body back onto the frame, small fishing weights were hung down thru the body bolt holes and the chassis moved back and forth under the body until all the weights lined up with the holes again. The body was then lowered in reverse of the way it went up. The mounting shim packs were reset to get the body height correct again.

RETURN to Index

ab._Body Prep

After all the paint was stripped off the body. Filling was required in areas that the stripper softened up and were gouged a bit a putty knife was used to scrape off the paint and stripper. This was started when the car was first raised off the frame because of the ease of access in that position. The engine bay was stripped and cleaned. Many hours with small sureform tools, air files, sanding blocks, etc. You can't shortcut this process and have to keep at it.

RETURN to Index


After ordering all the required supplies, there were over 20 cans of different products[ 1 ] [ 2 ]

You must have a clean work area. A tent system was fashioned in the garage with poly sheets stapled to the ceiling. A dehumidifier was placed in the garage along with a ceiling fan to control and filtered the air in and out.

The primer color r was white to assure coveage. [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ 6 ]

The color coat was a '96 Lexus 'Moonstone Pearl'. The color is a pearl gunmetal grey, but it has 1500 parts of green pearl in it.
[ 7 ] [ 8 ] [ 9 ]
Eight color coats took about 2-3 hours.

[ 10 ] [ 11 ] [ 12 ] [ 13 ] Fruits of your labor.
[ 14 ] [ 15 ] [ 16 ] [ 17 ] [ 18 ]

RETURN to Index

ad._Torque Boxes

The torque boxes, commonly called hog troughs were as good as the day the car was made and easy to work on because they were up in the air. Holes were drilled into the underside of each and oil was sprayed in with a high pressure sprayer, like Ziebart uses. It was then plugged with plastic body plugs.

RETURN to Index


A good deal of time was spent with various brushes, cleaners, solvents getting all the crud off [ 1 ] the frame and bringing to light anything thast was required to get everything back in shape. The car was pretty well kept during my ownership and I've kept logs on all parts replacements and work others have done. So this endeavour did not need to be a compete renovation. Replacing most of the chassis bolts with a good grade of stainless was a bit extravagant. I made sure any 'grade 8' types were replaced with grade 8 though. The frame was gone over to make sure everything was solid and in good shape. The rear crossmember under the trunk was rusted a bit and so was cut out and a new one welded in place. The frame endcaps were sealed after pouring in a gallon or so of marine rust protection. The frame was finished off with a coat of epoxy black.

RETURN to Index


editorial changes - 29 Oct 98
The suspension is standard Avanti, with all components rebuilt. The steering bellcrank was replaced with a unit with all needle bearings and that made quite an improvement. The quick steering arms were reinstalled to resolve three converging problems.
  • (1) Clearance was needed between the tierod and the new 16X7" rims. The shorter arms moved the tierod further inside the circumference of the rim, whereas they were immediately adjacent (5/8") the tire on the original 15" setup.
  • (2) The travel of the pitman arm now interfered with the (2a) aftermarket exhaust header pipe on the right turn (don't know why) and (2b) the steering bracket contacted the crossmenber on the left turn. The crossmember problem showed up because the depth of the oil pan on the new engine required that the the steering bracket be lowered to allow freedom of movement or it would rub on the oil pan
With the quick- steer arms reinstalled, the travel of the pitman arm is now shorter, relieving me of the interference problems.
The quick steering arms were used by the Blake era to overcome a large 'lock to lock" ratio difference in a new steering box. Using them in a 1970 model will give a lock to lock ratio of 3 turns versus the original 5.5 turns. Quite a difference and it takes a bit of getting used to, but they are quickly accepted.

RETURN to Index

Ca._Sway Bars

The heavy duty Sway bar kit, measuring 1 inch at the front and 3/4 inch at the rear was ordered from Expressly Avanti. All the insulators were swapped out, including the traction bars.

RETURN to Index


Originally, the car came with Koni shocks, made in Holland, guaranteed forever, adjustable and rebuildable. Those units were set to ride so hard that they were removed and a few years later, foolishly tossed out (ouch!). Recently though, a gent emailed me that he had an NOS set for sale at a good price. Mounted them in mid October '98 and what a ride ....
Back in the mid '70s, The rear spring plates were swapped out to accept a newer different style Monroe shock with external coil springs. You can see the difference from the original. These were removed a couple rod ends were installed to accept the lower bayonet Koni threaded mount. More {1} and {2}
The Front ones are also a lot beefier and in this photo, you can see the end of the 1" sway bar and the Saturn Airdam .

The Koni shocks seen here are part numbers 8240A-1011 (front) / 8240F-1012 (rear). Absolutely the Best!

RETURN to Index


(In general) When the Avanti was born, there were a lot of great features not found on other cars. One were the disk brakes. The original Avanti front disk brake uses components that were first found on an early '50s Jaguar XK150.
To wit, the pads are the same as the inboard rear of the Jag. The rotors have to be a derivitive of those and the calipers were made by 'Bendix', under license from Dunlop. So on the caliper, you would see 'Bendix-Dunlop' cast into it. These calipers were used into the early '80s on numerous types of vehicles and I've traded the originals out for a pair used on a Toyota Crown, back in 1977. These say 'Sumitomo-Dunlop" and the cylinders are 1/8 incher larger. The parts are still available from Toyota. Even these, still use the old pucks from the Jaguar, but they work well. Check my Parts Page.

The rear drum brakes are of an older type type than on most cars. The linings don't have the floating capability that Fords or Chevys have. This is partly, I believe, to offset the requirement to install a proportioning valve like in the 'Big 3' manufacturers vehicles. They don't function the same way and will lock up if not adjusted correctly. There was a study done a while back that calculated the braking efficiency of the rear and it turned out to be only around 7% - 14% of the total requirement to stop the car. Obviously with over 60% of the weight on the front wheels, the Dunlops do all the work anyway!

RETURN to Index

Da._Turner Disk Brakes

Editorial changes Oct '98
In June,1997, I attended the AOAI/Studebaker International Meet at South Bend. Part of the techno-weenie seminar was given by Jim Turner, creator of the Turner Front Disk Brake Conversion kit for Avanti -'63 - '84. He explained in fairly good detail what was involved in manufacturing the components and to what degree he went to assure that parts would be available for some time to come. A mounting bracket for one of the calipers was passed through the room and it appeared that the engineering was well researched. There were 2 kits offered, a deluxe version which contained everything needed to complete the changeover and a partial kit omitting calipers and rotors, for those who wanted to purchase components at perhaps a better price.

I was convinced of the quality and workmanship, so I purchased a deluxe kit in September and it showed up in 2 boxes a couple weeks later. The quality is all there, along with all the parts. Not a thing to buy except new brake (silicone) fluid. The rotors even had the new bearing races installed, and the and seals still in the box. One thing that was a delight to see was the fact that the calipers are the 5.5 inch size (GM Small). They are identical to the calipers I chose for the rear of the car except that the rear has those E-brake levers. This means that I can use the same brake pads on all four wheels.

The kit wound up to be VERY easy to install, using basic skills and following the directions. The operation is described below.

A Familiar Sight. The car's up on blocks again for another modification. This is getting to be the norm. All the original Brake Components were removed. Those are the much mentioned quick steering arms at the lower right. Everything was Cleaned up . The first piece to go on was the Spindle Mount, part one of two pieces. Here's a Rear View after mounting. The next part was the Caliper Bracket. Both these pieces are coated with Lok-tite and torqued. Here's a Rear View of both parts mounted. Next, the Caliper was checked for fit. Following this was the heating and fitting of the Grease Seal Adapter. This wasn'tas hard or touchy as it seemed. The quality and precision of these parts are fantastic. This piece was heated with a Mapp gas torch till the flame turned the contact area cherry red. Not the whole thing was that hot. Gripped it with a pair of channel locks and walked ten feet to the car. It slipped right on. A small piece of pipe was handy to slide after it and assure the fit while it cooled. Nothing to it!

Next, the Rotor was placed and everything checked, so the bearings were packed and the Whole Assembly tightened down. Here's an Inside view before refitting the steering arms. Stainless steel brake lines were opted for over regular rubber shielded ones. Jim offers both with the deluxe kit and they have a banjo fitting at the caliper.

In preparation for the makeover for the car, I had planned to replace the old style Magnum 500 wheels and the revelation about the caliper interference wasn't totally unexpected. Jim Turner does include a statement about the wheel sizes on the install sheet and offered some solutions when I emailed him, so I have no complaints there. There have been statements from individuals that have installed this kit on cars with the SAME wheels and found no problems(?). This car was purchased from a dealer, so I have to assume these wheels came on the car and am completely satisfied with the Disk brake install. The original Magnum 500 wheels were discarded for a 16" alloy 5-spoke design.

RETURN to Index

Back in 1987, my brake booster failed and it was replaced with a unit from an '86 Buick "T" type. The attached master cylinder worked fine altho the lines had to be modified. When the Turner kit was installed, that Buick master cylinder had to be changed out for a more hydraulically compatible' unit. After a few experiments, in January 1999, the Master cylinder was replaced with the 85 Seville unit. Modifications had to be made, in that the original reservoir was stepped because in a Seville, the unit was mounted at an angle upward. In the Avanti, it has to be level. The reservoir was replaced with a couple plastic bottles connected to the body by a plumbing device used to mate two PVC pipes. It works fine, is light and compact and the 'right unit'. The stopping power is phenominal with 4 wheel disk brakes.

RETURN to Index

Db._LeVesque Disk Brakes

Back in 1994, the rear brake kit was purchased from Dave LeVesque of Steeltech Solutions, Marion, Illinois. He supplies the mounts and rotors, nuts, bolts, spacers to replace the backing plates with and and advise sheet that offers part numbers for calipers, brake lines, etc. The rotors are off an 80's Lincoln and are 11 inches in diameter. The mounting brackets were cut and drilled using 3/8" steel plate. '85 Cadillac Seville calipers were selected because they have an Emergency brake lever built in to the caliper. The calipers cost more than the kit if you have no core to turn in. Then you have to get all the extra e-brake parts from Cadillac including levers, brackets, springs, etc (around $100.00), then brake lines and fittings. Here is a List of the new parts.

Installing the Rear Disk Kit

The install was not hard. You remove the rear axle shafts, the backing plate, and then the Avanti e-brake cable from the brake lever and the backing plate. The hardest part is unwrapping the spring from the last foot of the cable. This is necessary to hook the cable up to the new caliper levers.

Clean up the axle housing and install the new CR13165 grease seals.
Started with the driver side axle,since you have to make your adjustments to the axle end play from the passenger side. Use RTV Sealer on both sides of the axle gaskets. Place one on the axle flange and one on the outside of the backing plate replacement spacer. Then grease the bearing and the axle gets inserted, being careful not to hit the new seal too much. Once the axle bearing is in the flange saddle, you can slip the flange bolts thru the outer bearing retainer holes, thru the axle gaskets, the spacer and the axle flange. Now fit the caliper mount onto the flange bolts. This is how it looks now. The mounts had to be ground a bit to get them to fit. When re-installing the rear axles, the endplay must be adjusted to .006 or less. This is a pretty tight measurement, but necessary to avoid having the caliper pistons pump fluid back into the lines by excess rotor slop and causing a soft pedal. The adjustment is made from the Passenger side. A screw adjuster with a lock tab is common on this side (RQA/RQB). (Again, I have to stress that my car is a '69 -'70 vintage. I've had communications with others that own '80's models that have a different setup. Use a screwdriver to rotate the endplay adjustment collar, which will force the axles together inside the 'pot'. You have to check the driver side play frequently and when you get to the point where the measurement is adequate, bend the locktab on the collar Some notes I've read say to get the measurement before you grease the bearings. I dispute this, since doing it that way, you would be grinding dry bearings together ( a no-no) and you would then have to disassemble the axle again to grease them and lose the adjustment anyway. Add to that fact that those new seals do not need a 20 Lb axle banging on them more than necessary.

Removed rear drum brake setup, repacked bearings, installed new seals (C/R 13165)
Tried out parts. Circular disc replaces backing plate
See the added section on Stone Guards below
Fitted and bolted up the mounting bracket. This needed some fine tuning to fit.
The rotors are from late 80's Lincoln Continental (11 inch). The calipers are from an 85 Cadillac Seville. the parking brake levers that must be fitted to your existing Avanti brake cable. The cable is threaded thru the 2 ears that mount the traction bar on the axle.
The Disk Brake E-levers are mounted with a large return spring, so you must remove the Avanti return spring at the end of the Avanti E-Brake cable. This is the tightly wound spring found inside the drum which locks into the large steel lever that actuates the old Drum brakes. The Cadillac E-Brake bracket bolts to the inside of the Caliper. The distance from the Caddy bracket to caliper E-brake lever is shorter (5.75") than the old distance from backing plate lock to lever (7") See here... . This makes the Avanti cable too long resulting in too much cable for the sheath shoulder to butt up against the Caddy bracket and create a tension. The bracket needs a piece added to extend the shoulder of the cable farther toward the front of the car. I used a large brass Fuel nipple. It had a 2 inch barbed neck for a 1/4 hose to go over and clamp to and the other end was like a 5/8 inch male threaded fitting. I ground the barbs off the neck until it would fit thru the caddy e-brake bracket. The neck was then rough threaded to accept a nut to hold it in place, altho the spring pressure will do this once installed.
The Avanti E brake cable was then passed thru the traction bar ears, thru the large threaded part of the brass fitting and the end of the barbed section, which NOW acted as an extended stop for the cable housing and increased the distance to the Caddy lever. The large Caddy return spring fits between the base of the caliper bracket and the of the lever forcing it rearward. The E-brake cable was then under tension when the stop was fitted into the lever. It stays in place very well.
The brake line had to be a banjo fitting type.. A unit from a Ford application with a good length of tubing to clear the leaf springs and mate with the shortened brake lines through a compression fitting.
This is the last shot before connecting the brake line. It swings around to parallel the axle and you can use the existing axle clips to hold everything in place.

This is a final shot of the left and right when complete [ 1 ] [ 2 ]

Rear Caliper Parts List

RETURN to Index

Dc._Disk Brake Stoneguards

If you look at any modern disk brake application, you cannot see the inside face of the rotor from underneath the car. They are protected by disk rotor guards, which are stamped circular sheet metal plates bolted between the spindle and the rotor. There is a definite reason for this, in that they protect the rotor from debris flying around between the wheels while you're cruising down the road. The also keep water splash from 'lubricating' the rotors when you may need them the most. The outer part of the rotor is protected by the rotating action of the rim.

In the installation of the front disk brake kit, the original stoneguards were removed and discarded. In the case of the rear, there weren't any to begin with and no provision made for adding them.

It was decided to retro-fit the stone guards in the front and fabricate new ones for the rear. On the Avanti chat group, one individual stated that you may be able to refit the front units if you reversed the sides, since the caliper on the Turner setup is aimed rearward. There is a bit more to this than just turning them around and bolting them up.

The profile of the Turner caliper was just a bit larger than the original so a small piece of the guard had to be Removed and an additional hole drilled. The guards bolted right back on in Reverse this way, BUT the new rotor is about 3 times as thick as the original and the inside area where the rotor vents start will contact and rub on the stone guard. So they required a little coaxing to get them to flare out and clear the inner rotor vent edge. I used the time tested technique called 'panel beating' ( ball peen hammer, lead dolly, patience and a light touch) to accomplish this and now they fit without any clearance problems. The result is a very professional looking install. Here's the outside passenger side Here's the inside driver side

REAR: The rear had to get the same treatment. These were much easier and were cut from 3/32" flat aluminum stock using the front guards as a pattern. The rear guard thickness also was adequate enough to replace the 'backing plate spacer' that was supplied with the rear disk kit. This only applied to one side tho because removing both would require the collar that adjusts the endplay to be screwed in too far, making the adjustment impossible. I wound up with a spacer and a stone guard on the driver side and just the stone guard on the passenger side. After some cutting and filing, the guards looked fairly decent and I have peace of mind now that all the rotors are protected.
[View 1] [View 2 ] [ View 3 ]

RETURN to Index

Dd._Master Cylinder

Back in 1987, my brake booster failed and it was replaced with a unit from an '86 Buick "T" type. The attached master cylinder worked fine altho the lines had to be modified. When the Turner kit was installed, that Buick master cylinder had to be changed out for a more 'hydraulically compatible' unit. In January 1999, the Master cylinder was replaced with the '85 Seville unit. Modifications were made to overcome the original GM reservoir design. In the Avanti, it has to be level, so the reservoir was replaced with a couple trimmed plastic bottles attached to the MC body with a plumbing connector. It works fine, is light and compact and the 'right stuff'.

RETURN to Index


Jasper was the choice. Used their Class II 350 engine, rated at 330 HP with only a 8.75:1 compression ratio. By the end of November, the new engine and trans were joined, prepped for installation and placed on the hoist. The exhaust manifolds had been derusted and sprayed them with Eastwoods SS coating. The engine looked like a piece of jewelry. The inner surfaces were deflashed of sharp metal and painted red. The crankshaft (forged steel)sat in 4 bolt main saddles, Dart heads, stainless steel valves. Quite a piece of work!
An Edelbrock aluminum manifold and aluminum water pump were used. The engine was first started on Christmas Eve, 1994 ( 1 year later)

Here is the finished product with a functioning Paxton setup.

RETURN to Index

Ea._Fuel Pump

The fuel pump used is a Holley 'Blue', variable from 4 to 9 PSI by using the accompanying fuel pressure regulator supplied with the unit. This is a different unit than the Holley 'Red', which is a lower pressure unit. The 'blue' is reported to have a high reliability factor plus the higher pressure capability was required for the Paxton. The pump was installed inside the frame to body mount right under the passengers foot.

The pump was fused and wired through an oil pressure cutoff switch, so that the unit will only operate when the oil pressure is above 5 PSI.

RETURN to Index

Eb._Fuel Pressure

[ Editorial Note 15 September 1998 ] It's been found through a few recent experiences that the fuel pressure regulator supplied with a Holley 'Blue' is not the best choice to use on a supercharger operation, or in fact, for any operation. The principle here is that the pressure is regulated with a diaphragm and spring assembly without any means of bleeding off excess pressure. There is a situation that can arise where "if the fuel pressure demand drops to zero at the carburator, and the pump stays running, then the pressure side of the pump can go as high as the stall pressure of the fuel pump." This can occur simply if you're running at highway speeds and have to come to a stop for a traffic light and what happens is your carb FLOODS and you STALL. Holley responded to my complaint stating ' this can happen if you're "dead-heading" the pressure'. This is the only way you can install this regulator and if you have to install a 'pop-off' valve in addition, then Holley has sold you only half a regulator.
Although Holley says this "is acceptable in most applications", it was a 'failure issue' as far as I was concerned. The Holley regulator was discarded because while it was not defective, the principle behind its operation IS.

What is needed is a regulator with a bypass fitting on the pressure side to vent excess fuel back to the tank or at least, to the supply(inlet) side of the fuel pump. This way, the overpressure avoids the carburator and the pump stays cooler from less strain....../rfj
The search resulted in a Mallory unit #4309 which has an inlet on the underside and 4 other ports for putting out regulated fuel on the sides. One of these ports, was for the bypass, which took about 4 feet of 3/8 aluminum tubing to fashion a return line from the outlet back to the supply side of the fuel pump.

The large opening in the Paxton volute that connects the blower outlet to the airbox has a nipple on the underside that is connected to the upper side of the original mechanical fuel pump using a 1/8" formed steel tube with rubber hose connectors. This connection is intended to send a dynamic pressure signal to the upper side of the fuel pump diaphragm.

The original engineering of this scheme explains that by increasing pressure on the upper side of the fuel pump diaphragm, the mechanical design of the fuel pump will then increase fuel pressure proportionally to prevent gasoline from being forced back through the fuel lines. This would happen if the blower pressure exceeded the fuel pressure.
A pleasant surprise is that this principle has been also been engineered into the Mallory pressure 4309 regulator. It also has a plugged accessory hole for use with a blower.
By connecting the Paxton output to this accessory inlet, you accomplish the same fuel pressure manipulation regulation as the old mechanical pump. No problems thus far, except that the initial setting of the regulator must be a bit lean (4 1/2 psi)so you don't flood the carb on startup. The unit and attachment points to the carb and Paxton can be seen here.

RETURN to Index

Ec._Engine Pulleys

The pulley setup is such:

    standard crank pulley, dual belt (6")
      ...Crank to waterpump to alternator
      ...Crank to waterpump to Sanyo A/C Compressor Power Steering (5.5") Accessory pulley (6.0 ")from early 80's Firebird, drives Paxton

    Note: A factory Paxton bracket was used to mount the blower.

The Blower idler Pulley uses the Paxton bracket, but their triple mini-belt crank & idler pulley were discarded because there was a dual belt pulley on the Blower and the crankshaft. The shoulder of the Paxton supplied idler bracket was milled down to accept (2) Toyota A/C idler pulleys, side by side. This accomodates the dual belt Paxton drive and the spacing between belts is very close all around. In order to get the accessory pulley on the crank to reach out far enough to line up with the Paxton, steel spacers (1 1/8 inch)were welded to the 3 small bolt holes and a larger on to the crank hole. When it was installed, there was a concern about wobble, but none showed up and so far, the engine has been up to 4000 RPM without a belt jumping off.

RETURN to Index


The intake manifold ordered was an Aluminum Edelbrock Performer. The concerns here were the height of the manifold. We were trying to achieve a low profile. The original GM manifold was a bit lower in overall height and had that thermostat embedded on the right side which ran the automatic choke stove. The carb had an electric choke now, so that wouldn't matter. Luckily the R-3 airbox mated with this perfectly, as did the bolt pattern for the AFB9000 carb. There still could be some height reduced by milling the flanges of the airbox and also where it mates to the manifold. You can achieve another 1/2 to 5/8 inch in reduction if you had to go this way. On the right and left sides of the lower part of the box are depressions to accomodate the travel of the carb linkage. The outside and underside of these depressions come to within 1/2 inch of the manifold, so this is where you may drop it a bit more.

RETURN to Index


While the original Avanti previously owned had a Carter AFB, and the R-3 'like' system being installed was built for one, a Carter AFB9000 (625 CFM) was purchased. The difference in the two is that this has an electric choke. The outer case of the Airbox was modified to run an insulated wire through to the choke housing. The fuel inlet in front had to be turned 90 degrees to accomodate the new Sanyo Air Conditioning compressor sitting directly in front. There is about 1.5 inches clearance here. The box also had to be modified to allow vacuum lines and fuel vent tubes in and out. This shot shows the box with the carb, the cable guide and the fabricated carb control lever.

RETURN to Index

Ef._Throttle Control

The original bellcrank gas pedal linkage was retained. A bracket was added to the rear intake manifold to hold the transmission TV cable

RETURN to Index


Model SN-60, High efficiency impeller, HD Spring pack

Paxton Installation Section...14 Apr99...

John Erb, United Engines & Transmissions, rebuilds Paxton superchargers and was consulted about applying a Paxton to this car. I was told there were no mounts made by Paxton to fit a Chevy Avanti, except for the 83 Anniversary model. In 1984, the Paxton factory was gutted by fire and many of the older castings and engineering drawings were lost. There were 2 remaining brackets, of which I purchased one. This was a design for a 305 GM engine and had to be modified a bit for the 350, by adding mounting spacers and an extra idler.

Here's a view of the modified Paxton bracket as installed, and one with everything installed & running. The air cleaner was found at a Carlisle in 1995. There is a 4 inch dual pulley on the blower and a seven inch dual pulley on the crank. One last item was to find a means of connecting the blower output volute to the R-3 Box. This creation ranged from a hacked PVC pipe, glued & taped to the current Chrysler Eagle Talon air cleaner intake flex tube. I could never find a truck radiator hose adequate enough to be modified for the job.

RETURN to Index

Fa._R-3 Airbox

John Erb also supplied the original R-3 Airbox. You could tell this piece was designed to be used on old stuff. The only means of connecting the carb to the gas pedal was a small carb control lever on the outside that connected to the throttleplate inside. The outer end of this had just a small lever bolted on with a hole in it for the gas pedal linkage. This had to be removed and a new piece fabricated with connector points for not only the gas pedal, but the TV cable to the transmission. The placement of these two mountings on this pivot are critical to the operation of the 700-R4 transmission. The part was fashioned after a Holley carb throttleplate connector, and welded to a steel washer whose center was filed to fit the control lever shaft. I have to make another for a spare.

RETURN to Index


Jasper also supplied the T700-R4 transmission.
Update on the transmission20Sep98

RETURN to Index


The transmission shift setup came out of a '92 Corvette. It had the correct quadrant for the 700R-4 trans. The interior console had to be modified to hold the shift assembly. A floor out of 3/4 plywood and screwed and glued it in from below. It was then sealed with resin and waterproofed. The existing open area where the Stude shifter went now had a floor. The assembly is bolted to the floor. The shift control cable was a correct length. A heatshield was fabricated to protect the cable from exhaust heat.

RETURN to Index

Gb._Transmission Mounting

The T700-R4 bolts right up to the 350 GM Jasper Engine, so did the FMX. Jasper's Help Desk gave me the measurements of the trans and it was pretty close in size to the FMX.
The pictures tell all. The engine and trans were hoisted up and positioned on the frame, using the engine mounts as a guide. When it was lowered into place, the transmission mount bolt holes were within 1/8 inch of the Studebaker mount. What a gift. All that had to be done was enlarge the holes in the flex mount.

RETURN to Index

Gc._TV Cable

The TV cable is a control wire extending from the carb linkage pivot down an armored sleeve into the passenger side of the transmission. It connects to a spring loaded pivot next to the valve body inside the transmission. You can see it with the pan off. The function of the cable is to dynamically adjust the pressure of the transmission fluid as its applied to the various servos while you're driving. The fixed point on the carb control lever where it attaches has to be a specific 'X-Y' measurement from the pivot axis, as does the gas pedal linkage. This arrangement gives the correct ratio to the TV cable. The other important item is the tension on the cable. I found it easier to pull off the pan and make sure the adjustment was correct by looking at where it connected to the valve. Failure to correctly adjust this cable will cause erratic shifts and can severly damage the transmission. T700-R4 Transmission here.

RETURN to Index

Gd._Lockup-Torque Converter

See the Technical Pagesfor more information on the T700R-4.

A Darry Young 4th gear lockup kit was installed. This is a peace of mind rather than a performance modification. The torque converter will only lock up in 4th gear now, and then only if I have the switch on'.

Ge._External Trans Filter

Just for backup, a Perma-Cool, external transmission oil filter with a sender for a dash mounted temperature guage was installed.
Here's a view from the other side... another


An auxilliary transmission oil cooler was placed in front of the grille. The is the 2nd cooling facility and gets its feed from the radiator cooling unit. The converter cover was ventilated and an air scoop was fashioned to force air through the bellhousing

RETURN to Index


The exhaust system is stainless steel. The routing of the pipes was expected to be a problem since the pan on the transmission is much larger than the FMX and it's also off to the drivers side a bit. The two pipes that are mainly affected are the first set after the headpipes. If you flip them end for end, it works. to the headpipe.. .[ 2 ] You have to take the pipes to a local muffler shop and get the ends enlarged. Reversing these creates a wider path around the transmission. This also requires that you enlarge the holes in the X-member that the pipes pass thru. You have to make the ovals around 4 inches wider toward the outside rails. This works perfectly and doesn't affect your muffler setup because you can use offset inlets and center outlets. The rest of the exhaust is standard, no frills. If in the future, a way is found to easily install headers, I will, to accomodate the increased flow required by the Paxton. Hugger headers are being considered.

RETURN to Index

Ha._Heat Wrap

Heat is a big problem in these cars. The fibreglass body doesn't really have any reflective characteristics to dispell heat inside the engine compartment or underneath, unless of course, you put it there. In an attempt to alleviate some of the problems, the exhaust headpipe and intermediate pipes were wrapped with a product called Thermo-Tec. This is a woven kind of fabric that looks like fibreglas sheeting, only tan in color. An optional liquid catalyzing agent is available to solidify the wrap which cures under heat. In addition to this, silver foil covered insulative sheet has been glued under the hood, inside the car on the firewall, on the floor and on the ceiling under the fibreglas headliner. It noticably quiets down the interior.

RETURN to Index


A heatshield had to be attached to the driver side exhaust pipe as it passed around the transmission pan. In this area, the new 'plastic' armored shift control cable resides. It's a short cable, but comes very close to the pipe. The pipe had already been wrapped with Thermo-Tec insulative wrap to control the cable problem and also protect the the Power Steering hoses. A 6 X 20 inch piece of stainless sheet metal was cut and holes drilled in each end to receive a muffler clamp. The clamps were placed around the pipe and the straight ends then pushed thru the holes in the sheet metal and fastened to the pipe. This is the only area that this was applied.

RETURN to Index


The battery was relocated to the trunk. A hold-down tray was fabricated of channel steel and bolted to the floor for a Marine battery box with a lid and a strap to keep it on. The electrics are thus:
    • Ford starter solenoid mounted to the rear fender curve inside the trunk right above the battery (passenger side). Grounded to Battery tray hold-down.
    • #1 guage Welder cable, copper lug from starter solenoid to starter solenoid post
    • #1 guage Welder cable, negative battery post to FRAME, hole drilled in floor next to battery box.
    • #8 guage 12v supply from (+)Ford starter solenoid to main power buss under dash.
    • #12 guage starter control wires from ignition switch to Ford solenoid. The Ford solenoid is grounded to the battery tray and it's grounded to the frame at the same point the battery is. I use webbed stainless steel for a lot of grounding. You can't have too many grounds in a glass car. All grounding points should be sanded to bare metal, connected with steel or copper lugs and sealed with silicone RTV. This solves a lot of problems.

    0381tnka.jpg Used a Marine application Battery box, wedged between 2 small angle rails bolted to floor

    0381tnkb.jpg 0381tnkd.jpg Ford type starter solenoid, bolted to rear of PS wheelwell. Red cable is to the "+" pole on the battery. The Black cable is #0000 welders cable.

    0381tnkc.jpg Both black cables are attached to the frame under the trunk. The flat black cable is a ground from the plate, on which the solenoid is mounted, on the frame.

    0381tnle.jpg The two passthroughs on the floor are electrical outlet box isolators. You can pinch the cable and hold it fast to prevent chafing. The power to the starter runs along the PS frame rail along with the fuel line.

    batckt.jpg Here is a schematic of the circuit. The cable connection at the GM starter motor solenoid lug, has a shunt wire connected to the solenoid "+" post. There is no wiring from the starter switch to the GM solenoid. When you turn the key, the Ford solenoid shoots the power through the #0000 cable to the Starter motor solenoid, the shunt then activaties the GM solenoid to push the gear into the flywheel.

    0381tnkf.jpg 0381tnkg.jpg A cargo net was installed, attached to the battery tray base and upper trunk lid hinge.

    The backup lights on the trunk lid were changed to Brake Lights for added safety and in the picture on the right, the wiring is evident.

RETURN to Index

Ib._HEI Distributor

The old Delco Point distributor was changed out for a more recent HEI type. These are pretty common and you can pick up a new unit at most any 'Carlisle' like swap meet at a fair price. The units come with two connectors right at the distributor cap, one for the +12 volt lead and the other for a tachometer pickup. These units use a straight 12 volts right direct from the battery. There are no thermistor wires to fool with and the existing (usually pink)should be removed and discarded. You cannot use Thermistor wires with HEI ignition systems.

RETURN to Index


Much of the original wiring is intact. What was removed was the voltage regulator circuit and some auxilliary stuff added over the years. Here's how it looked when it was gutted.

There was a lot of wiring added on to accomodate new A/C, different guages, the trunk mount battery, and a complete new Buss to distribute power around the car. The lights were rewired, plus guages, alternator, electric fans, ignition, fuel pump with oil pressure cutoff switch, interior lights at both sides of the footwell, a rear console light and generally all the heat, A/C and lighting controls. The new steering column ignition switch was used to incorporate a lot of relays to control power as in newer vehicles. There is also an alarm system. Even made schematics for the circuits.....

RETURN to Index


All exterior lights were rewired with new #12 guage. The connectors were upgraded using whatever I could find at Trailer supply places and at my favorite..."Carlisle". New Parking/Turn Signal light housings were installed and Lexan covers went over the headlights. The tail lights remain as original, but the backup light circuit on the trunk lid was replaced with extra Brake/Turn Signal lights and the backup lights were moved to the license plate area. The wire packs that serve the headlights and parking lights have been moved into electrical conduits under the fender.

RETURN to Index

Id1._Entry Lights

The door light switches were kept intact, but new lights were installed in the footwell and the console end plate. The two dome lights in the rear are switched at the dashboard lighting panel. There are curb lights on each door that illuminate when the door is opened and are switchable from inside the car.

RETURN to Index

Id2._Lighting Control Panel

Below the radio is the main lighting control panel. The face of the panel is brushed aluminum, following the trend set by the new wheels, the external Gas Cap and the console shifter plate. There are 5 heavy duty (read NOT CHEESY), push-pull controls for Headlights, parking lights, Instrument lights, Road beams, and an auxilliary unused. Above each switch is a Red indicator which illuminates when the associated switch is closed. Here is a partial view
Below the switches are a bank of Green lights that have different functions. A) On when the Torque Converter Lockup is applied, B) the Emergency Brake 'on' indicator, C) Transmission 'overheat light', comes on when the oil temperature exceeds 230 degrees. (If your 700R-4 exceeds 260 degrees, say good bye to it!) D) A/C Condenser fan 'on' indicator, E) is still open.


The steering bellcrank pivot assembly, mounted in the main crossmember, contains a large diameter pin which the bellcrank is mounted on and is supported by heavy needle bearings. The base of the pin has a threaded portion to adjust the endplay of the assembly. Since this pin turns in direct proportion to the steering action, it was a perfect place to mount a turning light. Here's another ...View 2. As you turn the steering wheel, the light will illuminate the area being turned toward. The only other cars to have this feature were a 30's Lincoln and the the 1948 Tucker.

RETURN to Index


The guages selected were a set from VDO called Cockpit. They are 2 1/8 inches in diameter and serve Water Temperature, Oil Pressure, Fuel Level, Voltage, Clock and Transmission Temperature. The speedometer is a cable drive to 160 mph with a resetable odometer and the tachometer is electonic and connected directly to the 'tach' connection on the HEI distributor cap. There are two guages mounted on a pod on the left windshield pillar which read Boost/Vacuum and Fuel Pressure. These monitor the Paxton operation and are made by Autometer. In the engine compartment, at the fuel pressure regulator, an Autometer Electric Fuel Pressure sender is mounted and wired to an underdash electronic module which supplies signal to the fuel pressure guage on the windshield pod. The Electric F.P. Guage is one of the newest items offered by Autometer and is far superior to the older capillary tube designs.

RETURN to Index

If._Power Windows

The only thing changed here was that the window switches were moved to the shifter console. Problem with that was the size of those wires got a bit unwieldy to work with. You can't reduce the size of the wires because the motors draw a good deal of current. In fact the current (amp) path is now probably longer. A common +12 and a common (-) was run across the dash support and was tapped into to supply red/green and yellow/green to each side.

RETURN to Index


There was a need to replace the old 40 Amp alternator with a newer higher output unit. These also have internal voltage regulators so you can trash those external regulators. Many trips to Carlisle, speaking with folks there drew these conclusions. A single wire Delco (10SI) is the easiest to install. There are a range of higher amperage units, even up to 140 Amps, but these don't really achieve that output. A few items that you should look over.....

1> if your car had a 40 amp unit, then the car wiring is limited also to 40 amps certain areas. UPGRADE your wiring on the highest drains or you can cause wires to overheat and start a fire.
2>To install a single wire Delco with an internal regulator.
*Remove it and bolt up the new one.
*Create a shunt wire to connect to terminal 2 at the rear of the alternator and the 'BAT' connector.
*Remove the Voltage regulator and unwrap the black tape from the wires, so you can follow them to wherever the go. Cut them off and reinsulate any area that may need it. These are totally useless now.
* Connect the 'BAT' connector on the alternator directly to the large supply wire that connects your battery and the main power buss under the dash. This is located over your left knee where the signal flasher sits. It's probably #10 guage (red). It's a good idea also to switch this supply thru a relay controlled by the accessory post on the ignition switch or else a lot of things could be 'hot' with the ignition off.
NOTE Any original Stude Avanti can use this same alternator. you have to fabricate a new mounting bracket, but these are available from Summit or Jegs. You leave the original Voltage Regulator in place, with wiring connected, for authenticity and at the rear of the new alternator, tape up the 'field' wire, since it's no longer needed. Connect the '+' Prestolite wire to the BAT terminal on the GM 10SI, but AGAIN, the wiring infrastructure is lighter duty on the Prestolite circuit. You should increase the gauge, from the alternator to the splice in the main harness, to at least 10 gauge.

RETURN to Index

Ig1._Alternator Swap

(early Avanti II's) In order to install a single wire alternator, the are a couple simple modifications to make. A little background first... The original RQA 40 amp alternator is a Delcotron with external regulator. The replacement is a Delco type10 SI, single wire, internal regulator. Besides the convenience of single wire, they are available in much higher amperages.

The rear housing of the original unit is notched and sits over the front part of the driver side valve cover. The single wire unit will bolt right up, but you can't get it low enough to close the hood. Here's a way.....
On this car, the alternator is mounted on the top part of a bracket that is shared with the Power Steering pump. This bracket is in 2 pieces and fastened to the front of the drivers side exhaust manifold with a large Philips screw. The top piece is just flat steel with an edge curve for strength. The curve extends the entire length of the top piece and as it overlaps the lower piece, the curve wraps over the upper area of the lower part. Removing the curve in this area is the key. It allows the bracket to move pivot radially on the large phillips screw. By removing it and grinding about and grind about an inch or so off, as shown here, you can then remount it on the lower part and swing the top of the bracket toward the fender enough for the new alternator to clear the valve cover. You will need a longer belt to make this work.

RETURN to Index....return to Alternator


The wiper pivot arms were replaced about 6 years ago and were ok. The chrome arms that the blades fit to were in need of replacment. A wiper parts vendor at Carlisle sold me a pair of mid 60's NOS Ford arms ..(2).. that had the correct dog-leg and advised that you would have to swap the part that the wiper blades hook on to. You do this by removing the rivets on the new and old units, swap the arms and replace the rivets, which he also supplied. So you wind up with a new chrome piece that attaches to the pivot arm and the long tapered piece that hides the tension spring. The parts you swap are stainless steel, so a little steel wool makes them like new also.

The original control switch failed a few years ago, so I hunted down a replacement. I found that a '70 Dodge Dart had the same switch with an added feature. If you press the knob now, it will start the windshield washer fluid pump. Got that hooked up too!

RETURN to Index


The original interior, was a Hound's Tooth pattern, in yellow and black. Here's a picture from the Premier issue of 'Collectable Automobiles' in 1984 that looked exactly like my car when new..... The exterior was 'Monterey Green Firemist', a Cadillac lacquer. There couldn't have been many produced with that scheme. It stayed like that for a while, but the car was resprayed with Martin Senour Epoxy Enamel in Metallic Silver The cloth on the seats started getting worn, so the seats were recovered in a suede texture naugehyde. It looked pretty good and the door panels were done in the same material. The Avocado dash matched the seats and contrasted with the Silver paint (brown steering column tho....). It stayed like this for many years. The paint held up rather well, until the car was stored from 1981 - 1986. It was in a warehouse in Ebensburg, PA covered with quilts and on blocks. In 1988, the paint needed to be redone and the interior was getting old.
Here's what it looks like now! and right side


[Sidetrip]... A dashboard from an '87 was installed. In the summer of 1994, a trip to the the factory in Youngstown, Ohio, was made. Luck smiled on us because Bob Luccarel had some help with him that day. I told him I was looking for a dash and this gave him some impetus to let us walk with him to the parts area. He gave a mini-tour on the way. We were treated to the 'WHACK' on the roof of a 90 - 91 model with a convenient 2 inch water pipe to show us the strength of the new bodies. The place was very eerie, kind of like being in a time machine. Everything was just stopped in different stages of production. He showed us all the cars being stored there, the prototypes, the '3-door experiments' and a lot else. He had a white convertible there 'The Last One' with a maroon roof and interior. It had only 55 miles on it. [ End Sidetrip ] I picked out a grey leather covered dash, which, luckily was just what I needed. Also purchased were A/C vent outlets and a heater control unit.

The old dash was removed and the new one fitted when the time permitted. The inlay made by overlapping layers of 1/16 inch plywood and bedding them with fibreglas resin. It was curved to fit the dash, sanded to a fine finish, drilled for the guages and then veneered with Carpathian Burled Elm. The veneer was then given 10 coats of polyurethane. Where the turn signal and hi-beam indicators went was a guess. The same with with the wiper control. The radio hole was obvious, as was a hole for a heater control panel and an ash tray. Here you can see the wiper control hole under the left upper A/C outlet on the far left, the hi-beam hole between the speedo / tachometer, the right signal indicator above the oil pressure guage hole and the left above the voltmeter hole.

An attempt to merge the heater control with the old technology resulted in too much work. The new dash was difficult to work behind and what developed was a more 'classic' heater/light control panel, much akin to an old Jag or Aston. Here's a shot of the finished design and another. The radio is a Kenwood 4000 with CD Controls. The Leather cover on the dash and the hard seat parts were all sprayed with DuPont Interior Vinyl Dye to coordinate the colors

RETURN to Index


A set of 89 Firebird GTA seats were purchased from a local shop and as part of the deal, they agreed to recover those and my rear seats. The floor had to be modified to install the tracks. These are Johnson-Hoover units, a kind of hybrid Recarro. They are not power seats in the usual sense, however there is an air pump under the drivers seat that supplies air pressure to both front seats. There are four buttons on the lower front of each seat that control air pressure for the lumbar support (up/down) and two for the side wings that squeeze you into the seat for cornering. The rest of the seat has infinite manual adjustments, fully reclining, tilt, to/fro and the center cushion section that supports the forward part of your thighs is an up/down adjustment. Quite comfortable and they look like they belong in this car
You know the story behind the original Avanti seats..It was told that Loewy was going through an Alfa-Romeo repair faciltiy somewhere, and saw these 2 seats on the floor. He looked them over and decided that the style would go great in the Avanti. In retrospect, ask any early Avanti owner and most would question that decision because "Why were they on the garage floor anyway?" After owning an original R-2 and this one with the same seat frames, I would venture to say that they weren't too comfortable in the Alfa either and they were pulled and replaced.

RETURN to Index


So my seats are kind of like hybrid Recarros, not as fancy and in cloth upholstery. They are sharp looking and functional. These and the balance of the interior is now done in varying shades of grey, going from dark at the bottom to light at the top. The carpet is a heavy rubber backed dark grey, the bottom door panels are a shade lighter, with a separator and the uppers are the same as the seat material. The door panels and rear side sections sport the original design, but in cloth upholstery. The doors have pulls from a Lincoln and curb lights. The headliner is a replica of the original only in fibreglass. The overhead switches were removed because the plastic fascade cracked and I couldn't wait around for a replacement. All the overhead functions were relocated below on a dash switch panel in brushed aluminum. The rear deck is yet a lighter shade of grey. I've installed retractable seat belts with the anchors and windup unit inside the old rear ash tray holes. they are bolted to the lower part of the roll bar. Some cutting here, but everything is covered with upholstery.
The Fresh air vents and the heater vents in the console have wooden frames around them, stained to compliment the dashboard inlay, which is Carpathian Burled Elm. The original console had to be redesigned to follow the flow of the 89 dashboard. The shifter gate is brushed aluminum.

RETURN to Index

Jc._Steering Column

The column that came with the car was standard Avanti, nothing special. After the old one was removed, one from a '69 Camaro that was the right length, had the rag-joint connector and seemed like a good choice. It had steering column locking, a tilt feature, a hazard flasher button and the capability to add almost ANY steering wheel. The underdash column mounting bracket had to be modified to accept the GM boltup. A trip to the library was required to look up the wiring schematic in Mitchells and do a cross over connection plan to accomodate the Studebaker turn signal circuit. There were also, connectors for horn, ignition buzzer, and some others you could use. The electrical connector for the starter and accessories also had to be debugged and applied to the existing Avanti electrical setup. All this may seem to be overwhelming, but a little patience goes a long way. A Momo mahogany steering wheel was used.

RETURN to Index


The underdash brake handle was removed. A floormount E_BRAKE was picked from a late 80's Ford Escort because of the mount flange and would fit close to the console. When applied, an integral light switch is wired to an indicator on the dash lighting panel

RETURN to Index


The heater is still the old system, altho the air distribution box from behind the A/C was modified and now uses air conditioner flexible duct. Where the heater plenum attached to the distributor, a domed cap was fabricated from 4" PVC pipe and in that inserted 2 2" PVC pipe outlets. The ducting attaches to the smaller outlets and can be routed more easily. Under the dash where the drivers right ankle and the passengers left ankle reside, vent grilles were placed. Here's the Drivers side The 2 " ducting fastens easily to these and they open, close and are directional. Temperature controlled air is supplied to your feet through these grilles. The temperature control for this is still cable to the climatizor valve. This valve is spliced to also moderate the water in the A/C unit circuit

The A/C is a new unit with engine coolant water valved thru it. It can be used as an auxiliary heater or mainly to defog the windshield, which is a BIG item.
The air vent grilles under the dash and the fresh air intake in the outer footwells both are framed in cedar, stained to compliment the dash inlay, which is veneered in Carpathian Burled Elm
Controls for the temperature, fresh air , top or bottom heat, etc are all lined up under the dash, on each side of the steering column, using 'choke' type control cables on custom brushed aluminum panels. They look quite tasteful. The heater fan and A/C fan and temperature controls are the three knobs on the small panel below the lighting switches.

RETURN to Index

Ka._A/C Circulation

The new A/C unit is a higher efficiency system and still uses R-12. The unit itself doesn't look much different than the old one except that it has 4 circular outlets in front and it's rated at 17,000 BTU. This is much higher that the original unit. The outlets were ducted to the four ports on the 87 dashboard.
The two center ducts are split into two more that supply the defroster vent. This allows heated conditioned air to clear the windshield. The means of switching the flow is to manually close the two center A/C vents above the radio. The condenser has 2 12" fans mounted immediately behind the grille that are activated when the compressor comes on.

RETURN to Index


An inherent problem with Avanti's , '63 - '84 is underhood cooling. Thanks to the inquisitive nature of Chris Altenburg, a fairly inexpensive retro-fit works like a charm. He found that the Airdam from a '96 Saturn , Part # 21031161, priced at $16.95 or less, can be attached to the lower radiator support on the Avanti and works wonders. Looks like it was made for the car. Here are some photos of my install. [ View 1 ] [ View 2 ] [ View 3 ] [ View 4 ]

Here are some install Directions

RETURN to Index


Go Here

RETURN to Index

These pages and programming contained therin
are © Copyright, Bob Johnstone (rfjohnstone at, 1996 - 2006, All Rights Reserved. Some technical opinions are my own from experience, other informational data is from other sources with credits when available and while care has been taken to be as accurate as possible, it is offered only as a guide and caution should be exercised in the application of it.