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Brad Hogg's 1983 New Yorker Fifth Avenue

This is my 1983 New Yorker Fifth Avenue. The car isn't much to look at but the whole idea of the car is to give me something I can drive in the winter so I can save my nicer cars for summer.

According to CarFax, the VIN translates to...
VIN: 2C3BF66P3DR216228
Body Style: SEDAN 4 DR
Engine Type: 5.2L V8 2 BBL SD OHV
Manufactured In: CANADA

You may be asking yourself, "Hey! Why does a 1983 Chrysler have a RV-2 AC compressor?" You would be correct in questioning this. The engine in this car was transplanted from a 1977 Chrysler LeBaron. The original 318 had been dismantled in place by someone and then left out in the elements. The guy who I bought the car from had put the 1977 engine in the car and then drove the car for a couple of years. When I got the car I noticed the RV-2 compressor and questioned him on it and he told me the story of the engine swap. This is not a bad thing because having a numbers matching 1983 New Yorker Fifth Avenue is not something to brag about and the 1977 318 was listed as having 145 hp...up five from the 1983 318's 140 hp.

I had the car towed home so it was only then that I notice that the right rear wheel was locked. Going by the two gas receipts in the glove box, the car had been sitting for about 14 months prior to me buying it. It turned out that the right brake drum was rust-welded to the backing plate. I had to break the drum to remove it. I then got a replacement from the salvage yard and put it all back together. The car then would roll and move around under its own power.

It took lots of cranking and priming the carb to get the 318 running. The V8 fired up though and ran reasonably well. The next thing I noticed was the loud exhaust. It turned out that the exhaust system overall is in very nice condition and looks fairly new but the inlet on the muffler had busted off. I had a used replacement muffler on the shelf so I installed that. The exhaust is now very quiet, as it should be.

Next I turned my attention to the engine. The 318 still needed a little prime to start and would not idle when cold. Once it warmed up, it ran as smoothly as a 318 should. I removed the plugs and blasted them clean with my little spark plug sand blaster, gapped them and reinstalled them. When I removed one of the wires, the electrode came off and ramained on the plug. I replaced that wire with one I had on the shelf. With the plugs as good as new, the engine would start great! The thing still would not idle cold. Warm, it was a thing of beauty but it wasn't going to have anything to do with idling cold.

While I was cleaning up the plugs, I noticed that there was no electronic ignition control module on the firewall. I'd only assumed that the engine had been converted from lean burn to electronic ignition...I was wrong in that assumption. What I also noticed then was that the vacuum line that should be on the vacuum pot on the engine computer was not connected. I grabbed some line from the shelf and connected up this pot to PORTED vacuum, off the base of the carb. VOILA! The car starts great and idles GREAT!

The vacuum pot on the engine computer is vital! This pot serves the same purpose as the one found on the distributor on a non-lean burn engine. The pot provides vacuum advance to the engine when needed. When the car was on fast idle (choke on) the engine needed some spark advance that it was not getting so it would not idle. Now it is getting that required spark advance and the 318 runs as nicely as I knew a 318 should.