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1982 Chrysler Imperial Frank Sinatra Score!


MarkV
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Hello everyone! Well I just picked up a free, yes free 1982 Chrysler Imperial Sinatra! It hasn’t been on the road since 1997 due to issues with the original fuel injection still in the car. I have been working on cleaning it and mainly obviously the paint is baked but very little rust seat bottoms need to be reupholstered. The car is complete and the wiring in great shape. It’s like it was parked and left. I spoke to both of the previous owners and found out the history going back to 1988. 

 

It came with with a number of free spare parts as well! 

 

1. Should I keep the original FI? (Yes I have read the issues and know about the Imperial site). I have the opportunity to get every efi part for free and al in good working order.

 

2. If I convert it to carb what is a setup for the 318 that is CARB compliant for California? 

 

3. Other suggestions to get this thing rolling? 

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The original EFI was a good system but unlike other EFI of the time. Dealers needed special diagnostic equipment and mechanics needed  special knowledge to work on it, which few had. The fact that it was only used on Imperials didn't help.

I would keep the original system if possible. They can be changed to a conventional carburetor and electronic ignition in fact, most of them have.

Does the Imperial club have any info on diagnosing and repairing the system?

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Congrats on the car.

That is some serious shag carpet going on there.

 

Knowing Calif, I seriously doubt there are any CARB compliant options that use a carburetor.

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They only made a couple hundred of them. I found some prelim info my 1981 is non injected and was converted to a carb by Chrysler during the tsb I do have a plug on a good efi system that I’m being given in trade for a imperial radio that I don’t need.

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I really like these. The FS special is going to be a 80's collectible. I still remember the ad's with Lee Iacocca and 'ole Blue Eyes himself extolling the virtues of these. Built by one of the most seasoned teams in Detroit, special paint and trim. Cassettes of Frank's favorites.

Remove the EFI and go with a modern carb and ignition. Keep the old stuff, but get it drivable, and drive it!

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I agree with zepher on this.

Changing over to a carb will almost certainly never get a CA smog cert again. You know how tough CA is on smog, especially for cars from this era. Any change from original and you're going to have to take it to a referee, and they're pretty stringent. 

If your heart is really set on bringing this one back to life, make it as easy on yourself and your pocketbook as possible. Stay with the EFI.

Greg

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Doesn't California have a 25-year rolling exemption on smog tests?

 

I would also imagine that if you did it using the factory conversion kit, they would have to accept it.

 

My final thought is that you part that thing out and buy a better one if you really like the design. I sold a really nice, low-mileage (~25,000), one-owner example for like $7000 bucks a few months ago.

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1 hour ago, Matt Harwood said:

Doesn't California have a 25-year rolling exemption on smog tests?

 

I would also imagine that if you did it using the factory conversion kit, they would have to accept it.

 

My final thought is that you part that thing out and buy a better one if you really like the design. I sold a really nice, low-mileage (~25,000), one-owner example for like $7000 bucks a few months ago.

 

Im not parting it out  it’s still in restorable complete condition. Was your nice one owner one a Sinatra? I have not seen one near that price for about 5 years most nice ones are now in the 10 to 15k range. Plain Jane imperials are easy to come by for cheap like my 81 was. 

 

I didn’t get this one it to resell it. I wanted one for ten years never found an FS anywhere near locallyBringing them back is all the fun. I have an 81 as well as this 82. My 81 though is not an FS and it is fairly plain with a cloth interior. 

 

As as far as the asterisk yes that was on carbed ones like my 81 this 82 has the asterisk but the previous owner swapped it out. Thankfully I have an efi cluster which I will install. 

 

I have ave a whole complete original working imperial fi system coming in the mail in addition to the throttle body hydraulic unit (still new in the box) 

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7 hours ago, MarkV said:

Hello everyone! Well I just picked up a free, yes free 1982 Chrysler Imperial Sinatra! It hasn’t been on the road since 1997 due to issues with the original fuel injection still in the car. I have been working on cleaning it and mainly obviously the paint is baked but very little rust seat bottoms need to be reupholstered. The car is complete and the wiring in great shape. It’s like it was parked and left. I spoke to both of the previous owners and found out the history going back to 1988. 

 

It came with with a number of free spare parts as well! 

 

1. Should I keep the original FI? (Yes I have read the issues and know about the Imperial site). I have the opportunity to get every efi part for free and al in good working order.

 

2. If I convert it to carb what is a setup for the 318 that is CARB compliant for California? 

 

3. Other suggestions to get this thing rolling? 

 

 

 

I am far from a Mopar guy, but I think that the car is pretty cool. If you can get the EFI parts for free I would not hesitate and get them. Try to get it running with the EFI

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2 hours ago, MarkV said:

...most nice ones are now in the 10 to 15k range. 

 

Wes, you might be seeing ASKING prices, which are

often far apart from selling prices.  A year or so ago,

there was one that was said to be beautiful, and entirely

working (and I think an AACA winner) for sale for $6000

on the website of the online Imperial club.

 

However, you can't beat your price of zero!  Congratulations

on obtaining a scarce car, and on your desire to bring it back

to its glory.  Since you already have a 1981 also, you know

more than most of us about these cars.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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19 minutes ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

 

Wes, you might be seeing ASKING prices, which are

often far apart from selling prices.  A year or so ago,

there was one that was said to be beautiful, and entirely

working (and I think an AACA winner) for sale for $6000

on the website of the online Imperial club.

 

However, you can't beat your price of zero!  Congratulations

on obtaining a scarce car, and on your desire to bring it back

to its glory.  Since you already have a 1981 also, you know

more than most of us about these cars.

 

Was it specifically a Sinatra edition? There were about 200 made. They are rare and far between.

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I had a nice Mopar someone gave me for free in 1988.  It was a nice 1973 Dodge Dart 4 door sedan in Smurf blue with a slant six.  I loved that car because of the comfort, and it was easy to work on.  I remember working on a friend's Mercury Cougar once and noticed how much better designed, and easier to work on was a Dodge compared to the Mercury!  It was the first year of Chrysler's new electronic ignition and it had front wheel disc brakes, which were by far the best, easiest brakes I'd ever had.  I also loved those cool front fender mounted turn signal indicators.  Apparently, crooks who are fond of five finger discounts also thought they were cool.  One morning I went out to my car to find the battery lying on the side of the driveway, and the entire engine wiring harness including those indicator lights gone!  So I had someone drive me to the junkyard and found a Plymouth Valiant six and unplugged the wiring harness from the cowl.  Cost me about $6.  But all of those cool turn signal indicators were already gone from those junk Dodge and Plymouth cars.  It took me about five minutes to rewire the engine harness when I got home.  yes, those old Dodges were easy to work on!  

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4 hours ago, marcapra said:

I had a nice Mopar someone gave me for free in 1988.  It was a nice 1973 Dodge Dart 4 door sedan in Smurf blue with a slant six.  I loved that car because of the comfort, and it was easy to work on.  But all of those cool turn signal indicators were already gone from those junk Dodge and Plymouth cars.  It took me about five minutes to rewire the engine harness when I got home.  yes, those old Dodges were easy to work on!  

I had a 1974 Dodge Dart with a slant six from 1986 - 1988 as my winter beater.  It was a putty color base level model with all of three options, Torquflite automatic, AM radio, and the "light package" which included those fender-top turnsignal indicators.  I agree, it was very easy to work on.  I paid $300 for it, when I first got it, and sold it for $250 two years later. 

 

Craig 

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