Ugh, the snow has come despite it being above freezing for many months past due. It usually snows around November fast and heavy. Well, due to a nasty El-Nino, (THANKS OBAMA!) which is spanish for “The Nino”, we got our first real snow at the end of December… and wouldn’tchaknow I had planned on driving the Viper to the gas station for a fill up.
Well, that got dashed pretty quick. But just to prove a point, I pulled it out into the driveway as it sits and let it snow on all the vital engine bits.
Those Forgeline wheels though… Unnffff, they look good.
The interior got some major upgrades… But why explain it when I can show you… through interpretive dance… No kidding. Just pictures.
The cage is officially gone. I realized that too much of the plastic interior pieces wouldn’t work with any amount of cage. It’s a VERY tight fit and i’ve come to learn that no amount of wishing and hoping is going to get virtually any after market seat to fit.
See these little plastic guys here? That’s suppose to connect to the EEM (Electronic Entry Module), which I have absolutely zero in stock. So I had to get one. The doors as it turns out, do not have the standard push/pull rods and/or cables that most modern doors have to open, they use electric motors AKA door poppers for the exterior and interior. Without the EEM, none of this works. Lovely. However, when it does work, it’s pretty cool I have to admit.
The next problem came in the form of the window switches. Thanks to Dodge on this one (insert eye roll) they decided to change the connector to the switches mid year and not tell anyone. I had to find a cut up wiring harness and snip off the correct connectors and splice in the wires, it was awesome, let me tell you. (more eye rolling).
I picked up an original key FOB and with the EEM installed, it was a pretty easy programming to get this to work. Since the Viper doesn’t have any exterior lock cylinders, a key fob is a must to lock the car if need be.
I found a set of original seats from Don Scharf Automotive in WI. As I already stated, aftermarket seats are hard to get to fit right as the interior is VERY tight. The emergency exist pull is right in the way of the shoulder section of most aftermarket seats so the stock seats seem like the best option. A set of 5pt harnesses were installed, which kind of was a bummer because I had to cut some of the plastics to make access holes. Oh well, safety comes first.
The exhaust note on this car was HARSH… very harsh. It was unbearable frankly. I spliced in a set of Moroso Spiral core mufflers and cranked it over. While it was still pretty loud, it cut the noise down significantly and I was pretty pleased with the sound.
It turns out that most of the Viper was built with pop-rivets… even from the factory it came this way. Again, this sucks because it makes life more challenging. No impossible, but definitely adds more work.
I got a little antsy and put on part of the gloss black stripes. The goal is to match the Forgeline wheels with Matte black centers and glossy smoke lip. I think all said and done, it will look pretty sinister. hehe.
You’re probably wondering about the photo on the opening of this article. This was sent to me by Steve Dreyer, who owns Autoform, who makes products for Vipers. He recognized the car and sent me this picture. After speaking with him via the Facespacebookgram, he got me in touch with one of the original owners.
After speaking with the old owner named Ron, he informed me that Steve worked on it quite a bit, then it was turned over to Archer Racing of Duluth. If you’ve been a racing fan or Viper fan in the past 15 years, this name should ring a bell. They are pretty well known for being some serious racing. As it also turns out, the motor that is in the Viper “War Venom” now has less than 600 miles on it as the original was blown up. My outlook on the car has been improved knowing that the running gear is pretty solid.
That’s all for now. Thanks for checking in! 🙂