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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Greetings, trying to keep the forums alive. Seems like everyone is migrating over to FB Groups.

(for those who are interested, here is my youtube channel. I try to document everything done to this car) -

I recently sold my dream Saab - The Viggen due to moving out of state and couldn't justify taking it with me (long story). The Viggen was my 4th and favorite Saab and I was sad to see it go.

So when I moved, I was on the search for another. I posted on the local Saab FB group with 2 conditions - It had to be manual and under $1,500. I got a few responses. One of them caught my eyes (mainly because it was $850 :LOL:). The owner worked with me down to $700 and it was a deal!

This is my 2004 9-5 Arc. It was sitting for a bit because the previous owner bought a new car and has not been used. It runs and drives remarkably well. Still a mystery to me why the owner let it go for so cheap. Maybe one day I will find out (hopefully I don't haha). It has zero rust, not even a speck! This is new to me because I am from the rust belt. It was weird to see an old car without rust!
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Has 165k miles on the clock
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It is indeed a manual :p
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The first thing to do was to give it a good exterior wash. Body panels are in excellent shape, I could see no dings or dents, just a few scratches in the common places.
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Next on the list is a good interior detail. It needs it badly haha.

I am also documenting the progress on my YT channel.

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
handbrake needs looking at ASAP..
haha! for sure it does, but honestly, it's a cosmetic issue so I'm not too worried about it just yet. I need to first clean the interior. The thing is pretty filty with old crusty foods and dog hair! Who knows what else I will find when I remove the seats? :p

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Did some introductory cleaning.

There were a lot of leaves and dirt everywhere.
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Wood Arthropod Building Insect Cuisine

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And after a lot of elbow grease and an entire roll of cleaning wipes...
Grey Ingredient Wood Petal Cuisine

Much better!
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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Then I moved onto the interior. It was also dirty:
Road surface Asphalt Floor Gas Electrical wiring

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and removed a bunch of trash:
Baby Products Auto part Plastic Baby carriage Asphalt

It's amazing what a quick and simple vaccum can do...The mats have quite a bit of staining, so I will be removing those soon.
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Shoe Sleeve Wood Grey Denim

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The roof mounted antenna was an eyesore. The southern sun was not kind to it.
Water Liquid Hood Fluid Gas

so I removed the old bits:
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and lucky for me, the car came with a new dummy cover. Much better!
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The side mouldings weren't in good shape either:
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I had mcguire's back to black laying around so I did two passes with it:
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Then I removed all the previous owner's touches, like this front plate (I think it is Startrek?)
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and removed the "I aim to misbehave" quote. Anyone know where that's from?
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And this weird thing haha
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But I did put this SCNA sticker. Must support the club!
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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Next up was replacing this old shift knob. It was coming off onto my hands every time I shift, and I got really sick of it. I probably will get sick because of it if I don't replace it soon.

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An original knob is $138.00 on Esaabparts. And while I'm sure the quality is good, I wasn't ready to spend that much yet on a shift knob. So I got a replica one for $22.00. Surprisingly it felt good. I was expecting total crap but it was a pleasant surprise.
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Looking much better!
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Video summary:

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Did the bypass valve hose mod the other day. It was fun learning how the system worked. To me, I didn't feel much difference in sound. Slightly better throttle response though. Might be because I have a stock tune. One more reason to go stage 1!

And because it made no sound difference, I went ahead and got a cone filter from AEM. Very common mod, and a must have for any turbo car :)

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Finally replaced my cup holder today. I never use it but it always bothered that it was broken!
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I didn't know you had to open up the entire dash panel. It was fun but tedious. Broke tabs and cracked the dash a little. oops :)
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I found the culprit! 1 ball was broken. I guess this is why most cup holders fail.
Hand Finger Thumb Nail Tool

The other culprit. This gear was too free and it was causing the cup holder to come out too fast.
Hand Finger Thumb Nail Wrist

New one is in! :)
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It's a very small thing but I feel good knowing that onemore thing is restored to its former glory. AND I got to learn how it all works inside. I had a very good time with this one. Video link below!

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #27 ·
I just really really wish they had steel components and steel ball joints etc. Could be an amazing design but it's just too flimsy!
I have a 3d printer and I was thinking of replicating that ball part but it would probably break again. I was thinking the same thing! I wish someone made steel versions!

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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #30 ·
I acquired some goodies. Sharktooth front bumper and projector headlights. The bumper is in pretty rough shape. I am not worried about the paint chips and scratches because those are easy to fix, but I am scratching my head over the upper grill portion where it is completely detached. Any advice, previous experience, horror stories would be greatly appreciated!

I can think of a few options:
1. Use heat to mould it as best as I can and use strong epoxy, metal mesh back to bond it back.
2. Cut up my base bumper's upper part and merge it with the sharktooth bottom. Cut would be at the black plastic trim line for the best possible match.
3. Just color match it and put the sucker on, YOLO.

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As for the projectors, I saw conflicting opinions online whether they would work on a base model. Some said they are plug and play (I doubt it), some say it will work but with errors on the SID, some say it is impossible and you need level sensors and wiring. Instead of reading about it and giving up, I decided to actually try it for myself. My ideal situation would be to just remove the xenons alltogether and put high quality LED bulbs in as a replacement. We shall see...!
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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Today, I installed the xenons. mostly plug and play as you guys have said :)

Look at the difference!
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Cutoff line comparison
Wood Bird Floor Gas Flooring

Did a quick polish before leveling them.
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My best friend WIS
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leveled according to WIS.
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on the road comparison
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Video summary:

overall, 1000% happy with the conversion!!!

next up is restoring this rough looking sharktooth bumper. Stay tuned!
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