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crankwalk
crankwalk SuperDork
3/2/18 8:37 p.m.
BTD said:

Those rolled dual walled tips look like the HKS turbo exhaust from the early 90's before they were doing their Hi-power and Dragger stuff.

 

@crankwalk ^ That looks like it! Now to sleuth down the actual model name that HKS used...

 

 

I think it's literally called the HKS Sport Exhaust for a 91+ turbo MR2. Maybe an old HKS catalog somewhere has more info?

 

 

It was their mildest street exhaust without being too loud. 

BTD
BTD Reader
3/5/18 2:22 p.m.

SHE LIVES!

 

Pardon the high idle, it's currently freezing here in Colorado and this was the car's first start in a few years. But she's alive, running, and nearly finished. Feels good to see the progress being made.

Robbie
Robbie PowerDork
3/5/18 2:26 p.m.

Awesome!

BTD
BTD Reader
3/6/18 9:57 p.m.

All done! 

Super, super impressed with how OEM it looks. To the average person, I doubt they'd be able to tell it wasn't factory. 


Chasing down one last issue with the clutch not fully disengaging, but I'm hopeful its nothing major and just needs some break-in. I guess it's never really done, but at least its a running and driving project rather than a stationary one!

revhard
revhard Reader
3/7/18 2:05 p.m.

how long did it take the shop to do all the work?

BTD
BTD Reader
3/8/18 10:23 p.m.
revhard said:

how long did it take the shop to do all the work?

About a month and a half from drop off to today. There were a few delays due to waiting on parts and such. I suspect it would have been done in a month if I had every single thing with the car when it was first taken there. 

 

I picked up the car today - it's very quick and very fun to drive. The clutch engagement is very, very low so I'm still figureing that out, and my speedometer is currently reading fast, which is a bummer as I may have to swap the internal diff odometer gear. 

First step was an alignment: 

 

I crawled under the car while the techs were working on it, since I had heard some clunking from the suspension. All four struts are completely shot, which is to be expected from a car that was used as a racecar and then parked multiple years ago. The strut mounts are also bad, so I'll need to replace those. 
 

Finish one thing, then on to fix the next. Ah, the joys of having a project car.

revhard
revhard Reader
3/9/18 12:31 p.m.

what were some of the things you were missing?

Im in the process of prepping my motor and trans mission to be ready for the swap. doing wiring on the engine before i swap it in. Just wondering if you had any advice for things forgotten or stuff the shop had trouble with.

BTD
BTD Reader
3/9/18 2:18 p.m.

I added quite a few things along they way, which necessitated picking up some additional parts. For example, I decided halfway through that I was going to use the S51 gearset instead of the S54, so I had to source the S51 transmission partway through. I also decided to add the TRD LSD about two weeks into the swap, which took some time. 

 

My reccomendation would be to use a donor car. Buying a '98 Camry allowed me to pull the V6, emissions equipment, exhaust, etc all in one day. The '98 Camry with a manual is the best donor becuase: 

1) All the emissions stuff is in the engine bay rather than on the tank

2) It already has a M/T ECU

3) The exhaust manifolds fit

I also recommend using an early (~'96) 1MZ fuel rail, as it has the return setup already built in. Do NOT use a 3MZ fuel rail, it doesn't fit.

 

Figuring out the little details like coolant hoses and where to mount things will take a while. All in all, it's about as straightforward of a swap as you'll find.

 

The good news, is that my car passed emissions today!

Vigo
Vigo UltimaDork
3/9/18 10:36 p.m.

This is awesome. Can't wait to hear/see more of it actually being used.

BTD
BTD Reader
3/10/18 10:44 p.m.

Suspension problems...

We couldn't get the car aligned properly a few days ago. It's currently showing -2.2* camber on the driver's front and -3.2* (!) on the passenger front. Shop claims there's not more adjustability - bullE36 M3. No way a factory setup gets to those numbers. 

 

I tracked down one of the previous owners and talked to them. Apparently some Toyota camber bolts were included when he sold the car to the last owner. I suspect the last owner put those bolts in (possibly incorrectly) and that's why I'm seeing such huge camber numbers. SO...back to the shop. 

Twenty minutes of wailing on the lower strut bolts with an impact gun later...no dice. The bolts are rusted solid. This complicates things as A) I can't get the car aligned, and B) I need to get them off to swap out the struts/suspension anyway. 

 

These stupid bolts are the only rusty thing on the whole car, it makes no sense. Oh well...I know what I get to do tomorrow.

revhard
revhard Reader
3/11/18 9:10 p.m.

I want to do the s51 fifth gear but I'm feeling kinda lazy. It's probably best to do it while the trans is out tho. Where do you get the last from and what pushed you to get it?

BTD
BTD Reader
3/13/18 1:16 a.m.
revhard said:

I want to do the s51 fifth gear but I'm feeling kinda lazy. It's probably best to do it while the trans is out tho. Where do you get the last from and what pushed you to get it?

IMO, swapping the whole S51 gearset is the way to go. I picked up a used S51 transmission for $250. Just buying the 5th gear new from Toyota would have cost more. The S51 gearing is similar to the E153 and is IMO better suited to the engine. 

revhard
revhard Reader
3/13/18 5:21 a.m.

Man, you're giving me bad ideas.

Do you have to crack open both transmissions and swap the gear sets? is there anyway to just swap casings?

Maybe ill do it down the road. I have 2 s54 transmissions right now so ill get the car swapped and then maybe plan to do the s51 down the road. Im too afraid of project creep and just want a work in progress like you instead of project that never got off the ground.

Your build thread has helped push me to keep moving forward.

krautastic
krautastic
3/13/18 9:06 p.m.
revhard said:

Man, you're giving me bad ideas.

Do you have to crack open both transmissions and swap the gear sets? is there anyway to just swap casings?

Maybe ill do it down the road. I have 2 s54 transmissions right now so ill get the car swapped and then maybe plan to do the s51 down the road. Im too afraid of project creep and just want a work in progress like you instead of project that never got off the ground.

Your build thread has helped push me to keep moving forward.

I believe you can use the S51, swap the bellhousing and then drill the shift assembly to flip the selector. Your speedometer will be off though because the camry speedo gear is different from the S54. Swapping the gears is really the right way to do it, the easy button has its drawbacks.

BTD
BTD Reader
3/14/18 2:01 p.m.
krautastic said:
revhard said:

Man, you're giving me bad ideas.

Do you have to crack open both transmissions and swap the gear sets? is there anyway to just swap casings?

Maybe ill do it down the road. I have 2 s54 transmissions right now so ill get the car swapped and then maybe plan to do the s51 down the road. Im too afraid of project creep and just want a work in progress like you instead of project that never got off the ground.

Your build thread has helped push me to keep moving forward.

I believe you can use the S51, swap the bellhousing and then drill the shift assembly to flip the selector. Your speedometer will be off though because the camry speedo gear is different from the S54. Swapping the gears is really the right way to do it, the easy button has its drawbacks.

Kraut is right, you can use the S51 and drill the case, but your car will be setup for the S54 speedo gear (assuming it's a naturally aspirated shell) so the speedo will be off. Correct way would be to swap the case and use the S51 gears in the S54 case, swapping the S54 speedo gear along the way.

 

The speedo in my car is off because the shop I'm working with forgot to swap the speedo gear off of my UK TRD LSD, so my speedo currently reads in KM/H. Working with them on getting it fixed.

revhard
revhard Reader
3/15/18 8:44 a.m.

I just thought of something ill need to encounter soon.

How did your shop get rid of the power steering pump? We dont need it on the 1mz so i guess theres no point leaving it there. Did you keep A/C?

krautastic
krautastic New Reader
3/15/18 10:32 a.m.

Just rip it off. It's a separate belt. You can keep AC. From a donor camry cut the AC lines as far back to the firewall as possible. The main thing you want are the junctions to the AC compressor. Then you take it to an AC repair shop and have them weld the lines to the lines in the MR2. Unless you're really daring and can do it yourself. There's more steps if your car came with the old R12 gas (can't remember when they switched). Anyway, here's some links, not sure if they answer everything as I'm not at that stage in my car:

 

https://midshiprunabout.org/mk1/ac-conversion/

http://www.mr2oc.com/188-v6-mr2-forum/601201-ac-wiring-question.html

 

Bonus: the AC compressor for a camry is designed to cool a 4 door sedan. Your 2 door sports coupe will be an ice box inside.

granolavsraisins
granolavsraisins
3/15/18 1:56 p.m.

Regarding the camber, I'm sure it's the bolts themselves since that was the same problem with my mr2.

What emissions parts locations are specifically unique to the 1998 Camry? It seems like the 2000 Camry/Solara m/t have the same locations for emissions controls in the engine bay.  Evap is right next to the gas tank according to parts diagrams for the 1998-2000. 

BTD
BTD Reader
3/15/18 7:10 p.m.
revhard said:

I just thought of something ill need to encounter soon.

How did your shop get rid of the power steering pump? We dont need it on the 1mz so i guess theres no point leaving it there. Did you keep A/C?

My car is a manual steering car, so I just didn't use the 1MZ power steering pump. As mentioned, it's a separate belt and can just be removed.

 

Regarding the camber, I'm sure it's the bolts themselves since that was the same problem with my mr2.

What emissions parts locations are specifically unique to the 1998 Camry? It seems like the 2000 Camry/Solara m/t have the same locations for emissions controls in the engine bay.  Evap is right next to the gas tank according to parts diagrams for the 1998-2000. 

Looking underneath, some of my bolts have three dots, some have two dots, and some have no dots. From my research, these are different sizes of camber bolts from Toyota, correct?

 

The big thing is the evap canister - on my 1998 Camry, it was in the engine bay, not next to the gas tank. For the MR2, this simplifies things immensely. 

granolavsraisins
granolavsraisins New Reader
3/16/18 5:31 p.m.

Oh perfect, I think the 2000 models are going to work. You have the aftermarket bolts from two's r us. If they are lobed then it's obx. 

You have to set all the way in on the top and make sure the bolt sits flush against the spindle. The bottom will need to be secured towards you. That way wheels sit like this "/   \". The factory bolts provide 2 degrees neg camber and torqued to 151 ft lbs. If your wheel wiggles at all; it wasn't set correctly. 

 

BTD
BTD Reader
3/18/18 5:25 p.m.
granolavsraisins said:

You have the aftermarket bolts from two's r us. If they are lobed then it's obx. 

You have to set all the way in on the top and make sure the bolt sits flush against the spindle. The bottom will need to be secured towards you. That way wheels sit like this "/   \". The factory bolts provide 2 degrees neg camber and torqued to 151 ft lbs. If your wheel wiggles at all; it wasn't set correctly. 

I know how the negative camber system works, I'm just looking to identify what bolts I actually have since they appear to all be different sizes. 

 

More updates:

First, some exterior photos since I haven't really posted any!

 

She needs a detail very, very badly, but will clean up nicely I think. Wheels (since I'm sure someone will ask) are BBS's from an FC RX-7 convertible. I had the center bore milled out an additional ~1mm so that they would clear the MR2 hubs. 15x6.5 +40, I'm running staggered 195/205 tires.

 

Then I did some more investigation work into my suspension. Specifically, it had a very loud clunk/squeaking that I wanted to track down. My past experience with aftermarket swaybars has not been positive, so that was my first suspicion. This car has a custom swaybar that was made by one of the previous owners. It has thicker ends that are welded to a narrower center bar, as he wanted to tune a specific spring rate for the bar. I crawled underneath...and the bar hadn't held up well over the years: 

 

More alarming when I went underneath was the corrosion I was seeing around the driver-side swaybar mount. So, off the swaybar came. 

 

The good news? No more clunk.

The bad news? Well...none really. The driver's mount is a little corroded but I think spraying it down with some rust converter will do the job nicely. I might order the swaybar reinforcement plates from TwosRUs, we will see...

 

Ordering suspension this week. I have a set of H&R Sport springs, which are a bit lower than where I'd like to be, but they were cheap (sub-$100) so I'm tempted to use them. Probably going to pair them with Konis and go from there. Decisions decisions...

Nitroracer
Nitroracer UltraDork
3/18/18 7:27 p.m.

The black and gold color combination is a good look for the car.  V6 MR2s seems to be all the rage lately!

BTD
BTD Reader
3/29/18 6:58 p.m.

A big box of fun showed up today: 

 

Suspension is getting a total overhaul this weekend. New ball joints, tie rods (inner and outer), endlinks, etc. I'm also picking up a lightly used suspension setup of Konis + Eibach Pro Kit springs that will go on at the same time. Should completely transform the car. 

 

Doubly so when I forget to mention that one of my rear toe links was completely loose, which allowed for over 1/2" of toe change on the rear wheels. Both sides were loose. Terrifying, and it explains why the car wandered so much on the highway. This suspension update was long overdue....advice to everyone: ALWAYS check the suspension bolts on any project car you pick up. You never know what the P.O. did.

stylngle2003
stylngle2003 New Reader
4/3/18 8:29 a.m.

hey BTD, any status updates on the Canton oil pan?  loving the build progress!

BTD
BTD Reader
4/5/18 4:42 p.m.
stylngle2003 said:

hey BTD, any status updates on the Canton oil pan?  loving the build progress!

The oil pan has gone on the back burner for now, I'm in the process of moving and haven't had much in the way of free time to explore something like that. Might pick it up after everything is settled in. Canton was receptive, and based on my initial posts to gauge interest there's probably 15-20 interested parties for a group buy. 

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