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akylekoz
akylekoz Dork
2/6/19 9:26 a.m.

https://www.deadclutch.com/2017/12/18/1990-suzuki-alto-works-rsr/

I'm in the process of prying this from the clutches of Cooter.  Any help in parts sourcing would be appreciated.   Sounds like I'll need bottom end parts for sure. 

The F6A motor was used on a lot of different stuff, Suzukis, Mazdas, Arctic Cats, what else?

Randman2011, I sent you a PM.

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE Reader
2/6/19 10:34 a.m.

Oh, this is shaping up to be awesome.

As for engine swaps- Tom's Turbo Garage so far has reported that he has NO idea what engine you could put into the car because of the lack of space, outside of motorcycle engines (which aren't his specialty) and the only other 3-cylinder engine I can think of is the turbocharged Ford Fox-series and the old Geo engines. Obviously, it must be powered by electricity instead.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
2/6/19 1:58 p.m.
akylekoz said:

https://www.deadclutch.com/2017/12/18/1990-suzuki-alto-works-rsr/

I'm in the process of prying this from the clutches of Cooter.  Any help in parts sourcing would be appreciated.   Sounds like I'll need bottom end parts for sure. 

The F6A motor was used on a lot of different stuff, Suzukis, Mazdas, Arctic Cats, what else?

Randman2011, I sent you a PM.

The Arctic Cat T660 has always used the K6A. The F6A is quite a bit older, but was found in seemingly most kei vehicles from 1990 until they started getting phased out for the early K6As in 1995 and were completely gone by 2001. Alto, AZ-1, Cara, Cervo Mode, Cappuccino, Every, Carry, and Jimny all had an F6A of come kind, but beware of the longitudinal installations in the Jimny and Cappuccino because they used completely different engine mounts, clutch components, and engine accessories, among other small things.

The F6A was never sold in the US in any form, but the minitruck guys have put together a pretty decent supply chain to support the Carry here. I haven't checked that market out too much because I didn't join their ranks until this past weekend, but I know that Yokohama is a popular Japanese retailer for things like rebuild kits. I get all of my OEM parts from Megazip or Amayama and my experience has been good with both so far. I tried Amazon.jp for a few parts but many suppliers on there refuse to ship out of the country. For things like that I have used an in-country exporter like Dan Moldrich at Rupewrecht to buy them for me and ship them across the pond. In fact, that's who is handling the HT07 that I just purchased last week. Other than exporters like Dan, I have had no luck with aftermarket parts with the Autozam. The Alto might be a little easier since it is much more common.

I'm a bit jealous. I have wanted an Alto Works ever since my Autozam arrived, but I think I might end up with a turbo Every if I do get another passenger vehicle. I'm incredibly impressed with my Sambar so far.

GIRTHQUAKE said:

Oh, this is shaping up to be awesome.

As for engine swaps- Tom's Turbo Garage so far has reported that he has NO idea what engine you could put into the car because of the lack of space, outside of motorcycle engines (which aren't his specialty) and the only other 3-cylinder engine I can think of is the turbocharged Ford Fox-series and the old Geo engines. Obviously, it must be powered by electricity instead.

To me it feels like a year long stagnation. Nothing can ever move fast enough! But the turbo is shipping out so at least there will be some fun updates in the near future.

There's tons of width in the back of the Autozam, but the issue is with length. Between the bellhousing and the driver side strut tower there is only room for three cylinders. I agree with Tom, swaps are not a great prospect unless you have something up your sleeve. Mine is more of a sidestep than an upgrade and is the same dimensions as the stock engine. A rotary may fit in the engine bay but it's going to add hundreds of pounds of weight. I do know that the Hayabusa has been done before but I have seen no photographic evidence of the completed project. A 1.0L Ecoboost has been suggested in the past and the new 1.5 in the Fiesta ST might be a decent option, but between the two the 1.5L would be the only upgrade over the stock block since the F6A is so fantastically overbuilt. You mention the G10 engine. I wonder what Elio will have for us, since they started with the 1.0L from the Metro for their car.

Sam Baker in New Zealand was putting together an electric swap for his AZ-1 and it had a lot of promise, but a combination of his being a genuine Mazdaspeed and therefore being worth a ton of money as well as personal reasons pushed him to abandon the swap and sell his Autozam. I think it makes a lot of sense. Removing the ~250 lbs of engine and transmission leaves you lots of room to install tons of batteries while still maintaining the OE weight. I like my cars to have lumpy, unpleasant torque curves so electric isn't my thing. For a project, anyway.

timberwolffxdl
timberwolffxdl New Reader
2/6/19 2:42 p.m.

A quick scan through thread didn't see it mentioned, but have you seen the AZ1 work Tom has been doing on youtube?  Tom's Turbo Garage is the channel.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
2/18/19 12:21 p.m.

Here's kind of a non-update. The transmission went out on the Eclipse last week and the Sambar's blower motor died this morning for the second time, so the truck is without heat or defrost. I'm out of options at this point so I'm hoping that it stays above freezing and I can just keep driving the Sambar until it warms up enough to replace the clutch in the Miata. 

Financially, the DSM transmission wouldn't be too much of an issue if I didn't have a honeymoon planned for May. Spending is on hold for the time being because my husband has never been out of the country and I want to make his first time spectacular.

timberwolffxdl said:

A quick scan through thread didn't see it mentioned, but have you seen the AZ1 work Tom has been doing on youtube?  Tom's Turbo Garage is the channel.

I knew of Tom back when I first had a DSM and he was doing 4G63 videos. Tom and I chatted a few times online when he got his Autozam but that was about it until I ran into him once. Funny story. I had always wanted to go to the DSM Shootout but the last time I had a DSM I was in school and couldn't make it work. Every year. For six straight years. Last year when I got my Eclipse I put it on my calendar and made it happen. But I was still putting the engine back together and the build was held up by the shop incorrectly tapping my turbo's exhaust housing, so the DSM wasn't roadworthy. I took the Autozam to the Shootout instead. 

Turns out Tom was there as well, in a glorious (borrowed) Dangan ZZ. I flagged him down and asked him why he didn't roadtrip in the Autozam. After all, that's what I had done. He kind of half-smiled, said that it wasn't the most comfortable vehicle, and drove away. I went about my day, not really thinking much of it, but he hunted me down later to apologize. He hadn't recognized me at first and thought I was just making E36 M3 up to impress him or something, and it wasn't until after he had driven away that he recognized me. He insisted that I drive the Mitsubishi, and long story short (too late) we must have talked for 90 minutes or so about his plans, my plans, the Dangan, etc. He is a great guy and I wish that he hadn't been on media duty because I could have talked with him all day.

To more directly answer your question, I watched his first few videos when he first got the AZ-1 and was cleaning it up and of course I checked the DSM Shootout video to see if I was in it, but I haven't had a chance to watch any of the more recent stuff. His videos are always great, though, and even though I haven been in the community longer than he has I have learned a lot from him. 

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/18/19 6:43 p.m.

In reply to randman2011 :

Hopefully the weather breaks up there soon(yeah I saw there’s another storm in the forecast...), replacing the Miata’s clutch seems like the quickest & cheapest option, while not being terribly difficult or time consuming. 

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
2/19/19 1:18 p.m.
Pete Gossett said:

In reply to randman2011 :

Hopefully the weather breaks up there soon(yeah I saw there’s another storm in the forecast...), replacing the Miata’s clutch seems like the quickest & cheapest option, while not being terribly difficult or time consuming. 

As someone who absolutely loves winter, I hate this. I want to go out and play in the snow with my AWD monster, but the gods did not wish it to be so. I already have all of the Miata parts from back when I thought that I would fix it in August. A brand new OEM Sambar blower motor is already on order from Fuji Heavy Industries so there's no more money investment needed there either. And I've already had the dash out once. And I have a radio that needs to go in as well as a gauge cluster with six digit odometer and an actual trip counter, so the Sambar will hold me over once the parts come in. Like the Autozam, the Miata's chassis is in too good of shape to expose to the salt. And also the Star Specs are so heat cycled and abused that they can't even handle rain below 40, let alone winter. 

That reminds me, I completely forgot to post the pictures from last weekend.

It started snowing right as I got there and boy was getting the cars back home a disaster. The Sambar couldn't get up my driveway and the Miata nearly didn't get home at all. It left the road once and involved about 45 minutes of pushing just to get it the two blocks to my house. No chance that it would get up the driveway so it hung out with the truck until the temperatures came up enough to melt the snow again.

klipless
klipless Reader
4/1/19 11:37 a.m.

Epic thread. Not sure how this one stayed off of my radar for so long. Good to see another RHIT alum on the board ('03 ME).

Congrats on the car and your perseverance. You seem to have a much higher tolerance for mechanical Murphy's law than I do.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/29/19 3:02 p.m.

 So back in 2017 my plan was to swap the DOHC F6A into my Jimny and as a result I acquired a Monster Sport N2 ECU and the associated fuel injectors since they are discontinued and rare and the price was very good. Well, the HT07-4A turbo arrived a week ago and since the Jimny is now long gone, I decided to install it into the Autozam to hold me over until I can make more progress on the K6A. The plan was to acquire an HT07 rebuild kit and/or have a professional rebuild it before I did anything with it, but I stopped paying attention to the tracking pretty much as soon as it was loaded on the boat so its arrival was a complete surprise. Turbo swapping in this car is really easy and completely reversible so I figured worst case scenario it's already blown and I swap back. Shaft play was appropriately minimal but the whole thing was coated in oil.

I can't do anything with pictures while I'm at work so I'll hold off on the details until I get home, but holy E46 M3!

A friend of mine came out to Indianapolis to help me swap the flywheel and clutch that I purchased for the Miata back in August but we couldn't get the transmission out. I fooled around with it for another week with no success before I got a quote from the dealership that I was quite pleased with. I threw everything back together and drove it there. Well I picked it up a week ago. They told me that the new, stiffer pressure plate was just enough to expose the weakness in my old clutch slave cylinder. In reality, the clutch pedal went all the way to the floor and I had to drive it through downtown in rush hour traffic with no clutch at all. On a tune that doesn't start very well and especially doesn't start with a heatsoaked fuel rail.The 20 minute drive took an hour. The clutch hydraulics kit (master, slave, stainless line, fluid) arrived and I went to install it, only to find a few things:

  1. The dealership hadn't installed several of the gaskets and seals that I had provided. They are only accessible with the transmission off (for example, transmission input seal) and they were expected to be replaced with the clutch.
  2. The dealership had lost at least one OE bolt and had replaced it with something aftermarket. One of the two bolts that holds the slave cylinder to the transmission and replaced the 12mm bolt with one with a 13mm / 1/2 inch head. It is now the only 13mm bolt on the entire car unless they lost more that I haven't discovered yet.
  3. There wasn't actually anything wrong with the slave cylinder. For S&Gs I decided to bleed the system before I opened it up and I got it working flawlessly. I replaced everything anyway since I already had the parts and the time set aside, but it would have been nice if they had just done their job in the first place.

But it's back together and working now. And I also started over with the tune, since I somehow managed to configure the Megasquirt for a 2.0L engine instead of 1.8L, which in retrospect explained why my VE values were around 65%. The car is so much smoother now, and it breaks my Star Specs loose in third. Now I just need to get the Autozam up to this level of performance.

klipless said:

Epic thread. Not sure how this one stayed off of my radar for so long. Good to see another RHIT alum on the board ('03 ME).

Congrats on the car and your perseverance. You seem to have a much higher tolerance for mechanical Murphy's law than I do.

'15 CpE. Thanks! I'm so good at Mechanical Murpy's Law that I should put MML on my resume! I've started publishing my automotive life's story on Oppositelock and now I get periodic messages from all kinds of people that just say, "Holy E36 M3, I just read Part 8. Holy E36 M3."

I might actually get a chance to go to Homecoming this year. If I'm there, I'll be hanging around TRM's area in the BIC. Come say hi if you'll be there. Or just say hi to the team in general and laugh at their 13b turbo-powered 914 because who thinks that's a good idea?

 

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/30/19 4:55 p.m.

This is where I spent the entirety of my Thursday:

The rear firewall is a thin, sharp sheet metal so by the end of it I had gashes and red marks all over both of my forearms. It definitely looked quite questionable when I went out in public the next day. Here's what the engine bay looks like stock:

The downpipe is bolted to the block with a very robust cast bracket so it is incredibly difficult to maneuver the turbo around in here. I did eventually get the old turbo out, and this is what it looks like. That's all the space that the turbo gets.

Here's a photographic comparison of some of the turbos that I have. Far left is a 2g DSM T25 (250hp max), middle is the HT07 upgrade turbo (130hp max), and right is the stock RHB31 (80hp max). PB Blaster for scale.

The inlet on the HT07 is a whole 6mm larger in diameter than the factory unit (30mm vs 36mm) so I had to enlarge the aluminum compressor inlet pipe. I didn't think to take a "before" picture but here is what it looked like after about 10 minutes of grinding. You can see a few of the measurements that I had scratched into the surface to mark 36mm.

I couldn't do much more than enlarging the flange to smooth the transition because the walls of the pipe were already starting to get thin in a few places. A port and polish this was not; I was essentially just gasket matching. A certain someone on Minkara claims that this makes a significant improvement in spool and peak flow, but I seriously doubt it makes any noticeable difference at all. And by the way, here's how much clearance there is between the turbo compressor housing, the oil filter, and a water line to the oil filter housing. I had to grind a fair amount off of the compressor housing to get it to fit at all. I tried to bend that water pipe a little bit to make more room but ended up rotating the oil filter housing a bit so I gave up on that.

And here's another irritating discovery. This turbo isn't actually water cooled. Yes, it has a flange that accepts the water lines from the factory turbo, but there's more to it than that. Here are the water ports on the RBH31.

Notice how the two ports are largely inline with the bolt holes and how there are, in fact, two of them? Well here's the HT07.

One large port. It's arranged in such a way that the OE water fitting didn't overlap the opening so the HT07 fitting had to be used. Not a big deal except that the hard lines are larger, so I had to replace the rubber lines as well. Also not a huge deal, but that singular port on the Hitachi tuurbo doesn't actually go anywhere. It's just a small cavity off to the side of the CHRA to allow coolant to continue to flow through the lines. There are no channels going into the CHRA anywhere, which is probably for the best since a lack of flow would mean that the coolant would just boil off anyway. There's nothing that I can really do about it, so I put everything back together.

Since the Autozam was already under the wrench, I swapped out one of the trunk hinges that had arrived in the same package as the turbo. The old one had been bent at an autocross in Ohio and the deformation was just enough to make it lose all structural integrity. I couldn't use the hood prop to hold the lid open because the lid would just flop around and close halfway. This is why you don't let other people close your trunk, I guess.

The damage really doesn't look bad, but it's not like the hinge is that robust to begin with. Before I put the lid back on I decided to drive the car round the block to check for leaks and things. First observation. The car was smoking like a Frenchman. The turbine housing was quite oily when I installed it so maybe it just needed to burn off? Second observation. BIG puddle of oil under the car. The because I had accidentally clocked the oil filter housing ever so slightly during install, I broke the seal and oil was leaking. A strap wrench didn't have enough clearance to operate so I ended up prying between one of the hard coolant lines and the AC compressor bracket to rotate the housing. I got it a little tighter than it was originally, but as shown in the previous pictures, there just isn't any extra room here. I tried starting the car again and the smoke was no less than before. Out came the trusty Seafoam. I sucked it into the engine through a vacuum line and let it sit while I cleaned up the oil spill, then hit the road. 

I will say it's really weird driving around without the giant spoiler in the rearview. I very much don't like it. I also didn't like the fact that I had left off the access panel in the firewall so the BOV was dumping right at the back of my head. But there weren't any boost leaks and the coolant was all staying inside the engine, so I went home to finish the job.

Except that I had left the nuts that attach the trunk lid to the hinges resting on the fenders while I worked. And I hadn't moved them before I went out on the drive. And it had just started raining. I retraced the drive on foot, scanning the road for a set of four small 10mm nuts. I magically came across two of them on top of a pile of gravel and sand but 15 minutes of additinal searching didn't reveal the remaining two. I was interrupted by a car pulling up beside me and rolling down the window. It was my husband, and the only words that came out of his mouth were, "What did you lose?" Because he knows. This happens a lot. I showed him one of the nuts in my hand. He laughed, wished me luck, and continued home.

I called the local Mazda, Mitsubishi, Kia, Suzuki, and Ford dealerships to see if any of them had the OE nuts in stock but ended up having to finish off the set at the local hardware store. And once I truly got the car back together, that's when I went out to get some driving impressions. 

First thought: What have I done? The boost threshold moved from 2700 RPM to 5000 RPM and there was absolutely no power below that threshold, so my shift point was 6500 RPM just around town. Peak torque was much smoother and had lost all of its character. The car felt no faster and torque was still dropping off on the top end. But I had turned the boost controller down a bit just in case, so maybe turning up the boost would help. I'd drive about 100 yards, then pull over and give the controller a full turn, then drive another 100 yards to check peak boost. But even after five complete turns it was still pushing only 11 psi. I was worried that I had switched the two wastegate lines since the controller is directional, but finally on the sixth turn boost went up to 12 psi. And boy did that change things. The engine somehow found a bunch of off-boost torque. Peak torque hit much harder and was much more exciting. The boost threshold unsurprisingly didn't change, but because of the newfound low end torque, my shift point dropped to 4000 RPM.

There's an on-ramp coming from my favorite Costco, and it's shaped in such a way that as soon as it straightens out I floor it in 3rd, and by time it opens up to merge onto the highway I'm going about 65 and can slide the transmission into 5th. Well, my test drive included a stop at Costco so I got to experience that on-ramp with the new turbo. Same thing I always do (mostly because I wasn't thinking about the new turbo at this point) but when I went to switch lanes I glanced at the speedo and was quite shocked. The car didn't really feel any faster, but I was going an indicated 140km/h. 90 mph. So it is actually much faster.

And on top of that, it is MUCH easier to drive. It has a relatively large throttle body and previously had a very small turbine housing, so very small changes in throttle would mean the difference between 10inHG vacuum and the full 12 psi of factory boost. It was infuriating and I'm sure quite bad for fuel economy. With the new turbo, the boost threshold is right at 70 mph in 5th so it the turbo is much slower to respond, but the abundant torque in that area means that that's not a bad thing. Between that and the much larger turbine housing being less of an exhaust restriction, I expect to see a fair increase in fuel economy. Well, if I could keep my foot out of it, but this is way too much fun. I'm still on my first tank of gas so I don't have any data to report yet.

Additionally, there was some discussion in the AZ-1/Cara Facebook group about the various Monster Sport ECUs since some had shown up at an auction in Japan. I was translating the documentation for the N1 and N2 to post in the group when I found that the N2 is actually supposed to run 1.2 bar boost. So of course I cranked the boost controller up to 17.5 psi and holy E36 M3. It's rightfully quick now! But, frustratingly, it still only holds torque to about 8000 RPM, leaving me another 2500RPM of unused glory before redline. And I think I know why.

The factory downpipe.....good lord. I tried to get a picture to express its size with a screwdriver for scale but it's very hard to photograph. 

It's a sharp 90 degree bend right out of the turbo while also narrowing to the size of a quarter. It expands past that to over two inches in diameter, but the damage is already done. I'm not going to be able to do much more with the car until I replace this downpipe with something better. I scanned online for existing aftermarket options but I haven't found anything. The kits that I see are only compressor outlet, exhaust manifold, and sometimes a heatshield. Not that it matters too much because I'm not keeping this turbo after the engine swap and my money is better spent on the K6A anyway. I'll just have to put up with this restriction for now.

And speaking of money, the husband and I are buying a new house. Closing is on May 15th. So not only does this mean that money will be gone until we sell the current house, but it also puts pressure on me to get all of my cars running so they can be driven to the new place. That's why I pushed to get the Miata done, and now I have to focus on getting the new transmission into the Eclipse. But on the positives, THREE CAR GARAGE! And I have already gotten approval from the husband to run a gas line to the garage for a heater. I do lose my work area in the basement but this garage is 30 feet deep so there should be plenty of room out there for the workbench, engine stand, and associated shenanigans. And maybe this will also force me to organize my piles of car parts...

Fish
Fish None
8/25/19 11:54 p.m.

Holy crap, i just read the entire thing. What a journey! Glad to see youre still working on the autozam

Wagon Drifter
Wagon Drifter None
12/19/19 4:30 p.m.

Let me start here: I have an Autozam.

It's been down for quite a while, and I'm now in a position to get it back running, but since I'm working on it, I might as well make it go a little faster.  I'd love to follow your K6A swap lead too, but I want to focus more on building a Stagea in the near future once they are legal for import, so I'm going to stick to the F6A.  I'm super excited that I've only got a couple more years to wait on an insane wagon, I've been waiting since 1999!  Good ole Gran Turismo 2, wrecking my life with strange JDM dream cars.

I am greatly considering getting an HT-07, and I want to know, are you running it with just a boost controller and the stock ECU, a tuned ECU, or is the MegaSquirt already in the car with the F6A?  I read through this again, and still am uncertain.  I'm asking because I want to get my AZ-1 just a bit quicker, it will largely be an autocross/Tail of the Dragon weekend car.  The fact its just a fake water inlet/outlet on the Hitachi turbo concerns me for long runs on the mountain, but good torque and 100-120hp is PLENTY in this car for me, so I'd like to know how that HT07 is holding up, and how you set it up on the tuning side.

P.S: I love how you have done a lot similarly as I have, from getting an AZ-1, a cool new car like my STi (for you the RS) [and needing a loan to sell it], to importing more cars after the AZ-1, (for me, a Skyline GTSt to replace my STi, and a Wagon R daily driver [with an F6A, too!]).

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
2/28/20 10:21 a.m.
Wagon Drifter said:

Let me start here: I have an Autozam.

It's been down for quite a while, and I'm now in a position to get it back running, but since I'm working on it, I might as well make it go a little faster.  I'd love to follow your K6A swap lead too, but I want to focus more on building a Stagea in the near future once they are legal for import, so I'm going to stick to the F6A.  I'm super excited that I've only got a couple more years to wait on an insane wagon, I've been waiting since 1999!  Good ole Gran Turismo 2, wrecking my life with strange JDM dream cars.

I am greatly considering getting an HT-07, and I want to know, are you running it with just a boost controller and the stock ECU, a tuned ECU, or is the MegaSquirt already in the car with the F6A?  I read through this again, and still am uncertain.  I'm asking because I want to get my AZ-1 just a bit quicker, it will largely be an autocross/Tail of the Dragon weekend car.  The fact its just a fake water inlet/outlet on the Hitachi turbo concerns me for long runs on the mountain, but good torque and 100-120hp is PLENTY in this car for me, so I'd like to know how that HT07 is holding up, and how you set it up on the tuning side.

P.S: I love how you have done a lot similarly as I have, from getting an AZ-1, a cool new car like my STi (for you the RS) [and needing a loan to sell it], to importing more cars after the AZ-1, (for me, a Skyline GTSt to replace my STi, and a Wagon R daily driver [with an F6A, too!]).

I am so sorry that I didn't see this prior to now! And that I haven't posted any updates since before I moved into this house! I would 100% recommend NOT doing a K6A swap. Performance-wise, with just a clutch and some bolt-ons you can get the original F6A up past 130 daily driver-reliable horsepower, double the factory output. And it's very streetable at that level. I am ONLY doing the swap because I wanted something difficult. If I put the money that I've already put into the K6A into the original engine I could be pretty close to 200hp right now, and the K6A is still completely stock at 64hp. And even with VVT and even direct injection the K6A only matches the peak torque put out by the F6A. So keep the stock engine and put your money into a turbo, ECU, and brakes.

You very much should not change the turbo and keep the stock ECU. Suzuki Sport (now called Monster Sport) has an N1 ECU that is effectively just a tune on the stock engine and without bumping boost you get a huge increase in torque and power. The N2 ECU, which is what I have, supports larger turbos like the RHB31FW (meh) or the HT07-4A, which is what I have. Just the N2, HT07, 295cc fuel injectors, boost controller, and a downpipe will get me to 130hp. With an programmable ECU and a tuner you can go beyond that. The Suzuki Sport ECUs are out of production but pop up occasionally for sale, but other options exist such as News-GT1's ECUs which would be very similar in performance. But a Megasquirt will be cheaper and more powerful as long as you can tune it properly. 

As far as longevity goes, the turbo (which I never actually rebuilt) has been bulletproof. It doesn't get all that hot because it's so large relative to the displacement and output of the F6A (it originally came on a 1.0L engine) so while I'm not happy about the lack of water cooling it hasn't shown to be a problem. Unlike brake cooling. I can overheat the factory brakes with a single hard stop from whatever the top of 3rd gear is.

RE: Wagon R: Not mentioned above, I have picked up a Suzuki Every Turbo RZ Super Multi Roof. The F6A is just such a good engine that I need more of it in my life. The husband wants me to get a 3rd F6A in a JA12C Jimny. 

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
2/28/20 10:54 a.m.

A couple things have happened since my last update in April. The big thing is that I got the Autozam on a dyno. This is what an N2 ECU and HT07-4A at 17 psi looks like in an otherwise completely stock AZ-1. It's not pretty.

The stock exhaust is so restrictive that I'm losing power BEFORE I even hit peak torque. The Eclipse has blown a transmission, a transfer case, and a second engine in the interim so I haven't done much else with the AZ-1. The rear wheel bearings have finally let go after 150k km of abuse, so I'm going full steam ahead on the knuckle, hub, and brake swap. I have also installed a Navic radiator to attempt to keep things cool and I have acquired a set of coilovers, but those are awaiting the new knuckles before getting installed. So the Autozam is now sitting awaiting some caliper brackets for the rear, which I hope to get installed toward the end of next month. 

If you're curious what happened to the Eclipse's second engine, here's a picture of piston #4. They all look like this. 

Here's what the garage looked like back in November. The only difference now is that the hood is off of the Eclipse and the engine is in Cincinnati. I'm supposed to be picking it up tonight and then it will be all hands on deck to get it running again.

Oh, and I bought a new Miata. And a badass Volvo. And I have another Japanese car on the way. The surprise has been spoiled a little bit, but here's my Suzuki Every Turbo RZ Super Multi Roof, which gets loaded onto a boat in Kawasaki tomorrow.

The picture is definitely not up to my low standards but they guys at port have better things to be doing than snapping detailed photos of cars. This will replace the truck so we stay at 5 cars, but now since we're importing a car again the husband wants me to get him another Jimny, because he has missed our JA11 since we sold it in 2018.

I have no plans for the van at this point other than just being awesome, so once the Eclipse goes back together I can focus all of my money and attention on the Autozam suspension, and then with that out of the way I can FINALLY get back into the K6A business. And there are only two updates on the K6A:

  1. I will probably never find an HA22S Alto Works RS/Z VVT engine harness, but I am able to find K6A engine harnesses from other K6A applications pretty readily. I'm still trying to find the time to identify other cars that got VVT K6A turbos, but even if I don't find one I can at least get a harness with most of the connectors that I need.
  2. The shop in Cincinnati that previously agreed to build the K6A is now off the table. They're who is building the DSM engine and one of the many times that I have been there we talked about the K6A. Even with the bore up kit (68mm to 71mm) the cylinders are still too small for their hone, so they can't help me with that. I'll have to locate a motorcycle shop if I'm going to have the new cylinder liners honed.

And one last thing.

On the way to the store, the husband and I had an incident involving a semi on the highway. The car was totaled and insurance gave me nothing for it, but I sold the chassis to a friend in Cincinnati (the one that crashed the Autozam cough) who dropped his body onto my old frame and has been driving his newly turbocharged NA for a few weeks now. And that's the very short version of how I ended up with a 30th Anniversary Miata. Which I ordered February 2019 and bought on our honeymoon back in May and didn't actually receive until November.

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/28/20 11:35 a.m.

In reply to randman2011 :

Holy berkeley, ouch!!! Glad you guys are presumably ok! If you get sick of dealing with your broken Eclipse & want to let it go for Challenge money, I'll be on my way with a trailer. ;-)

Scotty Con Queso
Scotty Con Queso Dork
2/29/20 7:00 a.m.

Wow. I can feel that Miata wreck in my back and spine. 

And I'm shocked your DSM ate a piston. 20 years of messing with those cars and I've never had one that ran without problems.  Not sure if that speaks to the platform or my lackluster mechanical skills. Likely the latter. 

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/2/20 3:14 p.m.

Since I'm doing a ton more research this week, here's some random K6A VVT info:

The first generation Suzuki Lapin (HE21S), a rebodied retro-styled Alto hatchback, had two engine options. You could get a turbo engine or a VVT N/A one. The second generation used the same two engine options but for market reasons the turbo model is exceedingly rare. No HE23S generation exists because the third generation uses the R06A engine and is called HE33S. Fun fact! The Japanese name for the Lapin appears to be Alto Lapin and the word used for the car phonetically translates to Altra Pan. There was a limited variant called Chocolat, making it the Altra Pan Chocolat. 

The 5th generation Alto had a turbo VVT K6A in the pre-facelift (HA22S) Alto Works with a manual transmission or optioned with AWD. This is where I sourced mine. The faceflited HA23S Alto had three transmission options. The three speed automatic used a basic K6A. The four speed automatic used a VVT N/A K6A. The 5 speed manual is unknown as I have yet to find a single example of one for sale or parted out, but Suzuki's marketing materials claim that this would have a VVT engine as well. The 6th and 7th generations may have potentially all had VVT engines but more research is needed. At this point Suzuki's marketing material stopped providing information about engines and instead only talked about fuel economy and interior electronics. Like the Lapin, the latest generation Alto (HA36S) switched to the R06A engine which is no beuno.

No Every or Carry ever got VVT until the R06A arrived in 2015 but fun fact, all turbo Everys since 2015 have VVT. 

One year into the second generation Wagon R (MC22S), all N/A examples got a VVT engine. The turbo models continued with the F6A until the MC12S was finally discontinued in 2001, so Fun fact, this was the last Suzuki kei vehicle to come with an engine with two valves per cylinder. Fun Fact 2: less than two years later, the MH21S Wagon R became the first kei car to feature direct injection in the Wagon R RR-DI. This of course never came with VVT.

Even though the Suzuki Kei Works is allegedly the successor to the Alto Works, the latter's VVT turbo engine did not carry over into the HN21S or HN22S Kei. Keeping with the same trend as the previous vehicles, N/A versions got VVT and turbo versions did not. There are no fun facts about this car because there is nothing fun about this car. It was lifted, gained 10% more weight, and got even less interior space because crossover and was so wildly popular that Suzuki discontinued it after the first generation.

So this all unfortunately supports my much earlier hypothesis that one can get a VVT K6A engine easily and one can get a turbo K6A engine easily, but the only source of a K6A VVT turbo is the HA22S 1999-2000 Alto Works, and even then only AWD or manual examples, not the most common FWD automatic.

After all of this research I decided to check for an HA22S Alto Works VVT engine harness one last time before settling on acquiring a N/A VVT harness for my engine and what do I happen to see? Not one but TEN VVT turbo K6As for sale right now. Five of them are complete and include the engine harness. I called up a friend in Cincinnati who wants to play with kei performance things and he suggested going in on a pallet to grab a bunch of these. So now I get to think about what else I might want from Japan that I can buy with my zero remaining money.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/6/20 9:04 p.m.

Not that I really expect this to matter or anyone else to care, but I learned today that the VVT HA22S Works engine uses a metal-cased ECU with four JEC connectors.

This is in contrast to every single other HA22S engine option and all contemporary and subsequent K6A applications which used a plastic cased ECU with two oblong (Bosch?) connectors with four rows of pins each. HA22S non-VVT pictured below.

Unrelated: today I learned of the Suzuki Cervo and now I kind of want an F6A turbo-swapped Mighty Boy. Like this one:

Also the Every arrived at port today. I am still arranging shipping, but at least the customs paperwork is taken care of now.

Actually, while I'm thinking about it I do have an Autozam update of sorts. Last year I acquired a set of front knuckles and hubs from a Geo Metro convertible and sent them to a friend in Cincinnati to have them rebuilt. I also sent a set of AE86 rear rotors because they use a 4x114.3 bolt pattern and have a very small outer diameter and are not vented. And I also sent a set of Miata NA6 rear caliper brackets because they are the smallest brackets offered on the Miata, are compatible with all Miata calipers from 1989-2005 which have a similar and compatible cable parking brake system as/with the the AZ-1, and would enable me to have a virtually limitless selection of rotors and pads. The rotors are unfortunately just barely too small for the Metro hubs, and the hubs have to be turned slightly to take off about 1mm of diameter. Once that is done, all AE86 rear rotors will fit the rear of my Autozam. The holdup is the design and fabrication of an adapter to mount the NA6 caliper bracket to the Metro hubs. The CAD proof of concept didn't go too well.

It's kind of tight back there. But this is why I studied Computer Engineering. I'l let the Mechanical Engineers figure this one out.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/8/20 11:10 a.m.

Completely by coincidence I got some updates on the knuckle/brake situation last night. 

The hub has been turned ever so slightly so that the AE86 rotors fit. The caliper bracket situation isn't as bad as the rendering made it seem.

There's an extra wing on the sides of the caliper bracket (shown better in the rendering above) that needs trimmed to fit between the posts on the knuckle but no precision modifications need to be made to get the caliper to mount. Dorman sells 6mm longer extended lugs for these hubs as well. The turning of the hub is the only part preventing this from being a kit, which is something that I have been asked many times by other AZ-1 owners. Sam told me that everything would likely be done by the end of the week but it's not like I'm going to drive to Cincinnati to pick them up.

Kenny_S2K
Kenny_S2K New Reader
4/8/20 2:53 p.m.

This is very interesting, do you happen to know if the rotor/caliper setup in the AZ-1 is the same as the Cappuccino?  I know we have very limited options on the Cappuccino as well... and it would be great if there was an alternative for rotors/brake pads.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
4/9/20 2:21 p.m.

In reply to Kenny_S2K :

The Cappuccino has very little in common with any other vehicle. The engine block castings are shared with the AZ-1 and Alto Works, the transmission is shared with the JA11 Jimny, and that's it. The Cappuccino already has a much better hub and suspension setup so the only things needed for that would be calipers, rotors, and an adapter bracket. I don't know the sizes of the original Cappuccino rotors, but the AE86 rear rotor should fit the rear of the Cappuccino and the NA6 (or even NA8/NB) rear calipers would be a good choice. And things are even easier on the front since it's very easy to find vented rotors to fit a 4x114.3 bolt pattern. I haven't settled on rotors myself but I think I'm going to go with NA8/NB non-Sport front calipers just to make my life easier. I had a discussion with Sam last night about that option and about a way to get brakes on the front of the Autozam without having to modify any knuckles.

I'll see if I can get some caliper measurements for the Cappuccino. Who knows. Maybe they just happen to share bolt spacings and the caliper bracket adapter could be used for both applications?

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
5/13/20 3:20 p.m.

Rear knuckle swap. Long story short, this would totally work but I'm not going to proceed with it. Details below.

  1. The toe arm is much longer on the Metro knuckle, moving the ball joint rearward and inward. This will bias the car more toward understeer with body roll. This might not be a bad thing with appropriately stiff rear springs but it's not what I'm after.
  2. The Metro knuckle moves the bottom of the strut 10mm inward. The spring and perch still clear everything on both my Mazdaspeed suspension and my Navic coilovers, but the brake line support on the rear of the strut fouls the frame rail. It would be an easy fix to cut the tab off and include a bolt-on bracket to handle the brake line support, but I'd rather not require people modify their struts. I am unsure if the knuckle reduces the rear track but that would be a big no-no for many reasons if it does.
  3. The bolt spacing for the strut mount is ever so slightly wider on the Metro knuckle. This is well documented and the Alto guys solve the problem by running smaller diameter bolts at the bottom of the strut. To me that's not an acceptable solution and neither is requiring people enlarge the bolt holes on their struts to accommodate.
  4. These knuckles are still generally available used, but they're discontinued and getting rarer by the day.

So instead, I'm scrapping this idea and moving toward a kit that will reuse the stock knuckle. The hub still has to be swapped because the original is far too large to fit a rotor over and it can't be turned down without seriously compromising its integrity. Unfortunately there were no other USDM vehicles with 4x114.3 hubs that use 23 spline axles, so used Metro units are the only option that isn't importing expensive new parts from Japan. I was also hoping to find a hub with a unform flange so it could be drilled for 4x100 in case people want that option, but the Metro unit won't work for that. I may do some research into 4x100 hubs later, but that's a low priority. The new plan is this:

  • Factory knuckle
  • 95+ or convertible Metro front hubs
  • The appropriate mixture of bearings, seals and spacers to join the two
  • NA6 Miata rear calipers, brackets, and pads
  • Original brake lines
  • Toyota AE86 rear rotors
  • Custom fabricated caliper adapter bracket
  • Custom fabricated parking brake cable adapter kit (2 pieces)

This way, all consumables are off-the-shelf parts for other more common cars that can be used without modification. Additional benefits are the complete elimination of the captive rotor setup, increasing wheel studs from M10 to M12, which are VERY significantly stronger, the same brake dimensions so wheel compatibility will be the same as stock, readily available slotted, drilled, and/or cryo treated rotors which are slightly thicker than stock for more heat capacity, and a much larger pad for more grip and less wear. Parts have already been dropped off at the machine shop. Once this is done and my AZ-1 is back on the road I can get started on a front kit, which is MUCH easier.

The front will be similar, using the original knuckle and Metro hub and the same combination of bearings and seals to make everything fit. The rotor can be from a convertible or 95+ Metro, Suzuki Swift GT, or from an early 240SX depending on which parts are cheaper/easier to get and the calipers are likely to be from an NA8 Miata. 

Wagon Drifter
Wagon Drifter New Reader
6/19/20 3:49 p.m.

Hey randman!

So, after some research and a blown turbo, I went with an HT07 on my Autozam, and I have the same issue as you with the new turbo having larger coolant lines.  What did you do to make sure that the lines you got for it fit both the coolant lines on the engine and the larger pipes on the HT07?  Did you just use a larger diameter coolant line and clamp it really well on the smaller engine side fittings?

I may try this, but am wary of it leaking coolant on the smaller engine side fittings.

EDIT: I found some nice pliable transmission oil cooler line that fit the bill with some hose clamps, not too tight on the large end and not too loose on the small end.  I love sub-$10 fixes.  It does run around the oil filter now though, so I opted to make sure I have a hex nut topped oil filter for easier changing.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
6/22/20 11:23 a.m.
Wagon Drifter said:

Hey randman!

Did you just use a larger diameter coolant line and clamp it really well on the smaller engine side fittings?

I happened to have some bulk coolant line that was right between the HT07 size and the factory size, so it was pretty tight on the turbo and I used some beefy hose clamps on the engine side. Sounds like that's what you ended up with as well.

randman2011
randman2011 New Reader
9/28/20 8:37 p.m.

I spoke to the guy that has my knuckles today. Hopefully there will be some movement by the end of the week, but there's still no ETA for the return to the road. In similar news, I got a notice to renew my plates for 2021 and I never even put the sticker on for 2020. It's one year parked this week.

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