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Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/19/21 1:29 p.m.

NB got a new windshield today.  Looking forward to actually being able to see out of it when driving towards the sun.

Also fiddled around a bit on the NA.  

Sold a set of Camaro wheels, so ordered some more Miata parts...  cheeky

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/20/21 9:17 a.m.

So... this is what $1200 worth of front hubs for a Miata looks like:

Hopefully, they'll be the last hubs I buy for the NA.

And here's $100 in rotors for the NB... cheeky

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/21/21 4:38 p.m.

Installed the new front hubs today... 

Here's the blueprinted OEM Mazda hub I put on several years ago...

Compared to the Miatahub...

And installed...

 

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/21/21 4:39 p.m.

The stock hubs that came off will get handed down to the NB.

The pile of parts for the NB is growing...

The rear hubs pictured are going on the NA, and the NA's rear hubs will be hand-me-downs for the NB as well.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/21/21 4:52 p.m.

Received my 1.5" bender dies today...  so the cage is a go as soon as the hard top arrives.

 

I practiced rolling the arch in the main hoop today... and good thing too, since I screwed it up...  cranked it a bit too far.  The SWAG rollers bent it nice and straight... I just need to be a little more careful approaching the mark.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/22/21 1:28 p.m.

Made the 200 mile round trip to Phoenix this morning to pick up a bumper cover for the NB.  I was striking out finding a used one anywhere nearby, and found out the part is still available from Mazda, so I ordered one through a dealer in Phoenix.  $150 cheaper than our local Mazda dealer, but they wouldn't ship it.  ~$27 in gas for the trip, so still cheaper than shipping...  And, all in, probably less than $100 more than I would have ended up paying for a used one that needed work.

Bumper cover is for an NB2 (01-05), as I'll be converting everything over.  Mostly to get the better NB2 headlights, but I do think it looks nicer as well.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/22/21 1:31 p.m.

Saw this interesting beast on the way home... looks like a Kodiak?

 

If I ever upgrade our camper rig, it would probably be something like this... 4500/5500 cab & chassis with a custom flatbed with service truck style storage along the camper sides.  There's a lot of wasted space with a normal pickup bed carrying a camper.  I was kind of surprised the Kodiak above didn't have more storage built in...

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/22/21 4:16 p.m.

More stuff... I feel like I'm singlehandedly trying to keep FedEx, UPS and USPS busy this week... cheeky

Front right LCA for the NB:

Waay back when I put the coilovers on the NB and had it aligned, they couldn't get any negative camber out of the right front.  Everything looks straight underneath, and no signs of damage anywhere, so my theory is someone curbed it at some point and bent the LCA.  I guess I'll find out soon enough, when I get the replacement bolted in.  I've got a few other parts that need to show up for the suspension, so it will probably get done after the brake refresh.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/22/21 4:19 p.m.

And for the NA...

New engine mounts from Blackbird Fabworx.  Since I've basically solid mounted the exhaust, I figured it was time to step up from the Mazda Competition mounts to something a little more serious.

NVH??  What's that??? cheeky

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/23/21 4:58 p.m.

So the front lower control arm was a little crusty (by AZ standards), so I hit it with the wire brush, some primer and paint.  Had to bring it inside and set it in front of the radiant heater between coats.

I considered this an accomplishment, since it was supposed to snow today (it didn't... yet).

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/23/21 5:07 p.m.

What actually turned out to be a battle was the next project.

Miata #3 (my parts/spare roller NB) donated its rear knuckles and hubs to the Great Hub and Bearing Update.  The plan is to install the upgraded rear hubs on these knuckles, and those go on the NA.  The NA's hubs get donated to the street NB.

The axles and knuckles came out of the spare NB without any issues.

The axle nuts put up a real fight.... my electric impact didn't have a chance.  I had my breaker bar looking like a banana with a cheater pipe, until the socket slipped and got flung across the garage... still didn't budge.  They finally succumbed to the cutoff wheel and chisel, however...

Hubs are trash, but they were getting trashed anyway...

I expected the axles to put up a fight, because that's pretty common, but they came out of the hubs with just a light tap with the mallet.

I think a Harbor Freight press is in my immediate future to get these hubs pressed out and the new ones in...

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/23/21 5:10 p.m.

Finally, my NB2 headlights showed up today... wasn't expecting them until Monday.

The passenger side light is a little hazy, and it looks like they've both lenses have been refurbished, but otherwise they're in great shape.  I assumed I would be doing some lens refurbishing, so no big deal.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/23/21 7:26 p.m.

So, this is my 1776th post on GRM... I thought it should be something in the spirit of rebellion...

 

We just ordered this plate for the Grand Cherokee:

 

And one of these will go on the rear window...

mr2s2000elise
mr2s2000elise UltraDork
1/23/21 7:42 p.m.

Did the bronco sell?

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/23/21 10:11 p.m.

In reply to mr2s2000elise :

Yup, to the first guy that looked at it.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/24/21 11:38 a.m.

Had to run to HF this morning to pick up a 12T shop press, so I stopped to take a pic in the Jeep's first snow.  Only got a few inches last night, but forecast is for another foot+ over the next couple of days.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/24/21 2:47 p.m.

Last time I tried to do rear hubs, I bought one of the HF bench top 6 ton presses, and it wasn't up to the task.  Not big enough to get the knuckle in the press.  This morning, I picked up a 12 ton press, which I've been meaning to get for a while.

It made short work of pressing out the old hubs and bearings.

Pressing in the new parts went just as easily.

The hubs are from SadFab, and are modified MR-S hubs which are quite a bit beefier than the standard Miata rear hubs.  I had thought the kit came with the rear seals, but it didn't so I need to pick those up tomorrow.  Also, the bushings on both knuckles came out with thumb pressure, so I ordered a polyurethane replacement.  The NA should be getting a full bushing kit from SadFab in the near future, but these will hold me over until that kit comes in.  The bushings aren't due until Wednesday, so I'm in a holding pattern on the hub swap for now.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/25/21 12:29 p.m.

Finished off the knuckles with installing the axle seals I picked up this morning.

Now just waiting for the knuckle <-> control arm bushing to install these on the NA, then I can get organized for the hub/brake job on the NB.

 

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/26/21 1:07 p.m.

Had a bit of snow the last couple of days... not much compared to real snow country, but quite a bit for our little corner of the AZ mountains.  This morning I dug out the NB...

I'm hoping to get to working on it later in the week, but if I didn't dig it out now, it would have been an icy mess.  And the driveway was already shoveled... 

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/28/21 11:48 a.m.

Got the new knuckles/hubs installed on the NA this morning.

The bearing on the left rear that came off is obviously shot.  Gonna take it apart shortly to take a look and see if the hub is still useable for the NB.  That may throw a wrench in the works.

Also waiting for a call from a Failbooker who is supposed to come buy a set of ZL1 wheel today... radio silence so far.  Good thing I have stuff to do.

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/28/21 2:42 p.m.

Got the motor mounts installed... it was a little tricky getting to all the bolts on the driver's side under the header.  Fortunately, the hard part was getting the stock motor mounts off... getting the BBFW mounts in was pretty easy.

Passenger (not bolted down yet).

Driver

Fired it up just to see how much NVH increased...  you would definitely NOT want these in a street car... cheeky

 

Failbooker still hasn't called... 

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/28/21 4:40 p.m.

Both rears that came of the NA are trashed...  Inner race came out right past the snap ring on both.  Evidence of heat on both hubs.

I'm now reconsidering re-using the front hubs on the NB as well.  Looking at options now. indecision

Failbooker finally messaged at 3pm that he got called into work this morning and wasn't coming today... indecision

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/29/21 9:16 a.m.

Punted and ordered up new front/rear hubs from Advanced Autosport for the NB.  They're a big supplier for Spec Miata and 'blueprint' the fronts and install the ARP wheel studs.  I was hoping to be able to swap the NA stuff over, but that's life.  Definitely didn't want to cheap out on chinesium parts store parts, even though it will be a street car.

 

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/31/21 12:19 p.m.

Waiting for parts to trickle in to start on the NB, so mostly puttering around in the garage today.

I welded casters onto the shop press, so it can join its toolmates in the ongoing game of Garage Tetris.

Also pressed the trashed bearings out of the NA's knuckles so I can get those cleaned up for reassembly and installation on the NB.

It's supposed to hit the low 50s today (currently 42*F), so if it warms up a little more, the Jeep may get its first bath today.  It needs it after a week of snow.  At least the roads aren't salted here...

Rodan
Rodan Dork
1/31/21 12:27 p.m.

I also started on what I thought would be a quick project on the NA, but I was wrong...

Miata differentials have notches in the right arm from the factory...

The reason for the notch has been speculated to be for crash safety, but regardless, it can lead to a stress fracture with extensive track use.  As a result, the right arm is often strengthened by welding in aluminum plates.  K Miata has come up with a very nice set of bolt-in support plates to acheive the same function without welding.

Beveled to fit perfectly into the diff casting, they simply bolt on.

What I didn't consider, when thinking this would be a quick project is drilling the holes.  Which will likely require removing the diff.  Even my right angle drill won't fit in the available space.  So, that little project will be on the back burner for a bit.  I may be able to shorten a drill bit and make it work... didn't have that much motivation today.  cheeky

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