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BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
7/24/17 3:42 p.m.

Registered it today and took it to the same shop that looked after my 996 as they work both on BMWs and Porsches. The main reason was because of the whinier supercharger. They went over it, gave it a general thumbs up but did point out that the s/c was a little noisier than they like them to be, plus there was minimal weeping at the waterpump. Like, you had to look really hard to see it minimal, but it was there. Even though they thought that both still have a few thousand miles left if not more, I'm going for a replacement of both in the next few weeks for peace of mind and to prevent them from going south at exactly the most inconvenient moment.

They also found a couple more interesting things - the car has reinforcement plates for the strut tops on it already, but they were the kind that mounts under the front strut tops, so I didn't see them. It turns out that it "only" has the JCW engine package, no LSD, and standard Cooper S brakes. The latter definitely look like they need some help.

Other than that, a couple of minor things - it wants a new S/C belt and idler pulley, and they recommended swapping out the relatively new stock LCAs for Powerflex ones. That was pretty much it.

And yeah, this really belongs in a build thread. I'm hoping to open one next weekend.

Aspen Reader
7/25/17 9:52 a.m.

R53 JCW brakes are just stock R56 brakes, so you can upgrade to the R56 ones for not too much cash, but you may want to go bigger if this is to be a track car. R56 rear brakes can also be mounted with some clearancing for the parking brake cable. I was able to pick up a set of R56 stock brakes for cheap from someone upgrading. Otherwise the rear calipers are a frightening price from the stealership.

Too bad about the lack of LSD.

N7Prime Reader
7/25/17 9:17 p.m.

The Wavetrac LSD Transformed my R53. Good luck on your adventures.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
7/25/17 11:36 p.m.

Seriously toying with the idea of getting a Quaife put in. We'll have to see if I consider it worthwhile after driving it for a bit and fixing up the brakes.

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
7/26/17 6:35 a.m.

So it sounds like the car has the dealer-installed JCW kit vs. the factory kit. Another way to tell is the exhaust - on the factory-installed cars, it is a completely welded, one-piece cat-back. On the dealer-installed cars, there is a joint so the exhaust would pack for shipping better.

For brakes, it may depend a bit on what you plan to do with the car. One advantage of the std MCS brakes is you can fit nice 15" wheels like the 6UL's Keith mentioned. I believe Wilwood offers upgrades that improve performance and use the std R53 rotor size.

A Quaife would definitely be a nice addition. Arguably better than the OEM LSD. It would also give you an opportunity to upgrade the clutch.

So far, I've just been driving mine. Passed 95K miles over the weekend.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/23/17 11:44 p.m.

Yay, so it's been in the shop since the last post here. By now the bill has exceeded the purchase price in typical BoxheadTim fashion, too.

The s/c was pronounced ok although a bit whiney and probably not much longer for this world. We then found the water pump starting was to weep and in light of me doing 700+ miles/week for at least 2-3 weeks per month I decided to have that addressed right there and then. That mushroomed into also sticking a Wavetrac into the gearbox and a new clutch with lightened flywheel - saved a bunch of labour as the engine and gearbox were out already. Oh, and some polybushes for the front suspension arms to further sharpen the handling.

Also found in the PO's PPI report that it has Dinan springs with Konis and Dinan strut top plates, so no worries about mushrooming.

Should be getting it back on Monday, really looking forward to that.

BoxheadCougarTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/31/17 12:38 p.m.

Been driving it somewhat since the last post - depending on the state of my left foot, I either drive the Mini to work or fly and rent something with a slushbox.

Ran into the first real "issue" with it - the coolant (header) tank has started to leak at the seams just a little. Not entirely unexpected (they all do that eventually, sir) so it'll be a welcome excuse to put a shiny aluminium tank in instead. Let's hope the "while I'm in there" part doesn't go too far out of hand.

mad_machine GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/31/17 1:09 p.m.

You are not helping my thoughts about these cars, Tim. I sometimes ponder putting my Saab back on the road and selling it to pick up a MINI, just not sure I can support a Landrover, MINI, and an English Sailboat all at the same time without developing a need to wear Tweed

BoxheadCougarTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/7/18 8:26 p.m.

In reply to mad_machine :

You're welcome .

I also bought it some new shoes about a month ago for the snow tires:

Yesterday I got to attack the coolant tank as that wa starting to leak. Unfortunately Pelican was out of the aluminum one I wanted, so the car now sports another OEM tank. I guess I should start a build thread to honor the occasion. Didn't take any photos but recorded a fair amount of video, so this may be my first Youtube'd build thread.

BoxheadCougarTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/7/18 12:41 p.m.

And to celebrate the fact that I got to drive home early and work at least part of the week from home, the check engine light came on.

Checked that the engine is still present (it was), so now I get to dig out the OBD-2 reader and figure out what it's complaining about. That's combined with the Uh-Oh realisation that the engine was running a bit rougher and sounded different at idle. Oh well, at least it got me home.

Better check if the same electrical rodent that mostly immobilised the RX-8 has also been at this car.

BoxheadCougarTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/7/18 2:48 p.m.

Yay, P0171 lean code. According to the Interwebz this can be anything from a dirty MAF to some serious intake leaks leading to burnt exhaust valves.

Or a dirty fuel filter. Well, that one was on the list of things to change already.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/19/18 12:11 p.m.

And the lean code has come back after I reset it. Time to spend some unplanned quality time with this car.

I'm hoping that a) the rodent I saw jumping from the car before I drove off and got the code doesn't have anything to do with it and b) that it's not a throw-parts-at-it extravaganza.

Oh, and it won't be a dirty MAF sensor as it has two MAP sensors instead.

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