Wilfreddy New Reader
5/31/21 5:29 a.m.



I am wondering about buying a used Mazda 929 Hardtop manual 1.8 liter from 1975. I know the guy selling and he is really nice. He says i can get it for respectively about 350 dollars, (3500 sek). It has a bunch of old planks on top but chassi and engine is in really good condition. Only 9000 km and hasnt been driven since 1991. Me and my dad think it might start after we put the planks away and do some lumber work outside the garage door (big trees are blocking the garage door). I am wondering what kind of power it's safe to put in these things. It is a VB, and we are planning to go for some variant of the dual Weber  config. And more aggressive cams. I doubt anyone has experience of the cars limit but I thought I'd find a car forum and ask.


Thanks in advance!

Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter)
Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/31/21 9:06 a.m.

In reply to Wilfreddy :

The first thing with a 30-year old car is to plan on replacing all the rubber components: tires, belts, radiator hoses, brake lines, fuel lines, vacuum lines, etc. Even if they look like they're in perfect condition, they'll likely fail quickly once the car is put back in use. 

You'll also probably need to replace the brake caliper seals(and wheel cylinder seals if it has drum brakes in the rear). 

Don't be surprised if you get engine leaks from valve cover gasket, and the front & rear main seals. I don't know which engine it has, but if it's the BP 1.8 plan on changing the timing belt before you attempt to start it!

I resurrected a 1991 Miata 3 years ago. In addition to all the things above, I also had to replace the fuel pump & filter, rebuild the shifter, replace the transmission output seal(the input seal had been replaced before I got it), replace the driveshaft, replace the radiator, and put fresh fluids in the trans & diff.

It's a lot of work, but at least for the Miata the parts are cheap. The more things you can take care of before you start driving the car, the more reliable it will be, and the less time you'll have to spend repairing it later on.

Wilfreddy New Reader
8/7/21 1:55 p.m.

Thanks, that is helpful, sorry I'm late to answer though. We bought the car and I've gotten the rear drumbrakes off aswell as cleaning everything. Next we plan on replacing the now exposed drumbrake-parts. Would it really be neccessary to replace the driveline? The seals I get and I guess we will have to custom make them but do the driveline?


Thanks for the answer!

In reply to Wilfreddy :

Would you rather fix all that stuff now, or have to continually fix it as it breaks while you're trying to use the car? Maybe not every single one of those hoses/gaskets/seals will fail, but any of them could fail, and at any time. 

7/29/22 10:42 a.m.

I bought a 83 Mazda B2000 (MA 2.0/5sp) and it ran great and didnt leak after 10 years of sitting. I also bought a 72 (!) Courier with the same 1.8 you got and it didnt leak although the #3 cylinder was junk due to standing water from a head gasket failure. If your worried bout seals failing, you'll die quickly. Run it and fix it when it fails or if its apart, proactively replace them but to strip down a mystery motor just to replace all the seals is for the young and rich. 


jfryjfry SuperDork
8/1/22 10:03 a.m.

Brake system seals and rubber pieces are cheap and pretty easy.  Plus a failure of almost any of these parts could easily lead to injury or death to you or some who happens to be near you. 

the rest of the stuff will just leave you stranded at worst.  

i'd replace brake stuff, whatever you see that is bad and then fire it up.  Short little drives to see what else is bad. Then drive it!

8/9/22 5:33 a.m.

That is helpful; I apologize for the delay in my response. I removed the rear drum brakes and cleaned words from letters everything after we bought the automobile. We then intend to replace the drumbrake components that are now exposed. If you worry that the seals won't work, you'll pass away swiftly. Run it and fix it when it breaks or replace them proactively if it's apart, but stripping down a mystery motor to just replace the seals is for the young and wealthy.

Darwinz New Reader
8/12/22 12:29 a.m.

That's one interesting project. Share the progress if you can

Our Preferred Partners