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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: March 24, 2008, 8:37 pm 
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Posts: 7048
Location: Charleston, WV
****Admin Edit: I moved much of this material toanother thread to serve as a reference. It should still be included in his build log so I'm putting it back. :) ****


SteyerMTP wrote:
I brought the harness inside, and spread it out on a 4x8' sheet of plywood on my sawhorses in the basement.

The first few nights I spent taking off all the electrical tape.... now I know where some of those overhead costs are going--rolls of electrical tape. Now that I am done, I have used almost 2/3 of a roll of tape, and I still have not bound a lot of areas, nor have I installed the wire loom pieces.

My dad helped reading the 30+ pages of wiring diagrams, and I'd find the accomodating color wire and location, which really worked out much better than reading the diagram and then digging. Still, it took quite a while to figure everything out--there are a lot of things for daylight driving lights, automatic transmission, abs, etc that are in the harness, just not applied to anything. There were quite a few times I'd find a wire going into one end of a connector, but nothing coming out of the other side.

Items deleted that I can think offhand:

-popup headlight system
-all external lighting
-all internal lighting
-power windows
-power steering
-power mirrors
-power antenna
-rear defogger
-interior heating and cooling
-radio
-cruise contol
-airbag system

Plus things like door ajar warning lights, etc. All in all I could safely say I now have less than 1/4 of what there was originally. I deleted the entire rear wiring harness, which included rear lights, antenna. That saved quite a bit. I'd say my box of wiring weights around 25+lbs.

As I am going to be doing my lighting seperately, using different lights and switches, I decided to delete the entire lighting from the Miata harness.

All that is left is the necessities.

Then, starting yesterday and finishing this afternoon, I re-sized the entire harness. I took out about 3-4' of wiring to fit decently under my scuttle. The only area I am going to have to extend is the "intake fan" cable.

(When stripping the car, I ripped out the MAF sensor figuring it was something to do with emissions, and labeled the cable that went to it as "intake fan", as it looks like a stationary fan... we found it amusing and never relabelled it)

I just got in now from Dzus-ing down the firewall behind the scuttle and cutting a hole for the main engine wiring harness. The rest of the harness is layed out where it should be going, and once I get a few more parts, I will zip-tie it in place. I ordered the automotive clips that have the barb-clip on one end and a zip tie on the other, but will not be using those until I have painted the frame and am putting items in for the final time.

A side note: I have decided my frame will be completely unmolested by holes. The only exception could possibly be the side panels by the drivers and passenger's sides, as the front and rear end are going to be Dzus'ed, and all fasteners will have small steel tabs welded to corners elsewhere, like the wiring and the brake/fuel lines.

Oh well. I am tired for today. If nothing goes on tomorrow, I intend on working on taking the intake manifold off. It's packed with carbon, and there's probably a lot of grinding dust in there as well, as the throttle body has been off of it for quite some time. I want to clean up the engine as much as possible before I get ready to fire it up.

I have aimed to have it running by mid-late spring, and finished by the end of fall. The first should be on schedule, but as I am still without an Aluminium-capable welder, I might have problems there. Oh well.

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I used just shy of 100 butt splices. That means stripping wire 200 times, and crimping 200 times... my poor fingers. Actually, it was not that bad, but my knees were killing me from kneeling on the floor for hours on end. It would have been nice to have had a large table to have done this on.

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Next on the list is to install fuel lines, clean intake manifold, reinstall throttle body and throttle linkage, purchase CAI filter, and fab up the tubing for the CAI.

I have a MAF sensor on the way, it looks like I am going to have to replace the O2 sensor, as it is seized up in the section of tubing it was located in, and I have to extend the EGR tube to the exhaust header and install a bung for it.

I then have to re-route the heating piping, temporarily mount the radiator (no nose cone yet, so not sure of radiator location and angle yet), and hook up all electrical.

I have a Honda S2000 starter button on the way, and I am going to buy a two-position on/off key and switch from Digi-Key, along with circuit breakers and toggle switches.

I need to decide where I am going to mount the tach and speedo, as well as the rest of the dash, and I need to cut out knee-holes in the scuttle.

It's getting there, slowly, but surely!

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PostPosted: April 30, 2008, 3:46 am 
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Well, thing have been going slowly... The cooling is finding itself challenging, as I am trying to re-route a few things and will need to find replacement parts, or fabricate/build onto current parts. Oh well.

Yesterday I finally put the fuel system together, and today I mounted the pump and the small pre-filter. I have to find a hose clamp large enough for the Miata filter, and all that will be in place. The hard lines are in place, but not bolted down. I welded small tabs along the transmission tunnel--6 on each side-- and have small rubber-coated clamps to bolt them down with.

So tonight I wired the fuel pump to a battery and tried it out... it emptied about 2.5-3 gallons in just a few minutes... a small accomplishment, but it was exciting to me :drive:

I just hope the stock regulator will be able to handle it for a little while... I don't want to replace the regulator until I rebuild the engine.

Now I have to finish the cooling, figure where the radiator is going to go, clean the shifter box, plug everything in, bolt everything up tight, and start the engine. I hope to be able to drive it around the block soon!


Attachments:
File comment: 8) This will have to do until I decide to buy the Hoosiers...
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File comment: Dark shots of the pump and filter setup.
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File comment: Same as above. The fuel cell does seem to leak a bit. Not good. I don't want to tighten it anymore or it will strip the plastic? bungs.
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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 7:01 am 
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Location: Champion, Ohio
Last night I worked on the car some more...

I started by pulling the engine.

One thing I learned: You can't take the shifter box off without removing the bell housing. I tried. With a hammer, and two screw drivers. Nope. So I used half a can of WD-40 instead, and made a gasket when I finished.

I also drilled and tapped the thermostat housing where the T broke off. I then installed a 1/8NTP-to-3/8 barb adaptor.

I then dropped the engine back in and went to the back, with a fire extinguisher, and ground down some welds I forgot to grind on the plate that mounts to the differential bracket. That happens to be right beneath the installed fuel tank...

The transmission took a while, so I did not have time to install the axles as I hoped, but that is for the weekend. I am now installing things semi-permanently--they aren't coming out until the car drives.


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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 5:19 am 
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It's been on-and-off lately... A lot of it has to do with waiting on parts... I'm still waiting on my intake parts, which sucks, as I'd love to start it this weekend, although I don't think that's going to happen. Maybe Monday or Tuesday, not sure.

The plumbing has been a complete nightmare. Last post showed my fix for the thermostat housing, but replacing the stock lower housing was much worse. I found a housing that worked alright, but it only had one neck and a threaded hole for one NPT-to-barb connecter--I still had to somehow figure a way for the 1/2" hose for the rear outlet, i.e. the former heater hose. I spent a week checking at different places until finally my dad suggested using a pipe tee... I looked all over for a 1 1/4 x 1 1/4 x 1/2... no luck. I looked for any 1 1/4 elbow... no luck.

Finally, I looked closer at a regular 1" street elbow... and as it's stretched for the 1" pipe to slide in--and the OD is 1 1/4. So I went to Home Depot, grabbed a 1" elbow and a piece of 1/2" pipe, cut a hole and had my dad solder the pipe onto the elbow, and presto. Not perfect, not gorgeous, but it looks like it'll do the job. I don't like having hosing behind the exhaust manifold, but I recovered as much of the original metal pipe that was there as possible.

I also re-used part of the old heater hose to bypass , as it has a J-bend that would crimp on regular hosing.

Last night I welded on the original EGR bung, and with a little stretching, the EGR tube fits. I was going to cut it and bend it to plug into primary 4, but I forgot how long the bung is... that saved me a lot of hassle. I would have done it earlier if I had known that. I installed an O2 sensor bung, but I can't get the original O2 sensor out of the section of exhaust I saved. I'll have to buy a new one... I wonder if I should buy a wide-band O2 sensor...

The radiator is now on. I pulled out my home-made brake press... and almost broke it trying to bend 1/8" strips... I had to place them on the ends towards the bolts holding everything down, and even then it was close, but it worked out. I found some rubber grommets at the hardware store and fitted those in... Mine mounts are pretty much the same as the ones Jack uses, except my radiator is tilted back to allow the nose cone to be as low as possible.

It took me forever to figure out what to do about the hosing. I was not aware flexible metal hosing was available for cars... I've seen the stuff they use on gas stoves, but after a long time of worrying and wondering, I found Flex-A-Line on Summit, and purchased a cheaper version of the same thing. Sadly, Summit didn't have the 36" length nor the 12" when I got there, so I made do with the 20" and 30". The lower hose just barely makes it, and the top is folded all over hell, but it does the job. I have most of the rest of the cooling finished as well. I still have to mount the reservoir and the line that goes to it, and I think I have one more line coming from the intake, I have to check tomorrow.

Tonight I clamped the fuel lines to the fuel rail, after getting confirmation on which goes where, thanks to Hempy, I think... Those old lines were really on there... I almost had to pull the rail out again.

I also mounted the hard lines--fuel on either side of the transmission tunnel, and the brake with the fuel line on one side. I am going to have to mount the electrical, but for right now, I am going to let it take up the passenger's side for access once I get it running.

I think I'm too tired to do much more tonight, which sucks, but before I can start thinking about turning the key (or as there is no key yet, flipping the switch... I'm going to use a switch until I figure out everything I need to buy from Digi-Key, as the start key and switch is only around 12 bucks, and you have to have a 25 dollar minimum... I will need a few circuit breakers as well, but I don't want to order more than necessary. I need to:

- mounr the original filter. I'm going to have to weld on some sort of bracket and fasten a pair of hose clamps to hold it in place. That's the only part of the fuel system not bolted down right now.

- oil change. It hasn't had one since who knows when... as I haven't turned it over since buying the donor, I'm not going to risk it. I already installed some IK22 iridium plugs from the Mini, so that's taken care of...

- flush the engine and fill the radiator and coolant reservoir with coolant.

- install the harness and make grounding points. This should be pretty simple--it's been done before, just removed everything to keep extra grime off of it. Nothing new has to be done, other than wire in the fuel pump and the MAF sensor...

- bolt down front suspension and make a rough alignment. I think I have to clip off a bit more of the tie rod adaptors; I just didn't want to mess with it when I installed them. I'll have to fab up some sort of alignment jig.

- replace/install vaccuum hoses. Ugh. I've been dreading this one. I have to re-route a few lines and put the rest in place. I have the info, I just don't like doing it...

- fill brake, clutch and transmission fluids. Bleed brakes and clutch.

- Bolt in steering assembly.

- Install exhaust gasket and bolt down manifold

- Install intake. I have the filter, the rest of the parts should arrive tomorrow. I'll post up what I think on the supplier board when it gets here.

- Bolt seats and harnesses back in

- I would like to try to find engine dampers for a decent price and install at least one, possibly two. I want to keep the engine from moving as much as possible, as I have very low tolerance when it comes to room for engine roll. It has very old mounts at the moment, and I fear of damage when revving. Also, with the fuel lines in the current position, that could be a problem too, if the shifter area moves any. I may move those to the bottom of the transmission tunnel if I utterly have to. I'd much rather avoid it, but whatever works out...

That's about all I can think of. Quite a few things, but mostly small stuff. Pretty exciting... I can't wait to hear it start... and I really, really want it to spit flame. :)

I'd like to run off just headers, but with that small of an engine, I might cause damage... may need to install the exhaust, although I'd rather wait until later for that.

Once it runs, I'd like to go around the block a few times, have some fun, and once I get the dimensions for the nose cone, pull the engine out and strip it.

My objective for that is:

- Install turbo (Mitsubishi Super 16G) and all hardware. I'm new to this. This is going to take some studying (reading up already) and quite a bit of parts and re-location.

- Bore out cylinders .020 and replace rods, pistons, and rings accordingly. I am planning on lowering the compression to 8.0 or 8.5... I have to research a little more to figure which would be better for what I want... I'd like to run moderate boost.

- Valve job. Researching on the plusses and minuses of a big bore conversion. I'd like to get whatever I can out of the BP...

- New cams. Again, I have to study some more before I can really decide if I want to change the cam profile or not. ]

- New fuel rail, larger injectors, adjustable regulator. I've been eyeballing a dual-feed rail, which would then justify the others...

Right now all of that is still under research and contemplation, although the turbo should be here soon... That's a definate.

Oh well. I'm starting to lose focus on posting; I'm going to go to bed and I will try to get more done and take more pictures tomorrow after I get home from work.


Attachments:
File comment: Ok, that's not going to work. I returned these parts... not only did they take up way too much space, but it weighed in around 5 lbs.
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File comment: Well, at least this looks a little better. It does work better than the original--which opened right behind primary 2.
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File comment: Re-using original heater hosing for the moment. Some strain on the hose, as it is slightly twisted, but no crimping, so it should be ok for now.
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0513080551a.jpg [ 55.29 KiB | Viewed 4031 times ]
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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 5:25 am 
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Location: Champion, Ohio
More pictures...


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File comment: EGR and O2 bungs installed... part of the original metal heating tube visible, with bracket bolted to header.
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File comment: Getting there...
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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 9:04 am 
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Location: Massachusetts
I think you might want to look at making up a version of that plumbing tee that is brazed instead of soldered. They sell brazing rod for copper at Home Depot and it should make a *much* stronger joint. Solder is expected to be used where it wicks into a tight clearance joint, that provides a lot of bond area and the tight joint prevents or limits the loads on the solder.

Copper brazes well and it's fun to do. Brazing is required by plumbing codes in Germany.

This isn't a blocking item, go ahead and get it running, but try to make up that joint as a side project, in your copious spare time! I'm just afraid that joint will die, just about exactly when your relaxing and you think you've got a car - and also say at least 50 miles from home and you happen not to notice the temperature for a few minutes and you get a warped head....

I'm still getting ready to start my build, and it's a big help to see detailed logs like yours that really point to the scale of the project. Thanks.

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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 9:07 am 
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Looks good. Don't forget to hook up that engine ground strap. Also, if you would like it, I can drop a used O2 sensor in the mail to you. The 1.8 donor had one with it, but my 90 model electrics use the old 1 wire and it is a 4 wire. I don't even know if it works, but it's yours if you want it.

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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 1:01 pm 
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Horizenjob, I would like to eventually come up with something aluminum... I start taking Lincoln Electric's Basic Motorsport welding class July 28. It includes aluminum and cromoly, so that should help in that area. That joint also was pretty heavily soldered... I don't think it's going anywhere right now. I'd be more concerned about the hosing first.

About build details... At times it is really hard doing things yourself... I have no car experience, other than minor modifications here and there, so everything here is a learning experience... with a steep learning curve. However, if I had the funding, I could probably have another Seven in the same condition in a few months max. I already have ideas for three more cars... I think the biggest thing to know is that you ARE going to end up designing your own car. I followed the book frame up until the rear bulkhead... and after that everything has been on my own, either gathering ideas from looking at someone else's car, or just following what looks right, all with tight tolerence. If I had researched a lot before I started, I know it would be a lot different. I know for one, I would probably have a different donor car (BMW), have a longer frame (As usual, all the fun cars are meant for midgets), and would have pontoons (ala Donkervoort RS06). But go for it. Start gathering parts before you start--that'll be your biggest delay. If I had access to more parts, I'd be a hell of a lot further than I am now. Having Summit Racing about an hour from my house is some help, but still, I spend a lot more time waiting than working.

Chet, sure! It'd save the hassle in finding a new one for the moment... When it goes turbo, I'll probably delete the O2 sensor, as well as the EGR, depending on how easily modified the MegaSquirt is.


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PostPosted: May 14, 2008, 1:15 pm 
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PM me your snail mail addy and I'll get it out.

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PostPosted: May 19, 2008, 5:50 am 
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This weekend I feel I have accomplished at least something. I am almost ready to start... getting exciting!

Of the list I made the other post, I am down to just a few things left.

I bought caps for the vacuum hoses, and capped almost all of them off, except the EGR and IAC lines.

I found that you can weld stainless to mild steel, and it does work... it just isn't pretty.

I installed the intake system... just to find that the 100 dollar order I made wasn't exactly what I needed. I was unaware that the Miata MAF sensor is 2 3/4 only on one side--the other side is 2 1/2, as is the throttle body. I bought a silicone reducer to go from the throttle body to 2 3/4 stainless tubing, then a 2 3/4 silicone elbow, then some more tubing, a2 3/4 coupler from the tubing to the MAF sensor, another coupling from the MAF sensor to more tubing, and then finally the foam air filter.

Oh well. I found that I could probably just clamp a 2 1/2 elbow directly to the throttle body, if it weren't for the IAC (Idle air control valve, if I remember correctly) tube. That's what I did the welding for--I welded a piece of 3/4" mild steel to the 2 3/4 stainless tubing. I only have about 1 1/2" of tubing visible between the reducer and the elbow. The silicone elbows are a lot bigger than they sound, with something like a 4-6" radius, and several inches on either end. I might end up cutting some off to make it a little smaller.

I then go from the elbow directly to the MAF sensor, but as the elbow is 2 3/4" and the MAF is 2 1/2 on that side, I lubed up the thick rubber gasket that was on the MAF sensor and jammed it into the elbow, and clamped on top of that so I wouldn't have to bunch up the elbow. It'll hold for now, but I will have to figure out something else for the future. If I can get a small piece of 2 1/2 silicone, I should be able to use it for a liner on the 2 3/4 elbow. The coupler on the other side of the MAF sensor needed to be trimmed--as it is, the intake is sticking too far out. I am going to have to get another elbow, although this time it will be a stainless 45 degree elbow rather than a silicone elbow, bringing the intake in and down a bit to make room for the nose cone and hood. I currently have a 3-4" piece of stainless going from the coupler on the MAF to the intake, but you can't see it.

I also did an oil change, added a little lube to the differential, and filled the shifter box. I tried to make a gasket, but it oozed into the lube, which sucked, so I took it out and wiped it off. I'll get a real gasket for it, I guess. Also, I tightened down the side panel on the shifter box... and broke one of the bolts off. That really sucks... I think the gasket will hold it until I take the engine out next time, but it might be a real pain to extract the broken threads.

For some reason, the shifter isn't shifting as well... I am afraid I might have damaged it when trying to remove that shifter box :\ I'll have to see how it does when I start it up. I think part of it is the fact that the drive shaft is now in place--I notice when I shift, it moves a little bit. Up until now it has been out of the car when I mess with the shifter. Currently, the shifter is bolted in place without a gasket. It should do until I get one, and I know I'll have to take it out several times in the near future, so screw it. It won't be going upside down any time soon, so I should be ok.

I measured and drilled holes to bolt the firewall to the scuttle. I also cut a rectangle out of the bottom part of the firewall to fit the fuse box in and bolt down. I will be mounting the ECU somewhere along there, as well as the coolant reservoir. Up until now I have not been able to find a good, square/rectangle reservoir--at Summit, all they had were catch tanks, which look like a jelly bean, or the really flimsy tanks at AutoZone, which are about as durable as a McDonalds paper cup. I need something sturdy as the stock tank, but not curved for a wheel well, as I don't have any.

The biggest chore of the weekend was shortening the tie rod adaptors. I had Jack make them oversized, and shortened them slightly when I got them, but they were still causing some considerable toe-out. In spite of having the adaptors screwed all the way on, I still had to shorten them. I shortened both the male Miata-tie-rod-end end of the adaptor about 1/2 inch and the female MGB-tie-rod end of the adaptor about 1/2 an inch as well. Now that they are screwed all the way in, they have slight toe in. I'll bring them out to perfect alignment once I get a chance to fab up some sort of alignment tool.

I also tightened down all suspension bolts. I am going to go over the whole car again, checking each nut and bolt, but as far as I know, everything is tightened down good and tight. I have to replace one of the transmission mount bolts, but it is not extremely vital, as the other is still in place. However, I'd like to have a new one before I drive it.

Once I have it up and running, have all the brackets for the skin in place, and send the frame out for painting, I am going to gather all the nuts and bolts, and after labeling them all, I am going to have them all replaced--any non-essential non-metric bolt replaced with the closest metric equivilent, everything 10.9, all nuts will be nylocks, and I would like to see how many bolts I will be able to get with safety wire holes.

Well, I think that's about all for now. I'm about to crash, and I will try to finish up my list in the next few days so it can start up next weekend. I was hoping for this weekend, but as my dad is out of town, I'd really like to have a second person around when I start it up, as well as I need help bleeding the brakes and clutch. I filled the clutch master cylinder, just to notice that I'm not going to be able to bleed it while pumping the pedal...

I still have to strap down the battery and fuel cell, bleed brakes and clutch, mount driver's seat (I think I'll run with one seat at first and keep the electrical lines in the passenger's seat for easy access), mount steering, mount pillow block for steering reinforcement, mount 5-point harness, mount electrical harness, install coolant reservoir, fill engine/reservior, and mount exhaust gasket. I still have to figure out how I am going to start the car for now (switches), but that's for another day.


Attachments:
File comment: Shaped the scuttle to refrain from removing my kneecaps every time I get in.
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File comment: Firewall bolted to the scuttle. I didn't take a picture, but there is a square cut in it to hold the fuse box. It needs a little more work.
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File comment: About 1" shorter adaptors
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PostPosted: May 19, 2008, 5:51 am 
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PostPosted: May 19, 2008, 9:05 am 
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Sounds like you had a great weekend, Nate! Keep up the good work!

I wouldn't worry too much about the shifting. Once it's turning, I think it will shift a lot easier.

-dave

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PostPosted: May 27, 2008, 3:41 am 
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It lives!

Tonight, I turned over the Seven GTR for the first time, and it started on the first try.

However, it is not running correctly. Some assembly required.

Well, it has been a long weekend. Being a three-day weekend, I had it all planned out--Saturday afternoon/evening and part of Sunday, I planned on working on my buddy's car. He has a 1987 Mulletmobile... er... Firebird... which I have mentioned a few times before, and it desperately needs more HP. He bought some Flowtech (if I remember correctly) headers, and I offered to build a set of cross-over straight pipes.

Well, things didn't exactly work out as planned. Unlike the Seven, changing headers on the Firebird was a complete nightmare, and the new headers took Saturday night and most of Sunday to get on. It would have probably have been easier to just pull the engine to do it, looking in retrospect. Once we finished the headers and got ready for him to leave, it sprung an oil leak, and as everyone closes early on Sunday nights, we had to wait until today to fix it. That took up not half of Sunday, but around half of today, which were expected to spend working on the Seven so I would be able to start it and drive it around a bit.

Well, eventually everything got straightened out and we got back to my house after dropping the Firebird off as Dave's, and we started working on the Seven.

Most of the work today was rushed, and a lot of the stuff is temporary and/or jury rigged. The fuel cell is not strapped down yet, the battery box is not made yet, and most of the wiring is not where it will be when it is road ready, but as it is going to have to be stripped to paint once all the mounts for the Dzus fasteners are mounted, I am not going to do any permanent mounting just yet.

I started out by plugging in all the wiring. Everything went where it belonged without any "where does this go" questions, except one connector by the right fuse box, but I think it was for a ground next to the box in the original Miata.

We then started pumping the clutch, to no avail. I did not have any clear tubing to bleed with, so we went to AutoZone and picked up a hand vacuum pump. I was not aware that you are supposed to pump a new master cylinder before the lines, and it took a while to get that to work out, but once we pumped the master cylinder and cleaned out the bleeder bolt, things started going a little faster, but it still took quite a while to bleed the clutch and two brake cylinders. Even with three people, it was still a tedious chore. One had to pump the vacuum pump and keep emptying the catch can, while a second had to sit in the car and pump the pedal, and the third had to keep an eye on the cylinder level and continuously pour fluid into the reservoir. None the less, it eventually got done, and the brakes and clutch are fully bled, and actually feel like a clutch and brakes. The brakes are HARD, but they should do ok.

By the time we finished the brakes, it was starting to get dark, but we only had a little bit of wiring to go. Dave started working on the fuel pump line, as we had to run the original line from the Miata harness to the Walbro 255 pump, and he split the harness by the battery so I would be able to bolt the ground that is about 2" from the negative terminal. My dad installed the two switches we were going to use, as the donor Miata had no key start when I got it. We didn't need an auxiliary, so we just have run on/off and start on/off. Meanwhile, I found places to bolt all the ground wires, zip-tied loose wires out of the way, and extended the MAF sensor wires.

I filled the radiator and reservoir (I skipped mounting the fan for the moment, as I have to make adaptors to get it to fit, and I would not have the car running long enough to need the fan), poured a few gallons into to the tank, and looked over things a few last times.

At this point, my dad had me sit in the car, while he and dave pushed me across the driveway as hard as they could for a brake check. I stomped on the brakes, which had very little travel, maybe only an inch or so before they got very hard, and the car stopped there. They then pushed and pulled while I was in neutral, tried while I was in first, and then pushed me back to the starting point while in first with the clutch down.

All systems go, so far.

Finally, with my dad wielding a fire extinguisher, like the robot in Iron Man, I sat down in the car and flipped the run switch. I saw several lights on the Miata instrument panel light up, and heard a few clicks up front. Everything seemed good, so I flipped the start switch.

The engine cought and barked to life. I let go of the gas, and it died. I started it again and started pumping the gas, but then let go and it died.

The engine was running, but sounded as if it was running only 2 or 3 cylinders, and was shaking pretty good. It will not run at all at idle; if I do not constantly pump the gas, it will not run at all.

As it was 11, and I am running bare header, it probably was not the best time to start testing the engine a lot, so I really did not get to do much testing. I changed the spark plugs; I had some iridium IK-22 (I think, either that or 20, slightly colder than the Miata should normally have) spark plugs in there, but changed back to the well-used stock plugs that were on the donor. All plugs looked clean when pulled, so that was a relief.

I then started it for one last time, and when I started it, and started pumping, it definately sounded better, with all four cylinders definately firing all the time, but still no idle.

However, it did spit flame. I always wanted a car that could spit flame, and this did it... at low RPM. I cannot wait to see how it reacts when running right at full throttle.

I am not quite sure what the problem is with the idle. I don't think the IAC should have anything to do with it--I had to make a new plug for it in the new intake, and the line from the plug to under the throttle body is shorter, but that shouldn't be it. One probable culprit is the fact that the O2 sensor is about 2" from the open end of the header. I have a hunch it might be reading the cool air outside the exhaust and giving bad readings. I really am not sure.

My dad and I am going to have to try to get the diagnostics to work right and get the flash codes from the ECU on the instrument panel to see if it tells me what sensor is malfunctioning. I also plan on temporarily mounting a cheap muffler (not a glasspack) onto the exhaust, which should solve two problems--keep the O2 sensor happy, and keep the neighbors happy at 1AM when I'm testing the engine.

I did not get any movies of the startup, but I will get some once the car starts running correctly, unless I am unable to get there, then I'll just show what's wrong, and buy a MegaSquirt.

Well, I am tired. Although I did not get to drive the car, I am definately happy. The Seven GTR lives, and it is only a matter of time before I will be able to get some handling setup worked out, install the turbo, and drive it.


Attachments:
File comment: The Seven GTR after it's first time running. Not much different in appearance, but there soon will be.
0526082331.jpg
0526082331.jpg [ 70.45 KiB | Viewed 3737 times ]
File comment: This is what happens when a cutoff wheel gets stuck in old exhaust--the grinder kicks back.
0524082017.jpg
0524082017.jpg [ 27.13 KiB | Viewed 3732 times ]
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PostPosted: May 27, 2008, 9:26 am 
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Location: Lexington, KY
SteyrTMP wrote:
It lives!


WOO - HOO!!!

Quote:
This is what happens when a cutoff wheel gets stuck in old exhaust--the grinder kicks back.


Oh, dude...That is one NASTY lookin' gash! I guess it could have been worse, though...

-dave "maybe I'll go put the safety guard back on my grinders" hempy

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PostPosted: May 27, 2008, 10:39 am 
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Congrats! :headbang: It feels good to hear some noise come out of it doesn't it?

Just a few tidbits I have come across dealing with my engine woes.

I was told that the O2 sensor is not looked at by the ECU until the car warms up. So that won't effect your idle.

It sounds to me like it might be a vacuum leak. When my 1.8 wouldn't idle I discovered that air was leaking in around my old and rock hard (supposed to be cushy and soft) injector isolators. Obviously double check all the hose ports on the manifold to make sure nothing is unplugged or left open.

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