Week 28: June 24th 2001:

I Don’t know what is wrong with the clutch, I filled it back up with fluid, bled the system and it works again.  But, it’s still leaking somewhere but I don’t see any drips on the floor.  Perhaps only during operation?  I completely rebuilt the front end during the week.  I torqued up the caliper & hub bolts which somehow worked there way loose.  Front end works again!  I drove over to Poulsbo this weekend to visit a friend (who actually was the previous owner of the car).  He took the following pictures for himself but I’m putting them up here so you guys can see them.  This car loves the freeway, around town, because of the heavy cam, the idle is very rough but over 2000rpms, look out!

Week 29: July 22nd 2001:

Driving the car in the city and using it to drive back and forth from work was just not going to work with the cam that was installed in the engine.  After going through all the literature that came with the motor as well as a few phone calls with Ted, we determined that the cam installed was an Isky 270 performance cam.  It’s just too lopey for this 3.5l motor.  Ted also thought that the engine had a 264 cam installed so we were both kind of perplexed on the issue.  The only solution was to replace the cam with something that would make city driving a lot more manageable which would perhaps remove some top end power but make it more useful for daily driving.  I went through all the specs for the Isky cams and decided to use an Isky 256 Performance Cam.  The website (for Isky cams) specifies that this cam gives the best fuel economy & can be used with existing computer management / fuel injection computers.  A phone call with Woody also confirmed this so I struck a deal with Ted and got an Isky 256 drop shipped to me.  Although I was to busy with actually changing out the cam to take a bunch of photos, I’ve included a couple here which show the timing chain and the top of the motor w/ the intake off.  The difference in performance between what the engine was and what it is now is night and day.  The idle is exceptionally smooth, the torque that the car now delivers is unbelievable and any concerns that I had about loosing top end acceleration and performance have gone through the window.  This car just laughs at me.  Vroom Vroom!

Week 27: June 17th 2001:

Crap, well if it isn’t one thing, it’s another.  Gene Thompson was over at the shop this afternoon and we went through the injection system to try and get the mixture right.  We went through the system, Gene hooked up his oscilloscope and things looked good.  The plugs were pretty fowled up and I pulled out the Bosch platinum plugs and replaced them with standard champion plugs.  The car ran much better but still very rich. We leaned the system out and *think* we got the mixture correct.  Then, the car started backfiring.  We never did figure that out, I sent an email off to Ted @ TSI (where I bought the engine from) for some advise.  Next problem, the hydraulic fluid in the clutch leaked out.  Don’t ask me how, I have no idea.  Needless to say that I drove from Bellevue back to the shop power shifting (that sucked).  Front brakes are now screwed as well.  Wicked shimmy and grating.  Will nothing ever work?  Add to that, the fact that the alternator, the wimpy 27amp POS that it is can’t handle the load and I can’t find a 66Amp unit anywhere for a reasonable amount of money.  While changing out the spark plugs, #1 and #3 cylinders have some oil splattering, I wonder where that is from?

Oil splattering:

Parked after my power shifting 20 miles..  At least it looks good:

Week 26: June 10th 2001:

Ok, The rear suspension is sitting an inch to low.  I thought it might be the springs that I got from S&S prep so I installed uprated stock height springs from British Parts Northwest.  Still, the car sat an inch to low in the rear.  I swear it’s something to do with the ford rear end and the fact that the rear geometry has changed a little bit but Woody swears that it shouldn’t have.  Oh well.  To get to the correct ride height, my friend Mike machined for me two aluminum spacers.  These spacers slide over the spring mounts on the trailing arms and then the springs sit on these spacers.  I installed these this weekend and the rear end looks a lot better now.  The handbrake had worked its way loose, I’ve re-adjusted it and put in a lock washer, we’ll see if that makes a difference.  I’ve now isolated the front knocking sound to the front right brake pads moving about in the caliper, I’ve adjusted that and the noise has gone.  Several more issues to fix include dealing with the gas leak, I’ve ordered a newer filter to go inline between the tank and the pump.  This might deal with the issue.  That’ll go in on Monday.  The last issues are engine mixture (need to go to a shop) and figure out a nice hose to go between the AFM the intake plenum.  I plan on going to NAPA and look to see if I can find a radiator hose that has the correct angle molded into it.  Included this week are some of the suspension shots (before and after).  If I get the fuel issue dealt with this week, I’ll go to NAPA, get a hose, and adjust the mixture.  I’m debating on whether or not to go to Victoria BC this weekend for the car show.  It’s a trip though.

Shot of the rear suspension, look how low the car sits, these are low profile tires and they are almost up in the wheel well!

Jack up the rear end:

Remove the spring, install the aluminum spacer and replace the spring:

Back on the tires, the ride height is increased by about 1″

Another look from the other side, you can see how much better the car sits:

Week 25: May 27th 2001:

The car show up in Vancouver, BC last week turned out to be a lot of fun.  I took Carl McIver up with me and we had a hell of a great time.  I didn’t (doh) take my camera up with me so I don’t have any pics..  ARGH!.  There are still a few bugs to work out.  The alternator sucks, I need to get one that outputs more than 27amps.  The spoiler is not yet fully attached (makes a noise).  The mohair convertible top and boot have yet to be installed but I’m using the old vinyl top for now.  The mixture is still screwed, It’s something that I will get to deal with once I have access to an exhaust sniffer.

Week 24: May 13th 2001:

Man, the car show up in Vancouver, BC is this coming Saturday, so, I’m pushing it.  The radio is now in, the battery has been secured, all the trim in the trunk has been installed and the interior is almost complete.  There are a few little odds and ends needed to be done (rear view mirror, some glass channel felt etc..
In the engine compartment, I have to finish aligning the hood, and I have got to get the mixture and timing right, it’s still not there.   I have an appointment to have the convertible top installed on Tuesday / Wednesday (he is squeezing me in so it might take a couple of days)

The car was just to darn loud!  So, I had the exhaust shop weld in some intermediate mufflers:

Headers re-worked to clear the supra transmission:

Complete underbody shot showing complete exhaust:

Shot of the trunk.  The WA license plate, I installed over the UK one.  You can see the two 10″ kickers I’ve got in the back.  I’m going to want to hear the music in this car.

AFM Mounting Bracket:

Hood prop is now installed on the opposite side:

Passenger side door & seat (notice the later style lock knobs have been installed):

Drivers side:

Center console w/ radio, switches, etc..

Week 23: May 6th 2001:

1)   The lumination module in the distributor ended up being bad.  So, I replaced the entire ignition system with a Mallory Vacuum advance distributor, coil, and ballast resistor.  This gave me spark but the system still did not run.  

2)  No Fuel!  It ended up being user error and I stupidly put the fuel hose into the return connector and visa versa.  Reverse these two hoses and fuel flowed!  

3)  My next problem came about when the car didn’t start.  Carl McIver had come down to help me today and I’m glad he did.  We determined that the distributor was in 180 degrees off (again, my fault.. Doh!)  We repositioned the distributor and the car fired right up!  BIG plume of blue smoke out the back end!  

We had good oil pressure, and after running for about 30 minutes, the engine had smoothed out considerably.  The car backfires pretty badly when below 1000 rpms, I’m going to have to spend some time and figure that one out.  But hey, huge milestone accomplished this weekend!  I spent Sunday putting in a bunch of the interior, it’s really starting to look like a car now!

Back from the body shop with the hood installed:

Side shot of engine:

You can see in this shot the Mallory distributor (and coil):

Starting to install the carpet.

Rear parcel shelf going in:

Center carpet:

Rear cockpit panel and passenger seat:

Drivers seat and TR8 steering wheel:

Engine with AFM resting on strut tower, I have not yet made the bracket for this.  I also need to make a hood prop, I’ve just got wood holding things up right now:

Week 21: April 16th 2001:

I finished hooking up the engine wiring harness & transmission harness.  Reverse lights work!  I have 12v to the coil, starter etc… things are looking good.  I have put on the air hoses as well  as plumbed most of the smaller radiator hoses.  I’m waiting on the heater hoses from Rimmerbros.  I’ve made a bracket to install the AFM  (garbage thing but gives me the dimensions).  I’ll make a proper version during the week.  The throttle cable is in, the transmission cover plate has been made and installed.  I got the car back from the exhaust shop, the RH header is installed and looks GREAT.  They told me that I need to get the LH header modified and they showed me, It doesn’t run parallel to the car and once they fitted the exhaust, the pipe hit the transmission cross member.  I’ll get them to fix that once the car is running.  I got oil in the engine, I ran the oil pump to lube the system as well as check the oil pressure.  I’ve also now got the distributor installed and lightly bolted down.

Distributor installed:

Air hoses getting installed:

Throttle cable:

Transmission cover plate:  This was a custom job, the transmission came out in a different place.

Week 20: April 8th 2001:

Lots of little things needed to be done:
Installed the handbrake
bled the brakes
Installed ECU
Did a lot of other misc odds and ends

Brake master cylinder (w/ fluid):

Better shot of fresh air plenum:

Nice (In my opinion) front profile view:

Trunk w/ carpet now installed:

ECU Installed:

My dashpod w/ a TR8 Tach installed, this gives me the correct redline:

Loading the car up on the trailer for the short trip to the Exhaust shop (to get the exhaust properly fitted and RH header fixed):