The $1500, running, driving, turbo Miata. Boosting like itís 1996! - Miata Turbo Forum - Boost cars, acquire cats.

Welcome to Miataturbo.net   Members
 


Build Threads Building a motor? Post the progress here.

Reply
 
 
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12-16-2015, 07:59 PM   #1
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default The $1500, running, driving, turbo Miata. Boosting like itís 1996!

This will chronicle our ongoing adventures with Ratchet Morgan Shitkicker III. A wonderful little 1991 SNC Miata that my friend picked up for $1500 after declaring he “wanted to buy a turbo Miata”. The world decided this was meant to be and one popped up locally for $1500 the next day, causing a mad dash to get the money together and go look at it.

What I was expecting to find was something that was almost ready for the death bed, with rust holes and oil burning and the works. What we found was something completely surprising, a running, driving, halfway thought out turbo Miata that my friend drove almost all the way home (60 miles) the same night it was bought. The only reason it didn’t make it was a stretched out alternator belt slipping too much to keep the battery charged.
So without further blathering on, here is the little shitkicker himself, along with his band mate's cars. Slight size difference!





The next section will be in the form of an interview..

Is that truck bedliner!?!

Yes, yes it is.

Why!?!

The previous owner decided that $150 worth of roll on bed liner was better than going to MACCO. It is actually kind of fun since it can’t be keyed and you can draw on it with chalk! This is what happens when you let the people at the Miata meet have at it (Surprisingly few dicks actually, but it was a family event...)





(My friend heard the rims were nicknamed "daisies" and went to town )

Is there rust?

Some! Not much though, a little surface rust on the control arms, some water pooling rust in the trunk (the roof was FUBAR), and a bit where the seam sealer has lifted over the years. It was a Delaware and then a Florida car, so for the salt belt, it is what would be sold as “rust free”.

Any fun mods done to the car?

Well, the owner in Florida was a cop, so it has red reflective stickers everywhere. He also had a viper alarm put in… and an after-market cruise control… and extra lighting under the hood, and maybe in the trunk… and there is a lamp switch behind the one seatbelt tower… No, we have no idea what it does. There is just a ton of extra wiring in this car that will need to come out. *shudders thinking about it*. So umm… the actual answer is, other than the turbo and a head unit, it was bone stock. Factory shocks, 10 year old all seasons and everything. Fairly sure the radiator and coolant hoses are factory original too.
The PO also removed the AC, power steering and bypassed the heater core.

(Bypassed heatercore....)


(How the PO dealt with the ISVC...)


(Wires, wires wires...)


Oh... well then… How about the turbo system then?

The turbo system is fairly basic. Ebay t3 flange turbo, water cooled though! It has a stainless steel ebay manifold and a custom made turbo back using lovely crush bent tubing and no flex pipe! Muffler is solidly attached to the engine...



You know the ebay mani is going to crack right?

Yup. We will address that when the time comes.

Well, what about supporting modifications for the turbo? ECU? Clutch? Dif?

Oh boy… Well, at least the previous owner though some about what to do for fuel. It has a VooDoo box in it! Could be worse, could be better. And he mercifully installed an Inovate LC-2 with DB gauge, so we have some idea of the AFR! (though it needed calibration when the car was bought, it insisted it was running at 22.4afr out of boost and 7.5 in boost, and nothing in between).He also added an MSD for timing! Clutch… factory, diff? Factory. Fuel injectors are the stock 1.6 ones. The previous owner was attempting to run 10PSI on them…

10!?! Didn’t that break something?!?

Yes, 10, and no! Suprisingly! It seems the PO only put about 800 miles on the car in the 3 years he owned it and installed the turbo system! So no damage done!

Well… How is the motor health? Did you do a compression check?
Motor runs very well! No compression check yet, we are kind of afraid of what it may tell us…

Well? Let’s see the engine bay!



Umm… there is oil everywhere?

Yup, there is a slight leak…



With that little fun done, a bit more about the car. We had the waste gate wired open to keep it from building too much boost. It was making about 2-3pst from 4500-5500 and then ramping up to 5-6pst at red line. AFRs are high 17’s at idle, low 16’s in light cruise, low 15’s in heavier cruise, 13.8 at WOT outside of boost and high 12’s ramping down to mid 10’s by redline once in boost.
We moved the wastegate actuator reference back to the compressor outlet (it was reading on the little port just after the throttle body) to induce intentional boost sag at redline to deal with only having 1.6 injectors. We have some 1.8 tan tops that will be going in over winter for now.
Other winter projects involve:
1. Ripping out all the wiring and doing it nicely. Scotch clips should be illegal.
2. Rebuilding the exhaust. There is no flex pipe, it is done with crush bent tubing and the O2 sensor is only 6” from the turbo outlet…
3. Deal with all the leaks.
After that, we are going to run it on the piggy backs for a while and get everything sorted mechanically. It will likely need a new clutch sooner than later, so that and a torsen is in the books. After that it needs suspension. If we can do 160hp with the current setup and 1.8 injectors that would be good, 180 would be amazing.

Future plans are to build a weld-el based manifold and install a Niasan Juke turbo that my friend picked up NIB for $100. It is a Mitsubishi TF035 which has a compressor map that looks perfect for the little 1.6L and about 180-200hp.





My knowledge about turbo systems comes from a ton of reading here and some books. So I have zero practical knowledge, I am asking that if you see us doing anything really stupid, please let us know!

The goal for this car in the near future is to get it to the point where it won't break itself during autocross next year. My friend also wants to try his hand at drifting (in for broken diffs), I will do my best to try to keep him from breaking it.
Attached Thumbnails
-bli8veu.jpg   -psrp8sh.jpg   -75bwfx9.jpg   -e6wzju0.jpg   -domqcpb.jpg  

-qi3kasp.jpg   -aj5mjjp.jpg   -bgvmep9.jpg   -hdd58zy.jpg   -06bbuha.jpg  

-aizpgto.jpg  

Last edited by x_25; 12-16-2015 at 08:12 PM.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2015, 08:27 PM   #2
Crumple Zone Tester
iTrader: (7)
 
mgeoffriau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Jackson, MS
Posts: 7,602
Total Cats: 432
Default

Fun. I bought a basketcase (admittedly for quite a bit more than $1500) and got tired of chasing down problems. I traded it off and was happy to be rid of it. Hope you have better luck.
mgeoffriau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2015, 09:03 PM   #3
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
Fun. I bought a basketcase (admittedly for quite a bit more than $1500) and got tired of chasing down problems. I traded it off and was happy to be rid of it. Hope you have better luck.
It has actually turned out to be far less of a basketcase than I feared it would. I was expecting it to within a few hundred miles. Turns out, electrically at least, it is less crazy than his 250k mile '98 Buick Regal LS.

I have also forced my friend to read Street Turbocharging by Mark Warner, so he has some idea how all this stuff works now. I don't get the deer in the headlights look when I explain things anymore.

So, updates to where we are now (I typed this up a while ago, had to wait for pictures to get taken, and then finals hit!).

We ran for a while with the waste gate tied open to make sure nothing crazy was going to happen and figure out how to work the wideband that was in there. After a while of checking everything out, we hooked the waste gate back up and it is running happily at 5ish PSI. Spool is terrible since the WGA hardly even holds it closed, but with 1.6 injectors and a voodoo, I am abrade to run much more without increased fuel pressure or something.

The roof was replaced over memorial day weekend, what a PITA that was, but it looks good (the roof it came with, the back window had torn out, so that was priority #1).

My friend got laid off 3 weeks after getting this car, so we have been working on it lemons style. It needed new window guides something bad (windows weren't sealing against the top), so we made some (my dad has a garage full of shop tools!).







The clutch is slipping something bad now, so new clutch needs to happen sooner, rather than later.

New suspension happened already, managed to get 80k mile front shocks and springs off a friend's 93, and 40k mile rears for the cost of shipping, total outlay was $35 and the car doesn't try to kill you over every bump now.

Other than drinking oil and having terrible idle (need to get the ISCV hooked back up!), the car was dead nuts reliable for the last 3k miles. Until November 13th (a Friday) when I told my friend he should go through the records he has and see if the timing belt was ever done.

That evening, I got a call that the car had just died on the highway... You get one guess what the reason was. Thankfully, they were only a few miles from a friends house. So the next evening, in the dark and cold...











Turns out a stock timing belt can last 123,094mi (for those keeping score, the car was bought with 119,600mi, and other than the slipping alternator belt and some loose header nuts this was it's only failure! not bad for $1500).

Also, neat fact about the SNC, you can change the timing belt without taking the crank nose bolt off. Good thing I had one in my stash, my friend owes me a belt now (doing mine this winter).

As far as I can tell, the leaks are coming from the, valve cover, cam seals, CAS o-ring and the turbo drain line made from two pieces of cooling hose spliced together (on the list to fix). Haven't found any cracks in the block or anything yet!

So the car also came on Falken Azin 912k (or whatever the 14" all season was the m.net boner back in the mid 2000's) date coded 03/05.... They were wearing fast and sucked in the rain. My friend managed to score a set of four, 15" stock Holies from a Mini with 205/50 DZ101's in the front and 205/60 Dunlop somethings in the back, date coded from 07 and 08! For $120, no a deal he could pass up, other than a bit of plastydip overspray (will be dealt with) they are in nice shape and only weigh 12lbs.

So, with 94+ shocks in the rear and 93's in the front, and 60 profile tires...



And that is how the car sits today, we will hopefully be doing an alignment this weekend so it stops causing so much toe wear.
Attached Thumbnails
-lbydppg.jpg   -wd0pxny.jpg   -7mt1g55.jpg   -iag87gx.jpg   -epmqqwm.jpg  

-fax1lkn.jpg   -jyykhwd.jpg   -kpqxxzl.jpg   -lrhjnfy.jpg  

Last edited by x_25; 12-16-2015 at 10:19 PM.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2015, 11:46 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Mitchygan
Posts: 105
Total Cats: 9
Default

Man, now I feel like an idiot for changing my timing belt 50k early!


Looking forward to seeing what you guys do with an almost basket case car!
OptionXIII is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 12:07 AM   #5
Free Moustache Rides
iTrader: (8)
 
matthewdesigns's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 1,656
Total Cats: 47
Default

My god that is a spectacular amount of oil leakage.
matthewdesigns is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 01:45 AM   #6
Slowest Progress Ever
iTrader: (26)
 
thirdgen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: The coal ridden hills of Pennsylvania
Posts: 5,638
Total Cats: 145
Default

My first miata had like 238,000 on it or close before it blew the timing belt. My current miata has 164,000 on it, I owned it since 103,000, and never changed the belt. Doubt the previous owner did either, cause I have all the records. No interference, no care.
thirdgen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 08:22 AM   #7
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewdesigns View Post
My god that is a spectacular amount of oil leakage.
Isn't it though? There are 10-15 drips after the car has sat for 5 minutes. It really marks it's spot. We didn't put the timing covers back on since we want to do water pump and all the things behind the belt soon anyway, so you can see oil running down from the cam seals as the engine is running. They are truely toast.

The guy selling it to us said it "has a small leak from the turbo drain, just needs the hose clamp tightened". Riiiiight....

Quote:
Originally Posted by thirdgen View Post
My first miata had like 238,000 on it or close before it blew the timing belt. My current miata has 164,000 on it, I owned it since 103,000, and never changed the belt. Doubt the previous owner did either, cause I have all the records. No interference, no care.
That is a lot of miles on a belt! But yeah, non interference, so other than being annoyed and needing a tow, it is not a big deal.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 08:59 AM   #8
Ich verstehe nur Bahnhof
iTrader: (3)
 
psyber_0ptix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 3,237
Total Cats: 252
Default

That turnbuckle is the most confusing thing I've ever seen. It's so janky I love it. Looks like you got a bit of time to invest in it, but it looks like it could be fun if you have friends and your pops shop tools to use.
psyber_0ptix is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 09:05 AM   #9
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by psyber_0ptix View Post
That turnbuckle is the most confusing thing I've ever seen. It's so janky I love it. Looks like you got a bit of time to invest in it, but it looks like it could be fun if you have friends and your pops shop tools to use.
I am actually the friend helping with the car. Been teaching the owner how to wrench for a little bit now and he co-drives my Miata for autocross. He has been wanting his own since I let him drive mine.

The shop tools are wonderful, I have everything I could need on hand for 98% of working on a car. Just need to finish learning to use it all (need to learn welding, my own car has some rust holes starting to show up...)

The turn buckle is held by a valve cover bolt and one of the downpipe bolts. It did not last long at all, props (cats now I suppose?) to the previous owner for trying at least. I am still amazed we have had to do almost nothing for 4k miles now, as far as the turbo stuff is concerned. I was serjously expecting something to have gone wrong by now.

Thsi car is just the perfect amount of jank, everyone loves it. Eventual plan is to try to keep the character of it, but get it in tip top shape mechanically.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 09:13 AM   #10
Ich verstehe nur Bahnhof
iTrader: (3)
 
psyber_0ptix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 3,237
Total Cats: 252
Default

I'm sure a simple heim joint and threaded rod (think ultra long endlink) would be great for that application since it allows enough articulation to not bind but still hold tension.

Can I drive up to use the tools? There are so many mounts and brackets I want to make and using tax dollars for personal projects in the machine shop is generally frowned upon at my work.

Also poscat for helping a buddy learn to wrench. That's awesome. World needs more people like you.
psyber_0ptix is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2015, 09:17 AM   #11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by psyber_0ptix View Post
I'm sure a simple heim joint and threaded rod (think ultra long endlink) would be great for that application since it allows enough articulation to not bind but still hold tension.

Can I drive up to use the tools? There are so many mounts and brackets I want to make and using tax dollars for personal projects in the machine shop is generally frowned upon at my work.
Yeah, we will figure something out. I have some leftover parts from my DIY zway bar endlinks, but I don't know if 3/8"-24 rod will put up with the vibration. Also not sure of trying to hold the turbo up that well will help the manifold or make things worse.

I would invite you up if it were my house and my tools. I still have a lot to learn about operating them. They are just small chinese ones though, google mini lathe and mini mill. Various places they can be had for $300-400, and with a bit of clean up, they are decently useable machine tools, just don't plan on making anything too big.

Yeah, my friend is picking it up quick though, not many people just get how to use tools like he does.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2015, 01:39 AM   #12
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

So finally got ratchet to my garage for an alignment. Used the string method, we ended up doing 1.25* front camber, max caster (still not sure how to measure exactly, I just made sure the wheels had the same camber gain), 1-7/8* rear camber and zero toe all around. It drives much, much better than it did before.

My little alignment jig setup.





And did someone say oil leak? My friend has gotten a new job, so hopefully, in a couple week, he will have the money to start fixing all these leaks and the cooling system.

Also, there is a nut welded to the exhaust? No idea why. And note the fun lack of a flex pipe anywhere.




SO I finally got to drive the car with the waste gate closed. What my friend thought might be clutch slip (a studdering/slipping with the tach moving different than the spedo) is, as far as I can tell, spark "blow out". Popping, decrease in power, AFR going richer, any time north of 4-5 PSI (it is building up to 7ish) with heavy throttle. Sound like spark blow out?

We gaped three of the plugs down to 0.030" and that seems to have helped some. Plug #4 just refuses to come out though, engine cold, engine hot, doesn't matter, we cannot get it to break free. Any suggestions on that? I will tell my friend to start trying some p-blaster on it since that worked for mine.

Anyway, I haven't done much reading on blow out since I wasn't expecting it to be an issue until well north of 10psi. Apparently the coils on the 1.6 are weaker than I thought. What can we do, besides gapping the plugs way down, to help? New plugs are on the list, gap them to 0.025 maybe? Going to go with NGK BKR7E-11 for now.
Attached Thumbnails
-xzngvbq.jpg   -cjuz0ae.jpg   -xsn8tgc.jpg  
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-2015, 08:47 PM   #13
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

My friend got some money from tips and finally got to do new plugs and an oil change.

New plugs gaped to 0.030" solved the misfires.

Oil had sparkles in it. I am hoping they are from when the previous owner drilled the oil drain return. I told my friend to pull a sample and send it to blackstone after 1k miles or so. We will see what comes of it.

Worst case, 1.6's are cheap.
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2016, 11:03 PM   #14
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quick update. My friend finally got the parts and money to do the full timing belt change (seals, gaskets, water pump, idlers and other things up there) so he started on that today. Asked for a picture of the crank nose and key...







Whelp, new key, crank-bolt, some 660 and some 243 it is then! And then run it till it pops.

Anyway, while my friend had no money, he found some fabric he had laying around and decided he needed new door cards...




And a used ebay aluminum radiator. Though, and I take full responsibility for this, it is for an NB. Woops. We needed to come up with a new mounting solution for the intercooler anyway, will just make a combined mount.

Attached Thumbnails
-a2gizzw.jpg   -iijp8jk.jpg   -pxhxwha.jpg   -3k9fvyt.jpg  
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-28-2016, 04:49 PM   #15
Boosting since 1984
iTrader: (1)
 
stefanst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Levittown
Posts: 1,112
Total Cats: 57
Default

I trade you a used Ebay aluminum NA radiator for your NB radiator!
(Located in general Princeton area)
stefanst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-28-2016, 05:46 PM   #16
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by stefanst View Post
I trade you a used Ebay aluminum NA radiator for your NB radiator!
(Located in general Princeton area)
My friend is up closer to NYC, but I will let him know!
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2016, 12:48 AM   #17
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

My friend has spent the last week tearing everything down and cleaning. I dropped by to help him remove some stubborn cam seals, explain the coolant rerout we planed out, and then help with the short nose crank fix.

I threw together a quick cam seal install tool out of some 1.5" PVC pipe and a coupler. Just banged the pipe in, cut it off and then faced it on the lathe. Turning is so much fun.







Current state of the engine bay. And yes, this is cleaner, you should have seen it before.



Contrary to popular belief, climbing into the engine bay is actually an option on a Miata.



The cam seal after 3 days of my friend trying every tool he has to try to get it out. This thing was in there very, very well.



Five minutes later with my new tool. It's a Lisle 58430 and costs $16. I highly recommend it, it works exactly as advertised.




We then put the new crank nose parts back on. A bit of filing to remove burs and the new key, bolt, and sprocket went on with loctite 660 and loctite 243 in all the right places. Hopefully it will hold.

My friend is now halfway through the 1.6 spacer-less rerout. We are moving the temp sensor to the front in the block off plate, removing the waterneck and leaving the fan thermoswitch in the back. There will be a total of 5 hoses in the system. Two for the lower radiator, one upper radiator hose, a turbo feed line, and a turbo drain line. The simpler, the better.
Attached Thumbnails
-t4ndxzq.jpg   -u68dnde.jpg   -herg78q.jpg   -g71rdix.jpg   -mbwhygx.jpg  

-cnlje0r.jpg   -kyyrvs5.jpg  
x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2016, 05:44 PM   #18
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: NorthWest NJ
Posts: 948
Total Cats: 41
Default

Quickish update.

My friend is currently most of the way done with a spacerless coolant rerout. There will be a total of 5 coolant hoses in the car after words. Two for the lower rad, one upper rad hose that goes to the back of the head, and then the cursed water plug port will be feeding the turbo which then runs to the mixing manifold.

He found a neat place to run the turbo coolant line across the front of the engine.



He has fabbed his first piece, and I couldn't be an prouder. He made (with direction) a block off plate for the front water neck and to hold the coolant temp sensor.





Finished and installed.



Timing belt on and wires extended for the thermo sensor.

Attached Thumbnails
-nenv8qq.jpg   -nnl45ei.jpg   -mfrzcp0.jpg   -twxmuqr.jpg   -qlwh3ub.jpg  

x_25 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2016, 08:52 PM   #19
Newb
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 30
Total Cats: -1
Default

Very Very good build thread
TwoTone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2016, 10:04 PM   #20
Boost Pope
iTrader: (8)
 
Joe Perez's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 25,545
Total Cats: 1,753
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by x_25 View Post
I used to have that exact same lathe. Homier Tools, right?

After cleaning up all the slop and lubing the hell out of everything, it was surprisingly capable for the price. Used to to make spring-perch spacers for my Bilsteins, a hub to mount a 36-1 crankwheel on top of the stock pulley, to flatten the (originally triangular) teeth on said wheel, a bunch of random little spacers and threaded adapters for custom projects at work, and so on. Not much swing, but a great little tool for working on little parts.
Joe Perez is offline   Reply With Quote
 
 
Reply

Related Topics
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Turbo timer, NB2 injectors, Greddy BSpec EBC, fuel rail, other stuff turbofan Miata parts for sale/trade 14 02-01-2017 10:20 PM
is this T25 turbo? from SAAB 93 loveSONG769 DIY Turbo Discussion 12 12-28-2015 03:57 AM
Turbo, Stainless Brake/Clutch Lines, Bushings, Pads, Harness Pads greddygalant Miata parts for sale/trade 10 12-22-2015 01:18 AM
Planning stages - Turbo build Mutt DIY Turbo Discussion 23 12-19-2015 12:40 PM
Nb intake manifold, mazda comp mounts, oil cooler btabor Miata parts for sale/trade 0 12-16-2015 05:49 PM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:59 AM.