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Old 05-06-2011, 06:56 AM   #1
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Default I'll get turbo'ed eventually

I have had my 91 for 5 years now and it has been a blast to play with in the mountains, run at autocrosses and track days, even with the old 200k 1.6 engine. Since day one I couldnít help thinking that the same power to weight ratio I have in my 1.8T Jetta would be great in the miata. Hell thatís less than 150 whp needed! I am not turboíed yet but this should document the process.
I got a wrecked 96 M-edition parts car back in 09 and parted it out and used the cash to finance the 1.8 engine rebuild and upgrades to my 91.


It doesnít get any easier than this! Pulling the engine with the nose cut off was great, even on my own. I had transplanted pretty much the whole front end onto a 97 that had rear-ended a truck hitch.
The 96 engine looked real good after disassembly with very little wear on most parts, especially for 160k+ on the clock. I sent the engine to the machine shop for a cleaning, honing, 3-angle valve job and a few other small things, just a refresh. Based on my dumbass not measuring correctly I had to return the pistons I ordered and send the block back for a 0.020 overbore. The removed the valvetrain in order for me to do some porting and polishing.


After reading a few books and a ton of stuff online I finally got brave enough and did a gasket match porting job on the intake and slightly less than gasket port on the exhaust. I also did a good bit of valve de-shrouding of the valves. I tried to geusstimate the material removed and had them shave the head accordingly to make up for any increase in combustion chamber volume. For anyone that is looking at de-shrouding the valves, I strongly recommend CCíng the chambers if you do it to make sure you keep individual chambers the same and to accurately determine your compression ratio. I ended up with a compression ratio much lower than I was planning on.
Luckily I came across a MSM turbo deal that I could not pass up. This changed the whole build goal. Hopefully the lowered compression will not be so bad after all.

I decided to install the engine NA first, but tried to think ahead of any fitment and design issues that would be easier to resolve while the engine was out. I went ahead and adapted the head for a KIA re-route with a valve in the heater core hose line to stop flow of hot coolant back to the cold pump inlet. I also drilled and tapped the oil pan for turbo oil return and oil temp sensor while I had it all out. I also mocked up the turbo to work on some custom hard lines for coolant and oil feed. I got lucky and got a BEGI intercooler with intake plumbing and partial reroute kit for dirt cheap. It included the BEGI water pump inlet. I



The standard Miata water pump inlet hits the MSM turbo.

TheMSM inlet clears the MSM turbo but ran real close to the NA AC compressor, too bad I canít find a pic with the compressor mocked up. You canít see it from the pic, but the heater core tube has a nipple to attach the coolant return for the turbo.

I ended up using the BEGI inlet I got with the intercooler due to the fact that it did not have the metal heater core hose running right behind the exhaust. After installing the engine NA I ended up swapping back to the standard inlet until I get the turbo ready to go sue to having clearance issues with the BEGI inlet pipe to accessory pulleys and belts as well as clearance issues with the swaybar and cooling fans. I will have to fabricate something to make this inlet work better to clear the belts, swaybar and the larger radiator and fans. It doesnít help that the 1.8 sits further forward than the 1.6 as well. I have pictures of the issues if anyone is interested.

CXRacing 55mm radiator is massive compared to the core thickness of the factory radiator.
I have had a MS1 box laying around since 06 that my brother made for me while he was in Afghanistan. I finally installed it last spring and got it tuned on the 1.6. I strongly believe in the scientific approach and taking baby steps. This way I go to figure out the MS on an engine that I did not care if I blew it up. I was originally going to run it parallel with the factory ECU but ended up running it standalone with connectors plugging into the oem harness. I have helped people MS other cars and built the MS we installed on my brotherís FFR cobra back in 05. It is so easy on the Miata itís not even funny, there factory harness had pretty much everything you need. I did add the 5.0 TPS in place of the useless 1.6 tps.
At the same time I fell for the Riceland trick. They went in pretty easy with the NB top hats and a little massaging to the bushing sleeves to make them fit. I have to say they rode 10 times better than my AGX shocks with RB springs and cut down bump stops. It really made me aware how stupid it is to lower the Miata and use the factory hard bump stops once I installed the removed AGXís on my wifeís 97 with factory springs. Her car handles much better now but is still very comfortable. The whole goal of this project is to end up with a dependable car that will run a few track days a year without major hiccups, so when I found out the Ricelands are only crap shocks shoved in a pretty shell, I had to get rid of them. I do not want to ruin a track day weekend due to a blown shock. I ended up ordering a set of Re-valved Bilsteins from Bernie. I finally got them this past week after 10 weeks. Hopefully they will go on soon. The moral of the story is, save up and buy the right thing to begin with instead of buying 2 cheaper setups and one expensive one, spending twice as much as just getting the right thing to begin with.




After running it this way for a few months I pulled the 1.6 late summer.


The HF 1 ton cherry picker is just too short. It worked perfectly taking the 1.8 out of the 96 with the nose cut off but had to stretch and squish the bumper to get the engine out.

That is a nasty engine bay! 200k miles and a few gallons of leaked oil!
We ended up crushing one of the heater core tubes. I was glad to find a tube swaging tool at Home Depot. Gently tapping it into the tube while gripping the outside with the appropriate size vice grip returned the tube close enough to round that I did not have any leaks. I was getting ready to replace the heater core so I am real glad to have found that easy fix.

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Old 05-10-2011, 09:49 AM   #2
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Nice looking build you've got here. Clean!
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:31 PM   #3
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I got the rebuilt 1.8 installed a while back (early 2011). I chose to be adventurous and install the engine and complete front subframe from the bottom. I doubt I will do it again in my garage, but if I had access to alift it would be the way to do it. I have done it with the rear subframe and diff before and it saves a whole bunch of time.

I have been running the 1.8 on MS2 for a while now. The porting definitely made a huge improvement up top. My 1.8 feels much stronger than my wifeís 97 above 5000 rpm. I have done 4 track days now and everything seems to hold up very well.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:35 PM   #4
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Here is a tip, don't go hot ******* around the block just 30 minutes before Thanksgiving dinner!

I finally blew the 1.6 diff after a year or so with the new 1.8. It blew with vary little warning on a pretty hard 1st to second shift. I think I did the worst damage trying to limp it home.

That 1.8 ring gear is a good bit bigger than the 1.6 one. Luckily I had a 1.8 torsen from the 96M donor car. I has just picked up an open 2000 diff with the 4.30 so I just had to swap the ring gear over onto my 4.1 torse. I was really surprised how big a difference the torsen made. Now I want one for the wife's 97.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:39 PM   #5
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I got both our Miatae painted early 2012. We took both ofthem to MAACO. It was a painful experience, but I am happy with the results. Wehad issues because of a useless manager that would not stop painting cars eventhough they had a broken paint booth. My 91 got painted a single stage urethaneToyota Barcelona Red, nice metallic, my wife calls it the Prius red. I had todo something with the 4 different shades of original red that kept gettingworse. The 97 got a Mercedes Osmium Gray with clear coat. The gray must be thelowest maintenance color ever, it never looks dirty. Much better than thepeeling clear coat it had before.

I also added some louvers to the hood at the time I painted it. The lip spoiler was added more to provide a location to get brake cooling air than anything. I would like to make a splitter for track day use, but that will be a while.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:41 PM   #6
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Late 2012 I started playing around with some WilwoodDynalite calipers and 11” Mini rotors for my front brakes. I managed to fit itall under 15” NB factory wheels (primary goal) and have been driving with thissetup for over a year now on the street. My son was born late 2012 and $$$ hasbeen tight so no track day testing yet. I did make a set of brackets forsomeone on the forum and I hope they will get some track testing data in soon. The Mini rotors are just as cheap if notcheaper than the Corrado rotors but offer a better design with improved diskventing. The big boy 11.5” kits are awesome, but would require new wheels andare more than I need for my eventual 200whp goal.

https://www.miataturbo.net/race-prep...corrado-68784/

Now I just need to finish the caliper brackets I made to use factort calipers on 11" sport rotors (like M-tuned kit).
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:54 PM   #7
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I didn't realize you had a build thread! I've actually got an MSM under-manifold heater feed pipe sitting in the garage, the one with the nipple you were talking about earlier. Want to give it a shot?

Quote:
Originally Posted by relte View Post
I did make a set of brackets forsomeone on the forum and I hope they will get some track testing data in soon. The Mini rotors are just as cheap if notcheaper than the Corrado rotors but offer a better design with improved diskventing. The big boy 11.75Ē kits are awesome, but would require new wheels andare more than I need for my eventual 200whp goal.
That would be me! I've also been driving on them for a while now and I can tell you I have a lot more brake torque available than my stock 15x6 & 195 s.Drives have grip, but the modulation is fabulous. (15x9 & RS3 will solve that ) Mr Relte is correct, the Mini rotors are stupid cheap and readily available. I got married this last summer so no track testing yet, but I cannot get these things to fade even with super aggressive mountain driving. Can't wait to abuse them on track!
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Old 01-08-2014, 03:42 PM   #8
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Wait, how come I wasn't offered a set of these same brake brackets?

This is the set-up I want danggit...
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Old 01-09-2014, 01:29 PM   #9
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EO2K, thanks, but I tried the MSM waterpump inlet first and it did not have the same clearance to the NA AC compressor, I am sure the NB AC compressor is a little smaller. I am not to worried about fabbing up a custom water pump inlet that removes the little coolant line running under the header and clears the turbo inlet, AC compressor and PS pump.

Efini, PM me if you are interested in brackets. I havn't made a set in a while but might be able to for the right motivation!
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Old 01-14-2014, 01:11 PM   #10
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My 13 month old racer! This is what he does while I wrench.
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Old 01-14-2014, 05:15 PM   #11
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Cute kid!

I have a very similar pic of my guy about that same age.

Now my boy is almost 3 and he's much more "helpful" in the garage...
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Old 01-15-2014, 01:46 PM   #12
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Thanks. I can't wait for mine to be more "helpfull" or at least not eat everything he sees. The day after that picture was taken I had him in the driver's seat for a little while and noticed he was chewing on something. Turns out he had a little screw in his mouth from the fuel pump cover plate that I had removed and placed in the cup holder (like a dummy) and forgot about when I set him in there. I am not taking that risk again!
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Old 01-15-2014, 04:51 PM   #13
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"helpful"...careful what you wish for.

My son can actually be helpful at times, he really likes using the electric 3/8" impact and he's actually helped remove bolts before. That was fun and cool.

He can also be helpful at times and randomly pick up a hammer and "fix" the door of one of the cars. He's also very helpful at relocating bolts that may be sitting anywhere within his reach...

Anyway, I really look forward to a couple years from now when he can be my wrench monkey and I don't have to constantly keep an eye on him in the garage, preventing him from killing himself and destroying everything.
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Old 02-10-2015, 06:35 PM   #14
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Is there a turbo in there yet?

Once the miata is running and back in columbia we should grab a beer sometime.
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Old 02-11-2015, 09:20 AM   #15
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Turbo has has been in for about a year now. I am in the middle of tuning EBC and possibly going MS3 with tax money so it might be a month or two before I have it ready to drive again. PM me in a few weeks and well meet up.
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Old 07-13-2015, 02:07 PM   #16
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I havn't updated the thread in a while, but here are some pics of the wheels and tires that showed up last week. $530 for set of 15x7 Konig Dial-In and Nitto Neogen 205's is a steal! Gotta love discount tire direct.



I reallt wish I would take the time to paint the inside of the disks to prevent the ugly rusting.

Clearance to the Willwood calipers up front. Much better clearance than I had under the NB 15" wheels. I bet I could step up to the 11.5" mini rotor.



Before pictures to show tight clearance on old wheels.

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Old 02-17-2016, 10:42 PM   #17
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So, how exactly did you solve the water pump inlet pipe problem? Did you use the MSM pipe or something else. It would help if you could post some pictures.
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