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Old 12-04-2012, 01:36 AM   #1
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Default Roll Cage in, Dash out...Temporarily..

Hi Guys

When I delivered the car yesterday the rollcage guy kindly suggested that if I remove the dash etc it would save me a LOT of money, so I am sneaking off work tomorrow to remove the dash.

I have no idea how to do this, so far the most I have removed is the centre console and am operating in a very tight timeframe so any tips, links, gotcha's or suggestion would be much appreciated....

Mark.
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:52 AM   #2
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Mark,
it is actually really easy, I think.
I used this:
http://www.miata.net/garage/DashRmv_89_93.pdf

No advice except to take your time when trimming your dash to fit your cage bars. The guy that trimmed my dash cut "far enough" back the first time to not have to do it a second time, and therefore there are huge gaps at the bars. Looks like crap.

It sounds like we are going to have very similar cars in the future! (90, 1.6, tdo5, cage, 10/7k, 225-45/15)

Good luck!
-Mike
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Old 12-04-2012, 01:27 PM   #3
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That PDF is a pretty good write-up.

Remember that in order to remove the dash, you pretty much have to remove everything attached to the dash. There are many, many wire harness connectors that will get snagged when you try to pull the dash out.

Cover anything that you are worried about scratching. A couple layers of blue tape works well. The A-pillar moldings come to mind. Actually, if you are pulling the dash for a chage, you should remove the A-pillar and windshield header molding too. You'll also want to either leave the HVAC blower in place, or leave it in the car. I'd also suggest bolting your race seat in (or leaving it in the car), so the harness bar can be installed at the proper height.

Remember to disconnect the battery and pump the brake a few times, to discharge any left over voltage, and wait a bit before pulling the airbag.

Do you have a steering wheel puller? You may need one to get the wheel off, so I would start there. You don't want to pull apart the inside just to discover that you can't get the steering wheel off.

After the steering wheel, pull the seats, shifter console, and center console.

The nut in the center of the dash at the base of the windshield can be a total PITA do get to. Be patient!

Likewise, be patient with the damn connectors that go the the gauge pod, including the large round connector for the speedo cable. That can be a PITA to get to.

You do not have to do #3 on page 18 to drop the steering column. You can leave those small bolts in place and still push the steering column down enough to get the dash out, though you'll have to do it while trying to pull the dash. If you are driving the car to the cage builder after you remove the dash, you'll want to have those small bolts (#3, page 18) in place.

Again, if you are driving it without the dash in place, be sure to raise the head lights with the button in the center console before you disconnect it. Otherwise, if you need the headlights and turn them on, they will turn on but they won't pop-up.

Good luck with the cage!
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:05 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, that was a major help. Didn't have any major problems after making note of your suggestios and that fantastic PDF.

So 4 hours of sweating and dash out and a plan made. Unfortunately it looks like i'm going to have to lose the fan unit as our rules and ergonomics mean the front vertical of the cage are going to have to go through where the fan/blower (on the left) and the fuse box (on the right) are. i.e. slightly ahead of the door frame.

Now I need to come up with an alternative blower unit and try to re-connect to the ducting in the centre console.

Being a road and track car demisting and driver cooling are imperitive to maintain (especially in our wet, muggy, 10 seasons in one day weather).

Anyone have any suggestions?
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:19 AM   #5
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Move to brisbane!
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:55 AM   #6
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Usually heater and fans can be relocated slightly and remain intact. They do usually require some trimming and an addition of homemade mounting tabs
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:05 AM   #7
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^^ agreed, we moved mine around in 2010 and ended up making some custom piping out of cardboard and duct tape, lasted all season.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:49 PM   #8
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Will there be a 'dash bar' that goes horizontally from the front vertical bars through the area where the dash is? If that is the case the bar will likely pass right through the HVAC box. On one of my cages/cars, I cut the top section of the HVAC box off, trimmed out a section for the bar to pass through, installed the lower section, and then glued the two pieces together. It worked great for years.

I'm pretty sure my front verticals are where yours are. My cage builder welded a mounting point for the blower to the bar, so I could use the factory blower.

Do you have A/C, and are you going to retain it?

Do you need full climate control, or just heated defrost?
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:51 PM   #9
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If that bar is mounted high enough, you can just notch the top of the airbox...do a search for miata cage installs and you will see what I mean.
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:23 PM   #10
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Well, that all sounds a lot more promising than I feared.

There will be no horizontal bar under and across the dash at this point.

Mounting tabs for the blower on the verticals would be logical, unfortunatley our sanctioning body seem to have lost any sense of logic and NO tabs are allowed to be part of the cage structure!!!

I am currently in "discussion" with them to have Seat belt mounts added to the roll bar. Driving around with just harness the past 6 months has been a bloody nuisance.

Right, so mods to the inlet and mounting brackets seem feasible......then shorten the soft triangle shaped duct to the centre unit "shouldn't" be too hard...right?


Sounds like the tools for this job are, Hot glue gun, duct tape and Selleys No more Nails! (My dear mum thought No more Nails could fix ANYTHING when I was growing up!! )
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