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So I bought a 10th AE

Old 06-25-15, 08:15 PM
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MI So I bought a 10th AE

A classic tale of "it followed me home" with no need of a classic "what car" thread. I saw the ad on a FB group "local" to me and found a killer deal that I knew I would regret if I hesitated...

So I called the next day, and then the day after that it, it followed me home!


(And with my handy dandy truck, frankenburban)
It was in good hands, I pulled up to this t2 between 2 mazdaspeed 6s and a v6 3 pedal mazda6 hatch.




This car is one of the 1500 produced AEs. It is largely original too! driver seat was recovered (poorly) the passenger seat needs to be recovered (badly) but it had all of the pixles, I have never been in an FC rx7 that has had all wiper modes on the switch in working order. GOOD sign.

The last owner had it for 7 years and did his customizing but went to rebuild the engine and it never ran after that, has low compression. But he did manage to repair some rust and repaint it...

but just look at that under side!



however it has a little hillbilly w/ import vibe. The Smoked out lights and two tone (slight black on the bottom)with black pin stripe in the moulding and the driver seat... Easily reverseable though!




But the underside was bedlinered but I think it needs to come off then POR the surface rust and or pre wash with muratic acid and water.

but overall, a few spots here and there very minor, no rust and everything pretty much intact so here are a few other shots.


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Old 06-25-15, 08:16 PM
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not my doing but the two tone continues onto the engine bay:


so that will need to be corrected when the engine comes out.



Neat features unique to the 10th ae
1. Power steering cooler
2. White wheels
3. Unique white paint
4. Bronze/gold tinted glass
5. Headlamp cleaner washer system (IN 19 FREAKING 88!)
6. 10th AE unique interior
7. 10th AE shift ****/boot unit (I have but in poor condition)
8. 10th AE steering wheel
9. 10th AE fender badges (this one does not have)
10. 10th AE floormats (does have!)







probably some other things too, I think there is a special key but this doesn't have that .

Oh well, expect updates on this in a few months but right now its in even moar gooder hands...
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Old 06-25-15, 08:18 PM
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the car came with this gem!




Yup. Really good bad ideas have surfaced:



(ive never owned 3 rx7s at a time, do I win an award?)

anywhoo, back to the build.

They appear to have switched places…



But first! Here is where the 2 build threads briefly cross paths. The 10th AE will not be a race car so around town driving with the occasional autoX or spirited driving. I need the PS ratio (15.2:1) compared to manual rack ratio (20.3:1) in the rallycross car, I kept fighting the wheel and the ease of steering and lack of parts in the engine bay is nice on the t2 since many other parts are taking up space, much easier to service the ignition side of the engine bay. More details on steering in franken wankel thread.





See!? Much easier! Also note the thicker aftermarket sway bar, it is red. Ooooohhhhhhhh reddddddd bar, bonus!

Okay so, the other car. Well it was a friend of mines that he ran for rallycross, started messing with it. Gave up bought an ecoboost mustang and wanted it out of his driveway. Ran when parked and ran until partily disassembled, the car has 100k on it.

I bought it for the shocks and engine, engine showed 80psi on both rotors, so it was properly worn but would still run, I wanted to get into this project at the end of the year but this was a good deal and I had nothing going on over the weekend so an rx7 friend came by and we shared parts, beers and tools and got to work!

STEP 1: Remove the engine from ebony.

STEP 2: remove the engine from ivory:

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Old 06-25-15, 08:19 PM
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Step 3: mix and match engine parts:



10th AE came with new clutch/throw out bearing so that was transferred over to the engine from ebony. Ebonys clutch was on its last leg, good spare though.


Step 4: insert ebony’s engine into ivory:



Step 5: Do not have intake manifold gaskets or turbo gasket…


Step 6: PBR

Step 7: like in rally, press on regardless! So with a few days lead time on those parts we got busy doing everything else we could do which was chassis oriented. Because it was a rallycross car my friend graciously decided to buy new racing beat springs and slap them on bilstiens with new rubber, so I graciously installed them into the 10th ae:



The former owner who repainted this car, painted EVERYTHING. Literally. Some parts nicer than others, he did do new calipers/pads/rotors/ball joints/tie rod ends so this wraps up the front suspension (minus end links) being fully cleaned up/”restored”

And onto the rear!
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Old 06-25-15, 08:20 PM
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Again the prior owner replaced rear calipers/pads/rotors then painted the calipers but shocks were still bad. Matching brand rear sway bar, doesn’t look like racing beat, maybe RE speed? Not sure. Some suspension bushings look worn/tired/aged but that will be a next summer concern and the endlinks are in poor shape.

You will see that there just isn’t fancy suspension going on back there…



Its my old non turbo racing beat cat-back! (you can tell by the dented muffler) and it is stainless, should add a nice touch to the sound, looks, and performance.

After installing the exhaust and bleeding the brakes we tossed the wheels back on the car and got back to business, with the parts car we can swap over the reflectors to de-rice it!



Good news for the rear tail lights though….




Its film! But swapping it over is much easier than removing this and cleaning the adhesive off.


And ta da!


Back inside the car the new engine is. Oiling system is hooked up, chassis is squared away, fuel lines are ran, ignition is hooked up and organized with various new NGK plugs/wires to choose from between the two cars 

Had minor wiring repair, brake fluid level switch, oil level sender and something else that is probably useless:



More updates soon to come.

Last edited by fidelity101; 06-25-15 at 08:24 PM.
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Old 07-04-15, 07:31 PM
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Congrats on the great find.
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Old 07-07-15, 02:27 PM
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What a great looking car! Good luck with it.
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Old 07-08-15, 09:33 PM
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Nice car, looking forward to seeing more
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Old 07-26-15, 11:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Owlix_ View Post
Nice car, looking forward to seeing more
Thanks!, You got it!


Another neat thing about these 10th anniversary cars is that they have a unique momo shift **** with boot, these are hard to come by but mine is in bad shape but I may try and salvage it (Read, pay some shoe/leather store to deal with it). PO decided to do nice shift boot and e-brake boot so I don't mind right now.



Took a few more things from the donor car and these seats were in much nicer shape than my stock beat up ones and I once I have the car mobile, I can concern myself with finding correct seats once AC is re-installed. (long term goal)



Since this car was supposed to be a cruiser and around town kind of car, It must have a radio and it currently lacks one…




I had to do some repair work too:



Ah, here we are!


The front speakers don't seem to work and the antenna did not want to go up, harrumph! However, at least I still have working intermittent wipers!


This thing was last registered in 2011. It has sat around for some time and I found that I needed to replace the tires because they were even older and dry rotted, average tread life on them so I decided to go with 225/55/16s via continental DW variety. Very good wet traction and I enjoy them on my wagon with 18s, SUPER soft sidewalls that will roll over but are great around town summer car with spirited driving and maybe a handful of autoXs a year.

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Old 07-26-15, 11:38 PM
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Then it was time for ebony the T2 to go its new owner, another long time loyal Mazda enthusiast. Frankenburban happily abided.





There was some emission delete/removal and oil injection system removed to simplify the stock setup. This is a very handy diagram for when doing said emission deleting/engine simplifying.







When you perform this task you can also remove the double throttle plate setup on the throttle body and then port&polish it like so:



And this is a stock one:


(ewwww)

It was starting to come together!




It is a good time while you’re in there to replace a few gaskets, hobble together exhaust parts, tweak this or that here or there, run new vacuum lines and etc. Good enough to run eh?

Because it had been sitting so long once I had everything hooked up, it should fire, right? Nope, added 5 gallons of fresh gas (with premix of course) got it to kind of kick over with enough fogging of persuasion fluid (starting fluid) and start but instantly die. Diag’d a bad fuel pump …
These screws are a PITA!

Rusted and usually stuck in there, these were and then PO painted bedliner over them so I had to grind them out but (I love my carbides) then vice grips got them easily.

Out with the old in with the new!

Also, the new fuel pump came as a kit with new filter and hardware as well as stainless steel allen head hardware for the fuel pump body to gas tank – bonus!

When the repaint occured there was bedliner done on both sides and then a plastic sheet was above that and below the carpet! Nice added comfort touch.
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Old 07-26-15, 11:40 PM
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I finally had some open free time over the weekend to get at this and I got it running., even enough to put about 18 hard miles on it and did a little woodward cruising  Lots of updates scattered around timing and life etc but don’t worry just because you don’t see an update here doesn’t mean I have not been working on it I just get slow to updating this.



And while doing so… THE ANTENNA FIXED ITSELF! IT’S A MIRACLE!!!!!!!!!!!



And its current status:

Still a few tweaks to adjust and sort out but mostly complete and capable! Next up is finishing the chassis, prior owner did have a good start and my Bilsteins setup was a nice touch but wait to you see the next update
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Old 08-05-15, 11:03 PM
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Well I got the battery cables better hooked up and battery tied down. A little more TPS/throttle cable adjustment and it idles much better, still sounds like a little bit of a boost leak/vacuum leak under boost, you get that cool spaceship whistling sound but I put about a tank of gas and netted 10.2 mpg. I was having fun on the loud pedal quite a bit.

But the loud pedal was quiet and it became the zoom pedal.
Got bored and starting picking at the rear, the film came off very easy, much more original.

Well in a few days they having summer sno*drift, the normal snow stage rally I frequent in January, however they are running a regional rally of the same (or similar) roads as they do at sno*drift. Each day will be progress. THE GOAL? Alignment by Friday and then drive up Friday afternoon to our ritual meeting cabin spot up north. It will be a good break in/shakedown for the car after the chassis will be essentially refreshed.
Monday I was sick so I didn’t get much done but Tuesday I was feeling better and decided to tackle the front suspension/steering:
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Old 08-05-15, 11:06 PM
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TUESDAY: New wheel bearings, new front lower control arms w/ poly bushings, I removed the stock control arms and found out that they had poly bushings too but these were more aesthetically pleasing.
I also decided to do front endlinks, original ones were toast. Again, poly bushings.


WEDNESDAY: Rear suspension time!!!!! But there is a catch. I have more goodies!

Because this, is going to replace the beat up subframe (delrin bushings installed) and because of that I need a fancy adjustable camber bar because were already this deep and I am pretty sure that this piece is required because the delrin bushings for subframe.


These hubs are loaded! Drilled rotors, new calipers, hawk pads, DTSS eliminator delrin bushings, new wheel bearings, new bearing seals, refurbished endlinks again and with once more, polyurethane. (notice a trend here?) lower control arms painted (nicer) and with can you guess? Yes poly bushings.

Time to swap the differential in and bolt the axles to the differential, the diff bushings are stock and appears to be great so I am retaining them.


THURSDAY! (has not really happened yet) but re-assemble the rear end and then find time for alternator swap (run dual alternator/wp/crank belts) and clean up the factory grounds and loop them with some new low resistance wires and a little turbo R&R to replace an intake manifold bolt that I forgot, it is the 1 bolt for the LIM does not share with the non turbo… so I never installed it – Because I’m used to working on NAs… oops!
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Old 08-11-15, 10:13 PM
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Well no updates from summer snowdrift means that brown santa screwed me, wheel spacers came in on Monday. I had everything ready to go for a Friday alignment…

But anyways, with the rear sub frame assembly on the car just a little alignment here and pry bar there and then lower the car onto the assembly. I have done this so many times on the ground in cold months in a non heated garage on my back with two terrible floor jacks. I think this method now shaved me a few hours of awful labor.


And then install the rear knuckle assembly



Here is a good view of all the goodies 100% together, looks much different here than the rallycross car but actually quite similar.



AAAAAAAAAND The spacers fit like crap and don't even fit on the front so they are getting returned this has been a very frustrating experience just to run larger tires. Makes me wish I just got the stock size and called it good. I made the rears fit but the fronts I am going to have to go with longer studs and different spacer or something else. Stoopid ****…
I did find my vacuum leak though! The PO only hand threaded in the OMP plugs on the block, it idles much better now, It has an intermittent hunt still between 500-1000 rpm, but a twist of the variable resistor helped take that nearly all out but may take a look at the TPS one more but it now runs a lot better at off throttle.

But at least everything is together in the back 100%


Even managed to close up a big exhaust leak on the factory DP to mid pipe area, the car is much quieter now but it was not very loud before.
After that, I did the alternator double pulley upgrade and then I oriented my wheels the correct way!


Oops…

I am using my cheap autozone spacers right now for alignment purposes since they are within same size of the spacers I need to run. Right now it has a .5”(almost 13mm) in the front and 15mm in the back but for just swapping a steering rack and replacing the entire suspension the alignment was not all too bad.



Next up, fix the solders on the stock radio, when you touch the power *** the front speakers can turn off or turn on and perform the ground clean up, passenger side power window is very slow going up when it reaches the ¾ mark so that may require some small attention. Friday is scheduled for a full detail so expect some nice photos to be taken in some sunshine (Michigan permitting) and not at bad timing either, dream cruise is Saturday! But I will actually be racing (rallycross) but there is still much work to be done on that.
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Old 08-17-15, 08:26 PM
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And with a final detail there is no real update but the project is basically done! I have a few things to tweak and sort out (grounds mostly) and just enjoy it! Factory radio is being rebuilt by a friend of mine (front speakers cut out when you wiggle the power/volume ****) and it is time to shop for some cassettes!




















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Old 08-18-15, 07:20 AM
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Super clean car, keep it up!
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Old 08-18-15, 01:33 PM
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thanks! I got a few looks at dream cruise with it but most people thought it was a supra

This winter I will tear down the original engine and see whats going on inside then the plan will be a streetport with some updates on the internals as well as a knightsports turbo accompanied with larger injectors, rtek and 3" downpipe.
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Old 09-30-15, 10:47 AM
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I have been chasing and cleaning and looping all ground points to get rid of the 3800 rpm hesitation and poor throttle tip in and stalling while cold issues. it runs and drives much better but still with idle adjustment and idle enrichment it is poor on the low throttle and the car doesn't have it characteristic rotary smoothness until it warms up. Idle is still intermittent good. The turbo inlet duct is cracked about .75" long at where it mounts on the turbo inlet, a replacement one arrives later this week and then I can re test the idle and possibly more TPS adjustment.

I always thought this engine was burning coolant too but when I went to clean the grounds at the ECU I found this:



Yes that is coolant and thus heater core failure, the WORST job on this car. This car is going into storage soon so this is future Kevin's problem so right now it wont be driven the 1200 mile journey to LSPR and back in a few weeks.

but in better news I dropped off the 10th AE shifter to a local shoe repair place and they cleaned up and fixed some of the stitching on the leather boot. I also had a friend of my re solder some contacts on the OEM radio and now I can listen to cassettes again!!!!!!!! (legit excited, no exaggeration - I love vinyl and cassettes)


Also I went autoxing for the 1st time in this car sunday, did okay lots of driver error and being rusty behind the wheel. I took 60th out of 110. 2nd in class. Hopefully some good pictures soon though.
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Old 08-17-17, 02:55 PM
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No heater core issue (thank god) just a poorly tightened hose clamp. I haven't updated this in a while but the car now sports an S5 Turbo and S5 intake/throttle body. Put about 1000 miles on it this summer so far.
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Old 09-27-18, 02:21 PM
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