Diary of a Mad Project - 2000

20 January 2000

My plans have been thwarted again! Over New years the engine was going to come out, but my ST165 blew the clutch cancelling those plans. Parts will be ordered next week and hopefully into the panelbeater March.

15 May 2000

Well the parts are finally here from Japan. The engine is out and everything forward of the firewall has been removed. The car is currently at the panelbeaters. The repairs entail strapping the car to a chassis machine and bending the chassis rail back up. A 3D measurement system is used to ensure all vital measurements correspond with the Toyota requirements (per the chassis repair manual). Next all the bent structural parts will be removed (by drilling out spotwelds) and the new ones welded in place. When all done it should take a well trained eye to spot that repairs have been performed.

All the parts are prepared to continue rebuilding the engine also. A Trust forged steel lightweight flywheel has been purchased. The engine will be done ASAP once the body is ready.

The panelbeater will need about 10 days to do the job, so hopefully it will soon be a bit more presentable!

Even in its stripped down state, it still looks damn cool! As this photo from the front shows, it isn't quite straight! Note the top of the radiator crossmember relative to the windscreen.


This photo clearly shows the damage to the front corner. Note that the top rail has bent down right where it was designed to. Trust me, I know what I'm doing...

June 20 2000

Well the engine bay structure has been repaired and the car is painted.  The body is now ready to have the engine bolted in.  Engine bottom end is in being blueprinted and balanced.  All that is required is time and money...

The new enginebay parts can be seen here (the grey and black parts).  All welding is completed in this photo but the welds are yet to be dressed. Believe me,  it looks better with a coat of paint!


The painted enginebay.

October 4 2000

Not a hell of a lot of progress.  Shortblock is still at the engine rebuilder,  machined awaiting assembly.  The engine bay is complete though with the rebuilt master cylinders and all pipework back in place.   The main success is the completion of the engine bay wiring harness.  This harness (about 30mm thick) was torn in half.  I bought a ST202 harness for $50 and spliced the undamaged wires from it into the damaged ST205 harness.  Along with the modifications I made to the harness (alarm and IC water spray relay etc) I spent about 50 hours on this and used about three rolls of loom tape!

Next task will be the completion of alarm installation and (once it arrives) engine assembly and installation.

November 13 2000

Well the car now has a used bonnet and another (used) guard.   A new bumper has arrived from Toyota (only NZ$200!) along with the new headlights.  I now have everything I need to finish the car except for the engine which I'm still waiting on!  Aiming to get the car finished Jan - Feb 2001.

The bumper and headlights have been test fitted as shown below.  The upper headlight support (and hence the top of the bumper) is not quite level so a bit of tweaking is required.  Starting to look like a GT-Four at last!!

Fitted with used bonnet and RHS fender (both silver) and new grey bumper.  Also fitted with 1998+ Japanese headlights. Love that bonnet...


Close up of the headlights.  The inner now have clear lenses and the outer are projector type,  again with clear lenses. Old vs new.


Japanese Headlights:

These headlights were sourced from Toyota NZ and are the stock Japanese headlights.  They are available and I can supply to the US if required,  but note they cost around US$1600 for the set.  However they are designed for right hand drive cars (low beams slant the wrong way) and are not DOT marked so are not US legal.
Not cheap!!

Old vs new.  A hell of a visual difference!

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