Recently I picked up a crashed 1991 GT Four RC for a decent price, and while the White Elephant is at the panel beaters getting a full respray, I thought it might be good to document the progress to get the car back on the road.
Main aim of this project is to save a RC and use some of the spare parts I have stock piled over the years.Thoughts
I'll be up front about this. I was not expecting to take on another project, especially another Celica. While my car is at the panel beaters, I was supposed to be working on various parts of the Elephant in preperation for when I get the car back for re-assembly and my friend's R30 Skyline Coupe which needs an exhaust, plumbed wastegate and wiring. This is strictly a repair job to get a rare car back on the road. I don't expect to throw lots of money into especially as I have so much time and money invested in my main project, and this car has 261,000kms on the engine and body.
As a small bonus:
- I have a car which I can figure out what goes where, since my car is in boxes and scattered around the house
- I get to play around in a GT Four for a little while (interested in the close ratio box)
- I get rid of various parts that have been stockpiled
- I may make some money on this
- Another RC lives for a little longer
The temptation is to install all my upgrade parts onto the vehicle - and there is a lot! But I will resist this (unless I'm getting rid of spares) and just get the car up and running. If I think this is too much, then I'll scavenge the RC box and on-sell the car at a cheap price.
Now, on to the pain..The car:
- 1991 Toyota GT Four RC
- 261,000kms on the clock
- Lowered (maybe King Springs)
- 16" Oz Racing wheels. Rears have 20mm spacers
- Modified exhaust manifold with 38mm waste gate port welded on
- White Pearl paint job (hence the name Pearl)
- HKS turbo timerParts I got with the car:
- 2x 5mm spacers
- 2x air boxes (1 with a reasonably clean filter)
- Original RC CT26 turbo with another compressor impeller (no info on it yet)
- Original springsBody/Exterior:
- Bonnet has been folded. The underside support has bent and punched through the main skin. Bonnet spoiler and side vents are okay
- Bonnet trim has been cracked off
- Bonnet vent has cracked on both sides (you can see through one of the cracks..)
- Bumper has been ripped open and mesh has ripped off screw bosses
- Bumper support has been twisted
- Middle trim support has been twisted and trim has broken
- Bonnet latch vertical support has folded near the latch. Amazingly the latch is still good
- Bonnet latch horizontal support that attaches to the horizontal radiator support has bent
- Radiator support bar has twisted/folded/cracked
- Vertical panel where headlight mounts has been bent in towards ABS pump. Seam sealer has cracked
- Drivers side guard support for indicator unit has been mashed. Main guard panel has received some slight bends
- Drivers side headlight has bent. External panel seems okay
- Drivers side quarter window has been broken as thieves/scum hopped into a gated community to try and steal the car
- Wipers have been replaced at some point and don't sit right
- Wheels are chipped/curbed
- Paint has various chips and isn't the best condition. 1 metre rule applies. A bit of mould has grown in places
- Bump trims have ripples in them from when they were removed
- Minor rustEngine Bay/Exhaust:
- Radiator, AC radiator and W2A radiator have all bent on impact- Exhaust has leak in middle of car somewhere.
- Exhaust box/cannon at rear has been removed (not cleanly - sigh)
- Alternator plug has been replaced and choc blocs have been used for the connection
- Side markers wiring have scotch locks on them (possibly for driving lights)
- O2 sensor wire has broken and been connected back with crimp spade terminal
- Water sensor plug has been broken (prob over time)
- TVSV sensor is broken and has been moved to firewall (it normally sits under inlet manifold?)
- Turbo needs to be repaired, new impeller installed (if so, prob requires compressor housing to be bored out)
- various nuts/bolts/studs have been used/missing/wrong
- Replace various gaskets
- Replace all fluids
- Replace various hoses
- Heater cable firewall bung has been melted to feed alarm wiring through
- AC needs to recharged
- Battery brace rods are missing
- Fusebox plastic has been broken
- Alternator/AC belt needs to be replacedInterior Repair/Replace:
- Drivers side seat fabric foam has been worn away
- Momo leather steering wheel is worn out
- Leather gear knob is worn
- Gear shifter surround and leather is broken and worn out
- Glove box latch has been taken out and glove box is loose
- Passenger side visor is sitting low
- Drivers side A piller has screw holes where a 'monster tacho' probably resided. Has created indentation on the dash pad as well
- Rear passenger seat belt is missing a cover
- Interior smells smokey/musty - needs thorough clean of plastics, carpet, seats. Poss leak of water into cabin due to broken quarter window. I've found old french fries, cigarette filters etc under the seats.
Note: I'm sure there will be more as I find it
So to start off, here are the pics I received of the car:30 June 2014
So the car was transported from Christchurch to Wellington to my friends place. While my car is at the panel beaters, his car is at my place and my new old car is now at his place (explaining this makes sense to me haha)
When Nick got back from work, we got the car pushed into his garage. That evening, we opened up the car to air it out, closed up the garage and I thought 'what have I got myself into!' 1 July 2014
Nick removed the bonnet and the stuff out of the boot and gave the car a vacuum to clean up the glass on the rear passenger seat and to clean the floors. He also wiped down the dash and various plastics with a white cloth and it came out with black streaks! UGH! He then sprayed the interior with a disinfectant spray! He cleaned up the rear quarter window a little removing broken glass and the cling film and tape that was covering the window opening.2 July 2014
so I started on the car by taking the bumper off and inspecting the damage.
As I started disassembly, I noticed that the the bonnet cable was wire tied onto the support to hold it in place. This was the start of the 'just enough' fixes on this car.
Thankfully, the aluminium bumper support was not damaged, but you can see the damage the car took when it shunted into the truck. We believe the truck was also carrying gravel, as there were stones up on the windscreen and scuttle panel. Initially I thought the stones were thrown on to the car while being transported. Truck with gravel makes more sense.
Yay - widy body guard hasn't suffered, though there are some minor dings on the panel
Turbo has been removed but not sure on how long ago. Bit worried that water may have got into the head. Hopefully it won't be an issue when I start the car. Water should have evaporated by then. Will be changing all fluids anyway. Don't worry, the filter will also be changed.
Unflattering 3/4 shot? Again, you can see how much of a shunt the front end took. Luckily its just the front. Could have been a lot worse.
Boot has some minor rust - pretty common.
Initial interior shot. Glovebox is hanging due to latch not installed. Boot seal is in the drivers well as it may be a source of leaking. Will find out later. Broken gear shift surround on pass side floor. Attached together with duct tape no less. Found ciggie butts in the ashtray, no wonder it stunk of smoke if they had been sitting in the car for 6 months!
Drivers rear quarter window. To remove old broken frame and tape residue. New window coming soon.
Oz 16" 'wheels chipped and looking sad. On first inspection, I was wondering about a wheel nut key, and luckily the nuts are hex, of which I have a large 1/2" drive hex socket set to remove the wheels with.
Chips are actually quite deep. Wheels will have to be fully blasted, otherwise I get some new wheels - hmm temptation.
So while the aluminium crash bar has not been damaged, the drivers side bolt that holds the crash bar in, was bent over into the chassis rail. After bending it back and removing the 17mm nut on the underside of the chassis rail, I couldn't get the f'ing bolt out. Some one did a bodgy and used some sort of builders putty/polyurethane/gunk on the bolt and it was stuck in the support.
No amount of hammering using a screwdriver end would push the bolt out. I ended up having to spanner the bolt at the top, while also levering the bolt up. As you can see, I had to stack additional spanners to keep changing the lever point. GRRRR!!! 2.5 hours later..
Here's the culprit - grey gunk included. Bolt is toast - need to get a new one. Support is A-OK though
Later in the dark, I removed the various radiator and finished up as it was getting around 4C degrees outside. Too cold and little light at the front of the car.3 July 2014
A new day brings the continued challenge and seeing what I ended up with the previous night. I did a more thorough inspection and started writing my lists (as per above) while inspecting the car in the daylight6 July 2014
Took a couple of days off to do some other things (including doing stuff on Nick's Skyline) so came back with tools in hand, ready to tackle the next part of the car.
Removed the wheels and was surprised to see a relatively clean suspension setup. Shock boot is a bit dead, but no big deal. Apparently the brakes have been skimmed, but will look at that later.
Jacked the car up and put some jack stands underneath. Zip tied the gearbox cooler to ensure it doesn't drag on the ground.
Passenger side guard off. Usual issues with the flimsy support beam attached to the guard at the lower front twisting. Bolt broke off on the drivers side support
Lots of dirt and crap falling out once the inner plastic guard is removed.
Wow! Factory airbox resonator - threw mine out years and years ago. Strange to see really.
Both gaurds off
Now it looks like a project! haha
Started on getting the radiator support brace removed. Used a spot weld remover drill bit that Nick had. In some places, the drill bit popped straight through the vertical panel steel as it is so thin. Got most of the welds drilled out. Had to use a chisel to pop the welds off if the drill didn't cut out the spot weld.
Hurray! Radiator support off! On inspection, while the metal has been bent, it could easily be repaired and welded back in. Will look at that a little later as an option instead of asking a wreckers to get one off a scrapped car.
Oh btw - the car was originally black if you hadn't noticed from the engine bay and the boot