Mx6er's 2nd Trac

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Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby mx6er2587 » Sun Oct 16, 2016 1:39 am

I bought terracar's old trac a few months back and have been slowly bringing it back to life. Finally decided to make a project thread for it.

Some background: The car had been running quite well and was in great shape until it was in a front end accident back in December 2011. The accident among other damage bent both frame rails in front of the strut towers totaling the car and resulting in a salvage title. The previous owner wasn't able to find the time to make the repairs so the car mostly sat until this summer when I purchased it. I had it shipped to me from Washington state and a week later it was sitting in a local walmart parking lot fresh off the trailer and filthy from the years of sitting

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I fortunately had a spare widebody fender and a local junk yard provided a facelift gt bumper (actually my second favorite to the RC), some new turn signals and corner lights, and a 100% intact carbon fiber trim piece. With those parts loaded up in the hatch the car was dropped off at a local body shop to have the frame straightened and the replacement parts mounted up to ensure fitment.

A much needed bath before driving over to the shop.
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After a $1300 bill that was all labor she came home and is looking pretty good. Everything lines up nicely and the shop was able to get everything back to matching factory specs. Astute viewers will notice the hood is a bit wonky. Its bent causing a small gap on the passenger side. Its slated to be replaced with an RC hood I picked up recently so I told the shop not to worry about trying to fix it.

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With the hardest hurdle cleared I set to work fixing all the issues that would prevent the car from passing the enhanced inspection it's required to go through to receive a rebuilt title. The windshield was cracked and the tires had dry rotted from sitting so both were replaced. I found a good number of vacuum lines that had become cracked and brittle so those got replaced too.

The alternator had failed so I replaced it with a spare unit from my parts bin.

The car came with a trackforged midpipe and KO downpipe but they weren't installed. I got a great deal on an HKS catback exhaust so I installed all 3 with fresh MLS gaskets and while I was in there I replaced the exhaust manifold gasket and all the turbo gaskets too.

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The car now runs much better although I'm still trying to hunt down a rubber throttle body inlet as mine is cracked pretty bad.

The brakes did not appreciate sitting for 4 years and the caliper guide pins were not moving freely and the front passenger side caliper was almost completely locked up. I installed new front rotors and pads. Wire wheeled the guide pins, replaced the hardware, and broke the seized caliper loose then lubed everything up. Brakes feel 1000 times better. Tomorrow I'll be tackling the rear.
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mx6er2587
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Re: Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby mx6er2587 » Sun Oct 16, 2016 2:07 am

The other project I've been working on is relocating the battery to the trunk. With a straight intake on the car and the factory unit long gone the battery was left balanced on top of the engine mount. This would not pass inspection as the battery must be secured. Moving the battery to trunk seemed like the best option. I knew I wanted the battery to sit on the passenger side but there's very limited room there if you have a spare and don't want to cut or remove the hatch plastic. I determined a full sealed box wasn't going to fit so I bit the bullet and bought an optima battery and a very close fitting hold down.

The hold down is 1/8" steel plate and came uncoated and with no mounting holes drilled. I machined in 4 bolt holes to match up with the voids in the bottom of the optima battery (There's gaps between each spiral coil in the battery) I also powder coated the hold down in a wrinkle black.

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You can see even with this slim box there is barely enough room. I got lucky and one of the holes lined up perfectly to run down through the rear frame rail. The battery hold down must be attached to the frame per NHRA rules to be track legal. I ran a second bolt through just the floor pan with some nice wide washers to distribute load.

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I used 0/1 gauge cable run through the cabin all the way back to rear trunk panel. The negative cable was grounded in the spare wheel well. I installed a 200 amp breaker in the passenger side wheel well behind the access panel where the factory jack would be. I think the whole thing turned out very nicely. I just need to buy a distribution block to mount in the front to finish up. Currently the positive wires are just bolted together wrapped in electrical tape to prevent them from contacting anything else.

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mx6er2587
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Re: Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby pintoBC_3sgte » Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:50 am

Nice! I wondered who he sold the car to. Great to see you getting her back up and running
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1991 Toyota Celica

Re: Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby mx6er2587 » Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:05 pm

Work has been progressing fairly well.

Rear brakes are 98% done. Need to go back in and tighten the parking brake adjusters. Starts to slip a bit on steep hills. With new pads/rotors/guide pins all around the brakes are dead quiet. I'm very pleased.

The final part I need to finish the car up for state inspection and registration is a rear suspension arm. Current one is bent. Might steal one off the other car temporarily.

With the major mechanical stuff mostly out of the way for the moment I turned to some smaller issues. The passenger side door was not unlocking with a key and was occasionally sticking when using the power locks. I disassembled the door panel and found that the linkage to the lock barrel was not attached. Simple fix for part one of the problem. I removed the entire latch mechanism and cleaned and lubed it which seams to have cured part 2 of the problem.

I fixed the wonky tachometer in my gauge cluster by replacing the two capacitors on the gauge board as described in several threads here.

The system 10 amp is blown and not functioning. I took it apart and found a number of fried components and unfortunately a rather burnt section of the board where the traces are gone. I'm going to attempt a repair; I've got components on order and I believe I've worked out where the traces are supposed to go so I'll try soldering jumper wires where the traces are now missing. We'll see how that one goes this week.

When I was working on the door locks I found that the original 8" door speakers were trashed. The foam surrounds were almost completely gone. Instead of hacking up the system 10 boxes or doors I decided to measure up the speaker cones and frame and ordered a set of replacement foam surrounds off ebay for ~$10.

Here's the new foam next to the 8" midwoofer. I had already cleaned up what little of the old surround was there, but really it doesn't look too much different than it did in the car

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New surround test fit

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New surrounds installed with the stock gasket glued back in place

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And finally checking out the finished product with my trusty $0 redneck stereo test bench :lol:

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sounds pretty good* :P





*Good in this context means no distortion or scraping. These drivers are mediocre full range speakers and could really stand to be back in their boxes.
Last edited by mx6er2587 on Wed Nov 02, 2016 10:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
mx6er2587
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Re: Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby Bempa » Wed Nov 02, 2016 7:01 pm

Love this kind of ressurection threads! Great work, going to follow this :D
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Re: Mx6er's 2nd Trac

Postby mx6er2587 » Thu Feb 09, 2017 1:08 pm

Wow been a while since I updated this. No major changes to the car itself, but another huge milestone has been reached. The car has passed the Pennsylvania enhanced inspection process required to get a rebuilt title for salvage vehicles. In other words the car has been blessed and deemed safely repaired. The paperwork is on its way to the state and I should finally have a title for the car with my own name on it soon!

The enhanced inspection is pretty detailed and they are looking at the areas that were damaged so I wanted the car to be as stock as possible when I took it in. That means DOT approved bumpers and lights. Now that its through time for some fun. I have a full set of clear corners/turn signals, an RC bumper, and RC hood to go on as soon as it warms up a bit! After that it will be a slow trickle of upgrades while I drive the car for a few months while I decide the how/when/where of getting the car painted.
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