RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a JDM 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Talk about your project car here

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby scandinavian link » Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:10 pm

Roreri wrote:Everything is a matter of taste. I like the more subdued look of the Olympic III as opposed to the track style of the wheel that came with it. I have the option to go back if I change my mind.


I think it looks great, and an improvement over the track style wheel. But as you say, it's all preference. Nice work!
Members don't see the above ad. Register now - it's free!
bryan kitsune
2013 zn6 (sold), 2000 zzt231 (sold), 1988 st165 (sold), 1990 st185 (brother's...also sold), 1987 ae86 (sold), 1991 sw20 (sold) What a depressing list.
User avatar
scandinavian link
Club Member
 
Posts: 875
Images: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 1:15 pm
Location: indiana

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Thu Sep 23, 2021 7:37 pm

I just got quoted $1400 to replace the A/C compressor…
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby simple » Thu Sep 23, 2021 7:45 pm

Yikes. I did mine on my truck recently. It is an easy job. Replace the dryer, filter and the heat exchanger with the compressor so you have a clean system. I had a mechanic evacuate the system first and when I replaced the parts he refilled the system with freon and checked for leaks (I had one where I didn't get the o-ring on correctly). Less than $500 in parts and I learned a lot.
User avatar
simple
Club Member
 
Posts: 235
Images: 1
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2020 1:42 am
Location: Colorado

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Thu Sep 23, 2021 9:56 pm

Fifth Service 23 September 2021:

Since I had the air conditioning system converted to R134a and charged on the 9th of September, I've been watching it closely, using a meat thermometer in the center climate control vent. On the 9th, it tended to want to settle at about 43 degrees F at idle, dropping to 39 degrees F at 1900rpm. That was cold enough to make my wife ask me to lighten up on it when we took it for a spin.

On the 13th of September I noted that the idle temperature was 46 degrees F, down to 40 degrees F at 1500rpm. I wasn't alarmed but I was watchful.

On the 14th of September the idle temperature was 44 degrees F, down to 39 degrees F while driving.

It was still blowing very cold on the 17th of September. I saw 34 degrees F for a moment.

The evening of the 21st of September, I observed that the idle temperature was 50 degrees F. I made an appointment to take it in the next day to get it looked at and and maybe locked down, but it behaved very well all day, and something came up, so I cancelled the appointment. But then, on the way home, I noticed the idle temperature settled in at about 48 degrees F, so I knew for sure something was slipping.

This morning, as I took it in, I cranked the A/C. It was overcast and raining, and the A/C blew as cold as ever, reaching 36 degrees F sustained just before I reached the Toyota dealership 21 minutes later.

I asked for them to check for leaks and recommend a fix. Also, I asked them to do an oil change, since I hadn't had that done among the fluid changes I'd had done on the first service on the 13th of August. Might as well get a Toyota oil filter on there to replace the Purolator that had been put on it.

Later that day, the service advisor called me and told me that they'd found a small leak on the compressor. Their fix was to replace the compressor. The quote was $1495.05 to install a new OEM compressor. $600 for the compressor and and five shop hours. He said the parts department had a tough time finding the right part... I was as polite as I could manage in my declining, which is to say curt and factual. i was more fired up about the price of the compressor and the possibility that this was the beginning of a long slide into blank check-dom than the hours.

When I went down to pick the GT-Four up, I talked briefly with the service manager. He agreed that I ought to give it a think. My point was "Where does it end? Say I put in a new compressor. What's next? Condenser? Lines? Gaskets and o-rings elsewhere?" He agreed and said that I could pick up an aftermarket compressor and they'd install it, but that they wouldn't warranty it. He said that as we're heading into the cooler months, it's not as urgent.

It occurred to me that the techs might have charged the R-12 compressor with too much PAG oil. Or they might have charged the system with too much refrigerant. There's a conversion factor for putting R-134a into an R-12 system. Did they screw it up? Was that why my A/C system was leaking? I will probably never know, and that's kinda the stone bitch of it. If you want it done right, you have to be able to do it yourself. You can only try and advise people so much. It's hard to find good help.

On the way home, I stopped by the shop I'd had the first and second services at, and scheduled a leak check and a refrigerant top off tomorrow afternoon.

On the way home, it settled in around 45 degrees F while driving, then would start rising when stopped. When I got home, I let it sit idling for a while and it settled in at 55 degrees F, +/- 1 degree.

Maybe I can collect some additional opinions about how to proceed. A full gut and replace is possibly the best approach. Perhaps it might even be a job I'll tackle myself, as you recommend, simple. Given that we're almost to October, this isn't something urgent.

I did a search for the compressor and found this:

Denso Compressor.JPG


I might re-engage tomorrow. The adventure continues.

Simple, what's your opinion about 5 shop hours to replace the compressor? I know there's some steps in there--per the Denso installation guide it's pretty involved. If I want to pursue a more fulsome refit I can get these from DENSOProducts.com:

Denso 471-1238 New A/C Compressor with Clutch
Denso 475-2002 Expansion Device
Denso 477-0112 A/C Condenser
Denso 478-2004 Receiver Drier

Denso 476-0066 Evaporator Core is on national back order--I could place an order to reserve one.
Last edited by Roreri on Wed Sep 29, 2021 4:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby hoys » Fri Sep 24, 2021 3:16 pm

I worked through some AC issues myself.

If your AC compressor has a sensor on the bottom, it is a 10PA17VC, if no sensor on the bottom, 10PA15C. I'm unsure if JDM models used the VC (variable compression) model. USDM models did. It's pretty common for these to leak from about every orifice with their age. Mine leaked mainly from the VC sensor/actuator mounting location, which is just an o-ring. I ended up just rebuilding my compressor if you want some DIY action:

https://www.shopcenturyautoair.com/stor ... A-SYS.html

Replacing the expansion valve is a pain. I'd suggest skipping. There was a recall on USDM models for these back in the 90's. Toyota USA probably can't look up the JDM maintenance, but it might've been replaced.

I'd just replace the compressor and dryer and go from there. It's a very simple job to do yourself and have someone else charge the system if you aren't comfortable. Also I suggest replacing all of the union o-rings in the system. Again this is super easy to DIY.

1,400 for an AC compressor is highway robbery.
hoys
Club Member
 
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2015 2:05 am

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Fri Sep 24, 2021 3:41 pm

Thanks for the response and shared wisdom on this, as I consider how to proceed.

To be clear, $1400 included the shop hours at best I can figure $179 an hour, but I agree, it’s a lot. The parts department is being lazy or they have a ridiculous markup policy. I looked at the installation instructions posted on DENSOProducts.com and saw that it’s reasonably involved. As for 5 hours, they’re probably going “by the book” on the labor involved, everything rounded up.

Compressor and dryer, skip expansion valve, check. Union o-rings, too. I’ll look at the rebuild page you posted. You make it sound pretty easy to do the removal and replacement over a weekend, so I’ll give it a think. Late September is the perfect time for this sort of thing—the urgency is stripped right out of it.

Stopping by another shop to get a leak check after work. Maybe an estimate on doing the work. I hate to be lazy but I’m mechanically shy. Maybe this is the good break-in to the work.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby hoys » Fri Sep 24, 2021 3:59 pm

Roreri wrote:Thanks for the response and shared wisdom on this, as I consider how to proceed.

To be clear, $1400 included the shop hours at best I can figure $179 an hour, but I agree, it’s a lot. The parts department is being lazy or they have a ridiculous markup policy. I looked at the installation instructions posted on DENSOProducts.com and saw that it’s reasonably involved. As for 5 hours, they’re probably going “by the book” on the labor involved, everything rounded up.

Compressor and dryer, skip expansion valve, check. Union o-rings, too. I’ll look at the rebuild page you posted. You make it sound pretty easy to do the removal and replacement over a weekend, so I’ll give it a think. Late September is the perfect time for this sort of thing—the urgency is stripped right out of it.

Stopping by another shop to get a leak check after work. Maybe an estimate on doing the work. I hate to be lazy but I’m mechanically shy. Maybe this is the good break-in to the work.


ah, 1,400 all in isn't too bad then.

Realistically all in I had about 80-90 dollars in parts, about 150 in tools and freon to entirely DIY the job. I'm a handy guy but not an HVAC expert by any means. Amazon-China Gauge set, vac pump, and freon from Wal-Mart.

Removing the compressor is pretty easy but you might have to remove a few things to get easy access. Radiator hose, alternator cooling duct, downpipe. Not all required, but makes it easy. Inspect the compressor well to see where it's leaking from. It could just be the VC O-Ring. Here is what the leak from it looked like on mine:

Image

You can clearly see that just about everything was leaking including the case bolt seals as there is some dark stuck on dirt around them on the left side. But the majority of the leaking was clearly from the sensor.
hoys
Club Member
 
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2015 2:05 am

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Sat Sep 25, 2021 2:40 am

That is a messy compressor! Looks like a do-able job though.

Today I drove the GT-Four 10 miles to work and 10 miles home, no problem. The weather was glorious today. A/C liked to settle around 45 degrees F at the vent while driving, then slowly climbed to settle at 57 degrees F at the vent when parked.

I didn't get the leak checked at that second shop today. The appointment didn't work. That shop has decided one tech and one tech only works on the GT-Four, and he was off. They wanted me to leave it, and I wanted to take a trip in the evening. So I rescheduled.

I drove a 36 mile loop west of Alexandria on the twisties out toward Manassas. Like to have scared my son to death, as he was sitting in the left seat, facing right into oncoming traffic, much lower than he's used to sitting in the back seat of the RAV4! I had to admit that he had a point. :D Had the old mix tape rolling too:

Period Correct 90s Music.JPG


It behaved well, crossing over 1000km driven since purchase. Temps and performance were on point. Today when I got home from work, and when I got back from the longer spin out west, the intercooler was right at 204 degrees F, reflecting today's cooler temperatures.

When I got home, I decided that I'd paint the wiper arms. I used brush on flat enamel.

Before:

Wipers Before 24 Sep 2021 Small.JPG


After:

Wipers After 24 Sep 2021 Small.JPG


They look a bit patchy, but much less rusted and ratty. This will do until I work something better out.
Last edited by Roreri on Sun Sep 26, 2021 4:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Sat Sep 25, 2021 7:15 pm

Detail day:

Roreri 25 Sep 2021 (Small).JPG


I applied a little touchup paint to the scars at the top of three wheel wells, just to get some paint over the bare metal--not the right fix but the right now fix:

Touch Up 25 Sep 2021 (Small).JPG


I also put some paint at the corner of the hood where it had somehow been bent in its previous travels. The cockpit is clean! That MOMO Olympic III is very nice.

Cockpit 25 Sep 2021 (Small).JPG


Looking good. I pulled the original floor mats out and I was pleased with their condition. I'm using WeatherTech mats for now, especially as we're heading into fall and winter. I was getting it all set up for a three hour tour with my wife but she lost control of her day so I waxed it and got into the engine compartment, cleaning the engine and the underside of the hood. It'll look nice for tomorrow's trip.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby underscore » Sun Sep 26, 2021 4:14 am

I really need to do the same with my wiper blades, it's amazing how much of a different the little things makes.
★ 1991 GTFour RC ~ "Rebel Scum" ★
Build thread http://www.alltrac.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=44&t=44216
underscore
GTFour God
 
Posts: 4647
Images: 0
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 11:29 pm
Location: Kelowna, BC

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby grip-addict » Sun Sep 26, 2021 1:37 pm

Just want to pop on and say I'm enjoying the blog and you have a beautiful car. Keep it up :)
grip-addict
Club Member
 
Posts: 104
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2019 1:31 pm

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Mon Sep 27, 2021 9:58 am

Underscore, I just got some flat enamel and brushed it on. I put a cloth underneath so it didn't drip onto anything. It took about an hour. Not a difficult job--just wants doing. If I had to do it over again, I might lay some thick paper underneath, take the blades off, and rattlecan the arms with spray black. Or take the arms off and do them.

Grip-addict, thanks! I've really been enjoying this. This car has changed my life. I find myself in conversations I never woke up knowing I'd be in. And it sure has improved my commute. Lastly, it's changed my whole remembrance of a period in my life that began with a great job and a new Super Red Celica ST and ended with getting fired and handing the Celica back to the bank. Following that were the rest of the nineties, which I made more difficult than they had to be. I was foot-bound for two years and eventually ended up in a 1982 Datsun 210 hatchback--basic transportation that served well but quite the demotion. Like this one:

1982 Datsun 210.jpg


Now, that bad memory is repaired. Which is what I was hoping for. And though owning this GT-Four entails troubles and money, it's been worth it so far.

Yesterday's detail work:

Engine Compartment Before and After 25 Sep 2021.JPG


The engine compartment was pretty clean and dry when I got it. The main issues were dust and minor rust, and the normal old aluminum surface corrosion. I got after it with some Gunk engine degreaser, steel wool, and Meguiar's Ultimate Black. I'm not too sure you can see much difference but it does look better in person, and I fouled several microfiber towels in the doing.

Headlight Bracket Before and After 25 Sep 2021.JPG


The metal inside the engine compartment just aft of the headlight is especially exposed to the environment. I took a brass brush to it and then brushed on some flat enamel. It won't win any beauty contests but it sure looks better.

We took the GT-Four out to Luray and back to Alexandria along the twisties for a seven hour, 285km round trip. This was a longer range shakedown to test reliability because until now I've kept it close to home on shorter trips. The route was a very nice combination of open roads, expressways, and heavily wooded two-lane twisties. The weather was cool and clear--about as nice as you could ask for.

Which was helpful because the A/C stopped blowing cold after we made a stop at a roadside shop. It had been doing fine until then. The performance drop off I'd been noting was slow until it happened all at once. That didn't cast much of a pall over the trip, given the nice weather. The wife said that these things happen with older cars--she was mostly concerned that I'd be disappointed, or that I'd get discouraged if the expenses started mounting. She didn't have the "Oh, this thing is falling apart" angry wife attitude. That was nice. I told her that with the weather turning cooler I'm inclined to take my time getting it fixed, and told her I just want to slow the roll a little on the outgoing cash. That way if something more urgent presents I'll be better postured to correct it. She was pretty supportive, whether I wanted to get on it right away or later. So all good there for now!

:notworthy:

Performance was great. Running very nicely on 93 octane pump gas at stock boost. The suspension setup isn't the most comfortable for road touring, and I had to pay close attention to bumps and potholes lest we take a hit, but it's stiff and tight in the corners. Whoever set this up knew what they were doing, in my opinion. I don't have high performance tires on it but it held on very stably and I didn't have to widen out the turn at speed to avoid understeer in tight corners so much. It just feels so planted. On the open straightaways it doesn't have to be rapped out to get what you want in terms of acceleration and speed. It's a I4, so it does rev higher at speed than I'm used to with a V6, and it is a louder experience overall than most modern vehicles. But it passed the wife test as far as general comfort, with the proviso that it's a different sort of car and therefore a different experience as a given. Overall, it was an enjoyable time.

There's a very nice stretch of road between Sperryville and Luray, where HWY 211 crosses the Shenandoah Ridge--the kind of road the ST185 was made for.
Last edited by Roreri on Mon Sep 27, 2021 10:33 pm, edited 4 times in total.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby hoys » Mon Sep 27, 2021 5:52 pm

After seeing underhood pictures, are you planning on converting to the RC/CS style intercooler? Your hood isn't the "USDM" or "base" style with a scoop for the air to air intercooler, you might be missing a lot of performance due to the poor cooling of the charge air.
hoys
Club Member
 
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2015 2:05 am

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby Roreri » Mon Sep 27, 2021 10:10 pm

Yeah, that's part of the mystery of this ST185. The previous owner thought to install a boost controller and a air flow converter. But no AFM--I can only assume they went to a tuner and set the AFC. But the dials have since then been zeroed out. And then put the CS hood on it. Sometimes it's hard to figure out what he (or she?) was thinking.

For now, I'm satisfied, because I'm still in the honeymoon phase. As long as I'm not damaging the engine, I'm fine for now. I'm running stock boost and so far I've left the S-AFC alone.

I wonder what amount of performance I might be missing. 1% for every ten degrees is what I've read--so if I can drop it 20 degrees F then 5hp? I don't know for sure what temps the intercooler gets to during spirited driving. I have measured it upon reaching destinations. It reached 183 F when I was driving ten miles to work downhill in the morning, and 210 degrees F when I was driving ten miles home uphill in the heat of the day in early September. Today, when I got home, it measured 200 degrees F--it's getting cooler.

I've read this regarding intercoolers: https://www.alltrac.net/tuning/intercooler.html

Eventually, I would like to go to a2w if the opportunity presents--this would be another step down the road toward completing what the previous owner started (whether they knew it or not) with the CS hood and front bumper.

As mafix said here viewtopic.php?t=44276 some years ago, the ST205 a2w intercooler is best.

I guess I should place a WTB post in the appropriate place, because it can take some time to source the right parts.

https://www.alltrac.net/tuning/RCintercooler.html

Another option I'm considering is a front mount intercooler, but I like the responsiveness I have, even if it's less overall. So a high flow TMIC might be better.

As an interim measure, I'm considering an intercooler fan. ATS racing offers one. I have a cart set up to pull the trigger. That might be the way to start.
Roreri
Club Member
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:12 pm
Location: Alexandria, VA

Re: RORERI: Acquiring and Preserving a 1992 ST185H-BLMVZ

Postby grip-addict » Mon Sep 27, 2021 10:36 pm

These guys have a hose kit, heat exchanger, and pump you could buy. I think you'll be on your own for finding your core though. https://gt4-play.co.uk/shop/uprated-cha ... r-radiator
If I wasn't already invested in a setup, I would opt for a FMIC unless you are just absolutely set on doing the full rc conversion. Less moving parts is a good thing IMO. And I can say that with some authority because I lost a motor on my red alltrac because of an intercooler pump failure :(
grip-addict
Club Member
 
Posts: 104
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2019 1:31 pm

PreviousNext

Return to My Project

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests