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Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Fri Sep 02, 2022 3:20 pm

Picked up a 1990 ST185 a couple of years ago and started tearing into it in early spring 2022. The car looked well taken care of but it was abused and neglected with some shotty work done in the past. What I expected would be a quick spring project has turned into a lot more. The plan is for this to be a weekend summer cruiser with a few track/autocross runs a year.

I have an 03 T3 Tundra (Arnold) so I figured the name of this build was fitting.

Photos to come once I have time. Bear with me while I figure out uploading.

Here's a list of what I've done over the last few months (some of which will be done hopefully in the next month so I can get it back on the road briefly before winter):

- King main and rod bearings
- Rebuilt CT26 w/ garrett internals (previous owner). I had the hot side ceramic coated.
- Unknown turbo manifold (previous owner). I ceramic coated and wrapped it.
- Unknown downpipe (previous owner). I ceramic coated and wrapped it.
- xiiimotorsports power steering pulley
- xiiimotorsports spherical shifter bushings
- xiiimotorsports fan shroud kit
- xiiimotorsports crossmember bushings
- EGR delete
- Clear timing cover
- Samco radiator and intake silicone hoses
- Late model E150F from Caldina (pending rebuild this weekend)
- MR2 Heaven shifter cables (still need to modify before I can install)
- Clutchmasters FX200 clutch
- Braided stainless clutch line
- Clutchmasters FW-725 steel flywheel and ARP bolts
- Poly engine mounts

- BC Racing RM series coilovers (courtesy of underscore)
- Control arm/steering rack/sway bar poly bushings
- TwosRUs Sway bar end links
- Braided stainless brake lines
- EBC yellow stuff pads (stock calipers for the time being) w/ unknown cross-drilled rotors
- Whiteline rear swaybar (2023 install)
- Apex Flow Formed Arc-8 (17x9 ET35)
- Falken Azenis RT660 (245/40R17)
- GT4 Racing rear diff mount and subframe bushings (2023 install)
- OEM rear spherical bushings (2023 install)

- Reshimed valves
- Rewrapped the entire engine bay wiring harness with Tesa tape
- Nearly all new OEM gaskets, seals and hoses
- New belts, timing belt tensioner, and pulleys
- OEM water pump and thermostat
- Rebuilt distributor
- Spark plugs and wires
- New clutch slave
- Rebuilt front CV axles
- Replaced various sensors
- Outer tie rods
- OEM lower ball joints (on order - backordered)
- Sandblasted/painted nearly every bracket on the motor/trans

Other Noteworthy:
- Vivid Lumen Industries projector headlights (waiting to install - will report back once I've tested them)
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Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Mon Sep 05, 2022 4:31 pm

That's a lot of work for a couple of months--you're handy!

Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Tue Sep 06, 2022 6:00 pm

First time posting photos here so hopefully these work out.

Here was the car when I first picked it up. Like I said, looked to be well taken care of with what I thought were just some minor issues to address.

Started work in the spring and pulled the motor after throwing up an I-beam I picked up on marketplace. I don't have a garage but I've made my 8x12 shed work well.

A battery leak led to some fairly bad corrosion that needed to be dealt with. Cleaned everything up:

Threw together a makeshift paint booth after sandblasting way too many brackets, rigid lines, and other parts:

Wiring harness rewrapped with TESA 51036 tape after repairing a bunch of frayed wires and sketchy repairs:

Motor mostly reassembled after new bearings, reshimmed valves, new gaskets, hoses, water pump, belts, etc, etc...

Got the most out of this clutch...

Pulled old and new transmissions apart yesterday to swap over the speed sensor ring gear on the diff and inspect everything:

So many more photos and things I've done over the last few months. Definitely on the last stretch and just about ready to throw the motor/trans back in.

Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Tue Sep 06, 2022 6:07 pm

Figured I'd post a couple photos of my T3 Tundra. Rarer than my ST185 at only 200 produced. Tubbed for 35s with 4.88 gears and rear locker going in this month.


Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Wed Sep 07, 2022 11:08 am

great work!! keep it up. takes a lot of work and money to keep these cars nice lol! but once it's all done, they're easy to maintain!

keep up with the updates lol, always nice seeing how peoples projects are coming along

Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Fri Sep 09, 2022 1:22 am

That's an amazing amount of work. You're making me feel good about the price I paid for mine--I've had to do some work but nothing like what you've had to do just to get it stable. But the improvements! Nice, nice...

Re: Rise of the machine - ST185 Rebuild

Fri Sep 09, 2022 1:12 pm

Thanks! It's definitely been an undertaking but it's been a good opportunity to get to know the ins and outs of the car and hopefully limit the number of surprises in the future. I'll admit, quite a bit of it wasn't really necessary. But anything I figured I had easy access to now while everything was out and I anticipate I might want to do in the next few years, I might as well just tackle it all at once.
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