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Underbody braces, turbos and more!

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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 2:30 pm 
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the rain seemed to stop this morning so i got out to the garage at about 9:45. i've been driving with a broken exhaust ever since i did the clutch job so i needed to get that fixed. i ran up to the neighborhood exhaust shop and paid $12 to have a kid cut a 2" pipe 42 inches long and bend a couple kinks in it to clear the new sway bar and flare the ends. i cut the rotten exhaust off at the down pipe just behind the oil pan and right at the resonator. i tweaked the fit so that the pipe cleared the shifter and wouldn't rattle on the floor pan, then i welded it in place at both ends.

it's quiet now.
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since i had a good start and the car was on jacks, i moved on to the task of replacing the rear struts. again, the original oil only struts were on the car with nearly 128,000 miles on the buggy. i found a set of kyb gr2 struts and some fancy yellow polyurethane vinyl dust boots in the garage that i been keeping for a special occasion.
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the pinch bolts on the rear knuckles were just as stuck by rust as everything else has been on this car but i managed, with a 2 foot long pipe as a persuader, to get them off. i had to pound the old struts out of their bottom mounts. i tore down the old strut assemblies and recovered all the hardware which i cleaned up on the wire wheel and coated with good old eastwood company's rust encapsulator.
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while i waited for the paint to dry i cleaned up the rear knuckles a little bit and wiped about 21 years of road dust off the upper strut tunnel's top in the trunk. i re-assembled the rear strut assemblies using cut down bump stops. i trimmed up the tops of the dust boots and zip tied them in place. here they are as ready to install assemblies.
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it's a little different installing gas over oil struts as the piston rods extend all the way out by themselves if they are restrained. you have to hold your mouth just right and know all of the magic four letter words to make them go back on. working alone, i use a little floor jack to steady things while i wrestle with the top mounts. this is about the extension when the tires are on the ground. you can't even see the fancy boots. i really don't use them for appearance. they completely seal the piston rod from top to bottom and that helps to keep them in good shape longer.
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i let the jack down and here's the strut at full extension.
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there really wasn't much in the way of hardware to the rear struts but even though the factory nutz on the top mounts looked like new, i replaced them with my trademark a2 stainless. it's a shame that once the rubbers and trim covers are installed nobody will ever see them.
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it's coming down to the wire. i can't really do a lot more for the car until i start welding on the chassis. the biggest trim project i have for it is to replace the top but i want a brushed german sailcloth top with a zippered rear window that will push $500 and i don't have that kind of money right now. as it sits this minute, the car is running well and isn't horrible looking. the interior is tidy and clean, the radio is very nice, and i seem to be getting 50.1 mpg with it as a daily driven commuter car.

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PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 4:17 pm 
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man! talk about your tough crowd!

is this thing on? can i get an amen? comments from the peanut gallery? :huh:

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PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 7:05 pm 
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Good job richard!

=)

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PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 8:41 pm 
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t3 ragtop wrote:
man! talk about your tough crowd!

is this thing on? can i get an amen? comments from the peanut gallery? :huh:

.
.
you had me at rusto-rod GEEEZE.!
.
,
I like it.
You do good work.
Here a little diddy how I,m feel about the "Proj"
.
.
.
Image
.
.
.When I'm on teamswift the wife ask me what I,m doing?
I tell her I looking at porn
................................................"Hooptie Porn"
.........................................................................................YA BABY.!
.
.....jv&s
.
.
.
.

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.

t3 ragtop wrote:
the 3 banger isn't at all a "grenade." it's a tough little son of a bitch doing a big job. respect it.
suprf1y wrote:
I didn't save anything.Vehicles are to me, like little boys are to Tommy.Toys to be abused for my own personal pleasure.
G-Whiz wrote:
I don't let just anyone work on my cars. Like the saying goes, "You don't let another man mess with your wife, so why would you let him mess with your car".


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 11:18 am 
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You're making awesome progress! :D

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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 1:45 pm 
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Excellant job there Richard. I wish that I had just 1/4 of your ambition when it comes to fixing up these cars. I guess that I just have too many hobbies.


Ken....


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 12:35 am 
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That is looking very sharp, I will have to get to that stage of neatness.. after I finishing assembling mine. T3 (Richard) that is a very clean job you are doing with that car.. it is looking very sharp. Are you keeping this one as a 3 cylinder or swapping sometime in the future to something different?

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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 5:06 am 
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right now i'm prepping the chassis while i drive the car, daily, as a commuter. the n/a 3 banger is doing great, getting superb mileage but if the chassis rust repairs turn out solid i will drop the lil' black monster turbo3 into this car for 2013. it'll take me that long to get the engine finished and the megasquirt system ready.

i plan on starting the rust repairs on the rockers and front floor pan in the next couple of weeks. up on the jack stands on friday nights and back on the ground on sunday for the next week's commute. working on it 15 - 20 hours per weekend i might have it done in 4 or 5 weeks.

the car will get side skirts, stereo amps and subs, and a few other tricks before it's done.

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 4:50 pm 
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Very nice, competent work.
Congratulations.

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PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2012 9:01 pm 
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thanks for the encouragement. :D

today i got my new 3 tech performance underdrive pulley in the mail so i hauled the accessory drive bits off the car and replaced it all with 4 rib belt components. while i had things apart i replaced the timing cover hardware with a2 stainless allen heads and an acorn nut that matches the valve cover's nuts.
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i found some red caps to fit the stem nut on the front struts. those will seal out any crap that would rust the stems.
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i have a multiple layer steel exhaust manifold gasket and a set of a2 stainless steel studs and flange nuts to replace the rusted crap. the stock hardware was a living bitch to get off. one of the long bolts snapped off in the head so i worked until dark to drill it for an easy-out. i ran out of light so i'll pick up on that work tomorrow, get the broken bolt out, and install the stainless hardware.
Image

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My YouTube Channel
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SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2012 12:40 pm 
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i will never have to fight with rusted exhaust manifold bolts again on this jalopy.
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My YouTube Channel
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SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 4:44 pm 
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i want to take a minute in this project thread to say that mike cove sent me one of his new run of underdrive pulleys drilled to fit my 4 hole crank. my "test" drive was this morning's commute and the return trip this afternoon.

all other things being equal and the only change being made over the weekend that would affect performance, changing out the big honkin' accessory pulley for the aluminum pulley was transformative for the already nice running n/a g10.

my throttle response was already good after swapping to a 4 banger flywheel and clutch and making the changes to the air filter and exhaust, but just bolting on the light weight pulley set the hamsters loose!
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this is quite possibly the smoothest running normally aspirated g10 i have ever owned (that i didn't painstakingly assemble with my own hands.)

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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My YouTube Channel
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SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 10:18 pm 
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Those hamsters must be squeeling with delight !!!


Ken.....


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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 2:31 am 
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Richard you are the King! :worship:

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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 8:19 am 
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Is the 1.3L flywheel lighter?

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 4:05 pm 
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the flywheel i used was from a dohc 16v engine. it's 3 pounds lighter than a g10 flywheel and the clutch disc and friction surfaces are about and inch bigger.

i take a g13 flywheel to my machinist and he shaves them down to 9.5 pounds which makes them about 5 pounds lighter than a g10 flywheel.

i had a niggling problem yesterday which slowed me down on much of any project work. there was a dealer installed pseudo-security device on the car from when i was new that i had just unscrewed and tucked up by the steering column. i came out in the morning to run across the city to get a part for my zero turn mower and the car wouldn't start.

i took a couple of minutes to clean the spade lug connector on the starter solenoid and the female end of the connector on the control wire. no luck. i'd turn the key and there wasn't even a click.

i rattled around in the garage and found my remote starter button, connected one end to the + battery post and the other clip on the solenoid's terminal. when i hit the button, the starter rolled the engine over which proved the starter wasn't the problem. i took off on my errand with the remote starter button zip tied under the hood. i used it several times to start the car. no problems and i got the mower part and fueled up on my way back.

the little bug is really great on the highway. it ran smoothly at 65 mph at around 3200 rpm, like a swiss watch. when i filled up after running a little over 400 miles, i calculated it's fuel use at 50.6 mpg. i'm not really driving like i'm trying to conserve fuel, either. the engine sees 4500 rpm shifts while i'm on highway ramps trying to merge.

after it cooled off a little bit that evening i went back to the car and started to go through my mental troubleshooting list. when i got down to the key switch i saw the splice connection for that security crap on the wire coming from the big switch, cut the dealer crap off and joined the wire back together using a crimp type heat shrink butt splice connector.

bingo, that was the problem. the key switch works fine now.

today i took off the hood bra to check for rust. the front lip of the hood was surprisingly clean and i only buzzed up the drain holes at the front and the area around the loop for the latch. those took just a little spritz of the rust encapsulator. i pulled the passenger side seat out so i'd have a little room to wash down the the interior panels. while i had the seat on the bench i gave the ends of the rails a little massage with a stiff wire brush to clean up a bit of beginning rust and gave them a squirt of the rust encapsulator.

after i got done wiping down the interior and spraying it with son of a gun i bolted the seat back in using stainless steel replacement hardware.

i'm itching to get to the rust repair on the rockers and floor pan. i'm even more anxious to replace the top. i haven't put it down yet because i'm afraid that the rear window will just disintegrate if i bend it.

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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My YouTube Channel
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SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 9:49 pm 
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Who cares if the rear window desingrates, if it rains you can just put it
in the gar......nevermind..... :D


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 11:06 pm 
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66 replies, over 1,000 views and 3 pages of thread...guess I'll take a stab at the Wizard of Columbus. :-P

Well t3 ragtop, it looks like you've got a very conservative driving technique and that 50 mpg is certainly something to consider. It might be to your advantage to let someone have it for a decent profit and pick a few rust free shells up out this way for later projects. People will pay a pretty penny for a convertible which gets 50 mpg in that condition, leaving you ample funds to fly out and drive a couple home.

I like the idea that you use the car during the week and 'fix' it on the weekend.
It shows the rest of the crowd - members and 'lurkers' alike - that if you plan carefully, you can restore a daily driver while using it and sacrifice very little in the way of creature comforts.
Sound system, suspension, brakes, body, chassis, fuel, fan, flywheel, clutch, pulley and power plant upgrades all seem to be coming along nicely with only one item missing. The overall presentation of your vehicle is most pleasing, and I'll bet it is a joy to drive and to see going down the road!
:lol:

Between you and Marsbar, I'm not sure who is the more rust conscious.
I have been following this thread since day one, and seeing the time and care you've invested, it only seems natural you should be rewarded for your efforts. Perhaps this vehicle will last 10 years or more before rust finally claims it? I hope it lasts a long, long time.

Usually, it is the wife who has the better car, but in your case, I wonder if you've created something 'on par' with the steed the Mrs. drives. She probably wouldn't mind getting behind the wheel and spinning off to the market in it, eh?

You get high marks from this part of the World, and we'll continue to check this thread as you update it.
We can learn a thing or two from you! :wink: :wink: :wink:

I make this post, not as an 'arm chair mechanic' but as someone who is about to roll up his sleeves and work on an almost identical automobile, with updates coming in the appropriate threads.

Best regards.

(...almost forgot: does it have Recaro seats?)

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 5:02 am 
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thanks phil.

nope, no recaros.........yet.

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PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 6:26 pm 
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i've started a new job (same place, different position) so i've been busy with learning the new ropes. i haven't gotten much done with the red resto-rod vert except to drive it every day.

late yesterday i got a package from ralph, top down@-40, with some bits and pieces for the car. he sent me a pair of the swift rear wheel splash guards to keep mud and crap from blowing into the rear bumper and a set of red power mirrors.
Image

i had the camera in my hand so i snapped a pic of the refinished seat tracks and stainless mounting hardware.
Image

the rear splash guards are held on by a plastic push pin located on the inner fender and 2 screws through the rear bumper cover. of course i used stainless hardware.
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they are no big deal but they really do help keep road crap from accumulating on the inside of the rear bumper. they also help keep wind from catching the bumper like a parachute. maybe most importantly, they keep the muffler and fuel filler pipe from getting muddy and rusting.

the metro mirrors never really excited me. i know that the hypermiler guys like the tiny mirrors, remove the passenger's side mirror, etc. that ain't my bag, baby. the gt flag style mirrors are bigger so you can actually see what's behind you and they are electrically operated.

old metro "fixed" mirror.
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new gt retractable power mirrors.
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Image
Image

i found the wiring harness for the mirror controls but i'll need to find a mk2 switch for the dash before i can wire them up. all i could find in the garage was a new old stock mk3 mirror control switch. the fitment to the dash and the wiring connector are different on that from the mk2 part.

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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My Cardomain Page -Ol' Blue
My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 12:19 am 
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Those mirrors look sweet. Plus, I bet they won't break off twice a year like the cheapie non folding ones.

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PostPosted: Sat May 26, 2012 3:41 pm 
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i've been working overtime on my job, 4 or 8 hours on weekdays and 4 to 12 hours on weekends which has left me very little project time.

i was mounting these chromed billet aluminum window cranks today when i got called in on emergency overtime. i just barely got them installed and a pic snapped and i was off and running in the car.
Image

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

My Turbo3 Project
My Cardomain Page -Ol' Blue
My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 4:52 pm 
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my new job is keeping me busy so i really hadn't spent much time working on the project car. i drive it every day though, and it is a aprticularly good daily driver. my last tank of gas averaged 50.6 mpg on 92 octane and the car is really well behaved.

after i got off work yesterday i stopped by the pick and pull and liberated the rear sway bar from a 97 g13 2 door and installed that today.
Image

i had a set of new end links and polyurethane cushions set aside for this task.
Image

i aslo found these in a drawer in the garage.
Image
Image

i don't know that i'll leave the fender flares polished. i'm thinking that i'll paint them red for a more monochrome red look.

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 5:36 pm 
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ya paint them because you know :ez_pimp:

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 8:42 pm 
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top down@-40 wrote:
ya paint them because you know :ez_pimp:


and the peanut gallery prevails. :lol:

people have asked me why i used the fender flares. they aren't really big, but they do add some muscle and about 1/2" to the fender which changes the appearance pretty nicely. this work is ahead of mounting the gt side skirts which tie right into the flares' contours. they will look cool when the bodywork is completed.

painting polished stainless steel doesn't work very well so i used $22 worth of scotch 'scotchprint' vinyl wrap in a nearly perfect color match to do the monochromatic thing that got the "popular" vote.
Image
Image

once again, from the bottom of a pile in the garage i dug up a lightly used set of vert front rotors that are drilled and slotted. i bought the last pair of new wagner brake calipers for a vert from rockauto's stock. i cleaned up the rotors and a set of caliper yokes and i'll hang the new parts pretty soon. there's nothing wrong with the brake on the car right now, though, so my only reason for doing it will be to have cool new bling. :ez_pimp:
Image

i painted the rotors and yokes with the eastwood company rust encapsulator to get a jump on the cast steel rust. what do you guys say about doing the calipers in bright silver?

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1991 Blue Geo Metro Convertible highly modified 1.0L Turbo3 5 spd. - 1991 Red Geo Metro Convertible customized with a Twincam 5 spd. - 1992 White Suzuki Swift GT

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My Cardomain Page -Ol' Blue
My YouTube Channel
My Photo Gallery
SAAB Sonett II


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