My SW20 - Dandism-life

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Swampy
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My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Sat May 16, 2015 6:45 pm

Having learnt to drive in automatic but never got round to sitting my restricted, I had sold my little car and been carless for a while. Fortunately, I had been planning to purchase a new vehicle - in manual - a questionable decision perhaps because I had given up learning manual as I found it too difficult a long time ago. But then again the benefits of manual had won me over.. not only will it allow me to legally drive all cars but it will also mean full enjoyment from driving and potentially participating in track days with the more efficient transmission. So my search begun, Initially I wanted something real cool and from the 80s, AW11/Mercedes-Benz 190E etc. but I also wanted something rear-wheel drive, decent power, and fun! an N/A MX-5, or even a compromise on the RWD, a Celica or Integra/Prelude. I never really considered an SW20, due to it being a bit too modern looking, but so far, I don't regret it! I have discovered Dandism!

A previous owner owned it for 14 years, and was related/friends with a Toyota mechanic so it has been kept in good nick for most of its life.

I literally have no mechanical experience, but I do have a little bit of experience in cleaning vehicles inside and out. It's something I expect to be in for a long time, I want to get my restricted and learn this vehicle, and depending on how much rust/filler I find I will spend quite a bit of money on it, but of course will want to DIY most of it.

Fairly clean body, yet to do a full proper check but from what I've seen, no dents, just a fair bit of clearcoat fading round the edges and quite a few stone chips and scratches, especially around the door handles which kinda bugs me. Did a quick inspection for rust in the frunk beneath the spare wheel, and water etc, I bought this car in the pouring rain - would advise anyone not to do so because it places a lot of pressure upon you.

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non-TRD gear stick I believe.

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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Sat May 16, 2015 7:06 pm

Today I discovered that my battery had gone kaput.. what a bloody shame. When I did buy it, there was a bit of white smoke coming from the exhaust. I believe it is probably the guy who sold it to me just overfilling it with oil (my mechanical experience is limited to changing batteries and maintaining the lawn mower :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :lol: :lol: fyi) And after replacing the battery and successfully starting it up (yay it worked) I did notice a bit of white smoke coming from the left side (left exhaust pipe perhaps, or just wind blowing it that way?). I sincerely hope it isn't the head gasket as I did some brief research before buying and checked the exhaust for misfiring, leaks and smoke but not coolant or fluids - again, strong rain. Forgot to ask about cambelt change too - rain. :(

I replaced the yucky 400 something SCA battery with a Century 330 one. Much better quality, and to be honest, to go cheap on the battery is just bonkers. Get that blasphemy outta my car! 3 year warranty too for peace of mind.. but then again, it was my fault as I had not figured out how to use the central locking and immobiliser, and must've left some lights on even though I do check.

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Got rid of the water that was in the frunk, but will get rid of the debris and carry out a full degrease soon!
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This battery hasn't been properly secured - I'll need to follow up on that. D'oh! I think I should've installed the securing thing BEFORE the battery.. eff.
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I may also consider ripping out the plastic in the frunk which has a lot of missing screws or studs whatever those plastic fasteners are called and leaving painted or cover with black carbon fibre wrap which would look sweet - another member's build who's name I cannot remember sorry has done a marvellous job with this wrapping product and think it'd really update the look. Alot of plastic on this car is loose and needs to be secured or ripped out, including but not limited to the frunk opener, and the frunk cover.

I really want this car to be reliable and look part-90s-JDM-style part-poor mans Ferrari, while staying true to the Toyota ethos.. lol.. I come from a background in 2002+ cars, everything before 2002 was much older but I spent more time in the newer cars so want mine to be clean and a bit modern "looked-after". Rims will be something close to old school Borbet Porsche 5 spoke rims, Ferrari 355 stock, or something different. I also would like to paint my side stripes to match the body.

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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Sat May 16, 2015 7:14 pm

Forgot to mention that the Century battery weighs less than the SCA one. Whether that is from being less powerful or not, I don't know, but it sure does save maybe 5kg at the most.

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Mr Shiny » Sat May 16, 2015 8:07 pm

Swampy wrote:may also consider ripping out the plastic in the frunk which has a lot of missing screws or studs whatever those plastic fasteners are called.

I have just recently replaced all of the fasteners in mine with two packets of clips from Mitre10.
“If you think the professionals are expensive, you should see what the amateurs can cost you.”
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JasonFriday13
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby JasonFriday13 » Sun May 17, 2015 2:06 pm

Swampy wrote:Today I discovered that my battery had gone kaput.. what a bloody shame. When I did buy it, there was a bit of white smoke coming from the exhaust. I believe it is probably the guy who sold it to me just overfilling it with oil (my mechanical experience is limited to changing batteries and maintaining the lawn mower :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :lol: :lol: fyi) And after replacing the battery and successfully starting it up (yay it worked) I did notice a bit of white smoke coming from the left side (left exhaust pipe perhaps, or just wind blowing it that way?). I sincerely hope it isn't the head gasket as I did some brief research before buying and checked the exhaust for misfiring, leaks and smoke but not coolant or fluids - again, strong rain. Forgot to ask about cambelt change too - rain. :(

White smoke is normal when starting a cold engine, that's just the moisture in the exhaust system evaporating from the heat. If you are getting white smoke once the engine is up to temp, it could be a head gasket, so keep checking the coolant level by taking the radiator cap off (which isn't on the radiator, it's in the engine bay). If your losing coolant, it's most likely a blown head gasket.

Basic guide to smoke colours:

White = water.
Blue = oil.
Black = fuel.

Swampy wrote:I replaced the yucky 400 something SCA battery with a Century 330 one. Much better quality, and to be honest, to go cheap on the battery is just bonkers. Get that blasphemy outta my car! 3 year warranty too for peace of mind.. but then again, it was my fault as I had not figured out how to use the central locking and immobiliser, and must've left some lights on even though I do check.

I think the standard size in relation to cranking amps is 530 CCA. My little Toyota hatch takes a 430 CCA size as stock. But yeah, interior lights can drain a battery if left on.
Jason Ross, current cars:
Project: 1990 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, 1992+ brake swap, 1992+ subframe swap, 1996 Celica turbo engine swap, 1996 MR2 LSD gearbox swap, Caldina Turbo coil-on-plug ignition, Link G4 Storm, 161kw @ 10psi.
Daily: 1997 Toyota Tercel 3dr hatch, petrol 4sp.
Sold: 1991 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car
Scrapped: 1992 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, donor
Scrapped: 1989 SW20, GT turbo
Sold: 1987 AW11, Supercharged 5sp

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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Sun May 17, 2015 6:00 pm

Cheers guys,

I will definitely monitor my coolant levels and also preventive-maintenance change the cambelt after I get it all clean and degreased and nice.. and can afford to of course. Good advice thanks :D

Met with David today which was cool, who took me in a nearby car park and gave me an introduction to driving my new car, as well as gave me a sweet introduction to the club and owning an SW20, as well as showing his cool (and shiny) MR2! :mrgreen:

...but my car/me introduced him to my battery problems! Sorry Dave! I left my windows down trying to be cool and locked the windows, and the car died but somehow, came back on 10min later and ran sweet after that. It may be the battery being small, my crappy alarm, or the sounds.

It was productive though, and to experience the "back in the seats" feeling from the rear wheel drive - mid engine layout was cool!

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby DravidDavid » Sun May 17, 2015 8:43 pm

Swampy wrote:Cheers guys,

I will definitely monitor my coolant levels and also preventive-maintenance change the cambelt after I get it all clean and degreased and nice.. and can afford to of course. Good advice thanks :D

Met with David today which was cool, who took me in a nearby car park and gave me an introduction to driving my new car, as well as gave me a sweet introduction to the club and owning an SW20, as well as showing his cool (and shiny) MR2! :mrgreen:

...but my car/me introduced him to my battery problems! Sorry Dave! I left my windows down trying to be cool and locked the windows, and the car died but somehow, came back on 10min later and ran sweet after that. It may be the battery being small, my crappy alarm, or the sounds.

It was productive though, and to experience the "back in the seats" feeling from the rear wheel drive - mid engine layout was cool!

Most welcome :)

As per our conversation this afternoon, you might want to look at removing the alarm and immobilizer, keeping your MR2 stock and looking in to a kill-switch instead. There is no weird and wonderful starting sequence to start your car and you've got the same security as an immobilizer. Unless of course the thief finds your kill switch, haha :)

Your car's paint is in much better condition than mine. I've got no doubt it will come up just as good if not better if given the Mr.Shiny treatment.

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Mr Shiny » Mon May 18, 2015 12:09 am

Swampy wrote: to experience the "back in the seats" feeling from the rear wheel drive - mid engine layout was cool!

I should take James for a ride in mine than ay David? Haha! Then once it's back to full health, James might one day be lucky enough to get a ride with Charlie in the Red Beastie :twisted: Something I haven't experienced yet. But I have made it shiny :mrgreen:
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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Mon May 18, 2015 12:14 am

Mr Shiny wrote:I should take James for a ride in mine than ay David? Haha! Then once it's back to full health, James might one day be lucky enough to get a ride with Charlie in the Red Beastie :twisted: Something I haven't experienced yet. But I have made it shiny :mrgreen:


It really is awesome. And you don't need heated seats either, 'cos of that engine :)

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby JasonFriday13 » Mon May 18, 2015 5:35 pm

Swampy wrote:I will definitely monitor my coolant levels and also preventive-maintenance change the cambelt after I get it all clean and degreased and nice.. and can afford to of course. Good advice thanks :D

First off, just check the coolant level for now. If your engine has problems, don't do any maintenance to it until you know what the problem is and how to fix it. The basic guideline is: fix problems first, do maintenance later. This also saves money in the long run.
Jason Ross, current cars:
Project: 1990 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, 1992+ brake swap, 1992+ subframe swap, 1996 Celica turbo engine swap, 1996 MR2 LSD gearbox swap, Caldina Turbo coil-on-plug ignition, Link G4 Storm, 161kw @ 10psi.
Daily: 1997 Toyota Tercel 3dr hatch, petrol 4sp.
Sold: 1991 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car
Scrapped: 1992 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, donor
Scrapped: 1989 SW20, GT turbo
Sold: 1987 AW11, Supercharged 5sp

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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Mon May 18, 2015 5:52 pm

JasonFriday13 wrote:First off, just check the coolant level for now. If your engine has problems, don't do any maintenance to it until you know what the problem is and how to fix it. The basic guideline is: fix problems first, do maintenance later. This also saves money in the long run.


I'll definitely keep that in mind.. first challenge is identifying problems :D

David suggested using 98 octane fuel because 91 causing small problems in the back.. I'll do that, but first got to get WOF this week and maybe ask WOF guy to look at my alternator/starter motor/alarm, something is really causing problems as it will start two-three times and then stop. Interestingly enough after a while indicators started flashing but once I managed to stop that the car would start fine. It probably is my alarm and crappy head unit and CD changer which all need to be removed :evil: if I was a member of the AA, they could diagnose the problem with their little computer thingys.. I hope the wof guy has one!

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby DravidDavid » Mon May 18, 2015 6:14 pm

Swampy wrote:
JasonFriday13 wrote:First off, just check the coolant level for now. If your engine has problems, don't do any maintenance to it until you know what the problem is and how to fix it. The basic guideline is: fix problems first, do maintenance later. This also saves money in the long run.


I'll definitely keep that in mind.. first challenge is identifying problems :D

David suggested using 98 octane fuel because 91 causing small problems in the back.. I'll do that, but first got to get WOF this week and maybe ask WOF guy to look at my alternator/starter motor/alarm, something is really causing problems as it will start two-three times and then stop. Interestingly enough after a while indicators started flashing but once I managed to stop that the car would start fine. It probably is my alarm and crappy head unit and CD changer which all need to be removed :evil: if I was a member of the AA, they could diagnose the problem with their little computer thingys.. I hope the wof guy has one!

Yea, under low acceleration it sounds as if there is some serious detonation going on. I've been told in the past it could be a whole lot of things, but the place to start is higher octane fuel, spark plugs and replacing the cam-belt. On my corolla, the cam belt was stretching which caused the timing to go off under load. It's an expensive job and should be last on the list though. Unless the sticker says it needs doing now.

It was quite an eye-opener driving this car. It felt a lot better low down and it's handling felt far more direct over my gen 2. It was also a lot more cushy, yet it felt more like a proper sports car. My turbo does my back in after two or more hours of driving! :roll:

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby JasonFriday13 » Mon May 18, 2015 6:33 pm

DravidDavid wrote:Yea, under low acceleration it sounds as if there is some serious detonation going on. I've been told in the past it could be a whole lot of things, but the place to start is higher octane fuel, spark plugs and replacing the cam-belt. On my corolla, the cam belt was stretching which caused the timing to go off under load. It's an expensive job and should be last on the list though. Unless the sticker says it needs doing now.

Also check the timing with a timing light. When I bought a gen 3 NA engine for my project several years ago, I found that the timing was 5 degrees advanced from where it should be.
Jason Ross, current cars:
Project: 1990 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, 1992+ brake swap, 1992+ subframe swap, 1996 Celica turbo engine swap, 1996 MR2 LSD gearbox swap, Caldina Turbo coil-on-plug ignition, Link G4 Storm, 161kw @ 10psi.
Daily: 1997 Toyota Tercel 3dr hatch, petrol 4sp.
Sold: 1991 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car
Scrapped: 1992 SW20, G-Limited, ex EssDub car, donor
Scrapped: 1989 SW20, GT turbo
Sold: 1987 AW11, Supercharged 5sp

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Swampy
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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Swampy » Mon May 18, 2015 6:44 pm

I don't know how to edit or delete posts, apologies... before I talk about any alternator issues, I'll get my battery properly connected. The positive connection is maybe 50% on, because the bolt holding the rest of it won't budge. I have to address that first. Get it as tight as the negative connection and then think about taking care of the alarm.

[quote=DravidDavid]
It was quite an eye-opener driving this car. It felt a lot better low down and it's handling felt far more direct over my gen 2. It was also a lot more cushy, yet it felt more like a proper sports car. My turbo does my back in after two or more hours of driving! :roll:[/quote]

I'll trade my direct handling for your meatier clutch? :mrgreen:

[quote=JasonFriday13]
Also check the timing with a timing light. When I bought a gen 3 NA engine for my project several years ago, I found that the timing was 5 degrees advanced from where it should be.[/quote]

One day I will meet you Jason, may you check my timing?

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Re: My SW20 - Dandism-life

Postby Benckj » Tue May 19, 2015 9:56 am

[quoteI don't know how to edit or delete posts, apologies... ][/quote] You get edit, search and sponsor discounts when you become a club member. There are also other benifits to supporting the club which help us keep our cars on the road.

A common fault with battery drain is the door harness fault. After you get the basics done like battery clamps and doggy HU & alarm wiring I'd look into the testing and repair of broken wires in the loom. Often faulty central locking & window function wires cause a paristic load on the circuit. Here is some fun reading when you get a chance.

http://stephenmason.com/cars/mr2doorwire.html
Jim Benck
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98 rev 5 GT- all the mods