mk2tmr2's build

171468 Views 1140 Replies 185 Participants Last post by  Bryan
Some of you guys may have seen my non-roadster build thread stating that I was going to convert my daily driver (2003 Lex GS300) into a toy by way of swapping in a JDM Aristo 2JZ-GTE, single turbo, 500whp, suspension, etc.

Scrap that.

I just put a deposit down to hold my next project and it is another roadster. And I won't be starting from scratch on this one. It's already a spectacular example and what's been done has been done right. I'll be taking it, babying it and putting my spin on it.

It will be phat.

That is all. (for now)


Got the car home from Tampa, FL to Dallas, TX

Got the '95M seats recovered in '93LE red and installed

Installed the Nakamae carpeted center console

XIDA installation woes

Got my M2 1028 steering wheel and Runabout Mirrors

Teaser pics of interior with M2/Revlimiter/Nakamae goodies and exterior with custom Eunos stripes and other misc. hotness

Great pics from a photo shoot with Justin (tsxser)

The last bit of "Miata" is gone from the car. All of the branding is now "Eunos Roadster".

Installed Bellof low-pro headlights and a unique "EUNOS" badge on the rear. - GOOD pics of the Bellof Lights here.

Awesome, cheap eBay aluminum radiator install. Took a chance and it paid off. This thing has been great.

Scored some legit wheels off Yahoo! Japan auctions.

Takes 1 and 2 on the SSR Watanabe RS-8's. All Bronze. Follow for a page or 2 to see all pics.

Final take on the SSR Wats. Bronze center, chrome lips. Also...Rooster goes to Albuquerque to hang out with Sharka and Flipper.

Rooster gets a feature

Road trip blogs and route coverage. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

The work begins on a built '99 head swap.
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/\ +1 See you gays there!
If my coilovers are in my hands and on the car by May 21st I will try to come out to Propwash. I wanted to go last year but couldn't.
No pics yet because it's miserably cold and raining and also my camera battery is flat. But I did manage to mount the R-package front and rear lips yesterday. Very straightforward installation. The rear bumper even has marks for where to drill the holes. Though, I found that they were slightly off and made sure to measure twice, drill once for my rear lip. The little side piece on the passenger side of the exhaust cut out needs to be tweaked a bit to sit flush. I'll get to that once I've got the seats done.

The POR-15 I ordered should be arriving today. So I'll be able to tackle the rusty seat pans with vigor tonight. The seat backs and headrests are all done - and look great. I'm hoping to finish up the seat bottoms tomorrow evening and then re-assemble the seats and get them back in the car on Wednesday. Then I may take a few pics. Weather will be nice.
POR-15! Sweet. Take lots of pix of the painting process.
Yeah. Thanks for the reco :)
Well. I began the POR-15 process tonight. It's a pretty simple 3-step process.

Before starting the process you want to basically remove any huge chunks of rust and any other foreign substances that are stuck onto the metal you'll be painting. For me that just required taking a flat head screw driver and scraping off some chunks of seat foam that had bonded to the rusty surface. If this were a part that would actually be visible in the car (like, say, a rusty corner of the engine bay due to a leaky brake master cylinder) I would probably have taken a wire brush to it in order to really get as much coarse rust scale off as I possibly could. But I didn't because this is not a part that will ever be seen and because I read that POR-15 sticks better the more rusty the surface is.

So once all the "foreign substance" is gone, it's time to crack open the first bottle in the POR-15 package. It's a degreaser that you coat the parts in to...well...degrease them. I would have preferred a spray bottle, but I didn't have one handy so I just poured it on. I let it sit for about 2 minutes and then hosed it off per the directions. After letting them thoroughly dry under a box fan for about an hour, this is what they looked like:

Pretty gross, right?

The next step is to etch the metal with the second product. This product gets brushed on with a foam brush (included in the kit). For our method it said to let it soak for 10-20 minutes before rinsing it off with water. I was close to the 20 minute mark. It's pretty amazing to watch this stuff work. I don't know exactly what the chemical reaction is - but the rust turns black and actually quite a bit of it dissolves in the liquid. According to the instructions if you bathe the part in this stuff for 30 minutes or more it can completely remove rust. I believe it.

Here's what it looked like after my application:

Another 45 minutes under the box fan to dry the pans off and I was ready to paint with the actual POR-15 product. (FYI - "POR" stands for "Paint Over Rust"...if that wasn't already obvious)

This was very undramatic - apart from the effect of the paint fumes. Definitely do this in a well-ventilated area. Application is via brush (included in the kit). The paint self-levels very quickly and smoothly. As you can see in the photo below - had I taken the time to actually wire brush these pans they probably would have ended up with an all-over smooth, shiny finish. As it is - I'm just happy they won't leave ugly brown rust stains on my nice red 93LE carpet when I'm done.

Photo below is after one coat of POR-15 - still slightly tacky.

What's most impressive is that this photo was shot on 1/4 sec shutter speed, hand-held after inhaling all those paint fumes.

One thing to note: this stuff takes FOR. EV. ER. to dry. I had wanted to do the top and bottom of both pans tonight but I'm going to have to get up early tomorrow to do the other side of the pans. They're still too wet to flip over and they've been sitting for about an hour and a half under a fan (on low). Granted - it's about 50 degrees out right now so that's probably not helping.

The instructions say to do 2 coats. If I have enough paint left over I may do a second coat on the bottoms of the pans. No sense in doing 2 coats on the pan tops because they'll be covered in foam and leather, in the end.

If you're reading this and so inclined, you can actually sand, prime and topcoat POR-15. So if you're restoring a rusty part of your car that people will see, this should make for a good stop-rust solution that you can cover with a spectator-friendly finish.
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attention to detail. i like where this is going.
Interesting. Is it just me, or is the seat pan of the nearest unit a little dented?
Interesting. Is it just me, or is the seat pan of the nearest unit a little dented?
It looks that way in the photos. Especially with the black paint. It's not dented, tho. Both seats have the same contour.
Totally awesome! You can thank Lotus Talk for that product recommendation. That's where I learned about it.

It almost makes me wish there was some rust on my car.
Totally awesome! You can thank Lotus Talk for that product recommendation. That's where I learned about it.

It almost makes me wish there was some rust on my car.
If you want to come to Ohio, I've got some holes in my trunk you can hit with it :lol:
For both Randy and Steve, I've used POR-15 on a number of projects. It's needed when you do a lot of pre-war cars. But I've switched to Rust Bullet. It's not as noxious, is easier to apply, and doesn't degrade as bad when exposed to UV light.
Noted. This stuff was a bit of a PITA. I think it was a great solution and will likely outlast the usable life of the seats. But easier is better as long as the effectiveness is equal.
It almost makes me wish there was some rust on my car.
My dad's blazer has plenty of rust you can practice on and it's just across town. ;)
Great project car, nice to see that it stayed in cr and it will be going strong.
On the seat rebuild, line the seat pans with cloth before putting the foam back in them. That way you won't perpetually be cleaning up little bits of foam that get grated off the pads by the edges of the pan.
On the seat rebuild, line the seat pans with cloth before putting the foam back in them. That way you won't perpetually be cleaning up little bits of foam that get grated off the pads by the edges of the pan.
I love this guy! Attention to detail :cool:
^^ Yeah...wish I would have read that prior to reassembling the seats last night!

Pardon the cameraphone, gas station pic. I was so excited I had to drive the car to work today. Parked it all lonely-like on the 4th floor of the parking garage.

Seats and R-package lips are done. Next up is the exhaust. Probably tackle that this weekend. With any luck my suspension will arrive sometime this month and I can do that next :-\

EDIT: I should probably mention my thoughts on the covers. A while back I had the privilege of doing this exact same process on the seats in my 1991 MR2 Turbo using Classic Soft Trim covers. For one thing - the CST leather kit was less than 1/2 the cost of the kit. And the former came with door card inserts. It was also custom colors (black with grey inserts). Like the kit I just finished installing, it was 100% leather with no vinyl panels.

I think the quality of both kits is comparable. I experienced a little bit more wrinkling/tufting from the kit. I would say it fits 90% as well as the CST kit did on my MR2. For twice the price I was mildly disappointed.

To be fair:

A) I got the CST kit on a group buy and it was fairly heavily discounted.
B) The '95M seats are rare, in the grand scheme of things, and the fact that ANY aftermarket company has taken the time to develop a kit to recover them is pretty impressive.
C) I can't believe how closely the red matches the '93LE interior. It's spot on. It would have been really easy for it to be off by a few shades or have a slightly different hue. I can't say enough how excellent it matches. I was extraordinarily happy about this.

Also - for anyone in the future looking to do this project - SKIP THE HOG RINGS. I wrestled with those things so much trying to use them. Maybe I didn't have the proper gauge...maybe my hog ring pliers were crap. Whatever the case....I switched to zip ties and my life instantly got a lot easier. Next time I'll do zip ties from the start.
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LE red is such a great color. Did you cut any foam from the seats?
Yup. Cut about 2" off the seat bottoms. As much as I could. Didn't cut any out of the backs.
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