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Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
12/13/16 12:28 a.m.
ssswitch wrote: Man, this is a really good looking Probe. Congratulations on your efforts.

Thanks much

pinchvalve wrote:
Ironsides wrote: Quick update, I've been driving the probe last 2-3weeks due to my FiST being tied up for some rust/mechanical warranty work.
Tell me more, what happened?

Edit: Removed my long winded rant regarding my Fiesta to make more room for probe work

Opti
Opti HalfDork
12/13/16 8:30 a.m.

Id send what you just typed out to Ford, minus the "never buying a Ford again." I bet they get you to another dealer and get it all taken care of.

ive had friends that had similar problems, dealer didnt give a E36 M3, but once the escalated it to the manufacturer, they did everything they coukd to make it right.

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
12/13/16 9:58 a.m.
Opti wrote: Id send what you just typed out to Ford, minus the "never buying a Ford again." I bet they get you to another dealer and get it all taken care of. ive had friends that had similar problems, dealer didnt give a E36 M3, but once the escalated it to the manufacturer, they did everything they coukd to make it right.

I thought about it right after this happened, I was unssuccessful locating any corporate service rep email addresses to fire off to and really dislike complaining over the phone. I did however send a pm to the service rep on Fiestastforum.com detailing the experience but never got a response. I was kind of in camp of, if it goes to another dealer, what else could possibly go wrong and open up another whole can of worms.

You purchase a new vehicle to have reliable transportation that will be covered under warranty in the event of issues (at least that was my reasoning). When I experienced issues that I had hoped to have rectified under warranty, I arguably got the car back in worse shape than it went in, less some rust temporarily covered in meh new paint. Which leaves me thinking, why did I bother bringing the car in?

Which also leaves me also thinking, why did I purchase the new car?

Sky_Render
Sky_Render SuperDork
12/13/16 11:49 a.m.

Cool build! So exactly what motor is that? It's a factory-turbocharged Mazda, right?

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
12/13/16 11:53 a.m.
Sky_Render wrote: Cool build! So exactly what motor is that? It's a factory-turbocharged Mazda, right?

Thanks! Yep, its a sohc turbocharged Mazda 2.2L, chassis and driveline are shared with the Mazda mx6 and Mazda 626.

BEJAY1
BEJAY1 New Reader
12/13/16 10:48 p.m.

Just caught this great thread and all your attention to detail. My first car was also a Crystal '89 GT. That futuristic body was one of a kind. Who cares if it was later marketed as a chick car. I got one of the earliest serials, former owner was a Dearborn MI Ford exec. Never forget driving the 5sp off the dealer lot never actually having driven stick before! Unfortunately I sold it just 2 years before jumping into autocross myself. Still, HKS made money off me in the 90's (sorry tossed my build info). Ever see this 1990 article from Turbo Mag? http://www.mx6.com/forums/1g-mx6-general/90254-sept-1990-turbo-high-tech-performance-mx6-missile-article.html?

JamesMcD
JamesMcD Dork
12/14/16 1:40 a.m.
BEJAY1 wrote: Just caught this great thread and all your attention to detail. My first car was also a Crystal '89 GT. That futuristic body was one of a kind. Who cares if it was later marketed as a chick car. I got one of the earliest serials, former owner was a Dearborn MI Ford exec. Never forget driving the 5sp off the dealer lot never actually having driven stick before! Unfortunately I sold it just 2 years before jumping into autocross myself. Still, HKS made money off me in the 90's (sorry tossed my build info). Ever see this 1990 article from Turbo Mag? http://www.mx6.com/forums/1g-mx6-general/90254-sept-1990-turbo-high-tech-performance-mx6-missile-article.html?

Did you have the HKS exhaust? I had it on my mx6 and haven't ever run across anyone else who had it. It sounded awesome IMO.

BA5
BA5 New Reader
12/14/16 9:11 a.m.

Does anyone ever body-kit these up to look like they did in "Back to the Future'? Kind of like what people do with DeLoreans?

Car looks awesome by the way.

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
12/14/16 11:49 a.m.

Thanks for the kind words guys, I haven't seen any back to the future recreations yet But I recently bought a parts car that had a full HKS exhaust system, the muffler was rotted out unfortunately but the piping/res does live on in someones mx6. I have a set of the HKS intercooler pipes I will be installing and currently use the same HKS EVC boost controller that Prototype used. Also had a full HKS Fcon setup as well but decided If I ever bother with tuning/bigger turbo I'll use MS.

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
12/27/16 9:01 a.m.

I managed to fit in some time to turn wrenches in between holiday bustle and got some work done on the car.

New steering rack is now hung in the car, the intermediate shaft bolt didn't seem very tight..and came out chewed up. I'm hoping my replacement bolt threads in and tightens up without issue, I pillaged the intermediate shaft off my parts car just in case.

The diff arrived last week as well, was developed as part of a small production run by Guru Motorsports (Xtreme Rotories) back in 2006ish. It's a Torsen style and it should fit perfect for the kind of driving I've been doing. I'll be delivering the trans and diff to the shop this week for the rebuild/install.

I was also able to source some replacement bushings for my trans mounts, the current 95a bushes were cause extreme vibrations which were pretty unbearable for street driving/normal use. These bushings are the Energy "hyper-flex" compound which seem to be 80-85a. I'm hoping these dampen this vibration a bit, while still providing the better gearbox/engine stability.

Replaced the friction plate on my used Fidanza to pair up with the fresh clutch:

Found myself in a spot where I did not have a blind hole puller to remove the old pilot bearing, saw a neat video a while ago which used compressed bread stuffed behind the pilot bearing to pop it loose. Low and behold, it worked quite well and is less of a mess than the packed grease method.

New bearing and clutch/flywheel assembly mounted up without issue :)

Last little bit I've been working up for next season is building a set of front caster plates, based around the current KSport pillow ball.

This design should allow for 15mm of positive caster adjustment while still allowing for negative camber adjustment. Going to make some mock up's to check for clearances before having a friend cut me a final set.

ian @ Jewel Or Jalopy
ian @ Jewel Or Jalopy New Reader
12/28/16 12:09 p.m.

I just read through this entire thread and I'm loving it. My first "real" car was an 89 Probe GT I bought in 1994 when I got my first "real" engineering job at Lear Seating. They suggested it would be a good idea to drive a Ford product, since I was working for the Ford side of the business (front seats for the 96 Taurus, a big, visible project).

The Probe was awesome, but since it was my daily driver and I had a 71 Alfa Spider as a toy the only mod I did to it was to upgrade to 16" gen 2 Probe wheels for summer tires, and used the stocks for winter tires in Michigan.

Reading through all of this has reminded me how nice that engine is. I was trying to choose between a Merkus XR4ti or the Probe GT. The Probe won partly because of FWD and Michigan winters, but also because I thought the 2.3 turbo was just too rough. The Mazda engine was silky smooth in comparison.

Looking forward to more updates!

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
1/3/17 9:46 a.m.

Pleasant surprise in the February mag :) Thanks again for the love guys!

Made some more progress this past weekend.

Took the old intercooler setup out, cried a little bit since it only lasted a year and I hacked the radiator support all up and now were going back to stock configuration BUT this paves the way for a legal DSP piping setup that will hopefully spool a tad faster and look much tidier.

A while back I mentioned that I had sourced/purchased a set original HKS intercooler pipes that were made back in the early 90's for the probes/mx6's. Unfortunately they were in pretty piss poor shape. The original L bracket was all bent and broken, the cast tb elbow had a few holes drilled for IAT's at some point and it had a 5th injector, which I never planned to use. On top of that all the couplers were rock hard or in tatters (To be expected at that age)

Excuse my ugly welds, still improving!

I sand blasted all the pipes with plans to repair and refinish, gave them a good rub down with a wire wheel, and repaired the bent up bracket. A while back I was able to swap the elbow for one without the injector, or the holes They are all cleaned up and ready for some paint, I also plan to wrap all the pipes in the DEI reflect-a-gold to keep the air intake as cool as possible while running the car hard.

The larger tight "S" pipe you see is actually a custom job that I found in one of my parts cars, had a pretty ugly 90 degree bov extension welded to it. I cut the mitre joint out and plan to use the provision for a Turbosmart plumb back BPV. These cars don't appreciate vent to atmosphere which is why the old setup was also configured to recirc.

While everything was apart I took advantage or the working room and installed the new beefy solid Addco Front sway bar, I reused my energy end links since the bushes seem to deflect less. I also pulled my lower control arms off and relubed the whiteline poly bushings to keep them happy. Planning to tear apart the rear end and do the same to the lateral arms and trailing arms.

Addco to the right

Hoping to hear back from the trans shop this week so I can get the gearbox reinstalled and work towards getting the car back up and moving.

Ironsides
Ironsides New Reader
1/9/17 7:42 a.m.

My girlfriend got me some sweet magnetic number plates for christmas :)

Found a use for an old clothes hanging rack that was laying around, they make great small parts hangers. Primed and painted the HKS pipes, misordered a bunch of couplers unfortunately so I'm waiting for the correct sizes to show up.

I was able to sell the old IC setup quick enough and I picked up a Turbosmart plumbback BPV to mate up with the new pipes.

While I was waiting for the pipes to dry, I tackled another project I had kicking around. I'll be reinstalling the stock airbox with the new IC pipes and I wanted to ensure things stay as cool as possible. I removed the the ribs on the air box lid and wrapped it in Reflect-a-gold with hopes to keep the intake charge as cool as possible. I'm debating doing the lower as well. The next step to this project is to ditch the fender resonator and duct the air box with fresh air from the front of the car via a naca duct and a hose. Wish I had taken some readings of the prior setup to gauge how much improvement will be made but 20/20 hindsight.

The pipes will also get the reflect-a-gold treatment.

wheelsmithy
wheelsmithy Dork
1/9/17 9:01 a.m.

Compressed bread. Golly. Great thread.

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
2/23/17 7:48 a.m.

Transmission has finally returned home, fresh oem mazda seals/bearings and the new torsen mounted inside.

Fortunately I caught this prior to factory diff implosion, I have 1 spare gearbox, but they are getting harder to find.

Need to source a few crush washers for assorted sensors, and pick up some Redline D4 and I should be in business.

Scrubbed/cleaned by knuckles down and slapped some Rustoleum on to tidy up the wells a bit.

Continuing along with the new Ic setup, I wrapped up the pipes as well in reflect-a-gold and have just about all the couplers/tbolts needed.

I decided if I'm going to bother, I might as well attempt some other improvements, so I ordered up an Treadstone TRV125 cooler with a 3.5" core, I'll weld elbows on the end and it should match up perfectly to the stock location.

Hoping to get the gearbox and most associated components back in the car this weekend so I can get the car back on all fours. Also picked up a new set of wheels that should fit a bit better and utilize a set of leftover re's from my fiesta. I will add updates as I go

TED_fiestaHP
TED_fiestaHP Reader
2/23/17 8:45 a.m.

The transmission is basically the same thing used in the Mazda 626, I think the only difference is the axle splines in the Diff. SO if you need transmission stuff, that might give you another source.

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
2/23/17 9:59 a.m.
TED_fiestaHP wrote: The transmission is basically the same thing used in the Mazda 626, I think the only difference is the axle splines in the Diff. SO if you need transmission stuff, that might give you another source.

They are in fact the same as the H type transmission used in the mx6/626 GT's, Mazda is actually the source of all my seals etc since they still stock some of the pieces. Fortunately I am not in need of anything as of now and I have one extra gearbox just in case, now with the torsen installed I don't need to worry about shearing the spider gears or dropping the diff pin

TED_fiestaHP
TED_fiestaHP Reader
2/23/17 10:11 a.m.

My limited experience with these, was from converting my fiesta to a ford escort gearbox, then I found out the quife LSD was only available for the Mazda 626 version. I actually found a service manual for the mazda gearbox. The 626 gearboxes are still on E-bay or they were a little while ago. Somehow I did have a similar failure with the open diff, maybe from wheel spin?

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
2/27/17 9:57 a.m.

Got the transmission and most of the running gear back in the car this weekend. New poly mounts took some swearing and prying to line up but all is socked up tight. Trans seems to cycle through gears smoothly.

Quickly mocked up the airbag and ic pipes. Need to work on wire management to clean things up but it should tidy up well. Have a few 2" bends and the last remaining silicone couplers on order to fit the new Treadstone cooler which should be here this week.

New wheels are also here, they also seem to fit well and are by far my favorite wheels i've had for the car. These are Konigs new offering the hypergram, flow-formed using enkei's process and only 16lbs!

Hit a bit of a snafu as well, while everything was apart, I decided the replace all the 28yr old fuel hoses to avoid any surprise issues in the future. Got all the stubborn hoses off except the one that attaches to the FPR hardline. I carefully attempted to slice it with a razor, but not quite carefully enough, knicking the hardline with the blade

I pulled the upper plenum off (only way to remove/replace the hardline) so i', taking the time to have the injectors cleaned/flowed and clean out my IAC and TB all of which are quite grungy.

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
3/5/17 10:05 p.m.

Hope I'm not boring everyone with gritty details.

New intercooler came in, nice piece. Comparison to the original tube and fin intercooler, the new bar and plate style should cool more efficiently:

However the way it fits in the car....places it directly behind the bumper support lol And unfortunately street prepared class rules prohibit modification of the body and structural members. Now I assume it will get some shred of airflow as it, but I have an idea that may promote proper airflow through the core and retain the body as is.

Placement of the new intercooler routing the piping through the original mounting locations. I mocked it up positioning the cooler offset to the right but it still never really put the core in direct airflow:

Both sides of the bumper support have a decent sized opening, I had an idea that I could utilize these to direct airflow into the core. Quick mock up with some cardboard, ducts will be made out of sheetmetal:

In additional to mocking up the cooler, I replaced all my 28yr old rubber fuel hoses with new lines and clamps. Got my injectors back, 2 of them were seriously suffering according the the flow analysis. They were able to be cleaned though and returned to the proper functionality, good as new. I replaced the o-rings and seals and reinstalled the rail as well. Next step will be to clean my intake and tb/iac and get that all remounted. Any thoughts on gasket shellac or grey rtv on the plenum to lower intake gasket to promote seal, or should I just use the paper gasket?

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
3/13/17 7:24 a.m.

Signed up for the first autocross of the year on April 15th so I'm officially working towards a deadline, more so since I want to get some street miles on it before hand to break in the clutch and shake the car out.

Over the past week I've been chipping away at little things. I reassembled my intake/tb after a thorough cleaning new seals all around. TB and IAC were quite grungy, before:

 photo 48482D89-94FF-421F-8CBA-47D128E6F627_zpsur55nidz.jpg

After:  photo 2F85ADC8-87DD-4FD8-8363-DF250F8F4B16_zpse5ad9t9k.jpg

Also wanted to replace the coolant hoses that were behind the intake that run to the IAC/TB and Lower plenum, not a fun job given their location and the lower intake being in place still. The factory molded hoses are also all but obsolescent (even still, who wants to buy "new" 30 yr old hoses) Took some finesse to route the new hoses without kinks and rubbing risks, but I believe they are all situated nicely now. The old hoses were a time bomb:

 photo 1F2D21E9-9C34-4942-990E-370072718D97_zps9q3xm2vn.jpg

After the intake was back on I was able to better mock up the piping locations and I'm now ready to build some permanent brackets for the IC and begins tightening couplers down for the last time. Hoping if I can work through some of the little things this week I should be able to be back up and running in a week or so time permitting. Much excite.

 photo 1CA943EE-307A-43FF-AB98-3A525AC0DFB2_zpsvk4mhvzx.jpg

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
3/20/17 12:53 p.m.

Made some good progress this weekend, I sold my Forza seats a few months ago, and picked up a set of reclinable sparco seats. The bolstering is actually a bit more supportive and MUCH easier to get in an out of. Another driver for the change was the stock 3pt belts now work properly again, which was a large concern with the Forza's after removing the roll bar and harnesses.

Replaced all the slider fasteners with grade 8 hardware during install.

 photo AD89D530-C8A5-4FA6-B397-478F4F2C9D6A_zpsfzgyzofx.jpg

Made big strides in knocking out items on the to-do list, made up a bunch of brackets to hang the new intercooler in place:

 photo CAA6D5BA-46F6-4B45-9339-B1F46523DD13_zpsd1iebhwh.jpg

 photo DAB98EBA-5A5E-437A-A211-F523BF197E6D_zpscbut8sku.jpg

 photo 9D038070-03BB-482E-8E04-3DC09BC328B9_zps2yd2dhkq.jpg

Made up a bracket to solve where to position my battery distribution block:

 photo 5AFE1F60-C16C-4433-A041-469C7E9C4ACE_zpsg3josle2.jpg

 photo 6E628949-C15F-418E-A816-A17288B04734_zpsqcgkf4oz.jpg

Most of the intercooler piping is all tight and positioned correctly, I checked overall wiring and hoses and made sure they were properly insulted/fixed.

Time had finally came to fill the trans up, before doing so I replaced the o-ring seal on the speedo gear to prevent any leaks.

 photo E59FAA46-A2A2-4408-B6C2-F3F7921F3D2C_zpsxycfx320.jpg

Weapon of choice for the gearbox (more convenience, was planning to run redline d4 but sourced this locally):

 photo 772378A9-9126-41D7-B181-82E5DBABC049_zpsrgxvegna.jpg

This next bit brought to you by Home Depot:

Final thing that I got done was to plumb the airbox with a high pressure cold air feed, 2.5" home depot flexible tubing though the fender well, right into the box. I removed the factory "resonator" tube and zip tied the piping right in. Alternatively, going right through the fender into a NACA duct would probably be effective/less piping but street prepared class rules, no cutting of the body unless tire clearance.

 photo 824EEEC8-DAB4-44C6-A805-9ABAEF3F59C5_zpswchn1nd8.jpg

 photo 4FCCF47D-280B-472F-B434-D89DCE91B9ED_zpsyxldqwwd.jpg

 photo 960E9286-EB5B-44B4-8995-6686F1539ACF_zpsbsj7gbvv.jpg

 photo 683DEE5F-75CC-4224-A0E9-D73DD0D04A6B_zps0iqr7k6m.jpg Tuesday evening I should be able to go by a friends shop and make up the ducting for the intercooler. Once those are installed I can install the bumper and exhaust and fire her up!

4cylndrfury
4cylndrfury MegaDork
3/21/17 10:13 a.m.

Oh man, I love threads like this one - I love the approach. Not hurried or cheap. But frugal, and logical upgrades that will have a "whole is greater than the sum of the parts" effect.

Be sure to update us on what youre able to get done regarding fire-up!

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
3/23/17 2:02 p.m.
4cylndrfury wrote: Oh man, I love threads like this one - I love the approach. Not hurried or cheap. But frugal, and logical upgrades that will have a "whole is greater than the sum of the parts" effect. Be sure to update us on what youre able to get done regarding fire-up!

Thanks! That is kind of my thought process with the way this car has gone. There has been some money thrown away along the way but that is part of learning from your mistakes/missteps I suppose.

Haven't fired it quite yet, but got my Intercooler air deflectors made up, they fit about as well as I had hoped, should have just ponied up the money for stainless sheetmetal but a quick coat of black paint will suite them fine.

 photo EA37D4F9-411C-4B7B-9EC1-3F42A00B5828_zpsa5wkxqik.jpg

Hiding behind the support openings:

 photo B2C231FE-01B9-4C55-B138-81138D6C57D3_zpswe7bh4a0.jpg

How they are tucked in, I'll be riveting them to the back of the support once the paint dries:

 photo 18B6A805-BB8C-4A31-B95A-9E0A62A93C10_zpsxteirr2u.jpg

Also got my spare valve cover and yet another vcg installed, pcv is routed like stock to abide by the rules but added catch cans to help contain the oil/grime.

 photo 10D527AA-AD06-4DDC-80EC-3D79B8514735_zpstqxajc7d.jpg

Ironsides
Ironsides Reader
4/3/17 9:13 a.m.

Over the past week or so I've been feverishly working away.

Got the intercooler ducts painted and installed:

 photo 562FD38C-318F-4F12-A3EB-2458BC979189_zpsahg8mqt8.jpg

Replaced my awkwardly bent upper radiator hose with a cut down silicone Rx7 hose, and used a coupler T-bolts that I scored since the eBay vendor sent me 20 that were the incorrect size lol

 photo EF8DD270-AD4B-4980-ADCB-BD991F95A523_zpsvtl2avfu.jpg

Took delivery of the lot of OEM coolant/oil hoses, and replaced the turbo coolant hoses and oil return hose, all of which were either dry as hell or rock hard. I used DEI heat sheathing on the coolant hoses due to their close proximity to the turbo/heat hoping to prolong life.

 photo 63808193-553B-441D-9155-8F44F477E9EA_zpspsugvuai.jpg

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 photo 6A288C21-E71B-499A-98BC-A7E6A7697B02_zpscvmdereb.jpg

Had some oil seepage from the return which sparked the motivation for replacement. Need to recheck this week to check for clamp tightness (Personal note)

 photo FE0B6CA0-BE13-499E-8190-FF38AC28E11D_zps0mnkm1ny.jpg

With that all sorted, I was able to get the car fired up, all seems good. The catch can on the PCV-intake plenum connection was causing a pretty large vac leak ($15 catch can isn't air tight, who knew ) So I removed it, still seem to have a slight vac leak but try as I might I wasn't able to find it. (pulling 15-16in I'm told healthy f2t is somewhere around 17-19in) But it run's well aside from a slight pop at idle. Still need to swap in some fresh plugs and possibly wires since the ones I have on there are a bit old at this point.

After start up and filling the new steering rack with fluid, I was still noticing some clunking/poping in the steering This was the whole reason I put a new rack into it in the first place (shame on me) I was able to narrow it down to the two universal joints that connect the column to the rack, one had some side to side play the other was very loose. These parts are obsolete from ford and mazda, however I had hung onto some spares from a parts car fortunately and they were nice and tight. Steering feels fantastic now

One of the old worn units:

 photo E7BF5F63-7680-499E-B602-59CE17FD2087_zpsviqothfd.jpg

Took a couple quick drives around the block to shake the cobwebs and spiders out, runs great, clutch is nice and smooth and trans seems to shift ALOT smoother with the Syncromax compared to the only pennzoil synromesh I had been using. My wideband definitely needs to be recalibrate and I hit fuel cut a few times on accident (still no chipped ECU installed) I'm going to revert the boost control back to the factory controller (8psi) for the time being and the first autox event.

Car is super quiet now with the airbox in place and plumback bpv, the exhaust note is bit smoother and lower now which is nice!

Took it down to my friends shop where we got it aligned and swapped a set of leftover re71r's onto my new wheels. Tried a bit of toe out in the front and static camber set at -1.5 all around to start. With everything evened out and the new front sway bar, the steering feel is incredible, very responsive, you can feel the bar controlling the front end and the steering wheel snaps right back. Feels like a whole new car.

 photo BBAEBCB4-EEE2-445D-ABC7-CE6CD1029187_zps40wtnbl4.jpg

 photo 7DB49C28-F274-4493-BA48-0C793A53ACF5_zpsctwvyzvl.jpg

 photo 1A75FE78-966C-47E1-AECA-4E4FBB1C6EF8_zps2y26uxwd.jpg

 photo C0EED015-871A-4C00-98FF-0708F146E471_zpsopduib4a.jpg Few little bugs to work out, but overall super happy.

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