Sneige Factory – JZA80 Supra Build – Part 26: Gloss

After having had the car see the outside world for the first time under it’s own steam, we were on a bit of a high. I even drove it up to the top of the farm sitting on the floor of the car (no seat) simply to hear it brap. It had no brakes bar the cable handbrake, no map bar a lash-up getting it idling map in the Haltech that Obi-Ben threw in before he returned to the realms north of the Watford Gap. Also no power steering or rear screen, heck – it really had no business being driven.

BUT IT SOUNDED AWESOME.

We were brought spectacularly back down to earth when we got back into the workshop and were faced with the leaking gearbox (as outlined in the last part) and the enormity of what we still had left to do. img_5501

Obviously, when we sent the gearbox back off to ‘That’ South Eastern based gearbox company, we had to strip everything we’d put on – back off again.

While it was off getting fixed (or not…as the case was in fact) we had a couple of other niggles to deal with on the car. Namely, sorting out the last of the GOD DAMN ELECTRICAL NIGGLES.

If you’ve been following this blog since the beginning, you’ll recall that the wiring is this car was dodgier than a Caitlyn Jenner tribute comedian. I replaced the body and dash looms on the assumption that the Mk4 Supra only had two main flavours of body and dash looms. We now know this to be utterly wrong in every way. Through much painful searching i’ve now looked at about 5 different body and dash looms for TT & NA Supra’s.

They are all different. Even the ones that look the same, they are different too. It’s bonkers. We started by stripping the car’s interior (…again)

The problem was that there was no power to the interior at all. Neither the heaters or any of the internal ancillaries worked. I ended up fitting a twin turbo dash loom, with a twin turbo body loom into my factory NA Manual shell. They both came off the same car so expected them to work – which mostly they did. Apart from the heaters. No matter what i tried, we just couldn’t get them to fire up.

After much MUCH tracing of wiring diagrams and physical wires in the car. We found that at some point, Toyota just changed where the live feed from the heater came from in the loom. Not just the plug, but they it now comes from a completely different place.

To solve the problem, I managed to find where the heater live cable is in one part of the loom, then traced it back to the right hand foot well. Found where the live should be in the chassis loom and made a patch from the fuse  Fired right up.

I then had to put it ALL back together again. It was a huge amount of additional work and farting about, but for piece of mind that everything is 100% spot on, working and up to scratch behind there – its worth it.

Next few bits I did were to sort out the remaining paintwork. This involved painting the front fenders, bumpers, skirts and sort out the bonnet.

For years i’d been using UPOL primer and lacquer which had always been OK. It’s what I painted the body of the car in. This time, i was recommended some other stuff which is a slightly better quality high build primer and lacquer. Bloody hell was it good.

I primed, guide coated and then wet sanded the wings. The finish was excellent right off the bat.

I did the same with the bumpers and then blew it all in Royal Sapphire Pearl, finally applying a coat of Leckler lacquer. I’m very happy!

I then fitted the wings and bumpers to the car

Starting to look like something now eh? I painted and primed the skirts which was a bit of a nightmare. The black rattle can paint had been applied so poorly that it deeply rippled. I needed to flat the whole thing back before i could prime. Then flat again the primer. Took ages.

Finally, i had to do something about the bonnet clearance issue. The engine cleared fine, but the huge manifold and DBW throttle body from the RX8 really got in the way. The engine was now as low as it could possibly go in the car and I wasn’t going to mess about trying to get Mathew the workshop monkey to re-fabricate and lower the armadillo plenum – so modifying the bonnet was the only remaining course of action.

Enter what, upon first seeing it – DoyouknowLex coined ‘The Bizzle Bulge’. Cute. I started off by cutting a small chunk of the bonnet out and allowing the bonnet to clear the throttle body. It was OK but looked monumentally shit.

I decided that the next stage would be to cover it up and try to make it look less obviously shit. Out came the fibreglass.

So now it looked like the bonnet had a wart, but I figured it would look alright when painted?

15820808_10154395288348681_1687764055_oIt doesn’t look ‘terrible’ but doesn’t look great either.

All together, it was really starting to look like a car again.

15824041_10154395288373681_1940777465_o15856978_10154395288358681_1469261486_o

More as it happens.

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