Toyota Altezza daily

Thread in 'Project Cars and Builds Threads' started by Tripp, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    This is my Toyota Altezza RS200 Z edition with the 6 speed manual, and the gorgeous Neo V1 kit. It was imported a year ago, undersealed and rust free, and full of JDM goodness. One thing that drew me towards it was that it is almost stock, apart from exhaust and sound system. The only apparent downside when buying it was that the MOT was due in a month but as it seemed so happy to drive this wasn't an issue. It felt so good that I decided the best thing to do is thrash it at a track day two days after buying it to really find any faults. It actually ran great, didn't have any overheating issues, brakes were responsive but being on factory suspension and sway bars, it rolled a lot around the corners. My idea of keeping it completely stock faded as I knew I would want to track it more.

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    You can see the body roll here

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    So, the first step was a lightened flywheel and clutch to get it going. The current dual mass one shudders and doesn't feel great. Without having a driveway, garage or decent tools I knew I should take it to a garage to do the work, so I thought I'd get the MOT done beforehand in case of any surprises. Of course it failed because I don't know what I'm doing. Slightly seized brake caliper, both lower ball joints and the one bulb I didn't check. And the day after the failed MOT it lost spark on a cylinder. So I got some second hand brakes off a Lexus which were fine, and ordered ball joints and track rod ends, and a replacement coil pack. The brakes went on without issue and I bolted on a chassis brace which came with the car.

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    My plan is to keep it going well for grip trackdays over the summer. Then during winter I'll sort out the suspension side of things, stiffen it up a bit then hopefully take it for some gentle sideways action. I was surprised at how easily the back comes loose in the wet. It is comfortable so I'll keep it as a daily for now. As a complete mechanical novice I don't expect frequent progress but I'll keep updating this thread whenever there are improvements. My list of things to do:
    Uprated sway bars
    Rebuild brakes properly
    Decent tow hook/strap mounts fabricated
    Coilovers/adjustable arms etc
    Polybush
    New wheels
    Steering wheel
    Clean up VVTI solenoids
     
    #1 Tripp, Jun 2, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
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  2. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    It has been a while, had to move house so things have been on hold but a shopping spree has happened and the parts are starting to trickle in.

    Nothing eventful has happened, got the MOT sorted, new flywheel and been enjoying driving it and taking it to a few shows.

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    But now it is time to sort it out and get it as I want. First on the list was brakes. On a bit of a budget so I just tarted up the old calipers and slapped some new discs with yellowstuff pads
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    Next was a short shifter from ebay as I couldn't find a more prestigious branded one for sale. My gearbox feels a bit clunky which I'm not sure is normal, so the shorter throw is a bit of hard work at times but I like it.
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    And I also had a package delivered from a small unknown shop
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    I'm looking forward to getting these in, I went for a slightly softer spring rate than suggested so I'll see how they are, but I'll probably end up swapping them out for something stiffer if I get more track time.

    So I'm now waiting on tension rods, steering wheel, upper front three point cusco strut brace, cusco rear sway bar and various little things. Next on the list are getting the Enkei NT03s refurbished and coated dark grey, probably some wheel spacers to fill the arch a bit more, and a bucket seat. Not sure what to do with regards to the seat, maybe a reclining recaro from an evo for comfort but I'd like it to be simple to install as I have no fabrication abilities, which probably means forking out for a SXE10 bride rail from Japan.

    I want to get a lot of this done so I can take it to a grip track day again in late September. I'm far too precious with it for drifting right now!

    Hopefully I'll have an update soon with the coilovers on and wheels pushed out :)
     
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  3. Jackula

    Jackula Member

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    Very nice mate!
    How did you get on with the short shifter Install?
    If there is one thing I dislike about the IS is the shifter feels so loose and floppy lol
    I was a bit scared off by eBay ones but the fact you are running one gives me slight confidence.
    Sad to hear about the grey wheels, love that white on white look:worthy:
     
  4. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    The short shifter was a lot better than I expected, aside from the clunkiness of the gearbox which was there before but it is now exaggerated more. Because of less leverage pushing past first to get it in to reverse is tough but hopefully a longer gear knob will make it easier as I still have the original ball.

    The shifter itself is good, after a couple of days with it I can't fault the hardware. Install was straightforward, and at a price tag under £30 if it isn't for you, you can swap in the original and not be too pissed off. I'd say try it! :nod:
     
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  5. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    And the wheels.... I'm just trying to hide all the brake dust :p
     
  6. Jackula

    Jackula Member

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    Yeah, I suppose you are right on it being a cheap experiment, I just didn’t fancy it snapping on me aha. I’ll give it a go and as you say if I don’t like it not the end of the world. Cheers
     
  7. Jackula

    Jackula Member

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    Yeah, I suppose you are right on it being a cheap experiment, I just didn’t fancy it snapping on me aha. I’ll give it a go and as you say if I don’t like it not the end of the world. Cheers
     
  8. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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  9. Jackula

    Jackula Member

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  10. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    Yeah dead simple, but a bit of a fiddle to get the end in the hole (that's what she said)
     
  11. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    It has been a few weeks, and a few things have changed. This is the list of what has been done:

    Japspeed tension rods

    HSD Monopro Coilovers (10k front, 8k rear)

    Cusco rear sway bar, polybushes + new drop links

    Cusco front triangular strut brace with brake stopper

    Short shifter

    HKB steering boss

    Driftworks budget steering wheel

    Recaro red DC2 seat

    Bride seat rail

    Japspeed hubcentric spacers (20mm front, 25mm rear)

    Apexi air filter

    Ride height + alignment by WIM/Tony (road/track setup)

    Driftworks AE86 Handbrake knob (trimmed to fit Altezza)

    I'm pretty shit at taking photos as I go so here are a few beauty shots

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    I have a Takata harness on the way, then the next steps will be to get a passenger seat rail for my other matching Recaro, refurbish the rims and have the paintwork tidied up, Driftworks camber arms front + rear (when they sell them again), Minty Fresh steering knuckle and perhaps some rims that fit properly
     
  12. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    Well it has been a winter, calmed things down car wise as I had no garage/cover to work in, but have done a few bits now the weather has turned a bit nicer. This is where the car was last year, this is at Trax 2018.
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    Had it at a rolling road day to see how many ponies had escaped the field. The answer is a few, but it is about average for these now, and it is fueling fine etc.
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    The car is my daily and was having issues with the underground car park at work, with both the front bumper and exhaust clipping on the ramp, but I quite liked the fitment. The rolling radius of the rim/tyre combo is smaller than factory, so I've been able to go up a size, correct speedo, gain ride height and keep fitment:
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    Thanks to driftworks I have some sex appeal. Fronts are 18x8.5 et 30 wrapped in 225/40R18 Falken Azenis FK510, The rears are 18x9.5 et 30 in 235/40R18 Nankang NS2s.

    I was concerned about the front so put in some Japspeed upper arms
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    I had a bit of rubbing with the arch liner on the front left, but a heatgun solved that and have it pushed back enough to clear. Theres a bit of rubbing with potholes and heavy cornering, but not too bad. Rears poked a bit, I might camber in more with adjustable rear arms if I have spare cash later in the year. This was before I dialed in all the possible factory camber
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    The paint was looking a bit dirty, so clay barred the fuck out of it. The left side of this picture was AFTER 2 washes, the right is after some clay. Took many hours but she's looking a lot better now. Excuse the sexy feet.
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    I had been on the lookout for a good roof spoiler for a while, and the Minty Fresh was the clear winner for the shape I wanted, so got one, had it painted and put it on slightly wonky, but correcting it is more effort than I can be bothered with
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    The car came from Japan with a crazy Pioneer Carrozzeria head unit, with a hard drive full of Japanese pop, DVD player, TV tuner and receiver, its own GPS, toll reader.... a fancy piece of kit with about boxes tucked all over the place but it wasn't usable so it had to go. The wiring was pretty scary with only some of it labelled (in Japanese) so my method was to pull the bundle and cut any wires left over. It worked, and using an ISO adapter I was able to plug the new Pioneer unit in to the factory plugs. An easy win.
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    I'm currently planning on changing the rear spoiler.... had an Idea at Japfest that might look shit but there's only one way to find out: Need to shave the mounts to fit and paint, and I used a spare boot lid so I don't trash my current one with holes drilled and filled.

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    She is now pretty close to where I want her to be for this year. Other bits that have been done over winter; Saitoworks sunstrip, replaced headlights, fluid changes, alignments, MOT (passed first try) and new tail lights are on the way.

    Looking at making some power changes later ion the year. Not quite sure what to do, the choices are:
    • ITBs + ECU. I love the NA
    • Sensible engine swap: 1JZ perhaps, but probably wasted on an Altezza, better to do it to an IS200?
    • Not sensible engine swap: 13B, I like rotary goodness.

    So now for some beauty shots:
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  13. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    The decision has been made with regards to the engine. I'm going the ITB route!

    So far I have got:
    AE111 45mm ITBs, they cleaned up nicely and had all the linkage required AND the TPS
    SQ Engineering adaptor
    SQ Engineering 100mm trumpets
    Pipercross filter and plate
    EBay special vacuum collector box

    I'm hoping that this will all fit, the clutch fluid reservoir is likely to be in the way, especially with the long trumpets but I'll do a test fit one weekend to check. Also hoping that the throttle cable in place will be fine.

    The vacuum bits have kept me busy trying to understand how it will all work. Currently thinking of having a vac line from each cylinder (slots available with the SQ Engineering adaptor) to the collector box, then a feed to the brakes, one to a MAP sensor and one to a catch can. The catch can will have both vent pipes as I won't be feeding anything back to the intake.

    ECU wise, seems like the Link Plugin for Altezza is the best bet. I should then easily retain all dash functions which can be a pain on these cars, and be able to have it tuned primarily off the TPS and have MAP table for any corrections if required.

    I'm moving house so will be putting this on hold for a few months, and will then need to find somewhere to have it all set up with a tune. I think stuff like setting up the idle correctly is a bit beyond me so will need to find somewhere to set it all up and tune it in one go...

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  14. WestleyNA

    WestleyNA New Member

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    Looks a whole lot better with those new additions! I've wondered what the altezza spoiler would look like with the MintyFresh roof spoiler (my IS came with an altezza spoiler)

    Bet it'll be pretty savage with the ITB's! An engine swap is defo on the cards for mine in the far future :p
     
  15. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    I did a test fit to see how things would physically fit in. The good news is the 100mm trumpets are long enough that the lip will clear the clutch fluid reservoir, and they fit under the cusco strut brace which I love.

    There are a couple of problems though:
    1) The throttle cable linkage in the default location on the blacktop throttle bodies doesn't fit. SQ engineering who I got the adaptor plate and trumpets from also do a linkage relocation kit which should be an easy fix, but more time spent waiting for delivery from Australia.
    2) No room for the big pipercross air filter. This is a bit more concerning as smooth air flow in to the trumpets is quite important. It looks like I'll need to try using foam socks for filtration instead, which will likely impact the performance of them.

    I'll paint the the throttle bodies black as they look a bit dirty, and I'll clean up the engine bay one day too. After the plumbing in of the vacuum bits and purchase of the ECU I should be ready to get them tuned and running.

    IMG_20190803_125657_289.
     
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  16. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    And the ITBs are on! Dropped it off at Fensport at the start of December to have a tune and a couple of sensors installed and got it back before Christmas. It feels great and makes a heck of a noise on WOT.

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    Considering this is the first car I have properly worked on, felt like a big moment when I had a new ECU plugged in and connected to a laptop to test some sensors. Unfortunately the only Windows laptop I have has a broken keyboard and Link don't have anything for linux distros
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    While being tuned it decided it didn't like the Pipercross sock filters
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    So will need to get the sausage filter on. I've been trimming away at a spare clutch master cylinder and should be able to get it to clear the filter plate and have a remote reservoir.

    As you can see I have also painted my engine cover to spice it up a bit. The list of things to do in the new year:
    - Power steering pump, steering rack, steering bushes all need TLC
    - RCAs
    - Rear adjustable arms (probably from KFD)
    - Diff seals, or different diff (would love a 4.3+)
     
    #16 Tripp, Dec 26, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2019
  17. doninphi

    doninphi Member

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    This is a really cool car. Nice work. Looks so clean! :)
     
  18. Armo

    Armo New Member

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    love this ! Nice build
     
  19. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    The modified clutch master is on giving enough room for the sausage filter. I don't have any pics but basically took off the reservoir, ground away the reservoir supports, stuck in a Rav4 adaptor and piped it to an external reservoir. As I had spaced out the throttle cable mount point I also had to clearance the filter plate slightly. Nothing major, just a slight notch. Bleeding the clutch was a bitch as I didn't refill the master cylinder before putting it in so was a pain to get all the air out. It still needs another bleed but it is driveable for now.

    DSC_0606.JPG

    It is a bit of a squeeze to get it on and off, and the bonnet touches the filter which is less than ideal for air flow but I'd rather keep my engine safe while I daily it.


    To celebrate I took it to a DWYB day at Pod, my first time out drifting. I learnt a heck of a lot about the car and how to drive. Was just making some progress on the kidney track when I blew a fuse to the ECU (thank you to those who helped push be back to the pits). I'm hoping to go again soon and will try and get a seasoned drifter to jump in the car and correct what I'm doing wrong

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    Woops. No wonder I blew a fuse.
     
  20. bakernofears

    bakernofears New Member

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    Pretty certain I've seen this driving out the back of Walden towards Sawston before.
    Do love a nice white Altezza I must say :D
     

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