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Hiro Protagonist

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Posts posted by Hiro Protagonist

  1. Amazing what a difference even just body-coloured door handles can make. Also replaced the front-left (passenger side) window belt moulding which was starting to peel quite bad.

    Body-coloured rub strips are sitting here waiting to go on as soon as I can get a heat gun/hair-dryer and some goo-gone for the old weatherstripping adhesive.




    And once again the wagon steals the good bits intended for the 102...swapped over the 101/111 Superstrut twin-piston brake conversion, figured I might as well make use of the pads and stop the seals drying out whilst the 102 stays off the road.


  2. The de-Ascent-ifying of Marvin continues - brand new genuine foglights and surrounds (from the top-spec Levin), everything was pre-wired so just needed the relay (installed ages ago when we had the dash apart) and combination switch. Globes are selective-yellow Osram Fogbreakers.

    Also finally got around to getting the black steering wheel controls w/ the hands free buttons installed on the ZRE wheel, I probably still prefer the silver but the blacks are growing on me.


  3. No massive changes for a while, got a full set of foglights on their way but in the meantime I thought I'd raise the driveway about 25mm towards the chassis




    Only went Lows as this still has to be a practical load-carrying daily.* Kings weren't my first choice but there are ridiculous wait-times for springs from Lovells these days (like 3+ months)

  4. Short version, towbar now fits - just have to rip the interior trim out of the boot to see if there's any pre-wired plugs of whether we'll have to wire it in from scratch

    Long version - measured the mounting points on the car with stringlines and plumbs, sent dimensions to manufacturer who confirmed that their entire batch was out (must have been an issue with the jig if that's the case), sent out a new towbar adjusted to the exact dimension of what I had (just in case) and arranged for Toll to pick the other one up (so at least I didn't have to schlep to the post office). One of the tow hook bolt holes was on the verge of stripping out however (not uncommon by the sounds of it) so had to chase it out with a thread tap, of course it had to be the one with the tightest clearance and worst access (muffler side, closest to bumper, and with a useless plastic tab on the bumper getting in the way).

    Next up is chasing down a facelift ZRE152 steering wheel so I can have SWC for the headunit (although Android Auto is now broken due to my new phone, also seems to be a common problem with S22s). Also picked up a full set of power windows/switches and door trims, at some stage I'll have to pull the interior apart and see how much is also pre-wired for them.

  5. On 1/18/2022 at 7:56 PM, Banjo said:

    Love the story Ian !  It's like "life in the day of a Corolla Owner"  Remind me not to buy a TAG towbar.  Their on-line add, says "Precision Engineered".  Made in Australia.

    Well, actually; Queensland, so I have to apologize for that, being a Queenslander myself.

    P.S.   Maybe the guy that welded it that day, had COVID coming on ?  Covid makes your eyesight crossed a bit, I hear.

    I've heard reasonable things about TAG so maybe I just got the Friday arvo/Monday morning special.  In the middle of getting the return sorted now so hopefully that goes relatively painlessly (annoyingly it is through eBay rather than direct to the manufacturer which doesn't help).

  6. Next step was trying to sort out the brake shudder - previous owner indicated that they had been told by the mechanic at last service/rego that the rears were almost done, so I figured that would be the first place to start.  Ordered new rotors and pads (didn't bother with the parking brake shoes), arrived quick-smart so got to work swapping them in....

    Man I forgot how much I hated drum brakes.  Even though the rear brakes are disc, the parking brake works via shoes against the inside of the rotor hat, which means you have to back them off when replacing the rotors otherwise they can catch on a lip.  Well, it turns out that I mustn't have backed them off enough (or they stuck to the inside of the rotor), because when I pulled off the right rear (had to use the jacking screws because it wasn't coming by hand) the shoes had grabbed on to something and managed to _bend_ the entire backing plate (despite the only connection between the shoes and the plate being two nail-thin pins).  This meant that the new rotor (or the old one, for that matter) could not fit back over the shoes regardless of how much they were backed off, so I was up Schitt's Creek without a rowing instrument.



    Cue a fit of inspiration to literally rip the entire parking brake hardware off the backing plate, smash the thing back as close to flat as possible with a sledgehammer, tie up the cable to the back of the hub and then make a break-of-dawn run down to Sydney the next day (with no working handbrake) to pick up a new wheel hub....which just turned out to be an entire rear torsion beam assembly, because it required less disassembly (and also gave a few spares).  Good thing I bought a wagon, and in a moment of poetic irony the first part the parts hauler hauled was literally it's own rear end (like a Babuskha doll)



    All goes back together without a hitch, then the new rotors and pads finally fit and my brake shudder problems were solved.


    Except they weren't.  So I figured that it must be the fronts, instead (not like there was any other option, apart from the uncomfortable possibility of excessive runout).  Didn't really have time before Christmas to order new rotors (at least pads I could get off the shelf), but fortunately I had a spare set of DBA T2s lying around that were slated to go on the ZZE102 (since the SuperStrut brakes run essentially the same 275mm front rotors).  Bit of overkill for a daily wagon hack, but time was more important and I wasn't driving up to Coffs to go camping over NYE with shuddering brakes.  At least these went in without a hitch (apart from having to take a few hours break whilst I tracked down which mate I had lent my caliper piston resetting tool to).  And lo and behold, the shudder was cured.



    So speaking of camping, this was one of the reasons why we bought a wagon in the first place (other than being a parts hauler).  Still tonnes of room (pretty much from window line up to the roof)



    Anyway, after we got back in the new year, I set about getting stuck in to the rest of the planned initial mods.  First up, towbar.  Should be simple, new towbar and straight car (no accident history) should mean everything lines up nice and neat, right?


    Guess again.  Looks like Blind Freddy got a job at TAG some time last year, and welded together my towbar as straight as Mardi Gras



    So now I've got to go through the hassle of an eBay return of a metre-long chunk of steel, which is always fun.  Still, at least the day wasn't a total write-off, as I acquired a set of 16" wheels to progress one step further along the path to Dad-bod Sportivo.51826340095_6cf0848ba4_b.jpg

  7. First mod done - replace the (disconnected) factory headunit with a Bluetooth/ACP/AA unit, so I no longer get bored shitless driving a 1ZZ down the freeway with no audio enhancement

    Still need to get the reverse camera installed and wired up, but that can wait until the towbar goes on


  8. So I went and did a thing the other day. Barring a KE10, we have now completed ownership of every single odd-numbered Corolla generation (3, 5, 7, 11 and now finally 9), and in some ways the fact that my pending existence caused my mother to have to sell her KE10 is kinda poetic (and ironic).
    So, meet Marvin - both after Marvin the Paranoid Android from HHGTTG (the movie remake unfortunately, since the BBC miniseries version was silver rather than white), and Lee Marvin from the classic Western musical Paint Your Wagon (I was just stretching for any name connected to the word "wagon" really).
    Pertinent details
    2006 Ascent wagon
    Manual (I am pathologically unable to buy an auto if manual is a viable option)
    All 3 cupholder dividers present and correct (apparently a minor miracle)
    Boot room for days
    Yes it will be getting some (minor) modifications
    No I won't be putting the 2ZZ in to it instead of the 102
    Yes I still have the 102
    No it isn't finished yet.





    by [url=https://www.flickr.com/photos/156852526@N07/]Ian Rigby[/url], on Flickr

  9. On 11/24/2021 at 1:11 PM, altezzaclub said:

    Those plugs will fit a whole lot of options the Japanese have but your car doesn't. 

    Depends on where it was built.  Aus-built Corollas had almost no pre-wiring for any accessory that wasn't standard/optional here (and even then not even the options).

  10. So in my continuing trend of spending money on the wife's car and procrastinating in actually getting my project finished (hell, it's barely out of the "started" phase really)...



    K&N Typhoon SRI, mostly for noise (and it is noticeable when you load it up but not much just at idle or crawling around the suburbs) but there will be a slight performance increase, and unlike most SRIs at least it actually has a heatshield to try and minimise the amount of hot air drawn in (it still uses the snorkel feed that ran to the standard airbox)

    Meant to be 100% bolt-in but due to the 11th-gen Corollas having a vacuum surge tank on the end of the head which the 10th-gen didn't (kit was designed for the 10th gen, but a lot of the drivetrain/chassis is the same between them) it meant I couldn't use the brace from the head to the underside of the intake pipe, so it's currently just resting against the seal on the heatshield - should be fine though.

  11. 6 hours ago, Banjo said:

    I believe there are already people working on this problem.  We all used to take our barbi gas bottles to BCF or Bunnings to get them filled.  Now you just call in at the servo, & swap it", when you fill up the petrol tank.

    Batteries will become so light & advanced eventually, that we'll probably just do the same with cars. Swap the battery.  I seem to remember early days in Brisbane, when I think there were electric buses; & the battery was pulled along behind in a trailer.  The bus just called into the depot; & they hooked on another fully charged trailer.  Like this . . . 

    Instead of pulling up to a bowser you'd park over a hatch in the ground, old battery pack gets removed and new battery pack gets installed (probably with some kind of hotel power lead so nothing cuts out), all in a matter of minutes.  The old pack then gets moved to a charging rack underground in the servo (where the tanks used to be, also nice and cool down there which will help with bulk charging).


    The hard bit is getting manufacturers to agree to an industry standard (or at least a standard range) so you don't have to accommodate 50 million different combinations of battery and interface.  That, and getting users and rechargers to agree on ownership and liability of the batteries themselves (kinda like the gas bottles), separate from the car itself.

  12. There's probably some invisible unknown factor that most of us would never be able to work out unless we worked in the engineering department of a manufacturer.  Who knows, maybe on some cars 4x100 is fine but for a slightly heavier/more powerful car the safety factor dips below 10 (or some other absurdly conservative factor that they keep above for legal reasons) and have to go for an extra stud.


    Just don't look at 60s/70s French cars with only 3-stud wheels - and I don't only mean dinky little 2CVs either, the V6 Alpine A310s were 3-stud too...

  13. My theory is that they work on wheel bearing/driveshaft design first, and the size of those then drives the size of the hub and then the size of the PCD.


    And several of them being similar comes down to metric equivalents of imperial diameters (ie 100 is 4", 108 is 4.25", 114.3 is 4.5"), and some of them are then rounded further to the nearest 5/10mm or were a metric design to begin with (like 110)

  14. On 10/15/2021 at 9:24 AM, altezzaclub said:

    Those rims will fit the 1980s AE90 Corolla, but not after that.  The 1991- AE100, were already 4x100 then.


    No FWD Corolla is 4x114.3 - E80 onwards (not including AE85/AE86) were all FWD up until the early 2000s, at which point some markets moved to 5x100 (and a couple of years later some others moved to 5x114.3)

  15. I believe the solenoids are different between 1ZZ and 2ZZ (part numbers are definitely different, but not by much), although some places out there on the internet do call up the same solenoid for both (note that 2ZZs have 2 solenoids, one VVL and one VVT, whilst the 1ZZ only has the VVT one).


    Have you checked the lift bolts first?  They're the first port of call on a 2ZZ whenever lift doesn't seem to be functioning properly (although not quite sure what you mean by "sounds bad"), and are a cheap and sometimes easy fix.  Also worthwhile looking at is the filter screens on the solenoids themselves, the solenoids could be fine but the filters clogged.

  16. 10 hours ago, ke70dave said:

    Just read back a few pages and saw that kaizen plug and plag adaptronic! where on earth did you get that! Does kaizen garage still exist?

    Good to see some project progress. 

    I got it from the guy who races JP's (Jason Purcell) AE82 2ZZ track car, JP got it from Ant originally years ago, no idea if he's still in business now.

  17. So, bulk update time (because I've been lazy)

    November 2020:

    Trial-fitted my AE102 Sprinter dash cluster the other day whilst I was starting to pull the interior out, the gunmetal dials look good (apart from the bubbles) but the lens has hazing in places and I would really like a 9k tacho for the 2ZZ so not sure if I'll stick with it (needs re-pinning anyway).


    Shifter cables are now out, the two screws for the cover on the tunnel are a right pain as they are buried underneath the ECU (which I was taking out anyway) and the heater core (which I definitely wasn't removing), managed to get there in the end but it really isn't a job for those with large hands (nowhere near as bad as on the Celica though).

    Swapped the MWR short shifter and SpeedSource solid bushes back over to the 6-speed shifter housing and then chucked it back in just to double-check the washer stacks (so it doesn't bottom out on the tunnel), will need to trim the battery tray before I try and fit the Celica shifter cables however. At least the shift pattern on the TRD knob finally matches the gearbox...


    May 2021:

    Battery tray notched to clear the selector counterweight (first time with an angle-grinder and managed to avoid setting fire to anything or cutting something unintended), selector cables test-run through the firewall (could be a little shorter) and solid brass bushes added to the eyelets. Can now officially select all 6 gears + reverse (doesn't mean much without an engine and driveshafts though :p)




    Picked up a set of front knuckles, rotors/dust-shields, hubs, ball joints and tie-rods from a Corolla Sportivo (along with the whole rack because the dude couldn't be bothered splitting it) so I can be one step closer to running off-the-shelf driveshafts and rotors (SuperStrut rotors are a couple of mm different in offset to the Sportivo ones and much much rarer). Originally was just looking at the hub (to match the spline) but that snowballed to the knuckle, tie-rod and rack-end to get everything to line up and match (ZZE123 has the tie-rod attach to the bottom of the knuckle whereas the 102 is to the top, so taper would be wrong).

    Also did a test-fit of my headers to the in-progress 2ZZ conversion on a certain famous orange AE112, the downpipe might be tight getting between the rack and the subframe but at least the headers clear everything easily.






  18. On 10/14/2018 at 5:28 PM, Hiro Protagonist said:

    Next step is probably some kind of lowering, but that'll probably have to wait until bonus-time next year.

    Well ended up waiting a little bit more than a year, but I've also been slack in updating my forum threads.  

    So, in clear violation of 2020 norms, we decided to socially un-distance the body from the wheels - Blue springs for a blue car, of course. Ended up with 40mm drop on the front and 30mm on the rear (but the rears should settle a little more seeing as how they are new). Passed the shoe test (cheated and used a boot :p), does make getting in and out of the driveway a little trickier since we have rolled gutters (so there is no dip on the driveway portion).


    Not much changed in the year since (what with COVID and still being in warranty and all), but not long after said lowering was done the SX/ZR wheels that I had stashed away copped a load of Pilot Sport 4s and went on (was waiting for the lowering springs to go in and for a 25%-off tyre sale)

    Here's how she sat, waiting for the train of cars to arrive at Nepean Dam for CCAD 2021


    • Like 1
  19. On 3/16/2021 at 9:08 AM, Banjo said:

    Does ! Yeah, a strange word.  I try not to use it.  DOE stands for Department of Education;  Department of Energy; Department of Ecology. Therefore DOEs refers to people who work for those arms of government, doesn't it.  There I go again, I've used it again.   Except we spell it incorrectly. Duznit ?  or maybe Donzen, which is when you get 12 off those staff together, who work for said departments.

    I might need to get my shot very soon. This is all messing with my head.

    DoE means Duke of Edinburgh Award to me :D  Damn monarchy has their fingers in everything

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