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1988 Corolla AE95 7AFE 4WD Project

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Story time! This is my 1988 Toyota Corolla SR5 AE95 4WD. I went on the hunt for one of these in July 2021. Looked for about 6 months and only found 3 in that time. 2 were full of rust which I wasn't interested in taking on. This one popped up with a issue where it wouldn't go into gear. (manual) Owner wasn't sure if it was a gearbox or clutch issue. The car had a lot of work done by the previous owner so I decided to jump on it. Ended up paying $1400aud site unseen as the car was 700km away from me. Paid another 700 to get the car to me. Car arrived in my possession October 2nd 2021. Overall very happy with the purchase! Diagnosed it as being the clutch due to being able to start the car it in gear. The old 4AFE didn't run the best, after swapping heaps of parts over trying to diagnose the issue I gave up on it and started looking at engine conversions. Actually came across Kevins build thread on here with his 7AFE AE95 and with me actually having a spare 7AFE here it was obviously meant to be! Was nothing wrong with the 7AFE but ended up stripping it down, chucking a full gasket kit through it, new water pump, Gates timing belt kit, Exedy HD clutch, rear main, crank and cam seal, etc. Had some personal things come up and lost interest in it for a while there, but back in full swing now, been really getting into it over the past few months. It's so close to being done and so keen to hit the beaches and trails in the old girl!

So here is a few pics of the progress so far!
The day she arrived!

The 4AFE 


Coming out!


The 7AFE 

Coming along nicely.

And ready to go in!

Clutch on!

Gearbox on, was such a tedious job but we got it done!

While the 7AFE is a notched block like the stock 4AFE it still required some grinding to clear the 4WD transfer case. 

And now shes bolted up in the bay! Still got a fair ways to go but loving the journey! Have all new bushes, wheel bearings and ball joints for the front end. And did the inner and outer rack ends and rack bushes while the engine was out. Also repainted the bay! 

Cheers for reading! Will update with more as I go!

Edited by RAT_SECA
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Posted (edited)

Just another post regarding the mods by not the bloke I bought it from but the bloke before him. Actually got in contact with him shortly after buying the car and got some photos and more info off him.
So it's got Dobinsons springs front and rear. Front are TN Magna springs (C43-038) which give roughly 1" lift and it has a 2" strut top spacer. Rear is what I believe to be EL Falcon springs with stock gen 1 Rav4 shocks which are 3" longer than standard AE95 shocks. Rear end also has custom adjustable upper control arms and panhard rod. For those that don't know, the rear end on these are live axle coil sprung. Future plans will be to get some more flex out of the rear end. I will be removing both front and rear sway bars. (car won't be daily driven so shouldn't need them.) I actually live in the town where the Dobinsons Springs production warehouse is so will be making a visit to them to try and find a slightly longer rear shock. I also plan on going 27x8.5 R14 Kumho MT tyres in the future. Current tyres are 185r14 Maxxis MT753's.

I'll throw in a couple pics from the previous owner and the journeys he took it on. 

I'm up in Central Queensland Australia so pretty cool that it has been so far south as Coffs Harbour NSW


Edited by RAT_SECA
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  • 3 months later...

 Another update! She's back on the ground for the first time in over a year!
Also sound deadened/underbody sprayed the lower radiator support and inner guards.

Colour matched the upper radiator support (weirdly from factory they are black in the centre.) And motor is almost completely back together! Big thanks to forum member Kebin for doing the wiring harness!

Have done all new front wheel bearings, bushes, ball joints and brakes. Once I have it running I will be doing the same to the rear! Will be like a brand new car when I'm done!
Also scored a parts car for free. She has a blown clutch, water in the motor and the radiator support has been pushed upwards. She will donate a few pieces to the build! 
Check out the height difference from stock to lifted! Roughly 4.5" higher taking lift and tyres into account.

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