So, I've always been a fan of the revlimiter gauge faces for the Miatas. I've had them in basically every Miata I've owned. For the NB, I went with the Warbird Gauges and had them customized with a red tach and red hash marks on the speedometer. Overall the installation was pretty easy if you’re handy.
LED headlights get a lot of hate, but I love them. The hate stems from people putting LED's in projector housings that were never made for LEDs. This leads to having effectively no pattern or cutoff to the light and just blasting everyone's eye holes out.
Done correctly, LED headlights have the same cutoff as the halogen bulbs they replace while being brighter, using less power, and lasting much longer.
So yeah, after weeks of chasing a very persistent misfire on cylinder 4 (P0304), I think I have FINALLY figured it out. My map sensor wasn’t getting a vacuum signal due to incorrect vacuum line routing. I honestly don’t know why it would cause a single cylinder misfire, as there was no vacuum leak, but fixing that seems to have fixed my problem. I’m cautiously moving forward with doing some fun stuff. I went ahead and ordered some LED headlight bulbs from superbrightLEDS and a bodywork suction cup to try and pull out a dent in the quarter panel, and I think I’m going to go ahead and order some new gauge faces from revlimiter.net in the next couple of days. Also have some top leak issues to fix, and then I think I’ll do megasquirt. Unless of course the misfire of doom returns. Fingers crossed.
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I have been absolutely spoiled by having CarPlay head units. You get navigation with live traffic data, all your music/podcasts, phone calls, and text messages/whatsapp messages sent straight to your car's stereo with Siri integration. I went with the Pioneer 1400NEX ( https://amzn.to/2US8yNx ), which I also had in my beater Honda Fit before it was replaced with a Prius.
So it looks like I was wrong about the new motor having a blown head gasket. It looks like through a series of almost unbelievable coincidences, I actually just had THREE bad #4 spark plug wires, and the exhaust will still full of dried-on coolant from the original motor that legitimately DID have a blown head gasket. The plug wire caused the misfire, and the dried on coolant billowing from the exhaust made me obviously think "This thing is burning coolant, must have a blown head gasket". It looks like I was wrong.
I'm going to cautiously go about fixing things on the car while I slowly build up to about 500 gentle miles on it to break the clutch in, then I'll drive it like I stole it for a bit to make sure it's going to hold up, then it's time for boost.
Here's a video of me saying the same thing with words instead of letters on a screen.
So, basically my “new” motor has a blown head gasket. I’m debating between just replacing the head gasket and trying to get my motor replaced. I’ll update this post later when I feel like typing more.
In my last vlog I mentioned my clutch problems. Basically it's like the clutch was never engaging. Trying to put it in any gear when running was basically like trying to put it in gear without using the clutch.
As I mentioned last week, Project NB was really starting to come together. The motor is in and the fuel pump made it run. I set about doing my clutch adjustment, but even with a new slave cylinder and clutch line and doing all the pedal adjustment and bleeding the hell out of the system, it won't go into any gear with the engine running. I'm going to try to get it on the lift tomorrow and figure out just what the hell is going on.
It runs under it's own power! I still need to install the new clutch slave cylinder and bleed the clutch system, and I'm still waiting on a replacement radiator since the one I got from Rockauto leaks, but I got the DW300 fuel pump installed today and finally cranked the damn car up.
I should get the clutch stuff done by this weekend but the radiator won't be here until Monday. I might can fill the leaky radiator up with water and take it around the block, we'll see how brave I feel when the time comes, but all that really matters is it's a real live running car. I didn't even mess up the timing belt or anything!
So this Saturday I had the Miata almost put together and a shop with nothing really to do. I decided it was time to get it running.
I put the car on the lift, installed the lower radiator hose, put the mid pipe on the exhaust so I could install and plug in the catalytic converter, tightened a few accessories up that I couldn't easily get to from above, and plugged in the oil pressure sending unit (when I finally figured out what the hell that weird little connector went to).
Just a small update this week, mostly rambling about progress on Project NB. The next one should feature Project NB actually moving under it's own power.
I should have already had this done, but it's been a busy week. I have it ready to go next week. All accessories are on, all belts are on the accessories, and the wiring harness is back in and most everything is plugged in. All of my coolant hoses are on the motor, including the pain in the ass hose that lives at the back of the head for the SuperMiata coolant reroute, and all vacuum lines except a couple that plug into the intake pipe are back on. Exhaust manifold is also back on. The only thing left to do is wait for some lift time, put the downpipe on so I can plug in the O2 sensor, and do the multi-step, ass-ache-sounding clutch bleed/pedal adjustment for the FM happy meal clutch. SO CLOSE BROS.
I got it bolted to the mounts and to the transmission last Saturday, and all this week I've been tinkering in my spare time. I also noticed that I left a part of the power steering bracket was left on the old motor, and I turned it in as a core (damn $500 core charge!), so I had to order one on eBay. I do have the exhaust manifold, AC Compressor, and alternator on, so hopefully tomorrow I can adjust the clutch up, throw the downpipe on, and at least fire it up for a minute or two. Still needs cooling but I'm not putting that back on until everything is checked out because it's so much easier to work without the radiator and fans in the way. Anyway, have some picture!
Finally, amirite? I decided to stop procrastinating yesterday and drop the motor in.
Like for real for real. I got my pilot bearing installed, got my flywheel bolted up, got my clutch disk and flex plate on. I just need lift time, and I should get that next week.
Now I need to decide on a car play head unit, because I can’t go back to not having it. I’ll do a ton of research this weekend and post up what I decide on.
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