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Thread: Project RA21 1974 *Updated 5/23/13*

  1. #1
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    Project RA21 1974 *Updated 5/23/13*

    Here is my Project 74 RA21. I started this project a few years back with not much money. I'm in Ft worth, TX and there are very very few classic Celicas around here. I loved the 1st gen celicas and found a 77 Lift back rotting in a field. I bought it for about 200 bucks US and drug it home. It was fairly complete but badly rusted and in need of much rust repair and a full rebuild on engine and tranny. I became disenchanted with the lift back body style and the big safety bumpers so I traded it for a 77 coupe. I ended up in the same situation, badly rusted body in need of tons of metal work and virtualy unsavable. I pirated as many parts as I could and scraped the hull. Then I cam across a copy of a copy of a copy of the TORC newsletter. In it was a classified for a mildly beat down 74 from a lady in carlsbad CA. I called her up made a deal with her for 600 bucks, FedEx'd her the cash and sent a transport out to pick it up and bring it back here. Here is a pic of the car while still in Carlsbad before I received it.





  2. #2
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    I got it back here to TX and ripped out the automatic transmission and installed a 5 spd gear box, then drove it around for a few weeks and then proceeded to rip it all apart. Here is Kingtoy helping with the teardown for the body work.






  3. #3
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    Now the car is home and undergoing it's continued restoration. I have the engine bay painted 2001 Mercedes SLK Bahama Blue. And I have covered all the brake lines and am currently tumbling and polishing all the enginebay hardware. The brake booster has been restored and tonight the steering box gets it's treatment. Since the roads out in Cali are better than here in texas the steering and suspention are surprisingly fresh and tight. The body work is done. The wipers arm, motor and access holes have been filled and shaved. the badges are gone as well as the side markers. Rocker panel holes are filled and all the minor rust is taken care of. Once the engine bay is complete it's time for the engine drop in with will consist of a Hybrid 22r with dual weber side drafts. In the pics the engine bay may look a little scuffed but it's actually just dusty. I try to keep my work are clean but you know how that goes. I'll post more as it happens.

  4. #4
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    Nice story and pics. Documenting is definitely one of the harder parts of a restoration and something I bet we all wish we spent a little more time on. Looks like you're doing fine job so far!

    Are you planning on painting the exterior to match the engine bay?

  5. #5
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    Fort Worth, Tx
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    Absoloutly! The final exterior paint will be done as soon as the engine is in and running. My friends at the paint shop requested that the car be able to move in and out of the shop under it's own power. Thanks for the compliment, I have tried to take pics periodicaly as I complete things. I have always thought it was cool when you'd see a car at a show where the owner had documented his restoration in pictures. Really gives a sense of apreciation for what the car was and has been transformed into. Once the paint is done, she's off to the upholstry shop to start the interior.

  6. #6
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    Waldorf, Md.
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    It's great to see the old Celicas getting some restoration. It's a shame that for years these cars were viewed only as appliances which means there are not too many left. Great looking color for that Celica.

  7. #7
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    The OC
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    Nice looking project! Glad to see people documenting their projects and sharing them with other enthusiasts!

  8. #8
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    Fort Worth, Tx
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    Thanks guys. I am also tumbling and re-plating every nut and bolt on the car. Tumbling/polishing and finishing all these small parts, nuts and bolts is very time consuming. It may take me a long time to finish but then are any of our projects ever really finished?

  9. #9
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    I remember when he first got that car. It is so cool he is doing all of this. He actually loaned it to me for a while a couple of years ago to drive while my 78' Hilux was in the shop with major a engine problem. I will also take full credit for being responsible for starting him down the road of the fanatical Toyota owner.

  10. #10
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    Fort Worth, Tx
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    He speaks the truth.......

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