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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 6:36 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
Here is the difference between the auto tunnel top and the manual surround.
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I enlarged the transmssion hole a bit and massaged the manual shifter surround
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Here is the interior now. Unfortunately when I installed the guages I assumed the ashtray was in the middle of the dash. Now that I have the console in the guages are offset by about 5mm. I might have to move them across, depending on how much it annoys me..
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The manual is a bit smaller than the auto but the same length
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Wheels would look nice with a polish...
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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 8:33 am 
Mild Cam
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Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Boy howdy, those wheels cleaned up nice...I couldn't tell they looked that good from the picture. I can't wait to see them on the 323...at this rate, your wagon will have showed up on my blog almost as often as my own car. :D

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:26 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
normally I have a mild dislike for mesh wheels, but those are hellatits awesome.

all of those piston motors are a bit hard to find now because everyone has thrown them away!

looking forward to further updates. :)

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:31 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
Camshaft wrote:
Boy howdy, those wheels cleaned up nice...I couldn't tell they looked that good from the picture. I can't wait to see them on the 323...at this rate, your wagon will have showed up on my blog almost as often as my own car. :D

Oops, emphasis should have been on the word would... those arent mine but they might look like that if I got them polished! I think they are an inch wider than mine too :D I'd love the 15x7 or 15x8's that were made back in the day, but with 4x110 you take what you can get!
I'll get a quote for polishing when I get them repaired


ewokracing wrote:
normally I have a mild dislike for mesh wheels, but those are hellatits awesome.

all of those piston motors are a bit hard to find now because everyone has thrown them away!

looking forward to further updates. :)

Yeah I hope they will clean up ok for my car. I'm not sure if I'll stay with the gold or try a different colour

I'm happy with the performance from the piston engine anyway. I dont really want to go any faster in a small old car. Feels fast enough already! The only enticement of a rotary would be the noise.

You need to get yours on the road soon, you've been going longer than I have :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 6:01 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
I had some spare time the other day and decided to do something about the rusty looking exhaust manifold.
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So a rub back and a bit of header high temp paint
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To match the exhaust I did a few weeks ago
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Looks like a bought one.
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Still need to clean up a few bits but the plan is to get the engine in this weekend...


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 6:16 am 
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Location: Australia
I've been gathering a few bits over the last few weeks.. I got a pair of universal joints which were surprisingly made in Japan
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The engine has been cleaned and I've replaced a few things. I'm not sure if I'll be able to hook the heater up or not.. the newer engines have bigger size hoses than the older ones. The older ones also have both hoses going into the RHS of the firewall and the later ones have a pipe on each side
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So close yet so far...
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Saying hi to younger sibling
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And I got my clutch cable today, from the guy I know as "Cam 323". I lol'd
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So I'm definitely going to put the engine in tomorrow after missing out last weekend. I should have all the bits here to get in on the road by monday, which would make me super mega happy. I also pulled down the spare 1.3 engine I bought, and it will be built up over the next few months.


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:42 am 
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Location: Australia
I got the engine in yesterday. Lots of bits to bolt on
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Custom tooling for removing the carby :)
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I pulled off the sump to check for chunky bits, blocked strainers and loose bearings. There were a few bits in the bottom which turned out to be the old seal and gasket. All the bearings were nice and tight.
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Cleaned off the old gasket and removed the strainer for cleaning
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Which looks sooooo much better than the dead engine
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They cleaned up pretty good. I ran out of time to get them dry and put them back on today
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Fitment looks alot better with the engine in. After I'm back driving and the suspension has settled I can work out how much to lower it
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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:56 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
Very nice.

The manual box will make it feel like a totally different car.

ps. Yeah, I've been distracted with my car, I bought a house and my Rover needed some major work and then my Kawasaki kept playing up, now the Pajero I was using as a daily driver has a major oil leak... it's never ending!

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 12:34 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
So last weekend It was all ready to go..
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Everything was hooked up, had to prime the fuel pump and checked the spark. It was turning over but wasn't starting. The spark was a bit weak so I replaced the ignition coil and still wouldnt kick over. We got out the compression gauge and got 25-25-0-5 :cry: put some oil in the bores and got no.1 back to 150 and no.2 back to 120. Piston rings are dead
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Sooo... I've given up for a while.

-Handed in the plates today and got a bit of money back. As long as I can get it reregistered in 3 months I won't need a full inspection. If it's after that I know I can pass again anyway

-Might try make one good engine out of the two I have.

-Not very happy with the reputable Mazda wrecker I bought it from in "good running condition" I need to give him a call still.

-I'm away for work for a week then going on annual leave so I won't be touching it till September at the earliest

-ps. poopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoopoo


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 5:04 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:44 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Canada
That sucks about the engine.

Don't get discouraged though. Mistakes do happen. If the wrecker is "reputable" then they will either exchange it for a good engine or take it back and refund your money. It is in their best interest to make things right. If they are good business people they will not want to have a reputation of selling bad parts, used or new!

My advise is to call them ASAP be calm and polite and I am sure things will get sorted out. The only thing you should be out at the end of the day is your time invested swapping engines.

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 6:31 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
Alrighty. Just got back from a couple of weeks on holidays and I'm keen to get back into it. 

This is what I've got to work with:

1) 1415cc UC that came with the auto gearbox, codename 1.4A.
This is the engine that I used for a month before the oil pressure issues from the clogged oil pickup. The crankshaft is worn and the big end bearings are shot. The camshaft is also worn and the head has been scored, but is savable. The intake manifold is a late type auto with all the emissions stuff blanked off. The exhaust manifold is a late type air injection with the EGR blanked off.
It's the one on the left
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The head looks new and has been skimmed before. The only issue is the scoring from the cam.
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Big end bearings
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And the crankshaft.
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2) 1415cc UC that came with a 5 speed gearbox, codename 1.4M.
This is the engine that I put in the car and found out it had no compression. I pulled off the head and there is scoring in the bores and a bit of corrosion on the head. It's also got a spilt valve. The camshaft is a good condition Crow Cam, it looks identical to stock though unfortunately. The intake manifold is a late type manual 1.4 with all the emissions stuff intact. The exhaust manifold is the late type air injection type. I'm not sure how good the clutch is either. 
Where it is now
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Bores are scored, it makes a squeak when you turn it over
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Corroded head , it has also been skimmed before
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Valve doesn't look too good
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Head is reasonable on the top, but the exhaust manifold is stuck on with some rusty nuts I can't get off
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3) 1272cc TC that came with a 4 speed manual, codename 1.3M. 
I pulled this one apart before finding out the other one didn't work. The car I got it from had no bonnet, and no.4 piston looked to have been filled with water for a period of time. It's an early 1.3 with a single row timing chain. It was all sludgy inside. The head is in good condition but the valves on no.4 were all rusty.
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From the refund of the rego and insurance I've got $636.92. The plan is to get all the work done for less than this so I'll keep a running total.

The plan? 
At the moment the plan is to get the crank from 1.4A reground and a new set of bearings. This will be put into block 1.4A because it was a good runner before, and had pretty good compression (about 130 over all 4). After that I'd like to rebore 1.4M and fit new rings and pistons so that I have a good condition spare.
For the head I'm thinking of either 1.4A or the 1.3M. Apparently you can get good results with a TC head on a UC block.
Other desirable but non essential modifications would be electronic ignition and an electric fuel pump and thermo fan.

I was lucky a few weeks ago when I saw the previous owner, she had found another part for me.. I had been looking for a good left hand blinker lens for a while.
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Having the boot full of parts does make it sit nice at the back. I'll try to get it like this when I get it running again..
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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 6:07 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 5:42 pm
Posts: 1
It's all about shed space, I think. Don't know where this leaves me without even a driveway. I'm not going to give up. Planning is everything, innit?


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:10 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
Posts: 780
Location: Melbourne, Australia
did you go back and have words with the wrecker?

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2011 5:05 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
I got the engine up on the engine stand and stripped it all to bits on Saturday. I was planning on taking some photos but I dropped my camera with the lens extended and now it's broken :( . I've got the crankshaft out and all the bearings and I'm dropping it off to an engine shop tomorrow to get it machined to fit some oversize bearings. I've also got to decide which head to use and get it rebuilt. While staring at the heads in a moment of contemplation i noticed that the engine I was running for a month was a hybrid 1.4block/1.3head, so I'm 100% sure that combo works now! The 1.3 heads have a bit more dish in the top of the combustion chamber and 1 less coolant gallery compared to the 1.4, which would seem to suggest a lower compression ratio?

Budget is up to $39.92 - two 5L bottles of coolant @ $9.99 and 5 cans of degreaser @ $1.99, which leaves $597.00


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2011 3:25 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
Posts: 780
Location: Melbourne, Australia
many years ago when I was younger and had hair, there was a big thread on ausrotary about the 4 cylinder 70's/80's engines from Mazda. Spac wrote up a big part of it, have a squiz on ausrotary for it.
From memory, the best combo was a D5 head on something else as the D5 had a better head design, I think the UC had the worst one.

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2011 11:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:42 am
Posts: 320
Location: Australia
Yeah I found those threads again the other day and bookmarked them. From memory you were in a few with your 1300.

Bit of a disappointing day today - my camera was quoted at being over $300 to fix, which is a bit hard to justify when I bought it second hand for $350 (retail was $850+) and the crankshaft is apparently also rooted. I didn't notice it before but the guy at the shop pointed out it had 1-2mm of wear around pistons 2&3 and he was surprised that the con rods hadn't melted to it or got heat affected.

What now? Well as of this weekend I'll have use of the garage again so the no compression engine will be coming out. I'd prefer not to mix and match the engine internals if it can be a avoided, so I'd rather do a rebore than swap the crankshaft between engines..


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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 12:31 am 
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Posts: 320
Location: Australia
Hmmmm...
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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 5:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
Posts: 780
Location: Melbourne, Australia
yeah, I did a lot of tinkering and research with the 1300. In it's last guise with piston power it had a D5 with a 5spd. I should have left it at that, but I broke a clutch cable, thought it was the gearbox and then it just snowballed from there into a rotary conversion. Became a huge money pit and was never as nice to drive afterwards. :cry:

Changing engine types requires an engineer cert. in NSW doesn't it? Otherwise I'd say go for the 626/121/929 engine family and bypass the TC/UC/D5 engines all together. A few headaches to sort out but you'll have a lot more power for little cost.

Otherwise, I'd say just find another cheap motor* from somewhere and drop it in.


*I used to buy an engine and gearbox for a slab of beer, now people want hundreds of dollars, bah!

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2011 2:35 pm 
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Location: Netherlands
That crank is fubar :?

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 Post subject: Re: 1978 323 wagon
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:25 am 
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Location: Australia
ewokracing wrote:
yeah, I did a lot of tinkering and research with the 1300. In it's last guise with piston power it had a D5 with a 5spd. I should have left it at that, but I broke a clutch cable, thought it was the gearbox and then it just snowballed from there into a rotary conversion. Became a huge money pit and was never as nice to drive afterwards. :cry:

Changing engine types requires an engineer cert. in NSW doesn't it? Otherwise I'd say go for the 626/121/929 engine family and bypass the TC/UC/D5 engines all together. A few headaches to sort out but you'll have a lot more power for little cost.

Otherwise, I'd say just find another cheap motor* from somewhere and drop it in.


*I used to buy an engine and gearbox for a slab of beer, now people want hundreds of dollars, bah!

Yeah sometimes it can be best leaving things simple I guess. All the money I've spent on these 3 engines wouldn't have even got me one half decent 12A so I guess I cant complain too much. It went pretty good* with the last engine with the auto so I reckon it's going to be a lot of fun with the 5 speed.

If you put in a non factory engine it will need to be engineered. If I was going to do a swap I'd get something newer like a B6 from an MX-5.

I'm not going to buy another cheap engine now. I'd rather spend the money to fix one up properly and know it is going to work.

*at least blasting around town and through the traffic to work. Highway was a bit painful with 3 speeds
Toyohead wrote:
That crank is fubar :?

Sure is !

Dad got his car out of the garage Saturday and I was getting ready to move my stuff around to put the yellow car in.

I had the bonnet up looking at the engine bay then decided to see if I could push the car back up a bit. Car didn't move much, bonnet fell down and jammed my fingers between the headlight surround and the bonnet. It's a reverse hinge bonnet so it slammed shut.
Kinda where the paint is chipped on the front edge of the bonnet above the headlight, but on the left side
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Luckily mum was at home and was able to rush out and pop the bonnet. Spent the next few hours with the fingers on/off ice and didn't get anything done. Hoping to get something done this week as Im getting off work early (only cause I start early too)


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