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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 9:28 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
There's always the comedian :lol: Where have you been, it's been awfully quiet without you about ! No more super Mazda's coming out of the RestoreMaz factory for us too read up on :( Has it been all picnics and no work down Chipping Norton way or you gone back to playing with Barbi and Ken dolls :lol:

Dilly set me straight with his setup BTW :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:28 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Ever thought of a Mazda 1000 coupe Dave ? I think they are one of the most under rated Mazda's of all time. I've sometimes thought of buying something like a Cosmo or R130 but I couldnt be bothered worrying about finding replacement parts. I think I've become more of a classic car lover more than a rotary car lover. A lot Mazda people have it all wrong, for whatever reason they feel the need to rotary power anything and everything with a Mazda badge.

Nothing major going on, bored of the car and sick of it taking so much space !

Dropped in to Dilly's place, he put aside a bit of his 90's memorabilia, I tried to get him to part with his bomber jacket and neon lights from from his Eminem rapper days, unfortunately he refused :( Pic 2 is a classic display of Dilly's dilligence, note the accent on top of the e. It's pronounced coup a, not coupe :)
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Seriously though, I needed an original board to have another made. As you can see from the underside the original board is there to make a good replica. I dropped it off yesterday to a trimmer in Sydney's inner West, should have it back in a couple of weeks. It'll be covered in a a rough grain vinyl which is very similar to the imprint on the factory masonite board. Pic 2, I also picked up some Cerium Oxide to polish out some scuffs from the passenger window. I'll give the rear screen a good buff as well unless I can find a new replacement one with a demister. I think the only piece of new glass available for these cars is the windscreen unfortunately.
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Last pic, I had new rear wheel arch covers made. I had a pair of originals but they had seen better days, no point using an original part if its in poor condition especially when the rest of the interior is like new.
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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:30 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
If you want different how about a 13b powered kingswood with fender mirrors, it could be the first holden allowed into the RestoreMaz workshop. I think I already know your answer :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:05 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
A bit of maintenance, the left vent cable sheath had broken. You can see all the parts here once you pull it apart.
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Pic 1, top cable broken, bottom is replacement. Pic 2 Clip undone and vent shaft pull out slightly. Don't loose the spring and selector ball !
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One the rear side of the spring shaft is a screw for adjusting air vent selector tension. Remove it to make installation easier. Pic 2, all together except I couldn't get the spring and ball ball where I needed them to be so apart it comes again.
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A close up of the selector ball which is really a cylinder. Pic 2 success putting it together 2nd attempt. Don't put too much pressure on the spring housing otherwise you'll break the plastic welds.
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All together....
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Cable is secured and assembly now ready for installation. Pic 2, prior to that happening the inside is sprayed with wax. I then attach a hose to the wax gun and spray right up the inside of the A pillar where repairs were carried out. Everything is rust proofed especially where repairs were carried out. The cowl area was 100% clean and retains the factory sealant as removing and replacing served no purpose This car wasn't a rust bucket like most people think, I think it had less rust than most of the average Rx3's out there. Crash damage is another topic altogether :)
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Vent in place and so is the firewall sound board.
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Fan unit installed, in Pic 2 adjusting the shaft on the heater unit... still needs sorting. I think one of the bell cranks was installed incorrectly when I cleaned out the unit a few weeks back. Will reference another unit I have in storage when time permits. Heater control cables all work aside from the fresh air cable for reasons stated above.
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Sorting out the rest of the cables for the engine bay and cabin. More than one set here. Thanks to Rick (Mazbitz) for a perfect drivers side engine bay harness that will save me some time.
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Pic 1 drivers side harness from Rick, just needs a cleanup perfect otherwise. Pic 2 passenger side engine bay harness... what a mess, great way for a project to go up in flames ! This side has all the ignition electrics.
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Close up of repairs needed, it will look a NOS item when I finish with it. A few mods are in order, I have some pics of some group Nc ignitions so will modify cabling for Hi Energy ignition if I ever get my act together. All engine bay plugs will be replaced so the harness looks new. I have to go back to a supplier who I think had the correct connectors, this time with the harness to compare plugs. I thought I had a Rx3 coil bracket, on close inspection this looks to have been modified to fit... a hacked Rx4 one maybe ?? The top coil bracket has been chopped as well ](*,) Pic 2, the dash harness looks OK, needs a clean as well though.
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Another pic of the mess, won't need ballast resistors with the electronic setup. Pic 2, the Savanna heater controls wont fit the Australian centre surround as the mount holes are further apart. Will need to mount the heater plastic plate from the front (won't fit through the hole from rear) and drill a couple of small holes to mount to the backing. The mods wont be seen and still allow use of either heater control setups without hacking anything. Some of you are probably thinking why don't I fit a Savanna dash and be done with it. Answer is simple, as good condition as its in it still looks 40years old. I will spend probably $300 or so dollars bringing it too an acceptable standard before using it in any of my cars, for now it stays at the storage depot. Second reason is I have a perfect good standard one that is ready to use without further delay, I have no real preference as long as whatever I use looks new. Think of it this way with everyone wanting the JDM stuff Im being original by using original :)
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Pic 1, 2 rolls of butyl layered underlay arrived. This will help make the inside a little nicer. Pic 2 sorting out cabling, and the dash is coming together.
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I got sick of sitting on the floor doing the cabling when testing electricals so I installed the passenger seat, looks real good and comfy with the new padding :) Pic 2 I still had the original parcel tray carpet so that got reused after a run in the washing machine. It was a strange feeling sitting in the car, I've only ever worked on it nothing more. I haven't sat in an old Mazda for a good 10 years. So what did it feel like ? Well, too be honest it felt like sitting in an old bus ! As much as I like it it feels very primitive, there isn't much holding these cars together. I'm happy that I didn't go overboard with the mechanics, I think it would have ruined the car otherwise. It's not that I don't like powerful cars, I'd have a high power engine in something like an R34 4WD Nissan where you can actually use it without the car handling like barge twisting and flexing everytime you sink your boot into it ! The Savanna Rx3 doesn't offer much more technology than an old horse and carriage, think about it... chariot rear suspension from Roman days, boxed up tin for a chassis (model T Ford stuff), worm and shaft steering, and an old bus steering wheel, but I still like it :)
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Rx7 coil bracket that I will modify for my car unless I find the correct bracket. The top Rx7 bracket fits the bottom one that came with the car (bottom of photo) but I suspect its a modified Rx4 one. Ignitor heat sink from a Rx7 that Im thinking of using if I can find a suitable place to mount it so it looks factory.
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From the rear you can see the ignition modules.
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Thats it for now... wish I had more time to work on the car instead of the odd day here and there.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:01 pm 
JNC Enthusiast

Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:26 pm
Posts: 780
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Yes, but the odd day here and there can be good therapy and at least you won't get burnt out from it.

I had the same thing with one side loom in the engine bay. Half baked wiring running all over the shop.

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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:26 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Interior harnesses are quite good. Engine bay ones are a mess but have started fixing them up.

First step was chop off the dodgey additions, remove all the plastic connectors, bag the firewall connector and put them in the dishwasher for a cleanup on the hottest setting :)

I can now work on them without needing a shower, they came out spotless, look respectable even though they still need repairing. I'm waiting on a bunch of supplies from the UK to fix them like new. I couldn't find anywhere local that carried the bits I was after. I'm sure they are available locally though.

I'll put some photos up once all the brass spades and bullet connectors arrive, until then there isn't much more I can do too them. Doing all this work should result in all electrics working 100% of the time with hopefully no bad intermittent problems.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 6:37 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:15 am
Posts: 323
Location: Adelaide
Did I read correctly? you put your bare ended wiring looms into the dish washer? I would have thought moisture could get up the copper into the inner of the cable?

Thanks for the updates as we all need motivation and something useful to read!

Great progress as always!


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:55 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Yes you read correctly young grasshopper :lol:

After a dishwasher cycle I can now touch them and not get grease all over me. The plugs that go into the firewall were bagged to seal them off. The rest of the harness didn't bother me. They are coated in plastic insulation so are water proof. They look 100x better now. All will be shown when my parts arrive.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 3:29 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 3:37 pm
Posts: 77
Location: Australia
Looking good mate well done, not long now!

I've got a spare coil bracket that I had repainted black by Rick mazbits when I painted the car but I upgraded my coils so no longer needed, if it's the bracket your after you more than welcome to have it saves you time repainting etc :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:05 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
I'll grab the bracket :)

A bit of motivation for people building Rx3's, spotted a Savanna Rx3 on Sydney's streets recently.
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Quite a few getting around Australia these days. I look forward too the day I can drive mine on a nice sunny day as well.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:26 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 3:37 pm
Posts: 77
Location: Australia
Love the Colour of that car was one of my options I narrowed it down to when painting mine, after some flicking through boxes of spares I found the bracket I used, I've posted the pic here as with the amout people looking here you can enlighten myself and others what model the bracket the car is off?
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Might need a lick of paint but up to you if you want it still or not
Matt.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2012 4:24 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Another update, I had high hopes that I'd have the interior wiring complete, consoles installed, underlay applied to the floor and the carpet fitted and trimmed ready for the trimmer to sew up the edges. With one of those rare weekends where all the planets aligned (which means I can spend all day on the car) I thought I'd accomplish all of the above before flying out again.... would you believe I fell short of my weekend goal :lol:

Interior wiring is simple but a ball breaker task ! The worst of the wiring I think is now done. The interior needs another day to finish off the rest of the cabling then that's another thing to tick off the imaginary list which always seems to grow rather than become shorter.

Engine bay cabling and looms will be covered in detail in a future update. I've had 3 people ask for me to cover whatever I do there. It should be much easier as everything is a lot more accessible. The looms I've decided to use there are a bit of a mess however the rubber firewall grommets are really good. They are the original ones for this car as well. If your looms are worse than these then you have real problems :lol: I do have better ones but the grommets arent so good. A days work and they'll be repaired without too much trouble.

On to the update.....

I'll start with the engine bay looms, they be completed in a future update. As you can see they are far from perfect. I'm waiting on a few things to arrive before they are repaired. Too say they are filthy would be an understatement.
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Lots of bodge connectors, not the sort of thing that makes a car reliable.... all the dodgy stuff has to go..
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Next I start removing the nylon plugs from the connectors and bag the head ends. Left and right, the car has an engine bay loom on each side. Why did I bag the head ends ?? I popped them in the dishwasher for a good steam clean, they came out as something else, spotless. I now have a good base to work from. I'll continue on this in a future update. Pic 2, damage to the centre meter gauges. The Red/White wire was missing. I suspect someone connect the each to one of the AMP meter terminals.
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This is the loom that connects the centre guages, needs a little work. I look a replacement length of White/ Red wire from an old main loom. I will replace the entire length of cable not add on too the cut length. Make sure you use the correct gauge cable. In the 1st photo you can see a piezo buzzer that I will use as the over rev buzzer. $3.95 is a lot more appealing than $200 OEM unit that you will never see. The loom will be modified so the Savanna Fan panel works like factory. The Savanna fan unit is pictured in the photo as well. Pic2, to clean your soldering iron a damp cloth is all that's required.
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I couldnt find the correct large spade connectors for the heavy gauge cable so I reused the old ones. I carefully remove the spade from the socket then remove the solder. The heavy gauge connectors are soldered, light gauge are not. Pic 2, replacement cable is tinned before install.
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Crimped, soldered and installed...
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Crimping tools that Im using. You can see the other end of the White/Red cable needs finishing. Pic 2, both heavy gauge AMP meter cables had new ends fitted.
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Cable ends are soldered as well for better connectivity... Pic2, centre harness almost done, now to modify for the lights on the Savanna fan panel.
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Made a new earth lead to replace the burnt track on the back of the centre gauges. Pic 2 leads all installed, Black / White is installed closest to the clock. Thanks to those that helped by looking at their cars :)
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Making the leads to power the Savanna Fan control lights. I got the correct cable from an old main loom. I then crimp the connectors into place, then solder for extra security.
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The correct nylon plug comes from you guessed it, an old loom ! The new connectors are then pushing into the nylon housing. The only way you'd tell that it wasn't factory is by the solder. Pic 2, the other end is connected to the main connector on this loom.
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Once it's pushed into place you'd never know, the gauge harness is now Savanna ready :lol: Pic 2, at this stage I'll be using the Savanna fan controls with the Australian spec consoles. Mainly because they are so good they must be used. Pic 2, the Savanna fan controls are slightly wider so you need to mark and drill 2 extra holes to hold the fan controls in place. The unit can now bolt altogether with a lot of swearing. Getting the cables to operate right will take a little time, not a 2 minute job.
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I had too swap the clocks around due to the replacement having a different electrical plug. I ended up repairing the original which had a missing stalk.
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The stalk removed and then installed in the original unit.
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Clock done... all the little jobs that aren't immediately apparent ! Pic 2, most of the interior wiring is now repaired and sorted. I lost count on the number of times I installed them only too remove them. The centre gauges and glove box are now permanent :) Radio is connected as is everything else :) The drivers cluster isn't far off from being permanent either, just routing the remaining cables, all repairs to the interior harness are complete. Clutch box will need too go in very soon so it can all can be finalised.
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A couple of close ups of the consoles in place, I'm very happy how it all looks.
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The hard cabling side is all done, next finish off the drivers cluster, install pedal box, over rev buzzer, door switches... then underlay, carpet and seats :) Once the engine bay looms go in I can test everything properly, interior will be finished first though.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2012 5:41 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Buzz3n wrote:
Love the Colour of that car was one of my options I narrowed it down to when painting mine, after some flicking through boxes of spares I found the bracket I used, I've posted the pic here as with the amout people looking here you can enlighten myself and others what model the bracket the car is off?
Image

Might need a lick of paint but up to you if you want it still or not
Matt.


Thanks Matt for the offer but I am going to pass on them as I already have something very similar. The bracket doesn't look R100, Rx2 or Rx3. If I were to have a guess I'd say Rx4 bottom and Rx7 top as I have the same base bracket and the guys I bought my car had Rx4s as well (somehow I ended up with their unwanted Rx4 junk as well).

Here are some photos of 10a and 12a Rx3 ones. Thanks Rohan :)
The 10a Rx3 has a ballast resistor over each coil, the 12a has both ballast resistors located over the one coil.
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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:33 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Most of the wiring work is now complete I'm just waiting on a couple of people to get back to me regarding one of the contact styles. There's probably a couple of hours left as far as cabling goes. When its all finished I'll post up some photos.

I started fitting out more of the interior. The new rear wheel trims have been fitted, they look much better than the original ones which were well past their used by date. I've also fitted out the carpet retaining the original mat style instead of using one piece moulded replacements. I used a modern short plush pile carpet instead of original loop pile mainly because I think it looks much nicer.
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The carpets will be removed and sent to an upholsterer to sew up the edges and to fit a heal pad. I've marked out the edges that are to be sewn. Pic 2, I still need to black out the centre of the nosecone and the inner nosecone side panels.
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Not the best of photos but I ran a buff down the side and rear of the car, just need to go over it with a swirl remover and a wax. Looks pretty good I think. Pic 2, the hood lining while is pretty good it is 40years old. I got it to fit 100% except for the rear C pillar area. The material looks slightly stretched in that area. There is too much material to pad out so what I will do is unstitch the plastic C pillar retaining strips and pull the area in. I've already pulled it taught with my hands to simulate what I want to do and it will work. Once I do that the hard plastic C pillar trims can be screwed into place and the rear panel trims can go on.
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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:04 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2009 6:45 am
Posts: 71
Location: netherlands
I love your work gypsy, but there one thing that i don't understand.
You put so much effort in restoring your car, it's spotless. Why not painting the inside of the car?
I know, you will never see it, but if it should be my project, it Would annoy me forever.

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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:50 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Good question :D

The most valid reason too me was that it was a pointless exercise unless the interior was sandblasted to begin with otherwise I'm doing nothing more than priming and painting over a not so perfect surface. The only interior that was sandblasted was the rear parcel shelf from memory. It was in a red oxide primer but I went over the join with the rear panel with some sealing epoxy so it would never rust again.

The interior was 100% rust free so it was arguable at the time whether there was any benefit. The main down side was that some previous owner had emptied a bucket full of cheap bitumen based body deadener on the inside which I have removed. You will notice the front floor pans are very clean and the factory metal sealant is in very good condition. I will be cutting tar sheets and laying them down over the top.

Given that parts of the interior are glued in places like hood lining and other trims, other bits are covered by tar sheets then there isn't much metal exposed.... My preference would be to paint the interior but unfortunately I have left it 10 steps too late. It can still be done but it would be one hell of a masking job :lol:

Hindsight is a funny thing, if I were to start again some things would be done different like painting the interior just for completeness like you say. That is what the next project is for, I already have a couple more Mazda projects in the back of my mind :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 9:35 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 13, 2009 7:27 am
Posts: 350
Location: salt lake city
updates?

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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 8:47 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
Nothing really has happened, I'd almost forgotten that I own a Mazda. Too cold, too busy, too lazy and planning to go away shortly :)

I've tried sorting out a few bits and pieces which don't require much effort on my part.

I've made my own parcel shelf from coreflute, turned out pretty good I think. I gave up waiting on the trimmer, if I'm ever contacted I'll pick it up otherwise I wont bother. It is curved like the original one and covered in vinyl, looks original which is the main thing. I didn't want a flat board like some people do.

I replaced the front bailey channels with the other type I mentioned in my build, took literally all of 5minutes to install. Got the bailey channel from Clark Rubber. The windows wind up much better now.

Also bought some sponge rubber sheets to make tail light gaskets as Im sick of dealing with either "Mr Personality" in Melbourne or the other places in Australia.

I made my own door seal rubbers as well as I couldnt find a local supplier that I trust. I would have got them from Spectrum but I got sick of waiting and they cant tell me when they'll be in stock again. I got lucky while looking through the bargain bin at Clarke rubber. They had a first Gen Rx7 door rubber and a early model 323 coupe door rubber. Bought them for $30, cut the underside down and bonded the 2 ends together. They fit perfect, all old Mazdas must of used the same rubber profile. $30 as opposed to approx $160, think I did very well and you'd never pick that I modified them. It was a 30min job for a big saving :)

Got some stuff like lock gaskets, pedal rubbers and a few other things from Mazda.

I had new backboards made for my 10a genuine door trims, they arrived not long ago from Sydney.

I had some more sand blasting done, just small bits and pieces that I'll paint up at some stage.

That's about it, not very inspiring. I'll put something together later on.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 5:49 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:15 am
Posts: 323
Location: Adelaide
:tu: I wondered how long we had to wait for an update, looking forward to your next installment.


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 Post subject: Re: 1973 Mazda Rx3
PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 5:10 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:09 pm
Posts: 592
Location: Australia
If you and others hadn't hassled me it would have been another 6months :lol:

Well not much has happened of late, I've been super busy at work and doing other things. Every now and then I'll spend a couple of hours trying to finish things off. Its a bit of a shame seeing as it's not far off being completed. Going away soon so not much will be happening.

Interior coming together, first tar sheets are layed on the floor. There was no need to redo the rear as the sheets were good enough to leave in place. Pic 2 cutting to shape and then they are stuck to the floor. A heat gun is used to mould the tar sheet to the floor. One side of the sheet has an adhesive.
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Tar sheet layed down then a quality underlay is put over the top. The underlay has a butyl middle layer to make things more comfortable. These old cars are pretty noisy and can get hot inside so anything that helps is good. I cut the carpet and had a trimmer dress up the ends and sew a heal mat on the drivers side.
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I'm currently collecting bits and pieces to have the seat belts reconditioned. The chrome place did a shocking job. I will fill the pits, linish the repair and chrome plate them myself. The other bits are OK and only required to be zinc plated.
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I gave up waiting on the trimmer to build me a parcel shelf so had a go myself, this is my second attempt. The first attempt obviously failed. Shaping the masonite proved too difficult so decided to use corefute sheet.

Pic 1 I used 5mm coreflute sheet. To get the required curve I slice though one side which allows it to curve, much easier than using masonite board. Pic 2 tracing the pattern from an original.
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I laid down the remaining underlay on the parcel shelf. You can see its not the normal cheap stuff.
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After making the pattern I glue thin foam under the vinyl and the foam to the corefute using a spray adhesive. I then lay weights over the top to get rid of the air bubbles.
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Trimmed down and ready to install. I got luck when Savannarx3 offered me the rubber strip that sits along the rear parcel board shelf edge along the rear windscreen area. Overall a good result I think.
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