LankyKiwi's Rally-flavored SP20

VersaTuner - Tuning Software for Mazdas
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
Air box installed

After a bit of faffing around the airbox setup is finished and installed!


(sorry for the blurry shot)


Made from scrap aluminium it bolts in to factory captive nuts and seals off 95% of the filter from the engine bay, the overflow bottle was relocated on a custom bracket and some silicon bends and alloy tube connect everything together. It's got rivnuts holding the top on for access and even has a hole for the air temp sensor!



The pod filter sits just behind the headlight and draws air from the lower guard area, I might build a proper air diversion panel and replace the spotlight with an intake at some point...

Performance wise there isn't too much of an improvement, the butt dyno says there is a bit more pick up at around 3500/4000 rpm.

The best bit is the noise! Under load it makes a fantastic rrroooooooottt that's almost louder than the exhaust, Reminds me of my old Escort with it's twin choke carb :)

Next on the project list is....
Not much really, I really want new seats and the idea of a supercharger keeps popping up for some reason ;)

Over the Christmas break I want to tidy the exterior up, finally fix the front bumper and a few other areas before deciding what to do next.
 

grffn

Contributor
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'02 P5
very clean job, looks good man! bout to put my aem short ram in tomorrow. kinda excited to hear the difference from stock :D
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
Happy New Year!




Happy new year to all on this wonderful forum!


Finally a decent shot of the Mazda 6 wheels on the car lol, taken from the back as the front bumper is primed and ready for new paint (at long last :) )

Plans for early 2019 include more aesthetic upgrades/fixes, new wheels and tires, and replacement rear shocks.

I've snagged a cheap pair of '01 WRX seats to try out, if they work it'll be great, if not then I'll sell them on to my Flatmate for his '98 WRX.
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
This holiday season has been a busy one for this little car!

The peeling clearcoat on the front bumper finally got the better of me so I stripped it all off and repainted it with some colour-matched spray cans. I took the whole bumper back to base coat and smoothed out some of the road rash that it had collected over the years.



I did everything in the driveway with a few tarpaulins for dust control and shade



The end result is by no means perfect, partly because I ran out of clearcoat :( But it takes the front of the car from a ugly peeling mess to something that looks decent from a distance!
I also painted the grilles satin black and re-polished the headlights for an extra visual lift

With the paints out I decided to try painting the dash rings, to make them seem a little more fancy and up-market. Tamiya Gunmetal brush paint was used, with a steady hand and a fine brush!


I really like the colour and am tossing up whether to paint all of the interior plastics the same colour, thoughts?

Next up came the seats:

2001 WRX seats from a local Subaru wrecker that were too good a deal to pass up:



Installation required bending the front tabs, swapping the seatbelt clasps over and a bit of swearing to get it all to fit. I see the main problem with these seats, they do angle towards the centre of the car and don't sit as nice as the factory seats, However I've put a couple of hundred kms on these now and haven't had any comfort issues, they have fantastic support for the corners and look almost factory.


Lastly, and most importantly:



:D Evo 5 17x7.5 OZ Racing F1 wheels!

Another bargain as they are a little damaged, but nothing a coat of paint won't fix :) I'm thinking white with red logos because that colour combination works ridiculously well on these cars.
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323


A quick snap with the new wheels, looks great and they don't poke as much as I thought they would.

The rear struts have finally given up so it's time to replace them, got a good deal on a pair of struts but there are no replacement top mounts to be had anywhere in the country! Luckily there are some in Australia and shipping is free...

Also, who makes poly bushes for these cars? I want to work through all the bushes eventually, starting at the rear and moving forwards. Any good brands for bushes?
 
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2003 protege 5
Cr3 motorsports used to have whiteline and pedders i think. There was also super pro bushings. I believe they were from Australia. There was a thread on here once before about redoing the rear trailing bushings but I cant find it yet
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
Thanks guys, will have a look at the options around

Unfortunately it seems like the off-side wheel bearing has decided to pack it in, it's squeaking away while moving and all signs point to the bearing. I don't have a press so can't do this job at home!

It just means more money on maintenance and a more waiting for the fun stuff like bushes :(
 

pcb

The Diagram Dude
V
2002 mazda protege 5
... I don't have a press so can't do this job at home!
I managed to change my bearing myself with a big socket and a sledgehammer.

Or you could remove the knuckle yourself and take it to a machine shop with your new bearing and have them press in the new one.

That should save you quite a bit in labor cost.
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
I managed to change my bearing myself with a big socket and a sledgehammer.

Or you could remove the knuckle yourself and take it to a machine shop with your new bearing and have them press in the new one.

That should save you quite a bit in labor cost.

I did think about doing this, and here is a workshop next door to work that would do the press work...

But knowing my luck with parts, something would go wrong and I'd be without a car until it's fixed and I don't fancy a 25km bike ride to work!
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
Woohoooo, the squeaky front wheel is fixed!

It even stumped the mechanics a few times, they thought it could be the brakes being unbalanced (and it turns out I had the front pads installed wrong in the first place)
Turns out the wheel bearing had failed unusually, it was only rough in one spot and it rotated fine everywhere else, the shop replaced it in a few hours which was great.

It's so nice going for a drive without the SQUEAK SQUEAK SQUEAK at low speeds ��
 

Riot_Polizei

Comp Engineering Student
V
2002 Mazda Protege5
Was the telltale metal tab facing the wrong way? Last time I did my brakes, I learned that the pads indeed go in a specific way.

Isn't it nice to drive a 17 year old car without abrasive squeaks or clunks?
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
Was the telltale metal tab facing the wrong way? Last time I did my brakes, I learned that the pads indeed go in a specific way.

Isn't it nice to drive a 17 year old car without abrasive squeaks or clunks?
Oh don't worry, this old girls still got plenty of clunks and rattles!

Yep, it was the tabs. The pads were packaged in pairs, not LH/RH pairs as you'd expect, but inner/outer pairs.


Lesson learnt!

there's an SE20 sedan at a wreckers, does anyone know if there's anything worth grabbing on it? All the body kit is gone unfortunately but there's a set of extractors and maybe some other goodies
 
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2001 Mazda SP20 323
The hardware store

You know how sometimes you go into a hardware store for a can of paint and walk out with a circular saw but no paint?

That's kind of what happened this weekend.

It was meant to be a quick trip up to Auckland to see what the pick-a-part yards had, I knew there was a few SP20s that I could grab the rear control/trailing arms from, and a few mazda 6 wagons that were going to donate their rear wiper, even a Subaru WRX I was going to relieve of it's swaybar links for a flatmate.



Of course it started bucketing down as soon as I parked at the first yard, but it cleared up (kind of) and this unmolested silver BJ2 SP20 donated it's control arms, I couldn't even budge the trailing arm bolts unfortunately. nothing else interesting there...

The next yard had a BJ1 SP20 with a sweet AutoEXE (or clone) grill, which I grabbed, forgetting that BJ1 and BJ2 grilles are slightly different shapes. Oh well it'll look cool on the wall until I find a 4WD BJ1 to build...

Then there was this:



A Japan/Aussie market SE20 sedan, essentially a Pro5 in sedan form with all the good suspension and the 2.0L engine



Ooooooohhhhhh




Woohoo! A full set of Tokico Blues, lowering springs and a massive 25mm front swaybar (Racing Beat or Progress?)
Three hours of wrenching in the dirt later and this is the haul:



All for the paltry sum of $270! The control arms were another $100



All cleaned up and waiting for me to get some funds and time together for a(nother) suspension rebuild! Funnily enough I'd already replaced the rear shocks with new OEM style units about 2 weeks ago, talk about timing.

Completely forgot the wiper arm and the swaybar links :D
 

Riot_Polizei

Comp Engineering Student
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2002 Mazda Protege5
Man, what luck! I crave a full set of tokicos, but know darn well that they'll be used and possibly be blown. Enjoy them!

Also, you're braver than I for getting that front sway bar out. I've hear nothing but warnings about getting to it.
 

grffn

Contributor
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'02 P5
Wohoho, great finds man! Solid pick ups with the tokicos, you're a lucky guy..
I've heard cases of people upgrading the front sway bar but complaining that it creates too much understeer.
And just like w/ Riot I've heard it was a pain getting the front sway bar out.

Let me know if the understeer thing is true once you get that installed!
 
Scored on those Tokico Blues with RB springs!
Hate to say, but ditch that front sway bar. Its a PITA to install/uninstall and yes, understeer is a problem. When I learned the old MSP autocrossers were using the stock P5 front sway bar and getting better results, I removed the MSP front bar and reinstalled the stock P5 bar. Have never looked back. Much more neutral feeling and just a better feeling overall. The misconception for a better handling car (seems to be) is to make everything as stiff as can be. Not entirely true. I learned the hard way and wasted a bunch of money installing the largest sway bars I could find. Progress, RB, both 19mm and 21.5mm AWR sways, and I always go back to the 19mm RB bar. For me, it seems like the best balance for these cars. jmho
 

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