Cams AE85 build from NZ
07-26-2010, 12:52 PM
Post: #1
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Hi guys. Here's my AE85 build from New Zealand. I've had a couple of build threads on other forums before but this is really where it should be - being an AE86 specific forum and all... So first up is some background on the project to date. Hopefully this follows as a story in reasonably chronoloigcal order.

I got obsessed with the thought of owning an AE86 when I was still at highschool (7 years ago) and even though they were far less popular (and therefore less expensive) back then; there was no way I could afford a decent track car. So in 2005 I got hold of a stripped out AE85 for very cheap and decided this would be the base of a ground-up track car build. This was the state the car was in when I got hold of it:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]


It didn't take me too long to realise that I was in far over my head from both a skills an monetary point of view. The body was in very bad shape and it was going to be a nightmare trying to piece back together an entire car from a pile of pieces that I didn't even take apart. Towards the end of 2005 I came across a driveable AE85 and picked it up for $1500NZD (pretty cheap for anything AE86 related). It had no warrant of fitness but didn't need too much work done to make it legal. The original car immediately began donating parts in the way of a LF guard, indicator lights and pop-up unit as the car had been in a minor front left accident. I also built a rough as guts under diff exhaust (as it had none to start with), got both front and rear bumpers reconditioned, fixed some minor rust (bootlid, around windows, etc) and got the thing on the road. It was only an AE85 with auto box, drum brakes and the 3A motor but it felt great the few weeks I had it on the road. The good points about this car were it was complete, had the facelift interior, bumpers, and lights and wasn't insanely rusty.

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

In early 2006 it was time to start pulling it all apart. Plans at this stage were to replace the running gear and suspension, strip the interior, install a half cage and go and have some fun on the track. So first to go was the engine and auto box:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 12:57 PM
Post: #2
Cams AE85 build from NZ
While all this was happening I bought a damaged AE101 Levin and grabbed the 20V Silvertop out of it. This was actually my old car so I knew that the motor was in good condition. The plan was (and still is) to get the car running with the NA motor and then build up a more powerful motor later. This would allow me to worry less about turbo manifolds, intercooler piping, and the like and more on actually getting the car running.

Because of these plans I wanted to lay a solid foundation in the gearbox, diff and brakes department. The natural choice (for NZers anyway) was to therefore use a W55 gearbox with a custom bellhousing and a hilux diff with the mounts swapped over. I got hold of a good condition gearbox and new bellhousing from a company called Reardrive. The bellhousing was expensive but this was offset somewhat as I was able to swap a T50 bellhousing that I already had. Once I had the gearbox I drilled/cut the approriate holes in the firewall to accept the clutch master cylinder and grabbed a manual pedal box from the parts car. From what I remember the clutch master and slave cylinders were surprisingly cheap.

Next on the todo list was to find a suitable clutch as the original gearbox was automatic. In keping with the bullet-proof driveline theme I got my hands on a late model 4AGZE 224mm flywheel with OEM friction and pressure plates. I got this from Karl Skewes - one of the original AE86 drifters in NZ. I now had enough parts to bolt the engine and gearbox together and test fit it in the car. While I was at it I installed the spigot bearing. Clutch fork is W55, can't remember what the release bearing is at this stage... This was a good day:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

After test fitting the engine I found that the shifter location was slightly too far forward as the W55 I bought had a mid-mount shifter on it. I decided to enlarge the shifter hole in the body to make it fit (I now regret that slightly). The only painting I wanted to do was paint the engine bay so I wouldn't have to pull the engine out later on when I repainted the rest of the car. I spent days cleaning and prepping the engine bay. The first lot of paint got ruined as I was painting outside and it started to rain. I nailed it on the second try however. The engine bay was now a nice satin black:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

This was in March 2006. While the front suspension was out while painting the engine bay I bought a set of D2 suspension for it. It was not great but it would be enough to get me on the track. It wouldn't be hard to upgrade later on when money allowed. I started putting things back together:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:16 PM
Post: #3
Cams AE85 build from NZ
During the second half of 2006 not a lot happened. I was busy with University study and other projects/girls. I decided that I would use a MegaSquirt to run the engine as I enjoy electronics and couldn't afford an expensive Motec or Autronic. I couldn't justify spending a lot of money on a mediocre ECu like a Link either (they are a lot better these days however). The MegaSquirt would allow me to ditch the distributor so no firewall bashing would have to take place. I also modified the 20Vs cooling system to work in RWD format. I know there are a lot of people that believe that the 20V should not have the coolant path changed but I feel that its a reasonable tradeoff for a neat and reliable cooling system. Therefore I modified the back of the head to open up the flow path from exhaust side to intake side. I made the channel as large as possible using an angle grinder and die grinder (sorry no pics). I made simple blockoff plates for the rear and side of the motor out of 5mm aluminium. As this is a track car I am not running a heater core so no additional connections needed to be made.

I like(d) the idea of running an electric water pump as this would allow me to electronically control the water temperature and do away with the thermostat. The idea is to provide a restrictor plate to mimick the flow restriction of the thermostat and by sensing the water temp I will electronically regulate the speed of the water pump. As there is no thermostat to bypass the raditor when cold the pump will always idle at a minimal flow level to prevent localised boiling and hot spots. I am still not certain that this is the best way to go about the cooling. Any ideas/feedback would be great. I got one of these http://www.daviescraig.com.au/Electric_W...tails.aspx. It will sit between the bottom radiator outlet and the original water pump. The flow direction is cold water out of the radiator is pumped into the front of the block. I modified the 20V water pump to simply act as a connection to the block. The water line actually goes in the middle of the alternator belt:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

In the next summer holidays (start of 2007) I sourced an early Hilux LSD diff. I sent the diff head away to be reconditioned by Steelie Gears here in Auckland and set to swapping all of the mounts from the standard AE85 diff across to the hilux. As it was from an early hilux I was lucky and did not have to get the housing and axles shortened. I made a jig out of MDF and piano hinge to get all of the mounts lined up in the correct place for welding. The photos explain this better than I can:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

I then fitted it into the car to ensure that everything lined up:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

Then painted and reassembled the whole thing. Painted with a 'CRC Black Zinc' rattle can. It got treated to a new set of bearings (pinion and main wheel bearings) and new axle seals. I got the axles redrilled to 4x114.3 and turned the hubs to the correct diameter for the brake rotors by angle grinding them while spinning the axle by hand. It worked really well! It's now a 95% brand new diff:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:25 PM
Post: #4
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Around this time I bought a set of brake calipers and rotors from a S14 Nissan Sivia K's. 280mm rotors up front with 4 pot calipers should do well on this little car. My road car is a S14 and with good pads I have never had brake fade on the track so I figured they would be a good choice here. One of the drawbacks of the S14 calipers is that they are cast iron - so they are relatively heavy. I plan to swap to Z32 calipers when the car is running. The difficult part of this conversion is building the mounting brakets for the calipers and making the system work with the front rotors mounting over the hub, rather than behind it like the original setup. The rear caliper brakets weren't too bad will be machined from a flat plate and machined to the correct thickness (12mm). I designed the brackets on Solidworks ready to be laser cut along with the front ones. No pics sorry of the brackets but here is the front rotor comparison (note that these are AE85 rotors, not AE86 ones):

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

I also machined the front hubs down to fit inside of the S14 rotor. These need a steel ring machined to locate the rotor on the hub correctly. As of yet (July 2010) I have not yet done this.

Somehow an entire year went by and it's now the start of 2008. Next on the list was front suspension and brakes. I finally got a chance to modify the front struts for the D2 adjustable setup. The strut inserts did not fit correctly so i had to modify the big nut that holds them in to place. I turned it down in the lathe so it was shorter and had less wall thickness. This sorted the problem and the front spring/shock assembly was complete.

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

Now that the car was effectively rolling again I set about doing some panel work. The original bootlid was fairly well rusted out and I loved the look of the TRD ducktails so I killed two birds with one stone and bought a
fibreglass bootlid with the ducktail molded in. This was manufactued by a local company here in NZ. This saves me some weight and I never have to worry about rust issues again! This is how the car looked in June 2008:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

I repaired, filled and primered 2 guards ready for final paint and started on some rust repairs over the next couple of months. I found a significant amount of rust in the right rear wheel arch and in the area behind the bumper. A lot of this had been repaired badly in the past and had been covered with bog/bondo. Pics:

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:27 PM
Post: #5
Cams AE85 build from NZ
As the car was oginally carburettored the fuel tank needed to be modified to accept an EFI fuel pump. My car will have an in tank fuel pump that will act as a lift pump to a surge tank. I already have a Bosch 910 external pump for the main pump and a Sard fuel pressure regulator. It just so happened that while I was doing this part of the project that my Dads Jeep Cherokee developed a problem where it would run fine when cold but would die after 20 mins of running. It turned out to be the crank angle sensor but we mistakenly diagnosed it as a faulty fuel pump. The upside of this is I now had a perfectly good in-tank pump looking for a home.

I took the standard AE85 fuel tank pickup and bent the pipe to work with the Jeep pump. I'm still not totally happy with how this works as I am dealing with two different pipe sizes and it just doesn't fit quite right.

To get the wires into the tank I used an awesome fitting from a VN Holden Commodore fuel tank. It is a plastic fitting that has two wires passing through it and is o-ring sealed. If you ever need to get wires into a fuel tank I highly reccomend these fittings.

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - Cams AE85 build from NZ]
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:27 PM
Post: #6
Cams AE85 build from NZ
That's all I've got time to post tonight. There's plenty more pics to come though! I'm going to grab the next couple of posts too so this can stay in one block at the start of the topic.
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:27 PM
Post: #7
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Reserved....
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:28 PM
Post: #8
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Reserved...
Find all posts by this user
07-26-2010, 01:39 PM
Post: #9
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Hey! lovely project man! keep us update!

1985 AE86 (ハチロク) Levin - Summer time daily driver
Find all posts by this user
07-27-2010, 11:37 AM
Post: #10
Cams AE85 build from NZ
Looking great!

Are you doing the rust/panelbeating work yourself?

http://www.super86.co.nz
Find all posts by this user


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Ae85 Minidaxman 4 828 04-20-2021 09:57 PM
Last Post: banpei
  OST-050 - a VERY special build oldeskewltoy 49 17,403 01-05-2019 07:03 PM
Last Post: oldeskewltoy
  d3nso's little AE86 N2 build d3nso 27 24,497 11-13-2017 11:42 AM
Last Post: mad.matt
  Beams Levin build mannix20vt 5 6,184 01-27-2016 12:39 AM
Last Post: mannix20vt
  Drift missile build [FIN] TuGeTu 7 17,347 11-09-2015 06:13 PM
Last Post: mad.matt

Forum Jump:


User(s) browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)

Contact Us | AEU86 | Return to Top | Return to Content | Lite (Archive) Mode | RSS Syndication