Again, very little progress on the 2g Talon since little side projects or preperation keep popping up. I'd been scouting for a CF hood much like what I found for the Spyder and sure enough I found one locally. It's pretty ratted right now since it has a coat of failing primer on it. If luck is on my side, I'll be able to bring it back enough to have it cleared and sprayed just like the Spyders- all translucent body matched.
Pictures of the hood progress will ensue.
Ordered a set of flush hood pins for it too, just like the Spyders of course.
After months of throwing stuff around in the attic with Project Spare Parts and the 95 Eagle this thread covers, I took a bit of time and got organized. This isn't so much so I can have space or parts for the 95, but rather so I can start back up on some other projects. Low and behold, there are a ton of parts up there (including the entire new body for the 95) along with a bunch of "house stuff." Sadly, the effort on the 95 may be held for a bit longer as I am eyeing the Spyder's engine build more and more.
Christmas Eve I had to work and assumed we'd be slow. Rather then waste the day standing around the shop, I was able to pull my car in (an extreme rarity) and knock a few items out.
The passenger's window now no longer rattles when fully lowered.
The driver's door check-stop is now replaced and the door opens smoothly without that "Pop-Pop" noise that sounds like the car is breaking itself.
The battery tests fair. I was almost certain it was bad. As it turns out, either I'd left the alternator belt loose, or it worked its way loose. I was getting a bad squeal from the PS pump around turns and taking off. Low and be hold, the PS belt was nice and tight and the alternator belt was the one slipping. I'd re-tensioned it a few days ago but driving the car with it loose like it was drained the battery. I re-charged it over a few days and the car fired right off on Christmas eve morning without any trouble after sitting for a few days.
Lets see- I did upgrade and modify a few things under the hood. I replaced the 2g BOV with a non-crushed 1g, pulled the recirculation tube out of the turbo inlet and installed a knock-off Hallman MBC. I've got it dialed up to 14 PSI and will do some additional test driving. I don't intend to beat on this car, but the gate was opening at 7 before and the car actually felt dangerous to drive.
I have started to clean up the hood. I have the majority of the initial sanding done and have a hefty amount still left ahead of me as I step paper grits from 400-2000 before I can begin buffing it.
Lets see.... a few things left for the car before I'm truly finished with it until spring; fix the sagging head liner and re-check the fuel filter. I may have an extremely small leak from the banjo fitting's crush washers. Luckily those are easy to replace if I do find that it continues to get wet. I have the sway bar links here at the house already, so I'll likely try to slap those in and see if they don't eliminate the suspension noise.
Pictures from the short drive I took when the alternator belt was slipping badly and the stock wheels back on for light "winter time" duty.
I'm not a fan of the GA body. The paint is pretty rough too. I'm very much looking forward to having it painted and hanging the 2GB Talon parts.
For now though, heres what I'm starting off with on the CF hood. In these pictures, most of what you see is failed primer. The previous owner sprayed it because the clear coat had gone bad. I've put a few hours into it and will have an update with the step-by-step progress once I've finished it.
I'll leave you with a cliff hanger and say I'm getting pretty darn good at fixing CF.
Right then.... so here's how the CF hood repair has gone thus far.
It started out pretty rough. I've brought it back about as good as I'm going to get it before clear can be laid down. I suspect this hood will drink quite a bit due to some of the imperfections left over, but I'll either lay a few coats on myself or entirely leave it up to my painter.
I bought the hood for $100. It was covered in a failing primer coat. I attempted to lift it with brake parts cleaner and quickly gave up on that idea. Anything more caustic such as air craft stripper would damage the gel coat. My best option was to sand it.
I took the sanding in steps and started off extremely course. Each stage takes a bit of time, but with patience, nets results. Here is my progression:
320 hand, dry
320 palm sander
The primer has now been completely removed. Wet sanding with the palm sander was then done in the following stages:
I then finished off with a foam pad an polishing compound, followed by a buff head for the residual, then finally a few diaper rags.
There is so much wet sanding to do. I shot this somewhere around the 800 mark.
I don't think I could do this without a palm sander. I may have done my last hood without it, but I'd never attempt it again. It really makes the stages go by in about 1/10th of the time.
Foam buff head on a drill, ready for polish!!!
It's by no means perfect, but a lot of that has to do with the oxidation of the gel coat. Under clear, it's nearly undetectable.
So for about 3-5 hours of work and $100 plus supplies, I took a hood from this:
Car threw a P0505 for the IACV. It's been acting a little weird, so I ordered a new one to slap in.
I also took it out for some longer drives and it'll run right around 210 on the highway. Turns out my perception of what the gauge is showing was a little off when I balanced it with a scan tool. I'm still not thrilled by how much the needle moves, and it's pretty darn cold right now, so I'm going to have to continue monitoring what the car does until I know it'll be solid in the spring time. For shits and grins, I ordered up a thermostat 10° cooler then factory in the off chance it stabilizes the gauge a little bit.
I got the gas light to come on. There's a little trouble there since I still showed 1/4 of a tank. I ohm tested the gauge and it passed. I had another gauge cluster around so I swapped in the fuel/temp gauge into my cluster to see if it's a binding issue in the gauge. Unfortunately, I now have a completely full tank of gas, so it'll be some time before I can continue to investigate. I guess the sending unit floats could be binding on something, or the sending units are failing, but my fingers are crossed that the gauges fix both the temp and fuel level issues.
IACV arrived earlier this week along with a few other tid-bits. I'll be getting to installing that stuff later today.
The front end makes noise and the car rides very firm. I've already done the front sway bar links and bearings to see how much they eliminated from the noise, but it's pretty clear the control arms are an area to focus on. Since this car was someone's daily driver, the suspension has ~116k miles on it and needs some attention. The goal for this car has been to make it look good, but leave the underhood performance alone (for the most part). What I really want it to do is handle well, thus the good sticky Potenza S04's and consideration of what I would do with the suspension...
Since my bonus came through for gaining additional ASE certifications last fall, I went ahead and ordered up 6 new front control arms, an Energy Suspension master kit and Prothane sway bar bushings. I'm hoping having the arms already preped with the new bushings can reduce down time.
I'm waiting for March or so to order new struts. In years past, KYB has done a $40 mail in rebate for the months of March and April. I've already got a good source to get them for a great price, but $40 is $40.
Alright, so some really simple stuff happened today, but I feel like I made some good improvements.
First, the new IACV went in. I also swapped in the newer battery from the Spyder project since it's down for the count and will likely be replaced when it's time to fire it back up.
Did a few drain and fills on the cooling system once again and installed a 170° thermostat for kicks. I didn't expect the car to run cooler, but it does delay the temperature rise a little bit longer. While this car doesn't have a reason to run hot, it favors the 210° area and I've plumb gave up on trying to figure it out any more. At least at this point I know it's at it's peak efficiency on stock parts.
Another big accomplishment today was cleaning the windshield. Yes, this sounds like it's really easy, but I held off until I had fixed up the sagging front part of the headliner. Now that it is re-glued, I went to town on the front glass. Using powdered Comet and a steel wool pad, the exterior got a hell of a cleaning, then two stepped with rain-x and buffed out. Test driving showed that the interior side of the glass was the problem. My eye sight sucks to begin with, but the years of neglect and sitting matted the front glass to a point it was difficult to drive at night. An old detailers trick I learned for cleaning the windshield was pretty obvious, but it speaks volumes- "Just get it really clean." Duh! But using my garage door and the head lights, I got the windshield as clean as the new one I had installed in Project Spare Parts. What a world of difference it makes too! If you ever get tired of a car, just clean the SOB and it'll change your mind drastically.
So, today's list was new IACV, Different battery, different thermostat and some flushing, fixed the head liner and cleaned some glass. Test driving went fine, but the damn car still wanted to idle high once up to operating temp. Low and behold, the BISS screw was backed out many, MANY turns. I pulled the noob trick and just cranked it back in unabated until the "park" idle dropped to an acceptable range. If the car give me any sort of idle issues, I'll look into it more, but it ran fine (just high) before adjustment and still runs smooth after.
The 6 new front arms, Energy Suspension bushing kit and Prothane sway bar bushings arrived some time last week. I'll get to those eventually, but I have more then a month until I can (hopefully) order a set of KYB AGX struts with what seems to be an annual rebate promotion.
Great news, the battery I swapped in seems to be holding a charge much better. The car fires right up even after it's been sitting for a few days. While the old battery tested fine, I'd need to charge it a little if the car sat for more then 3-4 days. I'm adamant about not not taking anything from the Spyder, but since it'll be down for the count for a while and the battery was good, I'll plan to buy a new battery for it when the time comes.
After driving the 95 a bit more, the idle and drive quality is greatly improved with the new IAC. Given the suspension noise, I have chosen to keep the driving to a limited amount until I can get the new ball joints in. I don't think they are anywhere near a point of complete failure, but I'd rather not risk it.
Finally, I revisited the gauge cluster. After swapping the other fuel gauge in, a bulb burned out around at the 2 o'clock position of the speedo. Super annoying, but I put up with it for about 2 days of driving. I knew I'd get back into the cluster at some point so I could enable one of my favorite DSM easter eggs- the fog light indicator.
I didn't quite have the exact molex connectors that are necessary, but the one's I did seem to be working perfectly. I like the marker/fog look without the headlights on. The fog lights also don't really do a damn thing aside from aesthetics, so I can never really know if they are on or not. This little mod solves that problem entirely.
Some updates to come later- I pretty much just have the suspension stuff left on my list, have the PDR guy take care of the dents and contact my painter.
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