Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 100
  1. #1
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts

    Modernbeat's '92 Special Edition black-on-black subtle is the name of the game build

    Editing this entire thread to remove the Photobucket images and either upload them to the forum or link them to Smugmug.

    SNC11643.jpg
    So, this is not my first Miata. And not the second, or third, or fourth… It’s my seventh. But, it’s the first one that was slated to be a fun street car. All the others are either competition cars that had to follow a rulebook, beaters that were either parted out or tracked, or kept stock and driven then sold. So, all those fun parts I’ve bought since 2004 and haven’t used are going to find a home on this car.

    The theme I’m trying to keep is OEM-Plus. I don’t plan on any radical modifications. No huge body modifications, no turbo, no stripped race like interiors. This is not a JDM build. I’m not a fanboi and will not stick EUNOS badging on just for the sake of being JDM. I want to keep its identity as a Miata while mixing and matching the best of the OEM parts and a few subtle, well built aftermarket parts. Also, I’m not a fashion horse. Name brands for the most part don’t impress me, and I don’t care about them on the car. While there ARE name-brand aftermarket parts on the car, the parts will mostly be chosen because of their quality, utility, aesthetics and sometimes because they were first to market – not strictly because of the label. Another thing I’d like to do is keep the visible parts period appropriate – from ’89 to ’99.

    I really started this build on a fair condition ’91 that I bought a few years ago. This car came from a charity car auction that I attend. It was a Crystal White ’91 with an early hardtop and a Hard Dog Sport rollbar. I won the bidding and took it home for just over $600 including title, registration and taxes.

    SNC10913.jpg

    The white paint was in poor shape and the vinyl stripes had petrified and cracked. The interior was sunbaked, though the aftermarket grey softtop was almost brand new. I started collecting parts for it, including a good white fender, new white mirrors, all the rubber hoses, the hardtop edge and window rubber trim, gauge cowl, radio surround, Murakami M2-1028 trunk lid etc… Then the economy took a dump and when NASA had to make cutbacks, I lost my job at Boeing. I offered the white car and the parts I bought specifically for it up for sale and it left within a month to live a life as a never-street-driven track rat at Motorsports Ranch Houston.

    After relocating to Dallas and getting my financial life together, I wanted to finish what I started. This time instead of using whatever car I happened across, like the white car, I was going to find the “right” car – which for me was a ’92 Black and Tan or a NA6 in British Racing Green. I watched the local (Dallas, Austin, Houston) Craigslist posts and even set up an RSS feed for different searches. Eventually a fairly nice ’92 SE showed up for $3000 including a lot of extras and the original hardtop. The hardtop was important, as I’m not really a convertible guy and would rather a coupe. During inspection I noted that the car had sat for a LONG time. And it had sat under an oak tree and had a lot of paint etching and hard water deposits that the seller tried to cover up with a lot of detailing glaze. The front bumper had never seen a license plate and was dent free (good) but the softtop looked like a piece of beef jerky (bad for him). The seller and I haggled over it and I bought it for a very good price.

    Here’s the only photo I have of it from that day.

    2010-09-03211733.jpg
    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:05 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  2. #2
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    The very first thing I did was get license plates. My pal and I are both pun fanatics, but most of the really good plates I wanted were already taken, or not available. Texas only allows six characters on their plates. I ended up getting “NNNN” which is a pun for “foreign”. I also ordered a custom bent right hand side Garage Star license plate bracket as I wanted an offset plate mount, but didn’t want the plate to be on the same side as the front bumper MAZDA sticker.

    SNC11374.jpg

    Plate jealousy struck my friend, and he also ordered a custom plate. He’s an antique dealer and buys the majority of his stock at estate sales. He selected this plate which reads “You Die – I Buy”. Morbid for some, but everyone we know in the antiques business finds it hilarious.

    IMG_0777.jpg
    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:06 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  3. #3
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    After that I immediately started looking for black interior parts, as the tan interior was the first thing to go. The dash, kick panels and seatbelt tower panels came in first from Harleybutter on MiataTurbo. Then the main carpet came from a track car build out of Houston. A nice pair of NA6 cloth seats came from a Craigslist ad out of Waco and a couple pair of decent floor mats came in (one for using, the other for showing) from wanted ads. I eventually got the rear carpets from PartsGroup. I bought a pair of one-year-only ’96 black electric-window door panels from Second Chance Roadster.



    Oops, got two right side kick panels! Harleybutter took care of it like a pro.



    Then I bought another rent house in Houston and was gone for a few months while I remodeled it. I got back to Dallas in January and started on the interior swap.





    I got a good deal on a few rolls of Raammat, ensolite padding and spray glue over the holidays. Here’s the tub with about a half roll of deadener in it. The ensolite went in over the deadner, then the original pads went in last.



    While the main carpet was in fair condition, it was filthy. I took it down to the car wash and powerwashed it and let it dry for a week before it went in the car. I swear some previous owner must have spilled at least two dozen coffees in the passenger footwell. The powerwasher water ran brown for 30 minutes.



    I accidentally ordered the bulkhead carpet from a ’95 and it was moulded to go around the ECU that was behind the seats. I picked up another carpet out of a ’90 my girlfriend bought to make a track rat out of. But, that carpet was filthy, full of cat hair, and was fuzzy. The filth and cat hair came out with a powerwash. I took a heatgun on low setting to the carpet to “erase” all the fuzz sticking up out of the carpet. When I was done it looked nearly new.
    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:27 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  4. #4
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! AntiochOG's Avatar
    Drives
    Red 1990
    Location
    Oregon
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    399
    Thanks Given
    9
    Thanked 2 Times in 1 Post
    Any idea how much the sound deadening material you added weighs? Did you just do the floor or did you add it other places too like the doors? How much of a difference does it make in the interior noise when driving on the freeway?

  5. #5
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    I added just under a roll of RAAM mat. From memory I'd guess it weighed around 25 lbs. I mostly did the floors and tunnel (2 layers) with a single layer on the back bulkhead and 85% coverage on the rear package tray. The doors got about a square foot inside on the outer shell and a little less on the inner panel. Except the doors, all those areas also got a layer of thin ensolite padding, then the stock sound deadening pads and then the cleaned up carpet.

    Sound deadener will not quiet your car, at least not at the level some expect. It simply eliminates/reduces the nasty noises your car panels/chassis/etc will make when your speakers or suspension cause them to vibrate.

    It cut down on the tinny feeling and reduced some of the noise and heat, but didn't eliminate the tire noise or the droning exhaust. It did work better than I thought it would. I'd do it again.

    For the proper uses of sound deadening, and what to expect of them, read the Sound Deadener Showdown.

    http://www.sounddeadenershowdown.com/cgi-bin/index.cgi
    Jason McDaniel

  6. #6
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    While I had the dash out, I was going to remove all the airbag components.



    I cut into the harness to use the switched power from the airbag to power an auxiliary fuse box. Here’s the yellow power wire under the HVAC stack and the black radar detector cable under the blower.



    The fuse box is going to power a radar detector, an iPod charger and power locks. I ran wire up the windshield to the V1 mount.



    Here’s some of the wire I removed from the car. Some airbag stuff and some vintage Autopage alarm stuff. Anyone want the alarm? I’ve got two remotes, stickers and some literature for it.



    Turned out the new black dash had two broken tabs that connected it to the corners of the metal brace. I fixed them with epoxy. It doesn’t look like much under the dash, but it’s invisible from inside the car and it will keep the dash from squeaking.



    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:32 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  7. #7
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    About this time I started working on the gauges. Some of the parts I had bought way back when I had the white car. I wanted an all black dash and to clean up the gauges as much as possible without looking like they were aftermarket. Think Porsche 911 for inspiration. For reference, here’s what the original ’92 gauges looked like.



    Here’s the ’90 Canadian gauges that I took the tach face from. The ’96 cover in the background was the only one I had and the clear cover was heavily scratched. I wet sanded it and buffed it until it was nearly perfect.



    The scratched ’96 cover.



    Here’s the UK market speedometer face that AndyK on MX5Nutz sent me.



    And after assembling the parts from four different gauges, this is what I ended up with. The gauge hood is the original painted one, but it’s got paint issues and two broken tabs, so it will be replaced with a new one.

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:37 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  8. #8
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    And just for reinforcement, what I started with:



    What I ended with:

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:38 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  9. #9
    Idling - Listen to it purr... zoom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    38
    Thanks Given
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Hm, I should probably buff the gauge cover on my car. Nice work I love black and tan.

  10. #10
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    Here’s another thing I wanted to try. When you remove the airbag system, the clock spring remains and it’s got three wires that run through it. One is for the horn and the other two set off the airbag. I crimped spade connectors on all three. One is still for the horn, the other two will lead to a button on the steering wheel to mute the radar detector.



    I made the horn female and the two for the radar male to keep them organized.



    It was cheaper to buy this mute button kit off ebay than to source the components, have them mailed and assemble it myself.



    I cut it into two and crimped connectors on the section that will go into the steering wheel. The other section will go under the dash, spliced into the original airbag wiring and plugged into the Valentine power network.



    Here’s the little microswitch that will be adhered to the back of the steering wheel.



    So, during all this steering wheel fitting, I felt the wheel was too far away. I purchased a few Nardi spacers from Ej86 on Club4AG. I couldn’t use the bolts, but the spacers were worth it.



    I had to cut a groove in one of the spacers for the mute wire to pass through. I could have done this with a file, or a grinder, but used the opportunity to teach a friend of mine how to use a mill.

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:44 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  11. #11
    Super Moderator WASABI's Avatar
    Drives
    1991 British Racing Green
    Location
    Amesbury, MA
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    10,529
    Thanks Given
    6,199
    Thanked 1,460 Times in 793 Posts
    Jason,

    I really like the all new blacked out gauge cluster. The new hood looks great. Nice work.

    -Jim

  12. #12
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    Thanks Jim.

    And back to our regularly scheduled program...

    I bought this ’97 hazard switch back when I had the white car. Here it is in the NA6 radio surround. This surround has a hole in it from the alarm’s LED. I have another good surround on it’s way.



    And installed.



    Here's the mute button on the back of a steering wheel spoke.

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:46 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  13. #13
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    I spotted this pair of mirrors in a photo of a car on MX5Nutz. Garath, the owner, had bought it to fix up and sell. He was willing to sell me the mirrors, but needed a pair of silver RHD manual mirrors in addition to some cash. I sourced a set of silver mirrors on Ebay.UK and had them shipped to Garath. He then shipped them to me.



    Here’s the photos where I spotted the mirrors. I didn’t know if they were GHO or M2 mirrors. But the Garath verified they were Vitaloni tops.





    And the silver RHD Ebay.UK mirrors that I partial traded for them.



    I sanded and painted the bases and cleaned and conditioned the plastic bits. I’ve got some original style security fasteners coming for them, but until then they are on the car with some Phillips heads.



    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:49 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  14. #14
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    During the interior buying spree I never got a black knee panel for the dash. But, I had two non-airbag panels. One from a Canadian part out I bought years ago that had a couple extra holes in it and one from a UK part out that supplied a number of parts. I took the Canadian one with holes and trimmed it to fit around the US market combo switch cover.



    I did the standard foamectomy on the bottom and the back of the black seats I bought. The fabric was in good shape, but faded. I used black fabric spray dye to bring them back, but the dye mostly faded again. I replaced the completely blown up original speakers with a pair of Blaupunkt 3.5 inch full range speakers. These seats were already wired for headrest speakers, so I mapped out the wires and corrected it so the headrest speakers would work correctly.



    I bought new covers for the seat rail bolts. As far as I know, these were only used in the Special and Limited editions. They’re just one more piece of trim, but I am trying to minimize the exposed fasteners. Wow, that seat rail was dirty when I took the photo. It’s clean now.



    I mentioned the knee panel from the UK partout. An unlucky guy over there had a really nice 1996 Japanese import S-Special. It really was a great looking car until he had an accident and totaled it. During the part out I bought a few items from him.

    In addition to the knee panel, I bought a good condition radio surround – which is exactly the same as a US surround, and not worth shipping by itself, but I was buying a decent sized box of stuff, so he sent it along.

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:51 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

  15. #15
    2,000 rpm - light wheelspin, no bog here! modernbeat's Avatar
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    436
    Thanks Given
    8
    Thanked 141 Times in 63 Posts
    This EUNOS rear window protector. Looks blue in the photo, but it’s really black. I've become a huge fan of it despite some doubts early on. It is handy to quickly stash stuff out of view when leaving the car and it gives the rear bulkhead a really finished look.



    The sunglasses holder to replace the ashtray.



    And MOST importantly, his seat belts. These are the non-airbag belts I needed. And they were in black, and in great, unfaded condition. He also included all the hardware, as the guide and plastic cover is different between NA6 and NA8 belts. Remember that these came from a RHD car, so the left hand belt has NO wear and because it was a low mileage car, the right side looks very good.



    Here they are installed.

    Last edited by modernbeat; 10-06-2017 at 05:54 PM.
    Jason McDaniel

Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •