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Thread: HarryB's Strato blue NB2

  1. #31
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    The great thing about them is their weight, or rather the lack of it!

    As you saw, I bought a set of "lightweight" frame rails for my NB2, but really puzzled on whether I should install them or not. My car already has all the Sport braces, but some extra stiffness would be welcome. The thing is that I wonder if it worth the extra weight, effort and most of all the 20 holes (and the associated risk for rust) in my pristine floorpan. Anyone used them in an NB2 than can chime in? Car is a DD, with some occasional trackdays as a bonus.

  2. #32
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! Greasemonkey2000's Avatar
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    Imho, framerails and fender braces are the two MUST have braces for NA/NB's...add in derlin door bushings even though they are not really a brace per say although similar benefits are achieved. The framerails not only add rigidity but they protect the flimsy factory frame rails and give you good jack points.

  3. #33
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Cheers, with people giving so good feedback I will most probably install them; was afraid that I would get almost negligible stiffness back as a result of having all OEM braces in the latest (relatively stiff for a Miata) NB2 chassis, but seems that this is not the case.

  4. #34
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    I went on and installed the Elise S1 seats I purchased few weeks back; actually I installed only the driver's' seat in order to decide if I like them or not. Did some DIY seat mounts and I really consider making the drawings public, so others could save some hassle. If I decide that the seats will stay, the mounts will be laser-cut for a clean OEM-like look. Do not have any photos yet, but I will be back!

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  6. #35
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    And of course, I forgot again to take some photos of my newly installed seat; I will remember eventually. Messed a bit more around with my interior. Decided that I like the clear lighting on my switches more, so I went on and removed the orange condoms from all of them. This meant removing the stereo surround as well (to get access to the heated seat and headlight beam height ones), so I grabbed the chance to give a proper cleanup to everything back there. I found the beam height switch a bit intriguing, as this one does not use a regular NEO3 bulb as the others. I had to take off the rear half of the switch (pressing in the tabs) and take the switch board out.



    Just grabbed by the pins and (carefully) pull it out. You can see the bulb on the right corner.



    This is how far out you can get the board without damaging anything.



    Front side of the said switch with the fascia removed. Bulb goes on the bottom of the pic and it's kinda tricky to get it back into its' hole.

    Et voila!





    I am really pleased with the end result, next step is to take the HVAC panel out and replace all bulbs with LEDs.

    You might recall that I did not like cool white footwell LEDs at first, so I had a pair of warm white Festoon bulbs on my way. They arrived today, so I changed those as well. Cool on the left, warm on the right (obviously).



    And another one of the "warm" side



    New LEDs are extremely strong and I think I prefer them over the cool ones, what do people think?

  7. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to HarryB For This Useful Post:

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  8. #36
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    A thing I wanted to do since day one was properly cleaning the windblocker net. 11 years of dust and smog have accumulated on it and it looked like crap. I did gave it a good clean (or as good as it could get) while on the car the first week I had the car, but then I postponed taking it off and give it a proper clean. So today was the day. I removed it and took it upstairs. It looked like that on the beginning:



    So I completely took it apart, as I needed to remove the speakers and wiring, and took it for a bath. Some hot soapy water and a soft brush did the trick. After drying out, it received the vinyl & rubber care treatment and looked like this:



    Might not be obvious, but it is night and day compared to what it was! Since I was in the whole washing business, I decided to unbury my tonneau cover and give it a go as well. This piece was really really bad, it had a LOT of dirt on it and some red and blue stains which looked like pen or marker of some sort; it was so bad that I have been thinking f giving it away for a while now. Thank god I did not, and after quite a lot of effort, hot water and soap, it started looking good, albeit not perfect.

    Fitted on the car (for the very first time):



    And I finally remembered to take some pics of my Elise seat.





    There are some fingerprints on the back that I cleaned right after but forgot to take a proper pic. It really bugs me that I have two different seats and that my "test" seat mounts are not properly painted, but I bear with that till I get a definite decision on whether I'll keep those or not.

  9. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to HarryB For This Useful Post:

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  10. #37
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Having been away for about a week on a business trip, I really missed working on the car, so I was really eager to get back to it. However, the weather had different plans (it was raining all day and I do not have a closed garage), so I decided to work on my hardtop a bit (which is in my living room for a little more than 3 months now ). As you might recall, when it was test-fitted, it leaked past the side windows, on the "b-pillar" seals. Having tried every possible adjustments on the latches and frankenstein catches, I had put it down to seal adjustment. Have been postponing that until today, where I removed both side seals and adjusted their metal retaining rails. I was able to move them out around 5mm on the vertical part, which I assume (and hope!) that will solve the problem. Since I had the seals out, I sprayed them liberally with vinyl & rubber care and they came out like brand new! Items still left; do a rebuild on the latches (take them apart, clean them, respray and lube up), change all bolts as most have seen better days and apply a real window tint so it looks the same as the rest of the car (and for added UV protection for the hood), and then I am (hopefully) ready for the winter!

  11. #38
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Things have been awfully busy lately, so no time to work on the car. Just tiny bits here and there when time allowed. Window tint was applied and HT installed, albeit it gave me a good headache, as I could not get it to seal properly on the corner where it meets the car body/door/window. Searched a LOT and it seems like a fairly common issue; I have thought a DIY solution out of it, which I will document and get back for reference once I get some time. That being said, the HT is watertight, but not airtight above 120-130kph which is irritating.

    An issue with idle droop when headlights were on came up, and was solved using the GND/TEN method and idle screw adjustment. Adding to mishaps, a guy decided that he wanted my parking spot on a supermarket lot, so he backed into my rear bumper, chipping the paint. He later moved on denying he did it, but eyewitnesses (and photos) convinced him I had a case, so his insurance will fix that after all.

    In the meantime, I hunted down various creaks and squeaks and managed to scare away quite a few. The latest were today, as I realized that the PO has not installed the two nuts on the right taillight. I took apart the whole boot cover and carpet, cleaned up everything, removed the filler neck cover, installed rubber grommets (it was clearly rubbing and vibrating in one place), washed the carpet and reinstalled everything. I need to find 4 new carpet clips though, as I missed 3 and had a half-broken one as well.

    Before:



    After:





    Really liked the cleanup, so I am thinking of removing all interior carpet, clean up and add some sort of noise isolation in the shelf behind the seats, as well as on the transmission tunnel.

  12. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to HarryB For This Useful Post:

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  13. #39
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Worked my way out of the hardtop seal problem, so I think I should post it here for future reference. Here's what was the issue initially:



    (Yes I have my tonneau cover installed under the HT). About 5mm gap between the HT side seal and the car body, which created an awful whistle past 120kph. I found a small store near my house which stocks any type/size of rubber seal possible, from simple flat or round rubber foam to make-specific seals and sell them by the length. I bought various versions, as they are useful as grommets as well. The one suitable here is a flat "ribbon", 40mm wide and about 10mm thick. I removed the HT seals, measured, cut and placed an approx. 50mm long piece on each side, beneath the bottom seal "foot", with the bolts going through it. This is how it looked when the seal was placed back:



    And this is how it looks installed:



    Still not perfect, but 100% better than before!

  14. #40
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Last bits of the weekend, a really good vacuum and cleanup of the interior. Then my OCD kicked in again, so I had to change the tunnel side light trim pieces. They were most probably off of an NA or early NB/NB2, so they were darker than mine.



    Hopefully the PO has kept the blanks, so I used the darker trim to mark cut lines and cut the blanks at the same size.



    End result:



    Silly bits that make me happy!

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  16. #41
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    A small update to conclude 2015; small cause busy as f3$%k working..

    Anyway, I ordered a custom handbrake and gaiter boot from topgaiters at UK; great quality soft leather, and they managed to match my interior colour perfectly!



    Really happy on how these turned up, I have yet to install the door handle covers, will update here as long as I do. Plus I recommend these guys to anyone; everything fits as it was supposed to, they are willing to do custom stuff, quality is really good, they are really quick and pricing is great. Oh, and they did send me free samples to colour-match everything, and replaced my (mistakenly) tan gaiter boot for free, without even asking the old one back.

    In other news, I fixed my idle droop issues by cleaning the idle valve assembly and EGR, followed by a base idle reset. I also changed oil (Mobil New Life) and filter, since there have been almost 9000km since the last one, as well as the gearbox and diff oil. Need to flush the cooling system, stop buying parts for a while and install the ones that are on my stock pile...

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  18. #42
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Having been away for Christmas, I really missed working on the car. So today this happened:



    Well, it involved 3 extra cans of distilled water, since I really wanted to make sure that there's no radiator flush fluid residue. Next up is this lot:



    (or frame rails, we shall see)

    In the meantime, these came in the post!


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  20. #43
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! Greasemonkey2000's Avatar
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    Maintenance isn't always fun but it is a necessary evil to allow us to have fun!
    '01 NB2 aka MisF1re: http://mazdaroadster.net/showthread....218#post207218
    '97 M aka Warbird, gone but not forgotten: http://mazdaroadster.net/showthread....B&goto=newpost
    Instagram: @greasemonkey2000

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    HarryB (01-10-2016)

  22. #44
    Supporting Member Madaboutmx5s's Avatar
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    I've used top gaiters before. They are good quality and quick service. It matches well with the interior.

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  24. #45
    5,000 rpm - there be torque here! HarryB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greasemonkey2000 View Post
    Maintenance isn't always fun but it is a necessary evil to allow us to have fun!
    It might sound silly, but I find great satisfaction in maintenance work, makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside knowing that everything is clean and in good order!

    Quote Originally Posted by Madaboutmx5s View Post
    I've used top gaiters before. They are good quality and quick service. It matches well with the interior.
    Thanks! On top of the quality, they are also really friendly and helpful, and amazingly cheap! Hopefully will also fit the door handle covers within the week, so I'll let you know how this goes.

    I should probably wait till I get those on my hands, but I really want to share this...so I secured my first set of Watanabes! Nothing too fancy, 15x6.5 RS8s, but they came with virtually new tires in a really reasonable price. Expected to start their journey from UK soon... Pics from ad:







    Fingers crossed that they will arrive soon and in good shape. Oh, about the colour, do not worry, they WILL be repainted eitherway!

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