Here it is, 1999. I'm driving a 1987 Mazda RX-7 Turbo II with only 108,000kms on it. It's still winter here and I'm still fighting with idling troubles and detonation. I've been looking for a third generation ('93-95) RX-7 for the last year -- I've found a few but none that have the combination of price and quality that I'm looking for.
So here I am with a car that I really like, even with it's wacko vacuum leaks causing me no end of trouble, and the electrical system is behaving a little stupidly again. (The clock/idiot light cluster has the seatbelt light flashing at me every once in a while.)
Screw it. I like the car, I can't find anything that I'd rather be driving. Let's do some real serious research about what we can do and what performance gains we'll see. This had been looked at before in passing but at the time I'd really wanted a 3rd gen (FD) so nothing had happened.
So, what do I decide? Let's throw a whole bunch of money at the FC. (RX-7 drivers have this nasty habit of refering to their cars by what the VIN says: FB = 1st gen, FC = 2nd gen, FD = 3rd gen.)
To start the new year off right a lot of research came to a head and the fun began. A lot of performance parts were purchased, and the only thing that was missing was the fuel system.
February 11, 1999
After a lot of research, I decided I'd order a Microtech MT-8 and a full fuel setup from Anthony at Maztech of Melbourne. The order was placed, they said everything was in stock, and it was to ship the next day.
February 16, 1999
My credit card was billed my Maztech.
February 24, 1999
Maztech ships a package to me. The package was to contain a cast exhaust manifold, a modified fuel rail, 4 fuel injectors, a fuel pump, a fuel pressure regulator, the computer, and a programming handset for the computer. Instead, the fuel pump, regulator, and 2 fuel injectors were absent. Back ordered. What happened to them being in stock?
March 8, 1999
The package finally arrives. The box looks like it's been beat to hell and back again. Not Maztechs fault. So, now I have some of the components but nothing that I can use.
March 13, 1999
Further on the electrical system fun... I replaced the alternator and the car is much happier now. It's idling again, I haven't detected any sign of detonation, but the seatbelt light still flashes at me sometimes.
March 16, 1999
Got the exhaust done at Robson Racing in Ottawa. Custom mandrel bent 3" exhaust. I'm very unhappy! Read the story.
March 19, 1999
Slapped in the new clutch, flywheel and pressure plate yesterday. Wow! Huge, huge difference with the lightened flywheel. I highly recommend this mod. I went for an 11lb aluminum piece from Centerforce, purchased via MazdaComp. The stock flywheel was heavy. Somewhere on the heavy side of 25lbs, I think.
April 26, 1999
Been a while since I got to write about the car. Beginning of April we got the J&S Knock Sensor and the Jacob's Rotary Pro Pak ignition in. Results are very good. The Jacobs box is providing me with better mileage and a more stable idle. The J&S is functioning well -- tested with some detonation. :-/ Not enough fuel yet for WOT in 4th gear.
Last week the cage, seat, harness and suspension went in. It's a very different car now. Very very very stiff. Not just structurally, but the ride is definitely, um, harsh. 400lb front springs, 275lb rear springs. Starter spring rates as delivered from MazdaComp. It's a little stiffer than I expected, but that's okay. Initial impression is good. I look forward to getting the car out for a real workout to see exactly how it handles now.
April 26, 1999
Well, this day also happened to be when Maztech shipped the second package. It was to contain everything that was missing in the first, plus a sheet describing how to setup the computer based on the new fuel system, a fuel system diagram, and a couple of other things.
May 4, 1999
The package arrives. Two used fuel injectors of unknown origin and size. Definitely not the Rochester 1050cc injectors I'd ordered. Fuel pump looks right but cost $380 instead of the $320 I was originally quoted. No fuel pressure regulator. I still don't have a full fuel system. And better still, the injectors that arrived came without grommets, and they also don't appear to fit the modified fuel rail that I had previously been supplied with. This is the last straw.
June 4, 1999
Okay, okay, it wasn't the last straw. I've been real busy trying to move to another city lately so I haven't updated this page. Maztech have been great with me recently and I really appreciate their help. I got everything on the car aside from the underdrive pulleys -- I want to keep my power steering. So, anyway, we modified the fuel rail ourselves, mounted everything up, connected the Microtech MT-8 and fired up the car. It ran stinking rich. Played with the computer and finally called Anthony at Maztech. Less than 30 seconds later the car was idling clean.
So, time to take the car out for a little spin. Detonation. I fought this detonation for a couple of weeks, nobody could explain it. Finally we decided that we'd messed something up in the ignition system. Sure enough, one wire on the T2 trailing coil was going to the wrong spot. Connect it to the right spot and go for a rip... 16psi in 4th gear without detonation. The car is a rocket. Now comes the fun of leaning it out a bit -- I actually have way too much fuel across the entire range!
June 6, 1999
Okay, so I got out today with the G-tech. It's 26C, 60% humidity. I found a flatish stretch of road and tried to pound out a 1/4 mile in between some traffic. End result is the G-tech says firstname.lastname@example.org. Not quite what I was expecting, but I'm running _extremely_ rich right now so I'm sure the horsepower will show up as the fuel is dialed back a bit.
More to come...