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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 9:52 pm 
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that oil pump should of had a oil seal in it ready to go. some body must of had a bad day at the factory. :wink:

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PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2012 8:44 pm 
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Location: Adelaide, SA. Cars: 5 Geminis and a Piazza
geminiv6turboute wrote:
that oil pump should of had a oil seal in it ready to go. some body must of had a bad day at the factory. :wink:


Ahh good! Glad I'm not crazy :lol:

Awesome news. The Piazza is back together. Putting the power steering pump back on was the absolute worst job, spanned a few days and resulted in a decent cut, monged fingernail, mini cuts all up both arms, and a bolt getting smashed with a hammer and sent flying to high heaven (never to be seen again). In conclusion, it's held on by three bolts and I don't give a f***. Stupidly engineered piece of s*#t!

Anyway, it's back together, doesn't leak a drop of anything anywhere (knock on wood) and I could actually see the timing marks this time! After all the assing around before, it was actually timed to ~10deg BTDC with the advance line connected, or 0 without! So I've advanced it back to where it should be, 10deg with the line blocked, or about 18deg BTDC with it connected. The engine sounds much more responsive, but it idles at two grand and the idle stop screw seems a little, er, hard (impossible) to get to! Any tips here?

Couldn't drive it because there's a Gemini with no front wheels blocking the driveway, but I think it's actually DONE.

Except that the headlight covers don't work.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 3:32 pm 
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Location: Adelaide, SA. Cars: 5 Geminis and a Piazza
Posted: Mon Oct 15, 2012 8:23 am

Time for an update!

The car thinks it needs coolant, but it doesn't. Maybe I missed a wire or something, I'd better check it. Has anyone else had this?

I drove it the other day, the first real time since fixing a lot of stuff. It works! I can actually feel the turbo come on boost (just), and it pulls alright. Not lightning fast, but not bad. The turbo is definitely getting oil and there are no real flat spots. The headlight motor issue persists, even with the motor from the other Piazza, it just instantly blows the fuse. Bah. Oh, no more hard starting either. Turns out that was the uhh.. immobiliser... lol. So now that I've fixed the remote it actually starts like you'd expect.

Well, I bought a battery, welded up a battery bracket, put Chassis Black (tar) on the battery tray to prevent future rust, and touched up another spot of surface rust in the engine bay with some Cold Gal (rust proofing) primer and acrylic black. I gave the car a wash, and tried to cut and polish it, but it really didn't work... The paint's just s*#t. However, I found some more unexpected rust, a giant patch on the bottom rear of the driver's door where the paint's just fallen off. The good news is that it doesn't need plating. It's eaten in but not enough to compromise strength too much. I'll clean it up, hit it with some Cold Gal and/or a thin skim of bog, then just touch it up with some pressure pack black for now. There's also some light bubbling starting on the lip of the bonnet under the "turbo" badge, and in the rear window sill. I should touch them up before they get too serious.. I'd rather patchy touched-up paint, than rust.

I'm hoping to *drum roll* register the car in coming weeks. It's still not how I want it, but it's driveable, and hopefully enjoyable (or just a change from the R31). First on the list is getting the air con gassed. Second step, getting the rear window popped out so I can fix the boot lid rust. I have to hand sand the bloody front lip so I can paint and fit it, then rip the diff out and get the LSD shimmed. I have paints and can chuck my Isuzu badge on any day now.

Then, last of all (for the time being), I'll be visiting Industrial Springs and getting some custom springs made up all around, and grabbing some Koni's for the back to keep them captive.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:38 am 
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:) nice work -- Video time bro


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:03 am 
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Location: Adelaide, SA. Cars: 5 Geminis and a Piazza
Posts from the last few weeks:

IT'S REGO'D! I've now driven it, and driven it through the hills! It's altogether a functional car with no major issues!

Plenty of little ones though, but it's fairly daily-able now. Here's my to-do list:
- Flush and bleed brakes with new dot 3 fluid as per manufacturer specs (the guys at the car store recommended dot 5... errrmm, not sure if that's wise)
- Get brake pads that aren't made of newspaper
- New tyres - the ones on there are made of stone
- Hurry up and get custom springs, so I can:
- Get Koni rears too (the Koni's at the front are the only thing making the car drivable!)
- Get a Piazza boss kit, so that I can fit an aftermarket steering wheel, the standard one feels crap
- Do valve clearances at some point - it sounds like a truck, almost like just one of them isn't right!
- Unobtrusively fit better speakers

That's the fairly urgent stuff. From there it'll (gradually) be onto the fun stuff:
- Re-paint the red and fit my Isuzu grille badge
- Fix a few spots of rust, including the hatch (which will need the window out)
- Shim the LSD!
- Get A/C gassed
- Fit an aftermarket ECU, my 380cc injectors and the GT2860RS, then get some power
- Fit the front lip
- Get the paint touched up

A couple of potential issues have popped up. The heater core leaked a small amount of coolant, but it was stone cold, and then it stopped leaking and that was that.. and it hasn't since, which is strange. I'll try not to worry about it unless/until it does it again. Also, the dash cluster flicks on and off sometimes, and when it does it freaks out and reads maximum temp. It freaked me out, but the car hasn't even thought about overheating, so all is well. It's freaking annoying/distracting having the dash flicker on and off though. I've done some reading and will surely eventually have to rip it out to repair. Can anyone point me in the direction of the external (loom) earth points so that I can check them first?

Pictorial evidence of it on the road soon!



Another post from not long ago:

I also fitted some of those spiffy Narva arctic white headlights (they still look a bit blue... hmm...) and have to admit they made pretty much bugger all difference. They're not that bad, anyway - I just wanted a little extra.

The heater core seems to have not leaked again... no idea what caused it, but I'm going to pretend it didn't happen until my optimism is disproved :lol:

Now I may have just got it on the road, but I'm thinking that in a couple of weeks I'll get the rear window professionally removed, drive it home and remove the diff, drop said diff off (thanks Skyline) to a diff place and get it shimmed while I fix (weld) the rear hatch rust. I should have that sorted in a weekend, and a few weeks later should have the diff back in and tight. By that time I should be ready for my first engine oil flush and change too - I'd prefer to do it around 500km than 1000.

Once that's done, it's off to Industrial Springs.

P.S. I'll probably be bringing her out to All Jap Day (Adelaide) next year, possibly with Lachlan's too! We'll have to park somewhere remotely near the Bellett guys, to help stamp in the existence of the Isuzu brand.



Post from the other day:

WHYYYY MUST EVERYTHING RATTLE OR SQUEAK!!! I think I need earmuffs to drive this car. Road noise is nicely baffled by the sound deadening, but aaargh, something to the right of the instrument cluster squeaks intolerably, something else vibrates or rattles around the headunit/glovebox area, and there's this strange deep grinding/crunching noise from the back end during suspension travel, just like Lachlan's has (the difference is, mine's a MILE from bottoming out!) Is everyone's Piazza full of annoying noises? It's driving me mental, and I'm supposed to be driving it to NSW for Easter! It doesn't help the speakers are beyond crap....

Oh, and while I'm ranting, the overflow level warning light flicks on over bumps even when full, the instrument cluster randomly reads full temp for a few seconds on and off, despite the car being at normal (even cool) operating temps, oh, and those Narva headlight globes that claim xx% more light are basically exactly the same as standard globes!

End rant. The car has been behaving itself besides the above, and I took it for a somewhat spirited drive in the middle of nowhere in the wet last night. I attempted some lightning photography without success, before blowing a front tyre (the nail that had been in there since I bought the car found its way out). Turns out I have a working jack and crossbrace - that's good! And the spare was down to steel belts, but was still inflated and got me home. That was lucky!!

The air con should be getting gassed this Thursday/Friday. Some old bloke has a gas that will "work for R12 systems." He said it's flammable, but isn't an issue since it's in a sealed system. I was funny about the idea at first, but to be fair, engine bays also have petrol and oil in them, which are/can be highly flammable if they leak. Alternatively he might be able to convert it to R134a, but it's about double the cost. Thoughts?

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:05 am 
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Time for another update. It rained good and proper here the other day, so I went for a spirited drive in the deserted reaches of the hills. It occurs to me that even the slight lag from the IHI is annoying at times. Besides this, the Piazza was quite nice until a nail (long term resident) became dislodged from the front left tyre. Apparently said driving was all a bit too exciting for it. Turns out I had a spare (yay) and serviceable jack and wheel brace. The spare, however, was all down to steel belts, and had a bulge where the steel belts had broken and the last hope of rubber had egged through. Nevertheless, this got me home, and another retreaded spare (yaaaay) has now taken its place. To do: buy real tyres. Another goal of said hills drive was to take lightning photos, but apparently this isn't as easy as I had assumed, and the result included a few mediocre night shots.

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On Friday, I went to get the air con gassed, before realising the compressor wasn't plugged in, and that I couldn't see anywhere FOR it to plug in. Checked the spares Piazza to no avail, and had to cancel the appointment (sidenote - this is now sorted I think, I checked Lachlan's Piazza and found the right wire, connected to something else on mine... my bad). Instead, I went to Complete Windscreens and had them remove the rear window so I could fix the rust. Turns out the rust really wasn't that bad, not really worth plating. For some reason, most of the bottom section of the hatch had been bogged, even though it was straight, and the paint was super mega thick, to the point that most of the bubbling was just paint dying. I took all of the lower section back to bare metal, and today I finished MIG welding up the rust holes. A few burnt through and became a lot bigger (in hindsight, maybe plating would have been easier here, but there's no telling how big the holes would have grown then anyway). I'm happy with the result, and the windscreen mob are confident that a generic rubber will fit and it'll go back in no dramas.

Anyway. Whilst taking out interior panels, I noticed some rust in a fairly unexpected spot: under the left-hand side boot hinge, on the structural horizontal beam between the rear pillars. It was fairly serious, and in the single worst possible spot, ever, in the world, fullstop. Profanities. So today I had a crack at fixing it. This involved putting blankets and sheets in the vicinity, welder in the boot, hatch up, and kneeling backwards on the back seat (with a welding mask on, no less) and trying to spot weld a metal plate onto a car which was apparently made of fireworks. I cannot convey the sheer unpleasantness of this job. My neighbours will attest that an adequate description may entail the frequent use of an especially vulgar profanity commencing with the third letter of the English language. I hope their kids are too young to pick these things up. Sorry kids.

Basically, in work-safe terms, I had no room, couldn't see a thing due to the direction of sunglight, was in a horrendous position, the metal of the Piazza kept exploding in a ridiculous quantity of sparks, and all of said sparks fell down against my leg somehow, which burnt me a bit since I was in shorts (I was only intending to weld the hatch), the weld wouldn't take and it turned out the sheet and blanket were both synthetic, and caught on fire several times right above the back seat (!!!) before I FINALLY got the effing weld to take. It just started playing ball and I was about to call it a day, took my gloves off and then decided it needed an extra squirt of weld up the top for strength. I did so, and it was fine, til I looked down. The blanket was quite significantly on fire, a hole had appeared, and all of this suspended maybe 15cm above the very clean back seat! So I freak out and pat it out with my hands.

This is kinda the first time I've ever seen synthetic fabrics burn. Apparently all of my other rags were cotton. This ended badly. I was in emergency for a few hours... and was going to get sent to a plastics person (ie, skin grafting) but then they decided it'd be okay. Not really how I intended on spending the evening.

But, as I came home from hospital, I checked out the Piazza, a final consolation. The weld is strong (enough), and by some miracle, the seat wasn't burned. Or, if so, not noticeably. I have some pics, but I'll have to delay those for next time.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:05 am 
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As soon as I read you tried to pat it out with your hands I thought oh dear, I can see where this is going :lol: You do a good job of telling the story too!

Cars looking good, I like it :)

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 Post subject: Re: Eli's black forged Piazza
PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 1:45 pm 
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Location: Adelaide, SA. Cars: 5 Geminis and a Piazza
Delayed reaction, yeah that burn wasn't fun!

Here's some hillclimb footage of the Piazza. I've since sorted the power issue (was a bad vacuum source to one of the fuel pressure regs) but there's so much to tell. Anyway, here's some footage (as well as some Geminats pictures):


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Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PandamoniumDrift
Current tally: 5 Geminis and a Piazza


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