Sunday, February 7, 2016

99 Miata - We'll Call Him "Murphy"

"Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong" - Murphy's Law

A pile of parts anxiously awaits.
Nothing seems to describe the 99 Miata project any better right now. This weekend I arranged to have lots of help converge on the car and finally assemble all the parts that have been amassing here at NMS South. Saturday things quickly turned for the worse when we discovered I had accidentally ordered some very cheap and defective engine internal parts.  When building an engine, tolerances and dimensions are measured in thousandths of an inch so even tiny imperfections could be disastrous. 
Engine mounted on the stand and ready for building. 

New connecting rod and main bearings as well as piston rings will be on order soon and we'll try it later this week.  On the bright side, with massive help from Kyle D. and Jason, the car now is riding on the stiffer sport package springs and on it's way to a full sport package upgrade that will let us upgrade the car to the absolute fullest extent of the rules for our SCCA class.
The very bottom of the motor, the oil pan holds all the oil and gets pretty nasty over time. Chuck did an awesome job cleaning this one up and made it look brand new.

Trying to build on the positives from another delay, I returned this morning to spend some time painting the engine block and valve cover.  Painting the engine block will help prevent rusting, let us more easily detect the location of oil leaks, and just generally keep everything looking nicer under the hood. The valve cover, well...red is the fastest color so why not. 
After thoroughly masking off the internal areas of the engine block, it was coated with several layers of paint designed to resist high temperatures for these types of applications.

Another massive thank you to the whole crew that came out to support and work on the car as well as Chuck for so generously letting me use his incredible garage space and tools.  There's no way the car would be possible without everyone's hard work. 
The valve cover gets a few coats of more high temp paint after a thorough cleaning.

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