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Thread: The turbomacncheese build thread

  1. #1

    The turbomacncheese build thread

    It occurred to me that my donor has been disassembled and gone for quite some time, and that technically I'm doing the work for building the 818 now. Time for a new thread.

    donor: 2006 Saab 92-x Aero.

    Inaugural thread pic - Rebuilt front brakes that I finished yesterday.
    FormatFactoryFront brakes.jpg

    I'll upload some progress pics later. Looks like what I have left for parts is front arms, steering, clean the trans, surface the rotors. Oh, and build the engine. Heads are done, block/crank are at the shop. Won't buy the parts until after the machinist gives me his opinion.

    In the meantime, I'm a bit concerned about hacking up the harness and trying to get it to run a fresh rebuild. Seems like it would be prudent to make sure the engine runs, and THEN hack up the harness. Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Thoughts - You are putting the cart before the horse. When you at least have the aluminum in place, you can accurately figure out where everything will go and layout the harness accordingly. The neater looking work uses a sheet of plywood for laying the wires down. If you unwrap the harness now and delete the unneeded wires you will find a real rats nest latter.

  3. #3
    Senior Member DodgyTim's Avatar
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    I had a running donor, then converted that to a running motor/trans on a trolley
    I dieted the harness like this with the dash, pedals, abs and lights in place
    Frequent starting and checking of all codes took a lot of stress out the process

  4. #4
    Thanks. That's what lends to my trepidation. Somebody on the facebook group suggested I start working on the harness, and I wasn't too excited about it. Starting to get a little twitchy about running out of parts to clean/prep, and the kit fund is still about 2k short.

  5. #5
    You live in America right? Just open another credit card! 0% interest for 15 months! It's your money, use it when you need it!

    Seriously though, that's how I paid for the last few grand of my kit and the first few months of rapid ordering parts. Then I spent the next year paying it all off before the interest hit. Not exactly the most sound financial plan, but the timing worked out really well between getting a new credit card and the kit. It greatly sped up the build process.

  6. #6
    Senior Member STiPWRD's Avatar
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    I personally don't see any reason why you couldn't start on the harness but it all depends on your skill and confidence level with wiring. I too built a fresh motor and dieted my harness and was fine with installing the motor and harness into the 818 before starting it up for the first time. Electrical tape helps keep the harness from becoming a rats nest while being dieted and fitted in the car. As long as you're diligent about the wires you remove/lengthen/shorten and label all of the connectors, you should be fine. Go for it!

  7. #7
    ha haaaaa, phil, I got into a mess with credit cards in my early twenties. My credit is pretty good, but I don't know anyone giving 0 interest. My Great Dane and Doberman had an ..... argument last week, and the Doberman ended up with something like $1300 in stitches and pills. One step forward, two steps back.

    STiPWRD glad to know it can be done. How did you get all the lengths right and know which direction your wiring would go?

  8. #8
    Senior Member STiPWRD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbomacncheese View Post
    STiPWRD glad to know it can be done. How did you get all the lengths right and know which direction your wiring would go?
    The lengths get figured out once you test fit the harness into the car. For me, this was after I had done the majority of the dieting. The direction of the wiring will depend on where you decide to place key items like the ECU and fuse boxes etc; I placed my ECU behind the passenger seat and fuse boxes under the dash. Others choose different locations and this impacts wiring.

    The basic process of harness dieting for me went like this:

    1. Find some open floor space, print the wiring manual and label each and every single connector (I used electrical tape and labeled with a sharpie).

    2. Remove all the wiring loom and electrical tape that covers the harness (all of it).

    3. Remove all of the wiring for systems that are no longer wanted. By this point you will have a box full of cut-away wiring and connectors. http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/showt...l=1#post187340

    4. Test fit the harness into the 818. Place the ECU and fuse boxes into your desired locations and go from there. I never removed the harness from the 818 after I installed it. You will have to lengthen several parts of the harness like to the transmission, pedals, head lights, etc. http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/attac...4&d=1437348324

    5. The last step is to re-cover the wiring with loom

    You'll find lots of good dieting guides on this forum but this one helped me the most, lots of good details:
    http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/showt...l=1#post152338

  9. #9
    I'm a wiring imbecile who was able to very slowly diet the donor harnesses, way back before iWire was here. I depended on this work by Mechie3 to identify and label everything before cutting anything:

    http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/showt...h-Auto-AC-HVAC

    And, I would have saved time, weight, stress and vodka if I had the help posted above by STiPWRD and K3LAG. Tony, with their guidance, and patience, you'll be fine.
    818S/C : Chassis #25 with 06 WRX 2.5 turbo, ABS, cruise, PS, A/C, Apple CarPlay, rear camera, power windows & locks, leather & other complexities.
    Mk3 Roadster #6228 4.6L, T45, IRS, PS, PB, ABS, Cruise, Koni's, 17" Halibrands, red w/ silver - 9K miles then sold @ Barrett-Jackson Jan 2011 (got back cash spent).

  10. #10
    I was a college athlete and share the same wiring title as AZPete - we'll leave it at that - when I saw the wiring harness from my donor I almost threw in the towel. I followed every one of K3LAG's steps and got some great scoop from STiPWRD and the forum along the way. I am currently on step 4 of his post above. Expectation management; you will invest some serious hours doing this but it is worth it. Why? Like a wise builder told me (STiPWRD), if something were to go wrong electrically you will know the harness like the back of your hand and it will help you thoroughly troubleshoot any issues. Finally, you have a forum full of very generous and knowledgeable folks that have blazed the build trail and can provide you with any help or tips that you might need along the way. Go for it! Good Luck!

  11. #11
    Thanks guys. I have Mechie's thread bookmarked already I'm gonna have to chew on this a while to convince myself I can start before testing the engine. Maybe to take off the looms and clean it up, though....

  12. #12
    Jeez. She's done it again. Thrown a monkey wrench in my plans. Wifey pulled me aside in the kitchen this morning. The short of it is that she's never had a convertible (nor have I) and wants a car she can drive around town with no top (on the car!!). She is suggesting I build the 818S instead of the C, and keep my Hyundai around for miserable summer driving out here in the desert. The upside is the obvious cost savings (as long as we don't choose to add the soft top), but the down side is...well...it's a desert. The heat is unbearable. No top at 120 degrees? On the other hand, she has immediately become much more amenable to a second factory five. The 818 wasn't my first choice, but I couldn't sell her on a $40k project when I got started. I remember something about FF working on a new flagship car based on the redesigned Type 65 chassis which might be fun down the road... What to do? What to do?

  13. #13
    Hey, Tony, this is the Valley of the Sun which means we have beautiful sunny days for 8.5 months and hot days for 3.5 months. That's over 250 days when you don't need a roof, nor AC. You might use seat heaters a couple of days and wipers a couple of times, at most, from Oct 1 through June 15. During the hot summer months, use your DD with AC during the day and take your 818S out for some spectacular summer evening drives topless (the car!), or one hour up to the mountains. That's what I did with my topless FFR roadster. Remember that millions of people come here for the sunny weather and it's also why there are so many motorcycles in AZ. Then, a few years down the road if you want a soft top or hard top, you can do it. Do what she wants and you both win.
    818S/C : Chassis #25 with 06 WRX 2.5 turbo, ABS, cruise, PS, A/C, Apple CarPlay, rear camera, power windows & locks, leather & other complexities.
    Mk3 Roadster #6228 4.6L, T45, IRS, PS, PB, ABS, Cruise, Koni's, 17" Halibrands, red w/ silver - 9K miles then sold @ Barrett-Jackson Jan 2011 (got back cash spent).

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by AZPete View Post
    Do what she wants and you both win.
    Pete, I've said before that you give the best advice. It sounds like you didn't have any regrets driving the roadster around, and you know our climate better than I do. Thanks.

  15. #15
    Topless is a blast. I put 9,000 miles on my Mk3 roadster and loved driving it around town, on a few cruises with the local Cobra club, for fun I drove to Holbrook, Tucson, Bullhead City, Sedona and curvy mountain roads, and evening cruises in the summer.
    818S/C : Chassis #25 with 06 WRX 2.5 turbo, ABS, cruise, PS, A/C, Apple CarPlay, rear camera, power windows & locks, leather & other complexities.
    Mk3 Roadster #6228 4.6L, T45, IRS, PS, PB, ABS, Cruise, Koni's, 17" Halibrands, red w/ silver - 9K miles then sold @ Barrett-Jackson Jan 2011 (got back cash spent).

  16. #16
    Senior Member flynntuna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZPete View Post
    Topless is a blast. I put 9,000 miles on my Mk3 roadster and loved driving it around town, on a few cruises with the local Cobra club, for fun I drove to Holbrook, Tucson, Bullhead City, Sedona and curvy mountain roads, and evening cruises in the summer.
    Geez Pete, keep your shirt on. Do you require that your passenger go topless too? Lol.

  17. #17
    Pistons are in the machinist's hands now. Got the rest of the stuff I need to put the engine together (except for some RTV, but I'm trying to find time to stop at the Subaru dealer and get "the good stuff"). Hung a couple led shop lights last weekend to replace the fluorescents. The ballasts kept blowing; I think it has something to do with the heat out here and wifey always leaving them on. At any rate, the Sam's Club special led lights are BRIGHT. If you're on the fence, just get them.

  18. #18
    fasterer and furiouser longislandwrx's Avatar
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    you can order fujibond online, but my Subaru dealer keeps it in stock and they have Saturday and Sunday parts hours (Long Island is Subaru Country)


    I just got a few of the Costco led shop lights with infrared motion sensors (about $30 each) and I am very impressed. Although they turn on sometimes when i walk in front of the closed garage door which is actually a pretty cool security feature.
    A well stocked beverage fridge is the key to any successful project.

  19. #19
    I didn't think about ordering online. I have plenty of time, so maybe I'll just do that and save the gas.

    Worked on TGV deleting this weekend. Technically, I started it about a month ago but stuff gets in the way.

    Pulled the valve assemble, broke/cut the divider, ground it out and gasket-matched it with some cheap harbor fright carbide bits, and blasted them in my harbor fright blaster.

    FormatFactory20170704_172349.jpg FormatFactory20170708_144444.jpg

    Tapped the holes with my cheap harbor fright open-box-discount metric taps, and installed some m10s from Ace.

    FormatFactory20170909_172822.jpg FormatFactoryFB_IMG_1505008044138.jpg FormatFactory20170909_184714.jpg

    Contoured the bolts, reinstalled them with epoxy, and put a nice finish on the insides.

    FormatFactory20170910_170232.jpg FormatFactory20170910_170252.jpg

    I think they came out pretty damned nice, really. If I'd known how much easier this is with a die grinder (vs the dremel I used to use) I would have cleaned up the heads a little.
    Last edited by turbomacncheese; 09-10-2017 at 10:16 PM.

  20. #20
    Kit......ordered. Target production date 10-7. Could take a while to show up here, though, because I'm on the other side of the country.

  21. #21
    Congrats on this big step. What did you include in your order? I think I saw something about a sale at FFR that included the 818 so did you get something at a discount?
    818S/C : Chassis #25 with 06 WRX 2.5 turbo, ABS, cruise, PS, A/C, Apple CarPlay, rear camera, power windows & locks, leather & other complexities.
    Mk3 Roadster #6228 4.6L, T45, IRS, PS, PB, ABS, Cruise, Koni's, 17" Halibrands, red w/ silver - 9K miles then sold @ Barrett-Jackson Jan 2011 (got back cash spent).

  22. #22
    Congrats! I've had my kit in my garage for around 4 months and I still get all giddy when I poke my head in the garage and see it sitting there.

    BTW. Those TGV's look great!

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by AZPete View Post
    Congrats on this big step. What did you include in your order? I think I saw something about a sale at FFR that included the 818 so did you get something at a discount?
    Wheels. Wheels are included with the sale. No $500 off this time, but whatever. I was going to roll around on stockers, probably would have been plenty for my driving. I guess I might always be able to trade them or liquidate them at some point in the future. But they ARE nicer than the stockers...and at drop-shipping-only, cheaper than the set of wheels I originally put in my budget. I might run them after all, everything considered, but we'll see.

    Quote Originally Posted by wirenut View Post
    Congrats! I've had my kit in my garage for around 4 months and I still get all giddy when I poke my head in the garage and see it sitting there.

    BTW. Those TGV's look great!
    Thanks. I took my time and went slow. Hopefully it adds up to some powah!!

    Last porting work I did was in 2007 with an electric one-speed dremel. Never again.

  24. #24
    I don't understand why more don't run the FFR wheels. I suppose they have questionable origin if you're heavy into the track days and such, but it's hard to find a decent set of wheels with the correct stagger for less money.

    I rolled on the stockers (15's in my case ) for the first few months/winter so I could sort out any issues before dropping the money on new tires.

  25. #25
    That is exactly my plan. I had even gone as far (in my head) as committing to leaving the stockers on unless I had a compelling reason to spend money on the wheels. Sounds like you think it's a much better ride with FFR wheels, though. Correct?

  26. #26
    Senior Member Bob_n_Cincy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbomacncheese View Post
    That is exactly my plan. I had even gone as far (in my head) as committing to leaving the stockers on unless I had a compelling reason to spend money on the wheels. Sounds like you think it's a much better ride with FFR wheels, though. Correct?
    The ffr wheels weren't offered for the first year or so when that kit came out. So the early guys all went out and found their own wheels.

    The stock wheels look small and narrow on the 818.
    I would definitely wait until the 818 is complete before buying wheels.
    Bob
    20170210_174911c.jpg compared to sinkhole.jpg
    Last edited by Bob_n_Cincy; 09-15-2017 at 01:47 AM.
    818S #22 Candy Blue Frame, Front Gas Tank, 2.5L Turbo, Rear radiator, Shortened Transmission, Wookiee Compatible, Console mounted MR2 Shifter, Custom ECU panel, AWIC soon
    My Son Michael's Turbo ICE Build X22 http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/showt...rts-818S-Build
    My Electric Supercar Build X21 (on hold until winter) http://thefactoryfiveforum.com/showt...e-Build-Thread

  27. #27
    You'll definitely want different wheels down the road, so just think of it as ~$800 off the kit price.

    I'm not a "wheel guy" (I've never put aftermarket wheels on any vehicle I've owned other than for winters,) but it made a huge difference on my 818. It absolutely screamed faux-Ferrari kit car before hand with the stock ones. Even the 16's just have too much sidewall and are too bland to look like they belong on a modern exotic car.

    The main problem I think people run into is finding matching wheels/tire combos that are available in skinny 215-ish for the front and wide 255-ish for the rear at reasonable prices.

    These were actually my old tire-rack China Special winter wheels. My donor actually had steelies.
    IMG_20160830_181840576.jpgIMG_20170611_123308499_HDR.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images

  28. #28
    Sounds like I'm on the right track, then. Thanks guys!

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