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Thread: Bigger's 818 Build

  1. #1
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    Bigger's 818 Build

    August 2016 I decided to build an 818, so I bought a donor car. A 2003 WRX wagon.
    KIMG0461.jpg
    I swapped in a JDM ej205 AVCS, Blouch 16g-xt, JDM ECU, flexfuel, Carberry rom, yada yada.
    KIMG0422.jpg
    November 2016 Solidworks-Mike offered his kit for sale, so I flew to Vegas and packed it into a 17ft Uhaul truck.
    IMG_0910.jpg
    It's now off the dolly with the engine and trans installed. I'm making progress.
    KIMG0547.jpgKIMG0561.jpgKIMG0570.jpg
    KIMG0573.jpg
    Last edited by bigger; 09-10-2019 at 09:43 AM.

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the adventure. Nice progress!

  3. #3
    Mechie3's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure you got a bunch of my parts with Mike's kit!
    Zero Decibel Motorsports
    Check out my new website!
    www.zerodecibelmotorsports.com
    www.facebook.com/zero.decibel.motorsports

  4. #4
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    Yea.. I've got just about everything you make and love every bit of it!

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  6. #6
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    Well.. It runs now. I'm super close to running it around the block!

  7. #7
    Senior Member flynntuna's Avatar
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    Congrats. Any plans to trailer it to Huntington Beach at the end of the month? People are attracted to these cars, especially when they can see what's behind the body panels.

  8. #8
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    Nah. As much as I'd like to, I don't feel like loading it up on a trailer and driving that far.

    I finished the coolant system and odds and ends to do an idle test today. After chasing down a few minor leaks, I'm pretty happy. It idles, data from the ecu all looks normal. I just need to finish the clutch hydraulics and shifter before I can go cart it. The shift cables should arrive this week. I'm doing an mr2 shifter.

  9. #9
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    I grew up in Castro Valley, lived on Beardsley St off of Seaview Ave off of Redwood Rd.
    Congrats on the milestone, for me the project really got rolling once I had the first start.

  10. #10
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    Thanks. Small world.
    Last edited by bigger; 09-06-2019 at 03:49 PM.

  11. #11
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    It's been a while..

    The car is pretty well sorted and has ~1500 miles now. It's an absolute blast to drive.

    There are few pictures of it on my IG.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/B1CPGT0ggc_/
    https://www.instagram.com/p/B1CPAmygj8t/
    https://www.instagram.com/p/B1COS9lAitb/

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  13. #12
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    Wow nice build!

  14. #13
    Senior Member flynntuna's Avatar
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    I agree, very nice. Congrats.
    Ps. Huntington Beach is in about 6months. Hint hint

  15. #14
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    Thank you. Although I would love to do attend the Huntington Beach event, I don't really see myself making it. The build was fun and the car is a great to drive, but I'm already starting on other projects.

  16. #15
    Member Jetfuel's Avatar
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    nice ride, you should be very proud of your work, looks awesome...
    ...love the wheels.

  17. #16
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    I recently took the car to a local car cruise. There were some big smiles, flaming launch control launches, 22psi no lift shifts, first through third burn outs, and even several ridiculous donuts and drifts. During the event, I noticed so many hot rods breaking down and overheating. As hard as this car was pounded on, there was never even a hiccup. It ran hard and consistent, and I was really happy with it.

    I thought it might be helpful to others building or sorting an 818 if I were to share a few things that I found important to getting this car sorted for street use. That said, I'm not asserting that I am 'right' or know better. I simply wish to share how I approached several key issues with my particular setup. Please don't school me with what I "should have done", as I'm quite happy.

    First, the fuel tank sucks.. Even with the Holly hydromat and baffles around the fuel pump, it starved during drifts and corners. This really scared me considering a fuel starvation event at full boost and deep into rpm will easily pop a subi ej. After going to a Radium surge tank, there has not been another starvation event. This was a ~$1800 project, and it was well worth it.

    Next, bump steer and miserably low caster made for a twitchy ride that inspired no confidence. This kept the speedo on the left side... After cutting the upper control arms for more adjustment and swapping the Baer lowered tie rods, caster adjustment allowed for 5.5 degrees and bump steer was mostly eliminated. Perhaps another 1/8 inch or so of tie rod would get me to zero bump steer, but the off the shelf solution didn't allow for it. Overall this was super easy and brought the car to a whole different level. The alignment was handled by a local race shop that took great care in a very good alignment. This makes all of the difference in the world. Really.. The difference in handling can not be over stated. Take great care here, and the car will be so much more enjoyable.

    Cooling, I really went with the old hot rod basics, and have had no problems in stop and go traffic over 100 degree days. After a few extended right side speedo runs on hot days, the temp has also never been an issue. A good WRX after market radiator, Boig coolant tubes, stock thermostat, Wayne's bleeder mod, and install ALL OF THE DUCTING. Easy.. Works.. Good..

    Water cooled intercooler for me. I'm not saying this is a must, but has worked well. I've done ~300 miles of data logging for dialing in the street tune, so I am not simply guessing here. Although it will heat soak and it is not perfect, it works fine. Use an automotive pump, add a temp gauge for IAT, set your tune to correct for sketchy temp ranges, voila.

    The MR2 shifter with ZD stuff is slick shifting and works great. I'm happy with it. Take care here to tune the shifter if you're not happy with the feel. I was able to dial this in nicely. Combined with a 'no lift to shift solution' and this is BSC fast shifting. Scary fast.. Also, NLTS is much smoother than most people expect. I believe it allows for the fastest possible shift while exerting the least strain to the drivetrain. Unlike two step launch control, this one reduces abuse to the trans.

    I had initially planned to do AC and some other stuff, but noticed early on in street testing that weight is king here. I can feel the difference with a passenger more than I would in another type of car.. More like a motorcycle than a Vette.. So I decided to make lower weight priority over accessories, and I'm happy with this choice.

    Last, I really changed my mind about power goals along the way. I had started building a 2.5 liter hybrid beast with a fat rotated turbo but quickly decided let that go. Even at the modest power levels of my ej205 on e85, 16g, carberry, the car is fast enough to hang with street bikes, is always near or on boost, and out runs traction most of the time. Save the $$ here for the best rubber you can run.

    That's my $0.02 worth. I really hope it helps. Thanks to everyone on the forum for your insights and advice. It has been very helpful along the way.
    Last edited by bigger; 09-10-2019 at 10:25 AM.

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  19. #17
    Harley818's Avatar
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    Hey Bigger......reading through your post, I was going "check", "check" almost all the way through.
    I didn't do the gas tank route.... yet, and haven't had fuel starvation issues, but I'm not tracking or doing burnouts.
    I was thinking of the hydromat, so I guess I'll skip that and maybe do a tank mod in the future.
    I agree that the caster mod really helps handling and I ended up around 5.5 degrees by just flipping the bracket, with the Baer bump steer mod.
    I've been driving it for 3 summers now and no heating issues with the engine in stop and go traffic. Same intercooler and temp monitoring on the outlet of the intercooler. Intercooler keeps temps nice and low.
    Same shifter works amazingly well and feels like the tranny is right below it.
    I'm adding bigger rear brakes as I only have the 2002 rear single pots and they are not enough. I'm adding fronts like BobnCincy did.
    Thinking about bigger injectors and next step up on turbo to allow me to hit 300. I'm below that now.
    All these mods work extremely well and result in a reliable fast drive.
    Harley
    Bought 2002 Donor Jan 2014
    First Start Jan 18, 2015
    First Drive Feb 14, 2015

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