Rampant's Evo VI progress thread
This is intended to be a long-term progress thread - with regular updates on all the work being performed on my recently acquired fresh Japanese import Evo VI GSR.
Car was purchased in mid-Oct 2018, with 141,000 km on the clock, unregistered, and for a fair price bearing in mind the condition of the paintwork - scruffy and oxidised - as you will see...
The car is totally standard at the moment, with even the original exhaust and catalytic converter still fitted. Only things that are non-standard are the gear knob, handbrake cover and Japanese double-DIN stereo. Oh, and the wheels, of course - 17 x 8" RAYS gram lights - in a very fetching gold colour. (When I say fetching, I really mean, being polite, that they don't particularly suit the car...)
Importantly, the underside is in very solid condition with what small amount of rust being isolated to small areas of surface rust only - the sills and chassis rails are in pristine condition. Lovely and straight and tight. This is the only bit that *really* mattered when looking at cars. Everything else can be fixed. Except rot.
Mechanically, the car appears to be sound, drives well and pulls well for a 19 year old. :mhihi: :blush:
I had the import dealer service the car prior to delivery with fresh oil and filters and also, because there was no record of a cambelt change they also performed a full cambelt service at my request. Turns out that the oil was already fresh and that a cambelt change had already been recently performed.
This is a typical Japanese approach to looking after a car - all the mechanical bits are often very well maintained, while the bodywork isn't always a priority. I can tell that the car has been living in a hot, dry and sunny climate due to all the tell-tale signs like solid chassis, sun-bleached rear parcel shelf fabric, fading on the steering wheel leather, and the etching of the bonnet paint from washer jets - typically that strong direct sunlight is the catalyst that makes the water etch into the paint lacquer like acid.
The only thing remaining to service is the AYC - and that is already booked in the near future, along with a full mechanical inspection.
Finally, my plans for this car are quite simple. This is a third car that, perversely, will be used primarily in winter so I don't have to drive my silly RWD M3 Competition in the slippery, icy and snowy conditions that would make it a total liability.
The car will be a long-term project - to update and improve things that is typical of us Evo owner enthusiasts. Stage 1 is where I'm aiming, looking for a healthy 350bhp. I also plan on doing a few trackdays...
I already mentioned that the paintwork is rough. Here's why...
Oxidisation of paint on roof - typical of many areas of the car:
Boot lid oxidisation and layers of baked-on grime:
Bonnet oxidisation and acid etching from washer jet water:
Wiper arm and scuttle faded to white:
Raised pimples on the bumper top - typical of heat blistering in hot climate:
Perished door seals - typical from hot climate:
Typically worn seat bolsters:
Scruffy heat-blanket, worn engine loom covers, typical cam cover oil seep:
Small battery and lovely condition of sills in engine bay :) :
Weather hasn't been good enough to get under the car to take photos of the condition of the underside yet... so I'll do those later.
So - a lot of work to be getting on with just on the exterior bodywork. But I think there's a bit of life left in the paintwork yet - underneath all the oxidisation. Some places definitely need a respray - front and rear bumper where there are lots of little raised pimples can't be restored by a machine polish - but since they're plastic and therefore won't rust or deteriorate further, I'm reconciled to having that a long term aim. Exterior condition is not an immediate priority, otherwise I just wouldn't have invested in this particular car :mhihi: but I have to say that the bodywork doesn't really bother me all that much - for a 19 year old car that clearly hasn't had much superficial love - it's OK for now.
A bit of shopping
Before getting much hands-on with the car, I've already invested in a few bits and pieces:
Spark plugs - no idea when they were last changed, so this is a no-brainer.
Second hand Russ Fellows exhaust - thanks to topgun off here :smthumbup
Induction kit from Ross Sport - MAF adapter and K&N
Silenced cat pipe - M2 from Ross Sport ebay store (cheaper than their website even with MLR18!)
Clear side repeaters
New 17 x 8" wheels to replace the marmite gold RAYS
Sony single-DIN blue-tooth stereo unit and ISO wiring harness
Since the Brembo calipers have already been re-painted by the import dealer - to an acceptable, if average standard...
Brembo decals and also a key-ring for Rampant
All of this is with a very keen eye on not over-spending the limited budget we have - remembering that this is a 3rd family car. I could've lived with the wheels for now, but Mrs Rampant insisted that they needed to be changed and I can't say I mind or disagree spending a little on new wheels, LOL. Maybe keep the RAYS for track-days, or maybe even sell them?
First bits and bobs
I've already started with a bit of compound polish - by hand - in the cold garage yesterday evening - and the paint is responding reasonably well, so I'm confident that a machine polish will remove most of the ROUGHNESS - honestly, you can feel it's like sandpaper - and perhaps bring at least a little bit of life and depth back into it.
I also did a bit of cleaning on the cam cover, just to see how it responded and the results are reasonable
Much more will follow later today :blah:
Like these types of threads. :smthumbup
Love following these threads :coolsm:... This could be a stunning car... Lots of superficial bits need replacing, the paint should come up well after polishing/sealing.
The engine bay more importantly is very very clean, I can't see rust from the photos in the usual places you'd find it which is a really good indication to the general condition of the body work :smthumbup:smthumbup
Looks like a good fun project there plus all the signs of a rather nice/fun Evo at the end of it :smthumbup:D
PS, a couple of pics of your M3 would be nice ...
Looking great Mark, nice one. So you’re going for winter usage!!fair play to you, what measures will you be taking to avoid the rot? I see you’ve clear sealed, are you doing box sections? Looking forward to updates
A little progress
The cold and the rain kept progress slow yesterday, but a couple of things got a bit of attention.
The Carrozzerio is out leaving a hole in the dash to fill with a new stereo:
A bit of compound polishing by hand on part of the roof shows that there is a bit of life in the paintwork yet.
During - work in progress:
I'm unsure whether I pay somebody to machine polish it or invest in a machine polisher myself.
I'm open to advice on which and advice on a *cheap* polishing kit if the DIY option is the one to go for???
I also discovered that the RAYS gam lights are 17 x 8.5" - wider than I originally thought:
Shame that the only bit of caliper paint that was spilled happened to be on one of the original RAYS stickers...
The rubbish front mudflaps are coming off when I get the wheel off to do the brembo logo on the caliper:
Where the M3 is sitting is where I'm tentatively planning on building a car port...
A bit more to come...
Underside condition :)
It's pretty clear that the car has been living in a hot, sunny and dry climate for the past 19 years, as evidenced by a few tell-tale signs such as heavily faded rear seat headrest fabrics:
Notice I have no rear speakers, either, but that's an easy and relatively inexpensive addition...
Check out the melted plastic insert in the silly gear shift knob as evidence of hot climate:
Come to think of it - the hot climate may also have been part responsible for the melted plastic conduit in the engine bay and the deterioration of the heat blanket?
Underside pictures as promised, detailing the total lack of wear on things like the filler neck stone-guard and fuel tank stone-guard...
With a chassis like this - you can probably see why I'm not too bothered about the cosmetic condition of the paintwork? I can work on the paintwork and body in slow time :thumbup:
Things like the headlamps - that are brown and faded - I'll wet sand and polish them out and apply a coat of lacquer whenever I get a decent chance...
I also could do with some advice on covering the PIAA spot lamps. Maybe a clear sheet of Perspex cut to size would offer good protection from stone-cracks destroying the lamps???
Until next time...
Nice little project, looks like it's in good hands.
Always had a soft spot for icelle blue 6's ever since looking at this thread (almost 10 years ago!):
They look great on a nice sunny day, the colour really suits the car.
Ah sure didnít I know it would be inevitable thee would need a fix /hit of Mitsifever yet again ;)
Nice VI to use as a base for light modding ...enjoy :smthumbup
small jobs and deliveries
Got to start somewhere I suppose, so after I gave the coil cover a clean and realised that the oil stain was deeply ingrained in the plastic I decided to clean it with paint thinners and then renovate using GTechniq C4 - a truly astonishing *permanent* plastic restoration product...
Before the C4 - faded white surface on plastic:
A few deliveries began arriving today. Cat pipe, spark plugs, stereo harness and speedo converter
It'll be time to start getting things fitted soon - at the weekend if not before :naughty:
GTechniq plastic restorer is the biz. When I resprayed my V, the gutter trims, windows surrounds and wing mirror frames were faded white, this stuff made them come up like new! Isn’t cheap, but is the best.
I also have a machine polish detox treatment booked for next Monday. Not expecting miracles, but a small amount of paint surface improvement will be of great benefit :smthumbup
Fine winter jobbie,looks very fresh underneath.that will come up well with some tlc.did you get sorted with a stereo pocket? Got one if you want.
blimey! that underside looks really good!
We have tunes
Now with added in-car entertainment.
Fitted without the DAB antenna or the hands free microphone at the moment, but there is now tunes :)
And the wheels are here. 17 x 8" Ultralite R5 ten-spoke in gunmetal...
Tested propped in front of the car - perspective is a bit wrong, but looking sweet I think...
We also have induction and clear side repeaters
Progress is good so far.
Conduit and associated pieces for engine bay ordered, as well as a generic single DIN storage tray.
Good progress:smthumbup colour looks almost identical match to your M3 in the pic:mitsi:
Both nice shades of blue, to be sure :smthumbup
I'm impatient to get this Evo on the road.
Registration papers should be through any day now. :blah:
Lookin good - Interesting thread :)
That moment when you realise...
That moment when you realise that each wheel has a 7-sided "locking" wheel nut and you have no 7-sided "key" to remove them.
Let battle commence.
Find a socket that is *just* slightly too small to fit over the alloy 7-sided interloper.
Then find a sledge hammer to gently *persuade* the socket onto the errant wheel nut...
After which - you can safely remove the odd fellow
Behold, the socket mated with ye olde lock nut. Cast thine eyes upon it and see that it has been **screwed** without thine key to thine chastity belt...
Need to see the new ones fitted now Mark
No time to wait for eBay deliveries when I need to test fit new wheels.
Improvisation is also so much more rewarding :mhihi:
I could take the wheels one by one for tyre swap-over, but makes much more sense to wait for plates to then take the car for a drive-in drive-out tyre swap procedure.
C'mon DVLA, you're killing me with your tardy processes.
A little bit of progress during the course of this week - the main event being a "paint correction" machine polish by a local mobile detailer.
I use inverted commas on the "paint correction" part because I recognise that the paintwork on this car is never going to be a sparkling example - but Slater did a great job in bringing the paint back to life and improving the "reflections", for example, the tree branches above my driveway, from a hazy shadowy blur to actual recognisable shapes of tree branches with some actual detail in them.
Top work :smthumbup
I have a much better knob
Few more bits
The budget shopping continues...
New Sony 3-way 6" speakers, "matching" the Sony head unit - to replace the flat front speakers, Wheel nuts and valves, and a set of used rear speaker grilles
Good News and a bit of audio
Good news - I received the V5 from DVLA today and have been assigned a T-reg. Plates are on the way and I can soon DRIVE the thing on the public highway, yeeehaaa. :mitsi:
On the subject of audio -
I had the driver door-card off to replace the driver front speaker. Wow. More evidence of the car having lived in a hot dry climate. The plastic splash-protection has shrunken considerably over the years, exposing the soft black sticky mastic on the periphery, and the plastic has also transformed into a brittle breakable film in places. I need to replace this - but in the mean time, I've stretched it back towards the edges of the door-frame and secured it with bodge tape, just as a temporary measure.
These jobs are never easy - because you never know what you will find when you start taking things apart...
And then it appears that the original audio install for the Pioneer Carozzerio head unit also had a set of Carozzerio *Component* speakers installed. Sadly, the separate component tweeters had been removed/were missing from the end of the extensive wiring loom with filters and connectors, an that's why the sound was flat and rubbish from the remaining mid-range 6" component woofer, (Kevlar weave cone? pictured in the previous posts).
The good news is that I can recycle the woofers (gladly also 4 ohms impedance) for the rear speakers to add rear fill to the sound stage. Not a top-end audio install, I know - but fine in an old Evo to a very modest overall budget.
The old front woofers will be an ideal fit in the rear shelf, to replace the empty space under these *comedy* loose felt covers.
All with a set of used speaker grilles to finish off the OEM look
Genuine queation Mark, having had the M3 for a while now, what attracted you back to an Evo?
- Nothing drives like an Evo. Traction, grip, pointability, control, *feedback*. In all weathers on any road.
- Missed my old Evo
- M3 a liability in damp, wet, winter, etc.
- Both other cars very expensive. Having a third car protects mileage/condition/value of other cars.
- Won't track either of the other cars. Don't have the 10% excess should the worst happen...
- M3 is very fast and very capable, but quite large, so is definitely not a b-road warrior. Also lacks any kind of steering feel. Lots of grip, but you need to wait before mashing the accelerator pedal due to traction issues - especially in sport plus engine mode that you need to be in to release the full exhaust noise.
- Evos get in your blood. But you already knew that, dude.
- When I told another old friend that I'd bought an Evo he said "That's definitely the car for you". He's right. (Although I also have an equally strong attraction to Porsche 911s.)
- Acquiring a decent Evo is not wasted money imho. Whereas if I'd bought a cheaper Subaru or an old Audi S3 for 4wd winter duties and summer track fun, they'd both be more "risky" as a depreciation prospect.
So it was both heart and head at the same time that prompted the Evo as the ideal 3rd car choice for the car enthusiasts family Rampant.
Also - I really enjoyed the DIY working on my old Evo and I can't really do that on either of our other cars. So having a "project" car was kind of a bonus. I also feel I can add value to this Evo 6. Haven't driven it yet, but I'm enjoying the ownership so far.
Even so, the M3 will still be the main commute car and do twice the miles of the Evo, I expect. Honestly the M3 is amazing. But the Evo scores in the few places the M3 misses. Perfect synergy.
Mark, once youíve drive the 6, I do wonder if youíd find it more fun then the old 9. I found that to be the case which is why Iíve an urge for a 6. My old 9 with almost 500bhp didnít put such grin on my face like bog standard 6 did, more fun, more nimble, even more comfort than the 9 I find it
I found the IX seats more comfortable - and at some point will look to later seats in the VI... but that's later in the project when I can free up a bit more funds.
I'll let you know on road manners later in the weekend :smthumbup
Can inly seem to find them in the US now though:
Thank you very much for that.
I've contacted a UK Authorised Dealer for PIAA products to see if they can supply here in the UK. $48 postage for a $27 product just feels all kinds of wrong - particularly when import duty can be added to the postage costs as well.
I paid circa £30 delivered from piaaonline.co.uk back in 2014.
Looking to see if I can work something out with shipping via a colleague in the US.
While you have the doors apart - good time to cavity wax :handsup:
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