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Author Topic: Initial planning for my XR2 project (9/26/2020 update)  (Read 5975 times)

ShelbyZ

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Initial planning for my XR2 project (9/26/2020 update)
« on: December 30, 2014, 05:54:44 PM »

Picked up a non-running '94 XR2 project back in September. If you missed it, here is an introductory thread I made in the General section: http://www.teamcapri.com/forum/index.php/topic,3219.0.html

My goals for the car are as follows:

1. Fix current mechanical issues.

-Bought the car with a blown headgasket, which the previous owner tried to remedy with some of that metallicy stop leak crap, which ultimately sprayed out of the waterpump seal. I'm guessing the bottom end is fine, but will have the head checked and decked if needed. Once good, I'll secure everything with ARP head studs, then add a new waterpump and timing belt etc.

-I'm guessing the PO's cooling issues started with a radiator fan that quit working. There's a whole rats nest of cut and spliced wires at the front drivers side of the engine bay, and the fan was ultimately wired directly to the battery... My plan is to graft in an eBay dual core Honda Civic radiator, with a slim line fan wired to an independent fan controller.

-The shifter is horribly sloppy, so I'm going to toss in some of those Corksport "Bronzoil" bushings.

-The most likely original VJ14 is completely seized, which im guessing probably came from coolant being present in the oil after the HG went. I'm assuming that due to the seizure, if possible a rebuild will likely call for more than just a rebuild kit. However, I haven't been able to find anywhere where replacement RHB5 turbines and/or compressors can be realistically or affordably purchased. I also don't want to go on a wild goose chase and shell out money for a used VJ14, since I will eventually be upgrading. I have a buddy who has a whole bunch of stuff laying around from his days of being into F2T cars, including a bunch of VJ11's and a T-bird/11 hybrid, but I don't want to go that route. My plan here leads me to...

2. Make an impressive HP/ET gain while spending as little money as possible.

-As stated in my other thread, I also own an AWD 1G DSM. I've been modding and repairing those cars for almost 12 years now, and have compliled a mass collection of used parts for them almost worthy of getting me an appearance on the show "Hoarders". Combined with the obvious need for some manageable fabrication, I'd like to re-purpose whatever I can from that collection to make upgrades to the Capri. I've found a cheap stainless log style exhaust manifold on Ebay that is meant for B6ZE Miata's, that orients the turbo in the same style as the B6T mani. The biggest plus though, is that it is flanged for DSM style TD05 turbo's. I have plethora of these from stock 14B's all the way up to genuine MHI 16G's. All of which way outflow 11/14 and Tbird hybrids. I'd like to mate this with a O2 housing, BOV, 390CC injectors/resistor box, and an aftermarket intake pipe all from my DSM collection. I also have some DSM intercoolers, as well as access to Probe and EVO 8/9 IC's. Only real fab work will be modifying an O2 housing, making a downpipe and getting crafty with plumbing for various things.

-All of this will be tied together with a Rocketchip, Walbro 255/FPR and a fuel pump rewire. All also most likely toss in an aftermarket clutch to handle the extra load.

-I'll also be putting it on a diet, removing AC, cruise control, power steering and any unneeded intake or emissions components.
3. Perform some suspension/brake upgrades
-Pretty easy. Freshen up the suspension, do the Galant rotor upgrade, possibly lowering springs and sway bar(s).

4. Devise a unique tuning solution to make even more power
-Obviously the Rocketchip will only take me so far. What I'd eventually like to do, is further tap into my DSM stockade to be able to tune the Capri. Basically the Capri will be converted to use a 1G turbo DSM engine harness and ECU. Then, I can use the pretty easy to use DSMLink to tune it. It's actually been done a few times on Miata's and some 240SX's. The BP/B6ZE Miata's coilpack and CAS are physically identical to what is used on a 1G DSM, which will help eliminate some headache. With DSMLink I'd be able to:
-Use much better flowing air meters, or switch to speed density
-Use much larger injectors and tune for E85
-Drop in a set of B6ZE Kelford 272 cams that I often drool over
-Program in things like launch control or no lift shift
-Break things faster...

I should be getting to tear down very shortly. I'll be upgrading with my progress as it happens.

Let me know what you think.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 01:19:58 PM by ShelbyZ »
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2008 Honda Fit Sport
1994 Dodge Dakota Sport V8
1993 Mercury Capri XR2
1993 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
1991 Dodge Spirit R/T

JJ

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2015, 10:52:30 PM »

Sounds ambitious!  Good luck!
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mitch1204

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2015, 06:26:42 PM »

Them fan switches are very expensive.

Sounds like a plan. I should get done around August. The body and interior is last. Then I'm going to drive and drive until something else breaks. :)

What Capris that are left in 5 years will be some nice ones.
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Rocketman

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2015, 01:57:08 AM »

Aftermarket clutch will be a must. I really like ACT's super street disk with the HD pressure plate. Fidanza makes a nice billet flywheel that makes a good combo if you've got the bank for it.

A front strut bar will help.

The 14/11 is quite simple to make, if only to get you back up & running. And the 11/Tbird is no laughing matter. Don't rule them out. Mitsu turbos have been done, they seem to pair nicely. I rode in one, the guy welded the flange to the stock manifold. The hotsides don't choke the engine like the IHI units, but they do spool a bit later as tradeoff.

There was someone here who converted the electrical system to a Honda ecu to run Chrome or Hondata, not sure which - he didnt provide any technical details. It can be done. Megasquirt is quite popular and likely easier to wire in than an OE from another vehicle, and can be configured to handle literally anything

Good luck! Look forward to updates!






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1.8L Turbo All Wheel Drive Capri... the "GTXR2"


ShelbyZ

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2015, 04:47:00 PM »

Aftermarket clutch will be a must. I really like ACT's super street disk with the HD pressure plate. Fidanza makes a nice billet flywheel that makes a good combo if you've got the bank for it.

A front strut bar will help.

The 14/11 is quite simple to make, if only to get you back up & running. And the 11/Tbird is no laughing matter. Don't rule them out. Mitsu turbos have been done, they seem to pair nicely. I rode in one, the guy welded the flange to the stock manifold. The hotsides don't choke the engine like the IHI units, but they do spool a bit later as tradeoff.

There was someone here who converted the electrical system to a Honda ecu to run Chrome or Hondata, not sure which - he didnt provide any technical details. It can be done. Megasquirt is quite popular and likely easier to wire in than an OE from another vehicle, and can be configured to handle literally anything

Good luck! Look forward to updates!

For a clutch, I'm probably going to use a tried and trusted budget approach from the AWD DSM world. AN XTD/Kupp/etc. "Stage 4", but swap the 6-puck disk for a nicer full face disk.

Only reason I'd like to use Mitsu turbo's is because I have about a dozen of them, and parts to build/rebuild about a dozen more. I've also dealt with rebuilding RHB5 turbo's in the past and can't stand dealing with those tiny screws and the scarcity of replacement turbines and compressors. In comparison, TD05 Mitsu turbo's are a breeze to rebuild, and new parts are still readily available and affordable. I will most likely frankenstein the B6T manifold with one of the many undesireable 1G DSM manifolds I have laying around.

The Honda ECU swap is interesting too. I've seen the DSM swap done on a Miata, and it didn't seem to be too involved. Between myself and a few DSM buddies, I have access to just about everything I'll need for the swap, as well as a ton of experience with DSMLink. I'll probably get a junk yard engine harness from another XR2 before hacking into the cars. Plus, I can use the Link and ECU from my DSM to test the setup. This whole thing will be way down the road though. I'll probably be in touch with you when the car is ready to run, and will probably run a Mitsu turbo and a Rocketchip at reasonable boost while I address other issues.

Another sub project that I have been looking into is playing with different B6 cams. I saw an old thread on here where someone used a B6 Miata exhaust cam and saw great results, but it had me scratching my head. On paper, it looks identical to the B6T ex. cam, just degreed for more N/A overlap. The cam that intrigues me, is the '94-96 B6 MX3 exhaust cam. The MX3 motor has the CAS on the exhaust cam, so in thoery it could be used as an intake cam in the B6T. It has a 245* duration, over the B6T intake cams 236*. Might make for some more gains.

I'll be starting the teardown process and some updates here, as soon as my broken WRX is fixed and out of the garage (and hopefully sold...).
« Last Edit: January 26, 2015, 05:03:05 PM by ShelbyZ »
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2008 Honda Fit Sport
1994 Dodge Dakota Sport V8
1993 Mercury Capri XR2
1993 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
1991 Dodge Spirit R/T

ShelbyZ

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2015, 01:03:55 PM »

Haven't yet made any progress on the Capri, but I did finally get a plate for it...

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2008 Honda Fit Sport
1994 Dodge Dakota Sport V8
1993 Mercury Capri XR2
1993 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
1991 Dodge Spirit R/T

ShelbyZ

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2020, 01:19:34 PM »

Since I've been on this forum a little more lately for research purposes, I figured I'd post an update on this:

Sadly, the '94 XR2 is likely no more. The car ended up being super rotten in the floors and rockers. On top of that, it needed everything I listed in the OP along with tires, a soft top, a suspension refresh and who knows what else I might have discovered had the car ever ran and drove again. The final nail in the coffin was when I pulled the motor, tore into it and found that the previous owner had practically filled the entire cooling system with that "Stop Leak" trash... and not the easier to get rid of glittery kind, it was the chalky stuff that turns to a solid. Most of the coolant passages on the head and block were cemented shut, and it had also spilled into multiple cylinders. I was never able to get the block to spin.

The sliver lining is that many of it's parts ended up going to members on here and the Facebook group after I made the difficult decision to part it out in late 2016. The shell was picked up by a scrap guy in January 2017. I do however still have the window sticker that was in the glove box.

One of my "secondary justifications" for picking up the 94 XR2 was that if the car was too far gone, it would at least furnish a lot of the necessary bits to eventually scratch a B6T Festiva off my project bucket list. I still had that in mind when I parted the car out, so I kept the drivetrain, harness, ECU and all that and tucked it away in my garage for when I found the right Festiva swap candidate.

Fast forward to March 2018 when a shitbox hoard enabler buddy of mine alerted me to a $1000 93 XR2 for sale about 3 hours away. Ad said it ran and drove but needed an alternator and the trans was possibly going. I certainly didn't need it, but it did kind of make sense from an investment standpoint since I had the trans from the 94 XR2, and at the very least I could part it out and have a running engine for a hypothetical Festiva swap. Kidding around, I told my buddy we could get it that weekend if it was $500. He then messaged the seller and got them to agree to it. Risking my now fiancee putting a pillow over my face in my sleep, my buddy and I towed it home.

The car was kind of an interesting case at the time. Despite being in OH and having some documented history in IN, the body is solid and almost completely rust free outside of a decently large and noticeable spot in front of the drivers rear wheel well. There was a lot of evidence that points to it probably starting it's life being owned by snowbirds (IE retired person or couple who live somewhere north during the warm months and then head south for winter) who towed it behind a motorhome: The aforementioned lack of rust, a huge tow bar welded under the front of the car, faded paint and clear more consistent with that of a sunnier climate, a receipt for new tires that shows the car had 33k miles in 2004 and one of those carpet dash covers with Capri embroidered into it that for some reason I can only see an old person being into (no offense).

The rest of the car however showed that it had a harder life somewhere after 2004 and on it's way to 126k. The interior was trashed with dirty ripped seats and trashed door panels. The drivers window motor was broken, with the glass being held in place with some wood door stops, which no doubt exacerbated the fact the guy before me had smoked in it. Luckily it came with a hard top installed, because the soft top had two handle-less latches and looked like Wolverine had tried to break in. As the PO noted, there was definitely an issue with the charging system and the trans was a gamble between nearly non-existent shifter bushings or something bad internally. The brakes weren't great either.

At some point in the days after we brought it home, my buddy and I fiddled around with the alternator belt, removed the hard top and drove it with the top down to put some gas in it. This was early March in MI, so the reaction at our local Speedway was pretty priceless... This including some guy recording us on a full size iPad. It was at this point I decided to just fix up and play around with Capri. When we got home, we didn't have an alternator belt anymore.

Here's a run down of the project since then:

-Upon addressing the alternator, I found the water pump leaking, so I ended up replacing the WP, timing belt and alternator (with a thicker belt). I also did some tune up stuff like plugs/wires/cap/rotor and a valve cover gasket among other stuff I've probably forgotten. I also ripped the bandaid off modifying the car by deleting the AC and cruise control, and adding a high flow filter and adapter. Still being winter in MI and me being too lazy to put the hardtop back on, I left it in the garage and waited for spring to come around to drive it again.

-Within a couple weeks of bringing the car home, a close by "You Pull" junkyard put out a complete and straight 91 XR2. My buddy and I ran up there as soon as we could and found what was a pretty decent example with really clean and intact interior. I spent nearly what I paid for my car to bring home the seats and door panels, window motors, soft top latches and tons of spare stuff from under the hood and the interior. Unfortunately the soft top was no good. We ended up installing all of the interior pieces and giving the inside a good detail.

-Once the salt seemed to be off the roads and we had a decently warm Spring weekend, I pulled it out of the garage for a quick drive to get some ice cream with my fiancee. On the way back I decided to wind up 2nd a tad. Upon making a normal shift to 3rd, the shifter kind of stopped halfway, then the car made a huge bang and the shifter kind of put itself the rest of the way into third. For the rest of the drive the trans was a mixed bag between driving normal, revving like it was in neutral or some kind of grinding in between. I could also smell some kind of oil. I was able to get it home, where I found the diff had tried to escape.

-At that point, I had some other projects that were a higher priority, so the Capri sat in the garage for a while. In the meantime, I started collecting parts for when I'd eventually get around to it.

-I pulled the motor and trans last summer and made a ton of progress: Installed the trans from the 94 with the budget clutch setup I mention in the OP and new shifter bushings (although just the green KIA bushings not the bronzoil), put together and installed a VJ11/Tbird hybrid with a ported hotside and O2 housing, installed a practically new soft top as well as a fully rebuilt suspension (IE control arms, rear subframe, etc.) with poly bushings and a "custom" adjustable strut/coil setup from someone parting a Capri out. I also figured out the 205 tires were too big, so I found a nicer set of three spokes and get some new 195's put on. The motor/trans went back in the car but unfortunately, half the people I know ended up getting married that summer and fall and some other projects got in the way before I could figure out an intercooler set up and exhaust and button up the rest of the car.

-Got back into it this summer: My buddy painted one of my spare valve covers to look like it would've come from the factory. We also cut up the front to install an EMUSA front mount and plumbed it with a universal eBay 2.5" pipe/coupler kit and also used some to make an intake to go to the Tbird compressor housing and T25 inlet adapter.

I just got the last part I was waiting on in the mail today. and hoping to have the car finished tomorrow. Although I suspect I'm going to have to address the alignment and height on the custom suspension. It's also going to be running on an exhaust that costs just of a few inches of the stock downpipe, which I'm sure will need to be addressed.

As for the rest of the plans I had in the OP, I think for now I'm going to re-wire the fuel pump, install a boost gauge, Rocketchip and MBC and enjoy the car as is (OK, well I'll probably add an exhaust too) at 15/16psi.

I actually had a whole bunch of pictures for this, but need to find a good host since Photobucket blows now. Once I figure that out, I'll post them up.
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2008 Honda Fit Sport
1994 Dodge Dakota Sport V8
1993 Mercury Capri XR2
1993 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
1991 Dodge Spirit R/T

jdp

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Re: Initial planning for my XR2 project (9/26/2020 update)
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2020, 09:55:15 PM »

thanks for update.  Look forward to pictures.
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John