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@FasTTurbo recently posted he wanted to see more of these threads. Careful what you wish for, Matt :).

Relax. Take a Seat. This is going to take a while. My apologies in advance for the “wall of text”, but that is the only way to tell this story.

I never intended for things to go this way. This build thread was virtually completed and ready for posting in August 2015. So, what happened? Well, my good friend @SD StreetRacer (Darian Wilcox) said, “Let’s go half-mile racing”. I said, “Fine. Let’s do it. Just let me get a C16 tune in my car.” And, then, this happened:





And, then, it happened again and again (more on this later). Ever since I made the decision to go APU, I felt this car was cursed. The details are not pretty although, when all is said and done, my years-long odyssey has a happy ending. But, before the happy ending came about, I was tested by a car like I have never been tested before. This is a cautionary tale that, hopefully, will prove helpful to others and contribute to the valuable library of information for which SF is world renowned. In retrospect, and with the benefit of 2020 hindsight, it reflects poor decision-making on my part, compounded by a generous amount of hubris and a series of incredibly bad tuning events that defied explanation and remain difficult to process years later.

I struggled mightily with whether to finish this project and, for years, I left it alone and did nothing. Finally, because I have learned the value of build threads to Supraforums in general, being able to honestly represent the car when answering questions and helping others learn from your experiences, I decided to attempt to finish up what I had started almost 5-years ago. More importantly, my younger sister sent me an article titled “Between 65 and Death” (Between 65 And Death) as part of my 69th birthday present. It had, and continues to, have, a significant, positive impact on me.

As long as I have been a member of SF, I have never started a thread in Shops and Part Reviews, criticizing a shop or individual. I mention this because a lot went wrong over a period of time and it reflects very poorly on one shop in particular. Still, this is a build thread, not a shop review, and it is important to keep that in mind when perusing this thread in its entirety. My deep seated uncomfortableness with this aspect of the thread was also a very key factor in me sitting on my hands for years rather than, finally, completing this thread. I had to also overcome my strong hesitation in discussing publicly the embarrassment I experienced going through this ordeal. But, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right? Or so we’re told.

Once I decided to go forward, I also struggled with the best way to combine activities beginning almost ten-years ago to those that occurred from 2017 to 2019. I’ve changed the tense from present to past, as appropriate, updated a good deal of the narrative below and added new narrative to bring this story to a merciful end. The solution is not an elegant one but, at least, provides a fairly detailed perspective to the reader as to how we got to this point.

2006 – 2016
What this thread is not about:
This was not a thread to document builds as conducted by Mike Davis (@MDSUPERSTAR), Dave Tanner (@DaveT), Danny Aguirre (@d_boy) or Jim Edwards, Jr. (@XCELR8). The builds on those cars were much more ambitious than mine, on a much higher level, and set incredibly high standards when it comes to comprehensively restoring our beloved JZA80s. My build was significantly less ambitious than those noted above (and others as well). You won’t find a cleared and painted engine bay, no cutting, welding and filling of holes, no mil-spec engine and body harnesses or wire tuck and no comprehensively updated interior emulating some of the very neat features of those state-of-the-art builds referenced above.

What this thread is about: This was my attempt to build a powerful, tractable, reliable street car that would offer me tremendous enjoyment and fulfillment as I piled on the miles. Piling on the miles was essential to my approach, so I resisted the temptation to re-spray the car, or re-do the interior, and concentrated on the things that would enhance my driving experience.

Of my three MKIVs, Eau Rouge is the one I drive the most so I replaced things as minor as my sun visors and driver’s side seatbelt and as major as my motor. If it helped me accelerate earlier and harder, corner and handle better, brake harder and better and enhance the already great OEM driving experience, it went on the car. If it didn’t help in those areas, and didn’t put me in the position of truly enjoying the car for the next 20-years or so, God willing, they weren’t a part of this build.
This was an old school build of an old school car for an old school guy, a car that was to be driven as God intended. Many important decisions were made before MKIV Supras became investment instruments, though there are only one or three decisions I would rethink if I knew then what we know now about the value of MKIVs in the automotive marketplace. Read on if your interest has been piqued.


BACKSTORY:

I purchased Eau Rouge in June 2006 so we recently celebrated our 13-year anniversary. I took a lot of good natured ribbing about how long the car would stay BPU. As things turned out, she remained BPU for exactly 4-years, and I was able to collect on a $200 bet that the car would not remain BPU for a period of time that escapes my memory.

I greatly enjoyed my BPU experience, particularly after I created a BPU hybrid with the installation of the HKS F-CON V Pro EMS. While there were many BPU cars that made more power, with fuel, air, spark and timing controlled by the V Pro, the car was an absolute torque monster as shown by the dyno sheets below:

91-octane Pump Gas dyno sheet. Note the two dyno tests, which occurred 6-months apart, had the exact same power number, with only a slight difference in torque:


VP 109 Motorsport Unleaded dyno sheet. On the 412 whp/419 rwt dyno run, the OEM clutch slipped, so we installed my OS Giken TR2CD twin-plate clutch. Without any other changes, the car picked up approximately 10 whp and 18 ft. lbs., as a result of the difference in rotating mass between the OEM and the OSG clutches:


If ever there was a point and squirt MKIV Supra Turbo, this was the car. At 60 mph and above, there was absolutely no need for downshifting; just open the throttle a bit and look out below! Over time, I took great pleasure in beating certain cars in roll-on racing without having to downshift. Fun times.

In June 2010, I purchased a 2010 Lexus IS-F. As a result, I ran out of garage space and Alex Shen, my good friend and the owner of SP Engineering, let me house the car at SPE until I solved my garage problem. While there, we decided a mild APU program would be implemented as time permitted. It’s a long story but the cliffs are we tested several turbos, conducted more than a few dyno runs and at least six compression/leak down tests, but we were never able to solve the motor’s power deficit issues in the, admittedly, limited time available to us.

In December of 2011, I solved my garage problem and brought the car home. The goal was to drive the car hard and attempt to figure out the problem once and for all (this on a 91-octane tune). I did this with gusto. While doing this, I discovered things I could put up with while the car was housed at SPE, and driven occasionally, bugged me to no end now that I could drive the car whenever I wanted. At the same time, I determined I did not want to lose the entire summer, and maybe some of fall, with a fix-it program that might not be any more successful than what we had previously experienced in our attempts to diagnose whatever ailments with which my motor was afflicted.

I had decided that, if I was going to do this right, it had to be fast, efficient and produce the desired results. I had previously purchased from [email protected] Logic the first PTE DBB CEA 6766 sold to a customer (my first non HKS/GReddy turbo). In another a major departure for me, I decided to pull the motor the car came with and to purchase a NIB built long block, drop it in the car, tune it and set sail. The reasons for this were my impatience, the fact I always wanted a spare motor for experimenting and, most importantly, SP Engineering my long-time shop, having gone through a couple near-death experiences during the Great Recession, went all-in on the Nissan R35 GTR as a way to put the company back on proper financial footing. As a result, work on Supras ceased for several years.

Not willing to wait, I purchased the built long block and went to Evasive Motorsports for installation and tuning. Evasive had recently hired SP Engineering’s chief tech of 13 years, the same guy who built and tuned Blackie. I mean, what could go wrong?

Before the Builds and Projects Subforum was a gleam in anybody’s eye, I had begun modding Eau Rouge to get her to be like a car I expected to spend many pleasurable miles in. Phases I—IV below summarize most of what I had done to the car by the time the car went to SPE in June 2010, with a few pics of some of the mods installed during that period.

Phase V was to be my first ever build thread on SF, but turned out to be my fifth such thread for the reasons noted herein (Meet Azure; FINALLY GOT MY SILVER SUPRA: Meet Bella; My "no, it's not really a build" anthracite hardtop; I keep going back in time! Finally found a mkiii - meet crimson tide; Blackie--a retrospective) It somewhat documents with pics my current APU build because the first one went undocumented. I used the word “somewhat” because I took too long in bringing this all together and, with the blown motors, trying to make sense of the sequence of events was challenging, to say the least.

PHASE I:

1. Installation of HKS Kansai Service lip spoiler
2. Color-matching the OEM side skirts
3. Trimming the rear quarter panels
4. Installing new IForged 3-Piece Legacy/Bridgestone RE050A Pole Position wheel/tire set-up
5. Installing Tanabe Sustec Pro SS coilovers
6. Installing a C’s short shifter
7. Installing a black (w/red stitching) TRD steering wheel
8. Installing a Valentine One Radar/Laser Detector
9. Installing the original headlamps from my black car in place of the ones that came
with the car

This is kinda sorta what the car looked like after Phase I:



PHASE II:
1. Installation of Titan Motorsports anti-roll bars
2. Installation of Do-Luck Floor Assist Bars
3. Installation of Sparco Harness Bar
4. Installation of Carbing front tower brace w/MCS
5. Installation of Cusco carbon fiber rear tower brace
6. Installation of HKS EVC VI boost controller (and removal of GReddy boost
controller)
7. Installation of HKS Turbo Timer (and removal of GReddy turbo timer)
8. Installation of HKS 60 mm P/H black RS DB meters for boost, EGT, oil
temperature and oil pressure in custom gauge pod (and replacing 52 mm Auto
Meter boost, pyrometer and AFR gauges on “A” pillar)
9. Installation of SP Engineering Intercooler Temperature Meter
10. Installation of ‘97/98 headlamps/turn signals (replacing the originals from my
black car)
11. Installation of HKS F-CON V Pro, Version 3.24
12. Installation of HKS Knock/Amp and Wide-Band 02 Sensor
13. Installation of HKS F-CON Mixture Controller
14. Installation of custom SPE MAF Eliminator Pipe
15. Installation of Earl’s Hyper-Firm steel braided brake lines
16. Installation of Philips 6000K HID kit
17. Installation of TRD silver OEM gauge bezels
18. Installation of Tein Flex w/EDFC coilovers (replacing my Tanabe Sustec Pro SS
coilovers)
19. Installation of SP Engineering Carbon Fiber Cooling Plate

PHASE III:
1. Installation of Sound Performance Billet Timing Belt Tensioner
2. Installation of old Fluidyne Radiator from Black Supra
3. Installation of new Water Pump (because we were in there anyway)
4. Installation of Polished OEM Twin Turbo Piping
5. Installation of Polished OEM Intake Manifold and Throttle Body
6. Polish and Install Valve Covers and Coolant Neck
7. Installation of TRD 10,000 RPM Tachometer
8. Installation of TRD Motor Mounts
9. Installation of TRD Tranny Mount
10. Installation of GReddy Extreme Timing Belt
11. Paint Sparkplug/Timing Gear Cover
12. Paint Carbing Front Tower Brace
13. Installation of Silver Hose Techniques Hose/Vacuum Line Kit
14. Color-match Renaissance Red Front Brembo BBK from Black Supra and install
on Red Supra
15. Color-match Renaissance Red BNIB Rear Brembo BBK (originally silver) and
install
16. Installation of D-1 Spec Blitz SUS Power Air Cleaner and 80 mm Blitz C1/C2
Core Adapter
17. Installation OS Giken TR2CD Twin-Plate Clutch w/Adapter
18. Powder Coat Wheels Black

Some pics from Phases II and III:








 

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Phase IV:

1. Installation of BNIB Black OEM Carpet
2. Installation of Tan Leather Sparco Milano Prestige Seats
3. Installation of TTC Aluminum Gauge Bezels (replacing the TRD plastic gauge bezels)
4. Installation of ATI Crank Dampener
5. Installation of GReddy Pulley Kit
6. Installation of BNIB OEM Dash Panels
7. Installation of Do-Luck Rear Cross Brace (replacing Sparco Harness Bar)
8. Installation of SP Engineering Two-piece Carbon Fiber Spark Plug/Timing Gear Cover
9. Installation of TiTek Carbon Fiber Gauge Pod (replacing custom gauge pod) (holds four 60 mm p/h
gauges)
10. Installation of Race Logic Adjustable Traction Control
11. Installation of HKS Hipermax III Coil/overs

Pics of some of the Phase IV mods:





Reupholstered rear seats to mimic the front Sparco Milano Prestige seats and Do- Luck Rear Cross Brace:




Phase V:

These projects have a lot of moving parts so, prior to the long block being installed, I had other coating, polishing and parts acquisition matters to attend to. To get ready for the new motor, of course the theme became out with the old:





My car is a 1995 and this was the first time, to my knowledge, the motor had been out of the car. As you can imagine, lots of crud built up over the previous 17-years greeted us in 2012 when the APU build began so some cleaning was desperately needed:





On the day my new built long block was delivered, my detailer and I spent seven hours cleaning the car from top to bottom, front to back and everywhere in between. My detailer has a very effective pressure washer; otherwise, we might still be there cleaning the car:
 

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While my detailer was cleaning the engine bay, I refreshed my valve covers, upper intake manifold, Titan cam gears and throttle body with some Mother’s aluminum metal polish. I also cleaned up my HKS Carbon ti exhaust and removed some scratches from the CF canister. The pic of my intake manifold sitting in a box on top of my V160 is the only “before” pic I have when my V160 was doing a very good imitation of Filthy McNasty (more on this later):




About the same time (2012) as I was reading through @TurboMatt’s review of Jack’s Transmissions, I marveled at the job Jack’s did in cleaning Matt’s V160. I knew I could not match Jack’s cleaning job, but I figured anything would be better than letting the strongest OEM gear box known to mankind go back in the car when everything around it was all cleaned up. Some degreasing, cleaning solvents and my detailer’s faithful pressure washer and she cleaned up pretty nicely, considering how dirty she was at the beginning:





More moving parts: With the general success of our clean-up, my HKS manifold, intake piping and downpipe/mid-pipe combo started to look a little shabby to my eyes so I had them re-coated and re-polished. The guys thought the parts were in excellent condition but, WTH, once I started cleaning and polishing, it had to include everything and coatings too. Even though I gave the coater and polisher plenty of time, both missed their deadlines by at least one month. I didn’t want to send my manifold to the same guys because I knew I would do something criminal.

Fortunately, my long-time turbo consultant, Performance Techniques of San Bernardino, CA, referred me to a coater they used for all their turbo work. Amazingly the place was only 3-miles from my home. They coated my HKS manifold in 2 ½ days and, even with a surcharge for the fast turnaround, their total price was exactly half the price of the previous work I had done. Some pics of the finished products after they were refreshed and ready to be installed:
 

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Some miscellaneous shots of my OS Giken TR2CD clutch, my ORIGINAL production prototype Fluidyne radiator, the one that begat all others (at least the quality ones), my new under engine plastics and my new HKS R-Type oil cooler all the way from HKS- Japan!








“Missing” parts: Well, not really. It’s just that, when I went to take pictures for this thread of my new OS Giken 1.5-way Super Lock LSD approximately 7-years ago, it had already been installed. You guys will have to take my word that “it’s in there”. It bolted right up and no special Toyota-provided shims were required. Installing the LSD so seamlessly is a tribute to both Toyota and OS Giken specifications and manufacturing prowess. At the time, I felt that, If I liked this unit, I planned on installing one in Blackie as well (this, in fact, did happen and Blackie has her own OS Giken Super Lock LSD).

For this build, I replaced my Denso 720 cc injectors with ID 1000 cc injectors. Did I mention this build was fast? The same thing that happened with my OSG LSD happened with my new injectors, so no real good pics of them. I think you guys are okay with that, though, because, LSD excepting, it was never my intention to show every screw, nut, bolt and install of this build. That would take too much time and time is what we didn’t have (that old impatience thing again).

Getting close: You guys would be proud of how much discipline I exercised with the motor out of the car. I have posted often on SF that, if you do not want an out of control project, never pull the motor unless you absolutely must (meaning you’ve blown the one that’s in there). Well, I had a perfectly good running motor, even if was considered down on power in the jaded world of APU MKIV Supras. I took to singing Gregorian chants, speaking in tongues and swearing off sweets….anything to avoid “Mission Creep”. I largely succeeded which is a good thing because a built long block is a lot more expensive than a NIB Toyota short block. Here were some “Getting close” pics for your viewing pleasure:
 

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BANG, BANG and BANG again!!! Yup, that’s what happened. Three built motors were blown, all during initial break-in/dyno tuning, all on 91-octane and all making less than 500 whp. If you’ve forgotten, here’s what that looks like. Just multiply the pics below by three:




To make matters worse, and as I learned over time, Evasive Motorsports had no clue why it was happening. HKS F-CON V Pro logs showed no signs of danger, I was told. Still, we had long-time former HKS ace tuner Jon Kuroyama examine my unit (and logs) and, then, sent it to HKS-Japan, only for it to get a clean bill of health from all involved.

I purchased a new OEM harness, new OEM coil packs and many other things upon accepting the recommendations of my service advisor and after reading through many troubleshooting threads on SF and elsewhere. My first built long block, as luck would have it, had assembly problems, including the wrong cams installed. My cams wound up on a 3.4L stroker motor in Australia and I had the cams that were supposed to be installed in that motor. I should have stopped right there, and started over, but I didn’t (that impatience thing again and hubris as well). Speaking of hubris, I have modified with success every car I’ve ever owned. With a “been there done that” attitude, supreme, but ultimately misplaced, confidence in my tech team, I suffered the consequences, and how.

The first compression/leak down test of my new motor was not encouraging, and the second C/LD test, with only slightly better numbers, showed traces of oil on a couple of plugs. I made a video and sent it to the builder of my long block. The builder readily admitted their issues and we agreed they would replace all the parts in the short block for free (at a cost to them of $6,952.90).

My built head had survived without any issues, as verified by [email protected] Flow Design. At this point, I decided to have Evasive build my second motor, tune it and set me free. Evasive’s chief tech was SP Engineering’s chief tech for 13 years and a person in whom I had absolute confidence. He was a certified F-CON V Pro tuner and had worked on all my cars with great success while being employed by SP Engineering (including building the motor and tuning Blackie).

Some in-progress motor build pics of the second motor are shown below:





 

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Remember my conversation with @SD StreetRacer about half-mile racing? Well, that conversation occurred in June 2015 and, in July, I delivered the car to Evasive for some power-deficit troubleshooting, a C16 dyno tune that would allow me to experience half-mile racing for the first time and complete the car in time for Supras In Vegas which occurred in October of that year.

In September 2015, I received a call from Evasive that Motor #2 had been blown on the dyno, with the car making approximately 483 whp. Now, here’s where it gets incredibly embarrassing for me. Rather than pulling the plug, more outside experts were consulted and absolutely nobody could lay a finger on a potential solution, or even postulate a plausible theory as to what the root causes might be. In my mind, I had already begun to think it was a tuning issue, but nobody, outside experts included, agreed that Evasive’s tuning was the issue.

During this period, I even had Justin Nenni of Tuning Concepts fame remote access Evasive’s computer while he looked everything over and we conducted a group discussion about how to proceed moving forward. I also borrowed @Craig Bush’s 950 whp Precision 6766 from [email protected] Performance and, later, another 6766 turbo from @FSR Motorsports Creations. We had fitted both turbos and dynoed the car, but the results were the same as they had always been. So, taking actions that exemplify the quintessential definition of insanity, we embarked upon the building of a third motor after the group convinced itself that its cause was just and we were righteous.

BANG!!!
Went motor #3 in October of 2016. You guessed it, while on the dyno during the first attempt to find that ever elusive power for which we had been looking for four years. I keep detailed records on all my cars. The file below is the one I maintain for Eau Rouge:




I reviewed all my invoices with Evasive and prepared a document that summarized the dates, parts purchased, services provided, oil changes and type of oil, break-in miles incurred, invoice amounts and the results of various tests, including C/LD results. Once this summary was complete, I requested a meeting with Evasive ownership.

One week prior to the meeting, and completely out of the blue, I received an email from Alex [email protected] Engineering. That email was followed up by a lengthy telephone conversation, the gist of which was to let me know SPE would begin working on Supras again, but only for its long-time customers whose cars they had previously built. During this conversation, I related to him all that had transpired with Evasive since he had last seen the car. We agreed to follow up in person after my meeting with Evasive ownership.

At the meeting with Evasive, the owner did not show, but the owner’s representative quickly agreed that Evasive would build me a new motor (motor #4), install it, tune it and deliver the car to me free of charge. I agreed to the tuning part because, unbeknownst to Evasive, I planned to have two additional F-CON V Pro tuning experts, along with me, present at every step of the tuning process. Unfortunately, this part of my plan went up in ashes.

Even though Evasive had committed to providing me the entire package, including tuning, I received a call informing me the car was ready to be picked up. Long story short, Evasive refused to tune the car and sent me a video of the car idling after the motor #4 was built and installed. It was clear to me ownership had lost confidence in the company’s ability to successfully tune another built 2JZ-GTE and did not want to take the chance of building me another motor for free. So, with very short notice, the car was hauled from Evasive to SP Engineering, even though SPE was not prepared to take in the car at that time. As a result, I had the car hauled to my older sister’s (RIP) nearby home because, once again, I was out of garage space.


Phase VI: 2017: The Resurrection:

“We’re going to need more eyes”, said [email protected] after several long conversations about what to do with the car after it was delivered by Evasive. Normally, shops will not take on the work of another shop, especially if trouble can be anticipated. This was most definitely the case with SPE, so work on my car would never have happened if Alex and I were not like brothers and he had not been working on my cars since 1994 (even before SPE was founded in 1996). If motor #4 popped while in the custody of SPE, and with the history between the two companies, all that would result is a bunch of never-to-be-resolved finger pointing. Tuning and troubleshooting a motor it did not build created quite the reputational risk for SPE and the significance of [email protected]’s decision to help out a friend under such circumstances cannot be overstated.

Pic of car mounted up on its way to SPE:


Inspection of car at SPE before work could begin:


“More eyes” meant out with my beloved HKS F-CON V Pro and in with the Syvecs S6+, SPE’s EMS of choice at the time work commenced on my car:



Before SPE installed the Syvecs S6+ EMS, it removed the intake manifold, fuel rail, de-pinned the wiring harness and pinned a new wiring harness. SPE also checked and diagnosed the CEL codes on the F-CON V Pro and OEM ECU, the functionality of the boost pressure sensor, traction control system/throttle position, conducted wiring removal of the HKS Lambda Sensor to AFK unit and HKS MAP + IAT sensor, swapped the lambda sensor, changed the boost control to the Syvecs solenoid and conducted boost leak testing.

Additional troubleshooting included calibrating the throttle position sensor, testing the HKS GT II wastegate for functionality and boost leaks, correcting a miss at 3500-4000 rpm, including resoldering certain connectors to eliminate the miss, installation of a custom, mil-spec harness, R&R the OEM traction control throttle plate shaft, installation of all new fuel lines and sensors and installation of new wiring/relays for staged fuel pumps.

While removing the HKS fuel rail and “BNIB” 1000 cc Denso fuel injectors, it discovered a fuel leak, that all six injectors were bent, that the fuel rail was not sitting flat going to the lower intake runners and lathed the lower intake injector boss as a result. SPE also discovered when removing my Race Logic Adjustable Traction Control (Syvecs has its own traction control), the Race Logic was not tapped into the fuel injectors; only the power source.

Some pics of the troubleshooting process:







As can be deduced from the narrative above, a comprehensive makeover was conducted of my fuel system, first as part of the process for installing my new EMS, and, second as part of the process for the future installation of my new PHR-based E-85 fuel system. This entailed installing new Injector Dynamics 1340 cc injectors, a new injector harness, all soldered and including very cool Sakata Engineering gold billet connectors:
 

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The Syvecs S6+ is a plug ‘n play EMS that handles all the typical fuel, air, timing and spark needs of the motor. It includes various protection strategies, as well as operates the HVAC, power windows, cruise and other items normally handled by the factory ECU (www.syvecs.com). For a set and forget guy like me, it meets all of my needs and more. It has since been superseded by the Syvecs S7+, with the primary differences between the S6+ and S7+ being more logging memory, a second CANBUS and improved firmware for the S7+.

As a long-term V Pro guy (V. 3.1 remains installed in Blackie), I charted some of the progress regarding the EMS installation as shown in the pics below:






During various points of all the work above, the car was placed on the dyno to see if the work completed was having the proper effect. With a brand new short block built by Evasive (CP, Carillo, SPS Carr bolts, L9 head studs, welded timing gear, ATI damper, built cylinder head and the like), dyno work proceeded slowly and carefully. As part of this process, the Syvecs S6+ knock sensor was recalibrated, cams degreed, valve timing checked, testing of new MAP sensors x 2 and a very weird (for me) pressure differential problem resolved, which involved higher pressure on the throttle body side (rather than the compressor side). By the time all this work was done, we were ready to let her rip on the dyno.

As a result of all the above, my initial 91-octane dyno number is shown below:


With a few more adjustments here and there, the car wound up making 619 whp on its 91-octane tune.

At this juncture, I focused on enjoying the car and my new engine management set-up and Alex and I made plans to schedule some more dyno time to, finally, get me the C16 tune I had been after all these years. On a whim, I googled E-85 stations near me and, amazingly, several cropped up within 10-miles of where I live. I had long given up hope of ever having E-85 readily available to me, as years passed without a station within 30-miles of me. Maybe my luck was changing after all.

Alex and I quickly decided to order Powerhouse Racing’s E-85 fuel system for our cars. Even though I purchased the triple pump hanger, I only purchased two Walbro 485s in light of my 1340 cc injectors. I figured that, if I ever wanted to go really big, I would purchase new, larger injectors and a third fuel pump when that time comes around, if ever.




I have always had SPE’s Intercooler Temperature Meter located in the ash tray position in Blackie and Eau Rouge. SPE modified my set-up to include the ethanol content meter as shown below. I like this a lot:
 

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As I previously reported in other threads, the SPE dynos, both the Dynojet and the Mustang, went on the blink around the same time, so dyno tuning on E-85 was challenging at best. Even so, at the same boost level as my 91-octane tune, the car made 730 whp. Unfortunately, I do not have dyno graphs for the 619 whp 91-octane map or one for the E-85 tune. I hope to correct this at some point in the future when the SPE Dynojet is back on line.

It must be an age thing but, normally, I would be all ready to make some more power. After driving the car for quite a bit, it meets so well the goals I set for the car all those years ago, I am very inclined to leave her as is. I’ll never say never, but theE-85 mid-range in this car is just nuts. Plus, in the time it took to order the system, and have it installed, another station with E-85 cropped only 3.5 miles from my house. At $2.95/gal., I feel like I’ve died and gone to gasoline heaven.

Cars are made to be driven. And, when they sit around doing nothing, things like this can happen:


I’m just glad it was the left driver’s side tire rather than one of the rear tires, given all the dyno work we conducted. So, rather than tempt fate, I purchased a new set of tires in sizes I had been contemplating for some time: 275/35/18s, front, replacing 265/35/18s and 295/35/18s, rear, replacing 295/30/18s:


Now, I know this thread has been rather boring in the sense the exterior of the car looks today like it looked almost 13-years ago when I first began my mod program. I offer no apologies in that regard since, as I said at the outset, this is not one of those builds. I do take pride, however, in the fact she probably looks better today than she did when I first picked her up.

It’s one thing to keep a car clean when it’s not driven much, if at all. It’s another deal altogether when you drive as much as I do and can keep up with the challenge of keeping them clean and tidy. My efforts in this regard are greatly aided by the fact that I’m retired and I have an excellent detailer to help me out. Occasionally, when one of my lip spoilers is looking a little shopworn (pun intended), I switch up from my TiTek carbon fiber Kansai-style lip spoiler to my genuine HKS Kansai version, which was used by SPE to develop and produce the TiTek.

Here’s the TiTek:


And, here’s the genuine article. This pic was taken last week right after a wash and wax:


LESSONS LEARNED AND, HOPEFULLY, IMPARTED:
  • I have pretty good instincts that have served me well over my 69 years. I rarely ignore them, but this, or things like this, can happen when you do;
  • Bad things can happen when you plow through red flags (see ignoring your instincts above);
  • If you are professional and accommodating in your relationships like I am, do not allow yourself to be taken advantage of as a result of these otherwise positive attributes;
  • Perseverance and the ability to overcome adversity are two of the important keys to success;
  • Previous successes are not an accurate predictor of future success, especially if your efforts are not accompanied by #4 above; and,
  • Unchecked hubris will, eventually, be checked. It’s not a matter of if. It’s only a matter of when.
Well folks, there you have it, my “2010, A Supra Odyssey”. If you made it this far, you have my undying gratitude.

Peace.

Ken.

 

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iSPOOL
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1,138 Posts
Man that was an awesome read Ken. So many twists and turns with this build but like you said, perseverance and overcoming adversity were key to finish Eau Rouge to your liking.

This is why I enjoy this forum.
 

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Registered
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768 Posts
Such an amazing build! On a side note, did the firewall insulation pad come factory in you engine bay? Not sure I've seen that before but it looks very nice!
 

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Registered
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1,482 Posts
What a treat to read this thread Ken, @FasTTurbo was right about needing more threads like this.
There is a lot of "punches to the gut" going on when reading through the thread with all the engine setbacks. I can feel your pain when reading it.

KenHenderson said:
While removing the HKS fuel rail and “BNIB” 1000 cc Denso fuel injectors, it discovered a fuel leak, that all six injectors were bent, that the fuel rail was not sitting flat going to the lower intake runners and lathed the lower intake injector boss as a result.
Any idea why the rail was not sitting flat? I ask because I've had difficulties installing fuel rails flat in the past, and have taken many attempts to make the injectors line up properly. With each attempt I followed that up with pressurizing the system to look for leaks until there were no leaks at the lower injector bosses.

KenHenderson said:
Unchecked hubris will, eventually, be checked. It’s not a matter of if. It’s only a matter of when.
Funny...and so true. Well done on the build, I'm glad we finally get to see all the Eau Rouge build pictures in one thread.
 

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Master Shit Fixer
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3,272 Posts
My boss is going to be pissed! I got on (at work) to read a few quick posts, and ran into this. Couldn't stop reading. Great job Ken, cool story. Glad to see you have the car running like you always wanted. She's a beauty.
 

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Kappa Check 1 2
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691 Posts
Thank you for sharing and more importantly, thank you for all the transparency regarding all this, what an emotional trip!

Perseverance deserves a bold treatment in this thread. That's a lot to go through, sort out each time, and stay hopeful in each iteration. I've been down the road of instilling faith in a shop, that shop royally setting me back quite a ways with nothing to show for it and in fact, re-doing all of the work done out of fear that ignoring those one or two things that I didn't check would bite me HARD down the road. It's not a good feeling, very humbling indeed!

Glad to hear of the happy ending and Eau Rouge being in the state that you envisioned it! She looks great and best of luck to many miles of enjoying and boosting!

-Rich
 

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Champagne Papi
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5,690 Posts
The Evasive Motorsports portion of this story really gets me going, mostly because I know what a great guy you are and having dealt with something similar recently with another shop I know how helpless it can make you feel. Like you, I'll be making sure to hold them accountable.

That being said, very happy to see you bring Eau Rouge back into the spotlight. I was starting to think she was the first to go to make room for the TT flat plane v8 :D
 

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Whenever I see you post in a thread I will read it knowing there will be great insight.

Thank you for this exceptional journey and it's great to hear the car is what you want it to be!
 

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handy with the steel
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378 Posts
Awesome thread Ken, shes a beauty. I thoroughly enjoyed reading all about the trials and tribulations, and oggling her in person at SIV18:

 

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Super Moderator
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Ken, WOW!

What a wild and unpredictable ride! I am glad that Eau Rouge is finally back on the road with all things right in the world. E85 is fantastic and consistent E85 is simply some of the best stuff to happen to turbocharged gasoline engines. I'm very happy that you're finally able to enjoy it!

Great pics, and what a roller-coaster story with such a fantastic Supra! The best part of the story, of course, being the happily ever after when you're finally enjoying all the fruits of your trouble,

🍺
 
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