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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While I've owned my Supra for 18ish years now it's been parked for the last 8. It's always been one of those 'when the kids get bigger and I have more time to work on it' things. Well now my twins are turning 4 this month and my oldest is 6 so I'm all out of excuses. Back in the day I used to go everywhere in the Supra. Delivered pizza in it, drove from Orlando to Chattanooga multiple times, drove ALL over FL to go to shows...

After totaling my daily ('13 Dart GT) in December I decided it was time to get serious about getting the Supra on the road again as my 'summer daily'. It was driven hard and put away rough so I'm basically starting from scratch on an almost 35 year old turbo targa.

The drivers door lock froze up on me and I was never able to get the door open around the time I got a daily so I went to a couple meets Dukes of Hazard style then ended up parking it in my father in laws 'barn'. He was ready to retire and move to FL but passed away from COPD before he got the chance. My wife and I bought his place from the bank and have been working on building our family and repairing the house/landscaping ever since.

A couple years ago my 'kids' bought me new shocks/bump stops/top hats for fathers day but I only ever found time to do the rears. I eventually got the door ripped off and near the beginning of quarantine found a guy an hour away parting out a white package with blue interior. It's rusty and nasty but it opens and closes and the window goes up and down and came with a non ripped pair of blue front seats and carpet for $400. I've got bigger fish to fry before finding another door but it's on my long list. My wife also got me an NRG wheel and hub setup this past Christmas.

First order of business? Order parts. This is the only picture I found of the pile but it grew substantially from here. My goal was to change all fluids, hoses, and belts (along with the water pump) before driving it.


This past week I decided to take a few days off and try to get her on the road ASAP.

How she's been sitting for a while.



Day one I got the front shocks swapped out. I put the TEMS replacements in myself almost 15 years ago. Sad to lose TEMS but eventually I'll go coilover anyways.



Day two I started on the fluids. Diff first (first time since owning the car so it's quarter million mile fluid).


Got rid of the oversized stock shifter while putting in the MT90. Changed the oil as well.


Day 3 was mostly spent wondering why I decided to do so much work to such an old car with such an old back and a knee that's been bad for the better part of 30 years. Got the plugs and wires swapped out and started coolant flush #1. Doing straight water twice followed by a proper flush before finally changing the hoses and water pump. Also got lucky and snagged an SOS appt (MI version of the DMV). $15 later and the plate from the Dart now belongs to the Supra.


Fresh 93 beats 5+ year old 87 all day.


Still rough but she's alive again. 馃榾


Today's plans involve getting the horn working, swapping the water again, and taking a short trip somewhere. My work has an office 2 miles from the house that needs visiting. Maybe in a week or so I'll feel comfortable enough to hit the highway to visit a different office about 10 miles away.

Installed the hub a couple months ago before realizing I needed a Honda spring to make the horn work. Got the spring in hand now.



Truth hurts:


Thanks for reading. Near term plans include finishing the coolant flushes and replacing the coolant hoses, accessory belts/pulleys, and timing belt/pulley. I also need to swap the good passenger seat fabric to my base and get it installed. Beyond that I've got a list of little things like getting a new engine under tray, sourcing 550s and a Lex AFM, finding time to sand/spray bomb various parts...

With any luck I'll make it out to ATOM and a Naber Racing BBQ this year.
 

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I absolutely LOVE seeing MKIII's come back from the brink with their OG owners.

I've got my very first Supra, an '87T hardtop 5spd, stashed on a family friend's property and I'm very much looking forward to finally getting it to my new house & workshop for a similar 'revival'.

If you get the chance, I'd pull apart your original door, I'd bet the only issue is the latching parts and you can swap the 1991 parts into your original door and spare yourself the trip to the paint shop.
I'm also super jealous of now nicely your rear hatch trim pieces have survived!

Looking forward to more updates 馃嵑
 

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Thanks for the post. I love reading other people鈥檚 stories and especially like high quality English and pictures to go along with it. There鈥檚 no real substitute for the forum format.

@aaronc222 definitely involve the kids! I have cars and I鈥檝e always tried to involve the kids and it feels like my daughter loves daddy鈥檚 Supra cars more than my son sometimes lol.

I have a few Lexus AFMs and a shit ton of mk3 parts I鈥檒l probably never use. Send me a PM when I get off my back I鈥檒l sort you out with one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Good to see some familiar names still kicking around here!!! 馃嵑

If you get the chance, I'd pull apart your original door, I'd bet the only issue is the latching parts and you can swap the 1991 parts into your original door and spare yourself the trip to the paint shop.
I'm also super jealous of now nicely your rear hatch trim pieces have survived!
Sadly I had to destroy the lock to get it to let go of the metal loop. I've been pulling the non rusty odds and ends off the blue door as I have time.

The hatch trim doesn't look anywhere near as good in person as it does in pics. All the years it spent in the FL sun took a toll. At least it has a nice barn now though.

Thanks for the post. I love reading other people鈥檚 stories and especially like high quality English and pictures to go along with it. There鈥檚 no real substitute for the forum format.

@aaronc222 definitely involve the kids! I have cars and I鈥檝e always tried to involve the kids and it feels like my daughter loves daddy鈥檚 Supra cars more than my son sometimes lol.

I have a few Lexus AFMs and a shit ton of mk3 parts I鈥檒l probably never use. Send me a PM when I get off my back I鈥檒l sort you out with one.
Not sure I'd call my English 'high quality' but I guess it's better than some of the spam on the FB pages. Definitely can't beat the forum.

All 3 of the kids love cars so hopefully at least one of them will help me out from time to time.

PM incoming. I wasn't sure there'd be a whole lot floating around at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I ended up getting the horn working. The ignition got stuck in the process so I spent 45 minutes pulling the cylinder, finding NOTHING wrong with it, and putting it back together where it worked fine.

Made the trip up to my local office just over 2 miles away as well. Felt nice to be back on the road.

-edit-
Pic from the office.
 

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Glad to hear you're diving back in! I'm in a similar situation -- blew the motor moving from CA to CO and rebuilt it. Had some tuning/cooling issues when I fired it back up after doing the ring seat pulls, and got fed up...so it's been sitting for almost 9 years. I've been getting the itch lately to get things sorted out and running again though, so I feel you. Best of luck bringing her back!
 
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I ended up getting the horn working. The ignition got stuck in the process so I spent 45 minutes pulling the cylinder, finding NOTHING wrong with it, and putting it back together where it worked fine.

Made the trip up to my local office just over 2 miles away as well. Felt nice to be back on the road.

-edit-
Pic from the office.
Congrats on getting it back on the road!!

Where are you in Michigan? I'm over in SE Michigan with my 88 Targa!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Congrats on getting it back on the road!!

Where are you in Michigan? I'm over in SE Michigan with my 88 Targa!
Thank you! I'm in Troy.

Small updates - Got her out for a few more short trips and she's running really well. Next steps will be to get an actual coolant flush in her, change the belts/hoses, then start looking for wheels/tires to replace the 10+ year old rubber.
 

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I like the "barely drivable" sticker.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
After swapping nasty water for clean water a couple more times I finally got some flush through the system. Drove her around with the flush a few times over the course of several days then started tearing into the hoses and belts. And that's where she sits... In passing as I've had 10 minutes here or there I did manage to get new headlights installed and have gotten started on testing some olive green.

Was hoping to take a couple PTO days this week and get more done but being 2021 the kids daycare had a positive case meaning we have two 4 year olds and a 6 yo instead of an empty house.

In more positive news I did finally settle on a choice for wheels. I'd been poking around a few of the online shops looking at RPF1s or some other popular new wheel when someone on one of the FB groups dropped a bomb on me. They're in need of a good rebuild and new powder coat for the centers but who can pass up some period correct 3 pc Work Equip 05 with nearly new tires for $100s less than new 1 pc? They're 17x8 and 17x9. Don't know the offset but they work REALLY well on the MK3. The guy I got them from in TX is building his own '87 Supra for SCCA road racing and they just wouldn't clear his big brake setup.

And bonus, my 6 year old (who has told me REPEATEDLY that she wouldn't be seen in the Supra) has now decided it's ok if I drop her off at school in 'daddy's blue car'.





 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
After a month off to quarantine and heal after catching the ick I finally got back out in the barn on Friday.

To start things off I finally became 'one of those old school idiots on the forum' and used the 'bump the starter' method to remove the crank bolt. My air impact didn't have enough guts and my corded impact was too long to fit with the AC condensor still in place.

I still can't believe I actually did this:


But hey it worked:


Even the pulley came off without any issues:



With the crank pulley out of the way I proceeded to tear off the lower timing cover, clean, and then start on the reassembly. I tried my best to clean and do paint touch up along the way although looking at pics I realize I forgot to do the upper rear timing cover...

Part way through touching up the pulley:


Timing belt/pulley swapped and starting to go back together:


Most of the way back together:


End of the day:


All in all I think I was decently productive. Could have gotten more done if I wasn't taking every other piece over to the wire wheel on the bench grinder but I'm happier knowing it looks better.

Taking another PTO day this week to finish up the hose/belt swap so hopefully I'll have another post before the end of the week. Gotta pull the upper intake manifold to get the heater core hose, drop in the Driftmotion CPS magnet, get the intake piping on, and check TDC before getting her started.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
By some stroke of amazing luck I actually took Wednesday off to button things up. Between previous Supra work and yard work my body did a lot of yelling at me but I buckled down and got it ALMOST to a driving point by the end of the day.

Thankfully Thursday wasn't too taxing work wise so I was able to take almost my full lunch hour and spend a little time after dinner wrapping things up. Not sure the neighbors are happy with how much revving happened while getting coolant to burp but now they'll only have to hear it warm up a bit, drive away, and pull back in after a drive.

Started off by dropping the DM CPS Magnet in and putting some of the turbo intake area back together:


Then I spent 45 minutes on this tiny bastard of a devil hose:


Got the rest of the intake area buttoned up after lunch:


No pics but here in the timeline is where timing was checked as best as possible without it being warmed up. Got her started and ensured the timing wasn't off in space somewhere then shut down to await the stupid coolant funnel to arrive. Also started pouring the coolant in only to find that some retard didn't ensure the drain plug was in place before pouring... Which was fine because it turns out 2 jugs wasn't enough even before losing 1/4 of a jug to the BHG gods.

By Thursday at lunch time the funnel arrived and a trip to the local Meijer (the Walmart of the northern midwest) for more coolant had happened:


Buttoning up for the day also meant putting the hood back on. And yes, I know, it looks HIDeous. The green will eventually take over but right now it's hard to look at with that particular green looking extra nasty next to that shade of blue:


Friday was both my boss' and another tech's last days with the company. Having hired my boss as my underling, showing him the ropes, then him climbing the ranks I felt the only way to have a proper send off was by making the company pay for lunch at a local brewery that we always went to prior to 2020 and arriving in 'that car I keep hearing about but have never seen':


 

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Just tuned in. Great thread, nice writing, and I grew up in Holland, and lived in Farmington Hills for about 5 years, so I'm a Michigander as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just tuned in. Great thread, nice writing, and I grew up in Holland, and lived in Farmington Hills for about 5 years, so I'm a Michigander as well.
My ultimate goal for the summer is to go to Holland in the Supra to take my desktop guy there out to lunch. Made the trip a bunch of times in the Dart and even a couple in my wife鈥檚 van but have always dreamed of taking the Supra.

Taking it to one of our closer offices that鈥檚 not much further than the brewery today.
 

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Looking good, looking good. I see you were able to stretch that silicone over that AFM housing. Good to hear it's running and even impressing the co-workers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I see you were able to stretch that silicone over that AFM housing.
Looking to get 550s/AFR and do the whole upgrade at once so it's the stock AFM for now. That and the Lex AFM you sent was WAY too big for the HPS hose but I'm hopeful that once it's older and stretched a bit I can manage it.

Slight update for the day. Went to drive her to the office this morning and got a nice puddle while she was warming up. After a few minutes of poking in the bay with a flashlight I found that the factory hose clamp and silicone hose did not agree about how tight they needed to be. 30 minutes with some needlenose and a super long screwdriver and I had a craptastic standard screw clamp in place.

After a nice highway run touching 80+ mph and having a bit of back and forth fun with a bike I got parked only to find that the passenger window didn't want to roll up. Thankfully it's an issue I've tackled MORE than a few times on a few old Toyotas and I had the switch apart and cleaned on the spot in 10 minutes flat.

First proper fill up in a while on my way in:


:cry: at least I can get 93 here... (87 is $2.95):


Parked and about ready to head in:


Just ordered the hatch bump stop kit from DM and will have to find someone local with a fender roller. The rears are touching a bit more than I'd like when I hit larger bumps.
 

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Well, I'll be in Holland in mid-June so let me know if that coincides with your Supra trip. And if you're ever there and have a mechanical issue, I know people who may be able to get you moving again. So, on the rears, would you ever consider the plastic cutting board trick of making a 3/8" spacer? I've never used it for that, but I've made speaker spacers, speaker mounts and a crap load of other things with this stuff. You can drill it, it holds a wood screw, easy to shape, etc. Anyhow, people routinely use them in the offroad world to level out trucks and it holds up well with a spring directly against it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well, I'll be in Holland in mid-June so let me know if that coincides with your Supra trip. And if you're ever there and have a mechanical issue, I know people who may be able to get you moving again.
I might have to take you up on that offer some day. Sadly there's no plans for running to Holland in Supra for a couple more months. I was already thinking mid July but now my boss is flying into the Detroit area at the end of July and wants to take a day trip out there. I'm going to try to convince him he wants to take the Supra with us but it will probably be his boring rental. If we do take his car for that I'll probably try to visit Holland again around late September.

Hard to believe it's been 3 whole weeks since my last post. I've been back and forth to both my local offices so many times that I consider the Supra 'road worthy with quirks' at this point. The only major problems I've had were that the coolant gauge quit working on me and the tail light sensor box finally took a poop.

Driftmotion was showing a multi day backlog to get the bump stops and new coolant sender shipped out. Aaron must like other Aarons or something because my order shipped next day. For the failure box I did the rewire (I'm sorry to whoever I blasted in the previous thread about the rewire, I'm an asshat). After the rewire I was still getting no brake lights. Turns out the brake switch went out AND the little rubber stopper was missing... After a trip to O'Reilly for the switch and the local Toyota dealer for the stopper I was back in business.

Coolant temp sender switchout time. Shockingly the wad of paper towel and having the new one back in really really fast did the trick.


That wasn't the real problem though. This craptastical wiring job done by my early 20 something self is the real issue. I sourced a couple proper heat shrink connectors and some properly colored strands of wire from my extra door wiring pile then got to work cleaning it up. A didn't get a pic of the finished product. It's not perfect but looking at the before it's really hard to imagine I could have made it worse... Even found and fixed the wiring for the driver door speaker so I can hear my shitty blown speaker making noises.


So now that the coolant gauge is working again on to the incessant noises from the hatch. Driftmotion's all in one bump stop and bolt kit went in so quickly I totally forgot to take any pictures. Lol. That did the trick on a lot of the rattly type sounds but there were a couple really loud ones still going on.

Pretty sure I found the issue... Couldn't even fit my pinky in there.




I was going to post on the FB groups to see if anyone had a fender roller I could borrow or rent but then I went on Amazon. $50 shipped to the house and it's good enough quality I could probably do 3 or 4 more cars before having any trouble with it.


With me working on the Supra a lot more lately Shadow has decided that he's a shop dog.


Fast forward to putting the 2nd tire back on. It's warm and pretty humid out so I have the AC in the barn on. Picked up the impact, hit the first 2 lugs, go for the 3rd, squeeze the trigger and the lights go out. By this point it's 9:30 at night so there's not even any outside light coming in just total pitch black. Breaker won't reset with the AC plugged in so it might be time to replace it.


Somehow there's still a lot more noise than I'd like but at least the loudest noises are gone. And bonus points for not having to worry about slicing through a tire. I did start looking into the hatch itself yesterday and tightened down the wing bolts. I doubt that was it but hopefully it will help a little.

Not sure what issue I'll tackle next. Probably the brakes since I still have fresh pads and fluid sitting on the shelf. Definitely decided to keep the paint color stock after staring at her more and more. At some point in the near future I'll source the equipment to set up a tiny spray booth and start doing a panel here and there.

I know this thing is on my short list of projects. My FIL has all kinds of stuff in the barn. This was buried under 10+ old Dodge/random brand radios and a pile of scrap metal. With any luck I can find time to scrub it down then clean the barn a little more and get some good use out of it.
 
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