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My Other Car...

By Bitter, January 10, 2011

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Purple stuff with rain repel. Kept some in a spray bottle to mist off the thin frost on the side windows and flick it off with a water blade.

I got some little 6x9's for the rear deck.

Not bad! Pretty decent sized magnet on a 6x9. I'd expect something like that on a sub.

I finally got one mounted the other day, I had to tweak the trunk torsion springs a little to keep one from sticking itself to the magnet. The hole pattern is a little different so I had to drill new holes, not so fun working in the rear deck area, luckily there's a nice 90 deg air drill and special metal bits that start with no wandering for me to use at work. Those bits sail right through structural and hardened steel like nothing! Amazingly all 4 holes lined right up with the speaker perfectly. Installing the speakers will be the easiest part, it's going to be getting the amp cabling ran and installed that will take the longest. I still don't know where I want to stick the amp, I'd like to leave under the drivers seat free but that may not be an option unless I can mount it in the trunk off to one side somehow so I don't loose any luggage space. That means running power further though, so maybe under the seat will be best. I can mirror the routing of the RCA's and power cabling for the front amp. Why two amps? The power handling of the front and rear is too different. Fronts are about 3 ohm at 100-120W and the rears at 8 ohm at about ??? watts. For the rears I just play with the gain till they sound right, there's no spec on the amp for 8 ohm loads but I figure it's about 1/2 a 4 ohm so in IB I'm going to shoot for about 50-75W RMS which is fine. IB lowers power needs and makes the speakers more sensitive, sort of. I couldn't box them in the rear deck if I wanted anyway, the trunk torsion springs are in the way. I would have to redesign that system.

Nice - yeah, drilling on that rear deck can be a pain without the right tools. How big are those amps? - might be able to mount them under the rear deck. I just picked up some cheap class T amps (Tripath tech) - that are pretty shallow in design. Might try to pull them out of their cases and rework some of the components on the board. Might be able to get them to sit under the rear sail panel area.

Nice! MB Quart Audio makes great stuff - rocking some components myself.

Yea, the only problem is the power ratings listed online are a little...confusing. Some list it was --- W peak and other places list that as the RMS wattage with no peak ratings.

Good news is that my old JL 300/2 V1 just got fixed, does 330W real power, and is on it's way back. I don't have an application for it though since anything I run IB won't need 150W each RMS and due to depth limitations I can't do anything too crazy with the front door speakers that would need that kind of power.

Great video with amazing car.

Ok so I decided to just use the JL with the 2 Tang Band in parallel for a 4 ohm load on the JL bridged. Those 6x9's sounded terrible at first. Now after about 4 hours play time they're sounding very good. I ended up flattening my EQ a little more (less bass) and set the fronts high pass to through instead of 40 or 60hz. The filters in the head unit are way too sharp, so when it says 40hz high pass it means it cuts SHARP at 40hz and NOTHING below 40hz plays at all. I'd like more of a soft filter around 50hz on the fronts but whatever. I can probably do that later with a little passive circuit if it's bothering me too much or get a nicer amp for the fronts.

So on to the rears. Wow. Amazing bass. So many rattles and vibrations to fix now. The car sounds so full bodied and nice, honestly I think better than the Celica except the staging isn't as good since the tweets are down in the doors on the Mazda because coax speakers. I did good. I am happy. I dislike the car much less now, just having good sounds makes my day so much better.

Nice! I've wondered about the Tang Band speakers after seeing them on Parts Express. Good to hear that they sounds pretty good to you - might be something I should look into down the road. Commute really sucks, if the tunes don't sound very good - especially if you spend a good amount of day just commuting back and forth to work.

I fixed about 80% of the rattles and buzzes pretty quickly, I'll go through and do a good job later when the weather stays nicer. It's good enough for now.

Now I'm ordering up some 205/50-16 Conti DWS for some 16x7 04 Mazda 6 wheels I got to fit the 03-05 Mazda 6 front brakes that are going on it. The rotors are MUCH thicker and about 20-25% bigger around, the pads are about 30% larger, the caliper bore is slightly larger but the forums say no problems with it. Once the fronts are done, wheels/tires are on it'll be road trip ready if I want to drive anywhere and not eat up the sticky summer tires on the Celica. I have all the parts except for the rear brake adjusters to rebuild the rear drum brakes. I've decided that the rear disc swap is going to be too much time and trouble no matter how much I'd love to have rear disc. If I didn't need to change the whole knuckle with bolts that are about 10 inches long that run through multiple bushings I'd consider it. Or if the car wasn't from the salt belt I'd consider it. I just don't think they'll come loose without a ton of fighting so I'll rebuild the drum brakes with new hardware, springs, shoes, wheel cylinders, and adjusters and see how it is. I think it'll be fine.

I do need to pull and clean up one drum to paint black, one that I had painted was defect (warped bad for no reason) so I had to get a quick replacement and no time to paint it. With wheels on I'd like a nice black brake drum back there. Eventually. Asthetics can wait, I can do that at home on some weekend.

Sounds like that Mazda is coming around nicely.

Yeah, I'm waiting for good weather and some free time to play around with cars. trying to get my son involved in some simple wrenching around the car, as it will eventually be his. That leaves me with filling that spot with a potential summer / good weather car / possible auto-x project car.

It is. I'll be happy when I can just drive it. I need to do an alternator and axle, but first rebuild the rear brakes. Once the weather stays nice I'll leave it at the shop, take the train home, walk from the train (3 miles, no sweat), and just drive the Celica till I'm done. I can do one side then the other over a couple lunches or something during a week. The shoes, hardware, and wheel cylinders are original, the adjusters have stopped working and the brakes are far out of adjustment. I need to track down some brake adjusters.

Cool. Yeah, got to love that salt belt. Let the car sit for any amount of time and everything gets corrosion frozen in a heartbeat.

And the wheels, tires, and front brakes are installed! Much better, I can drive and use the brakes and nothing shakes. I need to drive gently for a while until I get the rear brakes done but these larger fronts make a marked difference, much much less pedal effort to stop the car more easily. Bigger pads, bigger thicker rotors, and bigger caliper bores are simply able to turn my motion into heat more effectively. A 2800lb curb weight sedan should not have brakes the same size as a 2500lb curb weight small car, they were the same size as my 93 CloneRolla! Utterly unacceptable (to me) and I blame Ford's influence for that. So here's how she looks like a little iOS magic wand photo editing.

Ended up swapping some Raybestos EHT pads on it, they seem good for daily driver pads.

Just got my tap-turn in the mail and set it up for 3 blink tap turn signaling, normal hazards when the ignition is on, and 3 flash strobe hazard when the key is off. I can do wig-wag and some other stuff too. It's pretty cool! I spent way too much but I can ditch the resistors for the turn signals at least and know I can run my hazard lights for a long time on battery power if I'm ever in a bad situation. The JDM Astar LED bulbs installed are bright as heck too, probably too bright if there's such a thing. My turn signal is probably visible a mile away on a clear night.

Sweet! Sounds like the Mazda is coming only nicely.

Yeah, it is tough to not spend money on cars, especially when you get to see tangible improvements. If they happen to look good aesthetically - that's just icing on the cake.

I think I need some wheel spacers, aesthetically speaking. The offset of the Mazda6 wheels really tucks them in under the fenders, in there rear there's about 1/4 inch gap between a suspension bolt and the rim.

Interesting, never noticed that on Mazdas - maybe it was just the style at that generation.

Totally agree though, I always liked the look of wheels almost flush with the body, makes it look less "pigeon toed". But not the extreme poke that some people run or crazy negative camber to tuck the top of the wheel in to avoid the fender.

Going to make those yourself or just buy a set commercially?

I'll buy some eventually maybe, not sure. I think I'd need extended wheel studs though and that might mean pulling the front hubs, if that's the case I won't bother at all.

I got tired of fellatiating a flashlight to check fluids and you know they say anything worth doing is worth over doing right?

I decided I wanted a light under the hood because that's nice to have for like checking fluids and stuff right? So I bought a used OEM Ford underhood light like what comes on a Crown Vic which has a little 921 bulb on it. It puts a little light on the engine but it's pretty dim and yellow and I can't see to much like the hole to put the dipstick back into or the coolant in the radiator. I tried a few of the various LED's I have on hand, some are better, some are worse, one was the least worst and got better with some aluminum tape behind it to bounce more light to the engine area...but I still can't see the damn hole where the dipstick goes!


So I bought a $3.00 shipped pair of cold white COB LED's that run at 12V OK enough to use right off the battery, but they get hot and really benefit from a little heat sinking, so I got some 1/2 by 3/4 by 1/16th thick aluminum angle and stuck that up to stick the LED to for heat sink and to help shield it from the elements some, I'll also pot the edges and solder points with some nice glue. I'll bond the LED to the aluminum with some thermal epoxy and stick it to the hood with some kind of mounting tape.

But I think I may have over did it. This is just everything stuck up with some HVAC putty to hold it to check it out....


It's all potted now, used some Arctic thermal epoxy to bond the COB to the 1/2x3/4x1/16th L stock, turned it so the 1/2 edge is forward and it'll just clear everything when the hood is dropped and also shield it from direct spray. I used some E6000 glue as potting to seal around it's edges and the solder joints and bare wire and also to glue the cord into the inside corner of the L stock so it can't get yanked on and damaged. Potting has had 24+ hours to cure so it's all set, I grabbed a spare fuse holder from work (scrap from an alarm uninstall), and now I can't find my darn red/black paired wire anywhere! Either it's lost or I used it all. Not sure how I'm going to power it, might see if I can tap something off under the fuse block or maybe even add an actual fuse for it cause that would be pretty cool! Maybe get a tiny switch (I think I have some from alarm removals) and mount it on the side of the fuse block so I can disable it when needed.




That is something that I definitely want to try to setup on my vehicles. Just got this pesky "job" thing that keeps getting in the way. LOL

I ended up buying a different switch than the OEM's I had bought and I'll mount it to the hood hinge so all my stuff is inline and looks nice and neat.

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