Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Little Details

Since it seems shipping AC hoses is hard (or at least it's hard to find a competent seller), finishing up the engine bay work where really only thing left is the AC is going to have to wait for another week. In the meantime we focused on starting the buttoning down process and getting to the little details that take up lots of time but are important to this build.

Reupholstered AP2 door panels and Recaro Pole Position - 2/25/2018
First up, I finally got my AP2 door panels and center cushions for my Recaro Pole Positions back from the upholstery shop. I think they did a really good job. On the door panel they didn't just lay the cloth over the leather. Instead, it was completely stripped and new foam added. Same was true for the seat cushions. They were all redone to give it a new firm feel. The cloth I chose for those that don't recognize it is Recaro Tomcat yellow and black. It's definitely not for everyone but the color scheme is a throwback to the JDM interiors of the late 90s. It's actually a shade or two lighter than the car color but I see the interior as a different "zone" from the exterior and the color matches well with the black and yellow Schroth Racing 6-pt Clubman harnesses.

Schroth Racing Clubman 6-pt harnesses - 2/25/2018
We only test fit the door panels and seats. We'll probably leave the seats and panels out until after the body shop paints the car so they don't mess up the new cloth. The reason for going AP2 door panel is because the AP2 panels give you a bit more elbow room and a more functional little "pocket" to put little things. I took the opportunity to add some strips of sound deadening inside the door while I was swapping panels. What a difference it makes! The door now gives a solid thud when you close it.

Test fit driver side door panel - 2/25/2018
The thing I was most excited about today though was SJF completing one of the modified OEM seat rails. I bought a pair of used OEM seat rails and he drilled out the stock mounts and bolted on straight side mounts. This is a perfect fit for Recaro Pole Positions and the seat sits nice and low while retaining the full smooth gliding range of motion of stock seats. This is probably my most favorite mod of the build so far. Frankly all S2000 seat rail solutions for Recaro Pole Positions suck and this gives you the best of everything. You'll notice some missing bolts in the photos. SJF completed the mock up today but we had to order a bunch of new Grade8 bolts to complete both driver and passenger sides.

Test fit modified OEM rails to Recaro Pole Position - 2/25/2018
Passenger side modified OEM seat rail mounted - 2/25/2018
On the interior, we also added a pair of 2.1A USB ports to the back of the glove box so I can run power to a GoPro or anything else that might sit in the rear of the car without having a bunch of wires coming out from the arm rest.

USB ports added to rear of glove box - 2/25/2018
I also got rid of the soft top switch since I don't have a soft top and replaced it with the OEM soft top delete plate from a CR. All the interior panels for the trunk was also reinstalled although I guess I need to buy a ton of clips to replace broken/missing ones.

CR Soft Top Delete plate installed - 2/25/2018
The other major job for the day was to get the Downforce wide oem-style front fenders installed. Although the driver side holes didn't line up perfect. After some adjusting of the headlight and a little slotting of the mounting holes, both sides went in great and fitment was pretty damn good for an aftermarket fiberglass piece. We only temporarily put the front bumper on with no fasteners so pictures below don't accurate depict bumper fitment but I wanted to see how the car would look once all the panels are fully installed. I think it's going to look really good once it's painted.

Downforce +30mm OEM style front fenders installed 2/25/2018
Downforce +30mm OEM style front fenders installed - 2/25/2018
Checking overall fitment - 2/25/2018
Finally, I got some new stainless black oxide bolts and washers for the rear overfender as my old bolts had started to show some signs of rust. Just noting the sizes here for future reference.

New fasteners for rear overfenders - 2/25/2018

Saturday, February 17, 2018

She's Alive!

The top priority for this week was to get Bumblestook running on the stock ECU. The whole purpose of this build is to make her street legal again and everything done so far is pointless if she can't run on the stock stuff to pass inspection. Sure enough here she is today idling on the stock ECU with no check engine lights.

Running on stock ECU with no CEL - SJF Performance - 2/17/2018
I don't think I've ever been happier seeing a "stock"-ish S2000 running but this was not an easy task for SJF. For her previous ITB setup, a lot had to be modified to make it work and lots of wires were either cut or soldered to make things work reliably. This meant that once SJF had removed the ITBs, there was still a lot of electrical work needed to bring her back to life. Thankfully I anticipated this and had bought a spare engine harness so he took the needed plugs from there and soldered and heat shrink wrapped everything. I was missing an OEM knock sensor that I had to get overnighted from California and Bumblestook's original 40K miles OEM injectors were re-installed. We also went back to the stock fuel setup to avoid any complications later.

Back to stock manifold and throttle body - 2/17/2018
She fired up right away this morning when we tried for the first time but we did have to sort out some emissions stuff in order to get her fully running without throwing any codes. She's finally alive and this is an important milestone in this project because she's now truly free from her storage prison.

AP2 bumper installed with plates on - 2/17/2018
During the week I had her insured as a street car and got her registered with the DMV. The plates are temporary as her custom plates are coming soon but she's now legal for street driving. We installed the AP2 rear bumper to replace the cut up AP1 bumper she used to have. I think the AP2 bumper looks the best for a dual exit exhaust.

LHT Performance brake master cylinder brace - 2/17/2018
Other things we took care of today was installing the brake master cylinder brace for more consistent brake performance at the track under heavy load. Her 5 year old wiper blades had to go but I wanted to find something OEM Honda to replace it. Rather than getting the 16" and 18" OEM wiper blades, I opted for a pair of 19" wiper blades from a 2011 Honda Accord Coupe which actually look pretty nice for OEM wipers. For reference the part number is 76630-TE0-A01.

2011 Honda Accord Wipers - 2/17/2018
2011 Honda Accord Wipers - 2/17/2018
She retains her AP2 engine but as a bit of a nod to her AP1 roots, I went back to an AP1 black spark plug cover. Her Shine Auto replica ASM rear overfenders were replaced with a set of authentic ASM rear overfenders. The holes didn't exactly line up with the replica so some adjustments were needed but that should work out quite well once painted.

AP1 spark plug cover - 2/17/2018

ASM rear overfenders - 2/17/2018
ASM rear overfenders - 2/17/2018
Lastly Jenna worked on adding a few more strips of sound deadening in the trunk and removed the remaining sticker residue from all her old decals. I installed LED bulbs from js2k for the reverse light and turn signals.

A bit more sound deadening in the trunk - 2/17/2018
We're still not quite at the finish line though. The AC still needs to be completed, we have to figure out how to route the brake ducts and there's some additional work on the interior that needs to get done. Here's a little teaser of what I'm excited about next though. I got an extra set of OEM seat rails and if this works, then I'll finally have seat rails for my Recaro Pole Positions I can truly be happy with. I really wanted Mugen seat rails but sadly they only work with the narrower Recaro SPG seats.

OEM seat rails getting hacked up - 2/17/2018
We got done just as the winter storm rolled in. She might be a bit of an eye sore right now with all the multicolored panels but it's really great seeing her come together like this.

Done for the day - SJF Performance - 2/17/2018

Sunday, February 11, 2018

ICE, Interior, Oil Cooler, CMC and Spoon Brakes

It's been an incredibly productive weekend and significant progress has been made since the last installment but let's start off with this picture because Bumblestook is starting to look like a complete car again.

CR Tonneau trimmed and reinstalled - 2/10/2018
SJF Performance
But let's rewind a bit to where we left off last time. The brakes are now finally done. The rear brakes were done in the last post but the fronts are now done too. The Spoon Sports monoblock calipers are in along with the APR Performance carbon fiber brake rotor ducts, new OEM rotors and pads.

Spoon Calipers, APR Performance CF brake rotor ducts - 2/1/2018
The brake ducts are very nice but did require a fair amount of trimming to clear the Spoon calipers. The hole for the rotor duct is 2.75" but the brake ducts I have on my bumper are only 2" as are my brake duct hoses so I got these silicone high temp reinforced reducer couple hoses to try and match them up. Not sure yet how these will eventually work out since there are some clearance issues but we'll worry about that later.

HPS HTSR-200-275-BLK reducer coupler - 2/10/2018
And of course because these came up for sale on the S2000 boards and I figured might as well install new lines, a set of Spoon Sports front and rear stainless braided lines got installed too and the entire system was flushed with fresh ATE fluid.

Spoon Sports brake lines
The oil cooler kit from Sakebomb Garage was also installed. This is a Setrab 19 row cooler, Mocal sandwich plate with 200F thermostat and upgraded Nylon braded lines. It's definitely a nice kit but we're going to add some line separators to tidy things up some more. We also got rid of the "Extreme Race" Hasport 105A motor mounts in favor of the less aggressive Innovative 75A motor mounts which are perfect for track use while still being ok for the street.

Setrab 19 row oil cooler - 2/10/2018
Setrab oil cooler with Nylon braided lines - 2/10/2018
Mocal sandwich plate and
Billet Innovative 75A motor mounts - 2/10/2018
Next we got rid of the nasty old clutch master cyliner. It wasn't leaking like the one on Lupa but given that it had seen better days and the car is now going to be 16 years old, I figured why not replace it with a fresh one.

Old CMC - 2/11/2018
Brand new CMC - 2/11/2018
Now onto the interior. To bring the "GT" to an otherwise track prepped car, I wanted most of the interior back and to quiet down some of the cabin noises. First step was to trim the CR Tonneau cover to fit the Harddog Double Diagonal rollbar. Suprisingly we didn't have to trim much but cutting up an otherwise hard to find discontinued piece is sure to raise a few eyebrows for S2000 purists.

Marking up the CR Tonneau cover for cutting - 2/10/2018
Once we had made sure the cover cleared the bar, SJF had to fabricate some aluminum spacers since part of the stock roll hoops the cover would normally rest on is no longer there.

CR Tonneau cover bolted down on spacers - 2/10/2018
After remembering how generally loud the car gets with a gutted interior, I decided this time around I wanted a more refined sound. I picked up some Noico sound deadening that my friend Kamil had recommended, put some strips in the area under the tonneau cover, under the seats and by the transmission tunnel.

Noico black 80 mil car sound deadening - 2/11/2018
Sound deadning applied to rear - 2/11/2018
Sound deadening applied under carpet of seats - 2/11/2018
To further clean up the rear and to make it too obvious that the rear panels are missing, I got some black speaker box carpet and layered that over the sound deadening.

Carpet to hide the sound deadening installed - 2/11/2018
The end result is a pretty clean looking interior for "gutted" track ready car.

Rear interior with panels trimmed and carpet installed - 2/11/2018
With a seat, it almost looks stock-ish - 2/11/2018
*seat borrowed from Lupa
CR tonneau cover reinstalled -2/11/2018
As much as I love just hearing the sound of the engine when driving, for longer drives it's nice to be able to listen to music or be able to safely make a phone call via bluetooth. To address this, I had to reinstall a stereo in the car. Since I had removed both the radio and the speakers, I decided a good compromise is a nice head unit, an inline amp and some upgraded component speakers. From past experience, I went with an Alpine headunit (UTE-62BT), a simple 4-channel Alpine KTP-445A inline amp and modifry DCI to maintain dash controls. To refresh the look, I also replaced the radio door cover with the black/yellow CR radio door.

Alpine Head Unit installed - 2/10/2018
Small Alpine amp - 2/10/2018
CR Radio Door - 2/10/2018
For speakers, I was going to go with the Alpine TypeS unit that I have in Lupa but after some research it seems that the Polk Audio DB6502 speaker setup would be a better fit and give reasonably good sound quality. The speakers fit nicely in the stock speaker location and aren't too deep that they get in the way of the window when you roll them down. I also used and highly recommend the Metra 72-7800 speaker connector harnesses so you can simply plug the speakers into the stock connector without having to cut the stock wiring.

Polk speaker crossover installed inside door - 2/10/2018
Polk woofer installed in door - 2/10/2018
Blurry Polk Tweeter photo - 2/10/2018
Tweeter reinstalled in door panel with modified bracket - 2/10/2018
As far as other interior creature comforts, I installed a Modifry phone mount with Baseus magnetic car mount and Modifry cup holder (if you own an S2000 you know why you want one). I also finally got to put on the ZOOM Engineering Monaco 240 carbon fiber rear view mirror.

Modifry phone mouth with Baseus magnetic car mount - 2/10/2018
Modifry cup holder LOL - 2/10/2018
ZOOM Engineering Monaco 240 CF rear view mirror - 2/10/2018
ZOOM Engineering Monaco 240 CF rear view mirror - 2/10/2018
Other miscellaneous things we finished was reinstalling all the eyebolts for the 6-pt harnesses, test fitting the Ichiba AC-50620 20mm hubcentric rear wheel spacers and installing an AP2 horn. Note to self, you have to actually bolt the horn in to test it or you won't have ground and it won't make any noise haha.

20mm hub centric rear spacers - 2/11/2018
AP2 horn because it's louder - 2/11/2018
The AC condenser and compressor are also finally in after the backordered compressor brackets arrived and I finally got my hands on the correct lines needed. The next major step is to remove the ITBs and put back the stock fuel system and OEM ECU and we'll be on the final stretch. It's been a month since the build started and it's been already been quite a journey. We should have Bumblestook street legal and drivable by the end of the month and then it's onto the body shop to make her looking pretty again.