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Thread: Project lockdown - MR2 2ZZ

  1. #1

    Project lockdown - MR2 2ZZ

    I thought I’d share my MR2 2ZZ build as it was suggested it may interest some.

    I was barely through the completion of my Mk2.5 MX-5 build when I decided that, given the way things were going in the sport, that I should build a Mk3 MR2 with a 2ZZ engine conversion.
    Here are a couple of pictures of my Mk2.5. Still things left to optimise to get the best out of it. Ignore the stickers, nothing to do with me.






    So, it all started with a 2002 original Irish MR-2 with the standard Toyota 1ZZ 1.8 engine. The donor car is a JDM 2ZZ Celica. I was starting a construction project before the lockdown a couple of very talented friends said they would take on the task. Once the handover started the lockdown began, leaving me with no construction to do after all. So here we go…





    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 09:04 AM.

  2. #2
    The 2ZZ Celica engine was removed and stripped down.




    I had an engine builder build a head last year, with new camshafts, springs, followers, stainless valves etc.








    Next the fresh head was fitted along with new timing chain kit, head bolts, water/oil pump, plugs, filter etc. All OEM for reliability.








    The gearbox with the ratios and final drive I wanted came from another model of Toyota and required the innards fitted to my old MR2 gearbox housing and a new Plate type LSD setup and installed.
    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 07:34 AM.

  3. #3
    Meanwhile, lots of parts were removed from the car and dipped, sandblasted or wire brushed. They were then ready for powder coating or painting.

















  4. #4
    The rear subframe was sandblasted, reinforced and mountings for a sump guard were added.


    New parts were made up to reinforce the engine mounting.


    Now to a very big part of the build…

  5. #5
    The MR2, even though it was an original Irish car, had a lot of surface rust underneath and a couple of holes revealed themselves after poking about for a bit.































  6. #6
    I researched a lot of rust killing products and bought gallons of each, Hydrochloric acid for stripping metal parts, Deox-C to de-rust rusty parts, POR-15 metal prep etc etc.
    We also realised that the only way to do it properly was using a rotisserie and with lockdown in force, buying one seemed impossible, so one was built.






    At the end of the day it came down to a lot of wire brushing and grinding. I think I spent €250 on wire brushes alone.





    POR-5 Metal Prep acid etch and rust remover was sprayed on and washed off, followed by the application of zinc primer.






    Any very rusty parts were cut out and heavy plate welded in to reinforce structural areas.










    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 07:40 AM.

  7. #7
    Areas that were de-rusted were then painted using a tinted 2 pack epoxy (not colour matched).













  8. #8
    Meanwhile, I removed the engine wiring loom from the car and worked out a plan to make use of an Ecumasters Black ECU I purchased last year. I wanted to do this as a standalone and keep as many of the factory controls as possible. I decided to re-use any obsolete wires in the existing loom to avoid adding any new wires for new sensors and keep it as factory looking as possible. This made the wiring schematic very time consuming and complicated, but worth the effort I think.



    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 07:42 AM.

  9. #9
    I decided that I wanted a very rugged finish in the underside of the car, as the typical undercoating gets abraded in quarries, forests etc. I came across a product called UPOL 2 pack Raptor urethane bed liner, which was noted to be quite tough. I picked up 4 litres of tintable Raptor and a half a litre of colour matched urethane paint made up to tint it. This was sprayed on using a Schultz gun.


















    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 10:55 AM.

  10. #10
    Prior to the application of the tinted Raptor we had decided that we could avoid having all the metal parts plated, given that, during lockdown, there was really no place open for this. I instead bought a few cans of cold galvanising zinc spray that we would use after cleaning using Deox-C. However, after seeing the uniform and lovely underside of the car, we decided that we definitely needed to get everything plated to match the finish. So a box of parts was prepared and a place in NI was found that would plate them.


    Now is when detailing kicked up a gear, in the finessing of parts. All very nice.










    Small fittings were machined up, to allow the fans fit flush to the radiator to enhance cooling.




    A good example of the over the top preparation, is taking a brake cable for instance. All cleaned, the brackets de-rusted using Deox_C, acid and then sprayed with Zinc galv.


    Last edited by piers14; 18-05-2020 at 10:57 AM.

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