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Bugeye RX
Dave Bergheimer

(47 posts)

Registered:
05/16/2010 07:04PM

Main British Car:


Dave Berg's 1959 AH Sprite 1987 Mazda RX-7 13B Rotary
Posted by: Bugeye RX
Date: June 20, 2010 08:41PM

Owner: Dave B
City: CT
Car Model: 1959 AH Sprite
Engine: 1987 Mazda RX-7 13B Rotary


Engine: 1987 Mazda RX-7 13B Rotary

Cooling: Griffin 3" thick Drag Radiator, Perma Cool Puller E-fan, Mazda RX-7 Oil Cooler

Exhaust: Homemade 2" Header heat wrapped and ceramic coated

Transmission: 1987 Mazda RX-7 5 speed

Rear Axle: Stock Housing with competition diff and half-shafts, with dual hub bearings.

Front Susp.: 1965 Midget A-arms, spindles, hubs, with 1275 springs

Rear Susp.: Stock

Brakes:
(master) 1965 Midget
(front) 1965 Midget discs and calipers
(rear) Stock

Wheels/Tires: Stock

Body Mods: Convertible

Interior: Custom

Electrical: American Wiring

Home Coming. Fall of 2007.









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I first attacked the Body

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I then went in search of a Motor and found a 1987 Mazda Rotary

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Next during the winter I stripped and polish and built motor and tranny

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Spring 2008 finally came and it was now time to fit this set-up together!


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First I attached the tranny!

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Next Came the Motor!

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Once I had found all the hits I had to perform the following structural modifications!

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Once I got the proper clearances I had to add a horizontal stiffener and make a under pan motor mount pad and Tranny mount!

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Once all that was done I clean up the engine compartment and populated the engine.

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Next I had to make a 24" drive shaft. I used a RX-7 drive shaft for tranny interface and it turns out a Ford ranger diff flange and U joint worked great for the rear-end interface.

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With the Drive train complete I turned my attention to the dreaded Electrical! Yuck!

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I took a break from the electrical and worked on some interior stuff, replacement tunnel, pedals, dash etc.

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Back to the electrical, this time lights.

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With the Electrical done it was time to tackle the cooling, then I could fire it up!!!!!!!!!

First was the oil cooler pretty straight forward!

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Next was the radiator, what a nightmare this was.

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Next was the Hoses and E-fan!

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NOW IT WAS TIME TO START! Here's a video of the first start-up!!!!!!!!!!

Now that it starts, it was time to roll it out and have a look see !

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The above 70 something photo's represent 2-1/2 years of work and bring you update to date on this project. Currently I'm working on a disc brake upgrade, front sway bar mod and complete brake system rebuild!

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I finally got the new springs. I went with the taller 1275 springs since the upper fender well had rub marks already and them 984 springs might not like the heavier 5 speed tranny, front suspension, and big rad filled with water. I hope it's not to stiff!

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Well I got the springs in and man IT WAS NOT EASY!

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I installed the sway bar assembly today and this completes the front end conversion!!! Happy 4th!!!!!!

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Got away from the front for awhile. I located gauge in cock pit and installed the exhaust system!

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Well now it's on to the read brakes. I'm just going to do a rebuild on the stockers until I complete a future rear-end swap-out.

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Side one Done!
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All brakes and lines are is. Not much more to do as you can see on my white board.
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Finally got all the brake lines bleed. Had some issues with the hydraulic clutch, seems the AH master cylinder and the Mazda slave cylinder were not match properly. I need to use a larger Mazda pick-up slave cylinder to get the proper pedal stroke. Also had some binding in the front end. I assembled the new front end with the car on the jack stands. I had to drop it down and loose all the bolts and re-tighten with car on the ground. All is good now. I should be able to take it down the driveway this weekend! I'll add a video link this weekend if all goes well! Wish me luck!

Well it worked out, I took it up and down the drive under it's own power:


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Well after much debate I've decided on a color and finish. I'm going with a light blue and a matted finish. I'm also going to add a black rally sprite to match the top and tie in the black under the hood and cockpit. I should have it done in a few weeks and will post some pictures when it's done. That pretty much leaves the interior last on my list. I'll decide what to do with it once it's painted and I can get a feel for the best color combo!

First road test Video!

Finally the first road test. After some issues I finally got it to run good. The thing scary fast and rev's to the moon. I had a sticky apex seal or two and could not get it to rev over 3500 without it stumbling and bogging. I removed the plugs and work each seal back and forth with an unsharpened pencil while spraying the seal directly with carb cleaner. Once I did this to all seals I then work them again with my pencil and this time sprayed each seal with marvel oil and let them sit over night. The next morning I tried to start it and nothing!!! I removed the plugs and they were found with all the junk I sprayed in there. I cleaned them up and BAM fired right up. and sounded good. I can now move on to paint. I like to thank John for all his help. He was able to trouble shoot a car 1,000 miles away and walk me through a pretty frustrating time. Bravo dude!
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Well I melted the 20 gauge piping I used for the header. I now will build a new one from .125 thk wall and see what happens. I bought this batch of stuff on E-bay.
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What a winter, I just got around to checking on the car, all is well and my first priority is paint!

All legal now and just waiting on some more $$$$$$$ to get her painted!
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Got some paint and working on interior!
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I finally snapped an axle, time to install the Winner circle axles.
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Finally going into the paint booth. I decided on a 30% flat racing blues from Hot Rod flatz. Will post once I'm done.


Finally it's all painted!!!!!!!!!!
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Edited 46 time(s). Last edit at 06/24/2014 09:51PM by Bugeye RX.


Moderator
Curtis Jacobson
Portland Oregon
(4411 posts)

Registered:
10/12/2007 02:16AM

Main British Car:
71 MGBGT, Buick 215

authors avatar
Re: Dave Berg's 1959 AH Sprite 1987 Mazda RX-7 13B Rotary
Posted by: Moderator
Date: April 21, 2015 02:13AM

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