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Miata 1.8L --> 411 Wagon


jfbrink

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Well, my solution to my noisy rear end is to throw some more torque at it (no idea why the board is spinning the images):

 

wagon_swap_BP_fitment_1.JPG

 

This is a 1.8L Mazda BP from a 1999-2000 Miata. I choose this narrow model year range because they moved the cam sensor from the rear to the front, which makes the engine much shorter, but they hadn't yet added the immobilizer key and the variable cam setup that a lot of people seem not to like.

 

wagon_swap_BP_fitment_2.JPG

 

This is not going to be crazy like the Misinformation 411. I have the Blue Hands disc brake swap and bigger wheels and tires, but otherwise this will be a sleeper.

 

Jesse.

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Mike,

 

The wiper motor was actually out because I ran out of good wiper post mounts across my three cars. I think I may be able to use the stock setup once I have the engine height finalized.

 

If not, I'll figure something out. I don't consider an engine swap complete until I have working wipers and working heat.

 

Best,

 

Jesse.

 
 
 

 

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Today, I tried the fit again, this time with the transmission attached. Really so much smoother than I expected. It looks like I will be able to simply flip the stock 411 transmission cross member upside down, and it lines right up with the Miata mounting points. This photo shows where the Miata shifter would go right now:

 

wagon_swap_BP_trans_first_fit.jpg

 

The position fits really well to the hand, but it's easy to move the shifter forward up to 5". Which is good, because I will probably need to move engine and trans 2" back from here to give clearance for the steering cross link.

 

I've rolled the car out of the garage so that I can finish another project, so I won't be doing more on the engine layout for a few weeks. But, I will be working on the wire harness and fuel tank in the meantime.

 

Jesse.

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 2 years later...

 

@Datsun Dude - I ended up putting that engine and transmission in my '68 Toyota Corona Coupe, which is now my daily driver:

 

corona_bp_complete_2.jpg

 

But, I have a 1999 1.6L Miata engine (not available in US) with automatic that I am currently installing in the 411 wagon. I have engine and transmission mounts done, fuel tank modified for EFI and new driveshaft made. I've swapped in the 411 A/T column selector from my parts stash and have modified the Miata transmission so that they work well together with a Geo Tracker shift cable. This weekend I am running new brake lines and new fuel lines, and hopefully installing the fuel filter. That will clear the way for doing lots of wiring next week.

 

Because this swap is pretty straight forward, I added a side project of building a custom HVAC setup for it. It uses A/C and heater components from a 1995 Geo Metro (the smallest I could find among JY cars) and a custom airbox to hold the condenser and heater core. It is very compact. The stock switch runs the fan, and the stock levers will control... something.

 

@Pedro - The steering centerlink requires this notch in the Miata oilpan, the same as what I had to do for my Corona. That's the only modification needed. The front crossmember stays the same. I have to modify the transmission tunnel for the A/T, but the manual transmission did not require tunnel mods to fit. You would want to modify the Miata 5 speed shift turret, though, to move the shifter about 4" forward. It's a pretty easy process.

 

corona_bp_engine_oilpan_notch.jpg

 

Here is the modified fuel tank. I added a late 90s Honda EFI fuel pump assembly, modified for the Datsun's deeper tank. I also have a handmade sump tray in the tank. I soldered a 8mm quick connect to the Honda's 6mm return pipe because the Miata lines are all 8mm. I could have installed the Honda pump with just a 2.5" hole and six studs welded to the top of the tank. But, years ago, before I had these tank conversions figured out, I cut a big hole in this tank that I needed to patch with the plate. I will need to make a little cover for the new fuel gauge sender access hole.

 

wagon_b6_fuel_tank_complete.jpgwagon_b6_fuel_tank_installed.jpg

 

 

I'm trying to get this done fairly quickly. I'm moving in October and don't want to have to tow this car! Once I have it running/driving I'll post more details about the process.

 

Jesse.

Edited by jfbrink
Added fuel tank info
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  • 5 weeks later...

 

Here's a brief update with no photos, so not much of an update at all? Since my last post, a guy talking on his cell phone rear ended my Corona Coupe, so it's off the road indefinitely. A real bummer, as I doubt I'll be able to fix it. Two years of searching for the car, two years for my slow build and then two months of driving it. Oh, well. Now my daily driver is a 1960 Studebaker Lark, so I can't complain that much? I just hope I get an acceptable amount from his insurance company.

 

Meanwhile, here's what I've done on the 411 wagon swap:

 

-New fuel supply and return lines

-New brake lines

-Modified 2008 Kia Soul fuse box (holds all the necessary fuses and relays for old and new circuits)

-Oil pan cut and patched

-Custom drive shaft fabricated

-Stock 411 A/T gear selector joined to Miata A/T (via Geo Tracker cable and various custom brackets)

-New rear wire harness

 

At this point, I'm aiming to make it run, drive, stop so that I can move the car. Basically, that means that everything will be done, but the engine/ECU harness will be very messy.

 

Remaining to do before test drive:

 

-Cast custom thermostat housing

-Reinstall oilpan (this is a hassle on the Miata engine)

-Return engine to car (probably with some tunnel clearancing for shifter mechanism)

-Figure out mounting for A/C condenser

-Figure out mounting for radiator

-Plumb radiator

-Temporarily graft coil igniter to engine/ECU harness

-Temporarily graft engine/ECU harness to fusebox

-Bleed brakes

 

Not a terrible list, but I have a lot of other stuff going on, so we'll see how long it takes.

 

Jesse.

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Good  luck and sorry about that Studebaker Lark!  The last Lark I drove was a Bureau of Indian Affairs reject seconded to Minuteman Site Activation,  The engine caught fire on me, fortunately at one of our construction sites that had a fire extinguisher.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hey, gang,

 

Time for another update, this time with photos. Essentially, I have the following tasks remaining before I can drive, at least around the block:

 

-Mount ECU and TCU

-Finish engine harness

-Fabricate rear battery mount

-Fabricate downpipe for O2 sensor

-Mount cooling fans

-Wire front turn signals (and probably headlights, horn and window spritz, since I'll be right there with wire)

-Fill with fluids, bleed brakes

 

Here's an overview shot showing where I'm at as of today:

 

wagon_b6_engine_progress.jpg

 

As we all know, the engine bay in the 411s is super short, front to back, so fitting radiator, condenser and intake tubing was tricky. The key component was the "cobra head" elbow that comes off the manifold. It's from a Kenworth semi truck of all things. At the bottom of the below image you can see the condenser, which is from a Geo Metro, which is the source for most of my A/C components. It's mounted with "headless" bolts I made, which pass through short lengths of vacuum hose so the condenser "floats" somewhat.

 

wagon_b6_engine_intake.jpg

 

The radiator is an aftermarket eBay three-row meant for MK1 and MK2 Volkswagen Golfs. It's turned upside down and hard mounted as shown:

 

wagon_b6_cooling_radiator_mount.jpg

 

A variety of hoses assembled from my hose bag and a trip to the parts store with some bent hanger wire:

 

wagon_b6_cooling_radiator_hoses.jpg

 

The 411 doesn't offer very good paths for EFI fuel lines from the front to the back of the car. I moved the brake line to the left side of the tunnel, along with the fuel return line. I kept the wiring on the right side of the tunnel and added the fuel supply line:

 

wagon_b6_fuel_lines_rear.jpg

 

I was surprised and delighted to discover that the stock A/T gear selection indicator is luminescent:

 

wagon_b6_trans_selector.jpg

 

I like to have hazard lights, which is easy to do in the 411 using a spare headlight switch, spare flasher pot, the unused lighter hole and a heater fan knob painted orange:

 

wagon_b6_electrical_hazards.jpg

 

Here's hoping my next update will include a driving video....

 

Jesse.

 

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Kinda like Johnny Cash's song 'One Piece At a Time', only different. 

 

You possess some interesting 'Git Er Done' capabilities there. Nice work !!

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12 hours ago, jfbrink said:

Hey, gang,

 

Time for another update, this time with photos. Essentially, I have the following tasks remaining before I can drive, at least around the block:

 

-Mount ECU and TCU

-Finish engine harness

-Fabricate rear battery mount

-Fabricate downpipe for O2 sensor

-Mount cooling fans

-Wire front turn signals (and probably headlights, horn and window spritz, since I'll be right there with wire)

-Fill with fluids, bleed brakes

 

Here's an overview shot showing where I'm at as of today:

 

wagon_b6_engine_progress.jpg

 

As we all know, the engine bay in the 411s is super short, front to back, so fitting radiator, condenser and intake tubing was tricky. The key component was the "cobra head" elbow that comes off the manifold. It's from a Kenworth semi truck of all things. At the bottom of the below image you can see the condenser, which is from a Geo Metro, which is the source for most of my A/C components. It's mounted with "headless" bolts I made, which pass through short lengths of vacuum hose so the condenser "floats" somewhat.

 

wagon_b6_engine_intake.jpg

 

The radiator is an aftermarket eBay three-row meant for MK1 and MK2 Volkswagen Golfs. It's turned upside down and hard mounted as shown:

 

wagon_b6_cooling_radiator_mount.jpg

 

A variety of hoses assembled from my hose bag and a trip to the parts store with some bent hanger wire:

 

wagon_b6_cooling_radiator_hoses.jpg

 

The 411 doesn't offer very good paths for EFI fuel lines from the front to the back of the car. I moved the brake line to the left side of the tunnel, along with the fuel return line. I kept the wiring on the right side of the tunnel and added the fuel supply line:

 

wagon_b6_fuel_lines_rear.jpg

 

I was surprised and delighted to discover that the stock A/T gear selection indicator is luminescent:

 

wagon_b6_trans_selector.jpg

 

I like to have hazard lights, which is easy to do in the 411 using a spare headlight switch, spare flasher pot, the unused lighter hole and a heater fan knob painted orange:

 

wagon_b6_electrical_hazards.jpg

 

Here's hoping my next update will include a driving video....

 

Jesse.

 

 

For window spritz, I would recommend a Kangaroo bag on the left front inner fender.  You have apparently no remaining room on the Right firewall.  The Kangaroo bag has its own spray motor, so all you would need to do is to figure out a neat spray hose routing.  These after market Kangaroo bags usually come with an under dash push button which can be use as is or saved for other uses if you still have the twist to activate lights switch.

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  • 4 weeks later...

 

Okay, gang, the wagon runs and drives. I need to take it to the exhaust shop before I can really shake it down. It is very, very loud. But, everything seems to work as it should so far. Once I have exhaust (next week) and have driven around a bit, I will post a video. For now, some wrap-up pics.

 

wagon_b6_3-4_view.jpg

 

Overview of completed engine bay. It's all really packed in there:

 

wagon_b6_overview_complete.jpg

 

Dual line brakes with all new copper lines and the Blue Hands front disk kit. Inexpensive turbo manifold from eBay to save me having to fab a manifold that would clear the steering box. Honda motorcycle coils. An eBay aluminum radiator and fans from Mishimoto:

 

wagon_b6_side_left.jpg

 

On the right side we have a Kia Soul fuse box, a super-compact cobra head intake elbow from a Kenworth semi truck, and a universal throttle cable from Control Cables. I still need to take the harness out once more and wrap everything:

 

wagon_b6_side_right.jpg

 

The ECU, TCU, Deutsch bulkhead connector for the 42 wires and the bulkhead stud for the remote battery. Oh, and some un-patched holes:

 

wagon_b6_computers.jpg

 

The aforementioned remote Miata AGM battery. Just on the far side of the battery is a 200A circuit breaker that I can easily switch through the side access panel without lifting the deck:

 

wagon_b6_battery.jpg

 

That's about it until I make a video. Thanks for looking.

 

Jesse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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