Sorry guys, it's been a while since I posted but that doesn't mean stuff hasn't been getting done. I left off my last post with the transmission getting rebuilt which turned out great. But before I reinstalled the engine I took the liberty to knock out a few other items that were much easier with the engine out.
First was to dive back into the never ending saga of the steering system. I had the steering working but I had very little clearance between the steering shaft and the exhaust manifold. So little that I actually had to keep the steering wheel tilt at one position to avoid hitting. I knew there had to be a better way unfortunately the best solution I came up with involved cutting a hole in the frame in the engine bay to allow for clearance of the steering knuckle.
I didn't get any pictures of the hole without the pocket or the sheet metal pocket that I bent from some .090 steel sheet. But I did get one of the welded in pocket before painting.
They weren't the prettiest welds in the world but it wasn't anything that a grinder couldn't clean up. Here's a shot of the pocket with primer, it was the best picture to see the shape of the cutout and the pocket.
I threw a few coats of off-white paint on and you would have thought that it came from the factory like that.
And finally one with the steering shaft installed.
Here is one last picture that shows the different in clearance to the manifold area. I also now have full adjustability of the steering wheel tilt.
Hopefully this is the last that I will ever have to post about the steering system. I really hope that my trials and tribulations make it a lot easier on the next guy. Earlier in the project someone had asked if I was nervous about the modified clutch pedal being only bolted together. I wasn't overly concerned but I decided that in the down time I would have it welded together.
Last but not least I decided to finally tackle the A/C system. I took the compressor side of the F-body hoses and the condenser and expansion valve side of the Lexus hoses along with some templates to a local hose shop and they brazed/spliced them together. The best part is that they only charged me $40 for the whole deal. I pulled a favor with a buddy of mine who got me charged up for free and viola, ice cold A/C. Due to the complex electronics of the Lexus A/C system I currently have a separate switch for the compressor clutch magnetic coil but I'll fix that eventually. Here's a picture of the low pressure hose which eventually was secured to the radiator fan shroud.
The engine was installed back into the car for probably the 5th time and I finally was able to install my MGW shifter. This thing is like a piece of art and has amazing mechanics. I would definitely recommend their products to anyone in their application range.
I was almost ready to head to the Showdown in O-town meet to mingle with some fellow Lexus enthusiasts but first I had to get my car sitting properly. I don't have any pictures of the install but the BC coilovers went in very easily. About 3 hours for the entire process and thanks to SargeISF they were set up perfectly so I didn't have to make any adjustments. Here a shot just after the install.
Thanks also to ccdan who took some great pictures of my car in Orlando. Here are a few of his shots.
After the meet weekend I decided to dive into the dash modifications, yes, I still don't have a dash in my car. I have done a lot of work so I think I am going to break my dashboard restoration into another thread. Here's the link:
IS250 Dashboard/Door Panel Restoration with Custom Gauge Pod
And here is a teaser on the current state of the project
LAST BIG NEWS OF THE POST
Car is at the tuner right now. He worked on some drivability tweaking today and he'll do performance tuning on the dyno tomorrow. Which also means that either tomorrow night or Friday night I should have dyno numbers and videos. Stay Tuned.