The S13 Build Continues…

So after much pressure and with a Santa Pod “Drift What You Brung” day rapidly approaching I gave in and bought myself a variety of adjustable arms for the rear of my S13. Having slammed the car not long back the adverse effect this had had on my geometry was very apparent after checking my rear tyres; they were being shredded to death right on the inside of their contact patch, yet the rest of the tyre was barely scathed. It was time to get the rear end setup correctly…

I chose to keep things simple and avoid any adjustable lower arms. Instead I just went for a set of adjustable camber, toe and traction arms from Japspeed; the necessities to dial in the correct geometry.

Thankfully we were able to undertake the job in the shelter of Jonny’s garage as the terrible weather outside marked the end of what had already been a rubbish summer (weather-wise). After making sure all of the arms were in order it was time to crack on and we made a start on tearing the original arms off.

After a couple of hours we had the old arms off and the new arms on. Obviously the whole lot needed setting up and, as this would be impossible for us to do correctly in a driveway with none of the correct tools, we set the lengths of the arms as close to the OEM items as possible. We then dialled out a bit of camber, as was originally intended.

Unfortunately this resulted in the rear tyres sitting far too close to the rear arches, so a quick arch rolling session with a jack handle was needed to cure the problem for the time being.

It didn’t take long for me to realise that the alignment needed sorting urgently, so after speaking to Gaz at Direct Tyre & Exhaust in Stockport (where many of my cars have been in the past) I took the car down to see if we could actually get it up their ramp and onto the alignment machine.

After a bit of pushing and shoving (and a fair bit of scraping!) Gaz got to work with the alignment, dialling in a much more suitable setup for the rear end in order to maximise traction and reduce the ridiculously uneven tyre wear I was suffering from.

Next up, it was time to address the very broken turbo. With Santa Pod’s DWYB just a few days away I managed to source a T25G unit (an upgrade compared to my T25) and without hesitation we set about fitting it.

The turbo didn’t come with an actuator, something I was told by a number of sources wouldn’t be an issue as a T25 one should work fine. Of course, this ended up being another case of  “never trust what you read on forums” and neither a T25 or T28 actuator would fit without serious modifications. Obviously, we only realised this after removing the manifold, turbo, downpipe…etc.

After a late night brainstorming session we decided that, rather than risk modifying an actuator that might not even operate at the correct boost pressure, we should just stick the old T25 back on and pray that it would survive the 300 mile round trip to Santa Pod with a lot of skids thrown in for good measure! At this point I have to thank my mate Saule who, on the day before we headed to ‘Pod, spent all afternoon putting everything back together again by himself while I was stuck in work. As soon as I got back we carried on long into the night and I finally made it to bed at 230am, my alarm went off shortly afterwards at 5am and off I went to meet the others and start the journey down South.

As you can tell from my previous post though is that the car actually survived and got me home without any major issues! In hindsight though, it’s probably time to sort the engine out properly…

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