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ajg193's 1983 KP61 Sprint


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I've had this car since June 7th 2013, I haven't particularly done too much work on it in that time.

I bought it with 54,700 original km on it, but there were a few things not too good on it.

Things that needed attention when I got it:


- Top strip of covering on doors was peeling back and shrinking Fixed

- Gearbox was noisy and sometimes crunched into gear Fixed

- Front left guard had been repaired pretty dodgily at some point Replaced with a guard which I took to bare metal and resprayed

- Front bumper is cracked on one side and a bit bent Fixed

- A couple of bumper mounts are a bit crap Fixed

-Speedo/odometer is reading 8% off, ie I am driving 100 but it says 92 Fixed with LSD

- Little dings in random places Some have been fixed

- Small amount of surface rust All fixed, whoever came up with the idea of rustproofing when new is a genius


Things that went wrong on it after some driving:


- Points/condenser went bad, fixed that but they started to go bad again quickly, appeared to be that the bushings in the distributor were wearing out. Replaced the distributor with an electronic type.

- That's about it


Some quick stats from my maintenance log in the car: (OUT OF DATE)

- Spark plugs changed on 6/12/13, NGK BP5ES

- Distributor replaced with electronic version, 15/12/13

- Oil and filter changed, 28/11/13 (~3,000 km since last change), Castrol GTX 20W-50 This oil seems too thick for the car and it takes a few seconds to build pressure when starting cold

- Gear oil changed, 10/10/13, Caltex 80W-90



Fuel (after correction for odometer)

- Average fuel consumption (~ 2 people in car): 7.37 L/100 km

- Fuel consumption on a long trip (with full load): 5.01 L/100 km



Replacing the door trim strips:

Completed: 28/09/13


First step was to find some materials:

- Brown lino of that colour was impossible to find (or at least after a day of driving around asking) so I settled on something a little darker.

- Contact adhesive, I bought 1 L from Mitre 10. Stupid idea buying so much. I left it in the back of my car and it spilled. Good thing I had it inside a cardboard box.

- Paint brush for adhesive.

- Craft knife for cutting the material.

- Pen and straight edge to mark material.

- Solid surface to work on.

- Phillips and flat head screwdrivers.

- Scraper.




The process involved removing the door hande, arm rest, black trim strip and mirror control. There were some clips holding the door card in place. I used the flat head screwdriver to unclip them carefully and then I pulled the strip off the door. The old adhesive and foam was an absolute bastard to remove. It took almost an hour. I then used some screw drivers as wedges about 10 cm down the side of the door card to hold it away at the top. This allowed me to apply the new strips.


After (note the colour changing VW) :


All in all it came out quite nicely and that new brown actually looks good.


Replacing the front left guard:

Completed: 12/1/14


The old guard was pretty crap. Someone hit something with the car at some point and must have completely munted that guard. The one that was on it was not even the original one, it was either off a red car or a blue car or both. The back bottom quarter was a replacement section welded in and the whole thing was covered in bog and was cracking like anything. The trim strip was also put on an angle.


I ordered a guard off of Olds Cool and had it sent up. It had a few dents in it when I got it but it was solid on the whole. I got the hammer and brake pad out to remove the dents and set to work on it. It was covered in old cavity wax on the inside, which was an absolute bugger to get off. I used a flap disk on the grinder to get rid of the paint BAD IDEA it is almost impossible to get a flat surface with the grinder. I ended up spending hours upon hours priming and blocking the panel to get it decent. It has a few little pinholes from rust down at the bottom on the front, but I killed all of the rust and prepped it so they shouldn't cause any future issues. I would have welded the holes if my mig was working.







Working on the new panel: ( I don't have many pictures of this)





It still needs a nice polish





Some random pictures of the car:





Future plans:


- Continue to tidy it up



- Possibly some new nolathane bushes or something all around some day

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The engine doesn't sit perfectly still while idling like some of the other 4Ks I have seen. I was told this is caused by the idle mixture being off, I fiddled around with it and did that lean drop method where I wind it in until the RPM suddenly drops and then back about 1/4 of a turn or so, but it has made no difference to the slightly shaky idle.


Does anyone know what could be causing it? It stayed the same after setting valve clearances a while back aswell so I'm fairly certain that isn't the issue. Could it possibly be caused by a bit of carbon build up in the intake manifold from when the ignition was way off and it backfired a bit?



'>Discussion Thread

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Rebuilt the carburetor today, was a waste of money in my opinion. Made no difference to how the engine runs, the carburetor was basically in good condition already. Here are a couple of random pics from before the new parts. Didn't get any photos of the new stuff.



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So I was going over the bottom of the car with a brush and whatnot to clean off dust and dirt so I could apply new undercoat and water started leaking out from next to a bung in the spare wheel well. FUCK. So I pulled the spare wheel out and found a fairly decent quantity of water in there (I think I had some wet stuff in the boot once and failed to check if it had decided to get into the wheel well or something.... grr)


So I cut up a piece of old welder that was laying around outside and welded it in... Came up pretty average, I haven't used that welder before and it seems that the gas must have been a bit low. But here is a picture



I went on and undersealed bottom of the car and whatnot, bloody expensive thing to do. Went through about 3 L of the stuff.




I was a bit too close to the tank while spraying it so it make some sections where it looked a bit rough. But other than that it came out not too bad.


And on the bright side: The car has no rust now (as far as I am aware).

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  • 2 months later...

I never put any info up about rebuilding the gearbox.

It had noisy bearings, input and output. I pulled the gearbox and then removed 5th gear so that I could get the counter shaft out and the bearings, there is no need to remove anything else from a K50 to get to the bearings. I probably should have done the synchros at the same time but I was on an extremely tight schedule as I pulled the gearbox out only two days before driving from Auckland to Christchurch.


The bearings are nice and quiet now.


I also got a fresh VTNZ WoF today. First try. I will be needing some new rear tyres at some point in the next 6 months though. Anyone know where I can get some good firestone tyres for cheap?

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  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...

So I have decided to start cleaning the seats. I don't really have any true before shots but here are some shots after a preliminary cleaning round. They are starting to come up well but are faded as hell. Does anyone know where I can find some covers for them?




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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Did some work on covering the parcel tray today. It was a mission to find the stuff to cover it with.












Still need to re-cover the mounts. This new colour is probably about as close as I will ever get to the original poo brown colour.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Gave it a service today:


New magnatec 10W-40 (This stuff is legit)

New genuine Toyota filter

New diff oil (It was an absolute bastard to get the plugs out of the diff, the old oil was rooted)


Might do the valve clearances a bit better tomorrow, but they seemed to be all within spec today (a tiny bit on the loose side, but not noisy).


Magnatec seems to do a great job of keeping the inside of the motor good

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  • 2 weeks later...

Did heaps of little things over the last week or so.


New distributor cap


New manifold gasket


some other things



At the start



Random pulling apart




Separated. Make sure to remove the two bolts holding the exhaust bracket to the gearbox. This allows the manifolds to come away from the head.


Old gaskets


New gasket, Toyota part number 17172-13050. $26.71 inc GST.




Removed as much of the old gasket as I could from the manifolds and head.




Need to let it cool down and might have a go at starting it again tonight, just to be certain it fixed the issue of starting on 3 cylinders when cold.


Also need to figure out where the coolant disappeared to between Sunday and now... It went from the high line to the low line on the reservoir.

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Pulled engine apart and replaced the head gasket today.


New head gasket. (Toyota)

Got head skimmed.

New thermostat. (Some repco thing)

New oil. (Magnatec)

New filter. (Toyota)


Probably some other things.




Runs like a champ now. Hopefully it stays good.


Will get the radiator flushed as soon as possible.

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Pictureless update.


Flushed cooling system today. Ran some cooling system flush stuff through and drained the system a couple of times and then filled with coolant and water.



Amazingly small capacity in the cooling system on these, just over 3 L.

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

Drove this up to Auckland yesterday.


Had a great adventure, burger king somehow screwed up my order and gave me three massive burgers for free.


Went through a massive snow storm on the desert road.



Checked my oil this morning and it looks like it has gone down to half on the dip stick :(


Car has never used oil before.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

So I've done another 2500 km since last update, no more oil consumption as of yet.


Did some work on the car:

-replaced rear brake cylinders as one was leaking slowly.

-new front wheel bearings for no real reason in particular other than that the ones in there hadn't been serviced in 31 years/75000 km.

-new thermo fan switch (temp now gets up to half on the gauge before fan kicks in)

-new ignition coil as I was getting radio interference/poor fuel mileage (~8 L/100 km). Now gets about 6.4 on normal driving.


Probably did some other stuff too, did I mention earlier that I got a new windscreen seal fitted? Nope. Oh well, I got one fitted. There was no rust at all hiding behind it. :D





Edit: Oh yeah, as soon as I get a chance on the CNC at work/some aluminium I am going to make up these plates:



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  • 4 weeks later...

Everyone always hassled me about the silver grille/headlight surrounds...


So today I decided to get the silver off and make it look more factory.


1. Turns out I put that paint on quite well so it was quite a bastard to get it off

2. I now remember exactly why I put the paint on. One of the headlight surrounds was covered in chromey stuff and had been painted black to match the factory parts. The black had come off a little in places and it was looking manky.



Anywho here it is now: (I will probably get some dark grey paint and make it look better in the very near future)



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