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Mk1 Mazda MX5 (aka Mindy!)

This is the latest addition to our modern classic family! A Mk1 Mazda MX5 1.6 (UK car). I've wanted one of these since the day they were launched back in 1989. Was at the Car show in Glasgow seeing all the new cars, when they pulled the cover off to reveal this gorgeous little red sports car. Was love at first sight, and said there an then I have to have one of these one day! Only taken me nigh on 30 years to realize that dream, but I was a skint teenager back then (now I'm a skint oldie! lol).
As I've been down lately, Gayle my Mrs suggested I needed a new project to help pick me up. She also loves the mx5's, so initial plan was to get a total rust bucket without mot and do a full restoration. After looking at prospective cars, realized that the £1000 budget really did just buy cars that were totally gone. So we upped the budget and came up with plan B! This plan was to buy a decent enough car to start with that just needed TLC, so we spent ages viewing lots of cars that appeared decent but once we arrived to view found they too needed too much work rust wise. Finally found this one which was in Stirling.
So, she's a 1997 UK car (so one of the last mk1's) with 90K on the clock, came with almost a years mot and the chap selling really didn't want to sell her! As everyone knows, all MX5's rot in the rear inner/outer sills and the rear arches. Mindy still has her original arches, but has had the very lower outer sills replaced on both sides. Not the prettiest repair, but look to be a very solid one. Underneath she's solid, and the previous owner has spent a fair bit on her with the welding and also replacing both rear brake calipers. There wasn't a service book which was disappointing, but there are receipts and old MOT's so some history of what she's had done.
Faults we noticed that needed dealing with first were the hood. It was completely shot, and had temp gaffa tape repairs. There was also a really bad vibration when at 65-70mph. These repairs are detailed in later posts.
So here she is the day we arrived home!

We'd literally just arrived home 5 mins before, and I thought I'd get a couple of pics but as I did, Gayle and my step daughter promptly jumped in and off they went for a wee run!! lol
My plan is to restore her to as close to new as I can get, along with some subtle mods. So planning the following:
Replace all suspension including shocks/springs, all wishbones etc then laser 4 wheel alignment Stainless steel exhaust Replace hood fully strip underneath and apply new underseal plus having chassis wax injected. New brakes Rear sills to be replaced by BorderMX5 so done professionally and will be undetactable once done Full respray (in either the original classic red or possibly the new Mazda "Soul red" metallic red.) Custom leather Interior retrim including replacing the seats with tombstone ones New wheels and tyres (Cades Enos with a bit of dish) Fully detailed engine bay Follow her progress in "Members Cars" in the forum.
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Showing content with the highest reputation on 12/26/2018 in all areas

  1. 2 points
    Mmm...Not sure about that if you refer to Mx5 ones. TBH, owning 2 for 15 years as we do, never had issues with rear discs...but there is a reason in my opinion & experience. In our cars, frankly rear discs are superfluous. Quality drums would be fine...but would look krap and "unsporting" They do little braking effort work (about 20/25%) and don't like being ignored. I've always clicked the handbrake up when safe & in the dry every other week to get them shiny & toasty like the fronts, and lubed the sliders etc. People in the OC Club have scoffed at this theory. They are usually the ones who suffer jammed calipers & rusty inner discs, whereas my Mk1 rears are fine at 146,00 miles, and I only had to renew our 2002 Sport's last year at 98,000 miles. And that is in a car whose rear discs....are bigger than the fronts! It was a tip I picked up years back from a guy ( engineer) in the Monza OC.
  2. 1 point
    I must be on the sixth set of rear calipers on my aerodeck! Still on the original front ones though. ??
  3. 1 point
    Happy Christmas y'all! How come rear calipers are such a rubbish design?!?
  4. 0 points
    Where did you get that photo of me and Gayle lol. ? Have a great Christmas and New year folks! I'll be spending mine replacing the rear calipers on the mini as they went last night (again!) Bummer!
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