Build Update

Sorry, I couldn’t think of a title today. Let’s take a look at where things stand this week so far…

I’ll start with a couple pieces I found on eBay that aren’t remotely essential to getting the car running, but they’re pretty cool. It’s good to step back sometimes from the grand scheme of things and the stress of putting a build together like this to do something that is easy to accomplish and looks neat when you’re done. The first is a Toyota Aristo JZS161 front grille:

These seem to be a little tricky to find, so I snagged this clean example. Most people seem to prefer aftermarket grilles with no badges, but I love the OEM JDM version- this car just looks at home with Toyota badges on it. Here it is installed on my chipped up hood:

I also bought a set of Aristo scuff plates for the interior. These replace the USDM units that say “LEXUS” on them. Just another cool little detail to have:

The driver’s side seat belt was missing from the interior I purchased, so that showed up this week too:

I got a hold of a pair of A and C pillars for the interior swap, but I did not have the B pillars. The headliner was proving to be a major pain for the seller to ship, so I decided just to paint all of these items black with DupliColor interior and fabric paint. I have used this stuff in the past when converting to a black interior on some of my other cars and it works well enough to get the job done. The best option would have been to wrap all of this stuff in black fabric, but I don’t have the budget or patience for it at the moment. My car won’t have much of a “VIP” feel to it anyway, so this is sufficient in my eyes.

Here’s a shot of one of the dirty tan B pillar covers prior to being painted:

And here are the pillar covers after being painted:

After starting on spraying the headliner, I can honestly say I kind of wish I had wrapped it! It’s proving to be very time consuming and using a lot of paint. I think another coat tonight will take care of it though. Then I just need to spray the sunroof cover and I’ll be ready to start getting a lot of this back into the car’s interior.

For the actual plastic items that need to be painted, including the steering column cover and kick panels near the carpet, I turned to my good friend and interior expert Toby for something a bit nicer than the DupliColor stuff. He hooked me up with some SEM paint that should work nicely for those pieces:

Like I mentioned before, I wasn’t really feeling the wood grain trim on the door panels and center console. I took it to the body shop and had them spray it gloss black for me. I’m really happy with how it turned out- looks much better! Again, not really going for a VIP feel so this is perfect.

I got three of the door panels back in, but I’m waiting for the black window switches to arrive for the driver’s door before I can put that one back in.

I’m expecting the rest of the interior pieces I need to arrive next week, including a set of black leather seats. They aren’t in amazing condition, but I wanted to at least have something in the car so I have one less thing to worry about. I’d of course love to be bolting in a pair of buckets instead, but that will have to wait for another day.

As for the mechanical side, I brought the cherry picker up out of the basement and was able to get the engine off of the pallet. My engine stand is currently out at my cousin’s house, so I picked up another one to use in the mean time. The bell housing bolts aren’t long enough to put the engine on the stand, so I’ll grab some today after work and get the engine on there. That will free up garage space and make it easier to do some maintenance work before the engine goes in.

I also removed the torque converter and flex plate from the engine. Won’t be needing those anymore!

Finally, my order arrived from Drift Motion including a lot of the things I need to convert the car to a manual transmission. JZA80 Supra clutch and brake pedal assemblies, ARP flywheel bolts, bell housing to transmission and bell housing to engine bolt sets, JZA80 clutch master cylinder, braided clutch line, R154 slave cylinder, JZA80 throttle cable, Marlin Crawler bushings for the shifter, and a polyurethane transmission mount.

I’m going to try to install the clutch pedal and master cylinder this weekend. That will allow me to really start getting the interior back into the car. My next step will be to decide how much work I am going to put into the engine and order the necessary parts to get that all sorted out, as well as the fuel pump and other stuff needed to convert the car to a return style fuel system.

Should be a long but rewarding process. Thanks for reading!


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4 Responses to Build Update

  1. boorito says:

    You look to be moving very quickly with your project, and I am one excited to see your progress! Your build is going to make me really want another Cressida lol

    • haha, Cressidas are awesome! Moving quick for now, but when the new baby arrives in two weeks I’m sure the car will be neglected! Hopefully not too bad though…

      • boorito says:

        Ahh completely understandable! A big congratulations on that though, as I would assume it is more exciting than a project car lol.

  2. franklin says:

    You Rule. And Congratulations!!

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