El Wifeo's Mirage Rally car (aka Mirage Rally Car, Take2).



  • its the look.... just as much as the sound.... it wont seam fast unless you can easily fist the exhaust

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Nothing has rattled off (yet!). Had a bit of a fiddle with the wheel alignment, which has made her happier.

    Doing 68.lows on the few laps that I have timed it on. Wallows around like a rally car does, and the front brake pads catch fire after 7 or 8 laps.

    Most of all, it is a ball to drive.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited December 2020

    Progress on my one.

    1.5 is out.

    Removed the welded on brackets for the battery tray and charcoal canister. This was about making room, rather than weight saving or anything.

    /\ This photo also shows the green control arms have been installed.

    Dragged the 2.4 out of hibernation and stripped the accessories off.

    I have an uneasy feeling that I didn’t keep the power steering pump, and I can’t find the alternator to suit the motor. Not going to panic until I have a proper look tomorrow.

    The Mirage/1.5 has the alternator on the rear of the motor and the PS pump on the front - the Lancer/2.4 is the opposite way around, so not really viable to re-use the original Mirage bits.

    Totally blathering on engine management again. Lots of people run the 1.8 ECU with a retune, but like 99% of tuning factory ECUs, it seems very hit-and-miss whether people actually get them working... and there’s a few hundred dollars in the cables and software.

    I have an ancient Microtech Digi2 that I can make work, but the cost of tuning is significant, and it doesn’t really make sense to put $500~1000 worth of tune into an unsupported, 20yo, $50 ECU.

    Kind of thinking that ~$1000 worth of new, base spec Microtech is not a terrible solution, but I know that my preferred tuner will abuse me long and hard for this choice and probably refuse to tune it... which means finding an alternative tuner and all the ball-ache that goes with it.

    Aiming to get the 2.4 in place and dummied up tomorrow, so I can get my head clear on what has to happen with the RH engine mount.

    Not sure what to do with the fuel rail. The 2.4 has a returnless rail, that needs to be converted to have a pressure regulator and return line. I am a bit worried that the rail isn’t just an empty pipe inside, considering the weird shape.

  • For the fuel rail you can run the pressure feed of the car to a tee piece which goes to the regulator and return of the car. The tee then feeds the 2.4 rail. No need to flow fuel down the rail and out a regulator etc.

    For an ECU I would strongly suggest getting something your tame tuner likes. Secondhand haltec's and even wolf 3d usually work quite well for a few hundred dollars and tuners don't run screaming like they do with microtech (with good cause).


  • @spac

    Maybe its just time to buy a low end motec or haltech and consider it as a 10 year investment that can just move to whatever car you are racing on any day

    Any new car just requires a new harness and that's it

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited January 1

    It is in.

    I lifted the motor into the engine bay and lowered it to the ground, then attached the gearbox and lifted it back up - pretty sure that you can’t drop the motor & box in from the top.

    The RH engine mount needs to be something better than a tyre lever...

    I actually looks like it will be easy to make the mount though - just cutting down the 2.4 gearbox mount and original 2.4 engine mount and welding them together. Maybe.

    Ended up using:

    All three 1.5 gearbox mounts and brackets and longitudinal member. The lower gearbox brackets are the same between the two gearboxes, but the 2.4 top gearbox mount pushes the box too far rearward. Of course I discovered this the hard way.

    The 2.4 gearbox and half shafts. There’s lots written about using a 2.4 “bellhousing” on a 1.8 box, but I can’t see why you’d bother. The 2.4 box has a shorter diff ratio and equal length driveshafts which are better for me anyhow.

    1.5 shifter, shift cables and bracket. Bolts straight onto the 2.4 box.

    1.5 clutch slave, hose and steel line. All bolts straight up to the 2.4 box.

    This was all a dummy fit, but I am seeing less and less reasons why it can’t stay in there now. Most likely reason is alternator and/or power steering pump mounting.

    I have ordered a new timing belt - should have done so weeks ago, so I could fit it before the motor went into the car.

    Quad throttle bodies are on hold. Going to be a lot of work/extra time and I would prefer to have the car running.

    Seriously considering a power steering delete. The Lancer hatch was fine without PS, and the old S40 was actually faster without it. I am not ready to commit because I have a suspicion that the car will end up with a locked diff and everyone who’s done it seems to say that FWD lockers are awesome but hard to hold onto without PS.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited January 1

    Found the alternator, can’t find the 2.4 PS pump.

    PS delete is going ahead for now, but I will keep what I have so it can he re-installed in the future.

    Ordered a new CH Lancer radiator, in the hope that it fits into the Mirage.

  • You could go with a cabin mounted electric unit (Volvo P1 style) so you can adjust the effort as you race and also on a per driver basis

    Can also switch it on and off as needed/desired

  • Mirage has gotta be small and light enough to run with the astra electric PS

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Only the pump can be changed for Improved Production. Astra pumps are commonly used, but I don’t want the hassle.

    I’ll wait until a CH Lancer wreck comes up on Marketplace and buy the pump.

  • Anything Prohibiting you from moving a stock pump into the cabin and driving it using a 12v dc motor and a belt?

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Only common sense.


    Swapped bonnets with the kids’ car...

    Fitted up the front brakes.

    Seems like a useful upgrade...

    Evo Bilsteins with very rough-and-ready coilover conversion. 😁

    Seriously, I had been avoiding committing to buying coilover sleeves but I convinced myself today. This is good enough for a dummy run, and will let me put the car back on its wheels before the sleeves arrive.

    Next problem is that the CH Lancer tierod ends come in from the bottom, CE come in from the top.

    I see two realistic solutions:

    1. Ream these holes with a tapered reamer from the top, creating an hourglass shaped hole. I have 99% convinced myself that this will work fine. Worse case is the I make up a double tapered spacer to fit in the bottom half of the hole, but that’s some fiddly, tedious machining that does not enthuse me.
    2. Try to find another tierod end that can come from the bottom. Some of the old Mazda bits were the right general shape, but I have no idea about the details. Plus a lot of the old Mazda parts are getting hard to obtain.
  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Rear disc brake conversion mostly done. Forgot to take photos.

    S40 rear hubs, 1mm sheet metal spacer/shim on the stub axle, and it bolts on.

    Don’t have spare handbrake cables, so will see how it goes without a handbrake. I have always kept a working handbrake in my other race cars, because it makes life simple.

    Plenty of other people leave them out, will see if I can cope or not.

    Remote battery isolator control. Actually pulled from the #2 BMW rally car - needed one hole enlarged and bolted straight in.

    Doesn’t connect up to anything yet...

    No doubt that the S40 T4 BBS wheels look better than the same size S40 SuperTouring wheels, but I have 8 of the SuperT wheels (thanks Ballast!) so...

    Actually, the long term plan is to run 15s on the Mirage, but I got a set of five Yokohama AO48s cheaply, so 16s it is (for now).

    Getting f$&ked around on the 14mm camber pins from an idiot ebay seller.

    That will do for today.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Not much work on it today. Finished fitting the rear brakes and bleed them all, a few little tidy-ups around the place.

    Mostly spent the day cleaning up the shed - it still looks like a shit tip, but now I have some idea where the shit is...

    Tomorrow will be prepping El Wifeo’s rally car for the next round of the Summer Series. Basically just fitting some better brake pads and an oil change. And probably some stiffer rear springs.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited January 3

    Little bit done this morning before the rain set in...

    The bumper support had to be straightened to allow the bumper skin to sit properly. Such a pissweak part: 0.7mm sheet steel folded into a 25x25 U-section, so it hardly takes any effort to bend it.

    Fortunately this also means that it takes very little effort to straighten it...

    Bend up the battery bracket but it too rainy to actually fit it.

    Driver’s seat mounting is hurting my brain a bit. God awful mounting points make the normally straightforward task much more complicated - three mounts are fine, but the inner rear mount is up on the ‘transmission’ tunnel and the tunnel is abnormally wide at that point to make room for the catalytic converter.

    I haven’t conceded defeat yet, but am thinking that I can’t do this one without welding.

    Changing the forks to eyes on the bottom of the Bilsteins is a job for tomorrow.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited January 3

    Things that can be done in the rain!

    I have a love-hate relationship with cutting out numbers. On one hand, it is a tedious job that I should just spend the $100 and have done professionally... but on the other hand, it is a bit of a milestone that I am on the way to having something new to drive.

    The downside here is that it is beginning to look like a proper race car. I had been hoping that it would give the impression of being a road car with some numbers whacked on, like you see at hillclimbs and super sprints.

    Turns out that when you put the proper CAMS-spec stickers on, it instantly looks a lot more like a race car.

    Can’t do the windscreen banner yet because I don’t have any black vinyl.

    Main things left to do:

    Wiring and ECU and tune.

    Seat & harness mounts.

    Rollcage (The Sydney Covid outbreak is going to make this more of a hassle).

    Exhaust including extractors.

    Tie rod stuff (have been doing some reading on this - am pretty certain that my half depth taper idea will be fine).

    Finish battery mount + fire extinguisher.

    Gearbox and engine oils.

    Rear shocks.

    Wheel alignment.

    Bonnet pins.

    Front coilover conversion.

    Front camber pins.

    Decent brake pads.

    Radiator and hoses, including the redundant heater hose ports.

    Mechanical throttle body & air filter. Foreseeing some 3” PVC pipe here.

    EGR block-off plate.

    Oil catch can & radiator overflow tank.


    Optional/longer term:

    Handbrake cables.

    Power steering.

    LSD or locker.

  • Ex850RSnoopy @Ex850R Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Melbourne.

    It does look good.

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    EGR block off plate. Bit rough because it was the material I had.

    Unfinished accelerator cable bracket. Can’t finish it until I have a throttle body and know what I am aiming for.

    Despite a lack of enthusiasm for it, I got into the electrical side of things.

    Here’s the raw blanking plates.

    And then populated with indicator, and light switches. They need labels but L-to-R: parker lights, headlights lo/off/high, indicators.

    Most of the important switches, and all the fuses and relays will live on a panel on left of the transmission tunnel.

    This is to keep the weight low and back, shorten the wiring run, and keep it out of the way of damage.

    Early days...

    And where I stopped:

    Everything is in easy reach and should be identifiable to a gloved hand without looking.

    Crusty, corroded fuse box is for set up only. I will replace it with a new one (hoping that Jaycar still sell these!).

    I relented and fitted a switch for the ECU. Basically the battery isolator is “accessories” and the toggle switch is “on”.

    The gauge is the fuel gauge. Seemed like a good idea to have it down there, but now I am thinking about some longer races, and being able to see it while you’re strapped in would be good.

    Also have no clue if it will read anything vaguely useful off the Mirage sender.

    Pretty happy with the way the isolator cable works. There’s a bicycle brake cable holder screwed into one of the factory holes in the floor - it gets tight when it is pointing in the correct direction, and is very close to the correct height.

    I’m tired and my head hurts.

    Pretty convinced that I will use the new Motec M4 that’s been hanging around for years. My tame tuner won’t touch it, but hopefully the dyno owner is willing to - will call tomorrow to find out.

  • TzantushkaTrent @Tzantushka E. suburbs - Melbourne

    Solid progress...

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    Shock mods.

    Hard part was working out how to align the two parts for welding - holding a circular eye in two planes is beyond my skillset.

    Like most solutions, it was quite easy in the end:

    I even double checked with another similar jig on top, and it was less than 0.5mm out (probably more like 0.25mm).

    I didn’t let the gas out before welding. It was a calculated risk, with laziness and impatience being my primary decision makers, and I don’t recommend that anyone else does this. The risk of being sprayed with molten steel driven by 200psi of nitrogen is probably best avoided...

    I basically just did a bunch of tack welds, trying to avoid putting too much heat into the shock. The Bilstein stickers were my “carnaries in the mine” - if they began to look blistered or burnt then I let the shock cool before welding again.

    This strategy seems to have worked, but combined with my crappy welding skills, I now have some very ugly welds...

    I usually wear my screw ups and imperfections, but I am not willing to put up photos of these welds until they have had a date with the linisher. Yes, they’re really ugly!

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