Rebuilding the Big Red – 2015

After Clifford was completed, running well and proven it is capable of doing many laps of the track without losing all its oil and with the JZS171 Crown being a perfect daily drive. It was time to turn my focus to a very deprived Big Red.
(The MZ11)

Many moons ago, i really loved driving Big Red daily, to work with Holly… to mates houses… to car shows etc.

Since then, the combination of flying to the desert for work every second week and the WA POLICE taking a tougher than ever approach to modified vehicles meant Big Red sat around garaged, laying dormant.

The Kill Rust paint i used to apply two very very heavy coats had faded since 2010.
Along with faded paint, i found a few sections of rust that had come back in the rear and around the rear quarter windows.
This meant I had 100% left Big Red too long without any love.

Boy did it look glorious back then!

This was the last picture i took before getting to work. With the Enkei HR 385’s and Delicious Red paint.
Still with S13 Lower control arms, 1982? Nissan Bluebird tierods and S13 Tein Coilovers / Hub / Knuckles.

Into the new “car port” at the home that Holly and I now own. Time to remove the rusted sections for good. Time to not use fibreglass and bog to cover everything as i did in the past.

Cutting into the boot was like ripping off a band-aid. It was something that i hoped i’d never have to do… however, to save bigred from being scrap in a few more years… it was time..
Large sections of metal pictured below were removed from the lip and rear quaters.
After i had completed the cutting, I felt good. I imagined Matt Capp would say “its the right thing to do” 
I asked my neighbour Bozz who runs a towing service and wrecking yard (BozzAutos) to grab me a random bonnet from his yard for new metal to cut and bend up and place in the gaps i’d cut earlier. This took a long time to measure and get correct. I always took the easy route by using fibreglass in the past so this was a different experience. However when getting it right it feels good! haha.

I continued doing a few small welds to keep them in place , after the pics below I ground them all back and make sure they were sealed and seated the best i could get them.

Again with the help of my neighbour Bozz we threw some bog (bondo) onto the sections needing repair. Its going to need more than this to look good !


During December, Holly Loch Morgan and I went to New Zealand for Xmas time. Such a beautiful place, So much adveture!
Was a much needed break from life and the life i lead in the Desert for work. Big thankyou to John and Sue for looking after us while we were over there ! 🙂


Many weeks later, i continued working towards making the two rear quaters as perfect as i could. Here is what around 2 weeks on and off work looks like. I think its pretty good for my first “more pro” repair… Cleaned up all areas, and applied two coats of isolator along with high build primer.


I then got to work on the sanding portion of this big adventure. The part i really was NOT looking forward to. After 4 years of long hot summers and the KillRust paint baking into the car, i knew it was going to be a mission to remove.
I purchased 20 x 80 Grit and 20 x 140 Grit sanding pads for my Orbital sander. I went through every single one and then some. It was extremely tiring and hard, i think i spent a total of 65 – 70 hours sanding.
Was it worth painting in RustKill ? I guess so, if you dont have much money, you have some sort of control when spraypainting and you have somewhere to do it.



Sometimes during my quiet and lonely evenings in the desert at work, when Facebook sux and so does TV , I like to search “Gumtree” which is Australias free forsale listings (Similar to “Craigslist” in the USA)
One evening i found a GZ10. Painted Purple with a big OST sticker on the rear window.
This was a car owned by a member of one of the first car clubs i had ever had the fun of joining and crusing around with back when i had an RA65 Celica.
The car was way worse for wear 10 years later. Rust everywhere and the paint had come off multiple parts. However it DID have Kouki bumpers, doors, perfect window chrome trim and side mouldings. It also had a really nice and clean interior and a 1G-GE which had been serviced with what looks to be a new head. I contacted the lady owner who used to work at the racetrack we drift at she was happy to sell. I picked it up for a good price and Bozz helped me drag it home with his trailer.

I removed the bumpers, doors and the side mouldings to install on the MZ11. To my suprise, everything matched up just fine. This time, sanding them was a breeze as it appeared to be only Acrylic paint on these parts! haha.
I love the look of the Kouki bumpers and side mouldings. The doors were a huge score, as mine contained a fair amount of rust at the top and inside the base of the doors. The new (purple) doors are pefectly clean. A simple loom swap from GZ10 to MZ11 inside the door is all that was needed before bolting them up (Thanks Morgan for helping!)
I feel im getting closer to paint now which is very exciting!!! Im wanting to do a white and red two tone. Classic style, but reversed.



Along this journey of rebuilding i also picked up a nice set of SSR – Formula Mesh in 14×8.5j -10 and 14x9j -12 and a new front chinsupo!  from Yahoo Auctions !
(Thanks Jesse !!)

Also, to finally remove the binding S13 setup ive had for so long, BC Coilovers for MX73!!

More to come…..

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