Once you go black.... (Condor's Cursed PZ)

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MightyCondor
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Once you go black.... (Condor's Cursed PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

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Ever since getting back into RX-8 ownership with the purchase of my panic buy shed RX-8, I have fancied the idea of getting a great condition, lower mileage, ideally special edition car, which I could take a bit more pride in. Don’t get me wrong, the last car was brilliant, and having got the track day bug with it, I probably had more fun in that car than any of my previous rotaries.

However I finally decided that I was ready, and when this PZ hit eBay, I knew I had to go for it. Fortunately I managed to win it, which is unusual given that I’m generally pretty conservative in my bidding. This did put me in the slightly ridiculous position of committing to buy 2 RX-8s in the space of 2 days, but that’s another story….

I went to collect and was immediately impressed by the condition of the car. The body work was good. The previous owner, threw me the keys and after a satisfying test drive, business was swiftly concluded and I got the joy of a 3 hour rush hour commute around the M25 getting acquainted with what felt like a pretty special car.

I found an expired (hopefully redeemed) £5 RX-8 OC voucher in the folder for the car, and one of the keys was attached to a RX-8 OC keyring. After a brief forum search, I discovered a previous thread for the car covering 2016-18. Although many of the prior mods from this period were reversed, I can thank WhelanUK for investing in and taking great care of the car. Also shout out to Nick (13Black) who did a lot of prior work and produces very informative invoices. I can see that he’s personally addressed every imaginable service item with this car, albeit 7,000 miles ago.

The back story of the good condition of the body, is down to WhelanUK having some arch rust fixed at a body shop and then treating the car to Krown rust proofing treatment. There was still a smidge of the 3 year warranty left when I took ownership.

Other surviving features include:
- Decent compression results as tested by Luke Murdoch 10 days before I bought the car
- D969 coils
- Supporting minimap from 13Black
- Filled engine mounts
- Sohn tank
- Toyo exhaust
- Dimpled and grooved disks, with some decent pads
- Rotary dial on stereo
- Piano black ashtray
- Full led interior lights
- Alloy passenger footrest
- Some random ditch finder tyres!

The car almost wanted for nothing, but I had other ideas and still had a load of parts to move over. Having bought it, I SORNED it until I could fit the following:
- Cusco anti-roll bars (which i re-painted red first)
- Meister-R coil overs
- Refurbished front and rear calipers with braided hoses lines
- Racing Beat back box and dual res
- Axial Short Shifter
- Oil temp and pressure gauges
- Nexus satnav conversion
- Xcarlink stereo adaptor
- My other set of PZ wheels with RainSports on them
- AEM induction.
- Led taillights
- Halo headlights
- Greddy front and rear strut braces
- Full 40th Anniversary interior (Thanks to BigPete for the referral on that - was a bargain)
- Nardi steering wheel
- 20mm wheel spacers
- Wire brushing and applying vactan to any surface corrosion that I found (thankfully not very much)

Not all of this work went as smoothly as I would have hoped. One brake pipe fitting wouldn’t release, and I came back to it later having acquired a blow torch and some vice grips.

I also discovered that the drivers door actuator only worked intermittently, which didn’t improve much after some lubrication. Big thanks to NickP47 for gifting me one from a breaker car.

It's been a big lockdown project and overall the largest amount of work that I've personally ever done on a car, and I'm slightly surprised that I've managed to do it without any professional help.

With the car finally on the road, I have taken it to FW Motorsport for an alignment, which has made the front end turn it very sharp. It’ll be interesting to see how my first track day in the car goes.

So with all of that done upfront, this may well turn out to be an uneventful project thread [2022 Alan laughs as this comment].

Better do posts of me enjoying the car instead.

I still have a few parts to fit, whenever I can be bothered:

- Aero half skirts - still waiting....
- Illuminated gear knob - done
- Braided oil hoses form the recent Group Buy - not needed as turns out theyve already been done

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Last edited by MightyCondor on Thu Apr 04, 2024 7:24 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by casey »

Looks like a good 'un Alan :thumleft:
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

Certainly good, but having been through the car to the extent that I have over the last 4 months, I've discovered a few things that I'll have to sort out in the chase for perfection. A project car is never finished afterall!



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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by v-rex »

Nice. The paintwork looks great on that car. Nice deep black.
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MightyCondor (Fri Aug 07, 2020 1:12 pm)
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

v-rex wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 6:55 am
Nice. The paintwork looks great on that car. Nice deep black.
I tried some Turtlwax Jet Black spray polish on it and the results were great. Unfortunately being a black car, it gets dirty very quickly. Cars never stay clean at my house anyway - mostly pollen I think.

The black is very deep. I have a set of aero half skirts that I was going to fit, but the PZ black spray paint that I used was a terrible match :(
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by 30405 »

Looking lovely! Cant wait to see it at Mallory.
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Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by GreySilver Beast »

Looking forward to seeing the car in due course :thumleft:
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by BigPete »

Looking spot on Alan :)
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MightyCondor (Fri Aug 07, 2020 8:56 pm)
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by Conan »

I can’t believe you changed the PZ suspension :roll:
You should have tried it first before making the car slower ;)
Car looks good though :thumleft:

Curious, was that Cusco strut braces or roll bars ?
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by ChrisHolmes »

In order to preserve the finish on the Meisters and keep Adjusting collars free spray them with this https://xcp-protection.com/products/xcp-rust-blocker/ it penetrates and dries to leave a light waxy film which can easily be removed with brake cleaner etc when you want to have bright clean units for shows.
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MightyCondor (Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:54 pm)
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

Conan wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:16 pm
I can’t believe you changed the PZ suspension :roll:
You should have tried it first before making the car slower ;)
Car looks good though :thumleft:

Curious, was that Cusco strut braces or roll bars ?
Pete
I could have predicted that from you Pete :lol: :thumleft:
I bought the Meister's while I had my old car but didn't fit them before selling. Yes if the timing had been different, I would have just bought a set of group buy PZ shocks, and to be honest I'm still not ruling it out if I can get my hands on a set, but I'll see how I get on at Pembrey and Mallory before passing judgement on my current setup.

Cusco anti-roll bars which I've carried over form my old Silver car and Greddy Strut braces across the front and rear shock towers
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

Image

First track day completed in the PZ last weekend – a soaking day at Pembrey

On the drive there I had the coilovers set to full soft and the car felt a bit darty and wallowy just changing lanes on the motorway, so I won’t be doing that again. For the track day I adjusted them, and the car handled great. Also another successful test for the Rain Sports. I only managed to properly unstick them on the hairpin, and admittedly I was only really driving fast enough to properly test them in the final hour of the day.

In that final hour I noticed the temperature gauge moving, which is worrying given that it was only a mild wet day. I’m going to have issues at Mallory if the weather is better unless I do something about that, but haven’t got much time to do anything before then. I’ve been running torque ever since and notice that the car seems to drive around 90 degrees under normal conditions but can rise pretty rapidly under load.

The rear clips on my undertray have fallen out, so hopefully reattaching that will help the air flow through the radiator rather than under it.

I’ll also have a go at blowing some compressed air through the radiator in case it’s partially blocked with crud, as I remember that doing so had a positive effect on my second RX-8.

Hopefully it’s not an airlock or thermostat issue!

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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by warpc0il »

Even having the rubber strips missing around the radiator can have a significant impact on cooling efficiency, so you're lucky it was so cool and wet that you got away with having the undertray loose.
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

warpc0il wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 1:04 pm
Even having the rubber strips missing around the radiator can have a significant impact on cooling efficiency, so you're lucky it was so cool and wet that you got away with having the undertray loose.
Thanks for the reply Dave. It gives me confidence that refixing it should hopefully be enough and that I won't have to resort to a coolant change or removing the PZ grilles in search of marginal gains.

I did try to reattach it on my driveway before the day, but it seems to be out of alignment, so I'll need to get the car in the air and have a proper go
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by CNWilson »

Great PZ! Keep us posted with progress.
My PZ (Black Betty) needs a bit of tlc to the underside and body.
Great track toy though!
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by brix79 »

The 8 does look good on a track. 8)

Very nice buy Alan. :thumleft:
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

Car passed its MOT this week. Also took advantage of the ramp and had the undertray refitted. Having looked in through the front, I still think there's too much space for air to go underneath.

Difficult to photo but am I missing anything?
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by BigPete »

The bit of foam that’s goes between the rad and undertray
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by warpc0il »

Armaflex makes a good replacement.

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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

bigpete wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 12:51 pm
The bit of foam that’s goes between the rad and undertray
You wouldn't happen to have one in stock would you Pete?
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by MightyCondor »

warpc0il wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 12:57 pm
Armaflex makes a good replacement.
What dimensions would you recommend?
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by 30405 »

MightyCondor wrote:
warpc0il wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 12:57 pm
Armaflex makes a good replacement.
What dimensions would you recommend?
Watching intently as I need it too.
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by BigPete »

MightyCondor wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 5:35 pm
bigpete wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 12:51 pm
The bit of foam that’s goes between the rad and undertray
You wouldn't happen to have one in stock would you Pete?
no most of the time its hanging off, you want some approx 20mmx 40mm and the length of the rad with adhesive on
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by BigPete »

Not so easy to find tho, so 40mm thick is what your looking for.
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Re: Once you go black.... (Condor's PZ)

Post by ChrisHolmes »

Armaflex, AKA central heating pipe insulation available at a merchant or DIY store near you!
Rotary History;

Sep 2005-Aug 2006 EO55 XOL VR 231 New
Oct 2014-Mar 2019 OE06 EWJ VR 231
Jan 2019-Jun 2020 T200 CAD Orange SC 231
Feb 2020-May 2023 RR54 AJR VR 231 Modified for Track
Oct 2020-Mar 2021 YA56 EUE Copper Red Nemesis
Jun 2022-Apr 2023 TN07 JHD KURO Resurrected
Jun 2023-Jan2024 OV09 BFF Sparkling Black
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