Sunday, April 19, 2020

Fixing the Interior - Taking Some Things Back to OEM

So with R33 parts rapidly becoming unavailable new from Nissan (and many parts still not available under the Heritage Program), I figured that, whatever course of action I take to fix the interior, I should at least stock up on a few parts I will need to at minimum bring the interior back to OEM status.

Everything that Cesar did in terms of the leather work (with some exceptions) will stay - that work is simply too beautiful from a quality and tactile (and smell) standpoint to switch back - but items that in my opinion detract from the utility of the interior, as well as drive-ability, will be taken back to OEM, or OEM+, levels.  For me, the 2-DIN Navi/stereo doesn't work (too complicated, and the HVAC control relocation I don't like) and the A-pillars need to be replaced (the Morel speakers in the A-pillars are ugly and I don't think they sound that good) despite my attempt to recolor the suede to a proper color.  

As of this writing, my NISMO contacts have informed me that the HVAC control unit, the passenger side A pillar column cover, and of course the original radio cassette deck are no longer available as new.  So, over the last couple of weeks I've been on Yahoo Auctions trying to find quality used items.

From my earlier post where I began fixing the damage Worx AutoAlarm had done.
First, the HVAC control unit - my old one is now permanently encased in the shift surround so I would end up having to cut through plastic to get it out.  And given that someone out there probably wants this set up (admittedly a decent alternative to sticking the HVAC control unit in the glove box), I decided to go ahead and find a used HVAC control unit.  Let me know if you are interested in my WORX'd old one!

Second, as I continue to unpack stuff for the house I keep looking for my original OEM radio cassette head unit.  However, it remains to be found. Maybe someday I will find it, maybe not.

Never fear however, I found this on Yahoo Auctions:
Going to have take care of that slight rust on that left bracket...
Complete with brackets too! Total WIN! Having not accessed the space behind the audio since WORX installed the 2 DIN Pioneer CyberNavi, I am concerned that the brackets to hold both the HVAC unit and a 1 DIN radio might also be missing. Of course, brackets can be fabricated, but it's always better if OEM parts are used.

Nice to have everything in one package.  The concern though now is, whether OEM wiring for the head unit is still present in the car. If not, it will be quite painful to get it fixed to be able to hook it back up.  Further, I have no idea whether either of the two parts work!  (a call to NISMO and they told me they have a shop they work with that can fix the head unit so...)

Anyway, I did what I could to clean it up:

I also found this on Yahoo Auctions a few days later.
Not exactly the best packaging but hey it worked...
A bit of wear and tear but I can live with it!
Finally, rummaging in my boxes of car parts (that I have unpacked!) I found this - yep my original ashtray. You may notice it has a cut out in the rear, this was because I was experimenting with LED lighting for the cigarette lighter surround, and wanted that very bright light to illuminate the inside of the ashtray. Not sure if I will keep it or get a new one but at least one less part I have to buy.

I also found the OEM cigarette lighter.
You can see how faded it is. The white graphic outline is gone! 
I also found the original OEM speakers. I think these are for the rear, but you can see how cheap (paper cones) they are.
Still, I wonder what they sound like now...
Lastly - bonus - this was something I had bought a long time ago when trying to figure out if I could use the Nissan OEM CD changer deck that came with the Kenwood Sound Cruising System.  I was able to figure out that the Alpine CD changer that was located in the trunk was similar to the one Honda used in the NSX (just one difference in the harness pin), but I could never find the amp that was mounted in the space next to the battery so gave up...

I wonder if the lettering is supposed to be yellowed like that... if not that would bother me those scratches...
Anyway, combined with a few strategic purchases of some other new items from Nissan and some other used parts on Yahoo Auctions, my interior should soon be back to normal.  Actually, consistent with my theme of OEM+, the result should turn out pretty good.

Now, the next step is trying to figure out if the original audio harness still exists or if it's been hacked as well...

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Two More Additions to the Sidebar - both UK Specification GT-R Related! (Part 2)

As promised, I was able to scan in the hardcover binder-type brochure of the UK spec R33 GT-R.  You can see the 4 holes on each page.

Compared to the non-binder type I scanned in earlier, this one definitely features the UKDM model. Click HERE to go directly to the sidebar page where you can see the entire scan.

Additionally, I found that I had, in my collection, the official press release issued by Nissan GB at the time of the car's launch in the UK. Click HERE to read the entire letter and check out the official photos that were also released then.

Anyway, expect more interesting stuff to appear once in a while as I continue unpacking...

Monday, April 13, 2020

New Addition to the Sidebar Catalog Listing - the UK Spec R33 GT-R (Part 1)

Up until now I really haven't discussed the officially imported UK specification R33 GT-R, because there is so much information out there on it.  For example, Middlehurst Nissan has a nice web page on the car, even to this day. Just a simple Google search away...

But as I continue to unpack (as mentioned in my prior post), I've stumbled across various R33 GT-R related items that I have not yet posted on, including those relating to the UK cars.

For example, I found this.

I scanned the entire pamphlet and added it to the list of catalogs on the right sidebar of this blog, HERE.

What's interesting is that this does NOT show the UK spec model. It actually shows the JDM spec.

Now yes, I know there is a hard bound binder type of brochure as well, which DOES show the UK spec model. I have one. And yes I'll go and upload it tomorrow.


Sunday, April 12, 2020

So as We are All Stuck Inside These Days... (Garage Series)

So with COVID-19 wreaking havoc on the world, I think most of us are stuck (mostly) inside or working at home during most hours of the day. Hopefully none of you (or your family) are adversely affected by this pandemic.

Normally, I would welcome being at home (so long as I am healthy) as I can sneak off in my free time to the garage to work on the car, but right now, having just brought the car back from NISMO, AND how we are STILL unpacking from our move into the new house, the only thing I can do is to continuing organizing my new space. Still can't find all of my tools and car cleaning stuff...

First order of business was to find a place to store parts, both old and new, which I probably won't be using in the near future. The garage is still a work in progress, and I plan to order some cabinets to place along the wall here:
And yes there is a sink with hot and cold taps there too... he he he 
As you can see right now, I'm using some of my old racks to hold mostly car cleaning related equipment in this area.  Some equipment is still missing, most likely still at my mother-in-law's house where we kept non-essentials while this house was being built (and as I had no space at my temporary rental house).

Given my limited budget and how garage cabinets aren't really sold in Japan, I am thinking about ordering something from Alibaba. Can anyone recommend any decent quality garage cabinets/garage cabinet makers? More importantly for my Italian (and other color coordinated talented) friends, COLOR? What COLOR?

So that's for storage. What about a proper work bench?
Damn fish (bought for the kids who now don't care) won't die...

Over here in a corner area, I have just enough space right now to set up an old aluminum rolling cart from IKEA as a mobile work bench of sorts.  All of my hand tools are currently on the tray, and yes that is a fish tank... there are two cory catfish that refuse to die, all the other residents have long passed away but I'm not into pesca-cide just for the sake of clearing space. And so the tank stays until  I get a proper work bench here and then I will come up with an alternative plan.

Anyway - so I have a bunch of old parts taken off both cars, as well as new parts never installed. Eventually if I get the cabinets, yes there will be space between the cabinets and ceiling so some stuff can be stored in that space. Meanwhile...

I did some research and found these DIY assembly storage sheds from Takubo Mono-oki. Just like IKEA, except it's much more solidly built.

So it arrived in several boxes, forgot to take photos but basically after laying the floor piece and making sure it's flat, you build the walls up, then the roof on top. Pretty straightforward but not fun as a one man job (especially when the walls are over 2 meters tall and it's a windy day).
 People usually place these sheds on blocks that themselves are on flat land. I had to get creative due to limited space.
So the rear sits on 3 blocks, but the front side rests nicely on this low wall.

This really isn't a one man job but somehow I managed
I chose the 3/4 shelves style unit as I wanted to be able to vertically store long items
Yep, the oem sideskirts and rear sfrom my car

I have to say the paint quality on this shed (for this price) is impressive.
Made In Japan...
Anyway, now that this lockable shed is up and is now storing a lot of car related parts I won't be needing in the foreseeable future, I need to turn my attention to getting the interior of the garage improved... and at the same time quietly gathering the parts I will need to continue fixing the interior of the GT-R. Stay tuned!
It's almost like owning an EV...