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 The Transition - My MX3 story. 
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
Posts: 145
Location: Guelph Ontario
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Post The Transition - My MX3 story.
It all started off in 2005 when my Ford Probe decided that it wanted to become a boat... It had always wanted to be a boat, and one day while driving home through a torrential downpour, at the corner of Warden & 14th avenue, where a water-main also broke, the car sucked it's 1.25L of incompressible fluid and seized solid... then started floating along until it rested gently against a curb... with the passing of each truck, the wake making my probe bob up and down in the water... I ended up swimming out my window into a passing truck. The car was a write off, obviously, and I was glad to be off that boat.

I went a year of school in Peterborough without a car... well, more like a fall and a winter, and when summer came along I found this guy in London On. selling his KLZE swapped MX3, which had a nice little skirt kit on it too.
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That MX3 lasted me almost 2 years, until while driving from Hamilton to Toronto, I lost my waterpump/power-steering belt and the engine COOKED itself until the head gasket blew, and well... it died.

But I wouldn't let it go... So I had it towed from Hamilton to Markham, where I could store it at my dad's place until I could get a new engine to drop in... I never did, and it stayed in the garage being unloved for many years... my dad died last year (2013). So we cleaned out his place, and I had the car towed to my new house in Guelph. Engine, now seized solid.

Having a small inheritance, I thought I would fix the old girl up... but when I started looking for KLZE engines, I came across another KLZE swapped MX3 out in the Cambridge area. The body was in horrible shape, and the car was covered in stickers and stuff that made it look horrible... but the engine was good...
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Hey! Maybe I can grab that for a song and a dance and be on my merry way! So I waited until the last possible second and grabbed the car before it was going to hit the scrappers. (Owner was moving to Alberta and was taking his VW, the Mazda wasn't going with.)

So then it was just a matter of picking which car to swap what with. His was a 1995, mine was a 1992... mine needed electrical and engine work... his needed body and suspension work... and his had less rust. BINGO!


June 02 2014, 11:13 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
Posts: 145
Location: Guelph Ontario
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The passenger side rear quarter panel needed a bit of work.
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Not sure what happened to it... but it wasn't going to be a quick fix... well actually, it wasn't too bad.
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Off it goes! You can see where they tried to hammer it out from the inside... nope... didn't work.
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Perfect fit!

A couple hundred rivets and it was properly secure...
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Currently being sanded and prepped for paint!


June 02 2014, 11:25 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
Posts: 145
Location: Guelph Ontario
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I've got much more to show and tell, but for now that's where we'll leave off.


June 02 2014, 11:31 AM
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Joined: August 21 2009, 5:24 PM
Posts: 1196
Location: Prattsburgh NY
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Nice work replacing the 1/4 panel.

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June 02 2014, 8:25 PM
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Joined: August 24 2009, 5:02 PM
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Location: Chicago, Illinois
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very nice work! Not an easy task!


June 03 2014, 12:55 PM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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So, while we were doing the body work the issue arose that there was not much left to salvage of the original sunroof. The metal was so thin in spots that it would be a fiberglass mess to get it all properly sealed again.

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So I went hunting for a replacement sunroof, preferably aftermarket... Obviously no one makes an MX3 sunroof anymore. Our cars have a similar aftermarket to that of the Dodge Aries.

Digging around I discovered a RX7 forum where those guys were looking for MX3 sunroofs to replace their rusting roofs... Hmmm... Well, if the RX7's sunroofs were the same as the MX3s... then the RX7's aftermarket sunroofs will be the same!! Score me one Carbon Fibre sunroof... (Which kulluminati scored first, because his order to California took 2 less weeks than mine to Ontario. :evil: Yay Canada Post)

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So that solved one problem... now to tackle the rest... :-)


June 23 2014, 9:28 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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Sanding sanding... all day...
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June 26 2014, 4:31 PM
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Joined: February 05 2014, 7:33 PM
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I like what I'm seeing here bud!


June 26 2014, 6:25 PM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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 Re: The Transition - My MX3 story.
Went on okay... I think it needs a layer of clear coat... or two.
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Those who know what to look for can see where I tried to get it to blend the nice sharp door crease with the rear fender crease... very close, but I couldn't get it as sharp. :(
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It's not like it's bad... considering how horrible the quarter panel was when I picked it up... but, it's not perfect.
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June 27 2014, 8:02 AM
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Joined: March 08 2010, 8:21 PM
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Location: Canandaigua, NY
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I love that color! If you were closer Ild be begging you to do my body work/Paint.

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June 27 2014, 8:35 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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The colour is Mazda Carbon Grey Mica... I think the colour code was 28B.
Funny thing is Mazda has almost 12 shades of Grey or Silver Mica.


June 27 2014, 10:11 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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Well it's done!

Thing wouldn't start... spent a bunch of time trying to figure out why the starter wasn't working... after an hour of troubleshooting and tossing in my spare starter... I realized the connection to the battery was corroded... and the problem was solved.

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It likes to move. :-) I think I could use some wheel spacers to give it a bit wider look on the front & rear.


July 18 2014, 11:34 AM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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So now for a list of mods...

Start with the 2.5L KLZE Engine, obviously the best and simplest start.
Curved neck manifold, Standard VAF... KLDE computer. :-( <-An area in some need of improvement

Eibach Lowering Springs and some no-name aftermarket Struts...
Car rides firm, not so cushy... probably has some room for improvement here too.

Whiteline Rear Anti-swaybar, and Reaction Front and Rear Strut Tower bars. <- Arguably the best handling improvements that you can make to the car. Now if only they made a beefier front anti swaybar.

The skirt kit is the "Invader Style" from the late 1990's... and it's been kicking around for at least that long, I can't for the life of me remember who made it. I'm still hunting for the "Invader" hood to match.

I've got a spare intake manifold that I hope to modify at the shop... we'll see how that goes. I'm trying to open up some more torque & power under the 3700RPM... Longer runners needed.


July 18 2014, 2:04 PM
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Joined: April 11 2007, 1:39 PM
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Location: Guelph Ontario
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My little mazda is running a wee-bit rich across the board... I don't have any data collected on this besides the smell of unburnt fuel in the exhaust.

Also, maybe it's just been awhile since I last drove the KLZE, but does anyone else find that once that second VRIS point opens up around 4200 there is a massive jump in power?

I'm thinking a FPR and Megasquirt system might be in my future, does anyone have any suggestions?


July 31 2014, 11:53 AM
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Joined: July 27 2006, 8:09 PM
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Location: Chattanooga, TN
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Post Re: The Transition - My MX3 story.
because the VRIS points aren't matched properly for a curve neck manifold, the VRIS opens up at a non-optimal time. that's why power doesn't feel like a smooth "linear" increase.

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July 31 2014, 3:17 PM
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