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Thread: rkrenicki's 1992 Subaru Sambar SDX - 2017-07-25 - Back on the Road!

  1. #61
    SLi O.G. 98legwag's Avatar
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    So that means the Blitzen clone is not one of your primary vehicles?
    My cars:
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  2. #62
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Yesterday, I did some major cleaning of the interior, replace the heater box, and installed a bunch of FatMat (a DynaMat clone). I used an entire big roll of paper towels and a whole bottle of windex cleaning out all of the "JDM dirt" before laying down all of the FatMat. I did under the seats and halfway up the back, as well as behind the airboxes along the "firewall" so far. I will also install it in the doors, the remainder of the back, and probably along the roof. It has significantly quieted the truck down already, I cannot wait to finish the job.

    Under driver seat:


    Behind driver seat, also with Subaru Underseat Subwoofer from a Forester. I havent wired it up yet, but that will be soon.


    Under passenger seat:


    The fatmat extends all of the way across behind the airbox.


    And up behind the wiper mechanism on both sides:



    Today, I went to the UConn Spring Car Show. A massive show of all makes and models. I saw a good number of interesting cars, but the best thing was stumbling across another Kei Truck! This one was a Honda Acty. I managed to move my Sambar over to take a couple of pictures next to it.


  3. #63
    SLi O.G. Muse's Avatar
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    You really convinced me of the worth of that sound deadening material. The Sambar is so much quieter inside now.
    Ivan - 1995 Legacy L wagon. Silver. 5mt.
    1997 Legacy Brighton wagon. White. (Parts car, scrapped.)
    Grace - 1995 Legacy L wagon. WGM. (Sold for scrap. RIP.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lancaster6
    A sherpa could rip ass somewhere high up in the Himalayas and my Prius will be blown almost off of the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki View Post
    Yesterday, I did some major cleaning of the interior, replace the heater box, and installed a bunch of FatMat (a DynaMat clone). I used an entire big roll of paper towels and a whole bottle of windex cleaning out all of the "JDM dirt" before laying down all of the FatMat. I did under the seats and halfway up the back, as well as behind the airboxes along the "firewall" so far. I will also install it in the doors, the remainder of the back, and probably along the roof. It has significantly quieted the truck down already, I cannot wait to finish the job.
    Don't make it that quiet that you can't hear what is happening underneath you.
    Pedro

  5. #65
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, I have run into a bit of an issue with the engine. The other day, I replaced the crank and cam oil seals, timing belt, water pump, and valve cover gasket. The engine is running great, except now the oil pressure light comes on when the engine fully warms up.

    I am trying to track down the issue now, but it appears that the oil pump is directly behind the crank oil seal which I had some issues getting to seat properly. I think I may end up having to replace the oil pump, which is proving more difficult to track down than I originally expected.

  6. #66
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    I plumbed in a mechanical oil pressure gauge, and it never drops below 20 PSI, even idling at full temp.... so I am thinking that the 25 year old oil pressure switch may be the issue here.

    Luckily, it is the same switch as a Justy, just with a slightly different connector. I ordered a replacement on rockauto (a whopping $2!) and I will replace it. That said, I think I might get a proper oil pressure gauge and permanently mount it. The gauge I picked up yesterday is mechanical and has a 6 foot long hose. Since the engine is in the back of the truck.. that wont work for me long-term.. I have it currently zip-tied to the tailgate, 2-SEXY style.

  7. #67
    SLi O.G. 98legwag's Avatar
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    Now you need a massive front mount for full on 2-sexy style.
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  8. #68
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    I think I finally have the oil leaks figured out, I added some oil-resistant RTV to the valve cover gasket, and it does not seem to be leaking there anymore. It also looks like the two oil seals behind the timing belt are holding now as well. My new oil pressure switch will be here later today, so hopefully that will fix my oil light.

    I have a couple of pictures from the process that I hadn't posted.

    Valve cover cleaned, logo shined up, and reseated:


    First, the rear shocks are toast. This is fully compressed and it does not self-rebound. I ordered some brand new replacements today.


    Shiny new water pump, timing belt, and timing belt pulley.


    While I had it all open.. here is the Supercharger. It is about the same size as the alternator, but a tad big longer.

  9. #69
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    Ivan - 1995 Legacy L wagon. Silver. 5mt.
    1997 Legacy Brighton wagon. White. (Parts car, scrapped.)
    Grace - 1995 Legacy L wagon. WGM. (Sold for scrap. RIP.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lancaster6
    A sherpa could rip ass somewhere high up in the Himalayas and my Prius will be blown almost off of the road.

  10. #70
    SLi nOOb Somac's Avatar
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    This thing is so neat! I kind of figured but never really knew Subaru had a kei truck prior to this thread. Seeing a supercharged I4 in it just adds to the oddities. Very cool!

  11. #71
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    I had my order from RockAuto and another box from Japan show up today. I replaced the oil pressure sensor, and it works great now with no more light.

    I did have my Sambar Dias (van version) cluster show up. After some odometer adjustment, I repinned the truck and installed it. The tachometer requires me running a wire back to the engine, which I have not done yet, but everything else is working great.


    I also installed the wiper stalk from a Sambar Dias, which has an intermittent mode. I did not realize just how much I used that function until I owned a vehicle that did not have it. That.. and headlights that automatically turn off when you remove the key. I need to modify the truck to do that as well.

    I also changed out the fuel filter, and the gas that came out of it was quite brown. It is probably the original filter.

  12. #72
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    My co-worker brought his Mini Cooper to work today. The truck is about a foot shorter than it.


    I also discovered the answer to the question... How fast is my little engine actually spinning at highway speeds... That would be 5500RPM or so.

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    Let me know when you do the auto-off lights. I really need that on the Sol. It's a good thing I have a 5 speed in it or I would have stranded myself twice now.
    Ivan - 1995 Legacy L wagon. Silver. 5mt.
    1997 Legacy Brighton wagon. White. (Parts car, scrapped.)
    Grace - 1995 Legacy L wagon. WGM. (Sold for scrap. RIP.)
    Luna - 1993 Honda Civic Del Sol Si

    Quote Originally Posted by Lancaster6
    A sherpa could rip ass somewhere high up in the Himalayas and my Prius will be blown almost off of the road.

  14. #74
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    I tried to get a picture of all three of the Subaru's together the other day, but having one dark car.. it was proving a little difficult to get them all to come out nicely. This is the best one from that day after some adjustments to get them all visible.


    In the meantime, my new rear shocks and front rotors showed up today. Looks like they sent me KYB KSA1134 shocks, and Tokico TY021KB rotors. The shocks went on today, but I have not yet driven it around but given how notchy the passenger side was.. and how completely blown the driver side was.. It should be a vast improvement. The rotors will get replaced later in the week.

  15. #75
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    So.. good news: I made and installed a harness for the "underseat" (behind-seat?) subwoofer, and a sub in that location seems to be able to do what I want quite nicely.

    Bad news: The sub that I bought is bad. It sounds like the amp is working okay, but the speaker itself seems to be blown. I am not sure if I am going to replace the whole thing or just the speaker inside of it... Either way, it is a pain since I used a bunch of 3M tape to mount it, and it is going to be a serious pain to take it off. I probably should have tested it before I mounted it so "permanently"

    Otherwise, the brake pads and rotors went on last night and everything is riding quite nicely with them and the shocks from the other day. The back end no longer skips around on some of the medium size bumps in the road. All that is left at this point from a maintenance perspective is the clutch.

  16. #76
    SLi O.G. 98legwag's Avatar
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    The speaker inside is really odd. Not like a normal speaker. Here is a picture of one of my old ones that gave up the ghost.

    My cars:
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  17. #77
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Yea, I knew that, but I still might be able to source a replacement. I also tried ordering another underseat sub, and that one was blown as well... I might need to look at some sort of alternative here..

    Otherwise, I took advantage of the nice weather this weekend and I tackled some of the exterior of the truck. I had some bubbled up rust spots on the roof that I ground down and repainted, and I also repainted the bumper back to the original black.


    I am going to polish out the turn signals and brake lights and then tackle the rust spots on the bed, probably sometime during the week. Once the sides come back from powder coating, then I will get some bed liner, and it should be all done!

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    SLi nOOb Somac's Avatar
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    Looking good!

    What is the end goal for the truck? Mostly stock with a few OEM+ upgrades? Seems like it'll turn heads no matter what's done to it.

  19. #79
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Somac View Post
    What is the end goal for the truck? Mostly stock with a few OEM+ upgrades? Seems like it'll turn heads no matter what's done to it.
    Yep, I bought it to use it for what it is, a truck. Keeping it largely stock with just a few minor comfort upgrades here and there.

    Otherwise, I took the bed off yesterday to attack the rust between the bed and the cab. Er.. I mean I removed it for weight reduction.


    Here is the whole driveline.


    This is some of the rust here. Looks like a few dents occurred during its time in Japan, and water sat in the seam. I stripped it down with a Paint/Rust stripping wheel, and I am going to use some POR-15 to treat it before I paint and Bed-line it.

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    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Three coats of POR-15, some primer and paint later.. the truck is back together.

    POR-15 applied:


    Painted:


    I did the same on the bed, but I need to finish it off before I have the truck bed-lined. In the meantime @Yamazaki came up for a few days and we took care of a couple of projects on both the Cappuccino and the Sambar. I will let him post about the stuff done on his car, but here is the stuff we did for mine:

    Power window retrofit. I need to grease the mechanism for the passenger side, as it struggles to go up.. but overall, I am super happy with this:


    Yamazaki spent some time with a buffer and polished out a lot of the oxidized paint. Here is a half-and-half shot where the right side is shiny, and the other is still dull.


    We also installed a new "underseat" subwoofer behind the drivers seat. After dealing with two different blown Subaru subs, I found a suitable new unit by Kenwood. A KSC-SW11.



    Just before he left, I took out the drone and took some pictures of the two Kei cars side by side.




    The Sambar and Cappuccino are the same length and width.. but the Cappuccino comes up to just about the bottom of my windscreen..

  21. #81
    t3h ub3r m3mber dodik's Avatar
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    isnt it wonderful how so much car can be crammed into such a small package.
    09 Subaru Tribeca -- slow and ....um fat, definitely fat.

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    SLi Resident Matty2Hotty's Avatar
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    You mean someone can actually fit inside the Capp with the hardtop on?
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  23. #83
    Super Moderator Dead91silvia's Avatar
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    She's coming along nicely! Love the shots next to the Capp.

  24. #84
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    I picked up some new paint to re-do the bed. It came as a recommendation from another Kei-truck owner who said that it stood up to the abuse on his truck bed very well. He stripped his Acty down to bare metal, primed and top coated with Seymour MRO High-solids paint. I picked up 2 cans of primer and 2 cans of white for $36 and figured that was cheap enough to try that out before resorting to shelling out $600+ for bed liner. I took care of the engine hatch today, and I think it came out pretty good.


    In between coats, I decided to finish polishing out the rest of the truck. I stripped everything off and got to work.


    Since I ended up with an extra model decal, I decided to put it on the front hood since newer models have some sort of badge there.


    After this, I waxed the whole cab exterior. I am sure that this truck had never seen soap, nevermind wax before. The paint needed some serious TLC, but it is pretty good now!


    I still need to figure out how to deal with the faded dash, and the discolored passenger seat, but the interior is looking pretty good now as well.



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    SLi nOOb Somac's Avatar
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    Subaru must have been awfully optimistic when they put a 140km/h speedometer in the van.

    Unfortunate how the under-seat metal is made because that means you can't swap in any other Subaru seat from the looks of it. It's so odd how much the passenger seat is faded compared to the driver seat but I guess it makes sense since someone is occupying the driver seat.

  26. #86
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Somac View Post
    Subaru must have been awfully optimistic when they put a 140km/h speedometer in the van.
    Not that optimistic.. I have made it to about 130km/h in the truck before (as @Grimmrican can attest)... The van is only a little bit heavier, and has the same engine.

    The drivers seat was replaced just before it made its way to me, it appears to be a new or at least a very well cleaned seat. The passenger seat is original. The seat mounts are quite different, but even if they weren't.. there is not a whole lot of extra room between the seat and steering wheel for a larger seat and myself. @Yamazaki bought up some seat covers that, while quite comfy.. made it challenging to get in and out of the truck with the side bolsters. The covers would shift out of position while sliding myself in and out, and eventually the strain caused them to tear on one of the seams.

    Otherwise, in preparation for the trip down to MD for the Mid-Atlantic Meet, I decided to repaint the bed. After I pulled the bed off, I took a good long look at the drivetrain and decided to replace my clutch instead. Stripping off the intake and exhaust, i found that both of the rubber intake joiners to the supercharger were cracked, so I have some replacement silicone joiners on the way.


    I also found that the muffler has a bit of a crack. I am not sure what I am going to do with it yet, but the local Meinake said that they would not weld it.


    I have had this engine hoist for over a year.. and I finally had a chance to use it. Since this was my first clutch job, I ended up making a few mistakes and pulled the engine three different times over the last three days..


    After everything was all said and done, I replaced the crank oil seal, clutch disk, pressure plate, and throw out bearing. The original clutch disk and plate was recently replaced, but the throw out bearing was VERY noisy. I guess I will keep the old "Drivejoy" branded Exedy clutch as a spare.

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    t3h ub3r m3mber Grimmrican's Avatar
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    Oh here we go! You should still color the VC.

    Also the truck for sure has plenty power, it's very fast and nothing I expected out of it.
    Subaru Legacy L

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    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    While I had everything apart, I started up the engine with no exhaust hooked up. It sounds pretty mean with essentially nothing on head, and I really like the bubble sound that it makes, but it was not very happy to stay running like that for sure.


    I ended up using some high temperature Quiksteel on the muffler. The first batch was quite runny and it ended up falling into the muffler in one spot.. so I had to buy another little tub of it and patched up the whole bit. It is not pretty, but it seems to be working quite well. The truck is quite a bit quieter now.. I just figured they were all that loud, but they are not.


    The sides should be back from the powdercoater soon, so I tackled the paint on the bed itself. My daughter and I stripped it down to bare metal in the spots where there was any rust, and scuffed up the rest of it.


    Two coats of high-solids primer, and three coats of high-solids gloss white later..


    I will let it cure for the next two days before reattaching the bed. Once that is done, I can refill the coolant and actually move the truck just in time for the MD meet!

    While I was waiting for the primer to dry, I ended up trying to hook up my Subaru Select Monitor to the truck. I have the "up to 1997, all models" cart but I was not sure if it would work on this. I made what is essentially a SSM1-to-OBD adapter cable and plugged in the SSM2. Lo and behold!


    Calls it out by model name and year! I can read all of the data, and there are no codes to be read now that the exhaust is reattached.


    I just have to fabricate and install a new head liner, and possibly repaint the valve cover prior to heading down to MD. We will see how much time I end up having.

  29. #89
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    6 weeks later, I finally have the bed sides back from the powdercoater. After applying the new decals and replacing some new hardware.. the truck is now ready for this weekend.









    I do still have some LED tail lights, LED spot lights, and the gauge pod to install, but none one of those will likely end up on the truck prior to the weekend.

  30. #90
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    So, after an eventful trip down to Maryland for the SL-i meet and Boxerfest.. The little engine decided that it had enough of highway speeds when I was halfway home, and it sounds like it probably spun a bearing. 8 Hours and several hundred dollars worth of towing later.. The little Sambar did make it back to my garage.



    Depending on the heat, I should have the engine pulled tonight or tomorrow to really assess the damage, and come up with a game plan.

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