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557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Not sure where to start a thread really, if this is even of interest.

I know some forums frown on people not sticking to original stuff, or changing from original etc.

Also discussions that may waiver from the forum subject.

So, a reintroduction, minus the long history.

Evening Gents and Ladies.

I have not been here for a lot of years, divorce, other cars, Covid and many other excuses got in the way.

Last time I had a really nice Mk1 that I spent way too much on, trying to keep or keep happy a wife that has long since left, like the MX5.

So why come back?

I guess having a X-Reg 1.6 with only around 67k miles is a good reason.

Before you get too excited, it is rotten as a pear, missing parts and at best may have been a dangerous “drift to death” car.

I am hoping there are people on here who have removed these 1.6 engines and manual gearboxes for transplanting into other cars, chassis or applications.

People who can advise, give tips, warnings and generally know a lot more than me.

What I have, barn stored a few years.

And this is where the engine, trans and wiring needs to go into.

Known as the Rezin Rockit it is a fiberglass kitkar that came minus engine, gearbox.


If anyone wants to see the rest.


Needing a ton of work.

So far a load has been done to the chassis and running gear.

Next job is refitting the front and rear suspension and running gear, then once back to being a rolling chassis……..

The real work starts, figuring out how to remove and transfer the engine etc.

I hope there are some experienced surgeons on here to guide me.

I am just outside Rochester, Kent, near Allhallows.

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608 Posts
Hi, I would be looking at fitting the complete front subframe under that chassis and also using the mazda rear subframe. the power plant frame would have to go but the gearbox could be held onto a chassis modification and also the rear diff could be fitted in a similar manner. You will then have a Jeepalike that handles like a sports car. I have lifted the entire body tub off a Mk1s suspension using blocks of wood to hold the suspension up. I think there is a write up on this for an exocet conversion.
Do you know what the suspension on the chassis is from.
Good luck with the unusual project.

· Registered
557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi, I would be looking at fitting the complete front subframe under that chassis and also using the mazda rear subframe. the power plant frame would have to go but the gearbox could be held onto a chassis modification and also the rear diff could be fitted in a similar manner. You will then have a Jeepalike that handles like a sports car. I have lifted the entire body tub off a Mk1s suspension using blocks of wood to hold the suspension up. I think there is a write up on this for an exocet conversion.
Do you know what the suspension on the chassis is from.
Good luck with the unusual project.
Hi Dickie,

Thank you for taking the time to write up a response.

There is an issue with the original car losing part of its identity if you switch too much of it out for different parts.

So I will only be doing the engine and gearbox.

This Mazda MX5 continues to impress me.

After a long discussion with @pauly about all sorts of things this morning, one of the things discussed was the imminent death for rebirth of the Canary.

I had already driven it up to the farm and checked all functions, finding it is as good as it promises.

68000 miles or 112000km is not a lot for one of these.

So,I started it up, again the engine fired up like a typical bit of Japanese engineering. Immediately.

I then allowed it to run for a while to get up to temperature and tested all functions.

It worked as needed.

Temperature, Oil pressure etc.


One of the thoughts to consider is using the MX5 clocks as it is all matched up to the car and wiring.

And it needs to somehow replace the centre console mounted instruments and still be functional.

A conversation with @redratbike Mark resulted in this screen grab…..

So maybe it can be done, with a bit of sensibility and finesse

I think it will be an interesting challenge.

Like a lot of things.

I still had a load of things to try get done, but the chill was bone cutting with the fog thrown in.

More in a while.

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557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Behind the scenes discussion with @nickwheeler today resulted in a message that included the following advice.

It would be useful to have a list on a board of what's needed, although Sharpie on the bonnet also works....

Here's a start:

Engine, gearbox and engine loom
Radiator and plumbing
Propshaft, although you probably won't use any of it
Fuel tank and fittings
Pedal box, or at least the clutch pedal and master cylinder
Column stalks, or the whole steering column
Instrument cluster
Throttle cable
Body wiring loom

Stuff that will help:
selection of boxes and bags
tags for labelling, although masking tape works
angle grinder, cutting and grinding discs
several pairs of axle stands
chain for the engine - seatbelts also work

So the services, advice, guidance have been reserved.

It drove the rest of my day after I had started up and checked the vitals of the car one more time.

So I started buy rearranging and clearing a load of stuff in the one side of the garage.

Does not look like much happened in the before and after, but I did manage to find some 18 new, unused M12 x1.5mm thread silver anodised closed end wheel nuts.

Similar to the black ones fitted to the wheels.

Next job will be to find 8 for the rear in a 1.25mm thread pitch and similar style in case there are some cheapies around.

In the end I swept out both garages, cleaned the drill press and all the sharp swarf off the floor, ending with a decent space to lay out parts, including the wiring looms as they get removed from the MX5.



Trust me, it is an improvement.

Next job………

The one I was dreading, because I knew it was chaotic and needed to get done.

Or else no progress.

Unpack the large shed and get right to the back of it to unpack the engine hoist and also the engine stand.

I did discover my full sized traffic light that I bought a few years ago (for sale now)


Ready to rock and roll.

Plan is to check and service the motor on the engine stand and give the transmission a check over and refresh too, before fitting and bolting down.

Makes a lot of sense.

Thanks to all the helpers remote and nearby, advising and guiding on even this part of the build.

Trying to get it right first time out the gates.

Remember the list Nick suggested we work to on the strip down……?

Thought I would get arty-farty and start a list.

Weekend over it seems.


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557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
@nickwheeler spent the whole day here.

Simply put….. A Hero in my book.

We worked from 10.30 to 5.30 with a 45 minute lunch break.

It was 5’C out on the driveway and under the carport.

Dry and no wind meant it was not a bad day.

After a coffee and a chat……

The shopping list bonnet was removed off the MX5, and the chassis and body both pushed up the drive and out the way.

Then we got going.

Nick tore into the front end, engine compartment with a gusto, removing plastics, filters, ducts etc.

I started at the rear, marking and removing all electrical cables, the loom, all in one piece, both of us figuring it out as we went along.

An hour or two later it started to look a bit messy.

The cold was not helping with the hard, brittle plastics.

On and on and on we went.

Nick systematically removing parts, creating piles in order of importance and function.

At some point the cooling system was drained.

Then raised up to be able to crawl around underneath and remove more parts.


Some people have asked why I am chopping up a lovely looking car like this.

Or why not restore the car.

A few pics may give an idea.

Eventually we got to a point where the engine hoist could be brought out and wheeled under the car, attached to the engine and the engine mounts unbolted.

The combination of stretch on the lifting strap, and the fact that the hoists hydraulic ram was not fully extending, having been in the shed for 5 years, and possibly needing a bit of attention, meant that we could not lift the engine and gearbox out of the engine bay.

So I pulled out the grinder and made some space

I also strapped my one strip light to the boom in order for us to see clearly what we were doing.


Knackered, Happy, the pair of us had won round one.

Which left us with a large hole, and as Nick said, thankfully we do not have to refit it all.

And big holes if you look, throughout.

At this point we decided to close the shop as it was dark, cold and 5.30pm which meant hick had to get to Rochester Cathedral.

So a final pic from day one…….

Heart ripped out


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557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Being Awake since 03.20 sucks.

Stripping the MX5 donor - Part 2

When we started stripping the donor, @nickwheeler told me that getting out the wiring loom and the dash etc out would take longer than the engine and gearbox.

Keep in mind that neither of us had ever stripped one before, so a lot of mini-dead ends, fighting parts, and trying to remove parts that maybe did not need to be removed.

Like the exhaust down-pipe to where the catalytic converters been cut out.

So Nick landed by 9.45 and a coffee and chat later, we were going at it.

I had opened the shop by 08.00 anyway and moved some stuff about already.

It was a long day really, and pics all look the same, but we were busy all day and again, some jobs were a nightmare.

Including setting fire to the car, what a stinker that was too.

ECU hidden in the footwell behind a rusted down footplate, and all the fasteners rusted to hell.

Captain Grinder to the rescue.

Speaking of useful tools.

The strip light did duty all day for us, lighting up the interior as we went along.

I managed to get the steering wheel, airbag etc off without hurting myself.

That’s a lot of clever stuff right there.

Nick kept reminding me, we were fortunate that it did not have to go back together there.

And we took a brief respite to go offer up the clocks to the Rezin Rockit dash.

Looks like it should work.

Then back to the struggle, which was real.

Marking the loom clearly as we went along since starting to remove it all the day before yesterday made a ton of sense.

As does plugging as much of it back together again before stashing it away.

Eventually leaving us with this lot, plus the engine loom reattached to the engine etc.

This pic taken by 4.30

By 5.30 this was the scenario…..

Time flies when there is a lot to do.


And having gone back like a drunk wanting to get one more kick in into the guy on the ground, Nick and I had pretty much run out off stuff to do and it was getting cold again.

But we went back to remove the wipers, arms and motor as, if you recall, I had removed the screen and 3 original wipers months ago.

I still need to figure out if I can run the final car through MOT without wipers if the screen can be folded down onto the bonnet, in effect leaving it without a screen.

So by 6.30 this happened…………..

Leaving us with this.

It was a long, rewarding day.

Tools packed away, coffee, warm up and more chat, planning and scouring Kitcar Solutions website for bits I will need next, like a pair of rubber gearbox mounts.

For today I have to remove the fuel pump, sender unit and raise the rear to get the propshaft out.

Then swap around all the piles of car, parts, scrap before Christmas.

The MX5 fuel tank seems inaccessible so another plan will be made.

Not removing that rusted rear subframe.

Later gang.


· Registered
3,097 Posts
Safe to say the chassis is dead looking at those pictures.
What tests do you have there as UK that wouldve been flagged and failed mot ( yearly test) quite some time ago.

Sent from my SM-N950F using Tapatalk

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557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
First a video summary of yesterday and a countdown by @nickwheeler.

Really was an amazing feeling getting to this point.

I am so pleased at the pace we were able to lay out for the two days.

Resulting in this video:

Click Link.


This morning I needed to get some food early, before the world and their cat was out in the shops.

So I popped into Aghabridge and bought a roll of brake pipe and also a pair of M8 rubber mounts, to create the gearbox chassis mount.

The rubber mounts were £18.00 for the pair, kinda eye watering, but I did not have many options as I may be getting onto this sooner than later and postage and shipping is a bit silly this time of the year.

Back home I dealt with a load of work related stuff, after all, work does come first.

Then later I popped down and lifted the rear end, fought the exhaust system, broke two 1mm grinder blades as the exhaust was not cooperating.

Then cut the hangers out back, and managed to cut the pipe over the rear axle, rescuing the small resonator which looks to be stainless.

I also got the impact wrench and removed the driveshaft bolts, ticking off another item on the list.

Then I got inside the car and got to the final item……. Fuel tank parts.

Final tally……..

The next job was to pack all the parts that had been removed, back into the car, tidy up the carport.

Then came the shuffle…..

Also got the hoist in on the motor as it was not in the right place, middle of the carport.

And a mobile engine and gearbox.

After a lot more pushing and shoving I had the carport sorted.

The MX5 is ready for @KevFromWales to collect it again………

At this point Mickey came around to check up on me, he had had quite a few pints at lunchtime and managed to sleep all afternoon .

Typically he asked why I had not called him to come and help…….

Drunks….. bloody useless on a job, just get in the way.

Anyway, I was happy.

5.30 and today jobs were wrapped up.

I am on vacation from tomorrow, so a few things may happen.

But I am also spending some time with Sally as she is incredibly tolerant of me and my garage time.

Merry Christmas everyone.
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