1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

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1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Thu Sep 15, 2016 10:21 pm

Hi all,

Not long ago I welcomed another 4G equipped car to the family. All the way from Sunshine Coast QLD I had the pleasure of driving this rare 80's machine 1,800 kilometers home. I am the 3rd Australian owner since being imported in 2007. The car itself was in need of some TLC & still is for 28 years old, though it's making good progress this far.

This being a late build Starion & one of the last means it got all the good stuff which I've also listed below for anyone curious about this variant.

Plans are to restore it to a satisfactory level & to keep it on the road to be enjoyed.

Modifications & maintenance list to date:

Exterior:
- Stock Wide body
- W09 paint
- 'GSRVR' custom plates
- Chrysler Conquest side mirrors [25/05/16]
- Chrysler Conquest tail lights
- Pajero clear side indicators [05/04/16]
- Reproduction 'GSR-VR' hatch decal
- Philips H4 X-treme Vision Plus [28/06/16]
- Philips H3 Power2night X-treme fogs [30/06/16]
- Smoked front indicator lenses
- Dark tinted windows
- Polished door locks
- 'Intercooler Turbo' side skirt decals [to be fitted]
- All sun damaged rock guard decals removed

Engine Mods/Maintenance:
- Intercooled 2.6 4G54
- Oil changed every 5000km w/ Penrite HPR30 [29/03/16]
- Magna M6 head [previous owner]
- New OEM rocker cover gasket & seal [26/04/16]
- New RHS engine mount [26/04/16]
- New silicone vacuum hoses throughout
- Rebuilt Throttle body [07/04/2016]
- Blitz Dual SBC Boost Controller [previous owner]
- NGK leads [22/03/16]
- NGK iridium plugs [22/03/16]
- Acdelco 430 CCA battery [23/03/16]
- Brass battery terminals [23/03/16]
- New Gates drive belts [30/03/16]
- New Borg Warner rotor button
- New Bosch distributor cap
- New vacuum advance
- New OEM exhaust manifold gasket [02/04/16]
- New turbo, dump pipe & oil gaskets [02/04/16]
- New Bosch style injector clips [04/04/16]
- New 180F thermostat & gasket [07/04/16]
- New OEM rad cap
- New OEM oil & fuel caps [28/07/16]
- MK1 EGR blanking plate [14/07/16]
- New OEM radiator hoses [09/09/16]
- New OEM engine bay stainless mounting bolts & screws [06/07/16]
- New braided oil, fuel & water lines [09/09/16]
- New Trilogy Turbos injectors & adjustable fuel pressure regulator [to be fitted]
- New Prosport electric fuel pressure gauge [to be fitted]

Gearbox/Driveline:
- KM132 5 speed manual conversion [previous owner]
- New OEM gear shift gaskets [25/08/16]
- New OEM gear shift bushes
- Stock 6-bolt LSD
- New LHS half-shaft boots

Exhaust:
- 3" mandrel bent turbo-back exhaust [previous owner]
- Magnaflow 14815 stainless muffler & axle pipe [20/06/16]

Brakes:
- Braided lines front & rear [previous owner]
- Cross drilled rear rotors [previous owner]

Suspension:
- KYB adjustable front shocks in shortened struts [previous owner]
- MK1 shortened rear shocks [previous owner]
- King springs front & rear [previous owner]
- Noltech adjustable front strut tops [previous owner]

Wheels/Tyres:
- Stock 16" x 7" & SHP 16" x 9" [previous owner]
- 4 wheel alignment [24/03/16]

Interior:
- Digital climate control
- Power windows, mirrors & aerial
- Cruise control [to be repaired]
- New OEM NOS 3000GT EQ radio [28/07/16]
- New OEM leather 'weighted' gear knob [28/07/16]
- Magna Elite door light lens
- Rubber gear boot [07/04/16]

Image
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby Scorpma82 » Fri Sep 16, 2016 8:27 am

Classy looking rig you got there mate

Looks really smart
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby Taz » Fri Sep 16, 2016 2:06 pm

Damn thats a nice starion. I drive the VR on midnight wangan 5 as well, definitely in top 3 all time favorite cars for me.
ONLY thing i would change would be to throw some wide watanabes on it, otherwise its perfect.
If you ever decide to part with it down the road let me know ;)
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:50 pm

Scorpma82 wrote:Classy looking rig you got there mate

Looks really smart


Thanks mate, still presents well for it's age after a clean. In photos at least!

Taz wrote:Damn thats a nice starion. I drive the VR on midnight wangan 5 as well, definitely in top 3 all time favorite cars for me.
ONLY thing i would change would be to throw some wide watanabes on it, otherwise its perfect.
If you ever decide to part with it down the road let me know ;)


Cheers for the kind words Taz. A set of matte grey or bronze Watanabes are at the top of my list, when if ever the funds allow for a new set but ideally that's all I would be changing. In the meantime I have a pair of the factory front SHP (Sport Handling Package) wheels coming soon to match the rears as the current setup consists of the standard x7" fronts & SHP x9" rears, which looks noticeably unbalanced.

This one would be a hard one to let go of as it's in my top 3 as well, but we'll see what the future holds :thumpsup:
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:32 am

Almost 12 months of ownership & I still don't have any decent photos of the car but I do have some updates from 2016, the most notable modification was the 1982-1984 semi-digital dash conversion. The cluster was taken from an early jap import which then found it's way to NZ from where I imported it from. As you would expect these are up there in rarity & don't come around often, so whether it was functional or not it was good to have in the collection regardless.

I had no intention to hack the cars wiring so I acquired a donor harness from another 86+ Starion to use for the conversion. As from that year onward the connectors changed.

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What made this conversion a lot easier was that majority of the wiring matched up between both old & new. I didn't have the factory service manual in my possession for the early models at the time as I do now, so in due time I'll be revisiting the few leftover wires which still need connecting for 1 or 2 of the warning lights.

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Early type connectors cut.

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And later type connectors wired up to the existing loom for plug & play into the cars body harness.

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Installed & working.

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New bulbs were fitted as well as a thorough clean of the cluster both inside & out.

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And an overall look of the cockpit. Once installed, the car was taken for a test run. The digital speedo, RPM & boost gauge all operated as they should. Fuel, water temp & oil pressure gauges also functioned as normal. However the amp gauge (not a volt gauge as the later models) was left untouched as more research of how it works will be required. The warning lights such as the door, hatch, engine & water reservoir lights also functioned but as mentioned earlier there is still wires that need to be connected for the handbrake & seat belt warning lights. Other than that the dash is 98% complete & completely drivable in the meantime.

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Fast forward into the new year & I have for the time being reverted back to the analog cluster until I re-grease or replace the speedo cable which I suspect is the cause of some jumpy readings with the digital speedo.
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:35 am

Keeping on the subject of the interior earlier on last year I was looking to upgrade the head unit but to stay clear of anything aftermarket. I wanted something OEM & period correct to look at home inside the interior. After doing some research I found the US market 3000GT/Stealth & various other Mitsubishi's of the same era ('91-'94) had a radio which was direct plug n play in some year model Starions & Conquests. So after several months of searching & waiting for something to show up for sale I came across a NOS head unit on US eBay, new in box never used! This particular unit has some great features which made it even more desirable to have, such as the 7-band EQ, AUX input, internal amp & can even function with the stock steering wheel controls. And best of all it retains the Mitsubishi orange glow when lit up, so it fits right in.

Unfortunately it wasn't plug & play on mine as I have found there is some minor differences in wiring etc. between the US & JP models, however with the help of a reverse wiring harness from Metra meant that very little wiring had to be done.

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Metra reverse harness kit.

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Rear view of the unit.

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This was the old unsightly setup complete with an ill fitting DIN pocket & an Alpine unit which I was using in the Cordia years ago which I removed to fit the stock radio back in it. So naturally it went straight into the Starion when I bought it to rid of the even uglier old out of place Sony head unit that came with the car.

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And here is the new unit fitted, switched on & working for the first time! Another bonus is that the radio FM frequencies are similar between the US & Australia, so the radio can still be tuned. Not that I need the radio but it's good knowing it all works & makes this a complete & proper functional upgrade. The sound quality from this is excellent, even with the stock speaker setup which in due time will be upgraded also.

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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:57 am

Moving onto the mechanical side of things where I have been focusing most of my time on this car, in no particular order here is some general & preventive maintenance & parts replacements to the dated 28 year stock originals which I changed over the course of last year. This is just what I have managed to take photos of, there is still a lot more to be documented!

New OEM oil & fuel caps:

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Old:
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New:
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Rubber seal appears to be full width on the newer cap:
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New oil cap:
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The start of a cleaner looking engine bay, I began replacing a whole bunch of rusted & paint chipped body coloured mounting bolts & screws with new OEM replacements.

x12 OEM mounting bolts for the front guards & nose panel (2 not shown):
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x4 screws for headlamp protectors:
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Before & after of the front guard bolts:
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Before & after of the nose panel bolts replacement:
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Before & after of the headlamp protector screws:
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The old bolts which can now be used as spares elsewhere & out of sight:
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Another replacement cap, this time the P/S Reservoir:

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Old cap with sticker:
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New & old comparison, the updated cap is a nice upgrade with engraved lettering rather than a sticker:
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New cap fitted:
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And the beginning of cleaning up the spaghetti of vacuum hoses, starting with deleting the EGR:

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EGR valve replaced & blanking plate fitted. Earth cable retained as seen:
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T-piece joiner replacing the factory 4 port joiner as there is now 1 less hose used:
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Manifold vacuum port blocked off with shortened hose & bolt (now capped off with a rubber cap)
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EGR solenoid vacuum port also blocked off with shortened hose & bolt (now capped off with a rubber cap)
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The parts removed:
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Now with the EGR removed, I also replaced the broken thermo valve with a 3/8 "BSP hex-socket plug to take it's place & further deleting more vacuum lines:

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Plug & thread sealant ready to go on. Unfortunately at the time there were no stainless plugs in stock as I had intended:
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Thread sealant applied & plug fitted:
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The removed busted thermo valve with previous attempted repairs:
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One of many leaks on this car & one that was progressively getting worse was the gear shift mounting plate gaskets.

New OEM gaskets, MD703655 gasket now discontinued! Last 1 from Mitsubishi JP:
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The leak:
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The gearbox & under body soaked in oil:
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As this was originally an automatic car, 2 of the 4 bolts had to be removed from under the car:
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Gearbox mount had to be loosened & dropped slightly for the bolts to be removed:
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Gear shift partially disassembled & surfaces cleaned of old gaskets & sealant, note the new bushings also which make a world of difference:
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Reassembled with new gaskets & a slight amount of sealant to keep gaskets in place when reinstalling:
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Finished:
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Another leak which needed attention was the water hard pipe from the thermostat housing to the turbo:

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The thermostat housing water pipe had corroded & resulted in a hole forming which was constantly leaking coolant past the hose & onto the housing. Despite replacing the rubber hose with an OEM replacement, a good seal still could not be achieved:
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The OEM replacement hose also appeared to be 'melting' on the other end, leaking onto the vacuum advance. Making this area a leaking mess!
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With everything removed, I chose to use Permatex 'Cold Weld' bonding compound for a semi-permanent solution to repair the problematic water pipe. Once fully cured it can be sanded smooth:
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New OEM thermostat gasket to go on:
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Thermostat & gasket in place:
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Housing refitted along with a new OEM top rad hose:
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New steel braided hose replacement now in place of the old hard pipe:
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Next up was the leaking small heater hose which had ballooned seeking some preventive maintenance before getting worse:

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The OEM replacement:
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Old & new comparison:
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To fit the hose, a mounting bracket bolt (below the exhaust manifold) had to be removed to move the pipe aside to slide the new hose on. I lucked out removing & reinstalling it without removing the manifold:
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Next was the OEM upper radiator hose replacement:
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New & old comparison:
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Installed:
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Some more braided hoses fitted & a quick clean & polish of the turbo:

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With only a minor leak from the old inlet manifold gasket to go now, I chose to move onto a more sinister oil leak which I left the best for last. Not knowing if it was the rear main seal or oil pan, I decided it would be a good time to replace the clutch anyway & for my own peace of mind replace every seal & gasket like I had been, seeing as most other things I discovered on this car were either still original or just no good from neglect of the previous owners.

The leak in question. Also notice the home made bell housing cover which we quickly made up as it had been missing since it was converted to manual some point in it's life:
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Draining the gearbox:
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Gearbox removed:
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Flywheel removed & with oil as far as the eye could see:
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New OEM seal & case gasket:
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Old & new seals:
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Area cleaned of old sealant & gasket & any other oil that was kicked up onto the back of the engine:
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New seal & gasket refitted as well as a small amount of red RTV:
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Newly machined flywheel & new spigot bearing pressed in:
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New Exedy HD clutch replacement:
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Gearbox in the process of being cleaned & old parts removed:
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Upon removing the clutch fork, the metal clip that attaches to the pivot ball was snapped in 2 from the fork:
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A new OEM clutch fork had to be purchased locally for a hefty price! Unfortunately I couldn't wait to import as I needed the car back on the road ASAP:
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Gearbox cleaned & new clutch fork & throw-out bearing installed:
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New OEM gearbox rear oil seal:
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New seal fitted:
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Oil pan removed & surface area cleaned of old sealant & gasket. For ease of removal, the front sway bar mounting points must be unbolted (2 bolts on either side) & sway bar pulled down on until the pan can slide past:
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Oil pan cleaned & new aftermarket Fel-Pro gasket ready to go on, OEM gasket no longer available:
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Clutch & oil pan reinstalled:
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Drive shaft sanded down with 320 grit sand paper of old flaking paint:
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2 light layers of primer & gloss black engine enamel were used:
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Upon reinstalling the gearbox, the oil pan was dropped & drained of any remaining fluid as well as a clean up of the area:
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New OEM pan gasket & drain plug kit:
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New & old drain plugs:
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Oil pan gasket in place held down with a smear of red RTV on the underside corners of the gasket:
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Pan reinstalled, new drain plug fitted & bolts torqued:
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New Redline Shockproof gear oil to finish the job! 2 1/2 bottles were used to sufficiently fill the gearbox. I can safely say that next time I have to remove the box it will be on a hoist!
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And more preventive maintenance, replacing those close to 30 year old parts were new OEM fuel filters, both in-tank & engine bay.

New OEM fuel filter & washers:
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What looks to be the original fuel filter unchanged. For ease or removal, both ends of the hoses were removed from fuel rail & fuel hard line:
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Once removed, the filter was placed in a vice & a 19mm socket wrench & spanner were used to break the eye bolts from the filter:
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All 4 new washers & hoses fitted & torqued while off the car (new braided lines & modified top hat now in place)
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Filter mounted & all hoses reconnected. To reconnect the bottom hose it is easier to work from under the car for better access to the fuel hard line. It will require a 14mm & 19mm spanner to loosen/tighten back up:
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New OEM in-tank fuel filter:
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Old (original?) Filter removed from tank. To remove the filter the tabs must be squeezed & pressed in away from the pipe assembly:
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Wiped clean:
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New filter fitted & reinstalled:
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That's about all I have bothered taking photos of this far, there is still a whole bunch of newer updates which I haven't even started adding yet, but they will come shortly. These just fill the gaps & also show some of the neglected maintenance which this car was in dire need of.
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:33 am

As of 2017, this month I will be replacing the old tired stock 12A turbo in favour of a dealer optioned upgraded 14G turbo. I know this was an option in the US for the 2.6, not sure about Japan however. For the cars supporting modifications I could have chosen an aftermarket 16G for the same money, though I don't want to be running more than 14-15 psi MAX on a daily driven car which I'm building up for reliability over HP hence the 14G being a perfect OEM replacement.

I have also taken the car off the road due to a suspected bad balance shaft bearing/guide or chain. It's one of the above & has now gotten louder prompting me not to continue driving, so I've decided that I'll be removing the balance shafts. I have an elimination kit from the US already here ready to go in & a mostly complete (some parts discontinued) OEM timing kit arriving next week from Japan so I can start the tear down. I have my doubts that the timing components have been changed, so for my own peace of mind yet again everything is getting replaced. By the end of this, there will be very little that has not been freshened up mechanically so I'm hoping for some trouble-free motoring this year so I can focus on the body & interior.

Parts arriving next week:

From Mitsubishi JP:
MD333225 - Water Pump Gasket
MD020308 - Front Crank Seal
MD191427 - Timing Cover Gasket
MD191429 - Timing Cover Gasket
MD191432 - Oil Pump Gasket
MD021232 - Engine Timing Chain Guide
MD021233 - Engine Timing Chain Tensioner
MD021242 - Sheet, Rubber
MD084945 - Dampner, Timing Chain Tensioner
MD024682 - Valve Cover Gasket
MD021246 - Sproket Timing Chain
MD122692 - Sproket Timing Chain
MD154049 - Spring, Tensioner
MD021247 - Gear
MS241117 - Bolt
MF450008 - Washer

From the US:
MD069800 - Oil Pump
MD153644 - Engine Timing Chain Guide (NOS)
MD154048 - Engine Timing Chain (NOS)
MD021219 - Dowel Pin (NOS)
GMB Water Pump 148-2130
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby Scorpma82 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 7:50 am

That's a fair amount of work uve completed there.........well done!!!!
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Re: 1988 Starion GSR-VR Build

Postby CordiaGSR » Tue Feb 21, 2017 1:55 pm

Scorpma82 wrote:That's a fair amount of work uve completed there.........well done!!!!


Now with the BSE & timing kit also done I would hope that is all the major mechanical work I'll be doing for a while!
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