Project TA22 part 3
Posted on February 17 2012
I think we’re a bit overdue for an update on this one so how about a little look back on what we’ve been up to over the last few months with the TA22. Unfortunately I had my desktop hard drive crash just after the move which means I lost about 2 months worth of pictures but I’ll do my best to piece together what I have. To catch you up a little, when we imported this beauty late last year it looked like this…
If you want a little more history on it you can check out the intro HERE. After modifying the chassis to accept the TRD Toscos and over fenders in PART 2 we were left with the car looking a bit more like this.
I may or may not have mentioned this before but after selling the vehicle to one of our customers he had decided than rather take it as its was (which was pretty damn good I might add) he decided to go with a full motor and glass out re-spray as well as a few other modifications along the way and we were happy to oblige. The next thing on the list after the fenders and before stripping the paint was to take care of a few of the fiberglass items that were attached to the car that I wasn’t exactly pleased with the fit and finish of, starting with the front spoiler.
Not the worst I’ve seen by far but there were a few problem areas that needed a bit of attention to get this car to the level it deserves. The fit isn’t bad but it was attached with sheet metal screws, something that always looks a bit cheap and rushed in my opinion.
After removal I also noticed there was quite a bit of damage around the mounting holes that needed to be taken care of as well.
Although fiberglass may have it demerits, the great thing about it its very easy to make repairs and modify if it gets damaged.
A little blocking to take out some of the inherent waviness that almost all fiberglass parts have and this one is ready for paint.
Next up is the TRD rear spoiler.
This one was attached with rivets which might have looked decent at one point in time but not so much anymore.
To add a bit continuity to the entire car I have decided that I will be using the same stainless steel Allen bolts that I used on the fenders to attach the front and rear spoilers as well.
Which meant I had to spend a decent amount of time on all of the chipped up, chamfered holes on the TRD spoiler to get it looking nice and new again.
And it might be a bit difficult to see in the pictures but this one was even more wavy than the front which meant even more blocking had to be done.
The switch to Allen bolts also meant that access holes needed to be made on the backside of the trunk lid for ease of installation and removal.
The customer was looking for a bit more of a modern, monochromatic style with this car so he decided he would like us to paint the factory bumpers in the same shade of White as the rest of the car. We talked about different methods of of prepping the original chrome bumpers in order to be painted but at the end of the day I was having a difficult time with the thought of painting the original bumpers, especially when they are in such good shape and are so difficult to come by these days. With that in mind I was able to talk him into some readily available JDM replica fiberglass bumpers instead, that way I sleep better at night and he also has the option of switching back to the original chrome ones if he gets bored of the white ones.
These bumpers are very well built, probably even stronger than the somewhat thin steel ones but the only issue is that they only come with generic mounting brackets built into them which means you have to fabricate the rest of it yourself. The brackets themselves aren’t terribly difficult to make but building enough adjustability into them to get them to fit as well as I wanted them to is where it gets a little tricky.
My goal with these was to achieve a fitment that was at or better an the OEM originals. Here’s what the steel bumpers looked like before I pulled them off compared to what I was able to get out of the fiberglass ones after a bit of adjustment. Note the gap in between the filler panel and bumper, especially by the corner light.
And now for the rear…
That’s better, nice and tight.
Now it’s time to pull the motor for some cleanup in the engine bay, and some serious stripping.
But that will have to wait for part 4….