My Piazza 2 - UK edition

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twocan
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My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

Hello All,

So i used to have an aus spec piazza way back in 2007 (didn't post much) which i bought from a guy down the road for $300, i did a whole bunch of things got it on the road and drove it around for ages and eventually replaced it with a x100 Chaser, which was awesome, not sure where that car ended up but i guess it was scrapped as it was pretty manky by the time i'd finished with it. Long story short moved to the UK bought a few other cars like mr2's rx8's etc but i always wanted to have a piazza again (much to my wifes disgust) anyway opportunity came up a years ago during lockdown to get hold of one so i took the chance and bought it.

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after some negotiation i got the car back to my place of works
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and then instantly did dumb things (because im still a 12year old at heart)
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which in hindsight was really dumb because the brakes were seized and it warped the rear discs but i didn't find that out until far later

finally back i a piazza i reviewed what i bought and found it was as rusty as my first one but in easier places to fix,

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i did get a quote for someone to do it but they would weld new steel over the top of it and i sort of wanted the old steel cut out. anyway for better or worse as it was lockdown and i had easy access to the workshop at work i decided to do it myself. I'm by no means an accomplished welder and most people would agree that this is barely passable but it did pass, at some point it will get redone by a professional and will be good from there.

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As part of getting it back on the road i had to rebuild the brakes and run new copper pipe to the rear as they had corroded away. I use Hel Brake hoses who made up a full set (including 5th hose) and then didn't charge me for it so was very happy about that.
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I also had to get a new fuel pump, filters and fuel lines as they had corroded away and the tank had gummed up as it sat for 15 years. POR15 worked well as a degreaser and cleaner, i didn't do the acid bath or reseal but i think at some point it will have to be done as the tank itself is probably a bit suspect.
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I also bought some cheap Rota BM8 wheels (15 x 8 et0) as i couldn't get on with the OEM tri spokes. they didn't quite fit but with a 3mm spacer and some jiggling they went on the front without to much issue and the rear has a little poke outside of the gaurd. I really want some AME F-Zero's but i don't have that much money and am happy enough with how it looks.
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after that i took it for MOT which it passed after a little bit of correction for the slightest leak from the 5th hose T piece as the HEL fitting was a different type of compression fitting but i had the tool so i remade the pipe ends and it went together OK after that. bad photo but post MOT lens soften used so you can see the rust .....

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After that i did quite a bit of driving around the place to wales and the like just enjoying the car.
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I covered only 3500miles that year but it was great fun and the car had very few issues for something that had sat for 15years.
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

After that i decided to put it on the dyno at work (luck to be working where i do)

in completely standard trim with roughly the right losses etc
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It made 130hp and 155lbft torque which is a little bit low but i think i might have been a few degrees off in timing.
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I was happy enough with that as it gives me a good place to start from in the future.
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

Did some corner weighing a while ago using the scales at work, figures are what youd expect I guess but the left to right weigth difference is more than I thought especially with fatty old me in the drivers seat.

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I didn't do it properly with all of the sway bars disconnected but hey, close enough for me. Perhaps someday il do it again if I ever actually know what I'm supposed to be doing.

Results were (kg)
L R
F 376 395
R 279 287

Front to rear
56-44%

Left to right 48 - 52%

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The weigth with driver on board
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Last edited by twocan on Tue May 02, 2023 3:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Piazza_man
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Piazza_man »

Now that established a baseline what are your next moves?
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

So far on the list is to finish and check the new lowered springs, what I should do after is get the rust on the rear of the car sorted.....

What I will probably do is start collecting parts for a standalone ecu along with other performance parts. I would like to stick as close as possible to looking isuzu standard but I dont know how or if this will go. Also ulez in the uk makes it difficult to drive (its 12pounds for a day) which will get expensive quick if I try drive it often.

Mne has a tendancy to run really rich randomly, it could be an air leak or a dodgy injector but idle, afr control ignition control and boost control could be covered better I think by an new age control system. On previous cars this has worked out ok for me as I quite enjoy the process even though the results are not always the greatest.

I am also not that impressed with the 4sp auto it works well enough and the overdrive ratio is good but it certainly has some strange characteristics. I've only really had manual cars so I dont really know what I'm doing but the fluid level should be ok (I tried to check it like the manual says) but it whistles when hot, shift soft and shudders sometimes an other times shifts harder when you dont really want it too. I'm not sure if tone else has any experience with the 4sp autos in a piazza but would love to hear what peoples experience is.

I would also like to get a decent head unit into the car that looks ok but has modern features. I have been looking at the blaupunkt sqr46, but it's very expensive and from the reviews a little easy to break.

Enough rambling for now. Will post some updates regarding g springs in a bit
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Piazza_man
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Piazza_man »

You can always do what some others have done through this forum, and convert from auto to manual. It may be something worth considering. IPTOC has spare manual gearboxes, parts and the knowledge to help you if decide to go down this route.
Pizzatime
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Pizzatime »

I recognise this from one of the facebook groups. Good stuff man! Love how it looks.
We need to drag some more of the piazza crowd back here I reckon
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

Yeah, I may go down the manual route but we'll see maybe the auto box just needs a good service. I need to talk to the IPTOC as I'll need more parts in a little bit I'm nut sure how bad axel groans should get but I suppose I should look at bearings the new (old) diff was of unknown origin so it could be a bit buggered who knows.

I've gotten a lot out of this forum so thought I should try contribute a bit as well. Also helps me remember what I've done. If you've already seen me spamming facebook sorry but while I was doing the springs and things I made up some side skirts using,
- L angle aluminium 30x20x2
- rubber stain tread (nosing) after a tip from one of the other piazza guys
- some hand made V's to screw the angle to the side skirt and to the OEM plastic side trim.

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I think the whole process could have been done much nicer by someone with more skills but hey.

I also crafter some isuzu badges which I'm partially happy with by purchasing some stickers and sticking them to a piece of 25 x 2 aluminium bar the screwing them to the side skirts (to cover the gap where 2 pieces of tread are butted together). End result looks a bit like this.

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Stair tread was screwed and zip tied on to the front lip as a little lip extension as well, exuse the uncut ties I'll get to that at some point.

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Also when I we do g the skirts I was convinced by a friend (didn't take much really) to put neon undertow on the car.
So I bought a cheap kit which I modified (the cheap kits dont come with plugs to disconnect the lights individually so I bought some connectors and cut and extended the wiring for the led stops. I installed them using led stip clamps screwed into the aluminium L and zip tied them to the inner L of the front lip stair tread. The do have adhesive backs on them as well so the do stick on ok just not sure how long they'll last. All in all it turned out a bit like this

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I should really get to writing something about the spring install, I dont have many photos but it might be helpful for future spring swaps etc.
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Piazza_man
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Piazza_man »

Interesting little mods. Thanks for the write up too :supz:
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Nismo
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Nismo »

Hi man! Also recognize this one from the FB groups! Had missed that you were writing a thread here as well! NICE!

Now I should probably show a godd example and keep updating my own thread here! ;)
ISUZU PIAZZA TURBO -89 | HANDLING BY LOTUS
KAIZEN RACING PROJECT かいぜん
www.nismo.se | www.kaizenracingproject.com
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

Yeah i put stuff on facebook a little more frequently but its good to do proper things here sometimes too. i did see your page and i really like the pure 90's vibe of your car playstation and all, so cool.

I have taken it out to a few places, stonor park was the last one we went to and it was fun lots of very expensive cars, and then a piazza, still was fun.
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also went to the ace cafe on probably th only sunny day in the uk this year, there was a car wash next door and the guys did an admiral job of making it look nice.
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so recently i haven't been doing a whole lot other than make a battery bracket up using a generic ebay battery bracket and a flat peice of steel i had laying around.
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end result looked about like this.
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I have been accruing parts for upgrade, and doing some research on various different things to try modernise the poor old girl a bit. baby steps though i will hopefully get some time to take photo's of what i'm trying to achieve. Big pile o parts under the desk at work.
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the wills welding manifolds look quite good.
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hopefully not so long before i make some more progress, but everything like this takes time. enjoy piazzaing guys.
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Piazza_man
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Piazza_man »

Thanks for the update, and a forum like this allows you to go more granular if you want. I’m really liking the extra gear, that’s some serious bolt-on kit. Did the exhaust and intake plenum come from Australia? Tell me more about the turbo too 😍
twocan
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by twocan »

Yeah I agree the forum does allow you a little more detail, I think for me it helps me remember what I've done and how far the car has come as I sometimes forget how much fun it's been when it takes 45mins to put a new licence plate on the front because every bolt snaps and the the rivets in the plastics pull out when your drilling and tapping the old plate, 80s jdm life though so wouldn't change a thing.

The two manifolds are from will welding in aus. They look like quite good quality but I haven't offered them up to the engine yet as I still need parts like injectors and sensors etc.

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php/?i ... _open_user

The turbo itself is an ihi is12 turbo from a 1.8t mk7 golf gti, these are small turbos but capable of 250hp I was trying to keep it in the ihi family but use some modern turbo design it uses an electronic wastegate which fornme hits the spot given isuzu's originally attempted a form of electronic wastegate control on these cars and I was always impressed by that. It did however require cutting and welding a modified t2 flange on to the housing so well see how that goes. In al the other advantage was that the turbo complete with gate and bov was £50 because vw kids go from is12 to is38 (400hp is turbo) allnthe time and there are many low mileage spares around for sale. I'll let you know how it goes when it's all on, I dont expect big numbers but I'm hoping for a nice booth threshold and transient characteristics
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Piazza_man
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Re: My Piazza 2 - UK edition

Post by Piazza_man »

Yeah totally agree about the forum being a good central place to lay out your work in one place. I love being able to put down the finer details for the benefit of other members if interested.

Keep going with the progress updates and pics. You may need to consider an aftermarket ECU (or mega squirt setup etc) to make the most of your mods.

I’m interested to see how you’re going run your intake plumbing from the intercooler (presuming new intercooler too) to the forward-facing throttle body on the new plenum setup. I have a similar forward facing setup but haven’t gotten around to installing it.
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