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4.3L-swapped RX7 project

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Old 03-06-2013, 11:30 PM   #1
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4.3L-swapped RX7 project

With my truck as a daily, I decided I needed a project to tinker with. I picked up this '85 Mazda RX7 GSL. Originally it had a carbed 12A making about 100hp. It has factory LSD and disc brakes which is nice. Factory curb weight was around 2350lbs. The rotary was swapped for a Chevy 4.3L V6 pulled from a '93 boat. The motor has an Edelbrock intake and 600 carb. Transmission is a T5 from a Camaro I believe. The exhaust consisted of long tube headers into a single 2.5" with a Thrush muffler. The battery is relocated to the rear. The previous owner who did the swap kinda hacked some of it together as you can see in the pics below.

Pics after first buying it. Nothing major. I replaced a missing side molding piece and a broken turn signal lens. The center dash piece was cracked so I replaced that, still missing the vent dials though. Threw in some cheap floor mats too. I also bought some new tires for it since they were cheap.







Engine pic:



A list of things that were wrong with the swap:

Useless AC and power steering bracket



Remote oil filter setup, lines touched the header and leaked very bad



Starter making direct contact with the header



Kinked lower radiator hose



Was missing the lower pan, which I didn't realize until I noticed an RX7 at the junkyard had one.

Old 03-06-2013, 11:31 PM   #2
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

So on jackstands it went to try to address these problems.

Off came the AC/PS bracket



Painted the upper radiator piece





Wrapped a little bit of the passenger side header. Not the world's greatest job by far but better than no wrap at all.



Painted the lower pan



Used a cut up hose for a later 70s Bronco that worked much better than the old hose



Mounted an idler pulley where the stock one should go. This also eliminated the issue of the belt touching the upper radiator hose.



Installed a regular in block oil filter. Plenty of clearence and no leaks.



Threw some blue plug wires on, along with new plugs. One of the old ones was mismatched



New mini starter



Replaced the Thrush muffler with a Magnaflow.



For some odd reason, the PO put a PCV valve in each valve cover. I eliminated one and put a breather on it.



And how the engine looks now:



It's a work in progress. I'm getting rid of the blue loom very soon. Later on I plan on swapping the heads for some Vortecs a 2114 manifold. The mini starter still touches the header as does part of the tie rod when turning. I'm thinking about ditching the headers for maybe some manifolds. On the driver's side I had to take off the header just to remove the #3 spark plug wire! A few other things I need to do are hook up the oil pressure and temp gauges. Once its running good it needs an alignment, then I'll buy some 15" wheels and possibly lower it.
Old 03-06-2013, 11:44 PM   #3
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

my swapped rx-7 project
http://wichita.craigslist.org/cto/3660661721.html
Old 03-07-2013, 12:21 AM   #4
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

if you ditch headers, how much for them
Old 03-08-2013, 12:56 AM   #5
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

Not sure yet, I'll let you know when they're off the car.
Old 03-08-2013, 04:48 PM   #6
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

Any vids of this?
Old 03-09-2013, 01:45 PM   #7
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

My buddy has an '85. These things are loads of fun to work on
Old 03-09-2013, 03:07 PM   #8
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

i bet this thing is fast as hell.
Old 03-12-2013, 12:50 AM   #9
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

Quote: Originally Posted by mattmac2007
Any vids of this?
Old 03-12-2013, 12:52 AM   #10
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

Over the weekend I changed out the blue valve covers for some non painted covers. I'll be changing the blue wire loom pretty soon.

Old 03-19-2013, 06:28 PM   #11
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

No more blue loom

Old 03-19-2013, 07:08 PM   #12
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

just by removing everything blue, it looks so much less hacked
Old 03-19-2013, 07:10 PM   #13
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

Looks nice.
Old 03-20-2013, 09:09 AM   #14
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Re: 4.3L-swapped RX7 project

this thing is pretty awesome man
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