My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

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matthewramdeen1
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My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby matthewramdeen1 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:22 pm

** 56K BEWARE **
Hey Peeps

I'm new on this forum, I figured if I'm going to start a thread on my newly acquired 1993 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101. (At least, that's the code for 'em here in JDM markets, I see other people using that same code for the 4dr sedan version with the 4AFE). Then Club4AG seemed like the best community to settle down!

But I digress. I'm simply just looking for a place to put down my thoughts, log my progress, tell tales of my hits and misses and get some feedback from veterans in the 4AGE community. So mods, If I'm posting this thread in the wrong sub-forum or if this isn't the sort of thing you do at Club4AG, then my all means - just set me straight :geek:

So to Start off - here are the base specs of my car that I found on the net.... good to just keep it for reference https://www.carfolio.com/specifications/models/car/?car=263010.

It's a 1993 model, bought it with around 180,000+ KM on the clock. Bone stock 4-AGE 20V Silvertop with 5 spd C52 gearbox (Non-LSD). Got the dual exhaust which gives a nice sporty note. I'm dubbing this machine "Di Analys" - and if you're scratching you're head don't worry :D That's just our Jamaican dialect for saying "The Analyst". I figured instead of giving it the usual pet name, I'd let this car signify a milestone in my life - Got a new job as a Business Analyst (BA) pretty much the same time I bought this car. I'm stepping up from a 1996 Suzuki Swift 3cyl - so you can imagine the performance difference is night and day for me.

But enough of the wordy stuff. I like to tell my stories with pics. So my first tale will be about my firs major repair to the car.... And that was Changing the clutch.

Bout 2 weeks ago I got a little excited and tried to launch to make the gap in Traffic. Boyyyyyy was that ever the last I'd be doing that. HORRID GRIND trying to get into 2nd - clutch pedal sank to the floor - didn't want to come back up. I thought $#!@ - this is the day I screw up my pride and joy. :o Lo and Behold, I was able to get it moving again but the clutch went from streetable grab all the way down to slipping in 3rd gear. That was Monday - By the end of the week it was slipping so bad that I couldn't even get it past 3K RPM in 1st gear! Talk about a nightmare.

Now up to this point, I didn't have a dedicated mechanic. The location of my new job meant I couldn't just go round the block to my usual mech - So I needed to try something new! Tried searching the interwebs for mobile mechanics since I'd need the someone that can come to my location when I'm in a pinch. Finally boiled down to mechanics that advertised their work like this Image Or Like This....
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:D I think I know which of the two put some effort into their work. So I messaged Travis The Mobile Mechanic on facebook https://www.facebook.com/travisthemobilemechanic/ and we got to talking about what kind of jobs he's done and to take a first look at Di Analys initially scheduling him for August 11

Fast forward to slipping clutch week and BOOYYYYY did I have a trial by fire ready for Travis the Mobile Mechanic :lol: He actually came from the shop >>> to my home >>>> to help get the car back to the shop at Rodgers Tyre & Service Center in Portmore, right around here http://bit.do/euBmo

And so our journey begins

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Some way, some how. We managed to drive it on the slipping clutch about 21KM to the shop. Here's your first look at the car about to go on the lift

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Doubt the car even cooled off properly before Travis started on the case - unbolting bits and pieces from the top before we jacked it up

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And it's up! I swear it was like 30 mins between the time I pulled up, to the time the car got lifted - almost like they change clutches for a living :P

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Impact wrench makes quick work of the plastic undertrays and many other bolts for the various supports under the car. When all was said and done, we found some wet spots under the car - explains why I gotta top up with 10W40 a couple times and top up Power Steering Fluid. But right now that is the least of my concerns

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And there it is, Gearbox is off. Old Pressure plate exposed and ready to go

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There's the culprit. Whatever I did with that launch COMPLETELY DISINTEGRATED one side of the clutch disc. I was holding on by the rivets for God's sake. The bellhousing was completely filthy - shredded organic material and oil everywhere.

Image Image Image
First thing's first, we realized the rear crankcase seal was leaking into the bellhousing. By some stroke of luck, the nearby auto parts shop had one. So we replaced it straight away. The old one was as stiff as a piece of styrofoam!

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Blasted the bellhousing innards with a pressure washer to get all the gunk out. And then set it on its side to drain oil the old gear oil.

So here's the part where I show you all the new shiny bits that I'm gonna replace.
  1. Most important is the clutch kit. Its an Ebay Stage 3 Clutch Kit https://ebay.to/2KH2zCv Comes complete with Stage 3 Clutch, Pressure Plate, 200MM Lightweight Chromoly 10lb Flywheel and Throw Out Bearing.
    Image
  2. Next up is the ARP Flywheel Bolts - also bought it off Ebay https://ebay.to/2MyCkjp Comes with 8 bolts and the assembly lube. They can take 58 ftlbs compared to stock 54 ftlbs AND they're re-usable.
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  3. Also needed about 4 quarts of 75W90 Gear Oil. Most of the Auto Parts stores had 80W90 and the only 75W90 was Amsoil - really Expensive $#!@ Dangit! had to bite the bullet and buy 4 quarts of the Amsoil Synthetic. looks like this http://bit.do/eubEj
    Image

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I bought a small tube of thread locker but mech opted for the Assembly Lube instead. ARP bolts lubed up. Bolted in the new 4.7KG (10lb) flywheel down to 58 ftlbs. For reference, here's a neat site comparing the 20V flywheel weights http://www.my-acoustic.com/Car/weight_issues/compare_20v_flywheel_weight/compare_20v_flywheels_weight.htm. Then bolted in the Stage 3, 6-puck clutch and blue pressure plate. Sorry I didn't take more pics at this point, as you can see - it was starting to get late.

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A fair bit of elbow grease and some helping hands Travis got the gearbox back in place and wasted no time putting together all the pieces. It was like 4:30PM when we reached the shop - And by the time it was all done it was about 9:30PM. Dunno how many mechs in the states stay in the shop till those times, but I'm glad I had Travis in my corner. Damn good labour price too if I may say so myself.

I'm writing this about 1 week later from the install date and all I can say is, don't let people on the internet scare you from lightweight flywheels and Stage 3 clutch setups. The thing is entirely streetable, no chattering, you can still slip the clutch, and the RPM movement up or down isn't as dramatic as some make it sound. I'm about 100KM into my 1000KM break-in period and the level of rebound coming from the pressure plate is the only thing to get used to.

Phew! :D That took longer than I thought.
Last edited by matthewramdeen1 on Wed Aug 15, 2018 5:59 pm, edited 7 times in total.
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matthewramdeen1
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Re: My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby matthewramdeen1 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:03 pm

But wait..... There's more

So that Clutch job was on a Saturday. On Sunday I realize my cooling system couldn't keep in water - had a severe leak at the Radiator inlet for the top tank. I patched a previous crack at with some epoxy in the same area and figured I could jerry-rig something. Fast-forward to half a tube of epoxy and 1" OD PVC coupling later and I was in a bit of a pickle. Nothing I tried could keep water in the system. :shock: After all that Clutch work - I had to park my car on a beautiful Sunday.

Monday was a public Holiday - by now I'm sweating bullets. How the hell am I going to fix this thing before work tomorrow??!! Basically all business places were closed. My bro pulled up in his 3SGTE 4WD Corona and said I should try calling some places in the yellow pages that fix radiators.
  1. First Call - No Answer
  2. Second Call - No Answer
  3. Third Call - Radiator Lee answered the phone!! Told him my life story with the radiator woes and he said bring it quick before 1PM - he's not staying at the shop on a Public Holiday

To this day I hadn't troubled anything in the engine bay - And there I was unbolting sockets and hose clamps to get the Radiator out. My bro showed me the ropes since he's done this sorta thing on his Corona a couple of times. By 10AM radiator was out and made a straight shot for Radiator Lee's place.

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If you're in Jamaica - this guy can get you out of some major scrapes at odd hours with your Radiator problems

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As you can see, the entire top plastic tank was dry rotted beyond repair. Amazing how I got by this long. A bit too much shaking of the engine during the clutch job was enough to break the tank inlet right off. Radiator Lee wasted no time prying off the tabs with his trusty flathead screwdriver.

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While the top was off, he also rodded out the tubes - it's amazing how much gunk and slime he got out of the thing. Then he found the right top tank for my application - made sure it had the deep neck that fits my radiator cap. A bit of silicone and some elbow grease and Voila! It's done. Gave it a little pressure test on the bench and it held up well! Carried it back home and reversed the steps to get it back in my Levin.

That was Monday - I'm writing this on Thursday and the tank is holding up well still.
I was worried I'd have to move up the timeline on getting one of those double core aluminum radiators. But Alas! The stock radiator lives to fight another day. I can put off that upgrade for a while.

Took the time to also try out some new LED bulbs I ordered same time as the clutch kit.
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The brass ones are the 1156 Single contact bulbs that work for Reverse and Turn signal. The chrome ones are 1157 Double Contact that work with your Hi/Lo Brake lights and Front Park Lights. The difference in brightness is obvious. Only downside is now I need a load resistor to fix the hyperflash caused by the LED bulbs

OK, that should be it for the first round of repairs. My next big work is fixing some leaks and front end bits. I'm also eyeballing some more stuff I want to buy off Ebay and install. I suppose I can make another post with a roadmap of upgrades I want to make. No crazy swaps or conversions - just some good upgrades that anyone can appreciate.

That's all for today! Cheers!
Last edited by matthewramdeen1 on Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby jondee86 » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:58 pm

Welcome aboard Matthew :) Sure wish I lived somewhere that you could get
a radiator fixed on a public holiday, and workshops stayed open until the job
was done. Hope you bought those guys a cold drink when they were done :)

Glad you explained how you came to name your car. I read "dialysis" at first
glance and thought that's a strange name for a car :D

Cheers... jondee86
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Re: My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby matthewramdeen1 » Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:45 am

jondee86 wrote:Welcome aboard Matthew :) Sure wish I lived somewhere that you could get
a radiator fixed on a public holiday, and workshops stayed open until the job
was done. Hope you bought those guys a cold drink when they were done :)

Glad you explained how you came to name your car. I read "dialysis" at first
glance and thought that's a strange name for a car :D

Cheers... jondee86


Thanks for the hospitality! Trust me, when your back is against the wall.... you pull out all the stops to make something happen. Didn't get to buy Radiator Lee a drink... but he did charge me a fair price for the tank and the labour - I was all in for JMD$6500 - which in USA terms works out to around USD$50.

Since I'm here typing.... might as well make my next update to the thread. This time - I'll just lay out the Roadmap for the build

Now As I mentioned before, I'm not trying to do anything crazy with Di Analys. So no swaps, no forced induction - really tryna just elevate the visceral feel, response and feedback with this platform. At the end of it, the mod list should be stuff that any future owner of the car could appreciate. Ideally, no mod should make the car worse than stock - and that's my goal!

For now I'll just make this a simple list of mods - If anything I can treat this like a sticky post and come back to it when I cange my mind on some items.
So here goes (In no particular order)

  1. Relocate Battery to the Trunk
    I actually did this with my Suzuki Swift. I was looking online at Taylor, Moroso and Allstar Battery boxes and trays and wasn't finding one that would match well with the batteries they sell here in Jamaica. I might go the same route as last time and have my fabricator guy make a custom steel box that I can bolt up to the chassis - It'll have foam padding keeping the battery in place and a vent tube for the acid fumes. I'll put it in the rear passenger side of the trunk to balance out my weight. From my experience, shifting the weight helps with the turn-in; but on the longer corners you may notice you don't have the weight to keep the wheels planted.
  2. Custom Air Box and Cold Air Intake
    I can only do this mod AFTER moving the battery to the trunk. I'll use that space to section off the cavity left from the battery for my cone air filter. I'll need my fabricator guy again to make something custom to fit the size filter I want. Also need him to build in a support for the factory Air Flow Meter. I'll pair it with a universal cold air intake kit to delete the flimsy rubber hose that clamps on to the intake plenum.
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  3. Lightweight Flywheel and Stage 3 Clutch DONE!
    Well this mod came ahead of schedule. Its a 4.7KG (10lb) flywheel.Only thing I see lighter than this is a 4.4KG Toda Racing flywheel for USD$300+ While this whole kit came with flywheel + clutch + pressure plate for USD$259. Very streetable - definite upgrade from stock Organic clutch. And I don't think I'll get anywhere near pushing the limits of the clutch. If it goes bust, I'll be the first to eat my words of my praise for the Ebay kit. :lol:
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  4. Lightweight Crank Pulley
    Taking the lightweight, rev-happy theme from the flywheel upgrade and taking it one step further. Only recently did I see NonStop Tuning Pulley kit in the classifieds section of the forum. But I've been eyeballing an Arospeed T6061 Aluminum Pulley for a while now.Want to put more control of the rev range under my right foot - making it easier to get it into VVTI when I need it for the overtake 8-)
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  5. Double Core Aluminum Radiator
    After the Radiator Lee episode - I can safely put off this mod for later down in Di Analys timeline. It will come in handy especially when tackling our new Jamaican Highways where I'll need to keep the 4AGE in the high RPM bands to keep up with traffic while going uphill for extended periods. Saw the radiator for this engine on Ebay for Around USD$145. I'd pair it up with 2 slim radiator fans and stainless radiator hose to make the entire cooling system bulletproof
  6. 320MM Steering Wheel
    I bought this car with a chipped and cracked 360MM aftermarket steering wheel. Besides it being an eyesore - It's much too big my handling and i sometimes hit my legs with big steering inputs. I want to take the size down to 320MM which suits my style and makes for faster steering inputs. I've been eyeballing an OMP Trecento steering wheel for a while now for USD$69 on Ebay. Hope I can make it happen
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  7. 4x100 15X8" Wheels with Kumho Ecsta Tires
    Currently have on a set of 16x7" wheels wrapped in Westlake tires :oops: Haven't found a ditch in them yet, but I can assure you they'll be gone by the time I get to endgame with Di Analys. I want to go with 8" wide wheels with 0 offset and wrap 'em in 225 tires. Looking for that aggressive stance.
  8. Spark Plug Cables
    Of course, yes I know going aftermarket Spark Plug wires isn't going to provide any performance boost, neither will I ever exceed the capacity of a set of OEM plug wires. But I like the look of coloured Plug wires, and 10MM worth of wire + insulation feels like a lot of peace of mind. Should outlast the car and set me up for any possible ignition mods I could dream of.
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  9. Triple A-Pillar Gauges: Oil Pressure, Oil Temperature & Wideband Air/Fuel
    The Levin already comes iwth a voltmeters so don't need that. But I would love to see some gauges that could indicates the health of the engine, possibly giving me a chance to pick up something going whrong before it goes horridly wrong. After a lot of research, the best 3 gauges for an A'pillar gauge pod would be: (1) Oil Pressure (2) Oil Temperature and (2) Wideband Air Fuel. In terms of the brand, I'm familiar with Glowshift, AEM, Defi, Prosport, PLX Multigauges, etc. But the one I like best is MaxTow - Yes they are marketed for Diesel Trucks - Yes they are a line under the Glowshift Brand. But I like the dual digital + analog display which I wasn't seeing across the other brands for a reasonable price. Looks like these.
    Image Image Image
  10. Tire Pressure Monitoring System
    Another one for monitoring the car health, in particular tire health. I once found myself with a slow leak which topping up with air could only get me so far. Found out it was a screw wedged in the tire, ended up getting it plugged. I'd prefer to stop eyeballing and guessing if my tire can make it through the day and simply look at my gauge and have the facts. I like this kit from Orange Electronics - comes with internal sensors and not those silly sensor caps that can go missing with sticky fingers. Looks like this
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  11. Stainless 4-2-1 Exhaust Headers
    This would be more of an endgame mod - If I see myself still having Di Analys after a couple of years - I can try getting more performance oriented mods. Such as this 4-2-1 Exhaust manifold - Notice I didn't say 4-1 header, I'm looking for more low - mid end power to keep it peppy in the day-to-day traffic. After 4K RPM I'll just let the VVT-i do its thing and let me climp up through the RPM range.
    Image
  12. Coilover Suspension
    Again - endgame level stuff. The amount of money to bring in a set of coilovers into my country would make it more like an investment, not a bolt-on mod. I'll keep looking if there's a reasonably priced Lowering Spring + Shock Combo out there. I'll need something with enough height and dampening adjustability for our Jamaican roads
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  13. Greddy Emanage Ultimate Piggyback ECU
    Did I say endgame already? :lol: Just in case - endgame level stuff. Not looking to get into the high price point of standalone Engine Management. I've been seeing that this unit as close as you can get to standalone features from a piggyback. If I was looking to optimize my powerband - this would be the way.
    Image
  14. Pertronix Second Strike Ignition Box + Flame-Thrower HV Ignition Coil
    Once again for good measure - endgame. Combining this with my flywheel and pulley would really give the a punchiness to the engine response with my right foot.A set of iridium plugs and 10MM plug wires would give it the reliability factor for peace of mind.
    Image Image

So that's where my head is at with the mods list. As time progresses, as I learn more, as priorities shift - of course I can expect this list may change. And I may have a nice chuckle looking back in this thread and say "What the hell was I thinking in 2018??!!" :D
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Re: My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby Jayrdee » Tue Aug 14, 2018 5:40 pm

Threads like this are what make the internet so f*cking cool. I always find it interesting to read the build threads of those from different parts of the globe.

Welcome to the forum! Definitely looking forward to seeing your progress!
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Re: My '93 Toyota Corolla Levin AE101 "Di Analys"

Postby matthewramdeen1 » Tue Aug 14, 2018 7:45 pm

Jayrdee wrote:Threads like this are what make the internet so f*cking cool. I always find it interesting to read the build threads of those from different parts of the globe.

Welcome to the forum! Definitely looking forward to seeing your progress!


Thanks man. The Tuner scene here in Jamaica is check full of 90's FWD Toyota, Honda and Nissan goodness.
Followed by the Subaru and Evo AWD scene.
And even more rare here is the RWD scene.

Truth be told, I first came on here and it seemed everybody and their grandma had an AE86 story to tell :lol: :D Didn't know if my little 'ol AE101 FWD corolla story would get any traction. But this is Club 4AG afterall - there's no 4AGE story too small for the community. ;)

By the way, for anyone with a C52 gearbox with their 4AGE 20V, take note. If you have the dreaded 2nd Gear Grind there are some things you can do to remedy tour situation, short of buying a gearbox rebuild kit and taking it to a transmission specialist
  1. Change your Gear Oil - 75W90 is what you need. 80W90 will be too thick on startup. If you can get synthetic - go for that too. Anywhere between 3 - 4 quarts depending on how far back you can tilt the front of your car to fill the box
  2. Adjust the clutch slave cylinder rod - so that it extends more on the pressure plate and takes more pressure off the clutch disc. Even though you press the clutch, it may be a case where you aren't getting 100% disengagement - and 2nd gear doesn't like that.
  3. SINK THAT CLUTCH ALL THE WAY - especially going into second, don't try to shift casually, make a concerted effort to sink that clutch or try to do a double clutch before engaging

I'm on 200KM into my new clutch, and by taking these measures in my daily drive, I forgot about the 2nd gear grind. Heck - I even shifted into 2nd after loading up 6K RPM in 1st gear and no grind!
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