Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

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ariel_86
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August 2014 – Prepping for Paint

Postby ariel_86 » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:39 pm

As you can see from the pictures, Ariel was in desperate need of a makeover. Some fresh paint and a little bit of bodywork would change the look and feel of the car. I’m not one to typically get hung up about how a car looks, but I was tired of how crappy Ariel looked and the teasing and joking from everyone about how crappy it looks. My birthday was coming up and so is a local J-tin carshow a friend is hosting, so I put together a plan for a makeover.

First things first, the car had to be prepped. That meant sanding, something that wasn’t done when my dad painted it for me back in 2008. I felt confident that I could handle sanding the car, so I borrowed an orbital sander, bought a bunch of sand paper, and went to town. I did remove a lot of exterior bits first.

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First night of sanding using some 100 grit paper.
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Getting the OEM “GTS TwinCam 16” stickers off the door was very difficult.

Took off the front bumper and did some more sanding the next night.
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Took off the rear bumper and decided to tackle some rust spots in the trunk as well.
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I didn’t notice it immediately when I took off the rear bumper, but I did have a hole to deal with behind the rear bumper.
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At least it isn’t anyplace important, structurally, and is well hidden behind the bumper. And that is the worst area of rust on the whole car, surprisingly. Not too shabby, imho.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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September 4, 2014 – Masking & Primer

Postby ariel_86 » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:41 pm

After spending a week or two sanding the car, it was ready to be delivered to my dad to finish the prep work and paint it. Since I had done a large amount of the prep work I wasn’t worried about letting my dad paint it again. Plus, he agreed to buy the paint as a birthday present for me. My dad’s pretty awesome.

Bit of wet sanding after being masked.
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Primer sprayed and first shots of black for the door trim and bumper pieces!
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I wet sanded the whole car that evening and left my dad in charge of painting the car over the weekend. I was anxious to see how it would turn out but wouldn’t know for sure since I had to work all that weekend.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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September 9, 2014 – Painted!

Postby ariel_86 » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:44 pm

Even though I had committed to painting the car back in August, I hadn’t fully decided on a color scheme until I delivered the car to my dad. I went back and forth on a few ideas, but finally decided on Satin Black for the plastic pieces (front & rear bumpers and door moldings) and the original Bright Red the car was painted in 1985 (color code 3E6). Dad purchased a single-stage paint from a local supplier that was able to replicate the original color. Spray paint was used for the plastics and they turned out well.

Anyway, here are shots of the car. She’s so shiny!
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I am very pleased with this paint job! It isn’t perfect, far from it, but this is the best Ariel has looked the whole time we’ve been together. I’m so excited for the Salt City Tinner’s Meet & Car Show Saturday! I can’t wait to show it off! I’ve fallen in love with her all over again now that she’s shiny & pretty (gosh, that sounds so superficial!)! I’ll try to get pics of the other cars at the Tinner’s show.

I love how she looks on those Celica Supra wheels!!
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

Clouds
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby Clouds » Fri Sep 12, 2014 5:20 am

It looks so much better now! It's so shiny and red and red and shiny :lol:
There shouldn't be a day that goes by where you don't learn something new.

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TD86
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby TD86 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 9:06 pm

Wow! Congrats! :D
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ariel_86
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby ariel_86 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:27 pm

Clouds wrote:It looks so much better now! It's so shiny and red and red and shiny :lol:

I know, right?! :D
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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From the Salt City Tinner's Show

Postby ariel_86 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:00 pm

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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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September 23, 2014 – Sitting pretty

Postby ariel_86 » Sun Feb 01, 2015 5:01 pm

September 23, 2014 – Sitting pretty
A few days after the show and gathering dust, I can’t help but take a minute to stare at my car every time I pass by her. It’s like I’ve fallen in love with her all over again.

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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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December 25, 2014 – Christmas after moving

Postby ariel_86 » Sun Feb 01, 2015 5:01 pm

December 25, 2014 – Christmas after moving
So in December I moved from Kearns to Taylorsville. I lost my covered backyard parking but still had a spot on the side of the house for Ariel. With the light dusting of snow we received over Christmas, I couldn’t resist a quick pic.

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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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January 26, 2015 – Plans for ISS

Postby ariel_86 » Sun Feb 01, 2015 5:02 pm

January 26, 2015 – Plans for ISS
A few days ago, UtahHondas.net announced the return of their Import Spring Showoff in April, their annual car show & BBQ. What started as a Honda/Acura only meet 6 years ago had bloomed into the premier sport compact/import car show for Utah, welcoming all makes, models, and car enthusiasts.

With my fresh coat of paint and renewed love of the car, I decided to enter Ariel into the car show portion of ISS. If I wanted a chance at even getting noticed, I knew I needed to do something about the interior of the car. My racing seat & harness are a bit faded and well used, but I can’t afford a new seat and harness yet. The blue and maroon interior, cracked dash, and mismatched panels are something I can deal with. Since I want to turn this into a track car anyway, I figured I would finally strip it out for the show.

So almost everything came out.

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I will strip out the sound deadening, touch up some of the interior paint, redo some wiring, make up some new door panels, and refinish the dash. The dash will be the biggest job. It’s so cracked and ugly!

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I feel confident I can get it all done in the 2.5 months I have before the show, but it’s going to be a lot of work. The results will be worth it, though, no matter the outcome of the show.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

Clouds
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby Clouds » Mon Feb 02, 2015 9:34 am

Glad to see this build updated. It's one of my favorites because it's so grassroots. :D
There shouldn't be a day that goes by where you don't learn something new.

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ariel_86
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby ariel_86 » Mon Feb 02, 2015 10:45 pm

Thank you!
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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Grant
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby Grant » Tue Feb 03, 2015 4:56 am

Wow it looks like you have the same rust underneath the rear bumper that I do. If you look inside that fender I bet the entire pinch weld is rusted along the bottom...

I got a patch panel from Wolf Steel, but it only replaces the front panel, so I'll have to fabricate a replacement for the inside panel. Thankfully it's all covered by the rear bumper so if it looks like crap no one will notice. :lol:

Keep up the good work! :)

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ariel_86
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February 13, 2015 - Interior Progress!

Postby ariel_86 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:34 pm

February 13, 2015 - Interior Progress!
With most everything pulled out of the car, I first wanted to get an idea about how the original door panels looked and how they went together.

It wasn’t hard to pull them apart.
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One door done.
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Both door cards apart.
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I will use these as a template for the new door cards I plan on making. They won’t be contoured or have armrests like the factory ones. Just something simple.

Glad to be rid of these ugly, cracking plastic trays from the armrests.
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I also cleaned off the rest of the foam matting from the roof.
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Should be about ready to wipe it down with some goo gone or wax & grease remover.

I also started chipping out the sound deadening. I started on the passenger side. No dry ice, no hammer, no chisel, just a couple of flat head screwdrivers and 30 year old sound material.
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After posting that progress on FB, a friend has graciously loaned me some hammers and chisels to finish the job. The right tools make the job so much easier.
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After getting most of the passenger side done, I pulled out the driver seat to get to work on that side. This is the first time since I mounted the seat in the car that I’ve removed it. Kinda crazy.
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So much room for activities!
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I hope to finish chipping out the sound deadening within a week, then I will try to weigh all the pieces I can to see approximately how much weight I removed.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ryun84
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby ryun84 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:48 pm

Love the progress pics! Keep 'em coming!

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ariel_86
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Feb 17 - Removal Complete!

Postby ariel_86 » Wed Feb 18, 2015 7:52 pm

Another day off, another day spent with a chisel in hand!

This was the part I was most worried about. How much rust would I find in the floor or firewall? Luckily, it looks like most of it is surface rust that can be taken out with a wire wheel.
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Also, anyone have a clue about what that little rectangle hole is in the floor? It has a cover and there are identical ones on the passenger side and beneath the front seats. It's like they are a pocket for the frame rails? I dunno.

This area has me worried though...
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I also tried to weigh the interior I removed from the car, but my parents digital bathroom scale didn't want to cooperate, so I have no numbers at the moment. Honestly, I am guessing that I only removed 40 or 45 pounds by taking out all the trim, backseats, carpet, headliner, etc. I still want to weigh the chipped off sound deadening. I'll try to collect it all into a bag or bucket and weigh that sometime soon.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

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ariel_86
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teaser

Postby ariel_86 » Sun Mar 29, 2015 8:25 pm

Its been a while since I've updated this, but I'm making progress on the dash. I might put together a proper update soon.

Here's a little before/after teaser.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

Clouds
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby Clouds » Sun Mar 29, 2015 9:50 pm

What is that that you are using for the dash? Body filler?
There shouldn't be a day that goes by where you don't learn something new.

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ariel_86
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby ariel_86 » Mon Mar 30, 2015 9:12 am

I used expanding foam for all the deep cracks and body filler to fill in the little holes & imperfections.
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1985 Toyota Corolla Sport GTS - Ariel
105.5 whp 93.8 ft-lbs of torque

Clouds
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Re: Ariel's Story - A tale of a Utah Corolla

Postby Clouds » Mon Mar 30, 2015 6:22 pm

Alright, sweet.
There shouldn't be a day that goes by where you don't learn something new.

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