Since the Laser is running again, the Eclipse has finally made it's way back into the garage. Some fun things I've noticed already: first, the brake rotors are now so corroded that the car is practically impossible to move. Second, the rear hatch struts are completely shot; one isn't strong enough to hold anything, and the other is seized. Third, I forgot just how much work I have left to do on this damn thing.
So, today's progress: the front bumper is back off the car, and I hacked out the old rubber bushings and sleeves from the engine mounts and replaced them with polyurethane replacements. A tip for those doing this: if you can hack out the center of the old rubber bearing somehow (press it out, torch it, etc), it's pretty easy to cut the bearing sleeve out with a hacksaw (assemble the hacksaw with the blade on the inside of the mount, and you have plenty of range-of-motion). Also, lubricate the hell out of the new bearings, and they'll pop right in.
Next up: I have a plan for redoing the fuel system such that I have a working OEM-style return setup. Basically, I'm going to drill out the original hard lines in the sending unit that fed the feed and return lines, and replace them with a couple of bulkhead fittings. For the return fitting, I'm going to attach an AN cap to the end of the bulkhead fitting, with a hole drilled in the middle to allow some, but not all, of the fuel to return there. Outside the tank, the bulkhead fitting will connect to a tee that runs a line to the other saddlebag as well, and I'll do the same thing over there, but without the drilled cap. I'll need to experiment a bit with hole sizes to see what it'll take to equalize the flow between the two sides of the tank, but I think this will work nicely. The end goal is a -8AN feed line (fed by a Denso "Supra" pump), and a -6AN return line that works like stock. The factory had a good reason for setting it up this way, and I intend to keep it like that until I go to a fuel cell.
Also on the to-do list: mock up the monsterously huge/cool front-mount intercooler, and trim the front fascia for it. I also need to work out the power steering and oil cooler mounting locations and line routing, as well as decide where the oil accumulator is going to go; if it goes where the battery currently lives, I'll need to pick up a battery box and rear shutoff switch, and rewire the battery in the trunk. I also need to pick up a scattershield before the tranny goes back on.
Oh, and wiring. Tons of goddamn wiring. :-P I have two gauges (a Steward-Warner 30inHg/40psi boost gauge and an AEM wideband O2 sensor) to wire up, and I still need to track down a bezel for them. I also need to get the HKS EVC EZ-II boost controller on the bench and see if I can read the boost output from it; if I can, I should be able to get it working as a loggable boost metering source for DSMLink. If I can't, I'll need to pick up a 3.3 or 4-bar map sensor for logging as well. I can't wait to see how much custom wiring I'm going to end up doing once the engine is here.
Oh yeah, a quick update on the engine. It's currently in someone else's car. ;-) Greg Collier, the winner of NASA's Super Unlimited class for the last two years running, was going to have Mitch build his engine, but there was a small problem: he needed it in about three weeks, which is a crazy turnaround time given that Mitch didn't have a spare 2.4L core lying around that was already align honed and prepped. So, he asked if he could use the block he'd already prepped for me; Greg's a cool guy, and would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it, so it's not like I could say no. Greg also got screwed on getting his turbo wastegate, so I shipped him mine while he placed an order for a replacement one to be shipped directly to me when they finally get back in stock. Long story short, Greg's up and running with the new engine and wastegate; he's going to be running at Mid-Ohio in September for the NASA Championships, so I think a few of us are going to head out for the weekend to see him win a few races. :-)
Anyway, I should have an engine in my hands in a week or two at this point; there's just a couple of minor things holding it up (specifically, there appears to be a minor quality control problem with the connecting rods that we were planning on going with; if that doesn't get cleared up properly, we'll probably end up going with another brand), and we're waiting on a new set of custom pistons (since Greg has mine).
Whew, long update. But, that's where things are at with "Project Cash Money DSM" (as Kris has started calling it), in case anyone reading this was curious. Ugh, I don't think I even want to see what the pricetag on this whole thing is going to end up being...