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Old 07-01-2018, 07:45 PM   #85
John V
No more BMWs
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Carmudgeonly Ride: 987S, Ram, MS3, CX-5, RX-8
Location: Glenwood, MD
Posts: 12,943
Today was a day I was kind of dreading. It was to be ABS module relocation day. The location of the RX-8's ABS module (pump) is unfortunate. It's on the driver's side of the engine bay, next to the shock tower. The problem with that with a four-cylinder in the engine bay is the intake manifold wants to occupy the same space. So it had to move. The intake manifold is off in this picture because, well, it doesn't fit with the module there.

I had a couple choices. One, I could move it about three inches towards the shock tower but keep it in the same general area and orientation. Two, I could move it rearward (towards the firewall) and next to the master cylinder. First I marked all of the lines and pumped the brake fluid out of the system, then disconnected all of the lines. Then I re-installed the intake manifold to see what I had to work with.

I realized I had another problem. This intake manifold is designed for a Miata engine bay, and the Miata fuse box is much smaller than the RX-8s. The throttle body would be right where the fuse box is. You can see the black plastic top for the fuse box in this picture, in the lower right.

The intake manifold I picked up was really designed for a naturally-aspirated application, but it looked like a good, high flowing design for a turbo application, so I picked it up used from the prior owner. The manufacturer had problems with the runners cracking where they met the flange that bolts to the cylinder head, so for this particular manifold they cut the runners and mated them with silicone joiners (with a weld bead run around them so the hose clamps would have something to shoulder up against. This is kind of handy for me, because I could cut the runners a little more and move the manifold closer to the engine to gain more clearance. I'll have to TIG a bead around the runners again at some point, but I gained 1.5" of clearance to the fuse box, which should be good.

That problem solved, I started putting the ABS module in various places and orientations to see what would work best. It looked like option 1) made the most sense - I could re-bend each brake line to fit, then make a new bracket for the module. The two lines coming from the master cylinder were easy - I could remove them from the master cylinder and the ABS module, take them to the vise, straighten various bends and re-bend them around a 19mm socket without risk of kinking them. The rest of them were kind of a puzzle. Once I had the ABS module where I wanted it, I started mapping out where I wanted each line to go. I needed to reduce the height coming off the module and move all the lines closer to the shock tower so they wouldn't interfere with the plenum. I didn't take a ton of pics, just a couple of the final product. All the lines fit great and I can get the intake manifold on and off with no issue now.

Last task was to install the control arms and shocks. The lowers had spherical bearings installed by a guy who does that for a living. The uppers just got offset delrin bushings for more camber. The shocks are Penskes that I picked up for a song off of a Miata guy (valving is all wrong, but I got a guy for that). I put the brake rotors on and mounted up a couple of 315/30 Hoosiers to test fit those.

Pimpy spherical bearings. Yum.

Couldn't resist throwing the front fenders back on and seeing how it looks. Ride height is a few inches too high, but it still looks badass, I think!

Long day working in 90 degree heat, so I'm done for the day...
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