Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

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AugustusFerdinand
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My tercel:: 1983 Toyota Tercel SR5

Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

So about 18 months ago I picked up a running, driving, small rust spots on the outside, but immaculate interior, white SR5 with about 300k on the clock for the low low price of "come pick it up and it's yours." Between picking it up and when it was parked, I sold off a couple of commuter cars that I had around and drove this daily for about 5 months. That's when the poor little 3AC gave up the ghost on the way home one hot Texas summer day, spewing oil everywhere; it still leaks in my driveway just sitting there. Got me home though, I just know the internals are just not going to be in good shape after that and it was destined for more. In the 5 months I was driving it I even found a pristine condition and untouched Suzuki Swift in a junkyard to pull the TBI setup, computers, harness, etc. off of for a carb-to-TBI conversion (will be tossing that up for sale in the parts section for anyone that wants it along with whatever I don't need when the 3AC is pulled out), but alas it was not meant to be. On to bigger/torque-y-er things!

I have been planning (as I'm an epic note/spreadsheet keeper; a requirement with the number of projects I'm constantly juggling) on upgrades and the like since the idea to pick up a T4WD (a whole other ordeal that led me to this one) popped into my head. Have been creeping here, bookmarking posts with good info, and bit by bit acquiring parts and ideas as plans can get much bigger when the car is already in a non-running condition.

So with less rambling (no guarantees) and more lists, here's the major points of the plan:
  1. 7AFE shortblock
    170k mile 7AFE arrived yesterday and is next to be torn down to ready it for rebuild. Will of course involve the drivetrain drop to clear the hood as I don't want to cut a hole or do other mods that I don't think will blend well. I've seen multiple threads referencing the drivetrain drop, but haven't seen anyone that's actually done it yet, so if you know of the threads that actually reference doing the drop, I'll gladly take the links and thank you immensely. Will also be addressing the oil pan clearance issue which I've seen referenced, may just have to make a sheet metal oil pan to clear everything if I can't find anything off the shelf from another Toyota engine. Will take pictures of the two engine pans side by side for measurements and reference for others (I plan to do so all the way through the project).
  2. 4AGE head
    Picked up a complete bigport 4AGE head off an AW11 MR2 for $75 from a guy I stalked at a donut shop (long story). One extra plus for this is that the distributor is on the driver's side front, so no firewall clearancing required to get the engine in the Tercel. If the TVIS fits well and I can figure out an easy way to control it, I'll keep it; otherwise I'll deal with the drop in low-end torque by getting rid of it. Might just keep it off entirely as this is just meant to be a fun car to drive around and play in the dirt on family/friend's land. I'm aware that I'm doubling the power and torque going through our hen's teeth transmissions and any little bit of relief will help as I intend to baby the transmission as much as possible.
  3. 4AGE smallport (SP) pistons, 4AGE head gasket
    With the 4A head on the 7A block compression need might need to be addressed. From what I've found 3AC is 9.0:1, 4AGE bigport (BP) is 9.4:1, 7AFE is 9.5:1. Running numbers I've found online options are as follows:
    7A pistons, 7A head gasket - 9.04:1
    7A pistons, 4A head gasket- 8.67:1
    4A SP pistons, 7A head gasket - 11.67:1 (or 11.3:1)
    4A SP pistons, 4A head gasket - 11.02:1 (or 10.6:1)
    Thoughts on this is that if I'm having to rebuild the engine, might as well go ahead and get a little bump in response and power out of it while I'm at it. Since 4A SP pistons share the same wrist pin diameter as 7A pistons, they're a direct swap. The parentheses are there as the first number is my math based on what I've found online for all the measurements of the 7A and 4A, the second is the compression ratio provided by AE86 guys and what they use as their reference for these, original author unknown. Of course if my numbers are wrong, then they're all high and the 9.0:1 7A/7A setup is actually 8.6:1 and lower than I'm willing to go, so I'm thinking I'll err on the side of caution and just use 4A SP pistons and gasket to not have to worry about it at all. Buying super unleaded doesn't bother me.
    9.0:1 is acceptable, 11.0/10.6:1 is also acceptable, so those are the two directions I'm looking and will decide later after more research.
  4. Speeduino ECU
    Had a couple of these made for me by a coworker, one for the Tercel and one for my buddy's D21 that'll be getting an engine swap soon, nice little bit of kit and will be just the ticket for this build. First time using a Speedunio, but not my first time tuning a standalone so just a matter of adapting to its quirks and getting it done. Thankfully on a non-performance, non-forced induction, non-racing application like this the wiring and setup is very simple. Also the circuit board for mine is in that older style yellow/orange/brown color that will more closely match the interior with the clear case I'll make for it to mount in the glove box.
  5. Modest Lift
    The ever present item mentioned by all. Enough lift to put some chunky rubber underneath it, but not enough to make buying new axles a grocery list item.
  6. Enkei EK81 14" wheels
    Also picked these beautiful period correct wheels up from the AW11 guy for $175.
  7. POR-15
    Tercel has a few rust spots on the body, these will be addressed, corrected, and protected. I don't intend to have less and less car every time I go outside.
  8. Brake upgrade
    Recently came across this link and will also be upgrading stopping power as it's been a concern of mine since I started looking to upgrade things. Brakes are usually the first item I improve on my performance oriented projects. They aren't exciting to most, but it keeps the car together and helps to get you home each night. The larger brakes should fit under my new wheels and I'll decide what I'll do for the rear as I won't be upgrading to 15" wheels and I don't know if that user took braking force balance into account.
  9. Maintenance, reliability, longevity, fabrication
    Every gasket, bushing, bearing, sleeve, etc. that I can find will be replaced. Every one that I can't find that needs replacement will be fabricated. Of course will be fabbing headers, full exhaust, skid plate, and anything else that comes along. Not sure if I'll make my own aluminum radiator or hire that out. I already have a lot of parts as I prepped to get this project going, but won't bore y'all any further with every little minute item. MT-90 in the transmission, but I still need to research what's best for our cars for the rear diff oil (suggestions/links?).
  10. Cosmetics
    Getting it running well is first priority, after that I'll go for aesthetics. Current plan is to fab some plate bumpers front and rear, spare tire holder on back bumper, white bed liner paint job, Truck-lite LED headlights (already have these, just not installed), possibility of LED light bar or older style round spotlights on roof rack(undecided), possibility of period correct/inspired vinyl (I have a vinyl cutting/sign/sticker business), possibility of fender mirrors, and green mudflaps because I just want some green mudguards for some reason (will probably 3D print these).
I... I think that'll do for now.
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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Petros
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My tercel:: '84 Tercel4wd w/extensive mods
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by Petros »

sounds like a great way to up grade the Tecel4wd.

what you are building is called a "7AGE" over on the 4age forum, you have to use a different timing belt and a few other minor parts to get it all to work together. you can also cut down the 4age flywheel so you can put on the Tercel ring gear, so it will mate with the trans, and you get a larger clutch to fit on the 4age flywheel than came stock in the Tercel.

you may get higher compression ratio than you think, the 4age had less displacement pushed into the combustion chamber than the 7AFE. best is to measure your head clearance column. I do not think I would run 11 or more to one with pump gas, it could damage the head gasket in short order. you can clearance the combustion chamber in the head to bring the CR down. I did that with my 4ac swap after I over-boared it (overboring will also raise the CR, more volume displaced in the the same combustion chamber space).

is your EMC very costly? is it easier to rig than just using a factory ECM from a wrecking yard? I would be interested to know.

for high torque at lower rpm, even the stock 4age cams are hot, you can install adjustable cam sprockets and lower the peak rpm, and raise the low end torque, by retarding the intake cam, and advancing the exhaust cam timing with the adjustable sprockets. I looked into years ago, no one makes a low rpm/high torque cam set for the 4age. but the adjustable cam sprockets are less costly, and allow for fine tuning peak hp vs. rpm vs torque.

make sure you post pictures. Good luck!
'87 Tercel 4wd SR5 (current engine swap project)
'84 Tercel 4wd (daily driver, with on going mods)
'92 Mazda MPV 4wd (wife's daily driver)
'85 Tercel 4wd DLX auto(daughter's daily driver)
'01 Honda Civic (other daughter's daily driver)
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AugustusFerdinand
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My tercel:: 1983 Toyota Tercel SR5

Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

Petros wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:06 pm sounds like a great way to up grade the Tecel4wd.

what you are building is called a "7AGE" over on the 4age forum, you have to use a different timing belt and a few other minor parts to get it all to work together. you can also cut down the 4age flywheel so you can put on the Tercel ring gear, so it will mate with the trans, and you get a larger clutch to fit on the 4age flywheel than came stock in the Tercel.
Correct, and is why I put 7AGE in the title. :D

There's a couple of timing belt options depending on which oil pump I want to run, but since this won't be a high rpm drift car, I'll stick with the 7AFE oil pump and run the Porsche 944 117T timing belt and a rebroached crank gear. You can technically get away with it by just adjusting it with a set of adjustable timing gears, but you'll always have to account for it in the future and it's honestly just going to make you make a mistake down the line. So I'll do it right the first time and just get the rebroached gear. There's no need to cut down or even use a 4AGE flywheel as the 3A and 7A use the same six bolt flywheel pattern and I can just move the 3A flywheel over.
Petros wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:06 pm you may get higher compression ratio than you think, the 4age had less displacement pushed into the combustion chamber than the 7AFE. best is to measure your head clearance column. I do not think I would run 11 or more to one with pump gas, it could damage the head gasket in short order. you can clearance the combustion chamber in the head to bring the CR down. I did that with my 4ac swap after I over-boared it (overboring will also raise the CR, more volume displaced in the the same combustion chamber space).
The math works out so that my numbers are the high end and the AE86 guys are the lower end. 11:1 isn't all that bad and I won't be running timing on the edge in order to max out NA power. Detonation is the only thing that would damage the head gasket and I won't be that aggressive with the timing. While Toyota obviously was using knock sensors (not out of the realm of possibility here either), the latest gen Celica was running 11.5:1 from the factory.
Petros wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:06 pm is your EMC very costly? is it easier to rig than just using a factory ECM from a wrecking yard? I would be interested to know.
Costly? Nope. The beauty of being stripped down, megasquirt based, open source, and DIY means it only runs about $200 to have the ECU ready for your engine. Not bad for a little setup that's built for 4 cylinder sequential EFI and spark.

It might be easier to rig a junkyard ECU in the sense of you don't have to tune the fuel/spark tables yourself, but it'll never be as good as using a standalone ECU like this. Wiring will be more complicated with the junkyard ECU as well. The Speeduino is designed to use only the sensors that are really needed, no MAF for example. It can be daunting if you haven't done tuning or created maps from scratch before, but I've crossed that bridge many times already.
Petros wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:06 pm for high torque at lower rpm, even the stock 4age cams are hot, you can install adjustable cam sprockets and lower the peak rpm, and raise the low end torque, by retarding the intake cam, and advancing the exhaust cam timing with the adjustable sprockets. I looked into years ago, no one makes a low rpm/high torque cam set for the 4age. but the adjustable cam sprockets are less costly, and allow for fine tuning peak hp vs. rpm vs torque.

make sure you post pictures. Good luck!
Yep, all on the table, but unlikely to be used as a normal 7AGE with stock components puts out more torque at 3kRPM than the 3AC does at peak and the 7AGE will keep gaining power until about 7k. Keep the transmission in one piece and having fun are the primary motivations. I'll worry about making maximum power/torque if this somehow proves not to be enough and/or I pop the transmission.

Pictures are forthcoming and will be plentiful!
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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LowBuckCanuck
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My tercel:: 1986 DLX 4wd Wagon "Jenny"

Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by LowBuckCanuck »

Very interested in where this project goes!

Lifting information can be found here:

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=13106
teranfirbt
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My tercel:: '86 SR5 4WD, 5AFE, lifted rear, 195/70/14 tires
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by teranfirbt »

AugustusFerdinand wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:32 pm [*]Brake upgrade
Recently came across this link and will also be upgrading stopping power as it's been a concern of mine since I started looking to upgrade things. Brakes are usually the first item I improve on my performance oriented projects. They aren't exciting to most, but it keeps the car together and helps to get you home each night. The larger brakes should fit under my new wheels and I'll decide what I'll do for the rear as I won't be upgrading to 15" wheels and I don't know if that user took braking force balance into account.
I didn't and it's kinda garbage, way too much front, but Toyota was always super conservative with their brake proportioning :roll:
I also never got around to finishing out the rear disk conversion, but by my calculations it would have given me much better brake balance (potentially too much rear, depending on the proportioning valve..)

If you haven't, take a read through this: http://www.matrixgarage.com/content/get ... brid-build
Last I checked the owner said he was getting out of the custom car stuff game, but if his store is up he's probably still slinging parts.

In any case, this'll be a neat conversion!
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AugustusFerdinand
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My tercel:: 1983 Toyota Tercel SR5

Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

LowBuckCanuck wrote: Sat Aug 24, 2019 9:07 am Very interested in where this project goes!

Lifting information can be found here:

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=13106
One of the many bookmarks! I'm likely to go with the Abra-Cadaver lift as it sits well, uses all new parts, and the CVs should be put at a better angle after I shim the drivetrain down to fit the 7AGE.
teranfirbt wrote: Sat Aug 24, 2019 2:01 pm
AugustusFerdinand wrote: Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:32 pm [*]Brake upgrade
Recently came across this link and will also be upgrading stopping power as it's been a concern of mine since I started looking to upgrade things. Brakes are usually the first item I improve on my performance oriented projects. They aren't exciting to most, but it keeps the car together and helps to get you home each night. The larger brakes should fit under my new wheels and I'll decide what I'll do for the rear as I won't be upgrading to 15" wheels and I don't know if that user took braking force balance into account.
I didn't and it's kinda garbage, way too much front, but Toyota was always super conservative with their brake proportioning :roll:
I also never got around to finishing out the rear disk conversion, but by my calculations it would have given me much better brake balance (potentially too much rear, depending on the proportioning valve..)

If you haven't, take a read through this: http://www.matrixgarage.com/content/get ... brid-build
Last I checked the owner said he was getting out of the custom car stuff game, but if his store is up he's probably still slinging parts.

In any case, this'll be a neat conversion!
That's what aftermarket adjustable brake proportioning valves are for! I've done so on a couple of projects and race cars prior and the single line Wilwood valve is about $40 last I checked, which will suit the Tercel just fine.

Matrix Garage is one of the resources I've referenced for my 7AGE compression ratio calculations, and comparing them to forums, which is why I'm concerned as to if my numbers are off. There's thankfully a few different places to get a reborached gear if he isn't doing it any longer. If all else fails, I'll find out where the new keyway needs to be exactly and take it to a machine shop to get cut.
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
teranfirbt
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by teranfirbt »

Heh, I happen to have one of those prop valves on the shelf for this exact project ;)
I've been thinking about finding a 4AGE head to swap onto my 4AFE, I used the generic style 4AF/4AG style pistons when I rebuilt the bottom end so I think I can just make the swap. The 4AFE is a significant improvement over the 3AC, but it'd be a ton of fun to have the revs.
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AugustusFerdinand
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

teranfirbt wrote: Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:12 pm Heh, I happen to have one of those prop valves on the shelf for this exact project ;)
I've been thinking about finding a 4AGE head to swap onto my 4AFE, I used the generic style 4AF/4AG style pistons when I rebuilt the bottom end so I think I can just make the swap. The 4AFE is a significant improvement over the 3AC, but it'd be a ton of fun to have the revs.
Right there with you. While I don't intend to hang out in the higher end all that often, the 3AC is a s-l-o-w revving engine. The 16V 7AGE are known to not drop off in power until around 7k. So it'll be nice to have something that'll sing if I feel like hanging out in a gear for an extended amount of time.

Now if I can just get it to stop being over 100F outside...
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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Petros
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by Petros »

I think having rear disks would be great, but unless there is an adapter kit, it looks like too much work to make it work on your own. typically there is a lot of trial and error, making spacers and brackets, etc so it all works together, and than dialing in front to rear bias with a propositioning valve. And getting the parking brake to work as well. More messing around.

I am not sure there is any significant brake performance advantage going to rear disks on a daily driver, as compared with the cost and effort it will take. Many new cars with good brakes still use rear drum brakes. What I mean is the rear brakes do not get that much hard use, so the performance improvement would be minimal for a daily driver.


OTOH if you stay with the same dia rotor on the front, and same piston area, you will not alter the front to rear bias. that is what I did with the MR2 master/booster upgrade and the 25 mm vented front rotor swap (there is a thread on it). the caliper piston area is the same, as is the dia of the rotor, so the front to rear bias is not affected. the MR2 booster is larger (the later models use a double diaphragm), and smaller dia bore, so the braking power ratio is improved. It is a noticeable improvement to just go with the 25 mm front rotors/calipers, and the MR2 master and booster. all part are bolt up, with no special parts to fabricate.

here is the link to do my brake up grade:

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=4998
'87 Tercel 4wd SR5 (current engine swap project)
'84 Tercel 4wd (daily driver, with on going mods)
'92 Mazda MPV 4wd (wife's daily driver)
'85 Tercel 4wd DLX auto(daughter's daily driver)
'01 Honda Civic (other daughter's daily driver)
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AugustusFerdinand
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

Petros wrote: Mon Aug 26, 2019 8:50 pm I think having rear disks would be great, but unless there is an adapter kit, it looks like too much work to make it work on your own. typically there is a lot of trial and error, making spacers and brackets, etc so it all works together, and than dialing in front to rear bias with a propositioning valve. And getting the parking brake to work as well. More messing around.
The adapters would be trial and error, but that's why I'm a man of many talents. :D Prototypes for fitting I can toss together in CAD, spit them out on my 3D printer, and when all is well and good make the toolpaths for my (upcoming) CNC machine and have the final pieces ready to go.

Proportioning valves are already pretty easy to dial in on race cars where I've used them before. The basics are a matter of reproducing racing conditions and then tuning the valve to lock up all four wheels at the same time. It's even easier on a street car where ideal racing conditions aren't expected and so you tune them "cold".

Parking brake is another easy solution from racing (and drifting) with an inline hydraulic handbrake to replace the current cable operated one. The difference here from those used in drifting is keeping the ratcheting mechanism to lock the rears in place instead of being released automatically. Another easy solution that won't work would be a line lock, but they have a nasty little habit of bleeding pressure over time and that's an easy way to find your Tercel has rolled down the hill and into your neighbor's nice new car during the night...
Petros wrote: Mon Aug 26, 2019 8:50 pm I am not sure there is any significant brake performance advantage going to rear disks on a daily driver, as compared with the cost and effort it will take. Many new cars with good brakes still use rear drum brakes. What I mean is the rear brakes do not get that much hard use, so the performance improvement would be minimal for a daily driver.
True that rear brakes do not get much hard use, but a lot of the reasoning behind that was factory setups being conservative or working with the technology they had at the time. Bringing the rear brakes up in power and balancing them with the proportioning valve will improve stopping distances and stability by making the rears work as hard as they can. A big part of braking improvements comes from the rubber that's touching the ground; you can put a set of F1 brakes on a Tercel and it won't do a lick of good if you're rolling on dryrotted off brand tires. The Tercel rear brakes, and those on many cars, simply aren't working as hard as they could/should be.

That said...
Petros wrote: Mon Aug 26, 2019 8:50 pm OTOH if you stay with the same dia rotor on the front, and same piston area, you will not alter the front to rear bias. that is what I did with the MR2 master/booster upgrade and the 25 mm vented front rotor swap (there is a thread on it). the caliper piston area is the same, as is the dia of the rotor, so the front to rear bias is not affected. the MR2 booster is larger (the later models use a double diaphragm), and smaller dia bore, so the braking power ratio is improved. It is a noticeable improvement to just go with the 25 mm front rotors/calipers, and the MR2 master and booster. all part are bolt up, with no special parts to fabricate.

here is the link to do my brake up grade:

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=4998
This is great info that I recall seeing prior, but had evidently lost as it's not in my bookmarks. The master cylinder swap is something that would definitely help both with your upgrade path and the future big brake upgrade (depending on piston sizes, that I'll check later). Your brake upgrade is what will likely be my path at the start since the 4 wheel disc swap will involve the previously mentioned multiple iterations of sizing and part selection to get it right before it's production ready and I'd rather have the Tercel running around on something better than stock for the time being if I can't have the brakes dialed up to max right away. So thank you very much for that link.

In other updates: I've confirmed that my math is correct and the reference that others use for the 7AGE compression ratios are off slightly. So I'll decide sometime soon on whether I'm keeping the 7A pistons for a regular gas friendly 9.04:1 ratio, or the premium fuel selection of 4A SP pistons and head gasket for 11.02:1. Another part arrived today, wideband o2 sensor along with parts for one of my other project cars, so we're one more step closer and with August coming to a close it's about to be prime project season here in Texas! Hooray for the upcoming end of 100+F days!
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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Petros
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by Petros »

I am well aware of everything you wrote (I once worked for a fully factory sponsored racing team for Nissan, back when they had a racing program. I helped design and build a racing 300zx, that had never been defeated).

it is not that it can not be done, it is just a lot of messing around for marginal improvement. Yes, all performance and racing cars now use 4 wheel disk brakes, because of their advantages. I just question the effort it takes for a hardly noticeable improvement to developer one from scratch, for a daily driver. But if you work out the bugs on a rear brake conversion, I would be happy to buy a kit from you.

BTW, the rear disk brakes on the MR2 look like an easy thing to adapt to the rear of the Tercel. As a bonus, they match balance with the front brakes if you convert both front and rear at the same time. Perhaps avoiding the need for a proportioning valve. And it has a workable parking brake set up that appears to be easy to adapt to the Tercel4wd brake handle (I have a set in my garage, waiting for an adapter plate to be fabbed up). It might be worth a look to minimize having to fab custom parts.

Hydraulic parking brake seems like a bad idea, eventually the pressure will bleed off as the brakes age. the MR2 rear brakes already have a decent mechanical set up ready to go.
'87 Tercel 4wd SR5 (current engine swap project)
'84 Tercel 4wd (daily driver, with on going mods)
'92 Mazda MPV 4wd (wife's daily driver)
'85 Tercel 4wd DLX auto(daughter's daily driver)
'01 Honda Civic (other daughter's daily driver)
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AugustusFerdinand
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

Not a lot to report so far, been nothing but 100+F days around here. Engine is out of the truck and on the engine stand, have added freeze plugs to the shopping list as the engine seller popped holes in several to get all the fluids out before shipping. It's dirty, but nothing some degreaser and my powerwasher can't clean off. I'll probably hit it with some block paint before putting it in. Will probably keep the heatshield and exhaust manifold bracket to integrate into the headers I'll fab up after they're sandblasted and cleaned. Next up is getting the head off, harvesting all the hardware for my spares drawer, and checking the internals for the rebuild.

If anyone pursues the same, the bolts needed to mount the 7AFE engine to the stand are M12 1.25 pitch.

Image
1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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AugustusFerdinand
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Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

Been a minute, not a lot to report that pretty much everyone here wouldn't find par for the course. Mostly little things like buying parts, replacing small stuff, and working on other projects. On the one hand it's nice to have other vehicles so I'm in no rush to work on the Tercel, on the other I'd like to have been able to drive it during the Texas Snowpocalypse last week... Don't want to pepper the images throughout the post and the weird spacing it requires, so I'll just link them as appropriate and put thumbnails at the end for anyone that doesn't want to click on each link; thumbnails are clickable to view full size images if so desired.

The old 3A has been pulled, stripped of anything that may prove useful on the conversion, and scrapped, the trans is out, cleaned up, and all the plugs are being updated to low profile internal hex variety. The 7AFE shortblock and 4AGE head have been rebuilt; shortblock had a bad #3 main bearing, but no scoring on the crank thankfully. Pistons are from smallport 4AGE so it'll be running 11:1 compression, ARP studs tie it all together. Valve covers were in rough shape from previous owner so they were sodablasted, sanded, and coated in wrinkle black paint; block and oil pan are in "Oldsmobile Gold" block paint.

The oil pan adapter is hit by the #3 rod when rotating the crank, so a little clearancing is necessary. Same with the oil pan itself as the #4 rod hits the stock oil pan, but is easily persuaded. There's one bolt that needs to be countersunk on the block side of the adapter as it sits right along the wall of the oil pan, two others that attach from the bottom of the pan to the adapter have to be drilled and countersunk as well to keep everything well sealed. There are other little things like cleaning up the holes that needs to be done and Chard is adjusting the adapter file he uses so it's less of an issue in the future.

A note on building a 7AGE that I haven't seen others address, the 7AFE block does not line up perfectly with the 4AGE head gasket. There are three holes that don't line up, with the intake side coolant passage hole being the most concerning and needing to be opened up.

Dropped the block into the bay for test fitting, as expected it sticks out a bit; even more so with the stock intake manifold attached. So at this point I'm contemplating my options for clearing the hood as I'd greatly prefer not modifying the hood/cutting a giant hole in it. Looks like I'll likely do a body lift to drop the engine lower in the bay, question is how much of a lift. A relatively small lift to just clear the valve covers and fabricating a custom intake is one option, a larger lift to clear the stock intake manifold is the other. I'm open to other ideas of course, so feel free to share.

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1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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Kozuto_98
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Posts: 199
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 3:45 pm
My tercel:: 1987 SR5 Wagon
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada

Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by Kozuto_98 »

How much progress have you made with getting the 7A block and the stock intake to fit?
I have some worries about the silvertop-fe hybrid I'm going to do about hood clearance so I'm interested to see how your swap goes.

Have you considered using an ITB kit or an aftermarket RWD intake for your setup? They can be a bit pricy but that might be a solution to consider,
then again I'm not sure how much that will help considering the 7A block is a little taller. Something to look into.

Very nice setup, just got around to checking this thread out, can't wait to see where it goes!
1987 Tercel Wagon SR5 4WD
1997 Acura CL
RIP 2016 Civic (wrist pin recall)
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AugustusFerdinand
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Posts: 87
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 10:06 pm
My tercel:: 1983 Toyota Tercel SR5

Re: Texas T4WD 7AGE Project

Post by AugustusFerdinand »

None that isn't theoretical. (read: I've just been thinking about it)

I have both the FWD manifold (faces firewall) and RWD manifold (faces front of car) and both stick up above the lower hood line by 3 5/8" and the RWD manifold would be harder to fit as you still need to attach the throttle body and intake pipe under a hood that is sloping downward. Add in the bracing underneath the hood, space for movement, and it's a 4" drop at least.

A 4" crossmember drop/body lift is enormous and, while I need to just go stare at my car for awhile to be sure, is probably just not feasible. So I have a few ideas rolling around for solving the intake manifold problem, but they do not involve ITBs or a carb setup (heading anyone thinking about suggesting carbs off at the pass). Aftermarket manifolds for these are so expensive (and those that aren't are just terrible) that I'll fabricate my own from scratch if all my other ideas don't pan out.


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1983 Toyota Tercel SR5 - 7AGE swap in progress
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